7 Minute Insights: Muscle

building muscle general health strength training Jun 21, 2022

A surefire way to a better life? Build more muscle.

Welcome! I'm Holly Perkins and I help you use strength training and intentional nutrition to create the body that you need to keep up with the life that you LOVE so you can be better in your life and feel amazing.

Today I'm bringing you a new segment, which I'm really excited about, called...

7 Minute Insights

I've gotten some feedback in the past asking for quicker, shorter little snippets of information instead of my 30 to 60 minute long segments that I normally do on Tuesdays. 

Today's 7 Minute Insight is all about building muscle.

These segments are designed to give you quick little bits of information on the fly so that you can learn and digest without having to commit to the longer segments that we normally do for Hot Tea with Holly. 

Today is all about building muscle, because it’s the foundation to what you need to live a full life.

And while that might sound like a bold statement, it's true. When it comes to your body functionality, we know that you've got to live an active life. We know that you need to be fit and strong. And when we look at the human physical body, as it walks through this 3d world that we live in, it's a conversation of musculature.

Now remember, it's your musculature that's holding you up against gravity - not your bones. Your bones and your joints are held in place by your muscular system. So if your joints are out of integrity, it's not a problem with the joint. It's a problem with the muscles that hold the two bones together that create a joint.

It's absolutely imperative that you keep your musculature strong and balanced so that your bones are in alignment. And that all comes back to muscle balance. It's important when you're building muscle that you are following a program that addresses your muscle weaknesses. 

If you're unsure if you have any muscle weaknesses, you could pretty much assume you do.

And that's a great place to start, but it's so important that all of your muscles are in balance. 

Your glutes need to be stronger than your quads. Your quads need to be stronger than your hamstrings. Your hamstrings need to be stronger than your biceps. Your biceps need to be stronger than your triceps and your deltoids need to be stronger than your biceps in your triceps. So every muscle group falls in a hierarchy, and you need to have this muscle balance in order to feel your best, avoid injury, and reduce the aches and pains. Whether you have back, shoulder, knee issues or hip issues, it's critical that you have balance throughout your body.

When it comes to building muscle, the number one thing about building muscle is progressive overload. 

Progressive overload is systematically exposing your muscles to harder work efforts. Today you need to expose your muscles to harder pushing and pulling through strength training so that tomorrow you’ll become stronger.

Then, when you recover and you get stronger next week, we have to do that again. That is progressive overload. You are progressively and systematically exposing your muscles to harder work through higher intensity, more frequency, heavier weight loads, longer duration, greater time under tension.

Those are the program variables that could change, but ultimately it comes down to the fact that next week you have to demand your muscles to work harder than this week.

Progressive overload is the only thing that builds muscles and makes you stronger. 

Drinking protein does not build muscles. A cardio workout or a run or a walk does not build muscles. The only thing that's going to build your muscle and really rev your metabolism forever is improving and building muscle. And the number one rule to building muscle is progressive overload.

The second thing and rule to be aware of for building muscle is what I refer to as the “20% Rule”.

Every week, you want to be working about 20% harder than where you were last week or where you are this week. That could be 20% of the number of minutes that you spend in a strength workout, or it could be 20% more weight load on your squat. It could be 20% more repetitions in your sets or 20% more sets in a workout. 

And you can also just take an intuitive approach to it and say, “Okay, I have to work 20% harder today than I did last week,” and if you follow that golden rule, you will get great results and avoid over training. 

You will avoid a lot of that discomfort and muscle soreness that you get from challenging workouts. You will ease your body into progress, and make beautiful progress over time that's not too aggressive, but it's also not too slow. 

We need to find this sweet spot where you are challenging yourself enough that you're making progress, but not so much that it's too intense, but also you're working hard enough to get results.

The third thing that you want to focus on when it comes to building muscle is your nutrition. 

Your nutrition really is a big part of building muscle. If you're showing up for your workouts on empty you're not going to build muscle as well as you could.

And if you are not replenishing the protein and the carbohydrates after a strength training workout, the muscle will be handicapped in its recovery. So it's absolutely imperative that your nutrition is also on point. If you're not eating enough calories, your muscle will be handicapped in its rebuilding of itself.

It's important that you are following a sound nutritional plan so that your muscles have what they need to grow and become better and bigger and stronger, and so they can recover from your strength workouts. 

In review, number one, you've gotta be progressively overloading your muscles every single week. 

Number two, you need to consistently overload your muscles about 20% per week. 

Number three, your intentional nutrition plan supports building muscle.

I promise you if you build muscle, your life will be better. Do not worry about getting big and bulky. There's very little chance that's going to happen for you unless you are determined to make it happen.

And even if your muscles get a little bigger or fuller than you want, it's easy to retract from there.

You're not going to get big and bulky unless you set out to make that happen. 

That is today’s 7 Minute Insights. Let me know if you enjoy this type of content and I’ll offer more on different topics. 


Become Better Than Ever

Each week you'll get free info and tips to create the body you need to keep up with the life you love. Creating your best body ever is one part effort and one part desire. With 30 years of hands-on experience I can show you the fastest and easiest way to become empowered so tomorrow you'll wake up feeling unstoppable.

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