You work hard to build up your bicep muscles in mass and strength, yet all of a sudden they seem to be not growing anymore. Despite the fact that you are working extra hard and doing your workout routine diligently, nothing is happening. You need answers and fast.
There can be a number of reasons why your body has stopped the process of achieving consistent muscle growth. It could be as simple as changing your sleeping patterns or just adjusting your workout program.
The following ten reasons and solutions can delve deeper into why you may be challenged with your muscle growth and how to build back up again fast.
You’re Not Getting Enough Sleep
Research shows that if you’re not getting enough sleep, then your muscles won’t grow. Also, you’re not working out 100 percent and not getting the best out of your muscle-building routine when you don’t sleep enough.
It’s important to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep each night. It is also a good idea to shut down all electronics and stimulating activity at least 30 minutes before heading to bed. Try taking a hot shower or bath before bed to relax your muscles and mind and prepare for a full night’s sleep.
You’re Not Getting Enough Protein or Getting Too Much
If you consume an excess amount of protein thinking that it will build up your muscle mass and strength, it will actually have the opposite effect. Taking in too much protein can have damaging effects on your body overall.
Consequently, not getting enough protein intake will affect your muscles from increasing in size. This is due to a protein containing amino acids which are the main compounds that build and repair your muscles throughout your body. Not getting enough amino acids will affect your muscle growth and can even halt the process.
To get the right amount of amino acids into your diet, incorporate between 1.2-1.7 grams of protein per kilogram of your body weight each day.
You’re Drinking Too Much or Consuming Substances That Can Mess with Your Muscle Growth
It’s perfectly okay to have a drink or two once in a while, however consuming too much alcohol can cause your body to go through slower recovery after a workout thus affecting your muscle-building potential.
This is because when you consume alcohol, your body uses antioxidants to help absorb the alcohol instead of using them to repair and build up your muscles.
Taking drugs like crystal meth, heroin, cocaine, etc. can actually break down your muscles and affect the muscle building process. Not only that but struggling through a drug addiction can affect your motivation and your lifestyle in negative ways.
If you are serious about building your muscles, then you need to cut out alcohol altogether from your life. If this is not an option, then limit your intake of alcohol consumption to one night a week and make sure to hydrate yourself to reduce the effects of a hangover the next morning.
If you find yourself challenged with drug addiction, it’s important to seek professional help when you are ready to overcome the problem and move forward in your life drug-free.
You’re Not Getting Enough Cardio and Just Focusing on Weight Training
A common misconception among bodybuilders is that doing cardio can somehow affect muscle building by breaking down the muscle tissue and taking energy away from the growth of the muscles themselves.
In fact, cardio is vital for muscle growth as it increases your oxygen flow to your muscles and burns excess body fat thus giving you more of a muscular and defined look that you are seeking.
However, as much as it is important, it can put your body into a muscle-burning state. It shouldn’t dominate your strength training.
A great way to incorporate cardio into your strength training regimen is to do outdoor activities that you enjoy such as running, hiking, swimming, or brisk walking.
5. You’re Training Too Much
If you overtrain, you can slow down your bodybuilding transformation by risking injury and limiting muscle growth.
Rest days are just as important as workout days because that’s the time that your muscles get an opportunity to rebuild.
It is a good idea to take at least 1-2 days off for every 7 days of training that you do.
You Avoid Eating Carbohydrates
There are carbohydrates that you should avoid because they can cause weight gain like candy, bread, pizza, etc.
Your body needs complex carbohydrates for glycogen, which helps give you the energy you need when you are training and recovering after a workout.
Limit processed carbohydrates from your diet but increase your intake of complex carbohydrates such as oatmeal, fruit, quinoa, beans, etc.
You’re Not Drinking Enough Water
Making sure that you are well hydrated throughout the day is overall very important for your body as it helps with digestion, thus feeding your muscles with the right nutrients that they need to grow.
In order to make sure that you are getting enough water, drink half of your body weight in ounces.
You’re Not Confusing Your Muscles Enough
Muscles need to be trained with a variety of intensities and volumes. If you are consistently working the same muscles, then you will avoid bigger gains.
It is a good idea to change up your strength training routine every 6-8 weeks so you can avoid any plateaus. Change up your reps and weights as you change your routine. Focus on exercises that work for the opposite muscle groups within each training session for the best results.
You’re Dealing with Too Much Stress in Your Life
According to a study in Medicine and Science in Sports Exercise, stress can cause your muscles to break down and inhibit muscle growth. The stress hormone, cortisol, can increase your appetite and your fat storage and affect your workout routine to its highest potential muscle building.
There are many community resources to help you gain the right tools to handle stress easier in your life. Stress in life can be inevitable at times, but planning for stressors and dealing with ways to let go or handle them effectively can be extremely helpful.
Learn meditation or take yoga classes to help with calming your body and tapping into more peaceful situations.
You’re Only Building Up Certain Muscles
When you are training your muscles, it’s important to not only focus on increasing the mass of your biceps, abs, and quads, and what you want to show off, but also to work out your two biggest muscles which are your back and legs.
The reason for this overall body training is that you will tap into your full muscle growth potential plus avoid injury as you will be more balanced with your body structure.
Make sure to work out your whole body and in equal amounts with each set and intensity.
If you follow the above tips, your muscle-building days will be back in full force, and you will have gained some valuable tools as you gain ultimate physical performance.