Everyone yearns to stay fit and in shape. People often have misconceptions over what staying fit is all about! Exercising regularly is important for healthy sustenance and being consistent with workouts is the key when it comes to maintaining one’s desired body weight. But we should remember that we should also care for our muscles which are the driving force behind our physical strength. Someone with an impressive muscle mass indicates how disciplined and self-motivated they are. Let us take a look at how we can build our muscle mass to truly stay fit.
What Is Muscle And Why It Is Important
The human body consists of various types of muscles all over the body which works together to produce force. They are made up of fibers of muscle cells with protective tissues around them. The contraction and expansion of muscle tissues give movement and strength to the body allowing it to carry out different tasks throughout the day. They help us to physically move, to lift, to support, to stand erect, etc as well as ensures smooth functioning of the internal organs from blood circulation to food processing by applying the apt force needed for each metabolic activity. Generally when people speak of muscles the first names that come to mind are triceps, biceps, abs and the likes. In medical terms, however, muscles can be classified as skeletal muscles, cardiac muscles, and smooth muscles. Skeletal muscle, controlled through the voluntary nervous system, is striated which implies that when observed under a microscope one can see linear marks. Cardiac muscle, also striated, surrounds the chambers of the heart and is controlled through the autonomous nervous system; aids in the smooth motion of the heart and lungs. Smooth muscles are not striated unlike the former 2 categories but are controlled by the autonomous nervous system more or less. They are found throughout the body and aids in most metabolic activities. Owing to their many different uses throughout the body we need to care for our muscles not only by dedicating time and effort to help built and maintain them but also by consuming muscle-healthy food. Muscles are not just for the bodybuilding community. Everyone, ranging from athletes to homemakers, needs to understand the importance of muscles and how best to care for them.
Factors To Look Into for Muscle Building
Some factors that need to be looked into for muscle building are as follows:
- Know your body type and opt for work-out plans that best suit your body type.
- Rigorous exercising daily means continuous wear and tear to the muscles which needs regular repairing. For this purpose, protein intake should be increased as they provide the necessary macronutrients for the same and makes the muscle stronger developed.
- Excessive consumption of protein in the absence of enough carbs can do more harm than good so keep a check on the carbohydrate intake in order to compensate the calories for muscle building as and when needed.
- Increase overall calorie intake for strong and well-developed muscles.
- Timely meal planning holds the utmost importance as they intervene in adding muscle mass as well as in the repair of muscles especially post a tough work-out in the gym.
- Increase the number of meals consumed per day as the body will work much more in terms of energy usage as well as strength training in order to gain the required muscle mass. Consulting a dietician would be a wise option.
- Keep aside gender-biased misconceptions when it comes to strength training. Gaining muscle mass is important for both genders considering it contributes to one’s overall health and fitness.
- Dedication is a key factor. Putting your heart and soul into strength training by being focused will show success rates at a faster pace as compared to someone who is less consistent or lazy.
- Know that sleep is a contributing factor when it comes to muscle build-up. What this actually means is that when subjected to intense physical training the body gets exhausted and a proper, nightlong peaceful sleep of at least 6 hours is what it takes to regain the lost energy. So sleeping on time and without any disturbance holds high importance.
- Don’t let your age define your personality or attitude. Age is just a number and it is never too late for a willing person to begin strength training regardless of the age category they fall into.
- Check for and increase water intake. Keeping the body properly hydrated by drinking at least 2 liters a day is highly recommended for both muscle building as well as defining.
Super Foods For The Muscle
It is very important to look into the kind of food that is being consumed if someone is looking to build muscle mass. Working out alone will not suffice in this scenario. Meals inclusive of calories, proteins, carbohydrates, fiber and fat are definitely what comes to mind. Let us take a look at some superfood that helps to gain muscle mass for the sake of development and repair:
- Eggs – rich in proteins, good fat, vitamin D and amino acids eggs definitely come under the super-food category for those looking to build muscles. They have great health benefits too.
- Chicken – provides the required protein for muscle repair and development, aids in weight management and promotes healthy bones. Better when consumed without the skin.
- Fish – rich in omega 3 fatty acids, low in fat and high in protein, they are a superfood for the body in terms of aiding proper metabolic functioning. Fish also promotes weight loss.
- Veggies and fruits – being packed with antioxidants that are vital for the immune system, they are also rich in vitamin C, E and beta-carotene and aid in overall metabolism.
- Good Fat – the kinds of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated found in nuts, leafy vegetables, certain types of fish, avocados and others, are good fats which is important as they aid in the production of hormones like testosterone, which is required for muscle growth and development.
- Whey protein supplements – providing quick and effective results as well as cheap as compared to other protein sources, whey protein are in demand among the body-building community.
- Beef – the most important component for muscle mass gain. Rich in iron, zinc, vitamin B, amino acids as well packed with protein, lean beef is your go-to food if you are looking for gaining muscle mass.
- Cottage Cheese – deemed as a great protein source for muscle build-up, as well as rich in calcium and vitamin B12, cottage cheese is considered an apt option being a slow-digesting protein. So it promotes muscle repair and maintenance.
- Oatmeal is a suitable option for those looking to add more carbs to their diet for muscle building. It helps to reduce hunger pangs, promotes fat loss and most importantly has a low glycemic index value.
One should understand that building muscles is not only for the purpose of looking attractive. Beginning from being able to stand erect, to going into a deep and peaceful slumber, to every action we carry out throughout the day cannot be deemed possible had we not had strong and smooth functioning muscles. So along with adopting a disciplined lifestyle in terms of regular exercising, eating on time and sleeping on time, also ensure to include muscle healthy food into your daily meal planning and rest assured you can enjoy the perks life has to offer independent and strong.