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How to Get Over a Fitness Plateau

Have Your Results Peaked? The Importance of Hormones and Workout Variety

A workout program helps your mind and body.  Increasing your muscle mass has everyday benefits beyond having a physique that draws attention.  You will enjoy increased energy to be more productive and also have a greater sense of well-being.  However, your commitment to fitness training is closely tied to physical results.

Adding muscle to your chest, broader shoulders and bigger arms are the ultimate motivation for most workouts. When muscle gains slow or stop, many people assume their bodies have peaked. Others get discouraged and feel the effort to push past plateaus is too much for them.

Thankfully, restarting your progress can be much easier than expected.

Hormones:

Our bodies produce hormones that affect muscle growth and recovery. Due to many factors, our hormones can change for positive and negative effects. Testosterone is an important hormone to speed recovery from intense workouts and adding lean muscle.  Your age, diet, lifestyle and medical history all have an impact on testosterone levels.

Low T has many causes but common consequences. For workouts, less strength can prevent you from overcoming plateaus and minimize results.  Testosterone boosters are an affordable and convenient way to offset low T symptoms.  Some men may work with a medical professional for prescribed therapies to boost testosterone.

How to recognize signs of low T:

Are you over the age of 40? Some men start to lost testosterone in their thirties, with hormone shifts accelerating at forty years of age.  ‘Manopause’ is a term that describes changes to body composition and happiness when male hormones change.

Mumps and other diseases feed on hormones. In these cases, a doctor may use hormone depletion to remove testosterone from the body. This is meant to remove ‘ food’ for the disease.  Men who have undergone therapy to remove hormones may have low T levels.

Men with low T may see increases in bodyfat despite intense training. A lack of energy and lack of sexual interest can also result. Low T is also linked to erectile dysfunction, which shows the broad impact hormone changes can have on a man’s life.

How do you manage stress? The body produces a stress hormone called cortisol in response to anxiety. Excess cortisol can crowd out testosterone for less effective muscle gains. Working out is a great way to manage stress, but you may consider more options. A simple walk or closing your eyes to meditate will improve your well-being. 

Testosterone is primarily produced during sleep. Muscle growth mostly occurs during sleep, as well. You should aim for restful sleep with few interruptions. The quality of rest is equally important to quantity.  Minimize noise from your surroundings and aim to be on a regular sleep schedule. You could jumpstart your testosterone and muscle gains by focusing on better sleep patterns.

Workout Tips to Increase Testosterone:

How often do you change your workout? When our bodies adapt to regular routines, muscle gains can stall.  Testosterone is produced when physical demands are placed on the body. An all too familiar workout may not challenge your body to produce enough testosterone.

Compound movements that tax several body parts can spike testosterone. These include squats, deadlifts, bench presses and bent over rows, among others.

Bodyweight exercises and free weight routines can be mixed on alternate days to challenge your muscles in different ways. Periodically changing the order of your exercises should also be considered.

Instead of Giving Up, Remember to Adapt:

Changing your body requires persistence. You can continue to gain muscle by knowing how hormones and workout variety influence results.

In my book "The Muscle Experiment" I talk about how I was able to put on a solid 39lbs of solid muscle in less than 6 months with bodyweight training, and exactly how YOU can do it as well. In case you haven't downloaded The Muscle Experiment, I suggest you download it immediately and start implementing the little known techniques. This alone should put you on the road to massive size and strength.

To your success,

Mike Thiga

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