You may have made many changes in your diet, exercise and lifestyle. From these changes, you might have started to see results. Your muscles have improved significantly and you feel much healthier! But why has it suddenly come to a halt?
Are you getting enough sleep?
If you are not sleeping well, your body will produce a lot more cortisol, which is a stress hormone. The production of cortisol will fight against the human growth hormone and make your body unable to store glycogen. All these factors will play a part in hindering your muscle growth.
Being overly tired will also mean that you will not train to 100% of your ability, so you will not get the results you desire.
Are you training too hard or too long?
When you take part in intense training, it actually breaks down your muscles. You will need to ensure each muscle group gets the correct recovery time to grow stronger. To make sure of this, you are best to train each group only 1-2 times per week.
High-intensity exercise is the best way to improve your muscles, but you should only work to your limit at an hour a time. Around 45 minutes into a high-intensity workout, your body will begin to produce cortisol, which can destroy the muscle cells.
Are you eating enough protein?
The amino acids in protein are what helps to build and repair your muscle tissues. You cannot successfully build your muscles without it.
Remember to consumer 1.2-1.7 grams of protein per kilogram of your body weight every day for maximum results.
Do you change your workout routine?
You should aim to change your workout routine every 6-8 weeks. If you do not, your muscles will start to get too used to your current routine and will no longer grow.
Try using slightly heavier weights if that is manageable, or change the type of exercises you are doing altogether.
Are you doing too much cardio?
If you are trying to bulk up, cardio should not be a dominant factor in your exercise. Though it is a great way to lose weight, it tends to put the body into a muscle burning state – which is the opposite of what you want.
Focus on weight training, but feel free to add some cardio in throughout the week to improve your overall fitness.
How much water do you drink?
Dehydration can seriously hinder your progress. Water is just as important for muscle growth as protein and carbohydrates. It is essential for the digestive system, so not drinking enough will cause a whole range of problems.
It is much harder to workout when you are dehydrated so you will not create the best results. It is recommended that you drink half of your weight (in ounces) of water every day.
Are you always stressed?
This brings us back to the dreaded cortisol hormone. The more our body produces, the more it increases our appetite and levels of fat storage. This can make us overload on all the wrong things. As it stops our body’s cells from being able to make use of glucose, our muscle proteins begin to break down as a result. Ultimately, this stops muscle growth and prevents our bodies developing after all our hard work elsewhere.
It is important that you discover exactly what is making your life stressful so that you can to put an end to it. Making those life changes is vital for both your physical and mental health.
Once you start to make these changes, you will be able to get back on track to achieve your goals. As you get back into a healthier lifestyle, you will begin to see the results.