Building muscle takes a lot of hard work, awareness, and planning. You need to know what stimulates muscle growth if you want to take your fitness program a notch higher. Lots of articles have been written about building muscle, but often the basics have been left out. Below are some of the useful tips to consider in your quest to build muscle during CrossFit training.
Include Protein in Your Diet
Protein is necessary for maintaining a positive nitrogen balance in the body. The Food and Drug Administration recommends an intake of about 0.8 grams per kilogram of bodyweight for protein. Remember muscle building is a compound process that includes neurotransmission, strengthening of cell structural components, and other processes. This is why it makes a lot of sense to ensure your diet has sufficient levels of the protein macronutrient.
Incorporate Compound Movements
Heavy rowing movements such as pull-ups and barbell rows go beyond building biceps to making your arms pop. If you want to strengthen your leg and hip muscles, you should get under the bar and do squats. If you find out the exercise you are doing only concentrates on one joint; chances are you are limiting your muscle building potential. Compound CrossFit workouts are the way to go.
Your Post-Workout Nutrition
Your post-workout meal arguably has the biggest impact on your muscle. During this time, your body cells tend to be more receptive to receiving glucose for energy. Therefore, a meal that has protein and carbohydrates ensures maximum glycogen synthesis. Aim at getting your post-workout meal within two hours after the completion of your workout.
Having a goal in your CrossFit workouts is important. The goal may be to lose weight, add muscle, or to improve your agility. Try as much as you can to make your goals specific because in doing so, they will be measurable and able to be monitored. For instance, you cannot realistically focus on adding muscle and losing weight at the same time. The best approach is to concentrate on one at a time.
Never Neglect the Eccentric Phase
During any of the CrossFit workouts, there are two main types of movement the body goes through; eccentric and concentric. During the concentric phase, your muscles tend to shorten as they generate force. This is the phase the body goes through when you lift weights.
Similarly, the eccentric phase is when the muscle gets a little bit longer under loads. This is when you are lowering the weight before pressing it back up. A majority of athletes tend to focus mainly on the concentric phase and neglecting the eccentric phase which ironically provides the most hypertrophy. Next time you are in the CrossFit gym, lower the bar in a more controlled way.
Apart from the above, also think about your workout frequency. There are three important kinds of training philosophies, and all of them are important. The most common aspect in all is that they leave enough time between working the same category of muscles so that they can enhance recovery.