We are used to thinking that when we do more of something specific, we will get the results that we are looking for. While this may hold true for some aspects of your life that you are trying to improve, it is not the case for bodybuilding. For example, if you are learning to play the piano, you are instructed to practice a few times a day every day of the week. As a result, you will become a more proficient piano player. This technique does not apply to weight training and bodybuilding. Unlike piano practice, when you consistently work out each muscle group, the result is over training and it can actually do more harm than good. It may even set you back in achieving your body building goals.
Less is more in the case of weight training and bodybuilding. The less you train your muscles groups, the more time they have to recover and redevelop and therefore, the larger and stronger your muscles will become. Your body design helps to protect you. When you keep adding more and more weights, repetitions and activity to your muscles, they go into defense mode and stop growing.
Lifting heavy weights and doing multiple repetitions does not automatically make your muscles grow stronger and larger. Your body needs rest. When your body is at rest, your muscles grow.
During the recovery period, your muscles do just that – they recover. When they recover, the muscle fibers reconnect over scarred tissues, created during a workout. The result is a bigger muscle. Most people train too hard and too often. When the body is under stress, it does not get time to adapt to it.
To train your muscles properly, you should develop a schedule that includes about three days of weight training each week. Anything more is over-doing it. Each workout session should last one-hour max. The longer your train, the less time your body has to recover. Keep your sets around 4-8, for each muscle group.
Larger muscles require higher reps and sets. Smaller muscles will grow with less reps and sets. As your muscles get used to the routine, you will notice that you are hitting a plateau. That means that your body does not have to exert as much stress to complete a routine. When this happens, it is time to either increase the weight you are using or the repetitions that you are doing.