When it comes to female bodybuilding, there’s a lot to take into consideration when it comes to muscle development. Your nutrition, training and rest are the backbone for your overall progress.
So, how long have you been training, and I mean slaying away at the iron, yet not showing any physical changes? How many different programs are you following? Let’s face it, there is no shortage of information these days online, in the mags, and even at the gym.
I find most people are in information-overload mode. They have so much information yet have absolutely no idea of how to apply any of it. To the newbie, I can bet it’s exhausting to sift through it all, trying to find the golden nuggets.
The downside is that the most of the data online is just copy/paste material from other web sites or poorly spun articles just so a web site can have content. It’s sadly come to the point that anyone can buy a domain, steal content and slap their name on it can call themselves a “fitness expert.”
BUT, I’m not like that. I’ve been in the fitness industry since 1988 and been having my business online since 2001. I have a pretty good track record and feel free to Google me anytime. I’m backed by over 27 years of experience, research, and personal trial-and-error!
You may find that there is a bit more to female bodybuilding than just what the newest trainer on the block copy/pasted from another or what’s posted on a forum by a teen who has been working out for a solid 8 months!
I’m going to help you unlock what you need to do to boost your lean muscle gains like you’ve never imagined. This concept is nothing new or just discovered. It’s just the forgotten and overlooked female bodybuilding growth factor basics.
Let’s Cover a Few of the Cold Hard Facts About Female Bodybuilding…
Nail Down Your Starting Point
It’s a fact that most women venturing onto female bodybuilding are unsuccessful because they fail to find their personal starting point. Your unique starting point will be different from someone else. Your starting point needs to be based on your body type, activity level, stats, as well as your current diet and training program.
If you don’t have any idea of your personal body stats, how will you find your starting point? You can’t. Therefore, do some homework and find a starting point for your diet and training based on your body stats and activity level.
Employ Progressive Overload
I have to say it because I’ve seen it firsthand. Too many women that are into female bodybuilding are not challenging themselves when they weight train. It’s true. If your goal is to build muscle you have to stimulate and challenge your muscles when you train, and do this on a continual basis.
I’ve seen ladies go to the gym 3-4 times a week. I see them do the same exercises for the same number of sets, for the same reps, blah, blah, blah. All they are doing is burning calories, and maybe building some muscle endurance.
If your goal in the gym is to build muscle, then you must, and I mean MUST progressively overload your muscles. Overloading your muscles can be done by increasing the poundage, varying the sets and reps, and even changing exercises when one format becomes stale. You gotta challenge your muscles to force them into growth in female bodybuilding.
Use Correct Form
The simple fact that you lift weights doesn’t mean you will automatically sprout muscles. As nice as that sounds, it’s not going to happen. Two sets of curls done with correct form will give far greater results than 4 sets of curls with bad form.
Joey Vaillancourt NSCA-CPT at bodybuilding.com states, “Muscle fiber activation is just as important if not more as the amount of weight you can lift. If you can stimulate more muscle fiber with slightly less weight and better form, then why would you sacrifice that positive factor by lifting a heavier weight with improper form and bad technique?”
There is a technique to every exercise and knowing the right form for training each muscle group will boost your muscle gains like crazy.
Women have a big problem with this one. Sorry ladies, but it’s true. When it comes to female bodybuilding, a lot of women think they want to build muscle, but when the muscle weight on the scale increases, they assume they are gaining body fat. So, out of fear of gaining scale weight they change their goal to fat loss.
After a few months they realize they don’t have enough muscle or want more and go back to building muscle. They go back and forth between building muscle and losing fat, and really never accomplish anything.
The scale weighs your body as a whole. It cannot distinguish between muscle, fat, water, bone, or organ weight. You should be checking your body fat and taking pictures to measure your progress. In female bodybuilding, you can’t lose sight of this.
Choose a goal and stick to it for at least 12 weeks, and stop putting focus on the scale. The weight fluctuations are irrelevant if you really want to build muscle.
Ah yes, you can have too much of a good thing. A lot of newbies, and even intermediate female bodybuilders struggle with having too much information. Information overload is having so much information at hand, yet not knowing how to apply any of it. The person becomes overwhelmed and confused.
How does one get to this state? Simply by reading every blessed piece of information they can find. Yes, educating yourself is fine, and I encourage it, but the downfall is gorging on information to the point of confusion. The person gets to the point where she can’t even sift through the information to find what’s useful.
A sure-fire way to avoid this problem is to fine ONE person, that knows what he or she is talking about, and listen to him or her only. The idea is to focus on one set of ideas. Based on that, gather your information and get a clear understanding of it. Once you can fully understand the concept, then you can move on to other ideas.
You will have a much better grasp on it by reading books written on kinesiology and other works by scientists and doctors in the field of sports nutrition as well as natural healing. It’s sad to say, but you won’t find that real information on female bodybuilding in hyped-up magazines.
Track Your Progress
You will never know how much muscle you are building if you don’t track your progress. You need to log everything. Track the days you train, the exercises you do, the number of sets and reps you do, as well as rest time. This information is useful for overall muscle development and it will prevent overtraining.
Train Your Weak Muscle Groups
How many times have you saved that lagging muscles to last in your training, only to do a few sets and reps or skimp out on it all together? I mean, it’s no ego boost to train a lagging body part. Who wants to train something they are not strong at?
It’s common in female bodybuilding for lifters to train their stronger body parts. Let’s face it. Strong body parts are more fun to train, and they are ego boosting. However, improving your weak body parts can make them into strengths, creating overall balance. That’s what female bodybuilding is about, building a well-built and balanced physique.
To give you an example, I use to have very skinny legs my first few years of bodybuilding. They were a weak body part and that just made them harder to train mentally and physically. After a few competitions and the judge’s feedback, I built a powerful set of legs in just 8 months, and it was all done by using these tips you are reading now. In fact, my leg training protocol worked so well I wrote a book on it, Killer Quads.
Using True Intensity
What I find amazing is that a lot of bodybuilders and even coaches and trainers are totally confused about what intensity actually is. This can be a huge problem if you goal is to build muscle.
A true certified personal trainer can tell you what intensity is, and the difference between aerobic intensity and anaerobic intensity. You see, aerobic intensity is based on time factor. Anaerobic intensity is based on poundage used.
Now, is doing more exercises, sets and reps higher intensity? Yep, if you want to build your cardiovascular system and muscle endurance. Go for it!
If you want to build muscle then use anaerobic intensity, 2-3 exercises per body part, including at least one compound exercise, 3-4 sets in the 6-10 rep range or so.
For true muscle gain intensity purposes, if you do 6 reps the poundage is to heavy and vise-versa. The female bodybuilding trick is to find your personal intensity level and build on it.
Putting All Your Trust Into the Latest Breakthrough Supplement
The supplement industry is over a $20 billion dollar market these days! Nearly every month new as well as “improved” products are introduced promising everything from immediate muscle gain to stripping of every last bit of body fat. Oh how great those concepts would be, if they were true.
It’s a fact that supplement companies prey on your hot buttons. These product companies use promotional hype and persuasive advertising with enticing pictures of fitness models to pull you in to purchase their over-priced product.
Most sports supplements are useless. Do some homework and read up on the science of sports nutrition and human physiology and you will be able to understand which sports supplements are helpful in your goals and why the others are just plain junk.
The little trick to taking supplements is in their dosage and timing. The sports supplements that are effective work best when taken with certain nutrients and timed correctly. For example, taking glutamine can be helpful in sparing your muscle mass, but taking 5 grams of glutamine before training and 5 grams after training will more than triple its effectiveness.
Hire A Trainer When You Can’t Figure It Out
It’s true, you can get totally overwhelmed with an abundance of female bodybuilding information and how to apply it all, and you may even need a watchful eye to keep you on track for personal guidance.
Even the best female bodybuilders and figure competitors have coaches to help guide them along the way to keep them on track and to prevent them from just screwing everything up out of sheer panic. Having a qualified fitness coach will take all the guess work out of your program, eliminating costly mistakes.
Another benefit of having a coach is simply by following how your training structures your program over the course of a few months is a lot of detailed information. If you pay attention to the outline format and take notes to how your body responds, you can gain a lot of insight.