Are you CRUSHING your workouts but not seeing any results? Chances are, you’ve fallen victim to bad advice. DON’T BELIEVE THE HYPE! Here are three common misconceptions when it comes down to building muscle and getting ripped six pack abs.
I’m giving you the three common misconceptions when it comes down to building muscle.
I’m gonna give you the three right out the gate so you know what to expect.
The first one I want to talk about is going to be how much protein you need. The second one that I’m going to talk about is how often you should eat and the third one is one that’s really interesting and that is should you be lifting heavy. There’s a lot of myths that go around with that.
So let’s go ahead and get right down to the science.
Myth #1 – Protein
First things first, protein. How much protein do you really need? Most of us are told when it comes down to building muscle that we need one gram per pound of body weight.
Well…not quite the truth.
In fact a lot of people will even say that you need one gram of protein per pound of body weight that you wish to weigh. So that could be a lot of protein if you have a 150 pound person that wants to weigh 250 pounds.
That 150 pound person would be consuming 250 grams of protein, that’s a lot of protein.
So let’s break this down a little bit more.
All of our macronutrients that we consume (proteins, fats and carbs) all contain oxygen, hydrogen and carbon, but only protein contains nitrogen in addition to those. That nitrogen is what we need to be paying attention to.
If we are in what’s called a positive nitrogen balance where we have more nitrogen than our body is using our body uses that extra nitrogen or protein to create muscle.
If we are in a negative nitrogen balance where we have less nitrogen than what’s required in our bodies, that’s when we’re going to actually lose muscle. So the question is, “how much protein do you need to be in a positive nitrogen balance?”
Well the short answer is you barely need to be in a positive nitrogen balance.
All you need to be is point zero zero one percent positive nitrogen balance before your body shifts gears to protein anabolism and starts building muscle.
There have been a lot of studies that have talked about this but I want to reference one study in particular.
This study took a look at people that worked out regularly and we’re comparing what happens when someone consumes a lesser amount of protein with more protein.
This study took two groups of people. One group of people they gave 0.6 grams of protein per pound of body weight and the other group they gave 1.19 grams of protein per pound of body weight .
There was virtually no difference in muscle mass and strength result after weeks of eating these amounts of protein.
This is just one study that takes a look at how protein has a powerful effect.
There were other studies that took a look at how hard you train and if it had an instance with how much protein you need.
Simple answer is, you don’t need more protein even if you’re training harder.
It all comes down to the fact that when you train harder your insulin sensitivity is higher, which means your body gets more protein sensitive, which means you can actually do more with less protein because your body’s going to utilize it more efficiently.
So in short, where should you land? How much protein should you aim for?
I say that you may want to split the difference.
There’s no telltale exact answer but since we know that 0.6 grams per pound of body weight works pretty well and we know that 1.19 doesn’t change much, let’s go ahead and kind of split it somewhere down the middle and say 0.75 or 0.8 is a good place for you to land and that’s the weight that you are now not the way you desire to weigh.
Myth #2 – Meal Frequency
The next one that I want to talk about is time between meals or small amounts of fasting or even longer bouts of fasting for that matter.
Most people think that you need to be consuming food every two hours in order to build muscle. Not the case at all.
You see when you are fasting or when you have longer periods of time between meals, I’m talking about just eating breakfast lunch and dinner even, not just to tout fasting.
When you have those longer periods of time, you have small spurts of human growth hormone.
This human growth hormone does a lot of different things in the body. It’s a 191 peptide chain but what it ends up doing is it promotes the body to produce what are called chondrocytes.
Chondrocytes divide in the cartilage to allow your skin to be smoothy or joints to be better, but it also helps protein animalism.
It also helps kick-start the protein to be utilized in order to build muscle or cause what’s called hypertrophy.
That hormonal response in and of itself far supersedes the effects of eating every two hours.
Now when we also fast, we also produce beta hydroxy butyrate.
When beta hydroxy butyrate is going to preserve muscle cells and it’s going to increase muscle cell proliferation.
By setting the standard where the muscle cells don’t catabolized and don’t break down, any additional protein that comes in on top of that it’s gonna allow those muscle cells to grow and allow them to divide and allow them to actually cause hypertrophy which causes muscle to grow.
So fasting or having time between meals isn’t a bad thing. You don’t have to fall victim to eating every two hours like a lot of the fitness industry or the common message boards t will tell you to do.
Lastly, I want to talk about lifting heavy.
Myth #3 – Lifting Heavy
This is a big one and let me totally be honest here for a second, I am NOT against lifting heavy. I think it has its place.
You have powerful hormonal responses that occur whenever you are lifting heavy or doing compound lifts.
Don’t get me wrong… I’m not saying it’s not the way to go, but what I do want to prove with this concept is that lifting lighter weights and focusing more on how your load is affecting your muscle versus how heavy the load is is a little bit more effective.
There’s one study that was published in the Journal of applied physiology and what they looked at was groups of individuals that were lifting to 30 percent failure versus 80 percent failure. So basically they were doing lighter sets with more reps.
What they ultimately found is that (believe it or not) there was no difference between the two groups in terms of how much protein they were able to synthesize in the muscle.
It didn’t affect how much muscle they built even if they were focusing on only going to 30% of their maximum effort or 80% of their maximum effort.
What this proves is that it’s not the weight of the load that matters, it’s the time under tension (TUT) or the focus of the load and how long that muscle is exposed to the load.
That’s just one study.
And to the surprise of most powerlifters and bodybuilders… it’s NOT lifting heavy weights or going to the gym 4-6 days per week.
Another study was published in the journal of strength and conditioning research and they took two different groups again.
One group lifted weights to 55 to 60 percent of their 1 rep maximum, the other group lifted to 80 to 90 percent of their one rep maximum.
Well guess what?
Both groups activated the exact same gene pathway that is needed to build muscle in the exact same way.
It didn’t matter whether they lifted 55 to 60 percent of their max load or 80 to 90 percent of their max load.
This proves that you don’t have to be lifting close to your one rep max or lifting super heavy to effect the genetic mode that allows you to build muscle.
So that’s some simple simple science that breaks that down.
I do have to make sure that I say that progressive overload is always important. Your muscles are going to adapt, that’s why they get bigger.
So we do have to pay attention to the fact that even if we’re focusing on time under tension, we still need progressive overload.
As you get stronger, you’re going to have to incrementally increase the weight, but you don’t need to increase it by these massive massive loads.
Remember it’s not the weight of the load, it’s the time the muscle is under tension.
However, you may start requiring more weight for the muscle to be under tension.
That’s where you have to make sure you understand what I’m saying because I’m not just saying that you can lift the same amount of weight day in and day out and build muscle.
You still do have to incrementally increase the amount of weight that you lift, but if you’re doing it right and you’re staying lean, you’re building muscle and you’re doing bodyweight activities your body weight is going up, giving you just enough progressive overload to elicit the right response.
Yale hospital surgeon John Elefteriades recently went on record saying lifting heavy weights can KILL you…It’s been shown to cause tears in your aorta…
Leading to high blood pressure, heart failure, aneurysms, and sudden death. I wish I was lying… but it’s true.
And needs to be taken seriously…
Especially as you get older and your heart becomes weaker naturally with age…
Listen. Unless you’re a competitive power-lifter… or trying to be the next “World’s Strongest Man”… you don’t have to lift heavy weights for a powerful physique.
Sure, it’s one way of doing it… yet it’s very high risk and dangerous.
Which is why if you want to build muscle… and get JACKED safely and quickly WITHOUT lifting heavy weights… you’ll want to check this out.