If you’ve been planning to get into fitness, you probably follow a few fitness enthusiasts for daily inspiration and tips on how to get there. One of the things you may have noticed is that most individuals with ripped bodies use supplements for muscle growth. But is it necessary?
Can you build muscles without supplements? Yes. Building muscle depends on two things – proper nutrition and workouts. Supplements like creatine and protein powder are only necessary if you don’t get adequate nutrients from your diet.
To build muscle without supplements, here’s what you need to do:
- Start a proper weightlifting program.
- Eat plenty of fat and carbohydrate-rich foods.
- Eat protein-rich foods that are essential for muscle growth.
- Utilize pre-workout fueling.
- Challenge your muscles.
- Don’t forget to take a break.
With the right approach, it’s easy to build muscle without using supplements. In this article, you’ll learn the correct way to gain muscle without using supplements and tips for success to keep you motivated and encourage you to stick to the path.
Can You Build Muscles Without Supplements?
If you’re serious about starting a fitness routine, chances are you’ve already researched to get some ideas on where to start and what to do. In your quest to find the right information, you may have come across many bodybuilding sites that recommend taking supplements to boost your progress.
But how exactly do supplements help you build muscle, and do you have to take them? People use supplements for different reasons. For one, supplements are within reach. Instead of going to the grocery to buy numerous food items to reach their requirement of 2,000 calories a day, most male bodybuilders prefer to meet some of their dietary needs with the help of supplements.
Not to mention, supplements are often more affordable compared to buying food items that would help them meet their daily nutrient requirements. Bodybuilders also require higher amounts of nutrients to meet their daily energy and nutrient needs, which may not be possible to get from diet alone.
But is it necessary to take dietary supplements to build muscle? No. According to “Bodybuilding and Sports Supplements: The Facts,” you can get the same benefits you get from dietary supplements by introducing the right foods into your diet.
How to Build Muscles Without Supplements
There’s a common misconception that dietary supplements are vital to building muscle. This couldn’t be further from the truth. While individual supplements aid in muscle growth and repair, it’s not the supplements that lead to muscle growth. To build muscle, you must have a consistent, proper workout routine and fuel your body with the right foods.
1. Start a Proper Weightlifting Program.
When it comes to building muscle, weightlifting is a must. You must challenge your muscles so that they can grow. However, this doesn’t mean just lifting weights at the gym. You need to have a proper program to see results.
Most beginners are very enthusiastic about getting started. As a result, they start lifting too heavy on their first day or doing a ridiculous number of reps to “feel the burn.” This is a recipe for injury.
Building muscle takes time. You need to start at a weight you can lift comfortably and keep adding to it every week or month, depending on your strength. It is also advisable to work with a certified trainer so that they can not only direct you on what to do but also teach you the right form. Without the proper form, you will probably not get the results you seek. So always aim for quality, not quantity.
2. Eat Plenty of Fat and Carbohydrate-Rich Foods.
Another mistake most people make is giving up carbohydrates when they start working out. The assumption is that carbs make you gain weight and should be avoided. If you want to build muscle, you can’t avoid eating fats and carbohydrates because they’re your primary sources of energy.
If you don’t eat carbohydrates, your body will start burning protein to meet your daily energy requirements. The result of this is muscle degeneration – the exact opposite of what you’re trying to achieve.
So, make sure you’re eating your daily recommended intake of both fats and carbohydrates for the best results.
- Eat Protein-Rich Foods that are Essential for Muscle Growth.
To build muscle, you also need to ensure you are getting your daily protein intake. Your muscles are primarily made of protein. Therefore, to build muscle, your body must synthesize more muscle tissue than it breaks down. Consequently, you need to ensure you always eat enough protein for the best results.
According to Healthline, the typical recommendation is 1 gram of protein for a pound of body weight or 2.2 grams per kg of body weight.
4. Utilize Pre-Workout Fueling.
Before you start a workout, you need to ensure your body is up for the task. It is recommended that you eat a carbohydrate-rich snack 30 to 40 minutes before your workout. The carbohydrates provide additional energy that helps you perform at your best. Not to mention, they restore depleted muscle glycogen following a workout.
After the workout, eat a protein-rich meal to help synthesize new muscle tissue and repair your damaged tissues.
5. Challenge your Muscles.
For the best results, you also need to challenge your muscles by increasing the weight that you lift over time. When you start weightlifting, begin with less weight and add weight after the successful completion of your sets and reps.
Make sure you do it in small increments to avoid injury and always stop if it’s too much. Again, work with a certified trainer for the best direction on how to increase the weight that you lift.
Most people assume that when it comes to building muscle, it’s all about lifting weights and eating a balanced diet. While these are two essential things you need to do to see progress, they are not the only factors that matter.
You should get at least 7 hours of sleep every day for the best results. Your body needs adequate rest after intense training. While you’re at rest, your body also starts to repair the damaged muscles and recharge your energy levels for the next day.
7. Don’t Forget to Take a Break.
When you’re just starting, it can be tempting to train every day without taking a break. This is never a good idea. Rest is essential when you’re trying to build muscle because it allows your muscles to regain energy for growth.
Schedule 1 to 2 days of rest during the week to give your muscles the recovery time they need.
Tips for Muscle Building Success
Building muscle without supplements is entirely possible. The following are some tips that can help you make sure that you reach your goal without issues.
- Consult a licensed nutritionist for a dietary guideline.
- Work with a certified trainer.
- Master the right form.
- Be consistent.
- Get a workout buddy for motivation.
- Make sure to stay hydrated.
- Keep challenging your muscles with added weight or resistance.
- Be patient.
Can you build muscle without supplements? YES. All it takes is the right workout, proper diet, and rest. But to achieve the best results, you need to work with nutritionists and certified trainers. This way, you’ll know if you’re doing the right thing and what you need to tweak.
Also, practice consistency. Muscle building doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time and effort to get there. So, do whatever you can to stay on track, and before you know it, you’ll have achieved your goal!