You’ve planned out your daily schedule, food intake, and gym plan – but the gains are just not there yet, WHAT GIVES? Well, it can be difficult to pinpoint a single reason. There could be a lot of factors contributing to your lack of muscle growth and strength. For example, you might not be seeing gains if you’re not sleeping enough or not eating enough protein but it could also be due to the infrequency of workouts. Keep reading for 5 common reasons that may be inhibiting your muscle growth and strength gains.
5 Reasons You Might Be Lacking Muscle Strength
1. Not enough variety
The first issue a lot of people run into is that you’re not adding enough variety to your workout plan. Variety in workouts is so important because you’re also working on a variety of different muscles.
Variety can mean a lot of different things as well. Sure, you love bicep curls, lat pulldowns, barbell hip thrusts but if you don’t change up the exercises that target those muscle groups, your body will become REALLY good at one thing. Efficiency doesn’t equate to muscle growth and improved strength. Changing up HOW you target your biceps, shoulders, back, etc., will work your muscles in ways they are not used to – and that will have you seeing gains in no time! I recommend working each muscle group three times a week with a variety of different workouts each of those three days.
2. You’re not challenging yourself
If you’re not increasing reps or weights over time, you’ll likely plateau. Meaning, if you’re not consistently challenging your muscles, they won’t become stronger. You have to intensify your reps to increase muscle learning and increase strength. A couple of ways you can do this is to play with the volume of your exercises as well as the amount of weight. Only hitting low weight and high reps will produce efficient muscles, while high weight with low reps may improve muscle strength. However, the combination of the two may help produce larger, more efficient results.
3. You’re not paying attention to your diet in addition to exercise
Diet and exercise go hand-in-hand. Specifically for increased muscle strength, you need a lot of protein. If you’re not eating enough protein on a daily basis, your muscle strength may bear the consequences. Protein is made up of amino acids, which are the building blocks of muscle tissue. In addition to protein, you also need to consume enough healthy fats. Healthy fats (HDL) activate amino acids to increase muscle strength and growth.
4. You’re not working on your mobility
Working out without focusing on mobility is like driving a faster car in traffic, YOU WON’T GET ANYWHERE! However, mobility is often overlooked when it comes to working out, even though it is extremely important. Balance and mobility can help improve your range of motion to give your muscles the ability to grow. Just like changing up the workouts so you don’t plateau, mobility will help your muscles move more efficiently and add room to grow stronger. Mobility is also important to increase blood flow through the muscle which will help avoid injury, reduce pain, and lower recovery time.
5. You’re not focusing on rest and recovery
Many people believe the more you work out, the stronger you will get. But don’t work out so much that you don’t allow yourself to fully recover. Avoid becoming overworked and overtrained by giving yourself rest days to provide ample time to recover. Learn more about my nutritional and exercise tips for better muscle recovery.
Focus on Your Strength Goals
Setting goals for yourself can be a big motivational factor. But if you’re setting goals that are too easy to reach, you’re not challenging yourself. If you’re trying to build strength and focus on getting stronger, setting goals that are too easy for you can feel rewarding but your strength might suffer. At the same time, setting unrealistically high goals can feel like you’re climbing an impossible mountain and can be demotivating. Set goals that challenge you but ones that you have the ability to work towards reaching.
Interested in working together? Contact me, I’d love to work with you and find ways to make you stronger.