When trying to gain muscle and lose fat beginners are bombarded with advice, most of which is usually pretty sound. But most of this advice is not applicable without the basic foundations of a good lifestyle. Here are some things most people forget to consider when undertaking the muscle building lifestyle, or believe they are doing when they are not.
Mistake #1 – Failing to track progress.
This mistake is made by a good percentage of trainers out there, because many people make gains despite not tracking. When tracking you should be able to come back at the end of every month and specifically know every gram of food you have eaten, every weight lifted, how many reps, sets, when it got hard, where you failed, how many hours you slept, what supplements you were taking etc. But most importantly you need to track your one rep max on each lift, your weight and your bodyfat.
By doing this you are able to account for all failures and all successes and see where you went wrong/right. This information is invaluable if you are serious about getting big and lean. If for a given month you dont know how much muscle you lost/gained or how much fat you lost/gained you are cheating yourself out of knowledge beyond the scope of any article you may read online.
Dont just sit there and hope for the best, be accountable for your actions and take steps to improve.
Mistake #2- Failing to Lift Progressively Heavier weights/Allowing yourself to repeatedly lift the same weights
This is the sole reason 95% of people who go to the gym lack any discernible muscle mass, dont be one of them. This comes about because the health and fitness industry has this hard on for Form and “not letting your ego get into the movement” etc. Form is important, but only to the degree to which muscle is still being stimulated and gains are still being made. Bad form is when your form inhibits your ability to stimulate growth. I dont care how good your form on dead-lifts is, if you lift the same weight today as you did a year ago, you haven’t gotten noticeably bigger sorry. That said i dont care how bad your form is if your lifting noticeably more weight with the same form today as last year, congratulations you have gotten noticeably bigger. Controversial yes but you cant deny its truth, look at guys like branch warren, nothing about his form is “pretty” but he lifts heavier and heavier weights and gets bigger and bigger. Its called “weight” training instead of “set and rep” training for a reason.
Mistake #3 -Reading to much and experiencing to little
This mistake goes hand in hand with mistake number one. Reading a bunch of articles is the equivalent of going to university, sure its helpful, but the real world is much different to what you think “should” be right. For example, all articles on fat loss preach low carb high protein/fat almost all at least. however through tracking progress i have found that this causes me to lose muscle much faster than fat, so through trial and error i now know that high carb low fat med protein for me works best. That is something i can only learn for myself.
So there we have it 3 mistakes most beginners make, but that dont really get the attention they should.