What is muscle hypertrophy and how to get it? – The Mega Guide

The muscle hypertrophy refers to significantly increase muscle mass, which in turn is directly related to the force. This depends on various factors such as:

  • The number and size of myofibrils: these are the ones that make up the muscle fibers, which increase the length and thickness.
  • The number of sarcomeres in series: when the number of these elements increases, the speed of contraction increases. When the muscles are worked in amplitude it is propitiated the increase of these, the opposite of muscular work in weak amplitudes.
  • The development of muscle fascia and other tissues, produced as a result of the increase in the size of the myofibrils, which in turn allow the increase of cartilage, tendons, and ligaments.
  • Gender: the gender greatly influences the growth of muscle fibers, the muscle circumference is much higher in men than in women due to testosterone levels.

How to get muscle hypertrophy

This increase in muscle mass is mainly due to overcompensation of protein content and muscle recovery. To achieve this you need to follow an anaerobic exercise routine, lifting in large quantities, however, it is important to emphasize that excessive hypertrophy training can cause a decrease in muscle capillarization and contraction speed.

We must take into account some basic principles, such as rest, repetitions by series, time under tension or cadence, among others. Next, I show you the basic principles to achieve muscle hypertrophy:

Series and repetitions

The appropriate number of repetitions is between 8 and 12, with loads between 70-85% of the 1RM. We can include phases in which we increase the intensity by varying the heavier loads or fewer repetitions.

Training the failure produces muscle damage and the body responds by increasing protein synthesis to replenish the tissue.

Per day, the number of repetitions and the most appropriate muscle group ranges from 40 to 70. Per week, it usually ranges from 80 to 210 total repetitions.

Training frequency

Depending on the intensity, you can train the same muscle group with a frequency of 2, up to 4 times per week. My recommendation is that you always leave at least 48 hours between workouts of the same muscle group.

Adequate rest between series

There should not be much rest between series since metabolic stress is favored (it produces cytosines that activate satellite cells, accelerating the regeneration of damaged tissue). The adequate time for rest is between 1 to 2 minutes between sets.

It is also necessary to rest when sleeping, the right thing is an 8-hour break to let the muscle growth during the night.

Adjustment of routines

70% of the routine should be focused on the survey between 65-85% of the 1RM.

The time of muscular tension

The time that the muscle is under tension favors the fibers of fast and slow contraction, this helps the muscular gain. To maximize performance in sports or a specific discipline, it is advisable to train fast-twitch fibers.

Cadence time

For the eccentric part of the movement, the recommended cadence time is 2 to 4 seconds, while for the concentric part it is 1 to 3 seconds. This is the average time to produce muscle damage and metabolic stress.

Multi-joint exercises

These exercises can be performed with a high frequency in the week, so it is a way to facilitate muscle hypertrophy, mainly for beginners. For people who have already been in the gym for a while and can no longer be considered primary, isolation training, including mono-joint exercises, is necessary. In this post, I explain what are the 3 basic exercises.

How much is the average muscle that can be gained

This is a doubt that many people are starting to train in the gym.

For people who are starting to train, as an indicative number it can be said that you can get to gain 10-12 kg of muscle mass the first year. From there, the rate of muscle growth slows down considerably and it is becoming more complicated to gain muscle.

Muscle growth depends on many factors among which are nutrition, resilience, training quality and genetics.

Throughout a lifetime it is considered that you can gain up to 25 kg of muscle mass.

Hypertrophy according to the types of muscle fibers

The hypertrophy of the muscle has been seen in fibers type I and type II, although the gain in these second is much higher since they are genetically designed for this. In this way, it can be inferred that those people with a greater quantity of type II fibers will be able to obtain greater hypertrophy than another person with a greater proportion of type I.

Techniques to gain muscle quickly

The use of these advanced techniques is focused on those who already have a considerable time of training, at least 2-3 years, in case of being stuck. Some of these techniques are:

  • Forced repetitions: consists of using more weight of the supported, with the help of a person to complete a certain number of repetitions. The purpose of this technique is to increase metabolic stress.
  • Cluster Series: it is a technique for advanced athletes, to obtain muscle and maintains speed and strength. It consists of performing more series and fewer repetitions, with less rest time.

Tips to keep in mind to gain muscle mass

If you consider yourself a beginner, keep these tips in mind when you start a program to gain muscle mass:

  • Increase the amount of protein in the diet: as we know, protein is essential for muscle formation. Supplements can help, although maintaining a good diet may be enough. In this article, I show you how to structure a diet to gain muscle mass.
  • Train the fault: if you want to increase mass, you may not make the series enough. The idea is to carry the repetitions until reaching the muscular failure.
  • Lift enough weight for the muscles to work: to achieve hypertrophy of the muscle, it is necessary to lift a load high enough. An undemanding weight will only help define, tone and burn calories.
  • The classic method of pre-exhaustion can work: when looking for muscle construction, it is rare to perform isolation exercises, but being integrated into an adequate hypertrophy program can be really effective.
  • Do cardio, but do not exaggerate: high-intensity cardiovascular exercises stimulate the growth of muscles, for example, running short races. However, it is something to be careful of, because if we abuse these exercises we can start to burn the muscle.




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