If you are a teen and have just started bodybuilding then it is a must that you read this article. We want to show you how to get the most out of you training and to help you make the maximum amount of muscle gains, in the shortest amount of time.
First, lets figure out why you have started to work out, or why you are interested in bodybuilding? This is an important question for you to answer. Is it because:
- You think that if you get muscles, you will get more chicks?
- You have extra time on your hands, and want to do something constructive
- You want to improve your athletic performance for your other various sports
- You want to bulk up because you are sick of being skinny
- You are concerned about being healthy and losing fat/getting in shape.
Guess what... they are all good, normal, reasonable, healthy reasons for working out. But what are the WRONG reasons for a teen to workout? How about an EXCESSIVELY poor body image! It is natural for teens to have a low self-esteem and body image. It is not healthy to over obsess about it. You're young, have some fun, try not to worry about your physique (or lack thereof) and do things you won't be able to do when you're working 50+ hours/week for the rest of your lives!
The fact that you are reading this means that you are taking a responsible and healthy approach to your lifting. Good Job!
Now Lets Get Started!!!
To gain muscle you need to eat LOTS of protein. About 1g/lb of bodyweight if you are at a relatively normal bodyfat level. But here is the most important part... the protein needs to be spread out over 5-7 meals! This is difficult if you are in school, so what are you supposed to do?
Eat a big breakfast (cereal, protein drink/carnation instant breakfast or eggs and toast, or low-fat yogurt & bagel and cream cheese, etc.
Have a snack between classes about 3 hrs later such as a yogurt, or an apple/cereal bar and a glass of milk.
Have a protein-rich lunch consisting of a tuna/salmon sandwich, chicken salad sandwich, turkey sub, etc. Also through in some veggies to make your parents/guardians happy!
A few hours later, have another snack - remember your protein!
Dinner time... enjoy a full, complete healthy meal.
Before bed, have one last protein feeding - chicken breast, protein drink, yogurt etc.
Your parents will hate this, always make comments and crack jokes about the number of times that you eat, and how much you eat... don't let it get to you!
These are just general guidelines! The faster your metabolism, the more you will need to eat and the less strict you will need to be. For example, a 17 yr old boy who is "underweight" could have a cheeseburger and fries for lunch occasionally and not worry about getting fat!
Girls: to get in shape and "toned" your goal may be to lose bodyfat. However keep this in mind... an additional 10 lbs of muscle will burn an extra 500 calories per day! This is without any cardio at all! So in order to gain muscle you must eat protein and eat it frequently as well as carbs. So for god's sake... don't starve yourself! This is probably the biggest reason why young women don't see results.
Stick to basic, compound movements. (Bench press, squats, deadlifts, bent-over rows, etc.) This is good advice for anyone, but especially good for beginners and teens. You need to build a foundation for which to build upon. These "big" movements will help you do this. In one year, you will be much better off that that guy who only does bicep curls, tricep pushdowns and side laterals. (you know the type) You can do some of these movements, but do them AFTER the compound movements. Also try to limit the workout to 1 hr. There is no reason to spend much more time in the gym.
Get adequate rest to recover between workouts. A 3-day split is probably a good option - Monday, Wednesday, Friday for example.
SLEEP! You need tons of sleep in adolescence normally, let alone a training one. 8-10 hours would be good! Refer your parents to this site if they start to hassle you!
Have Fun! Switch up routines so that they don't get boring and so your body won't adapt.
Things to Remeber:
In order to see results you will need to stick with your program. I am not talking about for days/weeks, I am talking about months and years. You should see quick gains for the first few months, but after this the progress may slow - this is normal! Dedicate yourself to this healthy and rewarding lifestyle and you will see results in the long-run.