Muscles don’t keep growing (or grow at all) if your body is not in an anabolic state. Too many guys fall for the lie that a lot of these supplement companies spew.
No amount of protein powder, creatine, pre-workout, glutamine or whatever supplement they advertise will magically make your body build muscle unless you’re in an anabolic state.
Let’s breakdown how to get your body in an anabolic state and to keep it in that state so you can build muscle and maintain it!
What is exactly an anabolic state?
When your body is an anabolic state, your muscle tissue utilizes energy for growth and maintenance. The energy comes from nutrients extracted from the food sources you consume (i.e., proteins, carbs, etc.).
These food sources are broken down into smaller molecules in order to effectively supply your muscles with energy.
How to get your body in an anabolic state?
There are 4 main ways that your body can reach and maintain an anabolic state:
1. Strenuous exercise
Since the point of body anabolism is to build and maintain muscle tissue, there is no way to be an anabolic state without first stressing your muscles. The best way to induce stress in them is by exercise.
Weightlifting and calisthenics are two of the most effective ways to stress the muscles.
How natural bodybuilders and other fitness –related individuals build muscle is by lifting moderate-heavy to heavy weights between 5 to 15 reps per set.
This style of training breaks down your muscle tissue in which your body enters a catabolic state (i.e., when your muscle tissue is broken down).
Being in a catabolic state actually sets your body up to be in an anabolic state.
2. A well-balanced diet and supplements
When you stress your muscles and enter a catabolic state, you are in need of nourishment in order to advance into the anabolic state. To effectively do so, you need to follow a diet that is very nutritious.
Since your muscles are mostly made up of amino acids (i.e., protein), it needs to be replenished with those nutrients upon conclusion of an intense workout session.
That is why supplements such as protein powder are so coveted in the fitness world.
The quality protein powders contain BCAAs (Brain Chain Amino Acids). BCAA’s are composed mainly of 3 amino acids (leucine, valine, and isoleucine) that reduces protein breakdown and enhances protein synthesis.
In other words, when you bang out those grueling sets of bicep curls, taking a protein powder infused with BCAAs will make sure that your muscles are fully replenished for your next workout.
BCAAs also optimize testosterone levels, a growth hormone that is crucial in creating an anabolic environment.
3. Get at least 8 hours of quality sleep
This step is self-explanatory. A major factor towards getting your body in an anabolic state is getting at least 8 hours of quality sleep. By quality, that means eliminating all distractions at least 30 minutes prior to bedtime.
So instead of falling asleep while watching the 1000th rerun of Sportscenter like always, start getting some real sleep.
4. Minimize Stress
Understandably it is stressful when your kids are asking you a 1000 questions, your spouse asking a million questions and your mother-in-law asking a gazillion questions, but minimizing stress is essential towards creating an anabolic environment.
If you’re stressed out most of the time, your body will produce cortisol. Cortisol is a stress hormone that practically negates anabolic activity while increasing your chances of gaining body fat.
Intense exercises such as lifting moderate to heavy weights helps minimizes stress. In addition, engaging in leisure activities such as yoga, mediating, and spending time with friends helps reduce stress.
Overall, these are the 4 ways to keep your body in an anabolic state. So follow them and pray that your family stops asking you a lot of questions.