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10 Ways to Lose Muscle

Discover and correct the workout mistakes that are costing you muscle gains.

9. YOU DON’T DRINK SHAKES
Chugging a protein-and-carb mixture after your workout starts the recovery process immediately, replenishing lost glycogen (your muscles’ energy stores) and providing the nutrients your body requires to repair muscle and grow more of it. Skipping the shake and casually waiting an hour or more for your next meal is like ignoring a cry for help.

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10. YOU DON’T GET ENOUGH REST
Sleep is when muscle repair happens, so getting six or fewer hours of shut-eye a night limits your body’s natural production of crucial muscle-building chemicals, such as growth hormone. Too much activity outside of your workouts, such as playing sports, all-night dance parties, and extra stress—all of which are permissible now and then, but dangerous in excess—also cut into muscle gains. And if you’ve been working out seven days a week, we’ve got another pleasant surprise for you: You’ll lose muscle for sure. Such a high frequency won’t allow for regeneration, and your efforts will be wasted. And no, it doesn’t matter if you’re training different muscle groups each day—you still have the same central nervous system, and it still gets tired of having to deal with major physical exertion every day.

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