How Many Times A Week Should I Workout To Gain Muscle

What your goals are will determine how frequently you should exercise if you are a bodybuilder. 3-5 days a week should be plenty if you want to increase your strength and muscle mass.


But if you want to lose weight or get fitter overall, exercise less frequently (2–3 times a week) and with higher-intensity exercises like HIIT.


Three to five days a week is the recommended amount of exercise for bodybuilders who want to see their muscles become bigger and stronger as quickly as possible. You'll be able to gain weight and have that desirable lean appearance thanks to this.


1. Use compound movements as a foundation.

Squats, deadlifts, and pull-ups are examples of compound actions that call for large quantities of muscle to be engaged simultaneously.


Compound motions also enable us to often increase the metabolic stress (loads) placed on the body, which has been found to promote muscular hypertrophy and growth.


2. Employ active recovery

Not every gym session needs to be a high-impact, high-intensity event when you go six out of seven days. According to Tripp, lighter days are also vital. "Your workouts don't always have to be demanding on your body to see benefits," he adds.


For your body, enjoying an active recovery day—such as one spent practising yoga, hiking, or doing mobility exercises—is like pressing a reset button. The period between your diligent attempts is actually when adaptation occurs, according to Tripp.


He advises scheduling at least one complete rest and/or recovery day each week to assist your body to recuperate from the strain of exercise and, in turn, increase your level of fitness.


3. Take Regular Rest Periods

Despite the fact that you are pressed for time, you must be aware that providing yourself time to rest and recuperate between sets has been demonstrated to improve your capacity to move weight, carry out repetitions of higher quality, and maximum growth.


Your ability to move moderate to heavy loads for sufficient rep ranges, maintain good alignment, and exert tension on the muscles will be hampered if the rest period is too brief.


Verify if the muscle is wearing out rather than your heart or other body organs. You need to rest for a longer period of time if leg presses leave you gasping for air rather than with your quads screaming in pain.


4. Mix Up Your Exercises

Long-term fitness improvements won't result from repeating the same workout cycle at the same intensity, according to Tripp. Your body will gradually adjust to the stress, which is why. And when that occurs, you'll likely experience a slowdown in your progress, a plateau, and burnout.


Variation is essential to maintain gains. Cross-training, which includes rotating your strength, cardio, and HIIT exercises, brings variety and balance to your week, according to Tripp. According to the American Council on Exercise, adding a little variation to your weekly activities also helps you lose weight and reduces the likelihood that you'll get hurt.


Guidelines for avoiding soreness

After exercise, calm down to avoid DOMS. In contrast to a warm-up, a cool-down involves gradually lowering your heart rate and returning your body to a resting condition.


Start with a five to ten-minute easy walk or spin on a stationary bike. The next five to ten minutes of stretching can also aid in the removal of lactic acid from the body. When you exercise, lactic acid builds up and may give you a burning sensation in your muscles. When you get rid of it, you'll be able to recover more quickly from your subsequent workout.


After working out, you can also use a foam roller to alleviate any tension.


These recovery exercises may aid in preventing or reducing soreness in the days following your muscular ache:


  • yoga
  • stretching or resistance band exercises
  • walking or easy hiking
  • swimming laps
  • easy cycling


It's crucial to start off slowly while beginning a new workout regimen or trying a new kind of exercise for the first time. Exercise frequency and intensity should be gradually increased to reduce soreness. And never begin a new fitness regimen without first getting your doctor's okay.


You can typically start working out again a few days to a week after recovery, depending on your level of fitness and how painful you are. Create a safe and successful exercise plan for you by working with a trained fitness professional.


5. Focus on Quality Rather Than Quantity


Despite the fact that volume is crucial for muscular building, it's important to keep in mind that more isn't always better. Your main objective should be to complete as few sets as you can while still inducing as much muscle soreness and fatigue as you can (while adhering to rep ranges). Controlling the loads, performing them throughout their entire range of motion, and giving each set your all will help you achieve this.


Many people make the error of overtraining, which results in subpar sets and reps with insufficient focus and intensity. Instead than performing a large number of subpar reps, concentrate on doing things perfectly.


Generally speaking, if a muscle is not working and tiring out after 2-3 sets, you may not be regulating the weight, not performing the entire range of motion, or not training with a load that is difficult enough (assuming you are training within the 5-25 rep range). Perform 8–15 reps for the greatest outcomes.


What advantages are there?


"Active" recuperation might be helpful if you're just a little sore. It might also feel pleasing:


  • Warm up tense muscles.
  • perform light resistance training, such as exercises for the core.
  • stroll or swim as low-intensity cardio exercises.


Additionally, you can concentrate on the muscles you haven't worked before. For instance, the day following a run, include an arm weight routine.


Light recovery exercise may have additional health advantages besides just making you feel good. Walking or simple cycling are examples of mobility, or full-range, activities that increase the amount of blood flowing through the muscles. This increase in blood flow can hasten your recovery from pain. So long as you don't overwork or put more strain on the muscles, that is.


Exercises for recovery might possibly be as advantageous as receiving a massage. In one study, 48 hours after performing upper trapezius workouts, a group of subjects were compared for discomfort.


After the activity, some participants received 10-minute massages. Others engaged in resistance band workouts. More research is required, however the researchers found that both recovery methods were equally helpful in relieving DOMS symptoms briefly.


6.Press firmly for the final few sets.

Although it is not always essential, fatigue training can be a crucial accelerator for muscular growth.


I usually advise a lifter to complete the first two sets with a load that enables them to complete all the required repetitions while still being able to complete 2-3 quality reps (reps in the tank).


In the latter set, I instruct them to stop when their technical failure occurs, which frequently happens before they mentally wish to stop. The objective is to perform solid reps to failure, not to injure oneself. The load selection key is thus created.


What dangers exist?

Exercises for gentle recuperation can be helpful. However, overtraining can be bad for your health and even dangerous.


It's vital to stop exercising and give your body some downtime if you suffer any of the following symptoms. Inform your doctor if you experience any of the following:


  • higher resting heart rate,
  • depressive or mood changes,
  • more frequent colds or other illnesses,
  • overuse injuries,
  • joint or muscle discomfort,
  • continual exhaustion,
  • sleeplessness,
  • decreased appetite,
  • deterioration of athletic ability or only little improvement even after rest;


7. Change Up Your Focus Muscles


Your specific fitness objectives will determine how frequently you should exercise and which muscle groups you should train. Nevertheless, it's not a good idea to focus on the same group of muscles during each workout.


For instance, Tripp claims that six days of upper-body strength training are a formula for overstress and potential injury. Managing the strain that exercise puts on your muscles is crucial. Tripp advises at least 24 to 48 hours of rest following strenuous strength training in order for the body to heal tissues before challenging the same muscles once more.


Your best bet for safe and efficient training is to rotate the target muscle groups. So if you work out your upper body on Monday, work out your legs on Tuesday. This provides plenty of time for your firearms to heal and get stronger.


8. Effectively Warm Up

Warm-up exercises are frequently rushed through (or skipped).


Not only does this increase your risk of injury, which will undoubtedly hinder your aims, but it also prevents you from warming up so that you can attack the game head-on right away.


Spend the first 10 minutes warming up and doing the movement drills for that day's training.


This will improve your performance and lower your chance of injury (and increasing performance means you can train harder).


9. Maintain Weight Control

To build muscle and maintain the stress on the muscles, movement must be controlled throughout the entire range of motion.


Exercises with controlled eccentric phases, such as bench pressing with the weight lowered to the chest on a 2-second count, can be extremely effective in maximising muscle growth and minimising injury concerns.


When completing a movement, imagine how the muscles are being used, how they are being stretched by the weight, and how the muscles are becoming tense.


10. Even though lifting heavy isn't a priority, you still need to do it anyhow!

You've heard me preach about controlling the reps, not using momentum, doing them in the entire range of motion, and not worrying about how much weight you lift up until this point.


Despite this, you must continue to train with difficult loads. While lifting excessively light loads can offer you a "workout," it won't be the best for particular muscle areas to maximise muscle growth.


Due to this, I advise performing 8–10 rep ranges on some days and 12–15 or even 15-20 rep ranges on other days. Using weights that are HEAVY for that range, you should be hitting failure or being very close to it on the higher rep sets.


It is most certainly too light if you employ a weight that you "could" lift by more than 25 to 30 pounds under extreme circumstances.


Exercise Routine for Six Days a Week

With a variety of strength, cardio, and HIIT routines, Tripp's example one-week plan is created to maximise your fitness gains while providing you with a balance of hard, medium, and easy days.


  • Sunday: Day of Rest. Spend this time stretching, foam rolling, walking, or taking a complete vacation from exercising.


  • Monday: Core and upper body strength. Work your abs while performing push and pull motions with free weights, your own body weight, or weight machines. 30 to 60 minutes should be allocated overall.


  • Tuesday: Low-Intensity Cardio. Exercise your lower body for 30 to 60 minutes at a moderate effort on an elliptical, while running, or while cycling.


  • Wednesday: Body-Wide HIIT. This 30-minute total-body workout ought to focus more on strength and endurance, with lots of repetitions and light to moderate resistance.


  • Thursday: Simple cardio. Walk quickly for 30 minutes, ride your bike easily, or light jog.


  • Friday: Core strength and lower body. Combine ab exercises with lower body push and pull exercises that utilise free weights, your own weight, weight machines, or both. 30 to 60 minutes should be allocated overall.


  • Saturday: Active Recuperation Participate in a simple yoga session, light aerobics, a quick stroll, or a mobility circuit. Set a goal of 20 to 30 minutes.


What to remember

If you're hurting after working out, it's generally fine to do light recovery exercises like walking or swimming. They might even help you heal more quickly and be advantageous. But if you're feeling tired or in pain, it's crucial to take a break.


If the pain persists after a few days or you suspect an injury, consult a doctor.


Even seasoned athletes take breaks occasionally. Your performance will improve the next time you work out if you incorporate rest and recuperation days into your regular exercise schedule.

Can I gain muscle without using weights?

Yes, you can gain muscle without weights. Bodyweight exercises like push-ups, pull-ups, squats, and lunges can effectively build muscle. However, as you get stronger, you may need to increase the challenge by adding more repetitions and sets or using weights to continue seeing progress.

How long should I stick to a workout routine before changing it?

It's generally recommended to stick to a workout routine for about 4-6 weeks before changing it. This time frame allows your body to adapt and grow stronger in response to the specific exercises. Changing your routine periodically can prevent plateaus and continue to challenge your muscles in different ways.

Should I adjust my diet to grow muscle?

Yes, diet plays a significant role in muscle gain. Consuming enough protein is important, as it's the main building block for your muscles. Carbohydrates are also essential as they provide energy for your workouts. A balanced diet with a slight caloric surplus is often recommended for muscle gain.

How long should I rest between workouts to grow muscle?

Rest is just as important as exercise when it comes to muscle gain. For optimal muscle recovery and growth, it's recommended to rest each muscle group for 48-72 hours between workouts. This means if you worked your chest on Monday, you should wait until at least Wednesday before targeting it again.

What's the ideal muscle-building workout?

Aim for a workout session lasting around 45 minutes to an hour for muscle gain. During this time, focus on strength training exercises that target different muscle groups. Include compound exercises such as squats, deadlifts, and bench presses which work for multiple muscle groups at once and thus stimulate more muscle growth.

Frequenly Asked Questions about gaining muscles

Scroll to Top