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Doctor Suggests 4 Unusual Ways to Speed Up Muscle Growth (That You’ve Probably Never Tried)

 Written by 

Julien Raby

 Last updated on 


Think you know everything about building muscle? Think again. Dr. Eric Berg, a leading expert in healthy ketosis and intermittent fasting, reveals four surprising strategies to accelerate muscle growth, going beyond the usual advice of exercise and protein.

Get ready to discover:

Speed-Up-Muscle-Growth
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  • A natural compound that supercharges your workouts and speeds up recovery.
  • A chilling technique that activates muscle-building genes and burns more calories.
  • A strategic eating pattern that boosts growth hormone and enhances nutrient absorption.
  • An amino acid that removes the brakes on muscle growth and improves blood flow.

If you’re ready to take your muscle-building journey to the next level, keep reading to uncover these groundbreaking methods.

Can we speed up muscle growth?

Building muscle is essential for movement, posture, and maintaining metabolism, especially as you age. While resistance training and protein consumption are well-known methods to boost muscle growth, here are four surprising ways to speed up the process.

1- Creatine Supplementation

What is Creatine?

Creatine is a compound found naturally in muscle cells and certain foods like meat and fish. It helps your muscles produce energy during high-intensity exercise or heavy lifting. By enhancing your ability to perform such exercises, creatine indirectly promotes muscle growth.

How Creatine Works

When you engage in short bursts of intense activity, your muscles use creatine phosphate to produce ATP (adenosine triphosphate), the primary energy carrier in cells. This process allows you to maintain peak performance for longer periods, thereby increasing your workout intensity and volume, which are crucial for muscle hypertrophy.

Recommended Dosage

To maximize creatine’s benefits, follow these guidelines:

  • Loading Phase: Take 20 grams per day for 5 days. Split this into 4 doses of 5 grams each to avoid gastrointestinal discomfort.
  • Maintenance Phase: After the loading phase, take 3 grams per day to maintain elevated creatine levels in your muscles.

Julien’s note: I would actually stick to 5 grams per day

Cycling between the loading and maintenance phases can help sustain muscle creatine levels, ensuring you have the energy to perform high-intensity workouts consistently.

Benefits of Creatine

  • Enhanced Performance: Increases your ability to perform high-intensity exercises.
  • Muscle Growth: Facilitates greater workout intensity and volume.
  • Improved Recovery: Helps muscles recover faster between sets and workouts.

Considerations

While creatine is generally safe for most people, it’s important to stay hydrated and follow the recommended dosage. Excessive intake can lead to digestive issues.

Incorporating creatine into your supplement routine can significantly boost your muscle growth efforts by enhancing your workout performance and recovery.

2- Cold Therapy

What is Cold Therapy?

Cold therapy involves exposing your body to cold temperatures through methods like cold showers, cold immersion baths, or cryotherapy. This exposure can help boost muscle growth by inducing beneficial stress responses in the body.

How Cold Therapy Works

When exposed to cold, your body works hard to maintain its core temperature. This process involves burning more calories and activating brown fat, which is more metabolically active than white fat. Additionally, cold exposure has been shown to increase the expression of genes related to muscle growth and protein synthesis.

Benefits of Cold Therapy

  • Increased Caloric Burn: Helps burn more calories, aiding in fat loss and muscle definition.
  • Enhanced Muscle Gene Expression: Stimulates the genes responsible for muscle growth.
  • Reduced Inflammation: Decreases inflammation, promoting faster recovery and less muscle soreness.

Methods of Cold Therapy

  • Cold Showers: Regularly taking cold showers can help acclimate your body to cold stress.
  • Cold Immersion Baths: Submerging in cold water for a few minutes can provide more intense cold exposure.
  • Cryotherapy: This involves standing in a chamber with extremely cold air for a short duration, typically a few minutes.

Important Considerations

Initial exposure to cold might temporarily decrease muscle size due to the contraction of blood vessels and muscles. However, during the recovery phase, muscles often grow larger and stronger. It’s important to use cold therapy intermittently and not excessively to avoid potential adverse effects.

By incorporating cold therapy into your routine, you can enhance your muscle growth efforts through increased caloric burn, improved muscle gene expression, and reduced inflammation.

3- Intermittent Fasting for Muscle Growth

How Intermittent Fasting Works

Intermittent fasting (IF) involves cycling between periods of eating and fasting. This method has gained popularity for its potential health benefits, including muscle growth and fat loss.

Benefits of Intermittent Fasting

  • Increased Growth Hormone Levels: Fasting significantly boosts growth hormone production, which plays a critical role in muscle growth and fat metabolism.
  • Improved Insulin Sensitivity: By reducing the frequency of eating, IF helps improve insulin sensitivity, allowing for better nutrient absorption by muscles.
  • Enhanced Fat Loss: During fasting periods, the body shifts to burning fat for energy, helping reduce overall body fat and reveal muscle definition.

Effective Strategies for Intermittent Fasting

  • 16/8 Method: Fast for 16 hours and eat during an 8-hour window. For example, eating between noon and 8 PM and fasting until noon the next day.
  • 5:2 Method: Eat normally for five days a week and restrict calorie intake to 500-600 calories on two non-consecutive days.
  • Eat-Stop-Eat: Fast for 24 hours once or twice a week.

Combining IF with Muscle-Building Workouts

  • Workout Timing: For optimal muscle growth, schedule your workouts towards the end of your fasting period. This can help maximize fat burning and growth hormone release.
  • Nutrient Timing: After a workout, break your fast with a meal rich in protein and healthy carbohydrates to support muscle recovery and growth.

Important Considerations

  • Health Status: Intermittent fasting is best suited for individuals in good health. Those with chronic health conditions should consult a healthcare provider before starting any fasting regimen.
  • Balanced Nutrition: Ensure your meals during eating periods are nutrient-dense, providing adequate protein, healthy fats, and carbohydrates to support muscle growth and overall health.

4- Arginine Supplementation

What is Arginine?

Arginine is an amino acid that plays a vital role in various physiological processes, including the synthesis of proteins and the production of nitric oxide. This compound is crucial for muscle growth and recovery.

How Arginine Works

Arginine promotes muscle growth by increasing growth hormone levels. It does this by inhibiting somatostatin, a hormone that suppresses the release of growth hormone. Higher growth hormone levels can enhance muscle protein synthesis and recovery, leading to increased muscle mass.

Benefits of Arginine

  • Increased Growth Hormone Levels: By inhibiting somatostatin, arginine removes the brakes on growth hormone production, facilitating muscle growth.
  • Improved Blood Flow: Nitric oxide production helps dilate blood vessels, improving blood flow to muscles during workouts, which can enhance performance and recovery.
  • Enhanced Protein Synthesis: Supports the creation of new proteins, essential for muscle repair and growth.

Recommended Dosage

  • Daily Intake: 3 to 6 grams of arginine per day.
  • Timing: Take arginine on an empty stomach, ideally 30 minutes before workouts, to maximize its effectiveness.

Effectiveness

Studies have shown that arginine supplementation can help increase muscle mass and even support growth in children with growth deficiencies. For athletes and bodybuilders, arginine can provide the extra boost needed to enhance muscle growth and performance.

Important Considerations

While arginine supplementation is generally safe, it’s essential to adhere to the recommended dosage. High doses can cause gastrointestinal discomfort and other side effects. Always consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.

Incorporating arginine into your supplement routine can significantly enhance muscle growth by increasing growth hormone levels, improving blood flow, and supporting protein synthesis.

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References:

  • https://www.mdpi.com/2072-6643/12/8/2349?ck_subscriber_id=588626133
  • https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0002916523239209
  • https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33306586/
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8067763/
  • https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0306456521000978
  • https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/biochemistry-genetics-and-molecular-biology/lipid-storage
  • https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09637486.2020.1868412
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