Beginning Your Bodybuilding Journey - The Absolute Basics

Beginning Your Bodybuilding Journey - The Absolute Basics

The hardest part of Bodybuilding is knowing where to start. This article is dedicated to the absolute basics of both diet and exercise and may be a little more boring for experienced or seasoned gym goers. 

Bodybuilding can be split into two parts, diet and exercise. While diet, in my opinion, is the more important factor of the two, exercise is very necessary to accomplish the overall goal. Without dicipline in both areas it will be hard to get as cut as possible especially if you do not have the natural born genetics for the sport.

Exercising For The Sport Of Bodybuilding

As stated above, exercise is not as important in my opinion, as getting your diet in check but without it you will never get as cut as your genetics allow. Consistency, as with everything else in this sport, is key. Be persistent and constant with your workouts and you will see some form of progress. From there you can start to incorporate new tactics in an attempt to further your progress even more.

Weight Training vs Cardio

Your training can be split into two sections, weight training and cardio. Weight training is more what bodybuilding is known for. It's the action of using weights as resistance. Cardio exercise on the other hand is any form of cardiovascular exercise. This could be running, the stair master, or circut training.

Weight training is one of the most important aspects of your overall training. When working out, weight training actually tears down your muscles causing them to grow back even stronger. This is why weight training is so strongly emphasised in the sport.

Depending on where you are in your training, cardio may not be necessary. However, it is important if you are looking to lose body fat for a cut. 

Sets and Reps

When weight training it's important to split things up into sets and reps. For each exercise, most people do 3 sets. The standard number of repititions in each set is 10 however depending on your goals you can raise and lower that number. The goal for each exercise is to hit 10 reps 3 times.

The amount of weight you use should make it a struggle to hit the 10th rep. Obviously as you become more experienced you can try different tactics such as super setting, drop sets and more!

Finding A Good Split

When building your workout, you have to make sure you are hitting all of the major muscle groups. The main muscle groups that most people focus on when training are chest, back, legs, arms, and shoulders. Abs can be thrown in either at the end of the workout or the beginning of the workout.

You can split it up by however many days you plan on dedicating to the gym. For instance:

3 Day Split
Monday: Legs and Shoulders
Wednesday: Chest and Arms
Friday: Back and Abs

4 Day Split
Monday: Legs
Tuesday: Chest and Abs
Thursday: Back
Friday: Arms and Abs

5 Day Split
Monday: Legs
Tuseday: Chest
Wednesday: Shoulders
Thursday: Back
Friday: Arms

Figuring Out Your Diet For Bodybuilding

Diet as I've stated in previous articles, is the most important and difficult aspect of the sport. Honing in your diet and figuring out exactly what works for you takes a lot of trial and error. A good way to start is to write down everything you eat on a day to day basis.

Everything from the soda you drink to the condiments on your food. Write it down and compare over the week. This exercise will really open your eyes to the amount of calories you eat on a day to day basis. Once you've written everything down you can get a close look at the number of calories you eat and from there you can figure out the number of carbs, protein, and fat you are putting into your diet.

There should be a surplus of protein with less carbs than usual. You can also use our macros calculator to figure out exactly how much you should be eating on a day to day basis.

For more information and tips, visit our diet section.

The author's views are entirely his or her own and may not always reflect the views of Bodybuilding Nation.
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