If you want to build muscle and get lean, this article will show you how to build lean muscle for women without weights.
Women are no longer scared of being bulky. They know that doing strength training won’t make them look like bodybuilders.
Unfortunately, most women can’t build the lean physiques they want. And it is not because of their genetics. It’s mainly due to bad training techniques and poor nutrition.
The number of people who think they need to lift heavy weights to build muscle also surprises me. You can build lean muscle using nothing but your own body weight.
All you need to do is follow diet and nutrition strategies below.
How to Build Lean Muscle for Women Without Weights
1. Train the big muscle groups
If you are a regular reader, you’ve seen me recommend this strategy several times. Training the big muscle groups builds lean muscle fast.
A simple explanation is that big muscle groups have more growth potential compared to smaller muscles.
You may be happy to find out that glutes are the biggest muscle in the body. Therefore, train them regularly. Here is the best exercise for building glutes.
Other big muscles you should focus on include legs, back, arms, chest, and shoulders.
Spend less time doing ab workouts and more time training the big muscles.
As you continue to train the big muscle groups, your abs will develop even without doing ab exercises.
2. Eat enough protein
You probably know that protein is essential for muscle growth. Therefore, eat protein at every meal.
Get most of your protein from solid foods, not protein shakes. Some of the best protein sources include eggs, beans, lean meat, fish, legumes, and so on. Here are the healthiest protein sources according to nutrition experts.
Most studies recommend getting 30 percent of your total daily calories from protein foods.
You also need to consume adequate amounts of carbs to keep you energized during your workouts. Remember to avoid processed carbs.
Lastly, eat healthy fats in every meal to boost your energy levels and control hunger
A good diet composition would be 30 percent protein, 30 percent fat, and 40 percent carbs. You may also want to add these muscle-building recipes to your diet.
3. Do challenging exercises
You have to do challenging exercises if you want to build lean muscle. Muscles need to be challenged to grow.
Don’t do easy exercises. If you can do 15 reps nonstop, that exercise is easy. Choose bodyweight exercises you can perform a maximum of 10 reps.
Once you can do 12 reps of an exercise, advance to a more challenging exercise.
It is very important to train progressively. Advance to more challenging workouts after every two weeks.
Avoid doing the same workout for a month.
4. Don’t starve yourself
You may want to maintain a huge calorie deficit, especially if you are trying to lose weight but low-calorie intake can hinder muscle growth and lower your workout performance.
If you want to build lean muscle while losing weight, maintain a moderate deficit of 300-500 calories.
Skinny women who want to build muscle should maintain calorie surplus of 300-500 calories. If you are happy with your weight, eat at maintenance. Calculate your daily caloric needs here.
5. Do full body exercises
Full body exercises increase lean muscle fast because they activate many muscle groups at the same time.
In fact, doing a burpees only workout can build lean muscle faster than doing abs or arm workouts.
Now, I’m not saying you should never do isolation exercises. However, if you are just getting started, focus on full body exercises. You can do isolation exercises later after you’ve built a substantial amount of lean muscle.
6. Go easy on the cardio
Cardio has many benefits but it won’t help you build lean muscle. In fact, cardio overtraining can lead to muscle loss.
Stick to short cardio sessions of less than 30 minutes.
You are better off doing high-intensity exercises such as hill sprints. HIIT workouts build muscle and improve cardiovascular health.
7. Focus on getting stronger
Don’t forget this! Focusing on strength can help you stay consistent with your workouts.
You see, most people get discouraged when they don’t see muscles after a few weeks of exercising. What they don’t realize is that it takes time for the muscle to grow, especially for women.
Gaining strength can encourage you to keep exercising even when your muscles don’t grow fast. And the good news is you can gain strength after one week of training.
If you focus on building strength, you will be able to do your first pull-up in no time.
8. Be patient
Muscles don’t grow instantly. Don’t expect to have toned arms and thighs after exercising for two weeks.
You can’t fail to build muscle if you exercise consistently and follow the tips above.
If you don’t want to build lean muscle using regular bodyweight exercises, use this easy kickboxing plan to transform your physique.