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3 Steps to Accelerate Muscle Mass

Yes it’s possible to stimulate testosterone, growth hormone and insulin to stimulate muscle growth with nutrition, training and supplementation. The challenge takes some planning and know-how. Once you get it down, there are a host of benefits including faster muscle growth and fat loss.

Hard work on heavy basic, compound movements––especially those that involve the highest possible neuro-muscular-activation amplifies natural testosterone production. This occurs with movements that cause the body to "move through space" or when the body is moving more than the weight, barbell, or dumbbell moves. Squats, deadlifts, chins, dips, muscle-ups, weighted pushups and weighted handstand pushups are great choices.

It may sound odd, but when you think about it––it makes sense. These movements require you to 'man-up'. That is, they mimic life activities that involve danger, competition or performance of an important task. The body responds more to "the challenge" of climbing over a wall, as in chin-ups or muscle-ups, over a pull-down on a machine. How does your body respond? With a higher degree of nerve-activity—and it puts out more testosterone. Start your workouts with 3 to 5 sets of a few of these movements, performing 4 to 6 reps for maximum testosterone stimulation. Rest 2 to 3 minutes between sets and keep your rep tempo fairly slow––2 seconds up and 4 seconds down.

With testosterone already ‘on-the-scene’ the next step for great increases in muscle mass is to stimulate growth hormone (GH) secretion. Here’s how: by creating a burn. The burn is no stranger to seasoned gym junkies. The burn is associated with lactic acid during exercise has been shown to have a connection with GH stimulation. The most effective way to get a burn in the muscle is through extended-set techniques like these:

• Shock Supersets: Take two exercises for the same body part and superset them for 15 to 25 reps. Take biceps as an example. Do a set of preacher curls using two dumbbells. Immediately after doing 15 to 25 reps step back from the bench (you may have to use lighter dumbbells) and do a set of 15 to 25 alternate dumbbell curls. Repeat this for 3 Shock Supersets.

• X-Reps: These allow you to override nervous system failure and make each set two to five times more effective than conventional sets. They stimulate those highly anabolic fast-twitch fibers. X Reps are short pulses at the optimal position of any exercise—when your nervous system cries "Uncle!" For example, when you can't get another rep on squats, you lower yourself about a third of the way down and do three-to-six-inch partial reps in that position to extend the tension time on the quads' fast twitch fibers.

• Stutter Reps: Using cable rows as an example. Perform 4 to 6 full reps. When you can no longer do another rep have your training partner or spotter help you get the handle to your waist. You're going to let the weight return to the starting position one last time but you're going to fight against it for 15 to 30 seconds. As you fight the weight consciously try to stop it 3 or 4 times during that negative stroke--you won't be able to stop it but each time you attempt to, the rep will 'stutter'.

The most anabolic hormone in the human body is insulin, but it must be utilized at the right time to stimulate radical muscle growth. If not, it will cause you to store fat. Insulin encourages protein synthesis while helping to store amino acids and creatine. The optimal times are the first thing in the morning when you wake up and immediately after your workout… your two anabolic windows.

You can cause an insulin spike, a growth hormone spike and a testosterone spike back to back. Here's how: The first thing in the morning and immediately following your workout take in 20 grams of glutamine or a natural growth hormone secretagogue. Wait about 20-30 minutes and then make a drink consisting of 40-60 grams of high-quality whey or whey plus casein. Add 5 grams of creatine monohydrate, and 3 grams of the Acetyl-L Carnitine Propionate (to stimulate testosterone) and some fruit or dextrose to spike insulin.

At those key times, you want to get nutrients into your bloodstream as fast as possible. After your workout your muscles will soak up nutrients like a dried up sponge. That's when you want to take advantage of the anabolic actions of all three hormones working in unison.

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