Losing strength and muscle mass can be frustrating, especially if you’ve been sidelined by an injury or illness. But the good news is that it’s possible to rebuild your strength and muscle quickly with the right strategies.
In this article, we’ll explore some of the best ways to rebuild strength and muscle quickly, based on expert advice and the latest research.
- Start with light weights and high reps
When you’re coming back from an injury or illness, it’s important to start slowly and gradually increase your workload. This means starting with light weights and high reps, rather than jumping back into heavy lifting right away.
According to Dr. Stuart Phillips, a professor of kinesiology at McMaster University in Canada, using lighter weights and higher reps can help you rebuild strength and muscle faster than using heavier weights and lower reps.
“High reps with lighter weights is the optimal strategy for rebuilding muscle,” says Dr. Phillips. “This approach allows you to lift with good form and get the muscle activation you need without putting undue stress on your joints or risking further injury.”
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- Incorporate compound exercises
Compound exercises are movements that involve multiple muscle groups and joints, such as squats, deadlifts, and bench press. These exercises are more efficient at building strength and muscle mass than isolation exercises that only target one muscle group at a time.
According to a study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, compound exercises are also effective at increasing muscle activation and promoting muscle growth.
“Compound exercises are a great way to rebuild strength and muscle quickly,” says fitness expert and personal trainer, Brian Nguyen. “Not only do they work multiple muscle groups at once, but they also help improve your overall strength and stability, which can help prevent future injuries.”
- Increase your protein intake
Protein is essential for muscle growth and repair, and it’s especially important when you’re trying to rebuild strength and muscle quickly. According to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, increasing your protein intake can help speed up the recovery process and promote muscle growth.
To ensure you’re getting enough protein, aim to consume at least 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight per day. Good sources of protein include lean meats, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy, and plant-based protein sources like beans, lentils, and tofu.
- Get enough rest and recovery
Rest and recovery are essential for rebuilding strength and muscle quickly. When you’re recovering from an injury or illness, your body needs time to repair and rebuild damaged tissue. This means getting enough sleep, taking rest days, and giving your body time to recover between workouts.
According to a study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, taking at least 48 hours of rest between workouts can help improve muscle recovery and prevent overtraining.
“Rest and recovery are just as important as exercise when it comes to rebuilding strength and muscle,” says Nguyen. “Make sure you’re getting enough sleep, taking rest days, and listening to your body when it tells you it needs a break.”
- Consider working with a physical therapist or trainer
If you’re recovering from an injury or illness, working with a physical therapist or certified personal trainer can help you rebuild strength and muscle safely and effectively.
A physical therapist can help you develop a personalized rehabilitation program that addresses your specific needs and limitations, while a personal trainer can help you design a workout plan that supports your goals and helps you avoid further injury.
“Working with a professional can help you rebuild strength and muscle more quickly and safely than trying to go it alone,” says Nguyen. “They can provide guidance and support, as well as adjust your