Biogen Wellness Pack

Muscle Building Principles: Train. Eat. Sleep. Repeat

Train. Eat. Sleep. Repeat. It’s a popular phrase that you’ve probably seen before on social media feeds, motivational memes, and on gym shirts and vests.

It is actually a pretty accurate summary of all the elements that go into building bigger, stronger muscles. But how sure are you that you’re getting the basics right?

The anabolic process in a nutshell

At the most basic level, weight training sessions at the gym break down muscle fibres. We then rebuild that muscle with adequate protein from food and supplements, sufficient rest between sessions and adequate sleep. 

While that is a pretty accurate summary, there are important intricacies and nuances to this approach, and you need to nail each element in this process to get the best results. 

When it comes to your training, simply hitting the weights room isn’t enough.

Are you applying the appropriate mechanical loading to trigger growth in muscle fibres?

The right combination of intensity (the amount of weight you lift) and the volume (the number of reps and sets you complete) will trigger the appropriate response.

Add too many plates and your muscles will fail before you’ve reached the ideal rep range for muscle growth. While you’ll get stronger, you should aim to lift within the 8-12 rep range to trigger the right muscle-building response.

In contrast, if you lift a lighter weight that lets you hit 12-15 reps each set, you won’t create the stimulus you need to get the best strength or muscle-building benefits.

After your training session ends, our bodies get to work creating complex muscle proteins from simpler ‘building blocks’ known as amino acids. 

Known technically as hypertrophy, the most important element at this stage in the muscle-building process is feeding your muscles with all the amino acids it needs to support the muscle-building process. 

There are 22 standard amino acids, 20 of which are crucial for muscle growth and repair. Your body can make 11 of these by combining specific amino acids together.

However, there nine amino acids that your body cannot create from other compounds, which are classified as essential amino acids (EAA).

The nine EAAs include:

  1. Histidine
  2. Isoleucine
  3. Leucine
  4. Lysine
  5. Methionine
  6. Phenylalanine
  7. Threonine
  8. Tryptophan
  9. Valine

Among these, three amino acids play very important roles in the muscle-building process and in energy production.

They are the branched-chain amino acids (BCAA), which include:

  1. Leucine
  2. Isoleucine
  3. Valine

As the body cannot create EAAs and BCAAs, we need to get them from the food and supplements we eat and drink before and after training.

But are you getting enough protein from every meal or snack to meet these nutritional demands?

Scientific literature suggests that a daily protein intake of 1.8g per kilogram of body weight is ideal to promote muscle gain and support the repair and recovery process. But this figure can rise as high as 2.2g/kg/day for bigger, more advanced weight lifters.

When you provide your body with the right dose of complete protein, our digestive system breaks down the protein molecules from food – animal proteins or complementary plant proteins deliver a complete amino acid profile – and supplements like Biogen Complete Whey, and then sends these amino acids to our muscles.

The ideal ratio of whey, casein, milk protein concentrate, and plant proteins contained in a product like Biogen Complete Whey also provides the body with a sustained amino acid release from its superior profile, which supports optimal nitrogen retention and muscle protein synthesis.

As your body can only process and assimilate a certain amount of protein at a time, the ideal protein serving after exercise and at each meal is 30g. 

You can make this process more efficient and faster by including a product that supplies free form amino acids, which is ideal for use before and during training.

In this form, the body doesn’t need to digest and break down a protein molecule, which means amino acids get to muscle cells quicker to potentially speed up the muscle repair and growth process.

Supplementing with a comprehensive product like Biogen Complete 9 Aminos ensures you get a full range of EAAs, with added BCAAs to create a more effective anabolic response.

You need an abundant supply of all the EAAs to stimulate muscle protein synthesis while BCAAs have a muscle-sparing effect as your body converts them into glucose to provide energy. This limits the body’s need to break down muscle tissue to access amino acids when carb-derived energy stores run low.

BCAAs can also boost the muscle repair process after exercise, particularly leucine because it activates an anabolic pathway that stimulates muscle protein synthesis to a greater degree than the other two BCAAs.

The industry standard for BCAA formulations is a 2:1:1 leucine:isoleucine:valine ratio, which is what you get from Biogen Complete 9 Aminos. The formulation also provides the six remaining EAAs at levels that may assist with muscle protein synthesis, tissue repair and recovery after exercise.

The final puzzle piece: Sleep

While most people know how important sleep is to repair and rejuvenate your body, few get the type of sleep they need to support muscle recovery and growth.

Are you getting the right amount of quality sleep and sleeping for sufficient time each night?

Restorative sleep is a combination of quantity (7 to 9 hours a night) and quality. This should include sufficient time spent in the deep, non-rapid eye movement (non-REM) sleep phase – between 60-90 minute a night.

A good night of sleep includes a series of 90-minute cycles. During each sleep cycle, your brain moves from non-REM sleep to REM sleep. While the duration of every subsequent sleep cycle remains constant at 90 minutes, the ratio of non-REM to REM sleep changes.

And it is the early stages between 8 pm and 12 am when you typically experience the most restorative sleep as this is when you generally get most of the deep non-REM and REM sleep you need to support the muscle repair and growth process.