The Final Answer: How Long Does It Take To Build Muscle?

Many people who are taking on the long term commitment of building up their muscle mass are wondering what to expect in terms of time. Everyone wants to know when they’ll be able to see the results? What are the time expectancies? These are common questions asked by those trying to improve their bulk, but unfortunately, the answers aren’t very simple.

Why? Because there is no one, specific, answer to this question. Everyone is different; everyone’s situation is different, so the time to reach results will vary. However, there are some guidelines that allow you to come up with accurate estimates for yourself.

And there are generalizations, such as the more dedication you put into your bulking program, the faster you’ll see results. It seems reasonable that someone who works out hard five days per week will see results quicker than someone who works out hard three days per week, right? It’s also likely someone who works out hard three days per week will see results quicker than someone who half-asses their workouts five days per week.

Hopefully, after reviewing this article, you will be able to make a realistic timeline for yourself and know what to expect time-wise with your bulking plan. Because, your results are the only results that truly matter.

What to Consider First

The first thing to think about is the effect gender has on the plan. It is important to know the truth – men will build muscle faster than women because of their biochemical make up. Because men have larger testosterone levels and testosterone is responsible for mass strength and gain, men have the ability to product more of the hormone and gain muscle at a quicker rate.

Men will gain muscle fast, and although this may seem discouraging for women to hear, it doesn’t mean fast muscle growth is better. Women respond just as quickly to workouts as men but not as fast or at the same intensity. Because of this, women build the muscle about 2-3 times slower than men, but that means the muscle gained is more likely to stick around.

Also, it’s important to realize that muscle strength and mass will only increase when under specific conditions. Even though men build muscle faster, if they aren’t training properly, it won’t matter because they won’t gain muscle mass at all. The quality of the workout is the ultimate factor in the results that are produced.

There are three general things to know when following a bulking plan:

  1. Consistency is key to building muscle. The longer and harder you work at it, the better the results will be. Even when results seem slow, keep working at it. If your routine is good, the results WILL follow.
  2. Push your muscles to their limit. Fatiguing your muscles will force them to grow. Make sure you are working out with intensity each and every time you hit the gym.
  3. Make sure you give your muscles time to recover. Essentially, you are damaging your muscles to help them grow. Today, we can replenish our workouts with recovery supplements like BioRecover. We can also plan our routines to give our muscle groups time to recover after we work them out. More isn’t always better when it comes to building muscle.

What to Expect

In the reference to time during journey of gaining muscle max, expect to be dedicated for at least six months to a year, minimum. It’s not an easy thing to do—changing your body composition—so understand that it will take time to see the changes. Because the time is not as short as most would like, having patience is key. It’s hard to look at the next goal instead of the end result, and this can make you discouraged when results aren’t seen right away. Focus on what’s in front of you and the results down the road will get here before you know it.It’s a fact that within the first month, muscle gain will be minimal, even with intense weight lifting regimes. Your muscles need to go through the first stages of the program before they adjust and go on to the next step. Essentially, when you shock your muscles at the beginning of a workout routine – your muscles realize they’re not strong enough and force themselves to become stronger to withstand the workout. As you work out more, your muscles grow bigger, quicker.  But it takes time.So, don’t worry. If you stick to the program and stay committed, you will see results when you look in the mirror.

Taking the Fast Track

If you want to speed up the process, then you have to explore upping the intensity and frequency of training. Try splitting training sessions, where you work on certain parts of your body in one go. This allows you to work out more days in the week and allows for plenty of time to let your body recover in between the days that you target them.

An example of a split routine is to work out the lower body, back, and biceps two days a week, and then working the chest, triceps, and shoulders on a different two days. With this, you still get three days of rest or cardio. You have the option of working out back-to-back days or splitting them up. Back-to-back training will build muscle the fastest, when compared to random weight training methods.

How Long Does It Take?

The first month is about adjusting to your new workout routine, following your diet, and monitoring yourself daily. During the first month, the average male – without supplements – can expect to gain 1-2 pounds. This might not seem like a lot, and it’s the reason why bulking up taking the 6-12 months, as stated before. It’s a long term commitment. After the first year, the number of total weight gain jumps from 6-12 pounds to 12-24 pounds. With proper supplementation added to proper nutrition, the average male can expect two to three times those results.

After The First Year

Your body is designed to take on a certain amount of muscle, so once you reach that point, the growth process slows down. You’ll have to push through this stalling. This can be achieved by switching workout routines and targeting the muscles with different exercises. This will eliminate the stalling effect and it won’t allow your muscles to become prepared for your workouts. It will continue to challenge them and force them to grow.

But, the longer you continue, the stronger you will get, even as slow as it may be. But, even the slowest progress is the fast lane compared to the person that’s sitting on their couch. Everyone is different and exercise affects them in different ways. It is possible that you’ll be able to grow muscle in an impressive rate. You just never know until you you’ve committed to it. That’s why predicting the time it’ll take to gain muscle is hard to do.

The Reality of Bulking

You can do anything you dedicate yourself to. Just remember, it may not be easy; it may not happen right away, but it will be worth it.

Hopefully, knowing what to expect before you start will help you stay the course. Set realistic goals and celebrate when they’re met. Focus on the smaller goals then the overall end result. That end result will arrive.

The reality of doing something hard—with anything in life—is that it will be just that, hard. There’s no easy or quick way to get the results, so people get discouraged and quit. They think the odds are stacked against them and stop before even gaining a pound. That’s why the results feel so good. The only way to get big, is to be in the gym, take care of your body, and put in the work.