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Bodybuilding Tips for Beginners

Written by Ann Winters

Having a great body is everyone’s dream, isn’t it? That’s why people often turn to the internet to find out how to get bigger arms or look for ways to get broad shoulders. Each of us has our reasons for building a muscular body. Some want to get fit; others want to look better. While some look to lift the heaviest weights available, others wish to lose weight. Whatever your story may be, it’s time to start on your fitness journey. 

Today, anywhere you look around, you will find tons of body-building tips. The internet is full of advice and tips on how to build the greatest body. And there is only a handful of sites that provide bodybuilding tips backed by science. Thus, it is pretty easy to get misled by nonscientific and dubious information found on the web. These unreliable tips and tricks leave you all confused and disheartened. 

Fortunately, you can find a lot of evidence-based information on how to train, eat and work out in case you don’t have a mentor to guide you. What’s more, finding ways to get shredded in a few days is also available on trustworthy sites. 

In this article, we aim to help newbies who want to have attractive bodies and are looking for effective information. Make sure to read this article until the end for some very important information if you are planning on bodybuilding.

When To Cut and When to Bulk in The Bodybuilding Process?

Once you are sure about your goal, it’s just a matter of knowing how to achieve it. As a beginner, it will be confusing to get a head start. Initially, you will need grips if you want to burn fat or gain muscle. So, let us have a look and understand if you need to bulk or cut it down. 

If you are new to the body-building world, then you might not know about the terms bulking and cutting. Well, the idea is easy. But first, measure your body fat. People with low body fat percentage (below 15-20%) need to bulk first and people with more body fat percentage (beyond 20% fat) need to cut by eating low-calorie food before starting. 

Generally, muscles have not kicked in yet for those who just started with their bodybuilding program. This is when you need to bulk in. Bulking is essential to gain strength and muscle. This is achievable only through strict training and diet. 

Make sure that the training you follow has good workouts and lifts. If possible, work through your macros. This will help with bulking. In addition, it will ensure that you are getting the right calories through your diet. 

A neat bulk heavily focuses on vegetables, fruits, and whole foods. Ensure to avoid all kinds of processed foods like pizza, candy, or sweets.  A clean bulk diet will enrich your body with essential nutrients. This will help you gain weight minus any danger or risk. At the same time, it also aids in higher fat gain. 

Through the process, if you feel you have gained enough muscle then start cutting. Even if the body fat percentage is slightly more than the expected amount, it’s time to cut down. This is applicable even at the beginning of your lifting process. With this, you will need to lose some amount of fat initially. To lose fat, you will have to lower your calorie intake. 

Cut down your sugar intake if you want to accelerate the cutting phase. For that be mindful about what you eat. Avoiding sugar with your coffee or not drinking sodas is not enough. Check the labels before you buy foods. Avoid fruits that have high sugar levels.  

It is recommended that you first take down your current weight. Alongside, calculate the body fat percentage and calorie intake. Depending on these factors, you can determine how much to cut or bulk. It doesn’t matter if you choose to bulk or cut down first. But, ensure that you are getting enough proteins.  

The Bodybuilding Program for a Week

Bodybuilding seems impractical to follow as a pre-written program. But, if you are a newbie to the gym, let’s keep the guesswork out of the game. Pre-written programs are a boon to beginners in the gym. 

Using pre-written programs allows you to keep the focus on what’s right for your body. It helps you figure out the right workouts and perform them correctly. 

The Workout Program

A majority of the training workouts are split into days that cater to different muscles. This is ideal for athletes who need to pay close attention to their physiques. 

However, beginners can make the most of such workouts. Ideally, a 3–4-day program on compound exercises will restore muscle growth. You can enjoy remarkable results without having to spend hours per day in the gym. 

Upper Body Workout For Day 1

  • Lateral Raise: 2 x 12
  • Bench Press: 3 x 6
  • Face Pull: 2 x 12
  • Overhead Shoulder Press: 2 x 8
  • Dumbbell Row: 3 x 6
  • Dumbbell Flye: 2 x 8
  • 45-degree Incline Row: 3 x 6

Lower Body Workout For Day 2

  • Good Morning: 2 x 12
  • Calf Raise: 2 x 12
  • Step-Up: 2 x 12
  • Romanian Deadlift: 3 x 8
  • Box Squat: 3 x 6

Full Body Workout For Day 3

  • Cable Crunch: 2 x 10
  • Deadlift: 3 x 5
  • Upright Row: 2 x 8
  • Incline Dumbbell Press: 3 x 8
  • Overhead Press: 3 x 6

Workouts for Abs, Calves, And Arms For Day 4

  • Plank: 3 sets for 30 seconds
  • Calf Raise: 2 x 10
  • Cable Curl: 12-15 reps
  • Skull Crusher: 3 x 8
  • Side Bend: 2 x 10
  • Hammer Curl: 2 x 8
  • Tricep Kickback: 12-15 reps
  • Dips: 12-15 reps
  • Barbell Curl: 3 x 8

Ensure to follow this workout during the week. However, make sure that you do not train three days in a row. You can train across the week through Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. Getting enough rest is also important so make sure you are sleeping well.  

What To Eat for Bodybuilding?

While gaining lean mass, nutrition is as important as the right training. A good diet will ensure faster recovery, higher gains, and better health. A diet comprising the correct amount of fat, carbohydrates, and proteins will help with better body-building. Your total calorie intake needs to be accurate for optimal results. In addition, these components should be according to their right proportions. 

Bodybuilders often choose an anabolic diet to increase body mass all the while keeping the fat level to a minimum amount. This diet plan serves the purpose for a short while. But it isn’t something you should follow for a long time.   


Proteins are responsible for the maintenance of the tissues in your body. They also help with the growth and repair of the muscles. Protein has four calories per gram. Researchers state that having proteins before bed is highly beneficial. So, it is crucial to know about your daily protein need.  

You need amino acids to repair and grow your muscles. An advantage of having proteins before bed is that it boosts muscle protein synthesis. This helps your body recover from the workout. Another study reveals that having a protein shake before bed results in higher muscle fiber size. Ideally, around 30–35% of calories should come from protein for a bodybuilder. 


Similar to protein, carbohydrates also have four calories per gram. Carbs are important for a variety of activities like lifting, walking, and more. Furthermore, they have a huge impact on the healthy functioning of the brain. So make sure that 55–60% of calories come from carbohydrates when it comes to your daily calorie intake.  


Bodybuilders need to get 15-20% calories from fats. They are really important for the regulation of the body. It has nine calories per gram and helps with essential functions. They maintain hormone balance and the hormone balance. Moreover, they also keep you full for a longer time after eating. 

Feed Your Cravings

When you are following a strict diet, it is common to be tempted by your favorite foods. You might also crave some unhealthy foods which contradict your goal. We understand your feelings. We do. 

Strictly following a regimen can be tough when you see yummy food around you. It’s normal to crave foods that you love. Because everyone eventually gets tired of the boiled vegetables and chicken. 

This is why it’s okay to have cheat days or refeed days. You can either go with a cheat meal or a cheat day as you wish to. These help to wade off the urges and deal with extreme cravings. But you should get too distracted by the delicious foods and forget your goal. You can feed your craving by eating in a designed way. For keeping things in proportion, we recommend you go for a refeed day or cheat meal. 

There is a small difference between a cheat day and a refeed day. A cheat day means you can munch on anything with no concern about the calorie count.  But a refeed day or cheat meal doesn’t mean you eat everything you see around. It’s about choosing the right carbs for your body. 

So, cheat days are basically unplanned days of indulging in your cravings. You eat whatever you like in unlimited quantity. On the other hand, cheat meals are planned and monitored. With a healthy cheat meal, you usually witness an increase in calories. But that too is done with proper planning which doesn’t ruin your end goal.

Should I Use Supplements?

Body-building is usually synonymous with nutritional supplements. Remember that a good pre-workout can be a great starter. But they can never replace a good diet or workout. Supplements aren’t designed to be taken as the focus of your diet. 

If you are a beginner in the gym, then your nutritional supplementation needs to match your workout. It should be effective and focused. There are several products in the market that advertise fast progress and quick gains. However, being aware of reality will save money and time. 

Try to get all of your nutritional requirements from smart food choices like:

  • Fish oil
  • Creatine
  • Multivitamin
  • Protein powder
  • Pre-workout powder 

You can choose from a variety of options for supplementation. However, these five above-mentioned are effective and reliable. Not to forget, these are scientifically proven with extensive research. You can use steroids to lose weight. While you are going through the bulking and cutting stage many choose to use steroids. It fast tracks the whole process relieving you from this tough phase. 

SARMs stack is another popular choice among bodybuilders. It is a performance enhancer used mainly by athletes. Bodybuilders use it because it is a safe alternative for increasing strength and endurance. It also helps with the cutting phase. Even though the mentioned supplement comes with many benefits it has a common drawback too.

According to many users, SARMs cause acne problems. So, you can go for this type of performance enhancer if you are fine with this problem. Some supplements prove to be of great help with the whole bodybuilding program. If you choose to use steroids, be sure to use only the best kind available on the market. 

Giving The Body Enough Time to Recover  

Making gains is easier said than done. But, with the right effort and patience, you too can eventually do it. You have to train hard and follow a strict diet to make gains. Do not forget that your body needs its recovery time too. The idea of body-building is based on muscular damage. First, you challenge your muscle tissues. Secondly, they are damaged. And finally, the muscle tissue wins and builds back up stronger than before. 

Recovery doesn’t simply mean taking rest. It also means avoiding any kind of stress altogether. Ensure to keep your stress levels in check. Make sure that your diet is rich in nutritional content. Stay as active as possible. 

And last but not the least, get tons of quality sleep. Your body should get about 8-9 hours of good sleep for recovery. Compromising on any of these will hamper your progress. Working out too hard in the gym but being lazy at home will not help. A combination of a good diet, workout, rest, and recovery is the secret to good gains. 

While beginning out in the gym, try to rest for three days a week. Usually, newbies try to overdo and overtrain which takes a toll on the body. Resistance training isn’t recommended when you are not adapted to the same. So, it’s best to stay safe and train wisely. Take your days off and give your body its much-deserved rest. 

Final Words

Once you get into the craze of body-building, it’s tough going back. This is an addiction that grows over you as time passes. A routine soon becomes a passion for fitness and healthy living. Interestingly, body-building is also an area where your efforts are rewarded. 

At first, certain changes might be difficult. Changing your food habits is one of those difficult changes. You can lower the difficulty by making some smart food swaps. This way you wouldn’t miss your favorite foods too much and control your craving. 

I would say that patience is the key to getting the kind of body you always imagined to have. Don’t rush it by using the human growth hormone or insulin. All the effort you put into curving your body would go down the drain if you develop a bubble gut. So, keep it natural and refrain from insulin abuse.   

Remember, it’s best to stick with the natural bodybuilding process. Because it is safe for your body leaving no place for side effects. It is easy to tell if your body is naturally built or a result of varied steroids. Find out the difference between a body built with steroids or natural efforts. It will help in making informed decisions.     

If you are starting your fitness journey, here is everything you need. With the right nutrition, program, and workouts, you will soon welcome your new muscles! Keep the motivation going and don’t give up however tough it may seem.