Bodybuilding and Weight Training/Introduction

Bodybuilding can be a fun and engaging sport. It can also be dangerous if not taken seriously, however, injury is rare and should not be a reason to stay away.

There are a few important questions to ask yourself before you start:

1. Where will you work out, and when? At least three days per week are recommended (not consecutively, though, because your muscles need time to rest and grow in between workout days). Your workout might average somewhere around half an hour to an hour for an average workout.

2. Can you manage to eat several meals high in protein every day? Almost all bodybuilders recommend a high-protein diet. This is important, because protein is the "building block" of muscle. How much protein should you be willing to consume? A common range is 1.0 to 1.5 grams of protein per day for each pound of your body weight (for example: if you weigh 160 pounds, you should try to consume 160 to 240 grams of protein every day for the best results). Be aware that protein supplements are available, such as whey protein powder, but it is generally advocated that at least half of your daily protein intake consists of "real" foods as opposed to protein supplements. Also, many bodybuilders believe it's best to eat around six smaller meals in your day instead of three large meals if you're able.

3. What are your goals? Is your goal to become generally stronger? Perhaps your goal is to transform your body? Depending on your goals, you may need to adjust your workout accordingly. For example, if you're looking to not only gain muscle but also lose fat, you may want to use your resting days as cardio-workout days where you can do cardio exercises such as running and swimming.