LAST UPDATED: March 11th, 2021
Another question from the most common gym questions section.
How long does it take to build muscle?
When you start working out, you usually wonder how long it takes to get into the desired shape.
But, it is not so easy to answer this question.
The only right answer is that you can’t gain muscle mass overnight. (1)
What do beginners need to know?
It’s important to know the real ratio and limits of your muscles ‘growth, to put realistic goals and to have realistic expectations.
Many guys expect to gain more muscles faster than they really can.
How Long Does it Take to Build Muscle?
There are several factors that affect how fast you can gain muscle mass:
1. Beginners vs. Experienced gym goers
One simple fact about working out: everything goes much faster in the beginning. (2)
However, the more you work out and build muscles, the more slowly you gain new muscles.
Apparently, the amount of muscles you can build in the first year is twice bigger than the amount you can build in the second year.
That’s why gaining muscles drops by 50% every next year.
Genetics has the biggest role in gaining muscles and the speed at which you are doing that.
The levels of hormones, the length of your muscles, the bones structure and so on, have an important role in building muscles.
Sadly, we can’t change our genes, so if you don’t have good genes, you need to work harder.
You can build muscles anyway, just a bit more slowly and more difficult.
Your final result will be worse than someone with good genes.
If you are a person with great genes for this- congratulations.
Enjoy all the benefits of your good genes and hard work.
This shouldn’t surprise you.
An 18-year-old guy with all those hormones surging can gain muscles faster than a 50-year-old man whose levels of testosterone are much lower. (3)
It’s another bad thing about aging.
When it comes to gaining muscles, the younger you are the better.
You must realize that as you get older things will go more slowly. (4)
Read about what natural supplements you can use to speed up the muscle gaining process here.
4. Workout program and diet
Finally, if you have a good workout program and diet, you can expect good results sooner. (5)
It seems obvious, but people keep eating junk food and not doing the right exercises.
That significantly slows down the process of gaining muscle mass.
So, how long does it take to build muscle?
How much muscle can you gain per month?
As you can see, gaining muscles depends on many factors.
But if you are interested in numbers, let’s see:
If your goal is building muscles fast, you need to know that you can gain about 0.5- 1 pound of muscle mass per month, optimally.
However, bear in mind that most men who want to build muscles gain mainly 0.5 pounds per month.
The best way to gain muscle mass is to combine a good diet with a good workout program because that way you won’t gain too much fat.
You can build muscles, but don’t expect to build huge muscles in a short time, be patient and hard-working.
If you want to build your muscles faster, read more about the best bodybuilding supplements: