Workout Tips

14 Tips to Make Getting Ripped Easier

There's no way to make it "easy," but these fitness, diet, and lifestyle tips can help.

14 Tips to Make Getting Ripped Easier

Focus on split routines and steady-state cardio

As mentioned, exercise is only 15 percent of the equation, according to Nelson. Still, you want to be sure you’re making your time in the gym worthwhile. For a bodybuilding effect, Nelson suggests a split routine or a push-pull routine. For weight loss or general fitness, plan workouts consisting of full-body circuits. In terms of cardio, you’re better off with steady-state work rather than intervals, which can make you hungrier (and more likely to “cheat” on your diet plan).

Lift heavy weights

A common misconception is that you should go lighter with more reps to cut up muscles. “This is the worst thing to do!” Miller says. “You need to keep challenging yourself with heavy weights so your body will want to hold onto its muscle while cutting.”

Take it easy

To that end, she says you only need an hour of weight training three to five days per week. “More is not better, and harder isn’t necessarily better when it comes to getting ripped,” she says. That also means taking the time in a workout to let your muscles recover between sets.

Get plenty of sleep

Rest is essential to recovery from your workouts, as muscles repair themselves while you sleep. “Studies show that those who are up more hours eat more,” Nelson says. “And lack of sleep can also alter human growth hormone release.” In other words, less sleep can inhibit all the results you’re working for.

Be realistic

Bodybuilders have in-season and off-season body weights because show prep is extremely difficult and a show body isn’t easily maintained. Plus, a true cutting phase is mentally and physically exhausting. Make it easier on yourself by finding an equilibrium you can maintain.