How to Build Lean Muscle Mass

Learn How to Build Lean Muscle Mass in 7 Steps

Building a strong and muscular body with a low body fat percentage has countless benefits. There are hundreds of positive effects on the health and the mind as well. Some of them include improved physical performance, improved balance and posture , reduced risk of injuries , enhanced insulin sensitivity and many many more. However this is a long process but it can change your life for good and it is definetely worth it !

In this article, we will cover the 7 most important steps that will change the game for you. Here is a quick summary:

  1. Strength Training
  2. Eat Clean & healthy food
  3. Drink Water
  4. Sleep like a baby
  5. Do Cardio
  6. Walk
  7. Train your flexibility & stretch

Following those 7 steps strictly will not only make you more leaner and muscular. It will also improve your overall health by 1000% and will make you feel great both physically and mentally. Now let’s dive write into the plan:

1.Strength Training

Strength training also known as resistance training is the most effective method for building muscle mass. There are multiple types of strength training. The most famous and used are weightlifting and bodyweight training. Both methods are extremely effective and each has its pros and cons but of course, combing both would give you the ultimate results.


  • Improves Posture and Balance
  • Boosts Metabolism
  • Increased Muscle Strength
  • Muscle Tone and Definition
  • Stimulates Bone Density
  • Helps with Weight Management
  • Improves Joints Stabillity and Flexibllity
  • Lower Risk of Injury
  • Enhanced athletic performance
  • Increased functional strength
  • Management of chronic conditions
  • Improves Mood and Mental Condition
  • Improves Cognitive Function
  • Can have a huge impact on confidence


Weightlifting is a method of working out that involves the lifting of an external object. The most used weights are barbells, dumbbells, and kettlebells. This is an extremely effective way to stimulate muscle growth and development. We recommend that beginners work out 2-3 times per week with at least a day of rest between training days. For advanced athletes, we recommend 3-4 times per week, and for intermediate/elite level up to 5/6 times per week. The structure of your workout depends on your level.

What are the best compound movements?

Compound movements are a type of exercise that are targeting multiple muscle groups at once. They will help you build muscle mass, increase your strength quickly and even increase your testosterone levels. The best compound movements you can do with weightlifting are: Bench press , Squats , Barbell or Dumbell Rows , Deadlifts and Pulldowns.

Always start your workout with a compound movement and perform between 3 and 5 sets. We recommend doing between 6 and 12 reps for each set. With every next workout try to increase the number of repetitions until you reach 12 for all of the sets. Then you should increase the weight and repeat the process.

Bodyweight Lifting

Bodyweight training also known as Calisthenics is the most famous and used method of building a muscular and lean physique. Unlike weightlifting, you can perform bodyweight workouts everywhere. It’s also free and super effective. On the top of that you can save a lot of time since you can workout at home.

What are the best bodyweight compound exercises?

The best bodyweight compound movements are Push Ups, Dips, Pull-Ups, and Squats. Push-ups and Squats are often underrated for the reason that most people with a bit more strength than the average person can perform 20 reps with no problem! However, there are multiple ways to progress on an exercise.

5 ways to progress on a bodyweight exercises
  • Use a weigh-vest ( increase the weight after you can perform 20 reps on every working set)
  • Perform the movement slowly ( we recommend 5 seconds for each rep)
  • Perform the movement on a gymnastics ring ( for upper body exercises). For example Ring Dips, Ring Push-ups
  • Decrease the number of limbs. Per example: One legged squats or One-Arm Push ups
  • Increase the number of Reps. New Studies are showing that doing a certain exercise with multiple reps till failure would have a similar effect to increasing the weight and doing fewer reps till failure.

Hybrid Training

Bodyweight exercises are amazing for building muscle mass and strength. They are also very good for improving your athletic performance since most of them require some kind of balancing skill.

Weightlifting Exercises are a bit more effective when it comes to building pure muscle mass and strength. Also, you can progress much faster with weights because you can control the exact weight you add. Another great thing about weightlifting is the opportunity to target any lagging body part much easier. For example, if you have a very muscular chest but the inner chest line is simply not that visible there are a variety of exercises to target and grow that specific area.

Thankfully you don’t have to pick one or the other. Both training methods have their pros and cons. And we have to mention that you can build an amazing body with both. However, the best thing you can do is to combine both workout systems.

2. Nutrition & Eating Habits

Providing your body with good quality food is the key to a lean and muscular body. A well-balanced diet provides your body with the necessary fuel to exercise, perform daily activities and maintain overall vitality. Improved mood and mental health, reduced risk of chronic diseases, enhanced immune function, stronger bones and teeth, healthy skin, hair, and nails, increased longevity and the list goes on and on. The benefits are countless.

What to eat to build lean muscle?

In order to build lean muscle you need to focus on a well-rounded diet that gives you the right amount of protein and all the key and essential nutrients that your body needs.


The best protein sources are skinless chicken breast, turkey, lean cuts of beef, fish (like salmon, tuna, or tilapia), eggs, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, tofu, and legumes (such as lentils, chickpeas, and black beans).


Whole grain foods like pasta, rice, quinoa, oats, and wheat bread will provide your body with a good source of carbohydrates that will give you the energy to smash your workouts and fiber to improve your digestive health. Fruits and vegetables will provide your body with minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants. They help with recovery, reduce inflammation and improve overall health. Make sure you include foods like leafy greens, berries, citrus fruits, cruciferous vegetables (such as broccoli, kale, and cauliflower), tomatoes, sweet potatoes, and bell peppers. Of course, any vegetable has its unique benefits so keep on diversifying your diet.


Healthy fats are involved in hormone production and of course they support overall health as well. Some good sources are avocados , nuts (such as almonds,walnuts and cashews), seeds (like chia seeds, flaxseeds, and pumpkin seeds), and extra virgin olive oil.

How many calories to eat to build lean muscle?

Building muscle mass is a process that requires your body to be in a caloric surplus which means that you should be consuming more calories than you are burning. However, if your surplus is too big ( 500+ calories) it’s most likely that you are going to gain some fat as well which is not what we want. Our recommendation is to be in a small surplus of around 200-300 calories. Should you calculate your calories every day? No. Well if you are a fan of calculation we won’t stop you but there is a much easier way. To build lean muscle mass you should not gain more than 1 kg of body weight per month. Simply notice the amount of food your eating to maintain your current body weight. Then slightly increase your portions throughout the day or just add one small meal of around 200-300 calories. Be consistent every single day. Check your body weight every morning on the scale and if you notice that you have gained a bit more decrease the calories slightly. Repeat the process until you find that sweet spot.

3. Drink Water

Our muscles are over 75% water. This means that if you are dehydrated you’ll definitely be lacking strength and won’t be able to push yourself hard enough during your workout. Drinking enough water is probably one of the most underrated things when it comes to building a lean and well-developed physique. Proper Hydration is essential for nutrient delivery to the muscles. Water helps transport nutrients, such as amino acids from protein, to the muscles, aiding in muscle repair and growth. It ensures that nutrients are efficiently absorbed and utilized by the muscles.

Water benefits for the muscles:
  • Hydration and nutrient delivery
  • Muscle function and performance
  • Protein synthesis
  • Muscle recovery
  • Joint lubrication
  • Temperature regulation
  • Muscle fullness and appearance

For optimal health and lean muscle mass gain we recommend drinking 35ml per 1 kg of bodyweight or half an ounce per lb of bodyweight. Simply distribute your water intake into similar portions throughout the day. Here are the best times to drink water:

  • Right After You Wake Up: because you’re dehydrated after sleep
  • Before each meal: to aid digestion and help you overeat.
  • Before ,During and After workout : The body is losing water and electrolytes through sweat. Drinking water around your workout will keep your body hydrated.
  • 1- 1.5 Hours before sleep: To prepare your body for a long dehydration period

4. Sleep like a baby

During sleep, the body undergoes very important processes for muscle growth and recovery. The Growth hormone responsible for muscle growth and repair is released during sleep. Also while sleeping the body increases protein synthesis which contributes to the growth of muscle fibers. A night of good quality sleep will restore your energy which is going to improve your workout performance like nothing else. And of course quality sleep will raise your testosterone levels and that is essential for building lean muscle mass.

Quality Sleep Benefits for the muscles:
  • Muscle recovery and repair
  • Protein synthesis
  • Hormonal balance
  • Energy restoration
  • Muscle coordination and performance
  • Reduced muscle breakdown
  • Inflammation reduction
  • Mental focus and motivation

We recommend sleeping around 8 hours every night. For increased sleep quality avoid eating big meals right before bed.

5. Do Cardio

A lot of people seem to think that doing cardio will make it harder for them to gain muscle. It’s the exact opposite. Cardio sessions are proven to improve blood flow and oxygen delivery into the muscles. Improved circulation helps in muscle soreness reduction and aids in the repair and growth of muscle tissues. And this is just one of the many wonderful benefits of doing cardio. Cardio also increases the whole body’s endurance which allows you to increase repetitions during heavy compound movements that require more oxygen from the body.

Benefits of Cardio :
  • Enhanced Recovery: Improves Blood Flow into the muscles
  • Increased Caloric Expenditure: Helps you with weight management
  • Improved Insulin Sensitivity: Your body can use insulin more efficiently to transport nutrients into muscle cells
  • Muscle Endurance: Increased Endurance will allow you to increase reps during strength training
  • Hormonal Benefits: Cardio can stimulate growth hormones

We recommend between 1 and 3 cardio sessions per week depending on your previous experience. 30-60 minutes duration per session is enough to receive the benefits that are mentioned above. There are so many forms of cardio out there. The most famous ones are Running, Swimming, Jumping Rope, Cycling, Boxing, Dancing, and so on.


Walking is essential for the body and has countless benefits for the human. Walking will help you with weight management more than anything else. If you are eating a bit more calories than needed for a lean muscle mass gain you can simply increase your daily steps to balance the caloric surplus. Walking also increases energy levels and promotes better blood circulation which has a huge impact on lean muscle mass gain.

Main Benefits of Walking:
  • Improves Overall Fitness and Stamina
  • Helps with Weight Management
  • Improves Joint Health
  • Improves Bone Health
  • Improves Mental Health
  • Increases Energy Levels

7. Train your flexibility & stretch

Flexibility and Stretch will not directly contribute to gaining lean muscle mass. However, working on your flexibility can make a huge difference in your training and lean muscle mass gain for a long-term period. Stretching exercises will increase the joint flexibility which increases the range of motion of the body. And the greater range of motion will activate the muscles much better during your regular workouts. Another great benefit from stretching is the improved tendon and muscle elasticity which reduces the risk of injuries during your training.

Benefits from Stretching:
  • Improved Range of Motion
  • Injury Prevention
  • Improved Muscle Recovery
  • Relaxation and Stress Relief
  • Improves Muscle Balance and Symmetry

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *