Working out with weights builds muscle mass, this we know for certain. The amount of muscle you can gain is what we don’t know and it’s very difficult to measure.
Most supplements companies and fitness marketers will use a bodyweight claim to display increases in muscle mass.
But is bodyweight is notoriously bad at predicting or displaying changes in muscle mass over the short term, and very limited over the long term as well.
Many factors determine your bodyweight such as hydration status, the amount of time since your last meal, the amount of food mass in your stomach/intestines, fat mass.
It’s not uncommon for an average man to fluctuate between 5-7 pounds in a given day simply from food and liquid intake (and water and mass loss from sweating and just going to the bathroom to make a ‘deposit’)
The large daily fluctuations your body can go through make it very difficult to detect much smaller changes in muscle mass.
In other words, it’s virtually impossible to measure a 3-4 pound gain in muscle over the course of a year or two if you daily bodyweight can change as much as 5-7 pounds (and thats assuming you don’t gain or lose any fat mass at all).
Unless you have access to a body composition lab (such as those found at a university) you’ll only be left guessing at your muscle mass and change in muscle mass.
For this reason I’ve developed a new muscle mass measurement tool that will allow you to determine your relative muscle mass. This tool will also allow you to track any changes in muscle mass (weather you gain or lose muscle).
This is a new and more accurate predictor of muscle mass that corrects for fat mass, somatotype and changes in non-muscle lean mass…it’s called the Muscle Index and it will be the new standard in muscle measurement.
In todays podcast we discuss how the Muscle Index tool is built and why it’s a better measurement than bodyweight or any other predictor of muscle mass.