For a large number of gym goers, particularly bodybuilders, vascularity is a key part of their overall physique and look. Having bulging veins on their biceps or shoulders makes the muscles stand out that little bit more and many people strive for the look it gives them.
As with almost anything related to physique and training, some individuals are naturally blessed with better genetics than others. You will have probably come across some people who are more vascular by nature and have probably always been that way.
However, since you are reading this article, it is probably safe to assume you aren’t part of the genetically vascular group. Do not worry, although you can’t alter your genetics, you can take action to improve upon your current situation.
This article will present you a list of different methods for getting those veins to pop, both instantly but temporarily and on a more long-term, permanent basis.
How to make veins pop instantly
Whether it is fat loss, muscle building or being more vascular, ev
erybody wants instant results. In most cases related to improving your physique, instant results aren’t really possible.
However, there are some tactics you can use to appear more vascular right away. The downside to these methods is they will not be permanent so you will only want to use them if you wish to appear more vascular for a short period of time like during a physique competition, for example.
Get a pump
This one may be the most simple and obvious method but it certainly works very well. By focusing on a single muscle and performing multiple reps of a movement, you will force a large amount of blood into the target muscle and make your veins pop out as a result.
To achieve this, you don’t need to use very much weight, the focus should be more on multiple contractions of the target muscle. Be sure to really squeeze the muscle hard at the top of each rep to contract the muscle fully.
Blood flow restriction
This takes getting a pump to an entirely different level. Blood flow restriction training has actually become a rather popular training method for potential size gains but we will be using it purely to increase the pump and swell your veins even more.
Blood flow restriction involves the use of a tourniquet, which is tightly wrapped above the target muscle. With a bicep curl, it would be wrapped at the very top of the upper arm.
Once a tourniquet is in place, you would perform a high rep set of an isolation exercise with a relatively light weight. In the example of the biceps, a simple dumbbell curl would be perfect.
The idea is that the exercise forces a lot of blood into your target muscle, just like it would when you are getting a pump. However, the tourniquet restricts a lot of the blood from flowing away from the muscle.
The result is an incredible pump and some serious vascularity.
Increase your body temperature
When you become warmer, the blood rushes closer to the surface of your skin, which gives the appearance of fuller veins. Eating foods that make you warmer like peppers and spices may give a small bump in vascularity.
A trip to the sauna is also likely to leave you with more visible veins but some of this could be down to water loss, which will be covered later.
One quick trick that some bodybuilders also employ is to physically heat the surface of their skin with a hairdryer to encourage greater blood flow to certain muscles. Of course, this is very temporary and should be used with caution as you could easily burn yourself.
Water retention plays a big role in how well you are able to see your veins; if you hold too much water, you will bloat and your veins become hidden beneath the puffier, bloated skin.
Using diuretics can be a quick way to flush out some of the water you are holding on to and to decrease your bloating. Diuretic drugs must be used sparingly and with caution since they can have some unwanted side effects like dehydration if care isn’t taken.
This approach to reducing water retention is only a temporary one and there are some better, more long-term methods that will be discussed later on.
Methods for long-term vascularity
As discussed earlier, all of the techniques above will yield a higher level of vascularity but they are only temporary. Your veins will begin to return to their normal size soon after you employ those methods.
If you are looking to become more vascular on a permanent basis, you need to employ longer term strategies that will become part of your lifestyle instead of relying on quick fixes.
This is very likely to be your best bet if you want consistently appear more vascular and is the place to begin for the vast majority of people. Most people simply can’t see their veins because they have too much fat covering them up.
Therefore, removing the layer of fat should lead to an instantly more vascular physique. To burn the fat, you will be required to burn more calories than you ingest each day.
You can achieve this in two ways: exercising to burn more calories and eating fewer calories. Your best option is to combine both.
Begin by upping your activity levels with regular exercise and adjust your diet so that it consists of lower calorie, unprocessed foods.
Gaining muscle should be a given here as becoming vascular without building any muscle will just give you a scrawny, malnourished look.
By building bigger muscles, you increase the demand for oxygen and other nutrients in those muscles. Of course, these nutrients must be provided by increasing blood flow to your muscles, which has the benefit of making your veins appear larger throughout the day.
As an added benefit, building muscle will also help you to burn more calories and get rid of even more of the fat that covers your veins.
Decrease water retention
In the section on diuretics, we have already discussed a temporary method of flushing out water that your body may be holding on to. If you wish to decrease the bloat caused by water retention for the long-term, there are a few other easy methods of doing so.
Firstly, you should be drinking more water. Although this may sound counterintuitive, it will actually help your body to continuously pass water instead of holding on to it. Drinking around two litres each day should be sufficient for most people.
You can also turn to your diet as a way of reducing water retention. Excess carbohydrate and sodium both cause your body to hold on to more water that can bloat you.
Reducing the levels of both carbs and sodium may make you appear less puffy and allow your veins to show more.
You shouldn’t completely remove either sodium or carbs from your diet, though. Both are important nutrients so you should make sure you reach a recommended intake of both without over doing it.
Final thoughts on increasing vascularity
Even though there are some instant methods for becoming more vascular, you will gain a whole lot more if you put your time and energy into the longer-term tactics that we covered in the second half of the article.
Not only with these tips help your veins pop consistently and more permanently, they will also have greater positive impacts on your overall health and well-being. Of course, the changes will not happen overnight so patience and adherence are key to getting the physique you are aiming for.
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