31 Mar A Look Inside… Muscle Growth
Dumbells and Push Ups
If you have been going to the gym and started to notice your muscles bulging out of your T- shirt your probably pleased with yourself, and here is what is happening.
Inside your Muscles
Your skeletal muscles fibres are made up of many rod like cells called myofibrils and sacromeres. The fibres are then covered in connective tissue.
How your muscles grow
- The stress you exert on your muscles whilst working-out causes localised damage to the muscle fibres
- Small Cells called satellite cells detect the damage
- As a result once the muscles is at rest the body try fix the damage fibres by fusing them together or making bigger fibre
- These new thicker fibres are what make the muscles bigger
Bigger Muscles are not always stronger muscles
If you have ever watched a Bodybuilder in action whether in real life or on television you will notice that even with their sheer size, at competitive level they are never judged on on how much weight they can lift, rather it is on how they look.
If you then compare that with a Powerlifter, you will find men and women of varying shapes and sizes who lift much more heavier weights.
How So? This due to the Powerlifter training to activate and contract the muscle better for the specific exercise whilst the Bodybuilders focuses on fully working out the muscle fibres to achieve size and symmetry.
Key to muscle growth
There are 3 important things to remember:
- Tension is important for muscle growth and the best way to achieve this is to progressively lift more heavier weight or work the muscle out to failure.
- Muscle soreness after weight training indicates cell damage and this is what will trigger the fibre repair
- Rest is vital as this is when the muscle repairs and grows!