Can Anyone Achieve A Muscular Buff Body?
We all have preferences for how we want to appear and what we find attractive. Many people enjoy the way muscle mass makes them look and feel. Both men and women may feel more empowered when they have visible muscles. And many people feel sexier when their body is toned and muscular.
The path to a beach body with muscles that ripple isn’t easy for most. While some people are naturally muscular and can achieve this look with regular exercise and a standard diet, it can take a bit more work for others.
Body types vary. The good news is that regardless of your body type, each body contains the essential ingredient for muscle mass. We’re talking about muscle cells. Each person is born with a certain number of muscle cells, and fat cells. You cannot add cells or take them away. It’s preprogrammed into your DNA.
However, you can change the size of those cells. You can make fat cells shrink and muscle cells can grow larger.
Muscle cells are different than other cells in your body. While most cells have a single nucleus, muscle cells have many. When you work the muscle cells through strength training exercises, they develop more mitochondria.
Mitochondria are the little energy producers in your cells. As you build up your mitochondria, your muscle cell size increases. In fact, the increase can account for up to 30 percent of your muscle mass. But this isn’t the only way that muscle cells grow.
Your skeletal muscle is composed of thread-like myofibrils and sarcomeres that form a muscle fiber and are the basic units of contraction. Contraction and extension are the two basic movements of a muscle. When you bend your arm you’re contracting some muscles and extending others. Extend or straighten your arm and the opposite muscles contract and extend.
Strength training breaks down some of your muscle fibers. It damages them, and that, believe it or not, is a good thing. Because after you exercise, your body repairs or replaces the damaged muscle fibers through a cellular process where it binds muscle fibers together to form new muscle protein strands. These repaired strands increase in thickness and number to create muscle growth.
Notice that your muscles don’t grow when you exercise. They grow when you rest. This is important to remember later on when we’re talking about taking good care of your body and resting.
Additionally, when you exercise you increase the volume of the fluid and glycogen stored in your cells. This also increases the size of the muscles.
So there are three different ways that a body can increase muscle mass through exercise. However, you can also see that genetics can play a very important role in the development of muscle mass. Some people with the right genetics can develop very large muscles. Other people will need to work long and hard at bulking up. However, both types of people can show off the muscles they do have by reducing their fat.
Adipose tissue, aka fat, covers your muscles. It serves as a fuel as well as a protective mechanism. When you reduce the size of your fat cells, your muscles stand out. They’re no longer covered by a thick layer. They’re more noticeable. This is why bodybuilders go on a very specific diet before they compete in a bodybuilding contest. They need their body fat to drop down to very low levels so the judges can clearly see the outlines of their muscles.
It’s also important to point out that men and women generally differ when it comes to building muscle. Testosterone triggers muscle cells to grow. Women don’t have much of this hormone so they don’t bulk up as quickly. But they can build muscle mass. And the good news for women is that the exercise and strength training approach for men and women is the same.