Body building is an art, it’s about determination, it’s about the diet, it’s about proper rest – I’m pretty sure you have gone through all of this before reading this article. But let me tell you something, above everything it’s purely science. We often see this in gym, when two people doing the same workout and following the same diet differ when it comes to muscle mass and strength. The following five points will surely enlighten you to strive for your goals, but at the same time love yourself the way you are.
1. Type of Muscle Fiber:
This is one of the most influential factor in muscle development and it’s purely natural. There are two types of muscle fibers in our body which are often referred as the “slow twitch” fiber and the “fast twitch” fiber. The slow twitch fibers are responsible for providing small levels of force for a prolonged period of time, hence best for cardiovascular (aerobic) activities. On the other hand, the fast twitch muscles are responsible for providing high levels of force for a short burst of time.
These fibers are are equally distributed in the body of most men and women. But, some inherit a higher percentage of either slow twitch or fast twitch fibers. The people who inherit more of slow twitch fibers are excellent marathon runners and good at endurance activities, and the people who inherit more of fast twitch fibers are good at short sprints which are essential for short races and games like football. The reason behind explaining this theory of muscle fibers is that, both muscle fibers respond positively to strength training. But the people with more of fast twitch fiber experience greater increase in muscular size and strength.
2. Limb and Muscle Length:
This factor is often overlooked, but plays a vital role in muscle development. Person with shorter limb length could be seen lifting heavier weights due to the advantageous leverage factors (arms and legs). A similar difference in muscle strength could be seen due to variation of muscle length. We inherit muscle sizes and some have long muscles, while some have comparatively shorter muscles. Person with relatively longer muscles have a greater potential to develop more strength and size than person with relatively shorter muscle.
You knew this was coming, right. Gender of course plays a pivotal role when it comes to quantity of muscles and not the quality. Men and female muscle characteristically are the same, but men have more muscle tissues than their women counterpart. The reason behind it is the male sex hormone – testosterone which is responsible for increasing muscle size. The larger the muscle, the stronger a person becomes. This is the reason why most men are stronger than most women – not being a Chauvinist here but it is how human body has been engineered.
This is the factor which we have no control at all. Studies reveal that people of all age groups can increase their muscle size and strength, if and only if proper training is followed. However muscle strength and size can be increased greatly between the age of 10-20, which also happens to be against the popular myth that strength training at a young age leads to “height stunting”. In fact after reaching physical maturity muscle building usually doesn’t come quickly.
5. Other factors:
The factors mentioned above are the one’s which you have least to no control at all. But do keep in mind, there is no alternative to hard work. If you put in effort at the gym with proper lifting techniques that involve slow controlled lifting movements and lifting to the point of muscle fatigue, you will surely succeed in your transformation goals.
A well balanced workout is very essential, accompanied by proper diet and rest. One more serious issue with fitnees enthusiasts is “Overtraining”. This happens when you don’t rest well and train your muscles with too many sets which are actually unnecessary.
Do not follow the same routine for a prolonged period of time. You will eventually get bored with the workout and the plateauing in muscle growth will make things worse.
Genetics does play a role in muscle growth, but it totally depends on your lifestyle and your workout patterns. Hence, having good genes and not having them doesn’t really matter. If you want a Zeus like body, all you have to do is WORK FOR IT.