The Exercise to Muscle correlation!

All of us know that Muscles respond to exercise, but the more interesting twist is the response stimuli, both during and after workouts. Exercise improves our muscles strength, endurance, speed and power. ‘Resistance exercise’ stimulates faster changes in the muscles.

When we exert greater resistance (typically what our body encounters during the day) the process of muscle hypertrophy or muscle building is activated.

Intense resistance training causes trauma to muscle fibres resulting in small microscopic tears in the tissue. The size and severity of the tear depends on exercise intensity. Now these tears in the muscle tissue activates special satellite cells that rush to the damaged area. These cells replicate, mature into grown cells and fuse to our muscle fibres. This process forms new muscle protein strands which increases the strength and size of the muscle resulting in overall muscle growth. Research proves that exercising specific muscles regularly increases their size by as much as 60%. Philosophers call this creative destruction.

Though it must be said that not all forms of sports increase muscle size, some sports rely more on coordination and control, than on physical power and strength.

Frequent exercise leads to improves muscle coordination. It trains our muscles to work more effectively and efficiently by working together. As a result of long term exercise, blood supply to the muscle increases and improves the delivery of various nutrients, minerals and vitamins to the muscles which makes them more effective and faster at regenerating after injury or workout. After regular workouts, muscles can store large amount of glycogen for energy. The size and quantity of mitochondria (powerhouse of cells) also increases in muscle cells which results in an increased rate of energy production. Active muscles are excellent for dealing with food energy, both fat and sugar. Necessary enzymes involved in energy production become more efficient and speed up metabolism. In sedentary lifestyles, muscles are slow in uptake of glucose. It also slows slow the process of fat burning which can accumulate in the arteries which can lead to increased risk of stroke and cardio vascular disease. Our muscles are evolved to perform this way suggesting that humans were meant to be active and on their feet .

Key take-away: Resistance training should be part of the exercise regime for full benefit….and yes make you more appealing to the opposite gender!