Different Types of Muscle?
Muscle is muscle right? As long as the muscles are big, they should to be strong. If muscles are small they’re weak. Well with my experience, I can safely say that this assumption is NOT always true. Did you know there are different types of muscles? There are the big bulky guys that have huge muscles, but they look soft and aren’t really that hard if you were to poke at them. Then there are the other guys who are skinnier but have really ripped and rock solid muscles.
Not a lot of people know this but there are two types of ways to train to stimulate the muscle to grow. One way will develop the muscle volume to make muscles look fuller and bigger, while the other one focuses more on developing muscle fibers and density. Have you ever been in the gym and seen a skinny guy out lift a bigger guy? It is a rare site to see, but many guys that train for strength are often half the size and stronger then many of the guys who train for muscle size. Now why is that?
That is because there 2 different ways to stimulate the muscle growth like I stated earlier. The two types of muscle hypertrophy are split between ‘sarcoplasmic’ , and ‘myofibrillar’ stimulation.
Sarcoplasmic hypertrophy: focuses on expansion of the muscle by increasing fluid and water retention. This is done by using moderate to light weights and higher reps with 30 seconds to a minute rest between sets. Have you ever worked out and achieved a huge muscle pump which makes your arms look up to an inch bigger? The muscle pump is the point where your muscles are fully engorged and expanded by blood and fluid that are brought into your muscles. This is the result of sarcoplasmic training, you don’t get as strong but your muscles will continue to increase in size by expansion of blood and fluid volume into your muscles. Do not get me wrong, you will experience strength increases as time goes on, but you won’t develop as much fibers in the period of time it would take if you were to do myofibrillar hypertrophy type training.
Myofibrillar hypertrophy which is often used to build strength, will result in dense and hard muscles. This type of training stimulates the body to increase new muscle fibers, because muscle fibers increase strength of the muscle itself. This type of training may result in slower muscle size development then sarcoplasmic training, but it the size is relative to the actual muscle fibers instead of retention of fluids. This creates the ‘heavy and solid’ look even when the muscles are not flexed. Building muscle density with this kind of training requires you to do heavy workouts, (1-4 reps) and heavy weight with 2-3 minutes rest intervals.
These two ways to build different types of muscle will vary depending on your goals. A typical bodybuilder workout will most often consist of a mix between both.
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