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Muscular Hypertrophy: How Does it work?

muscular hypertrophy

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Muscular hypertrophy is muscle cell growth. Hypertrophy refers to an increase in exercise-related muscle size. However, lifting weights is the most common way to increase hypertrophy.

What is Muscular Hypertrophy?

There are two types of muscular hypertrophy as myofibrillar and sarcoplasmic. Myofibrillar hypertrophy means the growth of muscle contraction parts. Sarcoplasmic hypertrophy means increased glycogen storage in muscles. However, which type to focus depends on your fitness goals.

Training with myofibrillar will help with strength and speed. Sarcoplasmic growth helps to give more sustained energy to your body for athletic endurance exercises. You can perform many reps at a lower weight or lift a heavyweight for fewer reps. The way you lift your muscles will determine how they grow and change.

For example, with a lighter weight, you can build muscle, but it will require many repetitions to train muscle fibers. Unless you do several repetitions to reach to the fatigue point. Therefore, you won’t see a lot of muscle definition with this workout style.

An effective way to stimulate growth and definition in muscle fibers is to use a heavyweight. If you’re short on time, it’s also a more efficient way to workout.

How to Increase Muscle Size and Quality?

You need both mechanical damage and metabolic fatigue to gain muscle through weight-lifting. The contractile proteins in the muscles will produce force when you lift a heavyweight to overcome the resistance offered by the weight.

This can cause structural muscle damage. Mechanical damage to muscle proteins activates the body’s reaction to the repair. The damaged muscle fibers cause an increase in muscle size. Mechanical fatigue happens when the muscle fibers exhaust the supply of ATP, a source of energy that helps contract the muscles.

The achievement of muscle hypertrophy includes both mechanical and metabolic fatigue. You don’t have to work your muscles to the point you can’t go through a rep to get the results you’d like.

A study shows that there needs to be a significant stress on the muscles for optimal gains, plus a moderate muscle pressure.
Researchers found highly successful exercises involving shortening (concentric) movements at fast-to-moderate speeds for 1-3 seconds and elongating (eccentric) movements at lower speeds (2-4 seconds) (1).

How Often You Need to Achieve Muscle Hypertrophy

It depends on your goals, how often you need to exercise to achieve muscle hypertrophy. One of these weight-lifting schedules could be tried: Three days a week lifting heavyweights. This allows you to regenerate your muscles for a day in between sessions. Recovery is essential for the growth of the muscle.

Lifting just two days a week, depending on your current fitness level.  Alternating between the upper body lifting and the lower body lifting on various days. This allows various muscles to work while allowing time for rest and recovery.

The Bottom Line

Muscular hypertrophy can be achieved in the gym by weightlifting. But to see growth, you need to break down and challenge your muscles. In addition, a protein-rich diet is very important for muscle growth. Focus on lean protein sources such as protein powder based on plants, lean meat, chicken, and fish. Try eating or drinking a source of protein within 30 minutes of an exercise. See your doctor before you start a new exercise routine. They can determine whether heavy lifting is safe for you.

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AB Rehman
AB Rehman is a certified personal trainer. He specializes in exercise science. His interests include nutrition, muscle building, and cardio exercises. He enjoys cooking, hiking, and outdoor activities.
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