Have you just begun a lifting program and weight gain bringing you down? Do not worry!
When a muscle lifts loads that is unaccustomed to, the stress causes tiny tears in its fibers (micro-trauma). This occurs when building muscle - the tear and rebuild stronger than before. This repair process is completed via white blood cell production of prostaglandins; a hormone-like substance that causes pain and swelling. Fluid also contributes to swelling as fluid transports nutrients and enzymes to the muscle to support the re-building process. Swelling peaks on the fourth day, then gradually resides. This swelling may reflect on the scale, but do not worry, it is temporary!
Weight lifting is not the only exercise that this process can occur in; weight bearing exercise such as running a marathon can also cause muscle damage and swelling.
The muscle re-generation explained above is part of the process and your body will begin to adapt as you continue the workout regimen.
Rest days are vital, especially as a beginner, to allow time to heal. Nutrition is another key component. It is important you get adequate fats, carbohydrates, protein for your goals. I also suggest use of creatine and branch chain amino acids to aid in this recovery process.
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