Discover Magazine : True or False – Sex Makes Muscles Weaker

Does Sex Weaken Muscles ?

There are many fitness myths and falsehoods about the human body. The one that is the most persistent is that sex weakens muscles. This misinformation continues to spread among coaches and athletes themselves. Discover Magazine  on its website produces a section called “Seriously Science” in which it answers random questions about the field. People have limited understanding about their bodies and even more when it comes to copulation. The origin of the concept of sex interfering with athletic performance goes back to ancient Greece and Rome. They believe that it created too much calm and ease before competition. The only way to verify this is to use the scientific method. An experiment was conducted with weight trained men. This experiment has some  flaws. Women could be good subjects and obviously intercourse is an activity that is not done alone. Seeing as women’s bodies are physiologically and anatomically different it could help verify certain claims. If women have less muscle mass in their bodies it could tell us more about how sexual intercourse effects physical strength. The measurements and methods were sound. The athletic men were expected to engage in sex 12 hours before engaging in isokenetic  dynamometry. The problem was that the men did self reporting of sexual activity. The conclusion may be correct, but it can only be confirmed by replication.

          To comprehend the methods of the experiment,  a general understanding of isokenetc dynamometry must be established. This term describes devices that resist applied forces. Simultaneously, it controls the speed of exercise that is determine prior to use. This technology has the ability to measure the performance of muscle groups. Isokenetic dynamometry can also measure torque, resistance, and fatigue. This has vast applications for physical therapy and rehabilitation. The measurements would be more precise than having subjects just doing their weight lifting routine afterwards.

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While a person doing bench presses or dumbbell curls could also measure strength, the intention is to get a precise measurement. Isokinetic muscle testing has applications beyond mere sports science. It has been used in rehabilitation of orthopaedic conditions. What such devices in the study were used for was documenting muscle force from during five sets of maximal unilateral knee extension. The knee fexion exercise was conducted at 30 degs/s after the men abstained or engaged in intercourse. The time frame was 12 hours. According to the study : ”  the order of this treatment was randomized across participants, and time of day was maintained across all sessions.” The isokinetic muscle testing measured strength and endurance of the subjects.

          There  is a question about the subjects selected. The study just says they were men who were just physically active and in their 20s. Using professional athletes would have made more sense to see if the dramatic change in fitness would have occurred. Then the type of athlete you use also would matter. Weightlifters or bodybuilders could be useful subjects in a study. Weightlifters more so, seeing as they train for physical strength. Powerlifters or crossfit athletes may also be suitable. Women would be good subjects. Seeing as their bodies are different, they have to work harder to attain physical strength. Even the most muscular woman has less muscle mass of a man of equal training. If sex did weaken muscles it would have a greater effect on women.

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The study also acknowledges another problem with self reporting. The men in the study may either embellish their sexual activity, so there is no way of knowing for certain if they met the requirements.Men have the habit about bragging about their amount of sexual intercourse. For women, they may be more modest when discussing this topic. The hope is that subjects would be honest with their answers seeing as it anonymous. Subjects names are never revealed in scientific studies for the sake of privacy. The only way to be sure about the data is not to be reliant on self reporting. However results were produced : ”  data showed no significant effect (P = .34 and P = .39) of sexual intercourse on peak or average KE or knee flexion torque. For example, after sexual intercourse, KE torque was similar in set 1 (198.9 ± 39.1 ft/lb vs 190.2 ± 28.7 ft/lb) and set 5 (163.2 ± 30.8 ft/lb vs 159.4 ± 35.2 ft/lb) compared to when men abstained from sexual intercourse.” The conclusion was that engaging in sex before exercise a night before will not effect physical strength.

       Although the experiment had some minor factors effecting results, its conclusion may be correct. Abstaining or having sexual intercourse will not impact athletic performance. As stated in the text : ” results demonstrate that sexual intercourse does not significantly impact lower extremity muscle force, which suggests that restricting sexual activity before short-term, high-force activity is unnecessary.”Could there be a possible psychological impact? That answer is not clear. There have not been any sport psychology studies that have explored the topic in depth. Sex making muscles weaker is just another fitness myth. The self reporting method does have its limitation. People may either be too bashful or embellish their sexual activity. What is known to negatively effect performance is irregular training, poor diet, lack of sleep, and ineffective training techniques.

Discover Magazine : True or False – Sex Makes Muscles Weaker

A Confutation To Broscience : The Fun Side of Being With A Female Bodybuilder

“The Downsides of Having Sex With A Female Bodybuilder” from Broscience was published in 2015.  Another  article that pondered the topic appeared on Spot Me Bro. Both were so similar you would have thought it was plagiarism. Or maybe so many people think the same their writing is identical . The real comedy is that none of the authors even have dated or gotten close to a female bodybuilder. How can you write about something you do not know?   The Spot Me Bro article has since disappeared, but my response has not on VK media ( Spot Me Bro ).  The poor attempt at humor is more painful than watching Amy Schumer  stand up. They are the same quotes and ideas espoused by female muscle haters on forums, videos sites, or social media. This is the land of npcs in which anyone who looks, thinks, or acts differently is automatically castigated. Although my response to the Broscience article was a relative short one ( Broscience)  I feel that this needs a bigger exclamation point. Our poor bros do not understand what they are missing. Being with a female bodybuilder has more potential than you think. Our bros only think about the act of sex, rather than a possible long term relationship or a marriage. You would be in good hands with ( or locked in arms) with such a woman.  The fun side of being with a strong woman  outweigh cons. Being with and seeing different people can broaden your horizons. One just needs an open mind.

      Beauty comes in many forms it is just unfortunate only one paradigm is presented as ideal. The female form can have many versions of beauty. This is not about presenting one type as ideal or superior  rather enjoying variety.  The muscular female form combines strength and feminine grace into one entity. Bodies almost take on god like imagery. These women look like warriors ready for battle. The muscular woman seems like a goddess radiating with power. All the same areas that men find attractive on women are merely exaggerated to the highest degree. The posterior and legs are popular sights of interest. It makes a man also pay special attention to other parts of a woman’s body. Normally,  the back is not a favorite part of men. When a lover of female bodybuilders is asked they articulate a beauty in a sculpted back.

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The lines, the curvature, and the size of the latissimus dorsi  produce a look similar to a statue. Their bodies have been molded into living works of art. What some consider spectacle is actually a testament to how incredible the human body is. This admiration is beyond erotic desire rather a respect for an aesthetic paradigm. The female flesh is molded into something majestic. It takes an immense amount of mental and physical effort to attain such physical prowess. Such women have not lost their femininity; they have expanded its definition. Womanhood does not have to be frail and helpless; it can be strong and dynamic. This is more of the philosophical basis for liking women of such strength. The sudden beauty fad is to favor women with curves, but the muscular woman had curves prior to it being popular. This may be too hard for the Broscience guys to understand. Some people have different tastes in women. Opening your views to accepting other forms of beauty widens your options.

       Broscience got it backwards about having relations with a female bodybuilder. Why wouldn’t an eligible bachelor want to have some physical intimacy with a different type of woman.  Make no mistake this will be physically intense. These girls are not linebackers or men with vaginas. They are dedicated athletes with the bodies of She-Hulk and the strength of Wonder Woman.  While some men may have a problem with women having more power in both the physical and social sense, the reality is men are going to go to what they want. Brosceince says your friends may tease you, but so what. This is a different sexual experience. Many couples say they get bored doing the same thing. People may get sick of being with the same type in a relationship.

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These women are unique in the sense their bodies are different. They are strong and at the same time have a soft voluptuousness. Is this is fetish ? Liking muscular women is not a fetish by itself. That is just a preference for a particular body type. There are fetishes specific to the love of strength and muscles known as cratolagnia and stehnolagnia. Buff babes are the greatest thing for people with this type of fetish. Sometimes it is not about the looks; it’s the confidence that the women project. People ruin their chance for happy interpersonal relations due to their insecurities. Women often get  too clinger like  with  their partner. Men have the desire to be too domineering in their relationships. Broscience says that when you go with a woman like this, “you’re not the man.” The opposite is true. You will go from being a 98 pound weakling to a super saiyan god. These women put hair on your chest. Depending on the woman the sexual experience may vary.Make no mistake it will be wild and wonderful. There will be one thing harder than the muscles on your girl’s body. If your performance is good you should be proud. Especially if you are thinner or smaller man in body size this should be a praised accomplishment.

           There could be complications being with a woman bigger and stronger than you. Some gals just may not know their own strength. However, getting physically intimate with a muscle woman is not like a WWE match. Let’s assume our Amazon does not want to practice MMA for a second. Copulation really involves the lower body were the reproductive organs are located. Unless our strong woman in question is wrapping her legs around you as hard as she can, there’s nothing to fear. Some guys like it rough. Take a risk my fellows it eliminates the dullness of life. If our gals are getting too rough remember the safety word. There is no shame in saying she is hurting you. If you want to be macho just let her go at it. A man  could have the best night of his  life. Why would you want to miss out on that ?

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 Getting certain women can be a dramatic ego boost. Being with a strong woman just is a demonstration of how much of an alpha man you can be. It takes a man of extreme strength to handle women of high quality.This should not be regulated to a one night stand. You’ll probably want to see her again and again. Few men would express it publicly, but there is something sexy about a physically powerful woman. Gym bros should be more than willing to be with ladies that share their interest. If not that means more muscle women for us average Joes. After awhile you just get tired of women falling for the same gorilla size jocks; let other men have a chance. Women may only be attracted to men solely for their status, but women with more rational judgement select men  of character. Who knows ? Maybe opposites can attract.

        Having a relationship with a female bodybuilder would definitely be a unique experience.  For one thing, you almost become a celebrity with all the stares in public. This may bother you at first, however there is a thrill to getting attention by way of the woman you are with. A bashful person may be overwhelmed by this fact. Others may take it negatively, but the stares and attention may not be out of disgust or disdain. It could be simple curiosity. Just like that you have become famous with your female bodybuilder.

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It is  the Kardashian effect . Do nothing and become famous. The only downside to this is that pretty women get the attention of other men. Don’t be jealous or frustrated; she’s with you after all.  It’s highly unlikely she’ll run off just with another guy because she gets one compliment or a passing glance. When you are with a woman like this, attention from other people is unavoidable.  Who cares what other people think ( if they do that in the fist place) . Judgment only comes from the closed minded and people who don’t try to understand. Just sit back and enjoy the extra attention.

      Goal driven women may not have as much time for you. A competitive female athlete has a very structured schedule. Being with her much as you would like just may not be feasible.  This may be a downside, however it has benefits. Often couples may enjoy long periods of one another’s company. After awhile people may just need their personal space. This is not pushing a person away rather having time to one’s self. Some women feel that all of a man’s attention should be devoted them, but really do not need to do the same in return. Men continually have to put more effort into relationships. There is even more labor in simply starting one. A woman with a certain focus may not demand things to such a degree that you feel more like a servant. Strong women have a level of independence, which means they do not have the same insecurities that are projected by other women. The real insecure ones become jealous when you engage in conversion with other women, have the need to know where you are at all times, or constantly ask  how you feel about them. Trust simply is not there. The strong and confident woman trusts you. When you see her after training it will be more of a delightful treat.

        There is an advantage of being with a fit woman which is related to health. A fit woman will keep a man healthy. It has been proven that men who are married do live longer on average ( well so do sheltered house cats). Eating out may have to be reduced. Burger King and McDonald’s are not part of an athlete’s diet. Well, maybe on occasion a cheat meal can be allowed. At least seeing  your partner eat healthy may inspire you to do so.  Positive encouragement is the best method for long term change in lifestyle choices. A healthy woman can keep a man healthy. The diet will be sugar and mostly fat free, but you will be full. Chicken, eggs, and vegetables could be your diet. Another benefit to being with a female bodybuilder is a personal exercise partner. It is easier to remain dedicated when a person is there providing support. She will also get more motivated in her goals as well. The point is to elevate one another. A strong woman may help improve both your fitness and health. There could be psychological benefits as well. A woman that takes care of herself would certainly not let her man fall into decline.

        The fun side overall would be to experience a woman both physically and emotionally who is different. Exposure to an assortment of people allows us to grow. Don not seek conformity or the same thing out of life. Embrace variety and great things will follow. Broscience only thinks about the physical part of a relationship; one should be looking at the full benefits of a long term engagement. Maybe you and your Amazon princess can frolic off into the sun set. It may be your dream come true. It is funny how so many people disparage something before they even try it. Those who claim they do not like women of such appearance contradict themselves when going got with one. Changing your mind is fine, but acting like you are not a recent convert is not. The internet has shown there are a portion of men that do not find a muscular woman unappealing. To them they are their ultimate dream and fantasy. Even some large muscle bros are into muscle women. It makes sense seeing as it is a woman that shares their passion. Broscience does not get it. Buff babes are the best thing on Earth. You just need to open your eyes to see the greatness in front of you.

A Confutation To Broscience : The Fun Side of Being With A Female Bodybuilder

Why Female Muscle Is The Sexiest Thing Ever

Everyone has their own  concept of beauty and attractiveness. The mistake is that some believe it is only one paradigm. The modern era is seeing women define beauty on their own terms. Whether body positivity  can be considered a feminist statement or a temporary fad has yet to be seen. Even before such a movement, women were changing their bodies in a way that was once thought impossible. Women in sports and fitness developed bodies that are physically powerful. Highly developed musculature may be a turn off to some people on a female body, but to others it is another form of beauty.  The image of female strength can either induce feelings of wonder, trepidation, lust or disdain. Although many are closed minded when seeing something different to a person who admires the female body in various forms can see the pulchritude of the female mesomorph. People who do not like the idea of a strong woman can even admit that their bodies  are  impressive.  The effort and dedication is not only a testament to physical strength, but strong mental drive. This is why female muscle is the sexiest thing ever. Their body becomes a living work of art with the aesthetics of traditional sculpture. The areas considered traditional beauty marks on women are enhanced. Power is sexy whether it is physical or mental. These are just a few explanations why female muscle can be attractive.

          Women with such strength and physical power are not that common. They are in many ways unique. They are women with strength greater than average men, but have their feminine allure. The strong woman breaks that traditional codes of gender roles, by defining them on their terms. This makes for a new and dynamic interpretation of feminine beauty. The gentle softness is contrast with a rock hard image of strong bodies.Combining these two elements show a body that is more voluptuous  that could be imagined on a female form. Being too thin does not give the body shape. additional curves enhance and exaggerate the female figure. Some women have the goal of obtaining an hour glass like shape. The muscular woman does too, but does it by other means. Developing the upper body to a high degree makes the waist look smaller. Other women acquire a larger waist, but it does not make them look block like. The female muscular body has a a magnificent fullness.

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The combination of beauty and physical power is unique. This was once thought to be a male only quality, however women seem to have given it a feminine touch with this new paradigm. The attractive aspect is that they are challenging the norm. If every woman looked this way, it would not be so special. Body image conformity demands that men and women look a certain way to suit gender role norms. This is unrealistic, because individual can vary vastly in appearance. The error is that beauty is assumed to be one thing or entity. The beauty ideal  can be different depending on personal preference, culture, and time period. The muscular woman in many ways is a new revolutionary concept. Women have defined what is beautiful based on their terms. Women are not just presenting muscular physiques on bodybuilding stages, but other sports as well. Only the elite become the best champions in their sport. Women of different appearance can be more than just a curiosity; there is a sexual allure.

          It is no secret that when people describe what is attractive they mention parts of the body. This could include features of the face, chest, lower, and upper body. The lower body on women specifically the legs and posterior are of particular interest to certain men. The muscular woman’s body only enhances these areas to the highest degree. The gluteus maximus on most of the women are highly developed. Before the popular fitness craze, female athletes were already doing training of this body part.   Sometimes it may also make a person admire other areas of the female body that normally are not given focus. The upper body was thought to be an area that women should not train for aesthetics. Yet, doing so gives women wonderful back development.

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Biceps can even be attractive to the lover of female muscle. Some men do not like it because they think it is a male quality to have strong arms. However, women have shown that their is a graceful charm that comes with it.Women flexing their arms can be both amusing and arousing.  Breasts to others can be considered a beauty mark. When women train to this degree, breasts may decrease in size. Weightlifting does not increase breast size, but can improve pectoral muscle strength. Women do not need large breasts to have a nice physique. Granted, every woman has a difference in breast size. A woman with pecs can still fill out her chest. People find different parts of the body attractive. The female body shape has an elegance and majestic pulchritude. The only way to describe this is to imagine looking at nature. The mountains, forests, or steppes induce feelings of admiration due to their beauty. The love of the muscular can be more then just simple lust; it can be admiration.

        Admiration for the physically strong woman comes from challenging the status quo , embracing confidence, and having  charisma. Women have to deal with double standards in relations to behavior and the activities they choose to do. The muscular woman has mastered the complete control of their bodies. They molded, sculpted, and trained their bodies to the highest degree. The responses that their bodies generate prove that this is a radical statement about what women are capable of. The 20th century and 21st century have seen women all around the globe become more powerful politically and socially. While challenges still remain, it seems that the women being subordinates is over. The women of the sports world are embracing strength and some are pushing themselves to their maximum.

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Clothes cannot even hide such powerful looking bodies. So great their muscular development has become, they almost seem like living statues. The female body was at one time thought to be weak or lesser than that of men. The female body is capable of many astounding things. Giving birth is one that is easily recognized, which requires an more enduring strength. However, women can gain an impressive amount of physical prowess, which stuns people who have more traditional ideas about women’s bodies. Sometimes the status quo most be disrupted to allow for progress. The strong woman has muscled her way into what were thought to be manly pursuits and presenting a new paradigm. The new woman is not just independent or strong willed; she has the strength of body. There is something women gain psychologically from engaging in strength sport. Many say they have a greater self confidence. The pride comes from what they have accomplished and the challenges they overcame in the process. The new found confidence spreads to other areas of life. A woman with confidence  can be an attractive attribute  and women of this level have an unlimited supply. The muscular woman projects a charisma that supporters cannot ignore. Seeing them on stage or competing creates an even bigger magnetism. It may be perplexing to people who do understand the attraction to female muscle, but these are a few general reasons. The attraction or erotic nature does not come from appearance. The force and charm of personality are a factor.

     The fetish element cannot be forgotten. There is a misconception to view a sexual fetish as abnormal, but it is not. It is a form of sexual expression that people have. The sexual fetishes related to muscular women relate to stenolagnia and cratolagnia. This is arousal from the display of muscles or the demonstration of strength. The sexiest part about this is that women display their bodies with a great sense of pride. To the lover of female muscle there is nothing better than biceps, abs, glutes, or pecs. Mixed wrestling shows the full extent of  the muscular woman’s physical power.

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Normally , men are stronger than the women they are with but in this situation roles are reversed. The muscular woman can be physically imposing. There is a gratification that some men get from having a woman over power them. It should be noted that woman also experience some form of satisfaction from physically dominating men. Here a man is in her compete control and unable to do anything about it. Sometimes its not just wrestling it extends to another activity known as muscle worship. This does not involve women physically dominating a man, rather a man admiring a woman’s body. Others may not appreciate the aesthetic, however the lover of female muscle can see the voluptuous pulchritude of an athletically developed female figure. These fetish related activities or practices link to the idea of power.

        Power is sexy. There are many types of power. Mental power can be the ability to use intellect to produce great works or have acumen in negotiation. The power to influence people is related to charisma.  Physical power meaning a person of great athletic prowess can be attractive for women. There remains some objections or aversion to such strong female bodies, however there are men who find them irresistible. A paradigm shift has occurred in which a strong and independent women are praised. Backlash occurs with any change, yet this development will not vanish. As there is a growing presence of women in the public sphere and multiple areas of society, it would make sense that another step would be taken. Mastery of  one’s physical self is the next step. The sports women of the modern era have feminized physical strength and power. It is not intimidating or unladylike its a new type of woman. The male attraction comes from seeing that confidence and power. Some men may want women as subordinates or submissive, but that is not suitable for a man of more open minded taste. A strong man and handle a strong woman.

       People question why some men like the physically strong woman. The answers are similar to the answers given for liking any other woman . A certain appearance, personality type, or other factor is at play. If seen from this perspective, the love of the muscular woman is not that unusual. Female muscle can be sexy. The lover of female muscle just appreciates different versions of beauty. Society has not caught up with this idea as whole. The obsession in regards to a single beauty standard is driven by a profit motive and a bias against women in particular. Women who look different or refuse to conform are ostracized. Supporters also get some negative criticism. This does not deter people from doing what they do or enjoying what they like.  What could have been a small niche could be larger than imagined. Surfing through the internet and social media platforms demonstrate there are people who like the idea of a strong woman. Few may admit their support publicly, yet the anonymity   of online use allows a person to express themselves more. The online traffic related to women’s sports or muscular women in particular is not just people who stumble upon it or view it out of curiosity.  The muscular woman is an embodiment of grace, power, and pulchritude.

Why Female Muscle Is The Sexiest Thing Ever

Livestrong : How To Tone Muscles Without Bulk

 

Tone and Bulk

The terms tone and bulk are used constantly in fitness publications.  It should be realized that these have no basis in exercise physiology and rarely appear in sports science texts. Tone and bulk are more colloquial words rather than an anatomical description.  They describe a person’s idea of muscular aesthetics. There are multiple opinions and when discussing women’s bodies there is a level of controversy. The image of the muscular woman generates many responses, but disgust should not be one of them. Women should not fear gaining muscle or looking strong. Often fitness professionals assure women bulking up is not biologically possible for a woman to do. Women bodies are capable of building strength and muscle despite differences in sexual dimorphism. Women compete in bodybuilding,crossfit, and weightlifting. Each has varying degrees of muscularity. The bulk up fear is related to “looking like a man.” What many fail to realize is that even the large women are not as big as they seem. Strong women do not look like men, they just have significant musculature. Knowing this, one can conclude bulking and toning are nothing more than terms giving an idea of a particular appearance. The notion you can tone without bulk  seems ludicrous if you have a basic understanding of  muscular hypertrophy. Erin Zeggert gives a general training program for building muscle. A correct revision of the text would be how to induce muscular hypertrophy to a certain level. To understand why this proclamation is flawed it must be approached from a perspective of exercise science.

          Tone and bulk must be defined to give a correct answer to the question. Zeggert states ”    there is no real definition of toned in the fitness world, but it is commonly accepted that getting toned involves adding muscle to have some muscle definition and losing fat. ” If there is no real definition then how can it be a fitness goal ? This seems more dependent on perspective. To some the toned look could be bulky. A toned woman would be bulky in comparison to a thin woman or man.  The size of the muscles can be misleading. Some women may look bigger than they actually are in person. Then there is a problem of quantifying . There is no specific range in which a woman goes from a toned to bulky classification. How muscular a person get depends on their genetics, training, diet, and natural strength prior to exercise. A woman with more muscle prior to training is going to have more muscle mass gain compared to a woman does not.  This means a woman who has an ectomorphic body type will have a harder time adding mass.

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A woman with limited amount of muscle mass just starting a training program.
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A woman that is considered toned. Compared to the image above she would be bulky in comparison.
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When the term bulky is used it normally is in reference to female bodybuilders.

There are women who might fall in between bulky and toned. No such term exists for women with that body type. The terms bulky and toned can only be used to classify certain types of bodies that have undergone some form of exercise or fitness training.  Physique aesthetics are more so about presentation, rather than functional fitness. When fitness publications use the term bulk, they normally mean size. There is a word that already exists for that and it is called muscle mass and weight. Female bodybuilders have the largest amount of muscle,but it is not just amount building yourself as much as possible. Symmetry,definition, conditioning, and muscle shape are important elements. Size is not the only element a truly aesthetic physique has. The denotations of bulk and tone can vary . The terms do not have a use scientifically, rather it a general description of the amount of muscle carried on the body. Creating a certain look requires both weight training and attention to diet.

         It must be understood why from a perspective of histology why “bulk muscle” and “toned muscle” does not exist in a biological sense. Histology is the study of the microscopic structure of tissues. Examining muscle cells between a bulky or toned body would not show cells or tissues being radically different. If a biopsy were to be done between what is considered a bulky and toned woman there would be little cellular differences.  There are three types of muscular tissue. This includes cardiac muscle, smooth muscle, and skeletal muscle.

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Looking at muscle under a microscope from a “toned” or a “bulky” woman one can confirm that it is not radically different. It should be noted there is a difference in the attributes of muscle fiber types. Type II muscle fiber is designed more for explosive physical power compared to more endurance based type I muscle fiber. The body consists of connective tissues, nervous system tissue, epithelial tissue, and muscle tissue. Cells are the building blocks of living organisms. Cell theory has three major tenets. The first is all things considered living are composed of cells. The second tenet states that the cell is the basic structure of organisms. Cells can only come into existence from pre-existing cells. The process of cellular differentiation happens when a stem cells changes for a particular tissue. Neurons and muscle cells are not the same,but they have a common origin from stem cells. Cell theory was pioneered by Matthias Schleiden and Theodore Schwann in the 19th century. It was Schwann who began to classify cells, which would later give rise to modern histology. Schleiden  was a botanist who through observation of plants that cells were forming from other cells. This indicated that nuclei played a major role in cell division. Myogenesis describes the cellular development of muscle tissue. This occurs in both women who either appear toned or bulky. Being bulky or tone is a matter of perspective rather than biological or physiological reality.

        Building what is called a toned body is just adding some muscle. However, there are exercises and certain methods that are required to attain a certain look. Adding size or definition requires the reduction of body fat. General weight loss will  not produce a toned appearance rather if done to a certain degree it will produce an ectomorphic body type. This goal can be achieved through exercise and a change in diet. There are some possible risks to dramatic weight loss. Bone mass and muscle mass may suffer,if excessive dieting is done. Some women could even develop an unhealthy relationship with food and their own bodies. Being too thin is not healthy, even though mass media representations present it as such. It should be noted also when you train, looking like another person or an ideal can be an unrealistic goal. How you look is dictated by your phenotype and genetics. The images that are seen on fitness magazines may not realistic goals that the majority of the population can attain. However, if there is enough consistency in diet and training progress can be made. The appropriate mind set and approach is critical to reaching particular fitness goals.

          The question of cardiovascular exercise normally comes up in the discussion of women and fitness. There is a major error Erin Zeggert makes when suggestion that cardio can help in producing a toned  body. Cardio exercise is not enough to build muscle and it is thought that adding too much may effect the total amount of muscular gains. There is the benefit of such exercise burning more calories in comparison to just lifting weights. Any amount of exercise is good for health, but it is important to get the most benefits. Some women think that the best way to lose weight is to just get on a treadmill can eat less. This is incorrect,because it is not only ineffective it wastes time.

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If you are doing only cardio exercise, strength and muscle will not increase. This can increase aerobic capacity, but have little effect on the health of the muscular system. Livestrong goes off the guidelines of the American College of Sports Medicine.  The recommendation 150 minutes of cardio at moderate activity level. Livestrong advises “Any activity that gets your heart rate into the target zone can be used so choose something you will enjoy and will stick with.” Zeggart also writes “target heart rate is calculated as 60 to 80 percent of your maximum heart rate.” The 150 recommendation seems like too much cardio if the intent is to create a particular physique aesthetic. This may not be even useful for weight loss. The calculation is 220 minus a person’s age. A woman who is 32 years of age would have a maximum heart rate 188. One with a general understanding of anatomy can see why this equation is a problem. Women have smaller hearts than men and lower aerobic capacity. However, using this same measure would give the same heart rate for both sexes. There needs to be a new equation to accurately calculate women’s maximum heart rate. This demonstrates that exercise science has a limited understanding of how sex differences influence women’s physical fitness. Cardio cannot be completely condemned. Cardiovascular exercise can enhance stamina and aerobic capacity.

        If a woman is attempting to build a physique or strength weight training is the best method. Strength and muscle can be built even without access to weights. Push ups, lunges, and sit-ups can build a certain degree of strength. Lifting weights can build muscle and strength more efficiently. Livestrong reveals “the American College of Sports Medicine recommends at least two resistance training workouts per week on non-consecutive days using free weights, machines, resistance bands or body weight.” There are many methods to build a body,but it has not been determined which is the best. So far using all of these could be helpful depending on the fitness goal objective. Challenging the body and specifically the muscle will induce changes due to exercise stimuli.

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Livestrong makes the recommendation that “each workout should have eight to 10 exercises working each muscle group.” This means that both the lower and upper body should be worked. Fitness literature tends to put emphasis on women’s lower body development. The intent should be to strengthen bones and muscles. Attaining the toned arms that women desire is simply adding muscle to the biceps brachii, deltoids, and triceps barchii. There is also the suggestion to work in a 12 repetition range to see substantial change in muscular development. Toning as some people refer to it still requires a certain degree of progressive overload. While a training schedule is essential rest is also equally important. Rest days should be periods in which no exercise is done so that muscle tissue can recover. When it recovers muscular hypertrophy will occur. Lifting heavy at lower repetition can increase strength and lifting lighter weights at higher repetitions can enhance muscular endurance. The training regimen should focus on lifting rather than cardio to reach a certain physique aesthetic.

         Diet and food consumption is a major part of fitness. Women should keep in mind some differences. Metabolic function for women is lower even at basal rate. Women also metabolize more of their food in to fat storage. Due to endocrinology, women also have a harder time losing weight. What this means is that food consumption should be adjusted in relation to activity level.Eating less will ultimately cause failure,because it will disturb metabolic function. Diet should be balanced in proteins, carbohydrates, along with some fat. High sugar or food that contains limited nutritional value should be avoided. Sugar however should not be abandoned completely. An occasional dessert or cheat meal will not harm health or sabotage a fitness goal. If fats and sugars are consumed in excess, this is when it can have negative effects on the human body. Traditionally, it was the food pyramid that was used to give a basic guideline to healthy eating. The updated version is referred to my plate guidelines. The charts and guidelines are either not specific enough or just simply are not grounded in nutrition based science. They may come in useful as a basic introduction to health science.

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Such charts may have to be adjusted in relation to a person’s age,sex, and health condition. For a highly active person, they may require more food compared to a person who is mostly sedentary. For a person who is attempting to manage weight a gradual readjustment of eating habits has to be done. The major error people make is to reduce calories to the point of starvation. Doing this only crates disordered eating and interrupts normal biological function. Seeing as humans are heterotrophs food is fuel for our bodies. The citric acid cycle explains how food is broken down and used for cellular metabolic function. This process is an intersection of both biochemistry and physiology. Energy is released in increments from respiration is a series of biochemical reactions. Glucose will divide into small units known as acetyl groups. Following this acetyl groups then merge with oxaloacetate and  six-carbon compound   will be produced known as citrate. Citrate needs enzymes to break it down and it will transform into a four-carbon  oxaloaceate. Energy is produced in the form of adenosine triphosphate. This then enables various metabolic processes in cells of the body. Acetyl groups are derived from the food that we consume.

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There are multiple factors involved in healthy eating and nutrition. A good place to begin a change is to examine the nutrition facts on food labeling. Approaches become more complicated when taking into account somatotype . Endomorphs have to be careful about nutrition and diet. Ectomorphs would struggle in comparison to gain any weight. Diet and exercise are both essential to obtaining a certain look .

         Now that is has been established that toning and bulking are nothing more then general descriptions of physiques, there are some myths that must be addressed. Women fear that they will drastically increase in size from weight training and lose femininity. That claim is unfounded. Women can build muscle and still be attractive. The real problem is the bias against women who do not follow body image conformity. The large women seen on stage are not as big as one would assume. If we compare male and female bodybuilders in terms of weight the notion of women being “too big” is laughable. Stan Mcquay weighs about 202 lbs. Margie Martin weighs 154 lbs. Looking at the pictures of both of them, one would assume Margie is too big. Her weight is not that massive at all,but by certain standards she would be called “bulky.” Andrea Shaw would weigh less than Shawn Ray during his competitive career. Shawn’s biggest weight was 215 lbs. The average male bodybuilder easily exceeds past the 200 lbs range. Even if some women have the ability to gain significant mass, maintaining  it takes considerable effort.

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The image of Mina Mituskoa when she competed and her retirement from the sport. The only thing that happens to muscles is they atrophy when exercise is not done.

When a person builds it does not remain permanent. The opposite of muscular hypertrophy is atrophy. Muscular atrophy occurs when muscles are not in use or exercised. Muscles do not turn into fat when training stops. The only way weight can be changed is if diet is drastically altered. The image of Mina Mitsukoa demonstrates that muscles do not shift into fat. The image on the left show her when she competed as a bodybuilder and  the left shows her in her current career as an ophthalmologist. The difference is that her muscles are smaller due to the fact she is not training for competition. Knowing this about muscles has wider applications. Astronauts spending long periods of time in space must exercise regularly to maintain  bone  and  muscle mass. Another myth related to women’s fitness is that women are too weak for weight training.  As Crossfit athletes, Olympic lifters, and bodybuilders women’s bodies are  capable of  gaining  physical strength. Muscular hypertrophy operates in a similarly in both sexes. The difference is  related to degree in muscular gains which is related to  size, endocrine function , and genetics. What can be extrapolated from this information is that tone and bulk are just general terms for an appearance of a physique. Toning muscle without bulk is more of a paradox,because both involve lifting weights and eating a certain way.

Livestrong : How To Tone Muscles Without Bulk