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Turning Fat Into Muscle

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The Basics Behind How BodyBuilding Turns Fat Into Muscles

There's a lot of hype about how bodybuilding turns fat into muscles. It's an alluring prospect. Unfortunately, the truth of the matter is that fat does not magically change into muscle no matter how dedicated you are in your routine. Fat cells and muscle cells are distinctly different and are simply not capable of changing into an alternate type of cell no matter how long and how hard you work out.

The good news is that once you adopt a solid bodybuilding program and stick to it over time, it appears as though this is what's happening inside of your body. Over time, you can expect to see a steady decrease in body fat while your muscles increase in both strength and size. Knowing the biology behind your workout will help you work more effectively. Here's what's happening.

How BodyBuilding Increases Muscle Size

Muscles actually grow in two very distinct ways:

1. The number of muscle fibers increases.

2. The diameter of those individual fibers grows.

During workouts, muscle fibers are actually split and new fibers grow from the fragments. This type of increase is the reason that the workout mantra No Pain, No Gain has become so popular.

However, those fibers actually regrow in two distinct ways. In the first, the diameter of the fiber simply increases. However, in the second type of muscle fiber growth, extra sarcomeres are formed. Sarcomeres are the locations where the chemicals within the muscle overload and cause the fiber strands to freeze in place. When more sarcomeres exist, muscles can continue to work longer. That longer workout is fueled by the surrounding fat which is how the apparent magic is actually happening.

How BodyBuilding Eliminates Fat Stores

Bodybuilders understand that the sport affects every aspect of their lives from scheduling regular workouts to the amount of sleep they require each night. In fact, the core of an effective program is your daily diet. By eliminating processed foods, eating several small meals on a daily basis and consuming foods higher in carbohydrates at the appropriate times, those excess fat stores will disappear as your body calls for extra energy during your workouts.

As you train your muscles to become more efficient, they will start pulling needed energy from nearby fat cells. When you workout on a consistent basis, your metabolic rate naturally rises and those fatty deposits seem to melt away. In fact, that analogy is almost literally true. Fat stores consist of long sugar chains which break down and generate heat as they are used during your workouts.

So, even though fat does not technically turn into muscle during your workouts, it sure appears to be the truth. Now that you understand what is really going on within your body, you will have a better idea of how to take care of it. Regular workouts combined with plenty of water, a well-thought-out diet and plenty of sleep can work the magic that is easy to understand.

Jeff Elrod loves everything about family, sports and health and has developed a website to help families focus on staying active together. To learn more, visit

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