In Bodybuilding it’s very important to stimulate the proper muscle fiber type to get you the results you’re looking for.
The truth is, not all bodybuilding programs are created equally. You canât really tell which muscle fiber is which from your outside appearance. Like many things in life it’s whats inside that counts and there happens to be 3 main types of muscle fibers inside in this particular case.
Type I Slow Twitch Muscle Fibers
This first type of muscle fiber that you have in your body is classified as slow-twitch.Â This is the muscle fiber type you would use if you were to run a marathon or any other extended duration – medium-to-low intensity activity.
These muscle fibers have a very high ability to resist fatigue and have a large oxidative capacity.Â They are also relatively slow to contract, therefore you cannot expect a great deal of force generation from these muscles, and thus, will not be intended for exercises requiring a high degree of power.
Type II A Fast-Twitch Muscle Fibers
Type II Fast Twitch and are responsible for the most forceful contractions generated, however, will fatigue the fastest.
For example, if you were to perform an all out set of 3 reps for bench press, you would predominately be using these type I muscle fibers.
The major type of fuel that these muscle fibers are going to rely on is creatine phosphate and stored muscle glycogen (glucose). They will not utilize stored body fat at all due to the fact that they are only able to continually contract for between one and about 20 seconds.
Type II B Fast-Twitch Muscle Fibers
The next muscle fiber is also classified as a fast twitch muscle fiber but not to the extent that type A are.Â This muscle fiber type is mostly utilized in activities that are relatively short in duration, but are not at an all out pace.
For example, if you were to sprint 100 meters, youâll be using mostly type A. If on the other hand, you are to do a running interval at about 80-90% of your max capacity for 30 seconds, this would utilize the type 2A more.
These muscle fiber types are also able to use oxygen to a great extent, as demonstrated by their higher resistance to fatigue and longer duration of contraction abilities.
Training The Muscle Fiber Types
Since type II A are your primary force generators, if you wish to get a higher performance from them youâll need to train using exercises that require you to max out your effort for a short period of time.
Think sprinting at full speed, 1-5 rep sets for lifting, and any type of plyometric activities.
Train your type II B muscles fibers: Youâll want to slightly decrease the force with which you are to contract while simultaneously increasing the time over which you contract ever so slightly.
Aim to target the 6-10 rep range to utilize the fact these muscle fibers have a higher oxidation ability.
Improve your slow twitch muscle fibers:Â Think endurance. This type of muscle fiber will usually require the greatest amount of time to train for improvement because youâll want to focus on simply going âlongerâ.Â This type of muscle has the ability to go for extended periods of time so this is exactly what you want to train it to do.
That’s it for this one, i’ve got to get some rest so I can recover my own muscle fibers =) Stay tuned as I’ve got a badass ab training article coming up, and you’ll definitely want to check it out.
To your strength!
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