Health Why your muscles look so pumped up after the gym (and why they shrink later)

05:05  09 august  2018
05:05  09 august  2018 Source:   9coach.com.au

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Узнать причину. Закрыть. Why Your Muscles Look Bigger After Exercise. KevinDrakeFitness. Загрузка People say their going to get a good pump on at the gym because it looks like their muscles are literally pumped up .

When your muscles get pumped up , they look quite a bit different to how they normally look . Are you happy with your biceps being swollen for a couple hours each week after you train, and then quickly shrinking back to a fraction of their size?

a close up of a persons hand: iStock © iStock iStock It's hard to know whether the best bit about going to the gym is the long-term health benefits or the short-term satisfaction of seeing your muscles look so defined.

The "pump" effect has been capitalised on by bodybuilders for decades who flex their muscles backstage so they look as sculpted as possible in competition. But it's also a phenomenon that everyday strength trainers notice.

"Anyone who goes to the gym and does a reasonably intense workout will notice that," Professor David Bishop, from Victoria University's Institute of Sport and Health, tells Coach.

"It's good for the ego because for an hour or so after your workout, your muscles will have this 'pumped up' look."

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I have noticed that right after I finish my workout, my muscles look full and swollen. They are pumped up and look really big for a few hours which is great. However, after a while it feels like they deflate and they don’t look as pumped up which makes me look much smaller. Why is this happening?

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Professor Bishop says that it happens because your body responds to intense muscle contractions by sending blood that contains nutrients and oxygen to the muscles and it effectively gets "stuck" there.

"When you're doing resistance training, you're massively increasing the amount of blood that's going to your muscles and contracting the muscles is sort of like squeezing a hose, and the blood backs up," he explains.

"It flows into the muscles through the arteries, which are quite deep, but flows out through the veins, which are narrower — so you're getting more blood going into the muscle than can actually leave the muscle."

On top of that, the pressure in the muscles causes plasma, which is the clear part of blood, to squeeze out of the capillaries into the "interstitial spaces" between your capillaries and your muscles.

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This article takes a close look at the reasons why you're not building muscle and gaining weight. So let’s look at our 3,260 calorie diet from above and break it up You put stress on your muscles in the gym , and they grow bigger to cope with the stress.

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"That fluid will build up there and it will take a few hours [to go down]," Professor Bishop says.

You don't get the same effect with something like running because the muscle contractions are less intense.

"You might lift a really heavy weight eight to 10 times, whereas if you go for a run you would be taking thousands of steps," Professor Bishop explains.

"When you're running, the force of contraction is magnitudes lower and [there are moments of rest] when one leg is in the air – there's this contraction, relaxation, contraction that happens when you're running, whereas when you're lifting weights, it's basically a continual muscle contraction for the length of time you're doing the weight-training session."

The only downer of the pump effect is the fact that it goes away after a few hours.

"Some people probably do get disappointed in how awesome they look after a workout and then wake up the next day and find that it's all gone back to normal," Professor Bishop says.

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To understand why this happens, we need to look at what’s going on inside our muscles when we lift weights. In other words, heavy strength training will get you about 80 percent of your results in the gym , and pump training will get you that remaining 20 percent.

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"Your body is really good at returning itself to normal."

But at least you know that if you keep up with the weights, eventually that larger size might be there to stay. 

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