Yes! If you are also one of those people, who think that if they will miss one day at the gym, they gonna loose muscle mass, you are wrong. Infact, it can be harmful for your muscle growth. Your muscles need rest to grow. To understand muscle growth, you’ll first have to understand muscle recovery process.
Things to understand
You go to the gym, you do workout, and you expect that your muscle will grow? Wait, it is not that simple. If it was, every had muscles. To make your muscle grow, you’ll have to make your body to feel the need of new muscle fiber. There comes the role of an expert (Fitness Professional), don’t interfere in that. After you hit your muscle with microtrauma, recover initiates.
Muscle growth and recovery
If there is no damage, there is no growth. That’s how your body grows. If you are going to the gym every day, and doing the same workout with same weightload? You won’t grow. It is the microtrauma (damage), which will make the growth happen. But what happens after the damage?
Once you hit your muscle at higher intensities, higher than it’s capacity, it gets damaged. We call it microtrauma. After damage, Neutrophils (white blood cells), which are part of your immune system, identifies the damage and initiate the recovery process and call macrophages on the damaged site to start the process. Macrophages has two different components, M1 and M2. Both are very opposite in nature. M1’s work is to come at the site and initiate inflammatory process to clean the site. That’s the time when you feel the soreness in your muscles. That inflammatory response makes you feel the pain in muscle. It will stay there for some time, which depends on the intensity of damage. The bigger the damage, the longer the time. After M1 completes it’s work, M2 will arrive and initiate anti-inflammatory process. It is kind of heat and cold strategy. Same as you put acid on floor to clean the bacteria before polishing it with some shining stuff. But, there is a switch time which will determine when will M1 go and M2 come. It can be anywhere between 24 to 48 hours, or depends upon person to person. If that switch gets disturbed, inflammatory properties stays for long and can cause muscular hypotrophy. After M2 has completed it’s work, stem cells will come at the place and recover the damaged muscle fiber. The whole process can take anywhere between 72 to 96 hours after a strenuous workout. But remember, I mentioned strenuous workout, not warm up.
Most people don’t even do strenuous workout when they go to the gym. I’ve seen people doing 100kgs of bench press for years. You should know that your body has adapted to 100kgs. Now, it doesn’t need the feel to increase any muscle mass because it has enough to pick that much of weight. If you are doing the same weight as your previous or previous than previous workout? you are just doing a maintenance workout, not strenuous. Strenuous is trying to do more than your muscle’s capacity, either in repetitions or in weights. That’s when your body ll feel the need to grow more muscle mass.
Going gym every day?
Now you know, that your body will grow after strenuous workout. But wait, that’s not the only thing. “THE RECOVERY” is still their as I mentioned that your body will take anywhere between 72 to 96 hours to recover itself after a strenuous workout. So if a person going to the gym every day and doing maintenance workout, muscle will not grow. And if that person will try to do strenuous workout, muscle will still not grow.
Rest will initiate growth
For example, you go to the gym on Monday. You did chest workout and brutally hit it, great. Next day, you went to the gym and you did strenuous legs workout, what? Your Chest muscles are still in recovery process. They will need nutrients. Now, you have another muscle (thighs) which will need nutrients for recovery, which will hinder the recovery of chest and for legs itself because macros will get divided. You will need rest after a strenuous workout for growth.
You want to go to the gym daily? Sure you can go. But don’t mix up things which can become hurdle rather than becoming reward for yourself. Muscle growth is very complex process. Always discuss with a Fitness Professional for favorable workout plans.