Monday, October 30, 2006

Does Sun Tanning Help To Build Muscle

In a word... no!

Getting a sun tan will NOT help you build muscle mass.But the process of getting a tan is similar to one of gaining muscle.

That's why I use the "sun tanning" analogy when explaining to clients why it's important not to overtrain.
Here's what I mean...

If you're looking to build lean muscle, I want you to first work on getting a tan. (Although that may be tough for us living here in the frigid northeast!)

I can see it now, people are going to line up at their local tanning salon, telling the clerk they need to start building some muscle.

Well, let me save you from stares of confusion from the salon owners.

The Truth

The cause and effect relationship between the sun and tanning illustrates a point I want to make about working out too much.

I must get 3 or 4 emails each day from people wanting to know why they're not building muscle as fast as they'd like to. They tell me they're working each muscle group as often as possible.

Well, the thing is, there's no law that says if you double your lifting time, you double your results. Usually, if you double the amount of time you lift, you actually lessen your results.

It's because weight lifting is closer to the "Less is More" theory than the "More Is Better" one. So I want to show you how getting a tan explains why you do not want to train a muscle group more than once a week.

** Side Note**

I spend a lot of time in my "Simple Steps To Get Huge And Shredded" program explaining the concept of too much training.

It's that important. You need to know exactly how often to train. Too much or too little will produce negative results. So in my "Simple Steps" program, I show clients exactly how much training is required to get the desired benefits.

For more on that program....

http://www.shawnlebrunfitness.com/getshredded.html

** End Side Note**

Getting a sun tan is a cause and effect relationship. The sun is the cause and the tan is the effect. In other words, the sun is the stimulus and the tan is the result.

When you get a tan, what is actually happening is your melanocytes are producing melanin pigment in reaction to ultraviolet light in sunlight. Ultraviolet light stimulates melanin production.

The pigment has the effect of absorbing the UV radiation in sunlight, so it protects the cells from UV damage. You have to expose yourself to UV for a short period of time to activate the melanocytes. By repeating this process over 5 to 7 days pigment builds up in your cells to a level that is protective.

What If I Get Too Much Sun?

What happens when you get too much sun?

That's right, you get a burn, something you do not want to happen. Too much of the stimulus leads to a negative result. So the key is to find the right amount of sun for the desired effect. Too little sun results in no tan and too much sun results in a burn.

How Does This Relate To Building Muscle?

Muscle growth happens by overloading a muscle with heavy weight and then allowing it to rest and recuperate. In this case, the lifting of heavy weight is the stimulus and, if the environment is properly set up, the result is lean muscle growth. The proper "environment" for muscle growth is rest and proper nutrition (high protein, moderate carbs, plenty of water).

If you train a muscle group (biceps, triceps, etc) more than once each week, it doesn't get a chance to recover. And as a result, it will not grow or become stronger.

It's like going back out in the sun for too long. Overexposure to the sun leads to a burn. Overexposure to lifting leads to overtraining. When overtraining occurs, muscle and strength gains come to a screeching halt.

So to maximize muscle growth, you need to train each muscle group only once a week. Too much weight training (stimulus) will produce negative results.

If you don't allow your muscles to rest, recover, and get ready for the next workout, you're doing the same thing as if you went back out into the sun for too long. Too much of a stimulus can produce negative results. Just the same as too little of something.

There's a fine line you have to walk when it comes to both tanning and training to build muscle. More of each will not produce the best results.

It takes experience and tracking your results to learn how long and how often to train in order to get the best results possible.

If you want to speed up your results by skipping the learning curve, check out my "Simple Steps To Get Huge And Shredded" training program I mentioned above:

http://www.shawnlebrunfitness.com/getshredded.html

It's a step-by-step, "what-to-do and exactly how-to-do-it" system that's literally a roadmap... a blueprint... a muscle-building formula you can use as a shortcut.

So if you want to start building muscle a lot faster, check out "Simple Steps". Oh yeah, and start working on your tan ;-)

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