Muscles - what kind were you born with?

Muscles - what kind were you born with?

Muscles in your body give you the ability to walk, lift, climb, and carry. They are also used to run, swim, or weight train.

Have you ever wondered why Kipoche became a runner and Schwarzenegger a weight trainer? And what does that have to do with you anyway?

It turns out that the reason that these folks chose to excel at running or bodybuilding lies in their genetic make-up. More specifically, the muscle make-up they were born with. Allow me to explain.

When you are born, you are born with two broad categories of muscles. Fast twitch and slow twitch.

I am simplifying, but slow-twitch fibres are used for endurance—running a long marathon, for example. Fast twitch fibres are used for explosive lifts—carrying a heavy object above your head in a lift and snatch, for example.

Not everyone is born with the same distribution of muscle fibre or ratio of fast-twitch to slow-twitch muscles. So one person could be naturally adapted to long-distance running and another to weightlifting.

Whatever you are born with, chances are you will develop the same muscles. You can't really change the ratio of the muscles you have.

So why does this matter to you?

It pays to work to your natural advantage. There is a painful way to find out by taking a sample of your muscles and then examining them for their relative ratio. A simpler way to do this is to personally examine where you find yourself naturally excelling.

Whatever you excel at, do more of it.

This is not to say do not weight train if you are a natural runner or even enjoy walking. Ideally, do both. Your body is best served when you cross-train.

Cross-training occurs when you do different kinds of things, such as running, swimming, cycling, weight training, climbing, hiking, and so on.

But of course, if you find yourself enjoying one thing because you are good at it, just do more of that.

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