What should you believe about building muscle?

Fit & Training door thijs

Facts and fables; you can find them about pretty much any subject. When it comes to building muscle, you read (and hear) different stories from different sides. It can get quite confusing, right? We found so too. Therefore, we have been looking to find the truth behind some muscle-building myths.

1. Women become too masculine from strength training

We've either said it ourselves or we have heard someone else say it, "I don't want to train too much because you become so masculine." This is absolutely not true. Men and women are built differently and have different hormones. Men have much more testosterone, the male hormone, making them able to build more muscle mass. As a woman, you have less testosterone, causing you to build muscle mass less quickly than men. In fact, strength training actually emphasizes the female curves. Strength training helps you get a tight but, belly and legs. As your body gets tighter, there will be more emphasis on your curves. So, from doing strength training you definitely won't look manly!

2. You can convert fat into muscle

Sounds good, right? Converting all the fat you have now into muscle, doesn't it sound like a dream? Well, that's because it is. The process of building muscle has nothing to do with losing fat. It's not possible to convert fat into muscle. However, building muscle can be combined with losing fat. This is because the strength training that you do to build muscle enables your body to burn additional calories. As a result, in combination with a healthy diet, you create a negative energy balance. To provide you with enough energy, your body burns fat reserves. In short: to build muscle, you should do strength training, which burns calories and helps with fat loss, but muscle cannot be converted directly from fat.

3. Your body can only process 20-30 grams of protein per meal

This is also not true. If you exercise a lot, your body needs a lot of protein to recover. The amount of protein that your body can process is therefore dependent on a large variety of factors. For example, how many calories you burn daily, how much you exercise, and how intensive these exercises are lean body mass and many more factors. You can imagine that someone who is doing a lot of intense exercises needs much more protein than someone who is sitting behind a desk all day.

4. Protein shakes are necessary when building muscle

Protein shakes, I love them! So many different flavors, my cupboard is full of them. But, are they really necessary? No, they are not. What is necessary is that you get enough protein to build muscle. How you get those proteins does not matter. If you eat a boiled egg after your workout, it has as much of an effect as that protein shake. A shake is just an easy, tasty, and handy on-the-go way that helps you reach your daily macronutrients.

Hopefully, it's a lot clearer now what you should and shouldn't believe about building muscle. How many of these myths had you already figured out?

Source: Nutrition and Fitness, Guy Dry