Those who train regularly can quickly become restless if illness or injuries tear them out of their usual training routine. But can a few days without exercise really get you out of breath?
For everyone who is afraid of muscle loss, we asked Zimo Tam! The sports scientist and personal trainer explains when your body actually starts to lose muscles and whether muscles turn into fat.
Loss of muscle – a well-founded fear?
If you don’t train for a long time , builds your body little by little muscle mass from . This is a natural protective mechanism because muscles use up energy. If you no longer train your muscles, this is a signal to your body that it does not have to put into maintenance of muscle mass . Instead, he simply breaks down the muscle mass that is not required.
This muscle mass does not turn into fat , as is often claimed. There are several reasons that you are now gaining weight faster : On the one hand, your daily calorie requirement decreases because you no longer exercise and have less muscle mass. If you continue to eat as before, you now have a excess calories . Your body now stores the excess calories as love handles.
On the other hand, leaves your natural muscle tension after a few days without training after . Your posture is deteriorating and you can already see in the mirror how everything no longer looks quite so tight .
Nevertheless, the fear of rapid muscle loss during a short break from training is unfounded.
When does muscle and strength loss begin?
The muscle and strength loss begins only after several weeks and is even then relatively low . Although you will already feel a difference after about 14 days without training, this loss of strength is relatively small.
Even after 4 weeks without strength training, you will not have any great loss of strength in the area of maximum strength. It looks different, for example, if you train in the strength endurance area . Here your performance can significantly decrease .
How quickly does stamina decrease?
Your endurance decreases significantly faster than muscle strength. This is also the reason why you can notice a greater drop in performance in endurance training . The loss of performance is particularly strong at a high level of training.
Anyone who is at a medium level of training does not have to fear a huge loss of performance . With a longer training break of more than 4 weeks, however, the performance level continues to decline. Especially endurance athletes should try to avoid longer breaks to .
Prevent muscle loss
With a few simple tricks the muscle and endurance loss can be achieved prevent or at least slow down during the compulsory break. Just signal your muscles as often as possible that they are still needed.
If you are currently unable to train with your usual weights in the gym, then get on bodyweight training at home by . Try squats or deadlifts with a box of water as extra weight. Complete an intense core workout or push yourself to your limits with push ups .
Here I will show you how to do squats, push ups and the like.
Even if you cannot work on your maximum strength in this way, you slow your muscle – and strength reduction in this way strong .
You can slow down the degradation of endurance . intensive HIIT units are very suitable for this. The load is different from that of a moderate endurance run, but your cardiovascular system is also very challenged . This means that your body continues to receive a stimulus in order to maintain its endurance performance .
The muscle memory effect
Even if the loss of muscle mass, strength and endurance cannot be completely avoided during a longer break from training, there is no reason to panic. Because your muscles don’t forget that easily.
The reason for this is the muscle memory effect or in German called “muscle memory” . This effect causes your body to achieve a once , naturally Level , recovered faster .
This applies to your maximum strength , strength endurance as well as your conditioning and coordinative abilities in general. How long it will take you to get back to your previous level depends entirely on how high your level was and how long the break was. As a rule, you will notice renewed adjustment of your body after just 2 weeks .
For more tips on functional training, a balanced diet and motivation, visit my fitness blog .
And if you want to find out more about the loss of strength and endurance during training breaks, you can find results on short-term effects of training breaks (up to 4 weeks) and here more about long-term effects of training breaks (longer than 4 weeks) with regard to muscle strength and endurance .
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