America as a nation, considering how it started, has grown and expanded dramatically. Everything in America has grown and expanded in one way or another: businesses, national parks, ideas, beliefs. Most of the time, this growth is for the better. It is for the better because it helps America and its people become well rounded. Unfortunately in recent years, people have become well rounded and started to grow and expand in an unhealthy manner. So what do some people do to fix this unhealthy lifestyle? They start to work out and eat right. Though working out and eating right will decrease a person’s overall size, there are parts of them that are still growing. These parts are muscles. Muscles are what make people move. So when people workout, their muscles grow – but how? Muscles grow through a three step process: muscle tension, muscle damage, and metabolic stress.

In order to get muscles to grow, a person must progressively lift heavier and heavier weights – to put tension on the muscles. Putting tension on the muscles is like setting off an alarm clock to something called “Satellite Cells.” Satellite cells act basically like when people order takeout food. The satellite cell is a person, and the body is the fast-food joint. The cell orders the specific nutrients and ingredients it needs to start building muscle mass, and lifting heavier weights is like a growing appetite in a person that makes them order more things from the fast food joint. As the weight-lifting increases appetite, the cell orders more food, and the body delivers. But it is not just muscle tension that is needed. Muscle damage contributes to the process.

Muscle damage is as simple as it sounds. When working out, the process of muscle tension is taking place; and when tension is being put on the muscles, they begin to tear. The tears are like two cliffs in the muscle – and how are two cliffs crossed between? By making strong bridges to connect the two sides. In this case, the bridges are smaller strands of muscle, and there are hundreds of these strands of muscles stretching out to connect and heal the tear. Once the gap is sealed, a reinforcement of pure muscle grows over the new bridge to cover it – like a scab on a cut. That is when muscles start to “build” because muscle is being added.

The final phase of building muscle is “metabolic stress.” Metabolic stress is when a bunch of healing cells rush in around the muscle to help heal a tear. Some people have a lot more cells, so this means the muscle is healed from the damage but not made stronger – it is just reinforced in a bulky manner. This is why someone could have a thin physique and still could be much stronger than a bulky bodybuilder. This process is known as “sarcoplasmic hypertrophy.” But this only occurs when someone has too many cells rushing at once. Normally, an average number of cells will heal muscles and increase in size steadily.

People have started to grow and expand in an unhealthy manner and when they workout, they want to both lose weight and gain muscle. Muscle gain happens through muscle tension (putting tension on the muscles by lifting weights), muscle damage (when the muscle is torn by the tension), and metabolic stress (when the healing cells come in and fix the damage). This process is something that takes place in the human body every time someone works out to gain muscle. People should be informed before they workout so they will understand how to be safe and sure of what they are doing to their bodies. This what the Bible has to say about the human body: “Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? If any man destroys the temple of God, God will destroy him, for the temple of God is holy, and that is what you are” (1 Corinthians 3:16-17). If the body is a temple for God, then it must be maintained. It would be a great day for American citizens to be the “biggest” in the world because of their muscles rather than the opposite.


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