Muscle confusion is a workout program where an individual varies their workouts from day to day to keep the muscles constantly adapting. Traditional workouts use the same exercises day after day in order to overcome a resistance and improve hypertrophy. So, which program is better?
The answer: they are both good, depending on your workout goals. There are so many benefits to exercising in general, such as better cardiovascular function, increased muscle mass and strength, and improved blood glucose levels. Exercising also improves mood and increases blood flow to the brain.
Muscle Confusion vs Traditional Weightlifting
One of the problems with exercising is getting motivated enough to start an exercise program. Once started, we all have trouble staying motivated. This is where the muscle confusion theory can be helpful. Varied exercises and workouts keep you motivated and engaged more. Switching exercises constantly allows you to try several different types of exercises too. Depending on the exercises you choose, muscle confusion can be a great way to strengthen your overall body.
If you are like me and enjoy a set routine, then a traditional workout routine may be more your speed. With traditional lifting you have the same set of exercises performed each day of the week. Variations occur in the rep and set schemes, but types of lifts pretty much stay consistent each week. The benefits to this type of workout program is a potential to maximize your muscle mass. Muscle mass increases when exposed to a similar stress over a period of time on the same muscle. For instance, if you perform the same bicep curls over a month, your biceps will adapt and get bigger to the same stress. Over time you will add more reps and/or weight which will cause the biceps to grow even more.
Both types of exercise programs are great. Choose your goals first, then pursue the exercise program. If you are looking for variety with a lower chance of getting bored, then try a muscle confusion program. This could include Crossfit, Boot Camp, or your own design in a gym or at home. If you are looking to maximize muscle mass, then a traditional bodybuilding program may be for you. Good luck and enjoy!!
Dr Spencer Charlet
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