Strength training and bodybuilding are both very popular terms in the fitness world.
If you google the types of fitness training that will fully focus on the muscles there are very high chances that these two terms will pop up almost immediately.
What really is strength training vs bodybuilding? What are the advantages and disadvantages of these two types of training? When should you practice strength training vs bodybuilding? Strength training vs bodybuilding: Which one is more important?
These are the questions whose answers you will find further in this article.
WHAT IS STRENGTH TRAINING VS BODYBUILDING?
Even though most people who aren’t well-acquainted with fitness might think these two are the same, they are very different.
While strength training focuses on increasing the overall functioning strength of the body, the core function of bodybuilding is to develop increased muscle size or as fitness gurus would put it, to achieve muscle hypertrophy.
Bodybuilding has developed quite an impressive reputation in the fitness sphere, such that every so often bodybuilding competitions are held.
For this reason, a good number of people who practice bodybuilding do it for competitive purposes.
Strength training, on the other hand, is not normally done for competitive purposes.
The only thing you have to focus on when practicing strength training is the amount of force that your muscles can create to lift and move massive objects.
Unlike in bodybuilding, the shape and size of your muscles are not of importance as long as they are working at their highest potential.
SHOULD I STRENGTH TRAIN OR BODY BUILD?
Whether you should strength train or body build depends on the fitness goals you’re looking to achieve.
If you are looking to build muscle resistance, strength raining would be the better option for you.
On the other hand, bodybuilding would be ideal if your goal is to increase your muscle mass.
CAN YOU BUILD MUSCLE FROM STRENGTH TRAINING?
If you practice strength training on a regular basis, you can guarantee that your muscles are going to increase with time.
However, you are not going to gain muscle mass as fast as you would with bodybuilding techniques since strength training is focused on improving your overall strength rather you’re your muscle mass.
HOW MANY TIMES A WEEK SHOULD I LIFT WEIGHTS TO GAIN MUSCLE?
If you want to gain muscle through weight lifting, you should be lifting weights at least three days in every week.
According to research, a training of at least two days a week is required to maximize muscle growth.
THE PROS AND CONS OF STRENGTH TRAINING
Some of the numerous benefits you stand to gain from strength training are;
IMPROVEMENT OF MUSCLE STRENGTH
The most obvious benefit of strength training is that it improves the strength of your muscles. By increasing the resilience and overall performance of your muscles, strength training will make it easier for you to perform your daily duties.
Strength training provides the perfect exercise to improve your heart health.
Professionals recommend doing at least 30 minutes of strength training for five days a week to keep your heart healthy and maintain a healthy blood pressure.
When you focus on increasing the overall strength of the muscles in your body, you’ll notice that your coordination, balance and posture have become much better.
Better coordination helps you avoid injuries like accidental falls which often result from poor coordination.
The ability of strength training to improve your coordination is the reason why it is often incorporated in programs for rehabilitation from injury.
When your body experiences trauma, it is advisable to work on building muscle in the area that was injured to repair damage and reduce the possibility of future recurrence of the injury.
MANAGEMENT OF CHRONIC PAIN
Chronic pain is pain that lasts longer than 12 weeks.
Strength training can reduce the severity of the signs and symptoms of chronic conditions such as back pain and arthritis.
REDUCES RISK OF OSTEOPOROSIS
Practicing strength training can increase the density of the bones in your body by increasing their mineral composition.
This will reduce the risk of your bones becoming fragile as a result of mineral deficiency, a condition medically defined as osteoporosis.
Much as strength training is very effective in building your body strength, here are some of its downsides that you should know of before you begin it;
SLOWER CALORIE BURN
While it’s quite obvious that you don’t go into strength training to lose weight, it is important to note that with strength training you are going to burn fewer calories and at a slower rate than anaerobic exercises.
The good news is you can still burn calories through strength training if you pair it will cardio. To do this, you begin by doing a lot of cardio exercises to lose fat then use weights to build muscle.
Over time, your muscles will start burning calories on their own even when you aren’t actively training.
REQUIRES FITNESS EQUIPMENT
Achieving the ideal results of strength training is very much dependent on having fitness equipment.
You can always make DIY weights but they won’t guarantee the same results as a set of dumbbells or a bench press.
HIGH RISK OF INJURY DURING EXERCISE
With strength training, you will spend a lot of your time repeating movements and lifting weighted items hence pushing your body to its limits.
This means that if you do not perfect your posture and movements, you may end up sustaining injuries.
It is advisable that you seek professional help especially if you are using equipment you are not familiar with.
With the help of a physical trainer, you will be able to perfect your posturing as well as your movements which will enable you attain the desired results in a safer manner.
THE PROS AND CONS OF BODYBUILDING
Some of the advantages of bodybuilding are that it;
BUILDS THE MOST MUSCLE
Bodybuilding will guarantee you more muscle mass than any other exercise if you do it correctly.
Doing it correctly means curating your bodybuilding regimen to include the right number of reps and sets to do during each workout session (workout volume) and the appropriate diet for bodybuilding as recommended by fitness experts.
FOCUSES HEAVILY ON NUTRITION
Bodybuilding is diet-oriented just as much as it is fitness-oriented. Diet is an integral component of bodybuilding training.
Following the bodybuilding lifestyle will have you eating healthy, with adequate amounts of macronutrients and micronutrients in your diet.
Research suggests that elderly people with higher muscle mass live longer than individuals with less muscle mass.
Bodybuilding also boosts cardiovascular strength with is a major cause of ill health in old age.
BETTER LIPID METABOLISM
According to this study, the kind of resistance training bodybuilding offers is more effective than endurance training since it allows you to retain muscles while reducing your fat, which in turn lowers your insulin and cholesterol levels.
Consistent bodybuilding may give you an impressive body aesthetic and (probably) make you look like a Greek god but for before you get too excited, here are some of its disadvantages that you should be aware of;
WEIGHT LIFTS CAN DAMAGE MUSCLES
Using weight lifts that are extremely heavy when you haven’t yet learnt to balance them can cause severe wear and tear to your muscles which may lead to irreparable muscle damage.
GREAT RISK OF INJURY
People who practice body building are at risk of sustaining injuries on various parts of their bodies especially the lower back, shoulders, elbows and knees.
Bodybuilding is often associated with reverse anorexia. This condition is characterized by the extreme obsession to increase muscle size.
Reverse anorexia may also lead to body image issues when the individual constantly feels that their physique is inadequate.
There are many cases of bodybuilders using unorthodox means of gaining muscle mass faster such as steroids. Most of these cases often stem from body image issues.
FINAL THOUGHTS ON STRENGTH TRAINING VS BODYBUILDING
The main difference between strength training vs bodybuilding is the overall muscle strength vs muscle size.
When it comes to importance, none of the two is more important than the other since they serve different purposes.
If you going to practice bodybuilding, make sure you maintain a balanced diet with low fat and enough protein to facilitate muscle growth.
Also, don’t forget that strength training requires you to focus more on increasing muscle strength than size. It is also important that you use precise, well-measured movements during exercise to avoid injury.
Finally and most importantly, remember that with strength training and bodybuilding, results cannot be achieved overnight.
You have to stay consistent and take it a day a day at a time, learning through trial and error as you discover what works best for you. If you need extra motivation to lose weight without strenuous exercise and restrictive calorie-counting, join thousands of other people around the world in our weight-loss accelerator challenge. You will realize unbelievable changes.
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