“It feels like someone is blowing air into my muscles” is the famous line from Arnold Schwarzenegger uses in the movie “Pumping Iron”.
Yes folks that tightness you get in your muscles while weight training is due to the body’s increasing blood pressure and plays many roles during training.
The body pushes in oxygen and nutrition to the area being worked while pushing out lactic acid and other toxins through the blood.
Stretching the fascia, or the rubber band around your muscle fiber, though pushing blood into an area of the body will allow that muscle to have a longer, sleeker, and thicker appearance.
Full and round muscle bellies are even appreciated by women who are exercising for tone; tone arms and legs can be attained using blood flow principles without the fear of masculine or bulky muscles.
Burn out sets:
At the end of any exercise, with out rest, drop the weight to half of usual amount and continue to do 20+ repetitions forcing blood into the already pre-exhausted muscle–fast as possible to push out those toxins hindering the workout.
Isometric contractions between sets:
In-between sets of an exercise (lets use biceps curl as example) the athlete would hold a pose or flex the muscle being worked for three sets of ten seconds.
One would curl ten repetitions, then during the 45 second rest period, the person would flex their arms as hard as possible three times for ten seconds each, then back to the exercise.
When a person exercising reaches failure at a certain weight and cannot complete a full range repetition at that weight they would keep their good form and continue to move the weight only in the range of motion they are able to.
One would continue to inch the weight up and down until no movement can possibly occur.
Even moving the body in the same range of motion without any weights just to finish off.
Using some or all of these techniques will allow the person to have a nice shape to their muscle fiber.
Both men and women, lifting with entirely different goals, can gain benefit from these idea because of their ability to rid the body of built up toxins during a workout that can interfere with endurance and sustainability of intensity.
Don’t be afraid of the “PUMP” it is one of your best friends in the gym!