The Disadvantages of Building Muscle Mass

Shoulders Workout With Barbell
A muscular man is weight lifting in the gym. (Image: Ibrakovic/iStock/Getty Images)

Muscle mass gives you strength and helps prevent injury. Increasing the amount of muscle on your body may be achieved by engaging in strength training. These exercises, which enhance muscle size and definition encompass a wide range of activities including weight machines, resistance bands and exercises using body weight. Building muscle mass has advantages and disadvantages including weight gain and stress fractures.

Initial Weight Gain

An individual who is trying to lose weight and build muscle mass simultaneously may initially gain weight. This condition is temporary. When first starting your diet and strength-training program, your increase in muscle mass may outpace your loss of fat. Using lighter weights and doing more repetitions can minimize the bulking effect causing your weight gain or plateau. Consulting with a fitness trainer gives you personalized and professional help to negate this disadvantage of building muscle mass.

Stress Fractures in Women

Quickly accumulating muscle mass is associated with stress fractures in women, warns the Nutrition and Health of Military Women Subcommittee on Body Composition. A stress fracture presents as a tiny crack in your bone. Embarking on a workout program too intensely and too quickly, along with lifting more weight than you can handle, can cause this skeletal injury and represents one of the disadvantages of building muscle mass. Additionally, the heavy loads and repetitions associated with weight lifting and strength training can cause stress fractures. To avoid stress fractures while building muscle mass, a woman who is out-of-shape must increase the intensity of her workouts incrementally.

Muscle Pain

Muscle aches and pains may result from the activities required to build muscle mass. You may know the saying “No pain, no gain," but overusing your muscles while engaging in strength training and sports results in varying degrees of pain that may persevere for several days. Lifting too much weight or moving in an unusual manner in an effort to build muscles could result in a muscle tear as well as damage to ligaments and tendons as well as the surrounding soft tissue.

Reverse Anorexia

Bodybuilding and the drive to build muscle mass may lead to reverse anorexia. This health condition is characterized by the obsession to constantly increase the size of your muscles. While this drive provides motivation in the beginning, a bodybuilder begins to give up friends, shirk responsibilities and embark on unusual diets to attain his muscle mass goals. An individual with reverse anorexia suffers from an inaccurate perception of his body image, constantly feeling his physique is inadequate despite bulging muscles.

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