効率的に筋肉を大きくする筋トレとは?身体のしくみを理解するだけでトレーニング効果はあがる

筋肉には傷を修復する働きがある。

筋肉は筋繊維と呼ばれる巨大な細胞が束になって構成されています。普通の細胞が肉眼では目に見えないほど小さいのに対して、筋繊維は髪の毛と同じくらいの大きさを持っています。規格外のサイズ故にほかの細胞にはない性質をこの筋繊維は持っており、ダメージを受けて筋肉に損傷が起こるとその部分を修復しようとします。普通の細胞の場合には一度壊れてしまうとゼロから新しいものを作り直すのですが、筋繊維はあまりにもサイズが大きいためにゼロから再び作り直すのはとても大変なのです。そして、この修復する性質を上手に利用したのが筋トレで、適度に筋繊維に傷をつけることで少しずつより強固なものへと作り変えていくわけです。

筋トレをすればするほど筋肉は強くなる。

人間だけでなくすべての生物には過酷な環境に適応しようとする潜在能力があります。まさにこの性質を最大限に活用したのが筋トレです。筋トレを通して筋肉に大きなストレスをかけるとその部位が「このままではまずい」と感じ取り、それに抗うような形で筋肉をパワーアップさせようとするのです。ほかの細胞にもこのような能力は備わっていますが筋繊維は特に外部からのストレスに敏感で、それ故に数か月と言った限られた時間のなかでも見違えるような変化をもたらすことができるわけです。

筋肉の占める割合とは。

全体重のうち何%が筋肉なのかは当然個人差があります。平均的なデータで言うと30歳の男性は約45%程度、30歳の女性なら約40%程度が筋肉だと言われています。当然、日頃から筋トレを積極的に行っている人はこれよりも筋肉量が多くなりますし、逆に何もしていない人や老化が進んでいる高齢の人はこの値よりも少ない可能性が高いです。

速筋と遅筋の違いとは。

筋肉には速筋と遅筋の2種類があると言われています。速筋は筋繊維の収縮するスピードが非常に速く、それ故に得られる運動エネルギーの量も大きいです。一方、遅筋は筋繊維の収縮速度が穏やかなためになかなか疲れないという特徴を持っています。速筋と遅筋は見た目の上でも大きく異なっており、前者の速筋は赤っぽいのに対して後者の遅筋は白っぽく見えます。一般的な人の身体は速筋と遅筋の割合が50%ずつなので筋肉は赤と白の混じったピンク色に見えますが、この割合は体質によってかなり大きな個人差が生じます。例えば、オリンピックの短距離走の選手は瞬発力のある速筋の割合が多いと言われていますし、逆に長距離走の選手はスタミナのある遅筋の割合が多いと言われています。

超回復とは。

筋トレをしたことがある人なら一度は『超回復』という単語を聞いたことがあるでしょう。しかし、実をいうとこの超回復に関するメカニズムはまだはっきりとは解明されていません。筋トレを行って筋繊維に傷をつけるとそれを修復する作用が働き筋肉が大きくなるわけですが、この従来のものを超えて回復するというプロセスを受けて『超回復』と広く呼ばれるようになったのです。ちなみに、筋トレをする時にはこの超回復を常に意識しながら取り組まないといけません。筋肉を効率よく大きくするためには修復が終わったタイミングで再び負荷をかけるのが原則で、同じ部分を鍛えるなら最低でも48時間~72時間くらいの間隔を空けるようにしましょう。

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