The Olive Tree Pilates Blog

How a Lack of Exercise Affects Every Area of Your Health

benefits of pilates holistic health motivation pilates workout Apr 07, 2024
Lauren Wilson, Olive Tree Pilates, TRX Suspension Trainer Straps Workout & Benefits


We need to talk...



And it's important.



Listen...we need to talk about something called hypertrophy and why it is SO very important to your WHOLE LIFE!

I have had too many conversations in the past few weeks, and really over the course of my career in the fitness industry, that have shown me an immense lack of understanding of exercise that I just can't ignore how vital this is for you to understand.


Do you know what hypertrophy is?

Hyper - what?!

Muscle hypertrophy is the growth or strengthening of a muscle. This growth is actually a response to resistance. Let me explain with a little science lesson....

As a muscle contracts to lift, lower, press, or pull against an outside force or weight, the muscle resisting against the force causes tiny microtears and lactic acid build up in the muscle fibers. This microscopic damage sounds small and meaningless but actually leads to the strengthening of the muscle! The microtears and lactic acid cue the muscle repair to occur in those specific areas, fusing cross-sections of new, thicker, stronger muscle fiber to be built. Literally...BUILDING MUSCLE!

So your muscle builds THROUGH resisting against weight. This is where the term "RESISTANCE WORKOUT" comes from.

Resistance TRAINING is the repetition of strengthening the muscles and whole body through pushing against or "resisting" external force, stress, or weight.

If you want your muscles to build and be strong and function the way you were designed to - you MUST use resistance exercises, resistance workouts and resistance training.



Do you know what the opposite of hypertrophy is?


ATROPHY. And let me tell you - you do NOT want this!!

Atrophy is the decrease or wasting away of muscle. Sometimes also referred to as sarcopenia. And you feel TERRIBLE when your muscle is atrophying! Muscle atrophy does not just occur as a natural age-related issue. I strongly disagree with this!

Muscle wasting or weakening can occur just as a stress response! If you are stressed and you are not fueling your body with enough nutrients (yes, even and especially carbs and fat!) - your brain will be pushed into fight or flight which tells your body to store fat and USE THE MUSCLE TISSUE FOR THE SURVIVAL ENERGY THAT IT NEEDS!! Y'all!! This is TERRIBLE!! And you WILL feel terrible when your body is in this state.

And you know what else is SUPER important to understand about hypertrophy and atrophy....cardio or even just general movement does NOT lead to hypertrophy but CAN lead to atrophy!


A KEY fact to remember as you think about how to take care of your health:


You MUST strengthen your muscle (through hypertrophy) or else you will lose your muscle (in atrophy).


Here is what you will experience when your muscle tissue is NOT being built up or strengthened:

  • decrease in energy; specifically from the process of your body burning muscle tissue as fuel
  • potential increase in pain because of muscular imbalance and weakening of the fascia
  • increased/elevated stress response
  • increased appetite for less nourishing foods (like sugar, etc. for energy!)
  • imbalanced hormones
  • blood sugar imbalance
  • decrease in neurotransmitters and mood
  • decreased metabolism
  • decreased natural detox, lymph flow
  • decreased mental clarity
  • decreased mobility
  • decrease in restful sleep


And just think - these ALL are a direct result of a lack of muscle building and strengthening!


You were MADE to move. You were MADE to have strong muscles. You were MADE to use your muscle for hard work. You were MADE to do hard things in order that your body and health would comprehensively (holistically!) be strengthened and function and even thrive in the way you were designed.


All aspects of our health work together and are connected. You cannot disregard the way you were DESIGNED to function (having strong muscles and therefore a strong body) and think that your health will function properly.


Literally EVERY area of your health is connected to and affected by atrophy/hypertrophy.


So let me repeat...


You MUST strengthen your muscle or else you will lose your muscle.



So, little pop quiz... you have .2 seconds to answer each question....


1. Can you do ANY movement and ensure that you are going to be strengthening your muscles?


(no, no, no!)


2. Is cardio the same as a resistance workout?


(no, no, no!)


3. What can you do to ensure you are building and strengthening your body (hypertrophy)?


(the answer is RESISTANCE workouts!! πŸ€—πŸ₯³πŸ‘πŸΌπŸ’ͺπŸΌπŸ‘‹πŸΌ There MUST be RESISTANCE to the muscle to lead to hypertrophy!)


4. Did you know that cardio-heavy workouts like HIIT or bootcamp-style workouts and even super heavy strength training can actually damage the muscle tissue TOO much leading to weaker fascia?


(don't worry, this question won't count for a grade... 😏)




So, though it may seem as though I am just biased towards resistance workouts, specifically Pilates, because I teach Pilates - the truth is - I want to encourage you to consistently strengthen your muscles because I care about you feeling GREAT and being able to function and thrive in the way God designed you to! I have seen too many people "just move" or barely move at all or do super intense workouts and it leads to many other issues and causes them to just feel terrible and not thrive in their health.


The Perfect Answer


So if you need (and you do!):

  1. Resistance exercises
  2. Not too little
  3. And not too much

...then my workouts are a PERFECT way to progress towards hypertrophy, to strengthen your body so that you don't lose muscle while still ensuring that you aren't overdoing it with straining or wearing exercises.


Here is what you will experience when your muscle IS being built up or strengthened through my workouts:

  • increase in energy because you will utilize fat as energy rather than muscle tissue
  • decrease in pain from balancing and strengthening of the fascia
  • decreased/more balanced stress response
  • decreased appetite for less nourishing foods (like sugar, etc. for energy!)
  • balanced hormones
  • blood sugar regulation
  • increased neurotransmitters and mood
  • increased metabolism
  • increased natural detox and lymph flow
  • increased mental clarity
  • increased mobility
  • increase in restful sleep


Ahhh 😌 doesn't that all sound nice? Hypertrophy and getting stronger can affect ALL areas of your health...thus affecting your life in such positive ways. πŸ‘πŸΌπŸ‘πŸΌπŸ‘πŸΌ



πŸ— πŸŽ— πŸ“Œ

You MUST strengthen your muscle or else you will lose your muscle.

πŸ“Œ πŸŽ— πŸ—


So when are you starting?!? Today?!!


Good news - I have JUST the thing to help you get stronger!


Check out my Workout Memberships here and come get stronger with me!


I know you will LOVE it and feel GREAT and THRIVE in your health with these workouts!


Your health literally depends on this - join me!



IΒ wold LOVE to have you workout with me!

Grab a free Olive Tree Workout (or 2!) here...

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