Posted: 1/25/2009 6:39:45 PM EST
Is it possible to alter the body's ultimate physiology by weight training for maximum strength and size during the developing years, or does DNA pre-determine?
The answer may seem obvious, but I'm throwing this out there for discussion.
I started weight training at age twelve and got hooked. I trained pretty intensely for about ten years. I turned out bigger than my dad and grandfather by about 30lbs.
Could I have had an influence through my weight training? FWIW I'm not currently lifting.
It would take generations to do that. It's an adaptive feature. i.e. why some cultures seem to have certain characteristics. Pac Islanders such as Tongans seem to be naturally thick and muscular whereas some tribes in Africa are tall and lean. There are variations amongst them but something in the past has caused their genetic makeup to be that way.
I'm not a scientist and this is off the top of my head. Maybe there is a geneticist on here that can give us some factual notoffthetopofhishead info.
It is possible that weight training during your puberty helped your growth as weight training induces release of growth hormone. Who knows? You could have ended up bigger than them without lifting. We've all known families where one of the children is different than their whole siblings. My GF is 5'7, her mom 5'6, and her dad is 6'. Her brother who is almost 6'7.
I wrote the first two paragraphs because I thought you were asking about an effect such as this on your offspring. I'm tired, it's late and I apparently didn't comprehend at first what you were asking.
No physiologist here, but I tend to think 'yes'.
The body, especially when young, tends to adapt to what it is repeatedly called to do, and configures itself to fulfill those requirements –– within the limits of genetic potential.
We are not at all astounded to see short parents who immigrated from a third-world country produce children much taller than them. The genetic potential was always there, but the nutrition was not. Kids eat well, grow taller than parents.
With musculature, we know that we are pretty much born with a given propensity to fast-twitch or slow twitch dominance, which we are not going to change very much.
We probably have a genetically (and hormonally) predetermined 'upper limit' on muscle cell replication/ production.
But you probably have accomplished giving yourself a higher percentile of 'potential' early on.
Your dna sets the limits.
You merely forced them to express to a higher potential than did your father or grandfather.