Hitting the gym is important but what is more important is how hard you push yourself while you are there. A good indication of this is called the pump. The pump refers to the increased circulation of blood in the muscles that you are working out. Since these muscles need more oxygen and nutrients in order to contract there needs to be more blood to give it to them. This makes the veins in your arm fuller and able to carry more blood through the desired area. The harder you work, the more oxygen and nutrients the muscles need, the more blood flowing through that area, the bigger the pump.
Now don't be worried if you do not feel the pump as strongly in certain areas of the body as others. Arms carry much less body fat so the veins will be much more noticeable when there is a pump in that area. For chest and back the pump is more of a feeling than anything. You can tell that those areas are tightening up and it may take a few sets of working out before the blood is fully flowing. Then once the pump is there it will be easier to work out. This is why the pros recommend a few warm up sets before lifting heavy. Aim for the pump and work harder and harder to get it. Your body will respond to it and the muscles will work harder.
Is the pump necessary for muscle growth?
The pump is necessary for muscle growth because it indicates how much the muscle fibers are tearing. Muscle grows by tearing apart its fibers when working out and then later it rebuilds these fibers except they are stronger and bigger when they are rebuilt. If there is more blood flowing to these areas then it will be easier to tear the muscle fibers and rebuild them later. In order to maximize these results it is important to get enough rest and enough calories in order to repair the muscles fully. Trust in the pump and work your body out hard enough to feel it, it will be worth it in the end.
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