You've heard of "muscle memory," right? It's like how you can take piano lessons as a kid, not play for 20 years, and then still be able to relearn pretty quickly. Your brain might forget the songs, but the muscles in your hands and your fingers still remember how to play with a bit of practice, of course. The same thing goes for building other muscles in our bodies.
A study conducted by the University of Oslo in Norway concluded that muscles are able to "remember" their former strength, and that that memory can last indefinitely. Basically, building muscle increases your number of muscle nuclei, the parts that store information for each muscle fiber. The number of muscle nuclei does not decrease with muscle strength. So even if you stop playing piano or aren't able to exercise for a while, you'll still have the same number of muscle nuclei and your muscles will be able to remember their former strength.
The Earlier the Better
The study also concluded that your muscles' ability to increase muscle nuclei diminishes over time. It's much easier to create muscle memory in your teens, 20s, and even 30s than it is later in life. That means that the best way to ensure a healthy, fit future for yourself is to be healthy and fit right now.
People who created muscle memory earlier in life have a much easier time staying fit and/or "bouncing back" as they age. This might not seem fair to those of us who weren't on the high school track team or football stars, but it is an invitation to get healthy now. Don't think of it as a fountain of youth or an excuse to get healthy and then slack off for a while. Instead, consider it an added bonus to getting and staying fit.
The study also proves that exercising along with eating a healthy, balanced diet is the best retirement plan you can give your body. Here at BlenderBottle, we're all about healthy living now for a better, healthier future. Exercising is an investment in your healthy and fit future self.
How about our BlenderBottle-ers? How do you build muscle memory?