Pushing Blood from your Abs into workout muscles
01-28-2009 09:01 PM
Pushing Blood from your Abs into workout muscles
I've been trying something recently, and I feel like its maybe increasing my vascularity/definition/size.
I tighten my abs really hard on the last few reps on a exercise and force a blood rush into my head/upperbody until my veins pop out everywhere.
EX. On bicep/back days, Ill do incline DB curls for 10 reps, last 2 reps that are in a slower/tired motions, Ill hold my breath and squeeze blood up into my upper body making my veins pop out on both arms/chest/traps and turning my face purple/eyes.
It feels like its doing something...It cetainly is uncomfortable as you feel like your about to pass out afterwards.
Is there any benefit to doing this?
01-28-2009 09:17 PM
valsalva manuver , be very careful you can pass out.
01-28-2009 10:25 PM
well is there any benefit to bodybuilding by doing this, other than posing to show vascularity?
I remember back in middle school, I used to be bored in class and I would cut the circulation of to my right forearm at my elbow and squeeze my fist to pump out my veins....I only did this on my right forearm and I used to do it all the time for fun when I was bored.
Now looking at my arms, my left forearm is actually slightly more musclar because I'm left handed, and slightly stronger BUT, my right forearm has tons of veinage...like rediculous vascularity compared to the other.
This could just be genetics, but I think theres something to this blood forcing...I feel like it might just shape the muscles and expand the veins?
01-28-2009 10:52 PM
Originally Posted by monsterbox
i dont think cutting circulation from any part of your body is good. You can pop a vein like that, be careful.
01-28-2009 11:18 PM
Not to mention pass-out and possibly hurt yourself
Originally Posted by p00ndawg
Do you think its worth it?
01-28-2009 11:20 PM
vascularity is a factor of genetics + bf%
01-28-2009 11:31 PM
I swear there has to be something to this at least...
When I get home after a workout, I flex my pumped just-trained muscles as hard as possible in the mirror and using the valsalva method, I try to channel blood to those muscle individually. For example, Ill flex my chest and force the blood into my pec until the veins come up and pop out....these veins don't show even when working out, they ONLY show during Valsalva method. Then Ill switch to one of my biceps, Ill flex it as hard as possible and force the blood into it using the valsalva, then once its engorged and red, while holding the pressure, Ill cut the circulation slightly at my shoulder to make the vein raise to the surface.
Then.....it seems that over time, even if I don't drop bf%, these veins that once only showed during valsalva method begin to enlarge and show up on their own.
I don't know if this is good or bad, but I've been doing it this past year along, and I've made the most insane gains of my life this year. This is one of my staple things to do. I've also built up a resistance to passing out...I can hold the pressure longer without the adverse feelings.
I also believe that this can enlarge your muscles without the equivalence of strength. I feel like I can LITERALLY form my muscles into a shape I want by doing this...I constantly do it on my chest and my chest it absolutely my most perfected muscles. I also only focused on my LEFT bicep, and indeed, my left bicep while just as strong as my right, has a developed vein and better peak and is 1/2 inch larger.
I believe using this method can actually expand your muscles...I believe this is why my size exceeds my strength in comparison to many.
01-29-2009 08:45 AM
I have a couple of books on BB and both say you should never hold your breath while lifting. It is supposed to be bad on your heart and brain due to the increased pressure.
01-29-2009 08:48 AM
01-29-2009 09:26 AM
The amount of repair/recovery is a function of many variables. One important one is how much damage your caused during your workout. Another obviously important variable is nutrition. Then test levels, GH/IGF-1 levels (partly a function of sleep), frequency of lifting, etc, etc.
There is no accurate cut 'N dry answer.
01-29-2009 10:31 AM
sounds kinda crazy to be 'squeezing off muscles'. I did the forearm thing when i was like 13, it doesnt sound healthy to me.
01-29-2009 11:25 AM
The heart pumps blood via a mechanical pumping action. So you've got the heart pumping blood through your arteries, then into your arterioles, which divide into even smaller vessels called capillaries. So up until the capillaries, you've got the heart pumping the blood with some force. After the blood goes through your capillaries, delivering oxygen, nutrients, and picking up wastes, they collect into blood vessels called venules, and then those collect into your larger veins. Now while the heart is forcefully pumping blood into the first set of blood vessels (arteries to arterioles to capillaries), there is no equal force that takes the blood back to your heart through your veins; there are other mechanisms that do this: pressure created in your thoracic cavity from breathing, contractions of muscles themselves that push and squeeze the blood back to the heart, and gravity. This is why venules and veins have these little flaps that prevent blood back flow and arteries don't. Now in the case of tensing the abs as hard as you can, you're basically increasing the pressure in your thoracic cavity, forcing more blood into an area and allowing it to accumulate. This is why your veins are popping out. It's essentially the same thing as when you see kids hold their breath really hard and make your face blush; you're trapping the blood by an increase in pressure. You're going to make your veins bulge because you're forcing more blood into those veins, but not letting it go anywhere. As soon as you stop the cause of the increased pressure (abs tensing, ect..) the blood is going to be allowed to continue back to the heart via those mechanisms I mentioned earlier. I don't see any long or short term benefit to doing this, especially when you include the risk of straining something (namely the diaphragm).
There's the anatomy lesson for the day!
Now one thing I do like to do after a set is to flex and pose the muscles in the mirror (the posing is essentially a means for different ways of flexing the muscle). This pumps more blood into the muscles so I'm more pumped and ready for the next set. I usually flex everything after a set except for abs, when I do vacuums instead. Plenty-o-bodybuilders practice this. Remember those mechanisms that draw the blood back into the heart? Well, when you're lifting hard and heavy, you're pumping a lot of blood into the muscles you're working and there is no equal force to draw it out, other than what I mentioned and time. This may have been what the OG poster was talking about and I advocate this fo sho. But you do not want to totally cut off circulation completely at any point. Circulation is good pie.
Also, if you're going to be doing this or something similar, remember to stretch well after your workouts. Muscle fibers have a tendency to shorten after contraction, so it's important to stretch them out again.
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