Light Meat Or Dark Meat?
October 22, 2011
— aerobic, agility, anaerobic, bad, balance, ball, boot, camp, chatham, classes, core, diet, exercise, Fitness, hills, holistic, intense, intensity, jump, kettlebell, Livingston, loss, madison, medicine, Millburn, mobility, network, new jersey, nj, Nutrition, pain management, personal, personal trainer, personal training, rope, short, specific, stability, strength, Summit, sweat, trainer, training, weight, Wellness, workout
Light meat or dark meat? What kind of meat do I have?
This will help explain why chickens can’t fly very far and why ducks can fly for thousands of miles.
Dark Meats Dark meats simply have more myoglobin proteins, the magic stuff that ships oxygen to the muscle cells.
Dark meats must use myoglobins as they transfer oxygen more efficiently to the muscles than glycogen. Muscles used more frequently, get to be dark. This is why non-flying poultry drumsticks are dark meat, while breast meat is white.
When dark meat is cooked it turns the myoglobins to metmyoglobins, which is brown/gray. Metmyoglobins are very high in iron (albeit there is not that much in dark meat in the first place).
White Meat White meat gets the ‘juice’ through glycogen. Glycogen is a polysaccharide of glucose, an animal starch. Animal starch is stored primarily in the liver and broken down into glucose when needed by the white muscle.
I often use this analogy to explain to my client on how aerobic and anaerobic exercise affects them directly. We are basically a composition of light meat and dark meat. Depending on the type of demand on the muscles, we either elicit an aerobic (dark meat) response or a anaerobic (light meat) response. Our dark meat is for long slow duration exercise and our white meat is our “strength” exertions. So, now that we have a simplified explanation of muscle recruitment, how do you train and why? Most people think that aerobic exercise is best for fat burning, but when they understand the physiology of humans, we can learn that aerobic exercise can actually do the opposite. It becomes more of a storage of fat training system or a stress response system. Simply put, our bodies either understand “fight or flight” or “rest and recovery”. When we do long slow duration exercise, our bodies go into efficiency mode and shut off postural muscles (hence the tight hamstrings) as well as continually producing cortisol (stress hormone). This is why we prescribe short duration, high intensity exercise for our clients that are looking to loose body fat. Nothing works better. We also know that keeping our high intesity exercise below thirty minutes, we don’t allow our anabolic hormones (Testosterone/growth hormone) to be dominated by our catabolic hormones (cortisol). 30 minutes is the boarder of when anabolic hormones begin to fall short of the escalating cortisol.
For more information contact us @
Holistic Wellness Network Personal Training
17 Watchung Avenue, Chatham, NJ 07928