Training Paradise Blog

Scared of being bulky with weight lifting?


To all men and women reading these lines, believe us, gaining 5 kg of muscles is what could happen at best! It would mainly help you to burn more calories and help to sculpt your body very harmoniously. You will NEVER look like these women/men bodybuilder that you could see on Instagram or in body-buildings’ TV show.

You will never get bulky like on the picture! NEVER!

Even if you devote your whole life to weight training, several hours a day, with a very strict diet, you will never get the body of this woman in the picture…

So, the question is: why a woman could not get this body by training hard? Is there a limit? How do they do to get so muscular?

Each body has its own limits that are determined by our genetic heritage. And certainly, although there may be large differences between people, it will be impossible for a woman (or a man for that matter) to expect such a level of detail and muscle mass in a natural way. You will never be able to bulk indefinitely until you explode! The woman on the picture has used steroids and growth hormones to overcome these natural limits.

But yet, I see that I quickly gain muscle when I do weight training!

We all have experienced this phenomenon, when we start weigh training, session after session, the muscles get bigger. It’s perfect for the guys but for the woman, to see legs getting bigger faster than the glutes is generally a disaster! And that’s the reason why the women usually stop to train. If they could continue to train, they would quickly notice that their muscles won’t grow anymore.

When we eat, we store glycogen (carbs) into the muscles. During the training, the muscles will use this glycogen to move. So, when you do a weight training session you are actually sending a signal to your muscles asking them to increase the size of the glycogen storage to support the next training session. It’s as simple as that, you ask your muscle to store more sugar in order to be more efficient during your next session, you increase their capacity, you start bulking… a little!

Do you believe that this phenomenon is reproduced infinitely? Of course not, otherwise the muscle cells would grow like an inflatable balloon that we fill with air until it bursts!

We can note that muscles are composed with glycogen storage and protein tissues. If the glycogen storage can increase quickly when we start weight training, the protein growth will take a long time to increase.

In short, if you had persevered in weight training, you would quickly understand that this “fast” physiological adaptation to effort stops quickly after a few weeks of workout…

How to tone your muscles and look fit?

We have a great news to announce: Your muscles are already toned! Yes, wanting more toned muscles is like wanting more liquid water.

But then, how to give the muscles a firm appearance? The answer is somewhere else…

Look at the picture of Laurent below (one of the authors of The Cross Method). In the picture A, we can see that he looks like a fit man but a little bit chubby and even if he looks muscular, we cannot say that he has toned muscles.


And now, look at the picture B. It’s still Laurent… after a diet.

No, he did not do anything else than a diet. He kept the same frequency and intensity workout than before the diet.   The only difference between the two pictures: less fat!


To the statement “I do not want to do weight training because I do not want to bulk, I just want to tone my muscles,” we answer that it is a mistake. The muscles do not grow indefinitely; there is a natural genetic limit. In addition, the first signs of a muscle mass gain are in fact a simple retention of glycogen (sugar stored in the muscles) and not a spectacular increase in muscle cells. To see defined muscles (toned and firm), we just need to remove the fat on top of them… But this is another story.