On a genetic level, many elite athletes tend to share certain almost superhuman genes. But even if you aren’t an Olympian, you can nudge your athletic genes in the right direction—if you know how to do it.
We’re going to be talking about exercising for your genes here, diving into what genes are linked to greater athletic performance and how you can get them working for you.
So here’s the thing: your genetics play a more prominent role in determining your athletic prowess than you may realize. According to Dan Reardon, M.B.Ch.B. Co-founder of FitnessGenes and personal trainer: “When it comes to athletic and physical performance, genetics can be attributed to about 50-60% of the difference between your skills and someone else’s. The other 40-50% comes down to environmental factors like training, diet, and lifestyle habits (i.e. sleep).”
So if that’s the case, how do you come by this information? Sadly, a simple blood work panel from your doc won’t cut it; you’ll need to find a company that specializes in nutritional genetics testing—this means you’ll be paying out of pocket for it (around $300).
Which begs the question: is it worth getting the test?
It’s our goal to help you answer that by the end of this blog. Keep reading.
Here are some of the most common genes associated with athletic performance, along with the fixes to improve their function without having to turn to genetic doping.
For elite athletes, on the other hand, it’s 70-80mL/kg/min. The more oxygen you take in, the greater your energy output; this means you’ll be better equipped to handle intense cardio, HIIT and other rigorous exercise.
It’s no joke, there is a gene that makes some people more susceptible to obesity. In a 2008 Scottish study of school-aged children, it revealed the heaviest set kids had active FTO genes.
Further, using the same children they conducted a metabolic test (tracked their diet) and uncovered that an active FTO gene doesn’t mean a slow metabolism, it actually means they just ate more.
This nifty little gene affects how you digest carbs and fats and how well your body responds to exercise: both air intake (VO2max) and its response to adrenaline.
In athletes, this gene is linked to greater VO2max and improved endurance; it’s the opposite in sedentary folks. Sadly those who scored lower in VO2max, also had greater carb sensitivity meaning they were at higher risk for obesity.
This gene is a literal lifegiver. It’s found all across your brain and serves a dual purpose to maintain and grow new brain cells—yeah, this bad boy is important. Low-BDNF is linked to brain degenerative disease like dementia and Alzehmers as well mood disorders like anxiety and depression.
However, new studies suggest if you stimulate the BDNF gene in a petri dish, out pops more brain cells. By waking up this gene you’ll boost your serotonin (cue happiness), combat mood disorders/brain degradation, improve your memory and help you form new skills.
If you haven’t already signed up forBodyRock+, join today and gain access to thousands of different workout videos to keep your body guessing!
The IGF-1 gene is responsible for childhood growth and alongside MSTN triggers muscle growth in adults. In a recent study, lab rats were injected with IGF-1 and they gained 30% more muscle!
ACTN3 is found only in fast-twitch fibers, these fibers are responsible for powerful bursts of speed, deadlifts or other explosive movements.
Since you’re reading this, we know you put a premium on your fitness level. But whether or not you want to front the money to get a blood test to check out your athletic genes depends on your curiosity and whether or not you’re happy with your current gains from your exercise routine.
Even without these tests, if you’re born with average genes, you can still jumpstart your underachieving genes to improve your overall fitness level with the tips shared here. So what if you weren't born a Schwarzenegger: that doesn’t mean you can’t have a killer physique. If you’re ready to start exercising for your genes, there’s no time like the present to get started!
Head over to BodyRock+ and browse all our workout series. The first day of almost all series is absolutely free!
Comments will be approved before showing up.
Your skin after a workout has unique needs. Here’s what you need to include in your post-workout skincare routine for vibrant, beautiful skin.
We offer a 30-day return policy, as long as: it is not more than 30 days past the date of delivery; and your item is in its original condition and packaging with the original order number. Refunds will be issued when the equipment is received back to the BodyRock warehouse, minus the original cost of shipping, and the customer is responsible for the costs of return shipping. To request a refund on physical product purchases, please contact us.
We cannot issue refunds on digital goods such as e-books or videos, as these are non-tangible goods that are irrevocable once the order is placed.
All of the BodyRock clothing is made to order and so is final sale. If you have any questions about sizing prior to placing your order, please contact us.