Do you train hard for a whole week, you gain good muscle volume in your legs and buttocks, but when it comes to facing a weekend of party and dance, your ass and legs get really thinner? ... or do you feel like if all the hard work done at the gym would have been thrown away in a single night?
Yes, it usually happens. Both men and women usually suffer with this kind of problem, usually during a night of dancing and worse: during the other day ... they often notice that their legs and buttocks have reduced their volume somewhat (either at a fat or muscular level, but mainly muscle level). In men sometimes they also notice "shrinking" or "thinning" also in arms, chest and shoulders.
But, well, here I will focus on explaining why your legs and also your buttocks tend to get thinner a few hours after you get home after a good few hours of dancing, and also in the next day. And how could you reduce this situation.
For example: how you could avoid that by the fact of dancing, your legs and buttocks get thinner ... I am going to mention what you can do to avoid losing mainly muscle volume in these areas.
Why the legs and buttocks become thin after a good few hours of dancing
The worst is usually the case when these hours of dancing are performed in the evenings and sometimes even into the night (sometimes also at the beginning of the next day). So, the first factor that would explain this little un-desired phenomenon (muscular atrophy in your legs and butt) is the fact of "staying up late", or sometimes "extremely late" ... your body is "killed" by staying up too late ...
... of course this factor induces worse results according to the genetic potential of each person. You also have to take into account the other habits of life, because if a person has fed very well, knows how to hydrate before during and after an exercise session (if we see dancing also as a demanding physical exercise) ...
... then perhaps this factor of "staying up late" does not affect so much to the skeletal musculature of this type of people who are arranged to enjoy a good night of party involving situations where they have to move in a harmonious way (or at least in a way according to the rhythm of each song).
And with all mentioned so far, I am going to mention now the other factor that is almost obvious, and it comes to be the "Energy or Caloric Expenditure" which is generated during the time of dancing. Your body does require good amounts of energy while you dance ... and of course, keep in mind that all this energy will is not exclusive from fat.
Keep in mind that even if your body's ability to consume and use oxygen is very good, there will always be an expenditure of glycogen which can serve as an energy substrate both by aerobic (requiring oxygen) and anaerobic way (which do not require oxygen). Some amino acids can also be oxidized to fulfill energetic functions.
In addition, the harder the dance become and the longer the song is, the more your pulsations per minute will increase and this will lead to a greater energy expenditure of both aerobic and anaerobic energy substrates.
Your brain and nervous system also consume many Calories while you dance
Mostly these Calories come from the glycogen that is stored in your liver. Have you noticed that when you think hard to solve a problem, when you study, when you read, etc ... tend to feel hungry constantly? Well, if so, I think you already know the reason why this happens.
The more complex the cognitive level of an activity, the greater energy expenditure will be lead by your brain and nervous system and in this case, because of dancing ... and therefore energy expenditure at muscle level will also be high.
You will spend energy madly. Even more so when the steps of every song are very complex ... even more when you strive to propose new dance steps ... even more when you are the kind of person who have a hard time following and maintaining a good rhythm with their bodies. .. and the energy expenditure will be even greater when the whole dancing night go further for hours and hours.
But this is not all the thing ... because the most really harmful thing to your body, which most often influences the fact that your legs and butt get thinner during a night of dancing / party and the days after, is the aforementioned "staying up late", but also the fact of "not rehydrating well" during this time of party / dance, and spending a lot of time without feeding.
Do you eat food during this time of partying and dancing?
Usually people who go out to dance usually do it at night and stay awake until dawn. The other factor is that many people do not have the habit of ingesting food during those many hours of dancing in a club or "disco".
So, it's a matter of simple math: you dance, you spend a lot of energy and at the same time you do not provide your body with new energy to continue dancing and prevent your butt, legs and other parts of your body from getting thinner at muscle level ... Because keep in mind that I mentioned to you that the energy during the dancing time and during other types of activities does not come exclusively from your body fat.
Keep in mind also that the more hours you spend dancing, the more glycogen you will spend, and when these glycogen levels go down considerably, this in itself reduces volume to your muscles since glycogen is also stored in your skeletal muscle tissue .
The problem is that when muscular glycogen is in low levels, then your body will have to start using more muscle proteins which will degrade to amino acids for then drive to an "expensive" conversion to another amino acids (a lot of water, vitamins and minerals are spent in this process) and then for its consequent conversion to glucose (some amino acids get oxidized directly), and this way allow you to continue dancing without dying (exaggerating a little) .... and of course, this high protein and glycogen expenditure also depletes and shrink your muscles.
Do you allow a correct hydration in your body during this time of partying and dancing?
A correct hydration it is not just about drinking water, since during the dance you are not only losing water through sweat but also electrolyte minerals. You lose mainly in great proportions sodium, a very important mineral that allows your body to perform good muscular contractions (and remember: while you are dancing your muscles are in constant contraction / elongation / relaxation).
Ideally, you should drink a hypotonic or isotonic drink (a hypertonic drink may contain too much sugar). A Gatorade while dancing is a good idea to prevent a high degree of water-mineral imbalance which could contribute negatively to the thinning of your legs, butt and other parts of your body.
How to avoid your legs and butt get thinner while you dance?
Well, it really would be more about lessening this situation than about avoiding it, because it is very difficult to prevent your muscles from losing some volume during your night of party and / or hours later ... this varies according to the hours of dance and also how late you go to sleep, how well you feed, how well you rehydrate and of course also depends a lot on your genetic potential.
So in itself the first recommendation is to avoid spending too much time staying awake at night. The earlier you go to bed, the less "damage" will be at the muscle level. Well, it is not a real damage, then let´s just say is some kind of thinning or temporary muscular atrophy in the muscles of your legs and butt (ass).
The other recommendation is to ingest a drink containing both glucose and electrolyte minerals. You can drink it while you sit down to rest. Or in fact if you notice that you spend a lot of time dancing and you only sit for a short time, it is not a bad idea to go dancing with a bottle in your hand and drink small sips of this drink from time to time.
The last recommendation would be to ingest food while you spend a lot of hours in this club or "disco". I am not saying you have to order for a pizza (although if you can do it would be great), but at least you should carry something easy to eat as a bag of noughts with raisins, for example. It can also be a piece of chocolate (hopefully not with lot of sugar) too.
If you can leave the disco or club for a moment, feed yourself well and then continue your holiday hours. Although the ideal is that you go out, eat and then go to sleep. But hey, I know that people often workout hard to show off a good body during these party nights ... although I do not really support this to much ... but hey, everyone will have their reasons to train hard and look attractive.