Athletic performance is based on genetics — and the time and dedication you put in to practicing your sport! Research shows that at the elite level, genetic variants that impact muscle composition make a difference.
PPARδ is a key player in how and when your muscles burn fat for fuel. Genetic variants in the PPARD gene impact how well your muscles utilize fatty acids. These variants also impact how much of a fat-burning benefit you get from exercise.
The ACTN3 gene codes for actinin alpha-3, a protein found in fast twitch muscles. Some people don't produce this protein, which changes the composition of their muscles. Elite athletes may be limited by this genetic change.
A new study in the journal Behavioral Brain Research paints a fascinating picture of why some people are more motivated to exercise. The study looked at the dopaminergic system to see how people’s genetic variants could alter the ‘reinforcing value’ of exercise.