For many people, exercise for fat loss means doing cardio exercise. Recent research (such as that published in the Journal of Applied Physiology), however, indicates that strength training to increase muscle mass is just as effective as high intensity interval training at burning off body fat. In this article, we investigate why lifting weight is a smart move if you’re trying to lose weight.*
Muscle Burns Fat
Muscle is metabolically active tissue. That means that your muscle cells are the area of your body where your body burns stored body fat. The more muscle you have on your body, the more energy is required to maintain that muscle. Every pound of muscle burns about 30 calories per day, so, by adding just 5 pounds of muscle, you will burn off a pound of fat in a month.
The human body is a little like a car in that adding muscle mass is like putting a larger engine in your vehicle. In both cases, you’ll burn more fuel as you go about your daily activities. Of course, you want your car to be as fuel efficient as possible to save on your gas bill. But, with your body, you want the opposite – the more fuel inefficient you are, the better!
How to Gain Muscle While Losing Fat
Strength training with weights is the best way to build muscle tissue. If you’re a woman, however, you don’t have to be concerned about getting bulky. When we throw around words like toning, enhancing or shaping our bodies, we’re really talking about building muscle. Muscle creates the shape of your body, so the more muscle you have, the more shape your body will have.
Im order to develop a rounder, sexier or perkier body part, you need to build muscle. In order to do that, you must use heavy weights. Those tiny, pretty pink dumbbells just won’t cut it. In fact, women need to train the way that men do in the gym.
How to Build Your Muscle Base
To build muscle, you have to build a foundation – just like when you’re building a house. That foundation needs to be a strength training foundation. In order to do that you should begin with a strength based program that last for 3-5 weeks. After that you should move on to circuit training, complexes and combination workouts, which we’ll detail in future articles.
Here is your 3-5 week base strength program. Do the workout three times per week on alternate days. Focus on your technique and perform the reps slowly. Start your workout with a dynamic warmup.
The Foundation Workout
Goblet Squat – 2 x 6-8 reps
Barbell Bench Press – 2 x 8-10 reps
Deadlift – 2 x 8-10 reps
Dumbbell Shoulder Press – 2 x 8-10 reps
Barbell Curls – 2 x 8-10 reps
Triceps Pushdowns – 2 x 10-12 reps
Strength training needs to be part of your fat loss program. It involves building muscle – and to build muscle, you need to lift heavy weight. Build you strength training foundation with the program outlined here. Check back next week as we share the best fat burning strength programs to take it to the next level.
This website offers health, fitness and nutritional information and is designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on this information as a substitute for, nor does it replace, professional medical advice, diagnosis treatment. This website does not promise any specific results, as each individual responds differently to training. The author of this article is not a medical professional.