• Daniel K, MSpCoach

Why You Shouldn’t Avoid Strength Training While Losing Weight

One month into the new year and if you’re like the vast majority of people who set health and fitness goals, one of them probably had something to do with your weight (for most people that would be losing some). If you weren’t already aware, lifting weights can go a long way to helping you reach your desired weight loss goal, along with many other added benefits. Read on to find out how.

There is a huge misconception that you shouldn’t lift weights when going through a weight loss phase. Not only is it believed to stunt your results, but it’s actually thought to be counterproductive.

This couldn’t be further from the truth. Let’s get informed:

Strength training (including weight lifting, body-weight training & any other type of resistance training) can be greatly beneficial for fat loss. Why? Because it builds up lean muscle, increases the Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR), and increases the speed of your metabolism.

It is agreed that cardiovascular exercise is probably a better candidate for general caloric expenditure during the workout - the keyword here being ‘during’. Strength training is universally more effective at burning total calories and fat overall.

Let me explain… By increasing muscle mass, you increase the BMR. In its simplest terms, a higher BMR equates to more calories being burned in the space of 24-48 hours.

Why is this beneficial for weight loss?

Through building lean muscle and increasing your BMR, you inevitably burn more calories at rest throughout the day AND increase your overall caloric deficit - a necessity for weight loss. This is what is known as Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC).

Still not fully understanding?

During an aerobic, cardiovascular workout, it’s widely accepted that more calories are burned than during a typical strength training workout of the same duration. The distinction? While you may certainly be losing weight, you’re also losing a proportionate amount of muscle at the same time. Additionally, it can also slow down your metabolism rather than speed it up. This is a detriment if you’re trying to lose weight.

Here’s the answer: Increase the intensity and begin to implement a consistent strength training regimen consisting of weight-bearing exercises in conjunction with aerobic activity. This is the optimal weight loss plan. Oh, and don’t forget to hone in on your diet as well!

If you have further questions on this, feel free to contact me and I’ll do my best to give you information more tailored to your needs.


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