Does strength training help you lose weight?
If you’re trying to lose weight, it can be all too easy to focus on cardio work – but pounding the treadmill isn’t the only answer in the pursuit of dropping a trouser size or two.
Strength training is a hugely effective way of slimming down. In fact, some experts suggest that this type of work-out – which builds muscle – can burn up to three times more calories. It is often an overlooked part of a health and fitness regime, and as well as burning fat, strength training has a whole range of health benefits – including strengthening bones, keeping your heart pumping healthily, and improving metabolism.
The afterburn effect
During cardiovascular exercise, your body stops burning fat shortly after the work out. However, a strength training session, such as using weights, elevates your metabolism and continues to burn fat up to 48 hours after your work out. An increase in oxygen consumption helps break down fat stores in the body – this is known as the ‘afterburn effect’.
Strength training is worth the persistence. Your weight may not change significantly immediately, but over time the training can change your body shape and tone. Strength training helps to build lean muscle mass and prevents muscle loss – and as part of a varied work out, provides the perfect way to find a healthy balance of fat and muscle.
Shedding fat, building muscle
Building more lean muscle means your body will burn more calories at rest and increase your everyday base metabolic rate. Weight training is more effective than cardio at building muscle, and muscle burns more calories at rest than some other tissues, including fat. Because of this, it is commonly said that building muscle is the key to increasing your resting metabolism (how many calories you burn at rest).
The more muscle you have, the more calories you burn throughout the day. So strength training – whether that’s pumping iron or chest presses – is a proven way to shed fat and build muscle.
A balanced work-out is the best plan
The best weight-loss plan will consist of a good mix of cardio and strength training, and fitting the strength training in three or four days a week is advisable. Just make sure you give yourself a day between sessions for your muscles to recover and grow!
Are you looking to start strength training as part of your goal to lose weight? Check out our product page at Repel Bullies for lifting gear and accessories.