Let’s start with this very common misconception. When most people think of weight loss, they think of people in sweatpants running outside, huffing and puffing.
There are two problems with this line of thinking: first, almost no one enjoys doing that especially not on a daily basis, and second, there’s a much better way to burn fat and burn it faster.
Most forms of cardio training only burn calories while you’re actually exercising. But what if you could increase the number of calories you burn even while sitting still? Wouldn’t that benefit you a lot more since you don’t spend the majority of the day exercising, it would make a lot more sense to increase your overall metabolic rate, wouldn’t it?
Well, you actually can: by growing your muscles. It used to be believed that just one pound of muscle would burn 50 calories per day, but over the years research has shown that new muscle mass is not quite as metabolically active as we used to think. In fact other organs in your body like your heart, your liver, and your digestive system use far more calories per pound than muscle mass. But performing strength training and focusing on increasing muscle mass can still drastically increase your metabolism. Sure you’re not burning 50 calories per day from each pound of muscle, but you’re still burning 3 times the calories that you would burn if it was pounds of fat instead. You also continue burning fat after the workout is over. On top of that research has shown that by starting a strength training program you can increase your metabolism by almost 8 percent, because not only do you get a boost from adding on new muscle, but all your muscle tissue that you already had on your body that you’re now putting stress on increases its daily energy demands. The point is that by engaging in a resistance training program your body does, in fact, need a lot more energy to maintain muscle strength and size.
Now if we put the unmatched benefits that weight training will have on your metabolism aside, we still have the incredible benefits that weight training can provide for your hormones. Fat burning and muscle building hormones like testosterone, hunger, and appetite suppressing hormones like leptin and ghrelin, and insulin sensitivity are just some of the positive effects that weight training will have on your body. Many people ruin their metabolisms and create hormonal imbalances with years of poor choices with their diet and exercise habits. And consistent weight training is the best way to stop and reverse these problems.
Don’t get me wrong, cardio is great to help you burn some extra calories. But if you want the best aesthetic results, and you have to choose…lifting weights is more important than cardio.
Even though any kind of weight training is better than not doing it, you might be thinking what exercises should you do to burn the most fat? Well, research has shown that total body exercises and exercises that involve larger numbers of larger muscle groups like squats and deadlifts…Those kinds of exercises with heavy loads are the best not only for burning fat, but they’re also great for building muscle mass and increasing your testosterone levels.
So, lift weights, build some muscle and it won’t be long before you see that you’re losing fat faster while also looking leaner and stronger. Cardio you can use to help burn extra calories, but make sure you’re picking the best type of cardio. This leads us to our next myth
Check out my client Antonio’s transformation where he lost a whole bunch of fat.