Countless individuals want to lose weight and keep their bodies lean. They want to feel good about the way they look! However, many individuals believe that lifting weights will only add bulk to their bodies. Women, in particular, believe that lifting weights and other forms of strength training will make them look too masculine. This is precisely why many individuals only engage in cardio exercise or turn to weight loss pills to lose weight and keep it off.
However, strength training does not mean that individuals are going to bulk up. If done correctly, strength training is incredibly powerful for fast weight loss. Individuals need to engage in functional weight training to lose weight fast! Of course, the best strength training is what individuals are going to maintain.
The Science Behind Strength Training
Strength training helps men and women lose weight in their pursuit of becoming a fitness guru. The more muscle you have, the more fat you burn. This is because research indicates that the body expends energy, known as calories, to maintain muscle. Maintaining muscle requires more energy than maintaining fat! Thus, the more muscle density you have, the more energy your body needs to support it. Studies indicate that individuals who engage in strength training build more muscle mass than those who do not. Additionally, they can increase their metabolism significantly when they add to their muscle mass.
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The Science Behind Strength Training Continued
Adding strength training to any fitness routine helps reduce the gap between energy intake and expenditure. This means that the more muscle mass an individual builds, the higher their demand for energy is, since the muscle will need to be maintained at all times. This includes during physical exercise as well as when individuals are at rest!
In other words, building more muscle means that individuals will increase their resting metabolism. This makes losing excess weight and keeping it off significantly easier in the long run. Of course, individuals may gain weight in the short term, since muscle weighs more than fat. However, when they keep at strength training, they will become leaner and will end up losing weight once they lose fat from their bodies.
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Using Strength Training To Lose Weight
Individuals need to create and maintain a balanced exercise routine if they want to lose weight! This means including both cardio workouts as well as strength training. They need to burn fat and trim their muscles! Cardio exercise helps individuals start losing weight, but to make more progress and keep this weight off, individuals need to include strength training.
Many individuals choose to do cardio exercises on one day but do strength training the next day. Alternating is an effective strategy! However, including both strength training and cardio on the same day can be even better. If individuals choose to do this, they must do strength training before cardio. Performing cardio exercise before strength training depletes energy from the body. It sets individuals up for an injury! Flipping the two lessens this risk and increases the benefits of their workout!
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Frequency Of Strength Training
Many experts claim that individuals should engage in strength training approximately three to four days a week, leaving days free in between. This, they say, is very important, especially if they are doing a routine that involves their whole body. It gives the body the time it needs to recover and rebuild the muscles! Of course, exercising one muscle group on one day and another group the next day is also acceptable! When starting a new routine, some individuals find that they need a more prolonged period to recover. Starting slowly is ideal! Regardless of what individuals choose to do, however, they need to warm up and cool down. Warming up their muscles and cooling them down lessens the risk of injury and lets them exercise for longer.
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Why Strength Training Is Better Than Cardio Alone
Cardio exercise does help individuals burn calories and fat! It is a necessary part of fitness. However, it is also clear that strength training brings additional benefits. Cardio is useful for burning calories in the moment. However, strength training keeps an individual's metabolism elevated long after they finish exercising. This increases the amount of calories they burn for much longer. This effect means that individuals who include a strength training routine are going to lose more weight than individuals who only do cardio exercise. They will also lose weight faster!
Experts indicate a well-planned strength program can elevate an individual's metabolism for up to thirty-eight hours after a workout. After cardio exercise, however, the body stops burning calories. Individuals may burn fewer calories during a one hour strength training routine than running for an hour. However, that workout creates an elevated caloric burn that lasts between twenty-four to forty-eight hours after the workout.
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The Benefits Of Both Forms
Strength training provides more health benefits than just losing fat. It also improves an individual's bone density, balance, mood, and coordination. Individuals who engage in regular strength training also have stronger tendons and ligaments. This lessens the chances of an injury! Strength training also reduces the risk of heart disease, obesity, depression, anxiety, and diabetes. Including cardio as well provides benefits such as increased circulation and the production of good hormones, such as dopamine. Also, like strength training, cardio helps with bone density and lessens the risk of health issues, including diabetes. It also helps individuals manage their blood pressure!
Of course, combining the two exercises is the best for any individual for many reasons already discussed. The combination of both also prevents individuals from getting bored with their physical fitness. This helps them maintain routines for much longer!
Continue reading to learn about examples of strength training next.
Exercise Routine Examples
Individuals can perform many strength training and cardio routines regardless of their fitness level! One example of a balanced plan for a beginner is alternating between strength training and cardio each day. For instance, individuals can do strength training exercises focusing on particular body parts on certain days. Mondays can be for the upper body, Wednesday for core training, and Friday for the lower body. Individuals can then incorporate cardio exercises on Tuesdays and Thursdays. They may also be able to include some cardio on the same days as their strength training in the future! The weekend can be used for rest or participating in another fun, healthy activity. Yoga is a great strength training routine that does not require too much from the body!
Strength training exercises for the lower body include squats, split lunges, calf raises, and donkey kickbacks or fire hydrants with resistance bands. Examples of strength training for the upper body are biceps curls, tricep dips, and arm raises! Core strength exercises include mountain climbers, weighted crunches, plank side-crunches, spider crawls, and a plank with weights. Individuals must choose the right weights for all of these exercises. The amount of weight will vary based on their strength, and it will take time to increase this weight! Individuals must not overexert themselves.