Updated: May 31, 2019
Many women over look resistance training as an effective fat-burning tool, but it’s a great aid to weight loss.
When it comes to working out, many people believe the fat-burning and weight loss is all to with aerobic exercise and that resistance training is really only for muscle building. But resistance training- that’s muscle strengthening work using your body or equipment as resistance is just as important as aerobic exercise for successful fat loss. There are several reasons for this:
Muscle is your fat furnace, it’s where body fat is most effectively burned, and resistance training will increase your lean muscle tissue.
Muscle burns more calories than fat. A pound of muscle burns around 50 calories a day, while a pound of fat burns 5.
Muscle takes up less space than fat, so it helps you look slimmer and leaner.
Resistance training increases your metabolic rate. This enables you to burn more calories all day long.
Resistance training helps stop muscle loss as you age. This helps to prevent weight gain as you get older.
Years ago, people didn’t need to go to exercise classes or the gym because their lifestyles were sufficient to keep them fit and strong. They retained their muscle strength and power because they had to undertake physical tasks in the workplace and around the home. Today, labour saving devices mean that, for many of us, there is no need for our muscles to remain strong, and we start to lose muscle after the age of 30. This makes everyday tasks gradually harder to perform, slows down our metabolism and increases our risk of weight gain. So as we get older, we have to make an effort to exercise in order to prevent our muscles from shrinking and wasting.
MIDDLE AGE SPREAD
An inactive adult typically loses around half a pound of muscle per year – that’s almost a stone every decade. So, our fat burning furnace gets smaller, which means there is less muscle to burn off calories. If we don’t change our eating habits, we will store excess calories as fat and put on weight. Since body fat takes up more space than muscle, our waists get bigger and middle age spread takes over.
Muscle loss makes it much more difficult to control our weight. While aerobic exercise is a great way to improve heart and lung fitness. Resistance training is much more effective at building healthy well toned muscles.
Generally men tend to combine aerobic and resistance training during a work out. Women are more likely to do cardiovascular exercise and are more reluctant to do resistance training for fear of getting bulky muscles. However women do not have the testosterone levels necessary to build big muscles. Instead, they develop leaner and stronger muscle fibres with less fat between each fibre which results in more slender muscles greater muscle tone. Doing 30 minutes of resistance training two to three times a week is sufficient to produce results.