If you want to lose weight, there are several types of exercises you can choose from; cardio, High-Intensity Interval Training, weight lifting, and functional training. In the past, weight lifting or resistance training was not a popular exercise choice for weight loss because people mistakenly reserved it for people who wanted to “bulk up.” However, the narrative has now changed as more people understand the benefits of weight training and the part it plays in weight loss.
To lose weight, you need to have a calorie deficit, and you can achieve it in three major ways:
Lifting weights can burn calories, although it’s not the most efficient way to do so. Cardio exercises such as running, cycling, and swimming burn more calories per session than weight training. Weight lifting supports weight loss by building muscle mass. Muscles are metabolically efficient and support weight loss by burning more calories at rest. Therefore, adding resistance training and cardio to your workout regimen produces the best results.
After weight lifting, your metabolic rate increases, and you burn additional calories hours after your workout. When you lose weight, you don’t lose pure fat. You lose fat mass, glycogen stores, and muscle. Weight training helps preserve muscle mass during weight loss. This increases fat loss and keeps your metabolism from changing too much.
Weight training contributes to fat loss, although you may not see a significant change in the number on the scale. This is because fat muscle is denser than fat; thus, it takes up less space on your body for a pound. Hence, as you lose fat and gain muscle, you may lose some inches from your waistline with no change on the scale. All in all, you need to add weight lifting to your weight loss regimen for optimum results.
Apart from helping in losing weight, resistance training has the following benefits:
Muscles are less dense than fat; therefore, they take up less space in your body. Thus, as you build muscle through weight lifting, you will naturally appear leaner and smaller. Additionally, having stronger and larger muscles will make your body more defined. Although you cannot tone your muscles, building your muscles and losing fat will show your muscle definition, creating a stronger, leaner look.
The primary benefit of strength training is getting you stronger. Building strength makes daily activities like carrying groceries, climbing stairs, and playing with your kids easier. It also lowers the risk of falls and injuries because you can better support your body. Weight training is critical for bone development because it puts temporary strength on your bones, telling your body to make them stronger. This reduces your risk of osteoporosis and fractures, more so as you age.
Resistance training can reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and age-related conditions like sarcopenia, which is the gradual loss of muscle and strength due to aging. Resistance training also improves heart health and increases lung capacity, metabolism, blood flow, and muscle mass.
Lifting heavier weights and building strength helps you build your self-esteem. The strength you develop will not only show in your body but also in your attitude. Strength always has a funny way of seeping into every area in your life, inside the gym and outside. By challenging yourself to push your limits, you grow your confidence.
Before picking any weights, it’s advisable first to understand what your body’s mobility and stability look like—trying holding a plank, hanging on a bar, or sitting in a squat. If you cannot put your body in these places, you don’t want to add load to those exercises. Keep working at your tough-for-you exercises with your body weight until you feel more in control.
Before starting your weightlifting routine, you want to be able to conquer these four functional moves; push, squat, deadlift, and horizontal or overhead row. Mastering functional exercises will prevent injuries in the future. If you are unsure where to start, you work with an online coach or a physical one to get feedback and guidance.
You can start with three sets of dumbbells, a light, medium, and heavy pair. Make these sets between 5 to 10 pounds apart. You should lift the lightest one with little to no effort, while the heavy ones should be tougher. Your body weight can also be enough. Start where you feel most comfortable.
Proteins contain amino acids which help build up muscles. They also signal the body to build lean mass and lose body fat. This helps you get the most out of weightlifting.
When lifting weights, pay close attention to how you are feeling. There is a difference between pain and discomfort. If something is painful, then back off. When something’s uncomfortable, ask yourself if it’s because you haven’t done it or if it’s hard. Remember to take breaks.
Resistance training is essential for your weight loss regimen. It provides long-term weight loss by increasing after-burn exercise. Weight training also helps you become stronger, improves your mood, and gives you the confidence to conquer everyday challenges.
Are you looking to enroll in a resistance training program? Next Level Fitness Studio in Nashville should be your go-to gym. We are a team of certified trainers who help people be the best version of themselves by working on their fitness. We help people with wholesome training on both diet and exercise. Our resistance training program helps you build strength and lose weight with the proper diet. Book an appointment with us now and become the best version of yourself!