Kramer, Volek et al. Influence of exercise training on physiological and performance changes with weight loss in men. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc., Vol. 31, No. 9, pp. 1320-1329, 1999.Overweight subjects were assigned to three groups: diet-only, diet plus aerobics, diet plus aerobics plus weights.The diet group lost 14.6 pounds of fat in 12 weeks. The aerobic group lost only one more pound (15.6 pounds) than the diet group (training was three times a week starting at 30 minutes and progressing to 50 minutes over the 12 weeks).The weight training group lost 21.1 pounds of fat (44% and 35% more than diet and aerobic only groups respectively). Basically, the addition of aerobic training didn’t result a significant fat loss over dieting alone. Thirty-six sessions of up to 50 minutes is a lot of work for one additional pound of fat loss. However, the addition of resistance training greatly accelerated fat loss results.
Gaining muscle is essential for fat loss, and to keep the fat off. Muscles are metabolically active at all times, which means they will burn calories even when you’re not moving. At rest fat doesn’t do anything. Now I will say muscle weighs more than fat so during a resistance training program there MAY be some initial gain in weight (rarely happens) but it will shed and the fat will be burnt off allowing you to lose all the fatty tissue you work so hard to lose. Doing strictly cardio will create a caloric deficit, which means your body will use the energy it has stored in the form of fat and protein. While the scale says you’ve lost weight, you might be losing the wrong kind of weight. The energy will be coming from your fat, but it will be breaking down your muscles for that energy as well. As I stated earlier muscles keep calories burning at rest, so we want to keep those muscular gains! By adding resistance training into our workouts we can continue to build the muscle while creating that caloric deficit and get rid of the fat! Now ladies, you might be concerned. You don’t want to get bulky and muscular right? Put your fears to rest now! Most Women produce 0.5 mg of the hormone testosterone per day, compare this to most men, who produce 6-8 mg daily. Testosterone is a hormone that promotes growth of bones and muscle (as well as body hair), which is the reason that, on average, males are larger than females. Now, it takes a lot of hard hours at the gym for most days of the week for males to gain those beach body muscles they aspire to have, and that’s with the testosterone advantage! Women have to train harder multiple times a day for the majority of the week to naturally attain the same kind of results. Resistance training can also help with pregnancy, bone density and preventing injuries along with strengthening muscles. So don’t be afraid to pick up some weights instead of hitting the treadmill next time you’re at the gym!
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