Most women tend to believe that the only way they can lose weight is by doing cardiovascular (aerobic exercise) without weight training. As a result, they take aerobics classes 5 times a week. Eventually, they notice that their bodies are a little smaller, but there are still somehow flabby and jiggly. Does this sound familiar? Aerobics exercises are vital for good health, but only serve half of the equation.
For longevity, optimal fitness and a lean body, there is need to incorporate weight training. If you avoid lifting since you are afraid of getting bulky, then you are avoiding one of the best methods to burn fat.
If you are weight training, you should not rely entirely on the scale to assess your progress. You can use a tape measure or a body fat tester to track how much you are losing. The body size will shrink since you are shedding fat and building muscle, but the weight might not change as fast as you would expect. Furthermore, what do you consider more important, how you seem in your skinny jeans or the number on the scale?
If you are not convinced that you should lift weights, here are 9 reasons to make you reconsider.
1. More muscle, more calorie expenditure
As you increase lean muscle mass, your body tends to use calories more efficiently. Muscle contractions contribute in dictating the number of calories you burn. Sitting tends to burn fewer calories compared to standing; standing burns fewer compared to walking, and walking burns less than strength training.
The more muscle contractions you have in a day, the more calories you will burn.
2. Your metabolism will soar
Women naturally lose muscle mass as they age. The aspect causes your metabolism to slow, and this means you could start to build a spare tire by the time you are in your 30s. Weight training helps you revive your metabolism, and it continues to burn for many hours after your workout.
3. Burns more fat
A research at Tufts University indicated that if overweight women were to lift heavy weights twice every week, they stand a chance to loss approximately 14.6 pounds of fat while gaining 1.4 pounds of muscle. During the study, women that dieted but did not lift weights, lost only 9.2 pounds and did not gain any muscle.
4. Your bones will benefit
By the time you are clearing high school, you have already established all the bone mineral density you will ever have; unless you strength train. Research indicates that weight training can help increase spinal bone mineral density by 13% in 6 months. This means that strength training is a commanding tool against osteoporosis.
Your body takes a nice hourglass shape as you gain muscle. Although endurance exercise helps you to lose weight, the weight comes in form of both muscle and fat tissue.
If you are losing both muscle and fat, you might lose the lovely curves too. Strength training helps create and sustain the curves.
6. Increased energy
Resistance training results to an increase in the energy expenditure hours after training. The chronic increase in energy expenditure favorably effects energy balance and fat oxidation. Instead of reaching for the early afternoon cup of coffee, just grab a barbell.
7. Fights depression
You have probably heard that low-impact exercises such as yoga and cardio help to alleviate depression. Well, weight lifting has a similar effect. The endorphins released during aerobics are also present during resistance training. A lot of women realize that regular strength training combined with psychological treatment will lessen their depression symptoms substantially.
8. Defend against diabetes
Weight training helps improve glucose utilization (the way in which the body processes sugar) by around 23%. Sixteen weeks of strength training may improve glucose metabolism in a manner that is similar to taking diabetes medication. The more the lean mass, the more efficient the body becomes at eliminating glucose from the blood. This helps to reduce diabetes complications or even prevent type 2 diabetes altogether.
9. Heart health
Pumping of iron may reduce the risk of heart disease. The American Heart Association has approved it as a healthy exercise for the people at risk. Individuals that lift weights are less probable to have heart disease risk factors like high triglycerides, a large waist circumference, elevated glucose levels and elevated blood pressure.