Weight Lifting And Weight Loss

By Janet Smith, PEERtrainer Health and Fitness Writer
"Women will lose more weight, be stronger and help prevent osteoporosis if they lift weights and lift more weight than they think they can or should."

Will you lose weight by weight lifting? The answer is not a simple yes or no. The correlation between weight lifting and weight loss may seem counterintuitive: lifting weights makes your muscles larger, which translates into bulk.   The relationship between weight lifting and weight loss is more complex and requires an understanding of the conversion of fat cells.

FACT - Muscles require energy for activity. If there's no food to burn, the body turns to the fat cells for energy.  Fat cell reduction happens when the body takes the fat stored inside the cells and converts it to glucose to provide the body energy.

This process occurs twenty-four hours a day. When there is little activity, such as sleeping, the energy requirements are less, but it is still required.   The key factor to weight loss is where the fuel for energy comes from. Does it come from the food you eat or your fat cells?

FACT-  The body must convert fat stored in the fat cells to energy in order for weight loss to occur.  How does weight lifting impact this process? When you're lifting weights, your body requires extra energy to complete the activity.  While this is a benefit, it's only a small portion of the total effect of weight training on weight loss.

FACT- Increasing muscle mass increases the body's energy needs.   If caloric intake does not increase,  the body will turn to the fat cells for the energy. Using the stored fat for energy will result in a reduction of the amount stored in your body.  Muscle is active tissue while fat is mainly storage tissue. For simple maintenance, muscles require much more energy than fat, which is why weight training can play a tremedous role in your weight loss efforts. 

Increasing muscle mass requires more energy, even for maintenance. Add the increased activity of weight lifting and your body is naturally burning more calories than if there is no weight training involved provided there isn't an increase the number of calories you eat per day.

Weight training will help weight loss. The most effective formula for weight loss includes aerobic exercise, healthy diet, and weight training. Combining these three areas into a weight loss plan gives you the optimum benefits of each.

What Are Easy Ways For Women To Weight Train?

Two ways of getting a good strength training workout in are the Total Gym and resistance bands. If you have the money and some space, you will find that Total Gym gives you an excellent workout at home in a short amount of time. You will be able to do a wide variety of exercises that get your heart rate up and work your muscles. PEERtrainer has done an extensive review of the Total Gym. Follow the link to watch a video where we show you how it works.

Resistance bands are also an excellent option. They are cheap and durable and easy to store and transport. Resistance bands remove any excuse one might have to get a quick workout in. PEERtrainer has also developed a video where we show you how to use resistance bands, and which resistance bands to buy.

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