Stop Resisting Resistance Training
Written by Jen Jones, Nov. 18, 2018
Adding muscle mass to your body is critical for long-term success when it comes to losing weight, maintaining a healthy weight, or – obviously – getting stronger. Resistance training, in the form of bodyweight or free-weight, is essential for this outcome. Strength training sustains and increases your metabolism, burns calories and provides your body with so many health benefits.
If you live that hamster-wheel life, and only spend your time doing cardio, check out the following reasons why strength/resistance training is a crucial part of any successful fitness program…
Maintain Your Metabolism
Resistance training is very beneficial when it comes to burning fat. Your muscle tissue is very metabolically active (it is one of the biggest contributors to metabolic rate) and when you lift weights, your body is forced to maintain its muscle tissue. This helps to maintain your metabolism, even if your calorie intake is reduced.
When you sustain, or even slightly increase your metabolism with resistance training, take in less calories, and keep your hormones in check, the body has to rely on stored body fat as fuel. Over time, this should make you leaner and more toned. On the flip side, if you lose muscle mass (especially by overtraining with cardio and avoiding weights) you will slow your metabolism and impede weight-loss.
Feel the Burn
Some studies have proven that a strength training workout can burn calories for up to 12-48 hours AFTER your training session!
In a HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) workout, like 9Round, which combines cardio and resistance training, the idea is to crank your heart rate up to 85-90% of its maximum so that you are working anaerobically, or without oxygen. This leads to EPOC (Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption), also known as the afterburn effect, where you’re burning more calories throughout the day because your body has to recover from that intense exercise.
When you’re jogging at a moderate pace all day on the treadmill, you’re using a different energy system (aerobic), which primarily uses oxygen to fuel your muscles. In other words, when you go for a casual jog, you don’t induce the afterburn effect and therefore don’t burn any additional calories later in the day.
Build Muscle, Burn Calories
Sure, you need a calorie deficit to lose weight, but how does your body actually use calories? It is your lean body mass, that muscle mass underneath your body fat, that burns calories 24/7. A lot of people try to lose body fat by starving themselves. As the body fat vanishes from their body, their muscle mass also disappears.
While the body eliminates muscle mass, your metabolism begins to slow. If you reduce muscle mass, allowing it to go away by not challenging your muscles, then your metabolism is going to slow. You may be lighter, but it’s suddenly so much easier to put on body fat because your muscles aren’t using those calories you consume as fuel.
Not only does resistance training help with sustainable weight-loss, it also:
- Increases bone density and help prevent osteoporosis
- Elevates “feel-good” hormones and act as an anti-depressant
- Improves muscle strength and tone
- Protects joints and ligaments
- Improves balance, mobility and coordination
- Boosts stamina/endurance
- Improves focus
- Reduces risk of injury
- Improves posture
- Increases self-confidence, self-esteem and body image
- Reduces insomnia
- Enhances performance of everyday tasks
When done properly, a resistance training workout combines cardiovascular elements with movement skills. This gives you cardiovascular benefit, helps with endurance, and provides you with long-term toning and weight loss success. And, you don’t have to spend hours in a gym completing the workout. In just 30 minutes at 9Round, you can reap all of the benefits mentioned above. If you haven’t tried it yet, your first workout is FREE! Find a location near you and start getting stronger in 30 minutes, today!