Or more accurately, fat loss. A lot of people shy away from resistance training (or weightlifting) for three main reasons:
1) fear of it making them look “bulky”;
2) fear of looking stupid, or like they don’t know what they’re doing;
3) they believe that cardio is the way to lose weight (or burn fat).
On the surface, these all look like valid reasons for avoiding weights like the plague, but when you dig a bit deeper, it kind of all falls apart….
Myth 1 – unless you weight train heavily (and I mean HEAVILY, like five days a week) for 6 months straight and take banned substances, you will not look bulky. It takes a lot more effort than you and I can even contemplate to put on enough muscle mass to look “bulky”. Please have a skip to my picture on the “Who Is Alex Valentine?” bit of my website; I weight train three times a week every week….do I look bulky? No. Do I feel more confident knowing I’m stronger and can fill out a pair of leggings with my ass? Yes!
Myth 2 – everyone is afraid of looking daft in the gym, you are not alone! But weights are for everybody, and if you’re not 100% confident or sure of what you’re doing, contact a Personal Trainer in your gym who specialises in weight training who can show you the ropes. Only bad PTs make other people feel bad for not knowing how to lift weights.
Myth 3 – cardio is the answer to all weight loss issues. There no easy way to say this….but it’s NOT true. If you love cardio, awesome! Keep at it, you gotta do what you love. But think about it; you get on the treadmill, jog at a mediocre speed for 30mins, see that you’ve burned (an estimated) 200 calories and go “yay! I burned calories!” Which is great, but as soon as you go home and have that post work out banana or a fat free super light yogurt cos you’re hungry, guess what? You’ve just put nearly 100 calories back into your body. Kinda defeats the object of the run really. But wait, before you decide to cut out even more food from your diet, have a think about a different approach to training….
When you lift weights and challenge your body to lift more than it normally does, your body does something amazing….it adapts. Your body realises it can’t handle what your throwing its’ way, and so it changes to cope. These changes include stripping away the weaker muscles fibres in your body and replacing them with stronger, denser, slightly larger fibres (creating what’s now referred to as “muscle tone”). Because lifting weights burns more calories than cardio, your body also creates more mitochondria in your muscle cells; these are the energy burners in your body….more mitochondria means more energy burners to expend calories. This in turn increases your basal metabolic rate for at least 48 hours after your workout.
In English? The bottom line is, lifting weights helps your body burn MORE calories even when you are AT REST. This to me is a winner, because I love nothing better than getting home after a heavy weights session, plonking down on the sofa, and knowing that even though I’m lazing around watching Columbo, my body is STILL burning calories! Work smart, not hard 😉
As always, if you want more information on how you can turn your bodacious bod into a fat burning machine, or as one of my client’s put it the other day, how to “sculpt your body”, call, text or email me on 07875465275 or firstname.lastname@example.org for a complimentary consultation 🙂