If you missed my last article 'Does the choice of exercise really matter?' You can still view it on my blog but I talked about what form of exercise is best for fat loss. I compared weight training, cardio, HIIT and group training/ classes and concluded that as long as you are creating a caloric deficit, you can achieve fat loss.
HOWEVER.. Including weights as a core part of your training has so many more benefits than simply creating a caloric deficit. There are numerous benefits of weights training, I've included some below:
- boosts metabolism, burning more calories at rest (good if you like food)
- strengthens the structure of joints
- improves bone density
- can increase cardio vascular health. (No treadmill required)
- reduces the risk of diabetes and insulin needs
- can improve flexibility and posture issues
Lifting heavy weights, using big muscles groups, with compound exercises, will build the body the majority of people go to the gym to achieve. So why are so many people not incorporating weights into their training?
There are way too many misconceptions. 3 of the most popular being..
1. To lose fat steady state cardio is the best or only way.
Not at all, if you want the biggest bang for your buck exercise with the most efficient results, weights are going to play the biggest part in that.
2. You'll get too bulky
Ladies, your bodies are simply not capable of building a substantial amount of muscle naturally.
You don't produce enough of the hormones needed to build a lot of muscle and certainly not in a short space of time. Also if your aim is fat loss, you should be in a caloric deficit (have a read through my first blog if your not sure what a caloric deficit is!), which makes it all the more difficult to build muscle.
You will however build a little muscle, burn fat, and look fantastic!
The gents who don't want the bodybuilder look and are happy with a lean physique, don't panic. It takes years of hard work. Intense weight training 5-6 times a week, eating like you probably couldn't imagine and missing out on the weekends with the lads are necessary to achieve those kind of results.
Yes you can build muscle, but you won't wake up after a few weeks of training and think "shit.. I'm massive". Again, especially not in a caloric deficit.
You will however, build muscle slowly over time that gives you the lean beach-bod physique you want. You might even enjoy change in your physique and training and progress from that!
3. Every one in the weights room is a professional weight lifter and will judge your every move.
Don't ever be worried about going into the weights room of the gym. It can sometimes be very daunting for women and men. Trust me no one is judging you, the chances are if you asked any of the more experience looking weight lifters there to help you, they would. If they don't look as experienced, chances are they are just as conscious as you. Walk in full of confidence, with your plan, smash your session and believe me it won't be as scary as you might think.
How to include weights in your plan?
This can vary on your current fitness/ experience. For a beginner I would recommend introducing weights 2/3 times a week with full body sessions. Focus on perfecting your form. Push your muscles to fatigue/ failure on the last sets of each exercise, keep rest times low and focus on compound exercises using big muscle groups. Using supersets (2 exercises no rest) or Tri-sets (3 exercises no rest) is perfect for a fat loss plan if set out correctly. Your sessions should include a good warm up, stretch to finish and last no longer than 45-60 minutes MAX! That's long enough for anyone..
Any question please comment on the article or email firstname.lastname@example.org