Why Strength Train?

Why Strength Train?

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I cannot tell you how many times I have heard people, especially women, complain that they put in hours of cardio a week at the gym on a treadmill or elliptical machine and don’t see the results they want. They are discouraged when the weight doesn’t come off, and eventually many of these people resign themselves to the fact that they will never have the body they want. I, myself, used to be like that. What they don’t realize is that the key to a lean, toned body lies in strength training, not tortuously long runs.

Aerobic exercise is great for conditioning your cardiovascular system (your heart), but when it comes to losing weight, incorporating resistance training exercises is crucial:

Muscle is what gives you a toned, fit look. If the only exercise you did was cardio, and you lost some fat on your thigh, guess what would be underneath? More fat! The muscle tissue underneath the layers of fat in your body need to be developed if you want to change the shape of your body, which is what most people mean when they say they want to lose weight. And ladies, don’t worry about accidentally developing a bodybuilder physique. Most women simply do not have the testosterone levels to accomplish that.

Muscle burns more calories than fat at rest. Muscle tissue is much more metabolically expensive for your body to maintain than fat. Depending on the person, each pound of muscle will burn approximately 6-10 calories a day compared to fat’s 2 calories. You’ll burn some calories during your strength training workout, and your body’s metabolism will be slightly faster than before when you do just about anything, including sleep! This means it will be easier for you to achieve a negative calorie balance than by focusing on your diet alone.

Having more muscle will improve your functional mobility. Your muscles work together with your bones and joints to help you perform the actions you do every day: carrying your groceries or children, walking up stairs, bending over. Keeping your muscles conditioned and strong is especially important to keep in mind as you age. Strength training is not just for the young! As you get older, your body does not naturally maintain the amount of muscle mass it used to. Resistance training can help stave off some of this loss as well as help those who have lost some of their functional mobility due to inactivity.

If you would like help in starting your own resistance training program, please contact me at amy@honolulupersonaltrainer.com.

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