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10 reasons why you must lift weights to lose fat


Oh boy, dont some women just love to get on a treadmill and walk while watching "Desperate housewives", just like those "always stressed out businessmen" on the treadmill watching the share market news thinking that they are getting lean and healthy. After all it does get some sweat going, and there is some exercise. But is that enough for serious fat loss?

Getting anywhere?

If you have not exercised a finger in the last 5 years or more, then even some gentle activity will help you to lose fat as long as you clean up your diet, but it will not take you far! You need more intense training in the long run. While cardio does have a role to play in fat loss, it is also true that for best results, weight training should be added too. And especially if you want to get ripped, lean, and hard, rather than skinny fat, then weight training becomes even more important.


The strange thing is that even though most top coaches around the world, including the trainers on popular reality shows like The biggest loser  use weight training with their clients, there are still those who would rather prefer to do only light aerobic training than lift a weight. That is something I just cannot understand.

Starting from weight training is too dangerous, to women complaining that it will make them look like a man, I have heard all types of weird reasons as to why some people avoid weights for fat loss. Oh by the  way, for those women who think that weight training will make them manly, I always thought that it involved a very complex surgical procedure to convert a woman into a man. I did not know that it could be done by such a cheap and simple method like lifting weights, LOL.

Anyways, since you are reading this page, I am sure you that are a reasonable person who listens to logic. So let me share with you 10 good reasons as to why you will find it beneficial to lift weights to lose fat:


1) It builds lean muscle to boost metabolism- a pound of muscle burns about 50 calories a day, which means that if you build 10 pounds of lean muscle, then your body will burn an extra 500 calories a day. Now before you think that you will build huge muscles, let me assure you that I am talking of adding a little lean muscle while burning tons of fat. So the net result is that your overall weight comes down and you become slim and fit.


2) It creates a greater afterburn when compared to cardio- weight training creates a far greater afterburn when compared to regular cardio, which means that you burn more calories for 24 hours or more after you have finished the last set. Yes, that means you burn a lot more even when you are resting, or like reading this article when compared to cardio which does not have a significant afterburn. Thus keep in mind that though cardio may burn more calories during the period of a workout, weight training will burn more calories at the end of the day, when you compare the two.


3) Very time efficient- those damn slow, aerobic walks just take too long to complete! And if you are someone who is short on time, then I dont know how you will find time for 60-90 minute walks for 5-7 days a week. On the other hand intense weight training can give you a great fat loss workout in as little as 30 minutes 3-5 times a week. Yep, 4-5 major exercises done with no more than 90 seconds break can be completed in very little time in the comfort of your very own home. While there are other benefits of slow aerobic workouts, it really cannot be an option if you are hard pressed for time.


4) Makes you physically attractive with more definition- okay ladies, would you be ok if you lost 2 inches on your arms, while you still have a lot of hanging skin from the triceps? And guys, would it be ok to lose inches from your waist while still having a bulging belly and no visible abs? I am sure that you will want some definition, firmness, and toning when you lose the excess fat. This is something that is best achieved by weight training. Thus if you have lost a lot of weight via cardio, but still find your belly bulging, or that skin hanging from the triceps, you should know that you have missed out on lifting weights. No wonder then that those who lift weights are the ones most likely to have 6 pack abs, or those slim and toned arms when compared to the "still soft" aerobic junkies. Believe me, weight training will make you a much greater head turner on the streets thanks to a hard, defined body.


Certainly only dieting and cardio cannot get you those abs


Does she looked toned with weight training?

5) Preserves muscle tissue- a common side effect of severe dieting is that your lean muscle mass goes down with time. And the problem with losing lean muscle mass is explained in points number 1 and 4. According to a study in which its participants were allowed only 800 calories a day for a period of 90 days, it was observed that the participants added to the cross sectional area of their muscle fiber, while losing an average of 35 pounds. Yeah, they actually gained some muscle while losing fat and that too being on such a restricted food intake! And yes, it was thanks greatly to weight training.

Now I am not suggesting that everyone will surely add muscle while they lose fat, it is however obvious that weight training can help preserve precious muscle tissue, and not allow the metabolism to slow down due to dieting. This also why those who do only aerobic training find it hard to lose fat after a point, because they have  burned up a lot of precious muscle tissue to have a fast metabolism.


6) Weight training allows you to eat more- Okay now dont get too excited. I am not talking about eating 5 buffets a week, but rather that you can eat a little extra when you lift weights and still lose fat. As I said earlier that weight training helps to boost metabolism by building lean muscle tissue, this means that you do not have to starve yourself to lose the fat. And frankly speaking, even 250 extra calories feel like gold when you are cutting calories to lose weight, believe me! Plus when you have lost all the fat that you need to, you will be in a position to eat a bit more than if you had only dieted and done aerobics.


7) Great for weak, obese people- I really find it funny and silly when I read workout recommendations by some online trainers who advise obese clients to do pull ups. While I do recommend bodyweight training as a necessity for fat loss, it is also true that for most fat individuals bodyweight training is very tough TO DO PROPERLY, simply because of their size. Sure, 10 strict pull ups are great, but it is not the same thing when someone does 10 "1 inch pull ups", where they just hang from the bar and pull themselves up only an inch for 10 reps. For such individuals 10 deadlifts or 10 rows would have been far more effective at hyping their metabolism.

The thing with weights is that it gives you an opportunity to do an intense exercise like overhead press, rows, squats, etc with proper form and full range of motion since you can adjust the load as per your strength. However with some intense bodyweight exercises you cannot always adjust the load to make it easier and yet effective.


8) Creates a better balanced body- okay so this applies to everyone irrespective of their goals, and certainly for fat loss too. After all defined legs (via running) with poor upper body is not that attractive, is it? The best thing about weight training is that you can work all bodyparts without creating an imbalance. Of course some people still do end up working their trouble areas more than other bodyparts, but that is their own mistake, and not because weight training lacks enough exercises.


9) Friendlier on the joints- pounding away endlessly on the running track/treadmill in an overweight shape and doing it too often is known to develop joint problems. After all taking 1000's of steps and putting all that weight on your poor joints in a repeated manner will put a lot of stress on them for sure. This is where weight training comes to the rescue. A good fat loss workout with weights will probably involve anywhere between 100-300 reps total! Now doesnt that sound a lot better for your joints already. While it maybe true that lifting very heavy weights can cause joint issues, it should also be noted that often this happens because of poor form, or too much haste in adding weight to the bar on the part of the trainee. As long as you lift according to your strength and in good form, you will have healthy and strong joints.


10) Great for overall well being and performance- for women weight training will help to keep problems like osteoporosis at bay, and for men it will help keep their testosterone levels high. If you are an athlete then weight training will help you to become faster and more explosive as you continue to lose the fat. Infact even regular folks will find daily living to be a lot easier since they will strain a lot lesser with daily activities as they get stronger, and require much less effort to lift or move anything.



Again, I would like to mention that I am not suggesting that you give up cardio, or follow a careless diet just because you lift weights. What I am trying to emphasize is that it should form a major part of your fat loss effort if you want the best results possible. And yes, also do keep in mind that weight training SHOULD NOT  be restricted to only lifting light pink colored dumbbells. Lift heavy as you get stronger, for that is the only way to keep increasing your metabolism!


Get ready to lift some weights


So to end the article here is a sample weight workout, that you can do to enhance your fat loss:


Do this program on 3 alternate days a week

1a) Overhead press                   3 sets of 10 reps
1b) Lunges                               3 sets of 8 reps each leg

2a) Push ups                            3 sets of as many reps as possible
2b) Goblet squats                     3 sets of 10 reps

3a) Seated cable row               3 sets of 10 reps
3b) Reverse crunches              3 sets of 10-15 reps

Do 1a, 1b with no rest and then  rest for 1-2 minutes before repeating for another 2 rounds. Same goes for the other supersets.


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