Weight Training For Fat Loss

weight training for fat loss

Why Is Weight Training Better Than Aerobic Training For Fat Loss?

It is common knowledge in the fat loss industry that if your goal is to be as lean as possible then weight training should be your dominant training method over cardio every week.  Gone are the days of endless cardio classes and steady state aerobic training for fat loss. 

Why is this considering weight training burns so few calories in comparison to cardio?

2 of the main reasons are :

Excess Post-exercise Oxygen Consumption or EPOC.

EPOC is more commonly known as the after burn effect. It means all of the oxygen (and energy, in the form of calories) that your body takes in and uses after exercise to help repair your muscles and recover. Research shows that strength training is especially effective at raising EPOC and low and behold resistance training produces greater EPOC responses than steady state aerobic exercise.

High-intensity resistance exercise disturbs the body’s homeostasis to a greater degree than aerobic exercise. The result is a larger energy requirement after exercise to restore the body’s systems to normal.

The underlying mechanisms that cause the higher EPOC observed in resistance exercise include

elevated neurotransmitters and catecholamines (adrenaline and noradrenaline), elevated hormones (cortisol, insulin, ACTH, thyroid, and GH) and elevated core temperature.

The harder the workout the higher the epoc. The more weights you do during the week the greater the weekly burn.  This adds up cumulatively over time so one training session won't do much for you but multiple sessions a week every month every year will.  Hence why consistency is king in hte fat loss game.

"If you can't stay motivated, stay consistent"

weight training for fat loss

Blood Sugar Management

There is not a supplement or drug on the planet that even comes close to the effect on insulin sensitivity that a full body workout has on the body.  If pharmaceutical companies could make a drug that had the effect one weight training session had on the body the fitness industry would be dead.

Insulin sensitivity refers to how well the body's cells behave in response to the hormone insulin. Insulin is released when we eat carbohydrate rich foods or calories in general. The more insulin sensitive your bodies cells are the better the body can shuttle the carbohydrates from your blood into your primary storage site for carbohydrates.....your muscles.

Roughly 70% of the carbs we eat are stored in our muscles, 20% liver, 10% blood.  When we lift weights we use that stored muscle carbohydrate ( glycogen ) to fuel the reps we do.  We then need to fill them back up so the carbs we eat then go into the muscle.  If you don't weight train there are relatively few carbs needed to restore muscle glycogen.

The more muscle you have the more carbs you can store and eat.

If you have 2 people on the exact same diet and one lifts weights and one doesn't, the one who lifts weights will always be leaner because of epoc and the blood sugar management they get from the carbs they eat going into the muscle.  Slowly over time they also just get better and better at shuttling more and more carbs into the muscles cells.

Steady state aerobic training doesn't tax the muscles of muscle glycogen as hard as weights.  Not even close.

This is why the primary intervention for diabetes is full body weight training as often as possible.

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