Weight Training or Cardio??

Perhaps your New Year’s Resolution is to lose weight so you will feel and look better but you have no idea where to start.  There is a lot of information out there and some of it is very confusing.  You may have read the recent article in the Atlanta Journal Constitution which stated that aerobics is the best way to burn fat as opposed to weight training therefore doing aerobics is the best way to lose weight. I cannot disagree that participating in aerobic activity does burn fat more quickly that lifting weights BUT you have to look at the WHOLE picture and if you want to lose weight and KEEP it off you need to do BOTH.  You will sabotage your quest to lose weight if all you do is aerobics and I will explain why.

FACT: Lean muscle mass is the most caloric hungry material in your body so the more lean muscle mass you have on your body, the more efficiently your body will burn calories, even at rest.

FACT: Starting in your 30’s, just as a process of aging, you will lose an average of 5 to 8 lbs. of muscle mass per decade.

FACT:  Your metabolism DECREASES when you lose weight since it takes less energy to move a lighter body around on a daily basis.  Example: Suppose your starting weight was 200 lbs. and you lose 25 lbs.  It will take you less energy to move a 175 lbs. body on a daily basis than it did to move a 200 lbs. body.

FACT: The bottom line is, you need to do BOTH!  You need to engage in aerobic activity regularly to burn fat.  BUT, in order to keep your metabolism revved up so your body can burn calories more efficiently on a daily basis and KEEP the weight off, you need to participate in some type of weight resistance training 2-3 times per week. Strength/weight training will help to counteract the natural aging process and keep lean muscle mass on your body.

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This post was written by Patti on January 7, 2013

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