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Benefits of Weight Training for Weight LossBenefits of Weight Training for Weight Loss


Benefits of Weight Training for Weight Loss

Minimize muscle loss.

For many people, a desire for weight loss has resulted in extreme measures. A drastic reduction in calories can cause a loss of lean muscle mass, but regular strength training helps to repair this damage. When you include strength training while consuming a healthy amount of calories and protein, you can build muscle mass and reduce further muscle loss.

Boost fat loss.

Studies conducted by strength training expert, Wayne Westcott, PhD., show that women who performed strength training exercises two to three times per week for eight weeks gained 1.75 pounds of muscle and lost 3.5 pounds of fat.

The stronger you are, the more you can do.

The stronger you are, the more efficiently you can perform everyday activities. Improved strength also allows you to work harder during workouts, which results in more total calories burned for weight loss.

The truths and myths of boosting metabolism.

The extra calories burned from increasing muscle aren’t as high as once believed, but the boost is still worth the effort. It was once thought that each pound of muscle burned up to 50 extra calories per day. While it is still a topic of debate, many researchers believe that a pound of muscle actually burns somewhere between 7 to 15 extra calories per day. It’s estimated that a pound of fat burns 2 to 3 calories.

According to the American Council on Exercise, most individuals gain 3 to 5 pounds of muscle after 3 to 4 months of strength training. Let’s say you replace 3 pounds of fat with 3 pounds of muscle. Using the estimate that 1 pound of muscle burns 10 calories and 1 pound of fat burns 3 calories, you will burn 21 extra calories a day. In a year, this results in losing over 2 pounds. While this is a small number, considering the many benefits of weight training, this added bonus certainly doesn’t hurt.

Lori Rice, M.S., is a nutritional scientist and author with a passion for healthy cooking, exercise physiology, and food photography.
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