If you’re like most people, you probably don’t have much time to workout. Yes, there are a select few who live at the gym or are lucky enough to work there, but I’m certainly not one of those people. While at the gym, I am consistent and focused, which maximizes my calorie burn.
In the past, I mainly focused on cardio and endurance workouts, like cycling, running, and high intensity interval training, often called HIIT. After adding two days of weightlifting into my weekly gym routine, I quickly realized the immense benefits from weightlifting, building muscle and destroying fat.
Benefits of Weightlifting
Weightlifting benefits your body in many different ways. The obvious benefit is that weightlifting makes you stronger, but it also destroys body fat, increases your metabolism, and increases your bone mass. Just by adding a weightlifting routine into your gym schedule, you can reap these amazing benefits.
Destroy Body Fat
Muscular fitness destroys body fat like no other exercise around, and here’s why.
Muscle is more active than fat. Makes sense; got it.
Muscle needs more energy than fat because it’s more active. Okay; got that too.
Your body uses a combination of sugars and fat as energy – once the sugars are depleted, your body turns to the fat stored within your body. While following a Paleo lifestyle, your sugar intake is usually quite low and is never enough energy for your muscles. So your body has no choice but to use your fat for energy.
If you only changed your diet and lost 10 pounds, 69% of the weight lost would be body fat. However, if you also added a weightlifting routine and still lost the same, 10 pounds, 97% of the weight lost would be body fat.
The fat within your body actually becomes food for your muscle cells and is gone forever. Gain enough muscle and your body fat will melt away. Less body fat means your muscles will be more defined, your clothes will fit better, and you will be well on your way to a stronger, better, healthier self.
It can’t get any better than that!
Following the same idea that your muscles are more active, need more energy, and burn more fat, your muscles also eat that energy faster than other, less-active cells in your body. The more muscles you have and the bigger and stronger they are, you burn more fat, faster, and your metabolism increases drastically.
Weightlifting increases your metabolism by an average of 10% to 15%. Even if you remain sedentary for the rest of the day, your body continues torching calories and destroying body fat.
Increase Bone Mass
Your bones are the foundation of your body – your bones provide the structure for your body and everything held within it. As your body ages, so do your bones, which makes various bone diseases, like osteoporosis, develop later in life. In fact, men and women begin loosing bone mass after the age of 30, which increases your risk of developing serious problems later in life.
By adding a weightlifting routine, you can prevent the deterioration of bone mass and keep your bones strong and healthy.
Low Weight versus High Weight
I relate my workout exertion level with my calorie burn. I strive to keep my calorie burn high, even on days of weightlifting. This essentially creates a weightlifting routine that incorporates cardio and maintains an elevated heart-rate. Within my 8 Powerful Exercise Benefits post, I illustrate how to determine what your target heart-rate should be.
The typical battle – low weight / high repetitions versus high weight / low repetitions. Fear not, my upper body workout is the best of both.
It’s based on a circuit approach, which involves 4 exercises per circuit. The first and third circuits focus on high weight / low rep exercises and the second circuit focuses on low weight / high rep exercises.
Rest for 30 seconds, and repeat the circuit for a total of three times. In between circuits, you can rest for 1-2 minutes as you catch your breath and recover, but not any longer than that. Stay on track and choose a weight heavy enough so you can barely finish the last rep of the third set.
Put your game face on, make your muscles stronger, and destroy your body fat.
For a great Leg Workout, check out my Killer Leg Workout.