Want To Lose Fat? Don’t Ignore Your Muscles!

Exercise, Health, Weight Loss Add comments

Most of the fat loss exercise programs you see in the media are making a big mistake…

They ignore the most IMPORTANT thing for fat loss:

your muscles.

In fact, most of the cardio-centric magazine routines you read will actually cause you to lose muscle, which makes burning off fat much, much harder than it should be.

(Metabolic muscle tissue = much easier fat loss)

Most people don’t even think about muscle during a fat loss program – but YOU should!

Here are five reasons muscle will help you lose more fat:

1. Having more muscle means you’ll burn more calories during your workout.

With more muscle you’ll burn more during any type of workout: yoga, cardio, weightlifting, walking, whatever.  You’ll get a lot more bang for your buck whenever you’re moving.

2. Working your muscles also means you’ll burn more calories when you’re NOT working out

Ask an exercise scientist how many Calories a pound of muscle burns per day and you’ll probably hear “A pound of muscle burns 50 Calories a day”

Actually, studies have shown a burn from anywhere between 35 and 65 Calories per day, so 50 is a good average.

That means if you add two pounds of lean, toned muscle to your body, you’ll burn an extra 700 Calories a week.

It might not sound like much, but 700 Calories a week means a pound of fat burned every 5 weeks, or… more than 10 extra pounds lost in a year.

 3. Muscle is what gives your body its shape.

Muscle is the difference between having a butt and having a booty.

Without muscle your body will be flat, flabby, and squishy.  Having muscle is what gives your body the lean, fit look.

4.  Training your muscles (instead of just cardio) is more fun…

…and if your workout plan is more stimulating, you’ll stick with it longer.

Plus, training more athletically will improve “neuromuscular efficiency,” which means you’ll be using more muscle in everything you do.  So, to go back to point #1 above, you’ll burn more calories with more muscle, but if you can activate even MORE muscle, you’ll burn even MORE calories.

5. Tone.

“Tone” is so overused I hate to even bring it up.  First, let me say that there’s no such thing as a “toning” workout with just light weights.

The way to get toned muscles is to have some muscle shape (#3 above) and less body fat.

Tone actually refers to your nervous system’s link to your muscles.  If there’s a high electrical potential in the nerves leading to a muscle it is more ready to flex than if there’s low potential.  This is tone.

Take the butt as an example: someone can be thin and flabby at the same time – they’ll have kind of a droopy butt despite not being overweight.

Now take someone who has some butt muscles and they’re primed from deep squats, jumps, sprints, etc – the butt muscles will be lifted and shaped.

So to make “tone” work for you, lose fat and train like an athlete.

The bottom line is that if you want to burn more fat and look great, train your muscles, don’t break them down with hours on a cardio machine.

(I’ve written about the benefits of lean muscle before, check it out here: Get Some Firmness On Your Frame)

One Response to “Want To Lose Fat? Don’t Ignore Your Muscles!”

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