Are you running endless hours on the treadmill and getting nowhere? Not seeing any improvements on your running times or on your body shape?
Have you ever considered lifting weights? And I do not mean lifting those 2kg dumbbells, lifting heavy weights like Barbells & Dumbbells is what you need. Not only will it help you shift those unwanted inches, you will become stronger, leaner and more than likely improve your time on that 5K!
Strength is an essential element to a healthier life and there are plenty of benefits of lifting weights including:
- Become stronger
- Faster weight loss
- Easier weight maintenance
- Reduce the risk of injuries
- Stronger bones
- Perform better at other sports and general life
Cardiovascular exercise such as running swimming increases the heart rate and breathing rate, which burns calories as you do it and improves your endurance levels. It is a form of “Aerobic” activity which simply means your body uses oxygen during exercise while burning both fat and carbohydrates for energy.
Strength training, however, helps you to become stronger, leaner and can burn more fat in the long term.
Lifting weights is a form of “Anaerobic” activity involving shorts bursts of movements burning only carbohydrates for energy. It basically does not need oxygen.
Both activities differ in intensity, duration and the muscles they use. Yes, they both burn calories but in different ways. Running may burn calories as you do your session but lifting weights will allow you to burn more calories in the long term which is exactly what all of us need.
You cannot target a specific area for fat loss, but by increasing your strength along with a good diet, this will allow you to work towards that goal of a leaner body and perform better in every aspect of life!
One of the most obvious benefits of lifting weights, is you get stronger. Lifting heavy weights will not only make you stronger and leaner, but it will also help make everyday life jobs a lot easier. From lifting your shopping bags full of food to swinging your kids around, big compound movements like squats and deadlifts will only benefit your daily jobs.
Faster weight loss
Cardio has always been the go-to exercise for burning fat, but it has been shown that lifting weights will allow you to burn more calories in the long term.
Additionally, lifting weights can also be far more beneficial than cardio for losing belly fat and training your core muscles. Big compound movements such as squats and deadlifts will do far more for your core than 100 crunches a day! Maintain the weight loss Muscle burns more calories at rest than fat, so the more muscle you have, the higher BMR you will have. Lifting weights increases your lean body and as a result, you have an increase in your daily number of calories being burned. You will require a certain amount of food to allow your muscles to grow and maintain your muscle mass.
Reduce the risk of injuries
Lifting weights also increases strength in connective tissues and joints. It is essential to have strong joints, ligaments, and tendons as we age and prevent injury. An example would be if a runner previously had knee pain, it may have been down to the knee joint. By focusing on the surrounding muscles, you will be able to strengthen these muscles preventing pain and injury in the future.
Strength training is crucial to help minimize the loss of lean body mass seen with aging. Lifting weights not only strengthens your muscles, but it will strengthen your bones. Weight training increases bone density, which reduces the risk of fractures and broken bones in the future. Lifting weights can also assist in building a strong back and core which will help to correct bad posture and help prevent any lower back pain.
Perform better at other sports and life
Being stronger will also help with improving other sports you may take part in. If you are training correctly, you will see improvements in your power, speed, and endurance. Along with this, you will have no problem in carrying your groceries, moving furniture in your house and running after your kids. Strength training will only improve your day to day life.
Starting to lift weights can sound intimidating but isn’t that the case with starting anything new? Under the correct guidance, ensuring safety and good form, you will soon feel confident, become stronger, leaner and have an overall better performance in life.