How Resistance Exercises Can Help You Stay Lean
When people are starting out on their weight loss journey, they typically focus primarily on one thing; diet. Restricting their calorie intake, or cutting back on fat in the hope that the weight will quickly fall off.
And this makes sense, as the saying goes, you can’t outrun a bad diet.
As an afterthought, people tend to introduce some cardio exercise; either walking more, or going out for a jog. While this is definitely a step in the right direction, they are still missing a key component that will not only help them to lose weight faster, but also to look and feel great and keep the weight off for longer. We are of course talking about resistance exercises.
There is a misconception that resistance exercises will make you look too muscular or bulky, which is perhaps why they are sometimes overlooked, by they are in fact an excellent tool to help you achieve your fitness goals.
Benefits of Resistance Exercises
Resistance or weighted exercises have several key benefits that you don’t necessarily get from other forms of exercise, including:
- High Intensity – One of the great things about resistance workouts is that they are typically high intensity, so you get the benefits from doing a few sets of weighted exercises without having to spend ages in the gym.
- Improved muscle tone – Focusing too heavily on diet and cardio exercise can leave you looking skinny and frail. Resistance exercises will help to build up your muscle mass and improve muscle tone giving you a more athletic figure.
- Decreases risk of injury – Building muscle has many knock on effects such as improving your balance, decreasing the strain on your bones and joints and giving you better posture. All of this adds up to a far lower risk of injury, especially as you get older.
- Wellbeing and self-esteem – While all exercise will positively impact your mood, resistance exercises are a great way to help improve your body image which in turn can help boost your self-esteem.
One of the best things about resistance exercise is that it helps to build lean muscle mass. This is really important if you want to stay lean without constantly being on a diet, or having to do long cardio workouts, because even at rest, muscle burns more calories than fat.
In simple terms, this means by maintaining your muscle mass, though short resistance workouts, you could effectively eat more, or do less cardio, and stay in the same shape.
You don’t need to join a gym or purchase expensive equipment to add resistance to your workouts, most exercises can be done with a very simple set of free weights.
To get the most from your workouts in the shortest amount of time, focus on the larger muscle groups such as the glutes and quads, or the back and you’ll get greater definition in no time.