The Benefits of Resistance Training
I’m sure you are probably sick of hearing me say it, but I’m going to repeat myself yet again and stress that exercise doesn’t have to be about hammering it out on the treadmill for hours on end! Aside from getting a little boring at times this can actually be restricting the amount of calories that you burn. That’s right, lifting weights may offer you more bang for your buck in the calorie burning stakes!
Here comes the science! It’s actually got to do with the time away from the exercise; post resistance training metabolism actually lasts much longer than that of cardiovascular training. The more lean muscle you have the more energy is required to maintain it, so the more calories you burn outside of exercise.
But don’t worry it doesn’t mean you have to suddenly turn into the incredible hulk! Resistance training simply means training your muscles using an opposing force; that could be dumb bells, resistance bands, body bars, kettle bells and medicine balls to name a few and the theory works whether your goal is toning or building muscle. Check out the list of benefits you can expect by simply incorporating resistance training into your current routine.
Improved body shape: Visibly firmer, leaner, toned muscle
Increased strength and power: Whether you are training for a sport or just to make everyday day tasks easier (functional fitness)
Improved posture: increased strength, flexibility and muscle balance improve your posture
Better bone health: weight bearing activity can maintain bone density and help delay the onset of osteoporosis
Increased metabolic rate: more muscle = more calories burned
I’m not saying that cardio doesn’t burn calories, of course it does along with its many other health benefits that we’ve already looked at, what we should look to do is find a happy medium of both, look to find a routine that you enjoy, keeps you motivated and allows you to maintain your specific goals.