Contrary to popular belief, cardio is not necessarily the only form of exercise that can help you to lose weight. In fact, recent studies and tests have shown that full-body workouts done using weights are yielding better results.
People are losing more weight in a shorter time. Their full-body workouts burn more calories overall and also help tone their bodies. It’s like killing two birds with one stone.
However, unlike cardio which is usually more straightforward, when employing weights in your workouts, you need to be aware of a few things.
• Correct form
When doing exercises like deadlifts, the form is of paramount importance. Do it wrong, and you just might throw out your back. Injuries are much more common in weight training than cardio activities.
So, you should always learn the correct form to execute the moves. If you’re in a gym, seek the help of one of the floor trainers to guide you.
Never sacrifice form for speed. If you can’t move the weight with a good shape for 10 to 12 reps during 45 seconds, the weight is too heavy. Use a lighter weight. Avoid jerky and wild swinging movements at all cost.
• Compound movements
Always use compound movements if your goal is to lose weight. You’ll burn more calories by working the larger muscle groups. It’s also easier to tone several different muscles at once rather than just doing one a day.
Shedding fat and building muscle are diametrically opposed. It’s best not to aim for both at the same time. Since you’re trying to lose weight, the goal is to work several muscles and burn as many calories as you can and be at a caloric deficit.
Once you’ve lost the excess fat, then you can focus on specific muscles and increase their size… while being at a caloric surplus.
• 2-3X a week
Aim to engage in resistance training twice or three times a week. So many people make the mistake of only doing cardio daily… and to make matters worse, it’s always the same type of cardio.
Their results stagnate, and even if they lose weight, their bodies are never really toned or anything much to look at. Resistance training will challenge your body, burn the calories, tone your muscles, and give you the beach body look that turns heads wherever you go.
You need to mix it up with your cardio to get the best results. The two are not mutually exclusive. You can do resistance training on days you’re not doing cardio.
Give yourself time to rest and recover. If your muscles are still sore from the previous workout, you’re better off just doing a 45-minute brisk walk on the treadmill. Going hard at the gym every single day can be very taxing on your nervous system.
Just because you have a plan, doesn’t mean you neglect how your body feels. Listen to your body. It will talk to you. If it needs rest, focus on another way to get a gentler workout.
At the end of the day, you need resistance training and cardio to get the benefits of both. Follow the pointers above, and you’ll be on the right track to losing all your excess weight and becoming lean and fit. It’s well within your reach.