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Did you know that strength training is crucial for successfully losing weight and keeping it off? I'm talking about weight-bearing exercise. It doesn't have to be a huge, hulking workout where you're trying to look like Arnold Schwarzenegger in his prime, it just has to be some basic strength training. Losing muscle is a bad thing. Muscle tissue is very active--it burns a lot of calories. Every pound of muscle burns about 35 calories per day. Using the above example, if you lost 12 pounds, then, you lost three pounds of muscle. You would be burning 105 less calories per day or 3150 per month. Since there are 3500 calories in a pound of fat, you would gain almost one pound of fat per month just from the muscle mass that you lost! Why is strength training and losing weight that important? Because a lot of people try to starve themselves into weight loss. They think it's all about controlling calories. Unfortunately, a lot of dieticians and nutritionists don't really understand strength training, and they also think that it's just about calories. Calories in, calories out. If you have a calorie deficit, you're going to lose weight, if you consume extra calories, you'll gain body fat. While that's true, it's only part of the picture. Sure, you need a calorie deficit to lose weight, but how does your body actually use calories? It's your lean body mass, that muscle mass underneath your body fat, that burns calories 24/7, allowing you to actually eat more calories without gaining weight. How can we lose and keep off extra fat? You need to increase your resting metabolic rate (RMR), which is the pace your body burns calories at rest. Your RMR is closely linked to the amount of muscle you have--remember, muscle burns more calories than fat. Adding muscle will raise your RMR and will greatly increase the chance that the weight loss (more accurately fat loss) will be maintained. Contrary to what many people think, strength training is as important, maybe more important to successful fat loss than aerobic exercise. The reason lies in the amount of calories that are burned when you aren't exercising. Let's say you happen to be quite obese and you have a high percentage of body fat. I used to be in that situation; I know what it feels like. Underneath that body fat you actually have a very strong skeleton and strong muscles. Your body has built up those muscles in order to carry all of that extra body fat when you move your body. Just the very act of standing up, walking across a parking lot, going up a flight of stairs or lifting your arms requires more effort when you're overweight, especially if you're obese. So the heavier you are, the stronger your muscles have to be just to allow you to do basic, everyday things. The solution to all of this, the strategy I want to focus on here, is to engage in strength training


while you are losing body fat. If you do this, then you will be able to maintain the muscle mass that you already have underneath your body fat while you are in the process of losing the fat. This will leave you with a greater proportion of lean body mass to body fat, meaning that you will be slimmer, yet you'll have the muscles that you had when you were overweight. If you get rid of enough body fat in this way, then those muscles may begin to show -- if you're a man. If you're a woman, don't worry. You're never going to bulk up. A lot of women are mistakenly afraid of strength training. They think that if they pump a few weights they're going to turn into Lou Ferrigno overnight. They think they're going to have this competition muscle-bound body from lifting a couple of weights. Believe me, that is not the case at all. Most of those bodybuilding women are using steroids, and they've trained for years, even decades, just to produce that kind of muscle mass. Women are not built to puts on lots of muscle mass, so don't be afraid that you'll bulk up. Women who are afraid of exercising because they think it's going to make them look bigger have it all wrong. Strength training and weight loss are so important for overweight people because strength training and weight loss leads to a healthy life, a nice body and will keep you in a good shape.

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Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=A._M._McKain

==== ==== Please check out The Secrets Of Healthy Weight Loss for great tips on Women and Weight Loss. www.bestweightlosspractices.com ==== ====


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