Cardio warriors are the people you see at the gym who are focusing on cardio every single day. They will proudly tell you that cardio is their focus because it’s supposed to help them lose weight faster. But when you pay attention to their progress, you’ll see it is slow going for them. Doing cardio is great and should be done by everyone, but it’s only part of our fitness regimen. If you’re looking for the secret tips to boost fat loss, you won’t find it in cardio alone, instead, add weight training to your workouts.
Cardio helps people see results at the beginning of their workout journey and then people start to focus on cardio. The reason for that instant change is because people are usually going from little or no workout to a lot. However, over time, your body will catch up to the cardio routine you’ve been doing and results will slow. When this happens, we call it a plateau. The solution to that plateau? Adding weights to your workout.
A plateau is a loss in results in your regular workouts. Plateaus don’t only happen in cardiovascular workouts, they also happen in strength training. Plateaus show that our body is great at adapting to situations but terrible if the goal is to lose weight or gain muscle. There is only one way to get off that plateau and keep your body growing in the right direction, add weights. Weights will help you create a body composition change, add more muscle and keep bones dense while losing body fat. Not only will weight training give you the beach body you want, it will also speed up your metabolism.
A common misconception is that lifting weights is for building muscle and that’s it. While lifting weights will build muscle, it will also build bone mass. Together, muscle and bone mass will help your body operate more efficiently, even with your resting metabolic rate. Your resting metabolic rate is the rate at which your body uses energy throughout the day. By lifting weights, your body is in need of more energy, and that puts your metabolism into overdrive as it tries to keep up with you. Metabolism is important to burning fat as it is a set of chemical reactions that modify molecules for storage or for immediate use. In simpler terms, when we eat food, your body breaks that food down into molecules so your body can absorb them and use them for energy. The other option for those molecules is to store them for later; fat. Using that stored energy, fat, as you lift weights is the metabolisms job.
Weight training offers more than just physical benefits, it also provides mental benefits. Cope with stress better, improve self-confidence and just be happier with a little help from weight training. Research has shown us that resistance training can also be a good preventative measure for dementia. When we exercise, we release happy hormones in the brain. Those happy hormones make their way through our bodies. This is why, after training, we usually feel mellow, clear-headed, focused and happy. Exercise also releases endorphins, another chemical reaction in the brain that fights stress. In fact, those endorphins are meant to help make exercise more enjoyable, comfortable and block the feeling of pain.
There is no need to go out to the gym right now and hit it like you’re trying to become an Olympian. Instead, it means you just need to be consistent with your training to boost fat loss. Being focused is important and so is progressing. If results seem to slow down, the answer isn’t more time in the gym, the answer is better time spent in the gym. A simple 20-minute session, 2-3 days a week will be golden.