In Part 1, we looked at why the TIME magazine article entitled “Exercise Can’t Make You Thin” may not have been entirely true. In the first part, I addressed why interval training exercises were far superior to steady state cardio exercises such as jogging, swimming or cycling.
In this article, I will elaborate on the many benefits provided by weight resistance exercises for weight loss.
Weight resistance training are exercises which stress your muscles against heavy loads. These loads can be dumbbells or even your own bodyweight. Resistance exercises that utilize your own body weight include push-ups, squats or even pull-ups.
Resistance exercises build your muscle mass. While this may excite most men, it should not frighten women away. Men tend to build bulky large muscles. Women on the other hand can never build bulky muscles. Women build muscles that are dense and compact.
The hulking women with bowling ball sized biceps that you would have seen in magazines are on steroids. A woman on a normal weight resistance exercise regime will find it extremely difficult to build any biceps at all. I would love to meet any woman out there who can build large muscles without taking steroids. I will pay you for your secret formula as I have been trying to do this for years.
Instead of building bulking muscles, these exercise are able to sculpt and shape a woman’s body as if a master sculptor was sculpting the statue of a Greek goddess. For ladies needing more information on weight resistance training, please read “Women & Weight Resistance Training“.
Why are weight resistance exercises so effective for losing weight. Its mainly due to the vast amounts of energy required to build and maintain muscles. In the scientific world, this energy to build and sustain muscle mass is known as Excess Post Exercise Oxygen Consumption or EPOC for short. It can be scientifically defined as the “recovery of the metabolic rate back to pre-exercise-levels”. It can take several minutes for light exercise and several hours for resistance or interval training type exercises.
In layman’s terms, it means that you continue burning calories at an increased rate after an interval or resistance training workout. This is what raises your metabolic rate. It literally means continuing to burn fat while you paint your nails (ladies), watch TV or even as you gobble down your dinner. Its some times also called the “afterburn” effect.
TIME Magazine should have referred to the study conducted by Schuenke in 2002 published in Eur J Appl Physiol. The study looked at the effects of weight training on EPOC. The exercises only took a total of 31 minutes. The researchers found that EPOC was elevated for 38 hours post workout. It could have possibly been longer but this is when the researchers stopped measuring. It means that after 31 minutes of exercise, the metabolic rate remained elevated for a whopping 38 hours.
In other words, that is 38 hours of continuous fat burn for 31 minutes of work. Isn’t this the best way to lose weight? Spend 31 minutes on exercise and enjoy a continuous 38 hours of fat burning?
Exercise definitely works for weight loss but it’s not just any exercise. It must be the correct exercises. The correct exercises for correct weight loss are interval training and weight resistance training irrespective of your gender. The studies referred to in the TIME magazine article were focused on cardio type exercises which are proven to be ineffective for long term weight loss.
For more information, please read “Why Resistance Training is More Effective that Jogging/Swimming for Sculpting Your Body“.