After my first year in college, I gained 20 pounds that I wanted to shed during the summer before I began my sophomore year of college. I made changes to my diet to include more whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins. I also made sure to do cardio every single day! I did this for about a month and wasn’t getting the results I was expecting. I spoke with a personal trainer at my gym and they explained to me that diet and cardio will help you lose weight, but weight lifting also helps burn fat.
I learned that weight lifting helps to increase your metabolism for a much longer period of time than cardio alone. Most people maintain a higher metabolic rate for 2 to 3 hours after doing cardio, but weight lifting helps to build and maintain muscle mass which results in a higher overall metabolic rate. To include cardio into my workout, the trainer suggested that I could do a machine and then jump on a bike or elliptical for 5 minutes at a high rate of intensity before moving to the next machine. I thought I was going to collapse the first time I tried this. My shirt was completely drenched in sweat after doing six machines and 30 minutes of cardio.
It’s important to make sure that you exercise all muscle groups! The trainer recommended alternating upper body days with lower body days. The trainer also recommended changing up the styles of workouts. On certain days, you can try doing more repetitions at a lower weight. It’s also important to change up your routine. A mix of cables, free-weights, and machines will help target different muscles that surround the larger ones. Changing up your routine also helps prevent boredom with a workout.
Most people think that lifting weight will result in weight gain, and this is true sometimes. But you will be healthier and your body will be more muscular and have less fat. After I started including weight lifting into my daily workout, I lost 10 pounds in 6 weeks. By the end of three months I lost 6 inches around my waist and 19.4 lbs (almost 20, but I was happy with the results)! I was leaner, stronger, and felt better than ever! I have continued to keep the weight off by making sure to include weight lifting with every workout.
Bio: Adam has maintained his healthy weight and enjoys sharing his success stories with others. He does his best to make it to the gym after work where he analyzes retail trends in sunglasses and socks for diabetics.