Should you weight train if you want lose weight?

Too many women believe that the only way to lose weight is to do tons of cardio. They decide to start jogging or take aerobic classes five or more times a week. But what tends to happen? They notice their bodies get a little smaller but there are still those “flabby” and “jiggly” areas that aren’t changing.

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Have you been there too?

Cardio is part of the solution; but not all of it! In order to achieve long lasting fitness and goals you can be proud of; you MUST work on weight training and flexibility training too. If you are afraid to lift weights heavier than 5 lbs over time, you are missing out on the best fat burning methods around!

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When you lift weights, you shouldn’t focus only on the scale. The scale doesn’t tell us what is happening WITHIN our bodies at any given time. (which can seem confusing but trust me here!) I like my clients to focus more on picture updates, measurements and clothing fit. The size of your body will shrink as you build muscle and shed fat, but sometimes that scale won’t shift as you’re used to when you’re focused on dieting and cardio only. How important is the number on the scale when you look hot and tight in your skinny jeans, anyway, right?

Here are 10 reasons you should reconsider lifting weights in order to reach your goals….

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1. You will burn more fat. When you do an intense weight-training program, your metabolism stays elevated and long after your workout ends and you continue to burn fat for several hours afterward. During your cardio exercise, however, you stop burning fat shortly after the workout.

2. It will change the shape of your body. I always thought that my genes were the biggest reason my body looked the way it did. It’s not completely true. With weight training, you can slim down, create new curves and help change the “I’m over a certain age and my body won’t change much more” mentality. And ladies, you will not bulk up by lifting weights! We don’t have enough muscle building hormones to gain a lot of mass like men can. If we focus on eating a clean and calorie deficit meal plan, we will burn fat.

3. It helps to boost your metabolism. The less muscle you have, the slower your metabolism will be. As women age, they lose muscle at increasing rates, especially after the age of 40. When you diet without doing resistance training, up to 25 percent of the weight loss may be muscle loss. Weight training while dieting can help you preserve and even rebuild muscle fibers. The more lean mass you have, the higher your metabolism will be and the more calories you’ll burn all day long.

4. You’ll become stronger and feel more confident. Lifting weights increases functional fitness, which makes everyday tasks such as carrying children, lifting grocery bags, and picking up heavy suitcases much easier. According to the Mayo Clinic, regular weight training can make you 50 percent stronger in 6 months. Being strong is also empowering. Not only does it improve your physical activities, it builds emotional strength by boosting self-esteem and confidence.

5. It helps to build strong bones. It’s been well documented that women need to do weight-bearing exercise to build and maintain bone mass, and to prevent osteoporosis. Just as muscles get stronger and bigger with use, so do bones when they’re made to bear weight. Stronger bones and increased muscle mass also lead to better flexibility and balance, which is especially important for women as they age.

6. It helps fight depression. You’ve probably heard that cardio and low-impact exercises such as yoga help alleviate depression, and weight lifting has the same effect. The endorphins that are released during aerobic activities are also present during resistance training. Many women find that regular strength training, along with psychological treatment, helps lessen their depression symptoms substantially.

7. Improves sports fitness. You don’t have to be an athlete to get the sports benefit of weight training. Improved muscle mass and strength will help you in all physical activities, whether it’s cycling with the family, swimming, golfing, or skiing…whatever sports you enjoy most.

8. It helps to reduce injuries and arthritis. Weight lifting improves joint stability and builds stronger ligaments and tendons. Training safely and with proper form can help decrease the likelihood of injuries in your daily life. It can also improve physical function in people with arthritis.

9. Helps get our hearts healthy! More than 480,000 women die from cardiovascular disease each year, making it the number-one killer of women over the age of 25. Most people don’t realize that pumping iron can also keep your heart pumping. Lifting weights increases your “good” (HDL) cholesterol and decreases your “bad” (LDL) cholesterol. It also lowers your blood pressure. The Journal of the American Medical Association reports that people who do 30 minutes of weight lifting each week have a 23 percent reduced risk of developing heart disease compared to those who don’t lift weights.

10. Defends against diabetes. In addition to keeping your heart strong, weight training can improve glucose utilization (the way your body processes sugar) by as much as 23 percent The more lean mass you have, the more efficient your body is at removing glucose from the blood, which can reduce complications from diabetes or even help prevent type 2 diabetes in the first place.

Any questions?

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The truth about your ABS!

Let’s talk about ab moves that SUCK!

I am always amazed at the amount of people I still see at the gym doing crunches and sit-ups, while they are pulling on their heads, straining their necks (can you say neck ups?), and just doing nothing more than engaging the most superficial layer of their ab region. So not going to help you with those rock hard abs, peeps!

I know you’re probably sick of hearing abs are made in the kitchen, right? But in all honesty, not until I made this my priority in my goals – focusing on everything I ate and drank – did I really start to see my abs show up. Don’t even think about giving me the excuses like “but I had babies” or “I have gained and lost so much weight over the years that I can’t ever get my abs back” …I have ZERO tolerance for excuses. Excuses are simply your way of telling me, “Kathy, that’s cute but I don’t WANT TO!”…

So even though our foods and drinks are a huge component of attaining the abs we are seeking – what we do and what we don’t do in our workouts is also super duper important and will create those defined abs like you’ve always wanted.

So let’s break it down into FACTS first. What helps with getting a flat and tight ab section:

 #1: We start by burning off the layer of FAT first!

Plain and simple, we can’t spot reduce fat. If you simply train your abs daily you will never see (or enjoy showing off) your abs in the first place. Why? Because you most def have a six pack but it’s covered up by that sexy layer of FAT! :-/ You can’t just take part of a “30 Day AB Challenge” and expect to be guaranteed your abs to pop. No matter how many minutes a day and how many new and exciting ab and core moves you complete, you will never lose your body fat in the same order you put it on. Sad, but true. 😦

Our genetics actually play a big role in this truth. We can eat right, we can workout until the cows come home (I still want to know, where did the cows go in the first place?) but those pesky genes are going to be responsible for some of our results. One way to help speed up these results and help to change the shape of our body and abs, is in HIIT workouts. We will cover that in this post too.

LOL!! I'll take my abs with some extra FLUFF on top! ;)

I love the fact that nothing burns fat faster than some high intensity kick ass training…or “HIIT”. This not only works your body, kicks your butt in cardio, makes your muscles scream; but it also works your entire core along the way.

One way to take your current workouts up a notch, is to add 15-20 minutes of explosive movements to the start or end of your workout; or do a conditioning circuit that includes it. Check out this workout as a great example.

The next best way I like to shred body fat is to add in strength training. It’s a common misconception that women will bulk up by lifting weights heavier than their handbags…but not freaking true!!! Remember, the more lean muscle we have on our bodies, the more calories we burn even when sitting on our asses. True story. 😉 Check out this strength workout to see some great results.

I usually cycle through periods of heavier weight training (8-12 weeks) and then bodyweight training (4-6 weeks) depending on my goals, on my schedule and on my time. They are both awesome and effective ways to get a great body, burn some fat and show off your amazing abs!!

#2: Train your entire core section to emphasize those abs

If you really want shredded abs, you need to stop doing the moves you learned in P.E. classes. The truth of it is, you seriously need to focus on strengthening ALL OF YOUR CORE in order to see the abs pop like you want. That means doing moves that use your lower back muscles, your deeper core stabilizers and the layers of ab muscle that protect your organs and keep you standing taller. An example for this is when you take on a new workout or push harder through a tough run, you will feel sore in your core (I like to rhyme every time..lol) even when you didn’t get on the ground and complete any traditional ab moves.

 

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Our bodies are kind of awesome and and protects us against building too much muscle on one side of our body versus the other side. It protects us because of the fact that too much muscle on one side of the body will put added stress on our bones and start to pull us out of alignment.

Still think you can outsmart your body? Dude, it’s freaking INTELLIGENT!!

So be sure you’re adding moves that target your lower back (aka: back core) as well as the different layers of abdominal muscle too!

7 Weeks Out!!!

To get started:

Sign up and complete my 30 Day Ab challenge HERE and then get started with the next program that will help you advance by signing up below for my ONLINE BOOTCAMP CHALLENGE to help you start shredding those abs!