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19 Mar 2007

Using weights for fat loss

I am 17kg away from my goal weight. I currenty power walk for 45min, 5 times a week but would like to start using some light weights with high reps. Somebody advised me against this as they said I should rather wait until I am closer to my goal weight. I thought that this would help me loose weight faster. Now I am confused - please advise!
Answer 338 views

01 Jan 0001

Hi Michelle

Don't worry, there's no need to be confused. I would suggest that you concentrate on the cardio for now, but if you do have time available, then consider doing the weight training because it certainly may help you in the long term with keeping the weight off. My personal opinion is that cardio is the primary focus for someone wanting to lose weight. The only way you will be able to lift your metabolic rate, and therefore burn more energy including fat, is by doing regular cardio training. Weight training has its place, as I will explain, but the cardio is the vital aspect that needs to be there to kickstart weight loss.

So my advice is to keep going with the power walking, and keep the duration and the frequency exactly as they are at the moment. I think it's all on track in that regard.

now, with regards to weight training, it is important because lean muscle has a naturally higher metabolic rate than fat does. So, if you can increase your lean muscle mass (by weight training) then the idea is that you will also increase the metabolic rate, which means that you will, even at rest, be able to burn more energy. Hence, you will be able to keep weight off. So, that is where it fits in. However, the most important thing is to get started and to actually lose weight, you must be doing cardio training - the increase you get in metabolic rate during a 30 minute bout of cardio (and for the few hours after) far outweighs the weight training increases, and so if it's weight loss you are after, then cardio is the way to go. Once you have achieved weight loss, or you are still busy achieving it, then the weight training becomes important to sustain it.

Hope this helps
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