Building muscle mass may cause temporary weight gain, you may lose weight over the long-term. Before you make any changes to your exercise routine, consult your doctor.
The idea that muscle weighs more than fat is a common misconception. One pound of muscle weighs the same as 1 lb. of fat, but muscle and fat differ in volume. One pound of fat takes up more room in the body than 1 lb. of muscle. This does not necessarily mean you’ll gain weight when you build muscle mass. If you lose fat and develop lean muscle mass, the scale will likely go down.
Muscle burns more calories than fat, which can help you lose weight. This is the reason that exercise programs recommend including strength training in your workouts. Spend at least three days a week participating in strength-building exercises. You may use resistance exercise machines, such as pull-up bars, leg presses, ab exercisers and bicep curlers. If you are new to weight training, use a small weight and large number of reps. As you advance, increase weight and decrease number of reps.
Body Fat Decrease
If you have gained muscle, your body composition may have improved, even if you did not lose weight. A pound of muscle may weigh the same as a pound of fat, but the muscle takes up less room in your body. In other words, if you build seven pounds of muscle during the same time you lose seven pounds of fat, your scale would not budge, but your measurements would decrease. Consider measuring your waist circumference or the circumference of other body parts to monitor your weight loss instead of relying on the scale. As your measurements decrease and you carry less fat, you decrease your chances of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, heart disease and joint injuries.
Weight loss requires you to create a calorie deficit between the number of calories you take into your body and the number of calories your body uses. If you do not create a calorie deficit, you will not lose weight. Gaining muscle mass does increase your body’s need for calories, but if this need does not exceed your intake, you cannot lose weight. Increase your weight-loss potential while gaining muscle by decreasing the number of calories you consume and increasing the number of calories you use with exercise.
A reduced-calorie diet can help you lose weight without leaving you hungry, if you make the right dietary changes. The University of Michigan Health System reports that people who have lost weight successfully eat more snacks of high nutritional value and eat breakfast on a regular basis. When you increase the nutritional value of the foods you eat, you typically decrease your calorie consumption, while allowing yourself to eat more food. Focus on consuming a diet full of fiber, whole grains and lean protein to keep nutrient consumption high while keeping your fat and calorie consumption low.
Weight training builds muscle quickly but does not burn as many calories as cardiovascular exercise. Consider adding 30 minutes a day of cardio exercise into your weight-lifting schedule. The higher the intensity of the exercise, the more calories it burns. Common exercises that burn high amounts of calories include jumping rope, rollerblading, running, and active sports such as basketball and football.
Article originally posted by: Kimberly Wonderly, Demand Media