You may think that any weight loss is healthy, but that is not always the case. The truth is that often times when individuals lose weight through diet restriction alone, one quarter of the weight loss can come from muscle loss which slows your metabolism. Because of this, we want to focus on fat loss and muscle gain.
Muscle plays a vital role in metabolism, bone strength, aging and weight control. Muscle also helps you burn calories, even after a workout. This is why strength training, and not just cardio, is a great tool when trying to lose fat. After age 35, you start to lose an average of 5% of muscle mass every 10 years unless you are actively working to maintain and build muscle.
How Do You Build Muscle?
Believe it or not, power lifting isn’t the only way to build muscle. You can aid in muscle gain through strength training as well as through your diet. You want to make sure you’re eating enough protein. Focus on high protein food such as eggs, quinoa, lean chicken breast, beans and low fat yogurt.
The main way to build muscle is through strength training. it can be done in many forms and environments such as:
- Personal training sessions
- Group fitness classes
- At home workouts
Start exploring your options and brainstorm a plan for how you want to incorporate some level of strength training in your life. Some people enjoy classes or personal trainers because of the sense of accountability, while others like the comfort of exercising in their home. Think of a type of exercise that sounds appealing to you. If you enjoy what you’re doing, you’ll be more likely to stick with that routine!