Choosing which diet to follow or which clothes to wear might be easy but choosing how many times to go to the gym might be a bit more difficult. If you are new to fitness and dieting you may still not realise how the whole losing weight process works. In a nutshell weight loss occurs when one decides to eat healthy and be active on a daily basis.
For those wanting more details, weight loss occurs when you artificially create a caloric deficit. Your caloric expenditure on a daily basis needs to be larger than the caloric intake on a daily basis.
The bodily functions that are covered by the umbrella term of metabolic rate burn calories to keep your body healthy and properly functioning. Of course calories are also burnt when one performs activities, however the amount of calories one burns will hugely depend on your weight, type of activity, intensity and also duration of the activity. Just to give you an example, a 10 minute walk will not burn as much calories as a 20 minute moderate jog.
All exercises can be roughly divided into two categories, namely cardio exercises and strength training. Cardio is the basic component of any weight loss programme. Running, cycling, jumping use all of your muscles which in turn causes your body to burn an enormous amount of calories.
An additional benefit of cardio exercises is that they will help you gain muscle endurance and they will also better your muscle and lung functions. The American college of sports medicine recommended in a study that they undertook that all healthy adults should do 30 minuntes of moderate cardio, five times a week.
On the other side we have strength training also called weight training. These exercises will help you build more muscle tissue and it will also improve your body composition.
These exercises are usually done with equipment such as weighted machines, barbells, dumbbells, etc. For the inexperienced this may seem as a bad way of losing weight but it is quite the opposite, weight training can be very beneficial for those willing to lose weight. This is cognizant with the fact that muscle tissue burns more calories than body fat does
Again in the same research done by the American college of sports medicine the conclusion was that healthy adults should perform 12 repetitions of 8 to 10 strength exercises two times per week.
One should take this research done by the American college of sports medicine with a grain of salt since all of us have varying goals and different bodies that have different metabolisms. The frequency of your training, be it cardio or weight training, is variable and should not be fixed.
If lifting weight to build muscle mass the intensity and the number of repetitions will vary, the goal is to increase steadily the intensity level of your exercises. This lies in the fact that our bodies are very adaptable machines, this means that we will adapt to the same level of intensity and there will be no resistance and no new muscles will grow. If someone lifts weights three times a week for a whole year, but doesn’t increase his or her intensity level when it comes to the weight lifting exercises, he or she will more than likely be unable to change their bodily composition (except if you use steroids).
An effective training must include a change of intensity, varying sometimes between high and low intensity to create the optimal challenge for our body for which we will be rewarded with more muscle mass.
Also a thing to keep in mind is that our bodies need time to rest, therefore we might encounter a situation when we will be unable to lift the weight or perform an exercise which we previously performed without any additional effort. This is a sure sign that we are overworked and that we need to rest before we continue our workout routine. Basically what this means is that the more weight we lift the more time we need to allocate to our recovery period.
All in all a good diet plan is a must when it comes to building a healthy body also the amount of exercise will vary depending on your goal and overall fitness.
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