The relationship between strength training, weight loss, & metabolism

Strength Training, Weight Loss, and Metabolism. How do those three words relate? I think it is a pretty good guess if I were to say each of us has tried to lose weight or thought about it.  We play with diet changes, workout fads, maybe even supplements but when it comes down to it calories in versus calories out is how we lose and gain weight.  But, we can help the process of weight loss occur and help to ward of gradual weight gain that happens because of metabolism changes as we age. A few weeks ago I was doing some continuing education and the webinar I was listening to was all about strength training and its effect on weight loss and they had some interesting statistics that have stuck with me.

  • On average our metabolism slows gradually as we age leading to 5-7 pounds of weight gain every decade after the age of 20.
  • Women have an average of 5lbs of muscle loss per decade when no strength training occurs.
  • Strength training an average of 3x/week on a regular basis at a moderate intensity for 20-30 minutes increases your RMR (resting metabolic rate) 5-7%, that's approximately 110-120 calories a day.
  • Strength training reduces fat mass.
  • Strength training gives you an increased metabolic rate that lasts 3 days post workout.
  • 70% of Americans are overweight or obese.
  • Fewer than 5% of the U.S. meet minimal exercise requirements.
  • 99% of people who use diet alone for weight loss, gain all of the weight they lost back within 6 months to 1 year.

The important take away from all of this information: We must strength train to lose weight and more importantly we must strength train to keep our resting metabolic rates up to maintain a healthy weight as age. And...as women we need to strength train to keep our muscle mass up and our bones strong! Oh and 1 more thing, ladies lifting weights will not make you get big!