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There are a lot of differing (and often wrong) opinions and fads on the best way to approach your fitness goals. Many of these are perpetuated by people who heard it from someone else and not from scientific fact. Unfortunately, it is a long-held belief that just doing cardio is the best approach for weight loss. This seems to be even more prevalent with women. Per Craig Tyler, COO of NexGen Fitness and NSCA-CPT “There is often the misconception that weights are not meant for women, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Weight training will have as much effect on your overall appearance and physique as cardio and diet. It is an integral part of reaching your fitness goals!”

Would it shock you to know that very fit people didn’t obtain their bodies by simply running or hitting the stair climber? Contrary to popular belief, cardio isn’t necessarily the best way to burn calories and body fat, but in fact weight training has been proven to significantly increase overall effectiveness of your workouts. In fact, weight training has been shown to not only burn calories during the workout, but also lead to additional calorie burn after your workout is complete. There is a term known as EPOC or “excess post-exercise oxygen consumption” which simply means that your body requires extra calories that typically come from the breakdown of fat stores and free fatty acids moving into the blood stream and burning off. That’s the goal right, to burn off unwanted fat? This is the way to do it!

Additionally, with the increase in muscle mass from your weight training you should see an increase in your resting metabolic rate due to the fact that the human body requires more calories to maintain muscle mass than it does to maintain fat. This means that even while at rest your body is burning more calories than before.

So not only can we sculpt the body we want, but in fact there are a number of other benefits that come from weight training. Here are some other benefits that you can expect:

  • Lower blood pressure
  • Increased Bone Density
  • Stronger Joints, Ligaments and Tendons
  • Prevents Slowing Metabolism with Age
  • Improved Balance and Functional Movements
  • Stress Reduction

So, while in no way is NexGen Fitness trying to discourage people from participating in an efficient cardio regimen, it is vital that it is only one portion of your fitness program. Spending time doing weight training will provide benefits that cardio alone cannot. In order to maximize your fitness goals, you must have your cardio, weight training, and a nutritional program working together. So, drop the misconceptions about weight training and go get the body you want!