It’s the age-old question. Which is better for losing weight: strength training or cardio? Yes, you technically burn more calories during a cardio workout. It’s estimated that you burn 10 to 12 calories per minute running or cycling compared to 8 to 10 calories per minute using weights. However, with strength training, you not only burn calories during your session, you keep burning calories after your workout.
The formula basically looks like this:
Strength training = increased lean muscle mass = higher metabolic rate = more calories burned per day.
With strength training, you get the benefit of an “after-burn” of about 25%. (For every 100 calories burned during your session, you’re actually burning about 125.) That could be conservative, too. A study in the International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Metabolism found that a woman’s metabolic rate spiked for 16 hours after a strength training session.
Why? Your muscle mass determines your metabolic rate – or how many calories you can burn. When you challenge your muscles with resistance and weights, you cause microscopic tears in the fibers inside the muscle. They respond by fusing together, which increases the mass and strength of the muscle. That process needs energy and the body turns to stored fat to feed the muscles.
When you build muscle, you boost your basal metabolic rate (BMR), which increases the amount of calories your body burns per day. The more muscle you have, the more energy (e.g., calories) your body uses up doing anything from breathing to checking your social media feed to binging Netflix.
- Maximize the effect by using more resistance, the X-Force Body way. Our patented machines stack the weight on the lowering part, which increases the intensity of muscle exertion during each rep by 40%. Scientific studies show that women who increased the weight load burned nearly twice as many calories in the two hours after their workout as those who did more reps with lighter weights.
- Incorporate more muscles in one workout to be even more efficient! Think of all the muscles involved in a squat or a rowing-type motion.
- Spend less time working out, more time relaxing. When you’re burning calories all the time, you don’t have to put in hours of work. Just two, 30-minute sessions a week with X-Force Body gets the results of three or five hour-long sessions.
- Strength training really engages your core, so you get an ab workout without trying. It’s great for burning belly fat. A stronger core also means better posture and better form in other sports.
- Stronger bones. Every time a muscle contracts, it interacts with the bone it’s attached to. The cells in the bone react by moving more minerals into the bone and building structural proteins, thereby strengthening it.
- Stronger joints too, by strengthening the muscles the surround and support your joints.
- A lower injury rate than cardio exercises, due to building a strong core, strong bones and increased flexibility.
- Better heart health. A March 2019 study in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise revealed that those who did one hour of strength training per week (just like X-Force Body recommends) had a 40-70% lower risk of heart attacks and strokes. Lifting longer than one hour per week was not associated with any additional benefits.
- A 2017 study in Mayo Clinic Proceedings said one hour of strength training is also associated with a 17% lower risk of developing high blood pressure, high blood sugar, high cholesterol and other risk factors that lead to heart disease and diabetes.
- For every three pounds of muscle you add with strength training, you’ll burn an extra 120 calories per day just doing nothing. The higher your percentage of muscle mass, the more calories you burn at rest.
It all makes sense when you come in and see how X-Force Body strength training can change your body, so it burns more calories. It means less overall body fat and improved blood flow for better overall health.
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"I feel stronger. I sleep better. My eating habits have completely changed. I have a lot of energy. I was also taking thyroid medications when I started. Since then, I'm down to half of the medications I was taking." *Maria Torri, Palm Harbor
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Who’s X-Force Body?
Busy people don’t have time to waste on exercise that doesn’t work. At X-Force Body, our mission is to inspire you to become leaner, stronger and healthier so you can live your best life. We deliver 30-minute strength workouts, twice per week with an expert coach. We will help you look and feel your best in a fraction of the time.
We are driven to help others create the freedom to be who they want to be, while becoming healthier, happier and more confident. Learn More.
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