Build Muscle to Burn Fat – Why You Need To Get Stronger to Get Leaner…

Are you getting on that treadmill everyday or pounding the pavements each morning in a desperate attempt to lose all your jiggly bits. Along with this torturous exercise are you drastically cutting your calorie intake in a bid to lose that all the excess weight. If this describes you then stop the craziness now, as it is likely to only result in lowering your metabolism and you just becoming skinny fat…

Build muscle to burn fat

Build Muscle to Burn Fat

There is a much easier and efficient way to get that lean body you dream of and that is simply by participating in a regular structured weight training program, that is designed to help you become a stronger female.

Cardio work can burn more calories than strength training whilst you are actually doing the exercise, however several studies have shown that those who build muscle continue to burn more calories for at least the next 24 to 36 hours afterwards.

Doing cardio

Yes, if you want to lose some of the excess fat from your body then forget spending hours doing cardio work because it is time to start hitting the weights instead.

And forget the old myth that cardio makes you lose weight and makes you look slim whilst weight training makes you big and bulky and packs on the pounds. The scales may well go up a bit when you start to regularly strength train but if you have read my article ‘Losing Body Fat vs. Losing Weight’ you will already know which one is the most important and why…

scales and tape measure

A regular strength training routine has been shown that it is by far the best way to get a leaner compact version of you and in a shorter time frame. So if want to get lean then you need to start training to build more muscle in order to help your body burn that excess fat.

Nutrition

The right nutrition plays a very important role in changing your body shape and it is essential to make sure that you are getting enough quality calories everyday, especially if you want to build more muscle.

If you are not eating enough food your body can go into survival mode, which means not only will you struggle to complete your workouts but you will feel tired and lethargic all day too.

Also not eating enough can effect the quality of your sleep at night which can greatly effect your gains. Muscle repair and building takes place when you are resting and sleeping and this won’t happen if you are not giving your body enough of the nutrition to do it.

It is also important that you eat plenty of the right types of food when you are working out to ensure that your body has enough of the necessary nutrients to facilitate their growth.

Food sources that are lean protein, carbohydrates and good fats are all essential to help your body get the required energy and fuel the muscles as they continue to grow.

It can often be hard to try to eat enough ‘clean food’ as it fills you up more quickly than junk food. It is also very likely you will find that you actually should be eating a lot more calories than you currently are in order to get the results that you want.

It is well worth looking at getting one of the many free fitness and nutrition apps that are available to download, so that you can accurately calculate just how many calories you need.

preparing avocado and salad items

Other Strength Training Benefits

A regular strength training program has many other great benefits as well as just making you a lot stronger and look more toned.

When you have more muscle mass it will also increase your metabolic rate and your body will burn more calories even when you are not exercising, so as long as you are not over doing it on your calorie intake you will lower your fat percentage.

Bones strength

It can help increase the strength and density of your bones which naturally gradually decline as we get older. This is especially important for females who can lose bone density more quickly as they age and are therefore at a greater risk of getting osteoporosis.

Posture

Poor posture is a common problem, especially for those who sit at a desk all day. A strength training program can not only improve your overall posture but also increase your balance and mobility too. These benefits can reduce your risk of injury when doing things in your daily life as well as prevent lower back pain.

Prevention of Diabetes

It can help prevent diabetes as it can lower your blood sugar and improve the way your body reacts to insulin.

Help with Arthritis

Regular weight training can also help those with arthritis as it not only strengthens and helps stabilize the joints but can help alleviate pain and stiffness too.

Improved Sleep

It can help with insomnia and drastically help improve the quality of your nights sleep.

Body Shape

If you have a regular structured strength training program along with the correct nutrition you can even totally reshape your body.

Psychological Benefits

Not only that but it is a great way to enhance your everyday mood and is an awesome stress buster, plus it can also build your self confidence, perceived body image and overall self-esteem.

girl at weights rack

Getting Started

It is a good idea to start off by just doing some compound exercises; these are a multi-joint type of exercise that work more than one muscle group at the same time.

These are a great effective way to way to improve your overall movement whilst targeting more muscles in a short amount of time. They also elevate your heart rate and therefore also give you some cardiovascular benefits, as well as burning more calories whilst you are doing them.

Some great exercises to start off with are Squats, Lunges, Bench Press, Push ups, Pull ups, Lat Pull downs, Bent over rowing and Planks.

female doing pull-ups

Start off with a lower weight just while you practice the movement and get the correct form, but once you have perfected that then gradually start increasing how much weight you lift as the weeks go on.

Finally make sure you stretch properly after your workout to help your muscles recover and try to get a post exercise meal as soon as possible to refuel your body.

Also take at least one day a week off training to properly rest and recuperate and let your muscles grow.

So if you haven’t already ditch the long hours of cardio and start picking up the weights and NO I don’t mean those pretty little pink ones!!!

If you have any questions or comments then please do leave them below as I’d love to hear from you…

Happy Training 🙂

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10 Responses

  1. Brenda says:

    I have recently started going to the gym for weight loss but you are so right about strength training too. I have watched some people who have lost weight on youtube and a lot of them say that they have loose skin that they are unhappy with because they lost the weight, but gained no muscle. And that is the last thing I want. I am glad to know that strength training is also important when it comes to weight loss and you explained it in a way that was understandable. And thanks for all the exercise tips you added, I think I am going to start off with squats and lunges until I get used to it, and then i will get started on weights. I can’t wait to get started on this journey, thanks for such great info.

    • Emma says:

      Hi Brenda,

      Thanks for leaving a comment, I’m really pleased you liked the article and found it useful.

      Yes, strength training is important when it comes to weight loss, if you are going to start by doing body weight exercises and in particular squats and lunges why not have a read of my article on building the perfect bootie too!

  2. Jeff Anderson says:

    Is this also applicable to a thin guy like me or this is for women alone? Great article by the way.

    • Emma says:

      Hi Jeff,
      Great to see I have a male reader who likes my article!
      Yes even though I write for my female readers, the same principles mostly apply for thin guys too. 🙂
      If you want to change your body then yes you need to start on a regular strength training program and eat the right amount of nutritional calories.
      If you are new to strength training you might want to also have a read my article about compound exercises too.
      Thanks for stopping by to comment 🙂

  3. Linda says:

    I’m glad you care about health and fitness. However, I wonder what it is I need to care about nutrients and exercise. Sometimes I believe it’s just laziness. However, I also believe it’s lack of motivation. We have a stair-master at home and I don’t even use it. However, last weekend I got invited to do water aerobics and it was fun. I have a question though. Is there such thing as a skinny obese female? Is it true that one doesn’t necessarily need to be overweight to have an unhealthy metabolism?

    • Emma says:

      Hi Linda,

      Thanks for the comment, 

      Firstly it is important that you find a fitness activity that you enjoy if you want to keep yourself motivated to regularly do it.

      Also yes you can be a ‘skinny fat’ female that is not necessarily overweight but carries fat in the wrong areas, normally around the belly. By going on constant fad diets where you drastically reduce your calorie intake in a bid to lose weight you will mess up your metabolic rate . Actually losing body fat is a lot more important than just losing body weight.

  4. Rosa says:

    Hi Emma,

    I enjoyed your article. I have read elsewhere before that it’s important to workout by gaining muscle mass and that this also helps to increase your metabolism which you also explained here. This makes sense. When I used my treadmill a while back it seemed to me that I was losing a little on my breast which I did not want that to happen.

    I’m going to keep this in mind. And I will be using some exercise methods you mentioned like squats and lunges. Thanks for the information you posted.

    • Emma says:

      Hi Rosa,

      So pleased that you enjoyed the article and thanks for leaving a comment.

       If you were doing a lot of cardio then it was very likely that you were losing weight and unfortunately a lot of us lose it from the chest when we don’t really want to. Good to hear that you will be starting to do some of the exercises I mentioned like squats and lunges but if you also do exercises that work the chest you can actually enhance that area too! 

      Why not have a read of my article on compound exercises to see some great options for you too 🙂

  5. Katie says:

    The one thing that by far made the difference for me is my diet. I am somewhat active, do yoga twice a week and usually a long hike on the weekends. But I’ve found that if I’m eating too much sugar and grains my body will hold onto weight no matter how much I exercise. And yes, weight lifting helps too!

    • Emma says:

      Hi Katie,

      Thanks for your comment, 

      Yes, diet does play a major factor in fat loss and most people do need to cut their carbohydrates and especially the amount of sugar that they consume. That is why it is important to know the percentage of each of the Macronutrients that you are getting.

      The exercise that you are doing is great and if you incorporate some strength training as well then you will have an increase in muscle which will boost your metabolism and as well. 

      Keep up the great work!

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