Cardio for weight loss?

Here's some advice from Personal Trainer Laura

Should I only do cardio to ‘lose weight’?

Fitness Instructor and Personal Trainer Laura gives her top tips.

When trying to lose weight we all know how satisfying it is to see that number on the scales move down! But what is actually changing when our weight changes? There are many factors that make up weight such as body fat, muscle mass, hydration levels, etc. all of which can fluctuate.

As such, a much better way to record body fat loss is by taking measurements of your waist, hips and thighs.

Losing body fat requires a number of areas to be in order; the main ones being diet and exercise. To burn fat you need to create a negative energy balance, which basically means you want to be burning more calories than you are consuming.

Cardiovascular exercises are important to keep your heart healthy and strong but if you are looking to loose body fat you also want to add in weight sessions alongside your cardio.  Often people who are looking to loose body fat are frightened of using weights as they don’t want to build muscle and look like the ‘hulk’.  I can assure you this will not happen, it takes a long time with specific training regimes and a high protein/calorie diet to look like Mr. Incredible!  

Weight sessions will help you maintain or slightly increase your muscle mass. This is good as the more muscle you have the more energy you will burn every day! By keeping your metabolism higher you will burn more fat, even at rest!

The benefits of using weights in your sessions aren’t just restricted to losing body fat and toning muscles:

•    Your bone density will increase which will reduce the risk of fractures, broken bones and developing osteoporosis.
•    By having strong muscles your balance and ability to perform everyday tasks will improve.
•    The nervous system will function better thus improving co-ordination.
So the next time you are in the gym make sure you add in some weight bearing exercises and do these 2-3 times a week to help create a stronger, toned and healthier body.

Not sure where to start or need some help?  Ask one of our friendly instructors.