Weight training is a powerful activity for losing weight while maintaining muscle mass. Like any exercise, however, it should be approached in a way that matches your circumstances and goals. There are plenty of options for those using weight training to get in shape. Here’s how to use weight training in combination with free weight loss programs to achieve awesome results.
Free Weights or Machines?
Both of these options have staunch supporters, but each actually has specific strengths and weaknesses. Free weights are often the best option for those without pre-existing injuries who want to build the most muscle in the long term. In addition, free weights ensure optimal growth of supporting muscles that help prevent future injuries. Machines offer less risk of exercise-induced injury and are convenient for fast workouts, but their cost makes them less ideal than free weights for home gyms.
Work Out at Home or at the Gym?
Many free weight loss plans can be accomplished at home with the right equipment, and the home environment is appealing for those who are short on time but not lacking funds for free weights or machines. However, a gym membership includes access to trainers, commercial-quality equipment and social motivation from working out with others. Many people also find that they have an easier time meeting weight loss goals at a gym, away from the distractions of home.
Getting Enough Rest
Weight training increases metabolism and tells the muscles to grow, but rest is essential to prevent injury and maximize muscle growth. It’s important to avoid working the same muscle more than once a week for this reason. By lifting weights three times per week and focusing on cardiovascular exercise on the other days, weight loss results can be boosted significantly.
Weight Training Nutrition
Eating enough calories is important for gaining muscle, but weight training can also help maintain more muscle while on a slight calorie deficit. High-protein foods and supplemental shakes help fuel muscle growth. However, carbohydrates are used by the muscles for energy and should not be neglected. Finally, healthy fats are important for healthy testosterone, which stimulates muscle growth and fat loss.
By following a plan that matches the free weight loss program you select, you’ll get great results from your weight training. If you suffer injuries along the way, take time off from the weights to support future success. Finally, track and reward your results to stay focused and achieve your fitness goals.