First of all, let's clear one thing up. Exercise is not necessary to cause weight loss. Perfectly respectable reductions in body fat are possible without exercise. In fact, if you have a large amount of abdominal fat around your waist, only dietary change will remove it. Exercise won’t shift this as it is a symptom of the metabolic syndrome, which is caused by poor diet. If you want to remove that sort of fat you will have to improve the quality of your nutrition. More on that later.
Exercise Removes Subcutaneous Fat
However, exercise is good for shifting subcutaneous fat. That is the type of fat that resides under the surface of the skin. Its the ‘unsightly fat you can see’, the fat that stops your abdominal muscle showing through, the fat that wobbles when you run (*shudders*). But we can use exercise as a tool to get rid of this fat. However, be careful in your choice of exercise, as some forms are far superior to others for removing subcutaneous fat.
Endurance Training is Inefficient at Removing Subcutaneous Fat
The facts are in a studies show that endurance type training is inefficient at reducing subcutaneous fat. The reason for this is because when you exercise on the treadmill or hamster wheel, you burn only a very small number of calories. So you have to exercise for hours on end to get a benefit. For example an hour of non stop running burns just 100 calories (kcal). However, most people who want to lose weight make the mistake of performing hours of pointless cardio work for little gain.
Weight Loss Is All About Metabolic Rate
Forget cardio, weight loss is about raising your resting metabolic rate. You have a high resting metabolic rate, you become a fat burning machine, simple. Let’s do a quick calculation. The average man burns just under 2500 calories a day just resting. He therefore burns about 850 while he is asleep. Compare that to the 100 you burn from an hours running. Which would you rather do to lose weight? Do I have your attention?
Resistance Training is King of Fat Loss
Resistance training also burns very few calories when being performed. In fact it burns less that running. So what’s the point of resistance training them I hear you say? Well, resistance training increases muscle mass. And the more muscle you have the higher your resting metabolic rate. While an average 75 kg man might burn just under 2500 calories per day, the average 80 kg man will burn just over 2500 calories. You see where I am going with this?
Gain Weight to Lose Fat
Losing fat is a trade off. If you want to be lean, gain some weight in the form of muscle. Muscle burns fat for you while you sleep, with no effort on your part. That means you can eat more and not get fat. If you're a woman and worried that the muscle might make you look unsightly, don't. Five kilograms of muscle spread over your entire frame wouldn't even be noticeable. But it will burn a hell of a lot of fat. Now that’s my kind of weight loss.