Lifestyle Family Fitness

Importance of Resistance Training for Weight Loss

by Brian Swartz, CPT

All too often I see members walk right past all of our beautiful resistance training equipment, only to use our cardiovascular oriented equipment such as our treadmills and elliptical units.

The most common Fitness goal today is weight loss, hands down. Cardio is excellent; it burns calories and is great for your heart, circulation, energy levels, and much more. However, if you want to shed body fat you need to resistance train, also.

Muscle work, with resistance, burns a boat load of calories. Even after you leave the Fitness center, the body is still burning calories at a higher rate because the muscles have to recover! Exercise post-oxygen consumption (EPOC) remains at a much higher rate for several hours after an intense weight training session. All this means is that your metabolic rate (how many calories your body burns off) stays elevated for sometimes as much as 48 hours after your session!

This means more calories burned, hence, more weight loss.

For all of the biochemical and physiological adaptations the muscles go through in order to regenerate back to homeostasis could take up to 72 hours! Yes, this means that we are burning extra calories for days after a resistance training session.

Think about what would happen if you were involved in a resistance training program 3 or 4 days a week. The more muscle you have, the easier it is to lose weight. Each pound of muscle burns an additional 50 calories per day, roughly.

Do not worry about bulking up, as you need to have a surplus of calories for this to happen. If you take in more calories than you burn, your body will respond by increasing in size, whether it be lean muscle or adipose tissue (fat). This is grounds for another article.

Here is the deal. Incorporate resistance training into your visits to the fitness center, and you will see a huge difference in your results. For more information, stop by your local Lifestyle Family Fitness Center and seek the guidance of any Lifestyle Certified Personal Trainer.


Brian Swartz is an ACSM certified Personal Trainer at Lifestyle Family Fitness.

Gulf Coast Family Publications - Encouraging families along the Gulf Coast in Pinellas County