Can You Lose Fat by Lifting Weights?

Last Updated: November 29, 2020
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The Home Gym Review Squad

Exercise is the best way to lose fat, and there are many forms of exercise that are pretty effective. Weightlifting in particular has lots of physical and emotional benefits. If you like repetitive workouts, you can consider lifting weights. But can you lose fat by lifting weights alone? 

In this post, we are going to answer this question. Here you will also learn some other important things about lifting weights. 

How Effective Is It?

According to a paper published by Harvard Health, a vigorous 30-minute session of strength training can burn only 223 calories. That means, if you only take the weight loss aspect into consideration, weightlifting is not the best form of work out. However, there are many other benefits of weightlifting. 

It is important to remember that any form of exercise is helpful for weight loss. However, some experts say that weightlifting has an edge over other forms of exercise, especially when it comes to weight loss. 

This exercise helps you lose fat and build muscle. Theoretically, fat tissue is metabolically less active than muscle tissue. Building more muscles is related to losing more calories. 

Just remember that for weight loss, weightlifting is far from a magic ticket. No matter how much you work out, you will still have to sustain a calorie deficit. To be able to lose weight, you must eat fewer calories than you burn. 

Weightlifting to Lose Weight

Can you lose fat by lifting weights? Yes, you can, but you must have the right approach. In practice, weight loss is not easy. But your success in weight loss comes down to a very simple fact: just consume fewer calories than you burn. About 3500 calories come from one Pound of fat. That means you can lose one pound per week if you can burn 500 calories per day. 

There is a great advantage of the weightlifting workout: your body keeps on burning calories long after you have stopped your workout. Weightlifting makes your muscle mass lean and that speeds up the resting metabolism. 

Cardio can burn calories but that happens only at the moment. On the other hand, weightlifting works in a slightly different way. It has after-burn benefits, which is really great. Weightlifting helps you to burn muscle and water in addition to fat.

What Should You Do First: Cardio or Weight Lifting?

Your goals should determine it. If your main goal is to get stronger and build muscles, you should probably lift weights first. And if your main goal is to build endurance or speed, do cardio first. 

The right answer to this question also depends on some other factors. Most people have a balanced approach to both cardio and weightlifting. However, it is not necessary to do both in a single session. 

In a one-hour weightlifting session, you will not burn as many calories as you would do in a one-hour cardio session. But in the long run, you will end up burning more calories because weightlifting has an after-effect.

Heavy Weights or Light Weights?

It also depends on your personal goals. If you do not have any specific goal, heavy lifting is not necessarily better than light lifting. For example, if you have a plan to take part in a powerlifting competition, you should certainly do the heavy lifting. 

Light lifting is probably better for you if you are planning to run a marathon. Here the main point is to do lots of repetitions and get your heart rate up so that you can later handle stress more efficiently. Without any specific goal, you should probably do both light lifting and heavy lifting. 

No fancy equipment is needed for this workout. Just find an adjustable dumbbell set and get started. Soon you will fall in love with this form of exercise.

Fat Weighs Less Than Muscle

According to a paper published by the Social and Health Research Centre, fat is not as dense as muscle. Muscle takes up less space because it is heavier by volume. Think about it this way: a pound of feathers weighs the same as a Pound of iron.

But a Pound of feathers takes up a lot more space. If you compare the volume of muscle with that of fat, there is not really a very big difference. However, a bulky man certainly has to wear larger clothing. 

Can you lose fat by lifting weights? Yes, but before you start lifting weights, you should make an effort to learn how it actually works. Here is another important thing to remember: fat cannot be turned into muscle. You can do weight lifting to build muscle and burn fat but they are not the same process. When you lose a Pound of muscle, you cannot replace it with a Pound of fat. 

Go Hard, Burn More

In order to see results, it is important to lift weights intensely for an extended period of time. The intensity of your workouts is more important than the frequency of your sessions. In other words, the harder you go the more calories you burn. 

Make sure you lift weights 3 to 5 days a week. Besides that, you should engage in some aerobic activities. A well-rounded workout plan can be highly effective. Your body should be challenged in new ways. Doing it in the same way every single day can be boring. 

Try HIIT or Circuit Training

Combine cardiovascular exercise with weightlifting to burn more calories. A HIIT routine involves repetitions of wearing recovery periods and intense efforts. Make sure the duration of your circuit training routine is at least 20 minutes. If you weigh 125 pounds, weightlifting can help you burn 240 calories in just half an hour, according to a report published by Harvard Health. 

Pay Attention to Your Diet

Losing weight is extremely hard only if you rely on weightlifting. It is more about what you eat. Remember, controlling your diet is more important than lifting weights or any form of physical exercise. 

Let’s address the question again: can you lose fat by lifting weights? It comes down to the basic rule: you have to burn more calories than you consume. At the same time, it is important to be moderate in your attempt, because drastic weight loss can have dangerous effects on your overall health. The key is to lose fat safely, avoiding negative health consequences.

You could also read about weighted abs workouts to do at home

Can You Lose Fat by Lifting Weights – Conclusion

Can you lose fat by lifting weights? Yes, you can. Besides, lifting weights can give you a self-esteem boost. Your physical and emotional strength will manifest in your attitude. Thus, your workout will have a positive effect on your attitude to life. This form of workout can literally empower you.

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