This is perhaps the ultimate reality check.
Just doing cardio isn’t going to get you the weight loss results you want.
A common misconception is that the “lean” look is acquired by doing more cardio and less strength. Sure, “more cardio” will help you lose fat, but you’ll also be losing muscle. Without anaerobic and strength training, your body burns fat AND muscle, resulting in a slower metabolism. With even more cardio, you’ll gain fat faster now that you don’t have the muscle mass to burn the extra calories, resulting in the “skinny fat” look.
In a nutshell? Don’t forget strength training! I’ve created a beginner’s guide to strength training to help you guys out.
Pilates is a great form of strength training. Feel the burn!
How Strength Training Helped Me
I lost my first 10lbs from just doing cardio and minimal strength training, probably once a week every other week. But I really saw results when I did consistent strength training 2x a week EVERY week. I really like what I see in the mirror, and it’s a LASTING change. Maintenance is so much easier because I’m burning additional calories just by sitting on the couch.
So 2 days a week, every week, do strength training. You will see results. Building muscle is KEY! And you won’t bulk up from two days a week. Trust me. These guns aren’t going to be visiting a gun show anytime soon. (But that’s also because I’m pear shaped, and building muscle in my upper body is difficult. Read more about body shapes here!)
How to Get Started
- Read my beginner’s guide to strength training
- Try out my 30 Day Youtube Workout Calendar! It is the perfect blend of strength and HIIT cardio to burn fat and build lean muscle.
- Not a beginner, but looking for some great strength workouts? I’m going to recommend to you a program I used: P90x.
Good luck. Don’t fear the weights! They will help you reach your goals.