Diet: Exercise – One Final Reason

Sigh.  You’re still not on board with the muscle thing, are you?

Patrick Stewart is so disappointed in you.

Look, I can understand why you might be hesitant about lifting weights or flipping over a big tire or doing a chin-up.  Most weight lifting/strength training is either associated with bodybuilders (which, I agree, seems down right bizarre and utterly frightening sometimes.  I mean, look at this guy –

I really wish I could say this was photoshopped.

– yeah, it’s impressive.  It’s also fucking scary), or athletes/models/action movie stars –

He may have a nice body, but I bet he's ugly as sin. Why else would they crop off his head?

– which, while being very pleasing, isn’t exactly practical for most of the human population (those people were either born with some incredibly good genetics, or they just work out almost all day).  You’re not trying to be some kinda meat monster, and you have enough problems dealing with the unrealistic body image issues that the latter group invokes in society, let alone trying to look like them.  You want to lose weight and be healthier, not be the shining example of supreme fitness and muscle tone.   I dig it.

Literally.

But I’m not trying to reshape your body to be more pleasing to the eye, nor is it my goal to have you be able to pull a semi with your teeth.  I don’t care if your body meets up with society’s standards.  What I care about is your health, both physical and mental, and I know that if you have been a big person for most of your life your weight is a key factor in both of those arenas.  I know that if you can lose the weight, you’ll live longer and feel better about yourself.  So I’m going to bottom line this shit.

BUILDING MUSCLE MAKES YOU LOSE WEIGHT

It may not seem like it, but it does, and a lot.  Aerobics are still going to be your main avenue on the weight-loss journey as you need to build up your endurance more than anything else at first.  But after your endurance is up, you will need to start doing more and more muscle work, and here’s why:

When you exercise, you boost your metabolism.  The harder you work out, the higher your metabolism goes and the more stored energy you burn.  When you finish an aerobic exercise, your metabolism is going to stay boosted for about 20 minutes.  It takes a little while for your heart rate to return to normal and if you exercised vigorously your body is going to be working in overdrive to replenish the energy you used up.  Twenty minutes, and then your heart rate gets on the square away again and you body isn’t as starved for calories as it was, and thus your metabolism returns to its ordinary setting.

But with weight/strength training, your metabolism stays up for the entire day.  THE.  ENTIRE.  DAY.  If you lift some weights for half an hour in the morning before going to work, then your metabolism is going to burn hotter while you’re driving to work, typing up them sick spreadsheets, taking a break one too many, and all the way until you get home for dinner.  This is because, while your heart rate can return to normal fairly quickly, it takes at least a day for your muscles to return to normal after a work out.  A full day in which your metabolism will be working harder to get the energy your muscles need.

That’s it.  If all my talk about how it makes you healthier hasn’t sunk in, then just focus on this – If you want to lose some serious weight, if you want to change your body chemistry so that you keep off what weight you lose, weight training is one of the most important things you can do.  BUILDING MUSCLES MAKES YOU LOSE WEIGHT AND KEEP IT OFF.

Now don’t go picking up that dumbbell just yet.  While weight training is important, it can also be a lot more dangerous and correct form is crucial in your ongoing safety.  Also, there are more options to this than just lifting weights, so there might be something that is better suited for you.  I’ll go over all of that soon enough.  But I don’t want to hear any more of this, “But I don’t wanna”, bullshit.  If you say that, you’re gonna get smacked.How did that feel?Not very good, yeah?That not me that’s slapping you.  That’s the “Fat Voice” in your head; the one that tells you you’re not worth a damn.  The one that says you’re not worth the effort of losing weight.  The one that wants to keep you fat.  Every time you make a bullshit excuse to not work out or eat right, that Fat Voice is going to –– you.  And let’s not pretend; its slapping you down.  Down into depression, insecurity and shame.  But I’m here to help in every way I can, to help you find the tools to fight the Fat Voice, because that motherfucker does not get to win.

The struggle against weight loss is about conquering your barriers, and that’s going to take a lot of effort.  But you know what?  You’re worth it.

That last one was from me.  It kinda looked like fun.  It totally was, too.  But I’m really sorry.  If you want to, to be fair, you can go ahead and –Ow.

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