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Avoiding Weight Gain After Taking It Off

A Solution to Weight Regain Through Increasing Muscle Mass & High Intensity Training

There is one absolute, most important factor in any sustainable weight loss program.  It goes beyond simply burring off calories through cardiovascular exercise and lowering calorie intake, but rather focusing instead on increasing overall muscle mass. Increasing muscle mass means a higher resting metabolic rate, which allows for calorie intake to stay higher and within more practical limits for the average person.  Many studies confirm the role of resistance training; it preserves muscle mass during diet controlled weight loss and a simultaneous increase in overall fat loss as a result.  If a person's resting metabolic rate account for over 70% of their daily energy expenditure and is determined by that person's fat free muscle mass, it only makes sense that attempts to lose weight through practices that can decrease muscle mass is inevitably counterproductive.

On the other hand, increases in fat free muscle mass from weight training lead to higher resting metabolic rates. Which, when combined with the added calories burned during resistance training and from excess post exercise oxygen consumption, can gradually and permanently decrease body fat levels when used in conjunction with muscle promoting high protein diets that are not overly hypocaloric.

Aerobic Exercise Vs Resistance Exercise For Long Term Weight Loss

aerobic exercise does not prevent weight regain

Aerobic exercise can decrease body weight, althouh it comes at the expense of maintaining muscle mass and thus does not prevent the you from regaining the weight again.

People have always been skeptical  rowards the use of exercise for muscle building as a main tool for weight loss.  Aerobic exercise is typically what we associate with shedding body fat, even though many studies find high intensity weight training to be more efficient than the conventional aerobic exercise for reducing fat mass. Aerobic exercise can indeed reduce fat mass, but has very little effect if any on the preservation of fat free mass. Not only does this increase the possibility of weight regain, but from a cosmetic point of view, diet induced weight loss using such forms of exercise would result in a smaller, but still flabby version of what you started out with if resistance exercise is not included in your regime. Following aerobic exercise, there is a miniscule increase in calorie expenditure for up to 48 hours after the exercise, but only if this exercise is done with a vertain degree of intensity and at a long duration. This seems like a relatively large window, however there is not an increase in resting metabolic rates.  On the other hand, increases in a person's muscle mass permanently increase thier resting metabolic rates, and the state of the after burn effect of high intensity training from excess post exercise oxygen consumption is also greater than that of aerobic exercise. 

The other factor that favors high intensity resistance training for long term weight loss without weight regain is the use of a high protein diet designed to increase muscle mass. Studies have shown that a high protein intake of 18% or more of total energy intakes limits weight regain in those who have lost weight.[28] Diet induced thermogenesis accounts for about 10% of energy expenditure and high protein foods not only have a high thermogenic and muscle sparing effect, but also promote higher satiety levels after consumption which can limit excessive calorie intake.

A reduction in body fat through high intensity resistance training doesn't yield the quick drops on the bathroom scale that would be seen from a higher volume of aerobic exercise with a low calorie diet, which in itself is a good thing as you don’t lose muscle mass in the process. However it does provide a long term solution for those needing to lose weight with the added benefits of increased strength and improved self esteem thanks to increased lean muscle mass. Muscle mass that is key to the development of the lean, toned and tight body that is without question the Holy Grail of our time. A look that is unattainable from high levels of aerobics and or low calorie intakes, as such activities have little effect on the increased development of skeletal muscle and from what we know can predispose you to regaining the weight you worked so hard to lose. 

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