Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Did You Know Body Fat is Your Muscles Fuel of Choice at Rest?

In most gyms you will find the majority of the people on the cardio equipment in hope of losing weight and body fat.  They spend most of their time on the treadmills or the elliptical machines and very little time hitting the weights.  After several weeks of this they get frustrated because they see very little progress.  They just can't understand why they are working out so hard and can't seem to lose any body fat.

The answer to the above situation is they haven't built enough muscle to burn the body fat they want to get rid of.  Here's a fact you probably don't know about your body. Your muscles fuel of choice during most of the day is body fat.  That's right, your muscles prefer to burn fat as fuel when you are doing low intensity activities, and and also when you are at rest.  More specifically, the metabolism of fat furnishes about two-thirds of the energy your body requires at rest.

Even while you are asleep your muscles are active and they need fuel to survive.  Actually, you burn most of your calories just doing the activities of daily life and when you are asleep.  Your body's aerobic energy system supplies your muscles with fuel during these times and this fuel comes mainly from burning body fat.

Strength training or weight lifting is the most effective way to build and maintain your muscle mass.  Cardiovascular exercise does little to build muscle, and in fact, too much cardio can lead to muscle loss.  Additionally, you start to naturally lose muscle as consequence of age.  Thus, the less muscle you have the less body fat you burn.  So, the best long-term approach for losing that stubborn body fat is to maximize your muscle mass through strength training.  With this approach you  burn body fat 24 hours each day.  Just think of burning fat while you sleep, how sweet is that?