It’s true to say that as you get older, losing weight can become more of a challenge. Once you passed your 40s you may find that the excess fat that you have gained over years, even decades and been carrying for a while begins to harden. You might already have a pot belly and you may have noticed that the weight around your stomach feels firm.
You probably heard before that your metabolism slows down by five percent every decade after forty. What you may not know is that the reason that happens is because we start losing muscle mass after 30, about 3-5% every decade, unless we do something about it. Less lean mass means less fat burned with the same amount of activity you've done before that can result in gaining weight even if your activity levels and nutrition habits stay the same.
Once you are there, pounds heavier and wonder what happened, it may seem more difficult to lose weight. While you need more patience to see it through, it’s certainly not impossible. You just need to make sure that you are following the right steps when exercising for weight loss. But, before we look at what will work it’s important to understand what won’t.
Why Aren’t You Losing Weight?
First, it’s important to recognize the crucial part that your diet will play here. You need to be eating in a calorie deficit if you are looking to lose weight. No matter how 'healhty' or 'clean' you eat, if you eat more or the same as your body uses, you won't lose weight.
Start by cutting the junk food out of your diet and start eating more fruit and veg. The latter are much lower in calories and will fill your stomach. Vegetables are packed with fibre which will help you lose weight because they will satisfy your appetite longer and faster. Be aware that certain salad dressings and toppings are much higher in calories, than you may realise. Keep avocado, salad oils, nuts and seed consumption at bay and if you are eating out, watch out for fried toppings like bacon, even onions.
In terms of exercise, if you have been doing the same things in the gym or outdoors for months on end and haven't seen any improvement, you need to change the game. While aerobic exercise and cardio in general have their own benefits, for some they won't make much of a difference in themselves.
How To Lose Weight With Exercise
We, at Team Howell believe that the best exercise for losing weight is strength training. Getting stronger requires you to continuously challenge your body's limits. This will create metabolic perturbation or in other words, causes changes in your body's metabolic responses including aiding weight loss. But even simply weightlifting at any pace or for certain repetitions isn’t the answer.
First, it’s important that you don’t give your body too long to rest. There are a variety of weight lifting methods and practices you can follow, including muscle endurance, hypertrophy and strength training. Whe you are trying to lose weight, you are better to push your body to the limit, so te next time you workout you will have more strength. That means more lean muscle that equals more efficient fat burning.
Losing fat isn’t easy, nor should you expect it to be. This means that lifting light weights is not the best way to drop those pounds. Instead, you need to aim for heavier loads, even if you end up doing fewer lifts overall. So, lower those reps and increase the amount that you’re lifting.
But that’s just one way to make things harder and thus more effective. Don’t rely on machines, free-lift because machines will take some of the weight for you. You need a workout to feel like a workout. If your bum starts to hurt from sitting on it for too long, you’re not exercising the right way to lose weight.
Have any questions on how to create your gym workout routine or you'd just like to pop in to check out hte Team Howell gym? Feel free to get in touch!