Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Weight lifting

So I changed my gym membership so I can go to the gym every day and I've started lifting weights to progress in what I can lift so I build more muscle. It's sort of an intense bodybuilding type program.

But I think all that's going to happen is I will get bigger but the fat won't melt away.

I've tried doing weights I can do 20 reps with and I just plateaued that way. Didn't feel like I was gaining muscle OR losing fat.

Anyone out there have any suggestions?


jinxxxygirl said...

I kinda feel that way now Sars. I use Natilus equipment and i do three sets of 20 on everything i do. And i know the muscle is there just covered up by this layer of fat i cannot get rid of! It makes my biceps look huge. I've even considered stopping lifting cause this is not the look i'm going for. I want long lean well defined muscles. I don't use heavey weights just high reps. You get any good suggestions let me know, meanwhile i'll just keep lifting and hoping...Jinx!

Lucas said...

I have been meaning to respond to this post all day, anyway here goes:

The sad truth about weight loss is that it is 90% diet. You can never exercise enough to overcome a diet that is too high in calories.

That doesn't mean that exercise isn't important for weight loss. It is crucial for helping you to maintain muscle mass. This is especially true of resistance training, i.e. weight lifting.

Whenever someone loses weight, they don't just lose body fat. A portion of the lost weight comes from lean muscle mass. This is a bad thing, because it is lean muscle mass that burns calories. Weight training combined with caloric restriction will minimize the amount of lean muscle mass that is lost, which will eventually be crucial to helping you maintain your weight loss.

All that aside, you really have to focus on your diet to see big changes in your weight. Use an online calculator and determine your BMR, which is the number of calories your body burns if you lay in bed all day. Use that number to determine your daily calorie needs. Then, subtract 500-1000 and that should give you the number of calories you should eat to lose 1-2 pounds a week.

No matter what number you end up with at the end, never go below ~1100-1200 calories. Notice that I haven't said anything about what you should eat? That is because it doesn't really matter as long as you are eating relatively nutrient dense foods, i.e. bags of potato chips don't count.

If you do all this and haven't lost 5+ pounds in the next month it means one of two things: 1) You miscalculated something and are eating too much or 2) you have a metabolic disorder.

Good luck

Size8Ambition said...

Hi Sars!

I'm not sure what your goals in lifting are, but here are some rules of thumb:

3 sets of one of the two options...

For muscle size increase
Do 8-10 reps of the maximum amount of weight you can do, with good form, so that the last 2 are tough.

For toning
Do 12-15 reps at max weight, with good form, and not as much struggle to do the last 2.

This comes straight from Tony Horton and the P90X program.

If you know anyone who owns the DVDs, I would recommend checking them out. It is a great program that alternates lifing days with cardio days.

My husband and I have finished the first round and are going to start the next round soon.

Take care, and have a great B-Day while in Europe!

Elizabeth Robinson said...

If you can afford to have a monthly session with a personal trainer at the gym, it could be a huge help in setting realistic but challenging goals for the weight-lifting.

I just came across your blog today and am enjoying reading it. I'm also a large woman aiming to run a marathon.

Good luck, Sars!