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Why a Pause in Weight Loss Might Be Good News

Why a Pause in Weight Loss Might Be Good News

When people diet it is not uncommon to experience a plateau or a pause in weight loss. Muscle and fat have different density. In fact, muscle is approximately 18 percent more dense than fat. One pound of muscle occupies less volume within the body than one pound of fat does. In addition to taking up less space muscle is a lot less lumpy under your skin than fat. Muscle is more compact in the body. There are many health benefits to increasing muscle mass.

A pause in weight loss might be good news for you. If you are constantly working out eating well and are still experiencing a pause in weight loss, that may just mean that you are gaining muscle mass and burning fat. Therefore you are actually shrinking but not losing physical pounds. There are also many more benefits to having lean muscle mass aside from just having a leaner physique.

Benefits of lean muscle mass include:

-reduced risk of injury
-improved balance and mobility
-increased strength, stability, power, and endurance
-you will feel much better about yourself and your figure
-increased energy and vitality
-will improve your athletic performance
-create metabolic reserve in types of trauma such as burns or accidents
-increases your metabolic efficiency
-improved insulin sensitivity and improved blood glucose control

So even if you aren’t losing pounds according to the scale, you are still getting smaller and improving your ability to burn fat and lose more fat pounds. Every pound of fat in your body has stored is a representation of 3500 calories of unused energy. In order to lose that 3500 calories (equal to a pound) you either have to consume 3500 less calories over time or do 3500 calories worth of exercise. However when you increase your lean muscle mass, especially through resistance training, you will help your body burn more calories throughout the day. One pound of muscle will burn slightly more calories at rest then one pound of fat.

One of the best forms of exercise for gaining more muscle and burning more fat is resistance training. Resistance training, or strength training, is a type of physical exercise specializing in the use of resistance to induce muscular contraction which builds the strength, anaerobic endurance, and the size of skeletal muscles. This training can include weight lifting, resistance bands, or just turning up the resistance in your aerobic exercises. Not only does resistance training make you stronger, it will also improve joint function, bone density, and improve the strength of your tendons and ligaments.

These are just some of the many reasons why a pause in your weight loss might be a good thing. Just because your weight might increase or stop decreasing doesn’t mean your waistline is not getting any smaller. It is important to include resistance training in your exercise regimen to increase muscle mass and decrease fat. And by increasing muscle mass you are also going to burn more calories when you’re at rest.

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