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Why You Shouldn't Use a Treadmill To Lose Fat

By Edited Oct 14, 2016 0 1

Low Intensity Exercise May Sabotage Your Fat Loss Efforts

There Has Got to Be A Better Way

If you are in your 40's you probably remember the cardio and aerobic explosion that started a few years prior to 1980. Through the efforts of Jim Fixx and Kenneth Cooper running and aerobics became quite popular among those in the fitness industry. We were told that these forms of exercise should be for focus of our workout routines. They touted the fact that research had show that cardiovascular exercise not only burned calories but fat calories as well.

 How can you go wrong with this, right? Well there is a little more to the story. It turns out that long sessions of cardio exercise do burn fat but it also tells your body that you need to store up fat to use for future workout sessions. So your body will end up storing fat. This is the opposite of what you are after. Hour after hour of endless aerobic exercise will not help you achieve the body that you are looking for. It will probably help keep your weight down but it will not necessarily help you burn fat very effectively. Your body will probably burn quite a bit of muscle as a source for its fuel.

 Let me explain it a little better. The average person who depends on cardio to burn fat runs that same amount of miles each and every workout session. Maybe it will be 3 miles or maybe it will be five miles. The problem is that they begin to easily work within their aerobic limits. They are never forcing their body to step outside of its comfort zone. They are never forcing their body to handle a capacity that it is ill equipped to handle.

 However, this is not the most detrimental part of aerobics and jogging. Long sessions of either form of exercise can actually decrease your muscle mass. You body will use muscle for energy. This will greatly impact your resting metabolic rate. The main component of your metabolic rate is the amount of muscle that you carry on your frame. The more muscle that you have the higher your metabolic rate will be. The higher your metabolic rate the more fat that you will burn. Why would you want to do anything that would lessen the amount of muscle that you have.

 A second drawback of aerobics and jogging is the impact that both have on your joints, especially jogging. Don't get me wrong I have spent plenty of time jogging throughout my life and I have also discovered that as I have aged jogging was become nearly impossible due to the terrible toll that it has taken on my knees, ankles and hips. Your joints and tendons (and mine) are not meant to take this kind of pounding. Instead of building up your body you are tearing it down.

 Yet another problem with cardiovascular exercise is that it is not what you would call a full body exercise. Running is primarily a workout for your legs and does nothing for your upper body. This creates quite a muscle imbalance throughout your body. This might also lead to future energy.

 There are much better and safer ways to lose body fat than through aerobic and cardio exercise. Low intensity aerobics are not the ideal style of workout. If you still don't believe it take a look at the people that you see on the treadmills constantly at your health club. Do you ever see a big difference or change in their body makeup. If they are doing cardio alone then the answer to that is probably no.



Feb 4, 2011 11:58am
I've never heard the theory that long sessions of cardio and aerobic exercise can "actually decrease your muscle mass." Interesting article.
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