Metabolism Myths: Building Muscle Increases Metabolism

With regards to metabolism, the common belief is as you build more muscle, your metabolism will significantly increase – which means you will burn more fats and increase weight loss.

Trainers, physicians, and other fitness experts often get asked whether a person should do more aerobic exercises or more strength training workouts.

Before arriving at any conclusions, you should first look at how muscle helps boost metabolism.

A pound of muscle increases a person’s metabolic rate by just 6 calories a day. Here’s the thing though, a man can expect to gain as much as 1-2 pounds of muscle per month; females, about half a pound – given that you train consistently and consume sufficient amounts of protein.

Looking at these facts, you can deduce that building muscle takes as long as losing weight, and that building muscle doesn’t increase metabolism by that much. Obviously there’s no clear answer to quick weight loss.

This doesn’t mean however, that you should drop weight training altogether. Remember that the body needs variety; otherwise it will get used to a workout and stop burning more calories. Dr. Mark Dedomenico suggests doing cardio exercises at least 5 times a week, and strength training 2-3 times a week “for the most success when actively trying to lose weight.” Dr. Dedomenico adds that when a person loses weight and creates a caloric deficit, the body does not recognize fats and muscle, so it simply takes where it can.

When a person creates a caloric defict, strength training helps preserve lean body mass, leaving you strong and not emaciated. Dr. Dedomenico also suggests talking to a personal trainer or taking a circuit training class at the gym to help you stay lean, and lose weight at the same time.

Source: MSN Health