Whenever I speak to people who would like to achieve some health and fat-loss results, I always explain to them the importance and benefit of regular and structured resistance training (i.e. lifting weights).
Sadly, I am met with replies such as; “but I have a physical job” or “I do plenty of cleaning and gardening around the house” or “I still play sport so I don’t need to do any weights”…
Whilst it can be tempting to think that you don’t need to do any weights training because you move a lot in your daily activities, it’s important to understand the real science of muscle fibres.
I want you to think of a manual car.
Let’s pretend that you start driving but you never change out of 1st gear. Yes, the car is moving so you may be forgiven for thinking that you are driving properly but we all know that cars have more than one gear.
And if you only ever drive around in 1st gear, it won’t be long until the clutch, gear box and engine break down and eventually stop working entirely. As they say; use it or lose it.
The same principle applies to your muscles…
You see, each and every muscle group (i.e. your biceps) are made up of different types of fibers. Different fibers come into play depending on the activity you are doing and the strain placed on that muscle group.
Doing repetitive but light-weight movements such as gardening, cleaning and even physical labour (yep that’s you, tradies) only really stimulates the fibers that are good at completing that type of work.
Sadly, the fibers that are good at doing heavier, power-based movements of short duration (i.e. lifting weights) will waste away if not stimulated often enough. And here is the kicker…
If you don’t stimulate these very important muscle fibers in a way that they respond to, they can be lost for good, resulting in a permanently slower metabolism (and therefore impaired fat-burning capacity).
The science is clear folks, regardless of how active you are, you need to be performing specific resistance based exercise designed to stimulate these very important muscle fibers, because not much else will.