{Guest Post} Mythbusting: Weight Loss Workouts

February 5, 2014

Friends! I have an awesome guest post for you today. As you may have noticed, the past few weeks I’ve been linking up to Lisa’s “Fit Tip Tuesday”. Lisa is filled with quick tips leading to a healthier and “fitter” you, whatever your version of “fit” may be

One of the series which Lisa has coined is called “mythbusting”, where she takes what people consider conventional knowledge and turns it on its head. I asked if Lisa might be able to contribute some of her mythbusting ideas with you today. So listen up folks because Lisa is about to make you smarter!

TSOH Guest BloggerHey everyone! I’m so happy to be collaborating with Davida and sharing some healthy expertise with you all!

I do a lot of “mythbusting” on my site and Davs requested I share with you a common myth to bust.

The myth: Doing tons of cardio/running & hours at the gym will help you lose weight.

The facts: Wrong! Doing some cardio but mostly strength training will help you lose weight without spending hours at the gym!

mythbusting healthy mavenHere’s how it works:

Most people struggle to lose weight because of slow metabolism due to years of neglecting their health. Slow metabolism can also be the culprit of that frustrating “last 10” to lose. There are tons of claims out there about metabolism. Eating this, doing that, yada yada, will all “boost your metabolism.” The truth is, there are unfortunately only 2 things that determine your metabolism: genetics & lean muscle. We can’t change genetics, but we can definitely do something about lean muscle.

By building up lean muscle in our bodies, we allow our metabolism to work harder and faster, speeding up and burning more calories naturally throughout the day. Ever wonder why your boyfriend can eat a large pizza in one sitting and maintains a 6-pack? It’s the 6-pack!

Most girls don’t want to look too buff and strong, but doing strength training with even light weights a few times a week can do wonders for your metabolism. By building up tone rather than burning down fat, you train your body to burn more calories outside of the gym. That’s a much faster way to lose weight or maintain a healthier weight than waiting for the fat to melt off on the treadmill. It also has the added bonus of tightening and toning your body, making it look slimmer and leaner than cardio alone.

Cardio is important to lead a healthy lifestyle, but spending hours on the treadmill is enough to drive anyone crazy – especially at the slow pace it takes to really see results. Plus, cardio doesn’t change the fact that you’re hungry immediately after and usually eat up those calories all over again! By incorporating strength training, your body will start to expend more calories doing cardio, speeding up the weight loss process even further!

In conclusion, building up some tone and lean muscle to your body will speed up your metabolism. That will help you burn more calories throughout the day, whether you’re running or even sleeping! 

My recommendation: lift weights or do resistance strength training 3-5 times per week and some cardio 2-3 days per week, you won’t regret it!

PS – It’s also important to note that eating some protein (milk, eggs, lean fish or meat, nuts, etc) within 30 minutes after a strength workout will help boost the results!!

Thanks for having me Davs!



Thank you Lisa for taking over THM today! It’s probably time I stop using that kettle bell as a door stopper….

Today we’re actually doing a blog swap so be sure to head over to The Skinny on Health for my Q & A on life, recipe development and my beauty tips (laughable!).

Follow The Skinny on Health on Twitter –> @xoxoTSOH
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Follow The Skinny on Health on Instagram –> @lisaeberly

Do you typically include strength training in your fitness routine? If so, how often?


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  • Reply
    Tina Muir
    February 5, 2014 at 7:38 am

    Great post! I love that you have cleared this up! I have so many people ask me about it, now I know where to refer them to! Thanks Lisa, and thanks Davida for hosting 🙂

    Strength training is extremely important to my training. I mostly use dumbbells of around 10-20lb for most of my exercises, but I think that is enough to get the weight bearing effects. It also helps with bone strength as I actually do not have a period anymore because of my running (well thats what the doctors say), dont worry, I have had all the tests and they are sure nothing is wrong. It happens with a lot of elite athletes, and I am actually trying something new now to see if they come back. Anyway….(sorry to ramble)……I wouldnt have run half my PRs without strength training, they reduce the weaknesses that are caused by running, so you do not get injured! I would never have run my 33:24 10k without it! That was when I really saw the difference 🙂

    • Reply
      Davida @ The Healthy Maven
      February 7, 2014 at 12:53 pm

      You gotta find what works for you, right Tina? Over the years I have found that running doesn’t work with my body. I have flat feet and valgus knees that despite orthotics still make running incredibly taxing on my body. Strength training on the other hand has been a godsend. Especially after recovering from so many running injuries. Truth-be-told I could probably kick my cardio up a notch if only for the cardiovascular benefits but for now trying to get my heart rate up while lifting seems to do the trick 🙂

  • Reply
    kathy @ vodka and soda
    February 5, 2014 at 7:44 am

    a billion times yes!!! cardio is great for training your heart/lungs but lifting is where it’s at. i could lift all day. i lift 5 days a week, do 1 day of cardio and still manged to drop inches and build muscle and feel badass.

    Vodka and Soda

  • Reply
    February 5, 2014 at 7:58 am

    This is a wonderful reminder. I always get stuck in the cardio mindset because lifting weights seems intimidating plus I think that since I’m burning more calories on the treadmill then I’m more likely to lose weight. I think the recommendation to do both a few times a week is so important and I’m going to make that my new goal. Thanks for the post!

    • Reply
      Davida @ The Healthy Maven
      February 7, 2014 at 12:59 pm

      Florence, I actually burn more calories lifting than I do doing cardio! You should give it a try!

  • Reply
    Holly @ EatGreatBEGreat
    February 5, 2014 at 8:04 am

    Such a great post! I was one of those people who used to think I just needed to do cardio to shed a few pounds. Well, I quickly learned that that just wasn’t the case. Now, I make sure to add strength training into my routine at least a few times a week.

  • Reply
    February 5, 2014 at 8:05 am

    I strength train probably 4 days a week and then cardio/kickboxing the other 2. I LOVE strength training. I used to do cardio for an hour and a half every day (CRAZY talk) and no strength training whatsoever. Well, now I do 45 mins of strength training (or less) and I get better results than when I did all that nonsense cardio. 🙂

    • Reply
      Davida @ The Healthy Maven
      February 7, 2014 at 1:01 pm

      Ya live and you learn right?! So happy we both discovered strength training and I’m super excited to where your next fitness venture will take you as a personal trainer! p.s. come train me. and style me. just move in. k thanks.

  • Reply
    Erin @ The Almond Eater
    February 5, 2014 at 8:35 am

    Thanks for this Lisa! I’ve actually noticed more and more women/girls at my gym doing strength training and it makes me so happy! I’m hoping the word is spreading that lifting weights won’t bulk you up. It’s so necessary! Like you said, even if it’s just light weights a couple of times a week–it makes a difference!

  • Reply
    Amanda @ .running with spoons.
    February 5, 2014 at 8:41 am

    I used to be the queen of cardio, but I fell in love with strength training when I gave it a go and noticed much better results from it. I’m not doing any formal workouts right now, but I’ll admit that I definitely miss lifting sometimes and I’m thinking about incorporating it back into my routine soon — feeling strong is one of the best highs.

  • Reply
    Shashi @
    February 5, 2014 at 8:49 am

    Awesome and informative guest post – I did not know eating some sort of protein 30 minutes after a workout boosted the results! I strength train more in winter – about 3 to 4 times a week, but need to keep this up in summer too – it’s just hard not to lace up and get lost in a long run outdoors when the weather is warm.

  • Reply
    Kelly @ Kelly Runs For Food
    February 5, 2014 at 8:54 am

    Great post! I’m a cardio queen, but I try to fit in strength training too. I probably do cardio 3-5 times a week and strength 3-4 times!

  • Reply
    February 5, 2014 at 8:56 am

    Love this! Last summer I was hitting the gym weights a LOT more than cardio and lost about 10 pounds. I’ve trickled off because it’s cold and I hate leaving my apartment. But with the Love Your Body Challenge and Winter Shape Up I’ve got my light weights back out! Plus, I like weights more than loads of cardio! Thanks for sharing!

  • Reply
    Jana @ Happy Wife Healthy life
    February 5, 2014 at 9:06 am

    Loved this post! I used to be all about cardio, but never felt fit. Strength training helps tremendously with overall health and well-being! 🙂

  • Reply
    Ang @ Nutty for Life
    February 5, 2014 at 9:07 am

    Definitely true! I was a cardio junkie when I was in high school, afraid to lift because I didn’t want to get bulky. But all that cardio just isn’t sustainable! I’ve enjoyed adding more strength to my routine and have felt better than I ever have since doing so (well, that and adding in yoga!).

  • Reply
    Sam @ Better With Sprinkles
    February 5, 2014 at 9:17 am

    I do love my strength training! Right now, my workouts are going to consist of yoga, pilates and physique, which should help me maintain my strength (at least to some extent) while keeping it as low-impact/intensity as possible.

  • Reply
    February 5, 2014 at 9:30 am

    I used to think that lots of cardio was the answer to fat loss. I only ran on the treadmill every day and I didn’t do any kind of strength workouts. I’m glad that I learned quickly that strength training was important for fat loss!

    Ashley, Married to the Game

  • Reply
    Tina @ Tina's Chic Corner
    February 5, 2014 at 10:15 am

    Awesome guest post! Super informative. 🙂

  • Reply
    Lisa @ The Skinny on Health
    February 5, 2014 at 10:58 am

    Love it! So glad we could do this! 🙂


  • Reply
    Amy @ Long Drive Journey
    February 5, 2014 at 11:11 am

    Just more confirmation that I need to start strength training. Losing weight wasn’t my focus with cardio, but I would definitely like to both tone and strengthen, so I think I need to stop being so nervous about it and start learning how to lift. Great post!

    • Reply
      Lisa @ The Skinny on Health
      February 5, 2014 at 4:05 pm

      Thanks! You can do it! If you’re not into lifting, there are tons of other strength training options that are less intimidating! Power yoga builds up strength, as does pilates and barre classes! Those are great, welcoming ways to ease into strength training until you’re more comfortable lifting!

  • Reply
    February 5, 2014 at 1:17 pm

    Love this post! So true! I think people, women especially, are scared to lift weights because they think they’ll get “big” but really the lean muscle mass is so important to helping you look and feel amazing. Thanks for sharing with us Lisa!

  • Reply
    Jess @dearhealthyness
    February 5, 2014 at 1:22 pm

    At some point or another the majority of us become the cardio bunny, but by doing research and asking the right person, not the fitness magazines industry, we’ll know that strength training gives us better results! I said this not only as a personal trainer, but for experience!

  • Reply
    February 5, 2014 at 1:27 pm

    I love this because it kind of reaffirms my mission lately. I noticed while trying to lose weight that running 4 miles only made me hungry 30 minutes later. Incorporating more strength and less cardio seems to be working for me so far!

  • Reply
    Lauren @ ihadabiglunch
    February 5, 2014 at 3:38 pm

    Great post! I totally agree! While I love running, I noticed such a huge difference in my overall health when I started strength training. It’s so funny that oftentimes it’s the fittest people who can eat so much — it’s because all that muscle means you’re burning more calories even when you’re at rest. You’re helping fuel your body and making it possible to eat all the great foods you love while still maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Plus, it’s awesome to be strong!! It feels so great.

    • Reply
      Lisa @ The Skinny on Health
      February 5, 2014 at 4:03 pm

      I totally agree! Feeling lean and strong feels sooo good — it’s the kind of change you can really feel almost immediately. It’s incredibly empowering and confidence-boosting! 🙂

  • Reply
    Nicole @ Foodie Loves Fitness
    February 5, 2014 at 3:45 pm

    Awesome advice, Lisa! When I was younger I used to be a cardio queen — now, I much prefer do workouts that have cardio & strength training mixed together. Besides the benefits you mention, I also just find it so much more fun than just sitting on an elliptical for an hour!

  • Reply
    Sarah Pie
    February 5, 2014 at 3:53 pm

    Great post both of you! I use my weights more in the winter (when I can’t go run outside) but during the warmer months I’m all about the cardio… or at least I was last summer we’ll see if it stick this year 🙂

  • Reply
    Megan (The Lyons' Share)
    February 5, 2014 at 4:14 pm

    Great post! I actually posted today about how chronic cardio (marathon training) can lead to weight GAIN! I love my running, but 100% agree that steady-state cardio is NOT the most effective way to lose weight!

  • Reply
    February 5, 2014 at 6:30 pm

    I love this and I’m so excited to have an incredible new blog to follow!!!
    I agree with her whole post but I’m still sort of a cardio junkie (aren’t all long distance runners?!).

  • Reply
    Whitney @ To Live & Diet in L.A.
    February 5, 2014 at 8:54 pm

    Two of my favorite bloggers in one spot! Lucky day 🙂

    Lisa is the best and I love her helpful nutritional advice.

  • Reply
    February 5, 2014 at 9:54 pm

    Cardio, strength training, weight lifting, spinning, yoga-ing…Doesn’t matter, I love it all.

  • Reply
    Chai a cup of life
    February 5, 2014 at 11:51 pm

    Great post! I used to be a cardio junkie, I did so much running, competitions and kickboxing- I loved the sweat. Now I totally changed and got into yoga 10 years ago and started teaching it. However, I do my strength through yoga with hand stands etc…do you think that I would need to incorporate some weights to improve strength??

  • Reply
    February 6, 2014 at 9:12 am

    This was a great post! It’s been my goal for the past 2-3 months to do 3-4 30 minute bouts of strength training a week. I really enjoy them, even though I do them with 3 lb weights and a 7 lb kettlebell… and I have lost 3 pounds, despite running 25+ miles a week before haha!

  • Reply
    Tonya@Healthy, Fit, and Frugal
    February 6, 2014 at 2:09 pm

    I know this about strength training but I still find I loathe it more than cardio. Cardio is so much more fun to me. At least I do get a little strength training in…that’s something, right? hello? 🙂

  • Reply
    Heather @ Run Like a G!
    February 6, 2014 at 8:35 pm

    Great post!
    I think it is odd that women are still “against” weights when research and bloggers can confirm that lifting can be essential! Plus we don’t get bulky unless we really really really try!

  • Reply
    Bob Spencer
    March 28, 2014 at 12:43 pm

    Some great points but let me give you the shocker. Weight gain has nothing to do with lack of exercise or over abundance of food consumption. That is correct. I didn’t believe it for one second over 15 months ago. If you make sure your body is completely nutrified with the proper nutrition and are absorbing the nutrition in a solid way, you will not gain weight and your weight will come off that is perfect for the body. I am telling you, you will just not crave foods. I decided to disprove the process so I completely stopped all exercise, starting taking high quality nutrition, and I was told to eliminate all gluten. (for perfect absorption) I lost 15 pounds and the weight doesn’t fluctuate a single pound ever! And I might add, not even a single aspiron for anything. I just thought I would pass this on and maybe be of some help.

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