By Rachel Tandy
Techny Prairie Activity Center Supervisor
National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) Certified Personal Trainer (CPT) since 1995
Athletics and Fitness Associate of America (AFAA) Certified Group Exercise Instructor since 1994
Did you know muscle mass assists with weight loss, bone density and other general health issues? Whatever your fitness and health goals, you should be spending time in the weight room.
There is a difference between increasing lean muscle mass and traditional weightlifting. The goal in traditional weightlifting is maximum muscle hypertrophy—building the biggest muscles possible. Building lean muscle mass assists with body mass reduction, as muscle is denser tissue than fat and takes up less space. Two individuals can weigh the same on a scale but the person with a higher percentage of lean muscle mass will be smaller.
Lean muscle mass also directly increases your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) or the number of calories you burn at rest. Muscle, being active tissue as opposed to fat which is inactive tissue, requires more calorie consumption to function. The more lean muscle mass you have, the more calories you burn daily, even if you are inactive. When you work out on a treadmill or bike or go for a run the number of calories you burn increases exponentially when you have more lean muscle mass.
Lean muscle mass has also been proven to help maintain bone density as we grow older. Loss of bone density is the cause of osteopenia and osteoporosis and can lead to injuries. Lean muscle creates force on the bone, stimulating healthy bone growth.
Studies have also shown that increased lean muscle mass strengthens the immune system, helps decrease insulin resistance and helps fight chronic diseases.
An increase in lean muscle mass can be achieved with two to three, 20-minute weight training sessions per week. Our certified and experienced personal trainers at TPAC will be able to start you on your fitness journey during your three 30-minute Strong Start sessions included with membership!