One of the most common health/fitness goals is weight loss. There are 3 main ways to achieve this:
- Diet+ Exercise.
Many studies have shown that doing only exercise, might not be the best way to lose weight.
Individuals who focus only on their diet usually were able to lose a significant amount of weight. However, when losing weight, the real question is what are you losing exactly?
Our body weight consists of many different things - body fat, muscle, water, organs, bones, etc. When my clients come to me and they say they want to lose weight, most of the time they mean body fat or they want to see a drop in their circumferences (e.g. waist, hips, upper arm, thigh, etc.)
The issue with using diet only approach to lose weight is that you are losing muscle along with body fat. Aside from being crucial for health and well-being, muscles give you shape and that "toned" look that most people are after.
Preferably you want to track body composition changes in addition to weight changes and progress photos. With all of our clients we use state of the art ultrasound body composition machine (http://www.intelametrix.ca/) to determine body fat and muscle changes which also allows us to further customize exercise and nutrition programs.
By incorporating strength training into your routine, your body gets the signal to keep and build muscle. When paired with proper diet, body weight loss will primarily come from loses in body fat and not muscle.
P.S. if you are a woman, you are not going to get bulky from strength training, unless you suffer from PCOS (more likely to gain muscle/different strength training protocols needed) or have a strong genetic predisposition to gain more muscle than an average male (less than 1% of the population).