Long-Term Weight Loss – Step 3: Increase Your Metabolism

Increase Metabolism

Increasing your metabolism may be one of the most effective ways to achieve and maintain weight loss goals.

Metabolism, simply put, is the process of breaking down proteins, carbohydrates, and fats to yield the energy your body needs to maintain itself. The rate of your metabolism depends on the interaction between the number of calories you consume, the number of calories you burn while eating and exercising, and the calories you burn based on your individual genetic makeup.

Eating foods that require extra energy to be digested and metabolized can significantly increase your metabolism. Your body burns a lot more calories digesting high protein foods than foods that are high in carbohydrates or fat. You can also increase your metabolism by eating frequently. Eating frequently reassures your body that you aren’t going to starve; the body actually realizes that food will always be available and therefore doesn’t have to conserve fat for energy. Research shows that people who eat every 3-4 hours have less body fat and faster metabolisms than those who eat only 2 or 3 meals per day. However, eating frequently doesn’t mean eating mindless snacking. Snacks should be balanced, consisting of approximately 50% carbohydrate, 25% protein and 25% unsaturated fat.

Increasing your intake of high-fiber vegetables can also increase your metabolism. Fiber is a non-digestible carbohydrate, but the body tries hard to break it down anyway, using up energy and boosting metabolism in the process. Additionally, vegetables are low in calories and high in nutrients.

Exercise also increases metabolism, temporarily and permanently. You can maximize the calories you burn post-exercise by integrating high intensity cardio intervals into your workout. You can also raise your metabolism for as many as 24 hours after intense weight lifting, especially when using heavier weights. Heavier weights cause microscopic tears in the muscle fibers. The body requires additional energy to repair these tears.

Long Term Weight LossLean muscle boosts your body’s metabolism permanently, as long as you maintain it. Each extra pound of muscle you carry can burn up to 50 additional calories, with little to no effort on your part. This means that you can consume more calories on a daily basis than you could prior to adding the lean mass. This can significantly help with weight loss maintenance. Strength training is the fastest way to increase lean muscle mass. The training should be geared towards muscle hypertrophy, which means that a specific number of exercises, reps and sets will be necessary to make those gains.

An experienced Health and Fitness Professional can design an exercise routine geared specifically to increasing lean muscle and boosting metabolism. This will enable you to accomplish your weight loss goals rapidly, as well as maintain them.

Natalie Gibbins is a San Diego Fitness professional who’s passion for weight training and fitness began 23 years ago, while growing up in England. Her love of exercise prompted her to become a Certified Personal Trainer in 1997. She owns and operates The Private Gym, an affordable solution to finding a San Diego Personal Trainer.

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