4. Lose Fat & Gain Lean Muscle Mass
Exercise is often seen as a way, when combined with a healthy, balanced diet, to lose weight. If that’s your goal, that’s fantastic. But dieting alone will only allow us to lose so much weight. When we restrict our calorie intake, our metabolic rate naturally declines.
This means that the rate at which we burn energy is decreased, which eventually slows down weight loss. Exercise on the other hand, increases our metabolic rate which burns more calories and therefore also burns fat, which leads to weight loss.
But exercise also builds lean muscle mass. (Incidentally, muscle doesn’t technically weigh more than fat. A pound of fat is the same weight as a pound of muscle. The difference is, muscle is more dense than fat, meaning that a pound of muscle takes up less space than a pound of fat.)
Building lean muscle mass helps to improve our tone and shape and make us stronger, which can boost confidence and motivate us to push ourselves further. But not only that, more lean muscle mass pushes our metabolism to work harder, meaning we burn more calories even when at rest. A pure virtuous cycle!