Muscles burn calories even when you’re not using them

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by Rumi · 1 comment

in Q&A

by Bob
(NY, NY)

At age 37, I am 5’8” and 163 pounds. Well, not long ago, I was up to 188 pounds. Then, one day, I realized I was kind of fat. So, I resolved myself to get back in shape. Before doing any exercise or changing my eating habits, I researched the subject. As it turned out, you can increase your metabolic rate just by having more muscle. After all, muscles burn calories even when you’re not using them.

I also discovered that I was taking in about 6500 calories per day, and that my body fat percentage was higher than 31% (determined by the caliper method).

So, I began a moderate work-out routine; nothing serious, just a few repetitions with some light weights every other day. I also began paying more attention to what I ate; I didn’t starve myself, or even stop drinking, I just tried to avoid processed sugar and fried foods.

After two weeks, my weight dropped to about 170, and my body fat percentage dropped to less than 17% (for those of you who are checking, that’s 30 pounds of fat lost, and 12 pounds of muscle gain).

Energized and invigorated by my success, I increased the intensity of my workouts, but not by very much. I made it to the gym about 2 hours a week, and did the rest while watching TV from the comfort of my own home.

I didn’t do too much running or cardio, either. I just lifted weights lazily a few times a week, and that was enough. Honestly, it didn’t really feel that hard; because I was in better shape, even the more active workout seemed easier for me than the starting workout had been just two weeks prior.

After two months, I was down to 163 pounds and my body fat percentage was only 5%! That’s right; I lost 50 pounds of fat and gained 25 pounds of muscle, in only 2 months! I was in the best shape of my life.

More importantly, I looked great and I felt even better. I didn’t seriously alter my diet and I didn’t do much running. All I did was casually lift weights while continuing to the same things I always did.

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