Should you still continue to lift heavy during a weight loss phase?
People usually believe that when it comes to weight loss, you should lighten the weight and implement fatiguing techniques such as super sets and drop sets.
While this type of training may have its place, it’s no reason to avoid lifting heavy. The big compound movements such as squats, bench presses and deadlifts are beneficial as they target multiple muscle groups and are also a great indicator of your current strength.
During a weight loss phase, you’d want to lose a steady amount of weight each week and maintain as much strength as possible. For example, if you lost 10kg but are still maintaining strength, there’s a high chance your weight loss primarily came from fat and minimally from muscle. However, if you find your strength is dropping quickly week after week, then there may be the possibility you’re losing weight too fast, which, in this case, you’d either bump up your calorie intake or reduce cardio. The other possibility is you may not be performing the correct resistance required during your weight training sessions.
Lightening the weight and performing very high reps and endurance-based exercises may tend to burn more calories than your heavy main lifts, but if you really want to burn more calories, you’re better off doing cardio after weight training, or you can simply reduce your daily calorie intake to put you more into a deficit. If the goal is to maintain lean mass while you lose weight to achieve a toned, chiselled look, then continue to lift heavy and stay strong!
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