Should You Be Doing Reps Or Sets For Weight Loss?

So you want to lose weight and keep fit, and you think light cardio workouts or regular walks around the block are enough. Think again. Incorporating strength training into a workout routine is vitally important, according to VeryWellFit. When slimming down is your goal, you might be staying away from weights out of fear of bulking up. But weight lifting is the very thing you need to boost your metabolism and change your body composition.

If you're a newbie to lifting weights, or if you've been at it for a while, there's a certain approach that works best for weight loss. It doesn't matter if you're doing Romanian deadlifts, swinging kettlebells, or performing another strength-based exercise, by strength training this way, you'll get better results when it comes to shedding pounds and shaping up.

The secret to using weights for weight loss is to do fewer sets and more reps per set. POPSUGAR recommends that beginners start with three sets of 10 reps and gradually increase to three or four sets of 12 reps. If you've been lifting weights for a while, then three or four sets of 10 to 15 reps is ideal. But there's more to it.

How to create a workout routine to lose weight

Keep in mind, you need both strength and cardio to lose weight (per VeryWellFit). Celebrity trainer and fitness author Obi Obadike told Body Building that lifting before doing cardio is better for weight loss. This is because your body needs to get rid of stored sugar called glycogen before it can burn stored fat. By doing strength training first, your body releases glycogen. That means all of your cardio efforts will help you get shredded fast. Healthline says to strength train two to three days per week. For cardio, 30 minutes of moderate-intensity five days a week is great. If you can, swap two of those days for at least 25 minutes of vigorous aerobics or HIIT.

According to Livestrong, a pre-workout meal fuels the body with the energy it needs to burn more fat. Eat a meal with carbs, fat, and protein three hours before you hit the gym. They recommend a turkey and cheese sandwich on whole-wheat bread. If you don't have time for a whole meal before your workout, Self says you can enjoy a snack with protein and carbs at least 30 minutes ahead of time. Rice cakes with nut butter or a smoothie with a cup of fruit and two cups of veggies are good options.

Post-workout, Medical News Today advises eating a protein-rich snack or meal, drinking yerba mate herbal tea, and hydrating with water to restore electrolytes.