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How to Trade in Fat for Muscle Part 2

Why You Need to Lift Heavy Things to Change Your Body Composition
How to Trade in Fat for Muscle Part 2

Dear Kosterina Family, 

You may remember an earlier weekly wellness where we talked about two key necessities to trade in fat for muscle. Our favorite how-to resource for how to change body composition (in the right direction) is Dr. Gabrielle Lyon’s book Forever Strong, Dr. Lyon makes the case for muscle-centric medicine and states that “building muscle is the most important safeguard for health because it is the bodily system that will allow us to live our longest, most capable, fulfilling life.” 

In our first post, we highlighted the prioritization of protein in order to increase satiety and build lean muscle. Today, we want to focus on the second: resistance training. 

What is resistance training?

Resistance training is essentially just lifting heavy things, and then over time, lifting heavier things. In weight-lifting, which as we all know includes things like squats with a barbell, bench presses, etc., you essentially overload your muscles with heavy weight, breaking down your individual sarcomeres and letting them grow back larger and stronger. 

Resistance training can actually be beneficial to toning muscle, creating a lean and sculpted physique. Furthermore, it is even more effective at targeting your “visceral” fat, the fat that surrounds our organs underneath our “subcutaneous” fat (the fat that you can see and feel). Read more about the dangers of visceral fat in our previous blog post here.

How do I start?

Weight training truly is essential to longevity. Research suggests that we lose approximately 3-8% of our muscle mass, per decade, after turning 30. If you can afford a trainer, we think it’s worth the investment, even if it's only a few sessions so you can learn the basics. If it’s not in your budget right now and you need some help getting started, we really loved this resource on Dr. Lyon’s website Forever Strong 5-Day Training Program complete with a video of each exercise. 

Here are a few other simple tips: 

Create a schedule. Commit to making exercise a habit! Plan out your week and days, targeting specific muscle groups that you want to work on. Maybe Tuesday is for Triceps and shoulders, while Thursday is for legs and glutes. Whatever you choose, be sure to commit to it.

Create an accompanying meal plan. Protein intake and resistance training work hand-in-hand. Make sure that you are consuming enough protein and overall nutrition to support your fitness journey!

Stretch! Remember to stretch your muscles to avoid injury and encourage lean growth. Learn more about the holistic benefits of stretching, here.

If you need some more inspiration, some podcasts that broach this topic consistently are:

Dr. Lyon says “Aging and becoming frail is not a passive process - you have a choice.” Yes to the power to choose. Happy and safe lifting!

Peace, Love, and EVOO, 

Katina and the Kosterina Team

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