Is Strength Training The Real Weight Loss Hack?

How we are helping our members at our Burleigh Heads gym lose weight with strength training.

We know strength training is an important part of any regular exercise program. Strength training is clearly the major factor in improving muscular strength but you may not be aware of how strength training can help you lose weight and keep it off. 

Research shows that strength training, with either body weight, bands, dumbbells or free weights, not only helps us build strength, but also improves muscle size and reduces body fat. While aerobic training such as walking, running and cycling are effective for reducing body fat, these activities can also decrease muscle size, leading to weaker muscles and greater total weight loss because muscle is more dense than fat, so while weight on the scales might be lower, body composition is less optimal. 

But unlike endurance exercises, evidence shows resistance training not only has beneficial effects on reducing body fat, it also increases muscle size and strength leading to a leaner more toned, healthy body composition. 

How is this the case? 

An increase in muscle mass through strength training will improve resting metabolic rate as muscle is metabolic in nature and uses energy even at rest unlike fat which does not. More muscle mass leads to a higher RMR meaning your body is using more calories even at rest! 

Another way that the body can burn more fat is called Excess Post-exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC) which is the after-burn effect where the body is catching up on the energy needed to recover after a hard workout. This is usually the result of high intensity training or heavy strength training that uses multiple large muscles, performed to or near fatigue which results in a longer-lasting after-burn and can result in an elevated metabolism for up to 24hrs post training. 

A major part of weight loss is obviously related to caloric intake and it is important to recognise the importance of nutrition and align that with your health and training goals. A recent study proved that interventions involving strength training and dietary modification were most effective at reducing body fat percentage and body fat mass.  

The results found: 

  • Significant weight loss benefits were achieved with combined resistance and aerobic exercise
  • Strength training alone was most effective at increasing lean mass
  • Muscle mass can be maintained with combined strength training and dietary modifications.


The key findings show that exercise, dietary and lifestyle interventions for weight management or weight loss are most important. 

The major take home points are that strength training is a powerful tool to build a strong and lean body and will assist in reducing body fat and keep you injury free. 

Basic recommendations state 3–5 strength training sessions per week are beneficial but as with all exercise, incorporating any strength training into your exercise routine will give you benefits. 

If you would like to find out how you can incorporate strength training into your routine have a chat to our coaches and we would be happy to chat about how our strength training gym can help you achieve your fitness goals. 

Want to find a gym near me? Check out our Burleigh Heads Gym and the Strength Classes we offer: Movement Innovation Strength Classes

Written By Aaron Ashdown, Exercise Physiologist & Trainer at Movement Innovation