Increased exercise reps equals faster weight loss… right? LIB guest fitness trainer Anthony Bevilacqua sums it up for us.
“I just started dieting so its time to change my workout up and do more reps. You know, more reps equal cuts.”
How many of us have ever heard that? Should you really do higher reps when trying to lose fat or tone up?
Does this have any truth to it and should we all be doing this?
NO. The immense misconception came about, I believe, because the fitness magazines needed something new to print. Before we go into details, let’s look at what builds muscle in the first place. Muscle growth does not happen overnight: Muscle growth happens over weeks, months and years and it occurs by progressive overload and the accumulation of more workout volume (more sets, reps and weights in every workout). Simply put, whatever builds muscle will maintain it the best.
In order to lose body fat you must be in a caloric deficit, and when you are in a caloric deficit, your muscle is not in a state of growth or anabolism. The most important thing to remember is that when trying to drop body fat, we are trying to lose the fat in the mirror – not weight on the scale.
When we lose body fat, we are altering our body composition. Our main responsibility should be to build and maintain muscle. The only way to burn fat, is to build muscle. Muscles help raise our metabolic rate, so this is why muscle is so important to looking better.
Whatever will build muscle is what will build and maintain your muscles. If you are consistently “going heavy” to build muscle, sticking with that will help you to maintain that muscle. Switching up your training style will not make you more defined. What will make you defined or toned is being in a caloric deficit and doing cardio. Doing extra reps won’t make you tighter!