If you have ever had trouble losing weight you have probably placed at least some of the blame on a sluggish metabolism and it's true - the rate at which your body uses energy - can affect your ability to shed excess fat weight.
You would have likely heard it said, "When you hit 30 your metabolism slows down".
But the cause of this is not the increasing number of candles on your birthday cake.
So, what do you think has the biggest impact on the slowing of your metabolism? Age? Thyroid function? Activity levels? Wrong on all three counts.
While these things have a tiny influence on your metabolic rate it is not nearly as much as...
the condition and state of your muscle tissue.
The more toned muscle you have the more fuel (calories) you will be burning regardless of how old you are or how active you are.
Muscle tissue is highly active requiring a lot of energy just to exist and if it has been allowed to become weak and flabby and its energy requirements have become low it is likely the number one reason why you have become overweight in the first place.
Our muscles drive our metabolism Our muscular system is the engine of our body making up to 50 percent of our body weight and our modern day sedentary lifestyles work against it as we literally can get through every day without having to 'move a muscle'.
Most of us sit for most of the 16 hours we are awake each day and you can imagine what affect this has on our muscles.
But the good news is it is easy to reverse this situation.
A proper strength training exercise program works like magic to increase muscle tone to fire up the metabolism and keep the body running at its fat-burning best.
So, to lose that excess fat weight you need to restore the health and function on your metabolism increasing the amount of fuel (calories) your body uses both during your waking hours and resting or sleeping hours - both during activity and when not active.
Just 2-3 sessions each week are needed and the sessions can be quite short (30-45 minutes) if you put a bit of effort into them.
Keep in mind that only proper exercise that works your muscles through their ranges of movement under a load is going to work to increase metabolism.
Long slow activities do not boost the metabolism Long duration, low intensity activity will not do this.
You can still do these activities as part of an active lifestyle but do your strength training first as it is the only one that is going to have the power to change your metabolic rate.
This is the most effective way you will not only lose weight but will keep it off for the long haul which is something dieting and 'cardio' type activity will never ever give you It may take some time to reverse the damage caused by a metabolic motor that has lost its power.
Depending on how long it has been neglected it could take 6-12 months or longer to fix but be assured it can be fixed.
Regular consistent strengthening exercise is exactly what your body has been designed for and loves nothing more than doing it.
And of course you will absolutely love the affect it will have on your body when you slowly but surely lose that excess fat weight that is causing you to age quicker, spoiling your looks and risking your health.
So, get along to your local gym or fitness center, get yourself started and never stop.