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How Many Calories Are Burned in a Weight Lifting Workout?

Weight lifting is a great exercise for building muscle, getting stronger, and boosting your metabolism. The calories you burn during weight lifting depend on several things, like how hard you work out, how long you lift weights, and your body weight and muscle mass.

Factors That Affect Calorie Burn

  1. Intensity and Duration: The harder and longer you lift weights, the more calories you burn. High-intensity workouts with short breaks burn more calories than low-intensity workouts with long breaks.
  2. Body Weight: Heavier people burn more calories because their bodies need more energy to do the same activities. For example, a person who weighs 150 pounds might burn around 200-300 calories in a 30-minute weight lifting session.
  3. Muscle Mass: Muscle burns more calories at rest than fat. So, people with more muscle mass burn more calories even when they’re not working out.

Average Calorie Burn

On average, a 30-minute weight lifting session can burn about 90-180 calories. But this can go up a lot with more intense and longer workouts. For example, an hour of weight lifting can burn up to 500 calories.

Calories Burned After Exercise

One special benefit of weight lifting is that you keep burning calories even after you finish your workout. This is called excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC). After lifting weights, your body keeps burning calories as it repairs muscles and replenishes energy. This can last for several hours after your workout.

Benefits Beyond Calorie Burn

While weight lifting might not burn as many calories right away compared to cardio exercises, the long-term benefits are huge. Regular weight lifting helps build muscle, which increases your basal metabolic rate (BMR). This means you burn more calories at rest, helping with weight loss and maintenance over time.

Practical Tips

  • Use Compound Movements: Exercises like squats, deadlifts, and bench presses work multiple muscle groups, burning more calories.
  • Increase Intensity Gradually: Start with lighter weights and slowly increase the load to challenge your muscles and burn more calories.
  • Combine with Cardio: For the best results, mix weight lifting with cardio exercises to burn more calories and improve heart health.

Weight lifting isn’t just about burning calories during the workout; it’s about building a stronger, more efficient body that burns more calories even when you’re resting. Whether you want to lose weight, gain muscle, or just get fitter, adding weight lifting to your routine can be very beneficial.

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