Spot reduction refers to the concept of reducing fat in specific area of the body through exercise. Spot reduction claims have been around a very long time...and have remained popular despite the lack of results. It seems like it should work, right? But then, it seems like the earth is flat. ("Look! There's the edge!") So why is there still so much confusion about this?
Results of a new study (Neither load nor systemic hormones determine resistance training-mediated hypertrophy or strength gains in resistance-trained young men) were released recently leading to plenty of media coverage with headlines like these:
Lifting Lighter Weights Can Be Just as Effective as Heavy Ones
Lifting Lighter Weights Is Just As Effective As Heavy Weights
Lighter weights just as effective as heavier weights to gain muscle, build strength
- New Study Finds Lifting Lighter Weights as Beneficial
New McMaster study says you can lift small and get big
It's nice to have strength training in the news, and most of the coverage hits the highlights, but it also tends to be rather misleading. Let's take a closer look.
What got me thinking about this (again) was an article entitled 12 Workout Myths That Just Need To Die. It's not a bad article, but Myth #2 includes this: "...having more lean muscle will help your body burn more calories at rest."
Of course, right? Well, sort of.