Why you need to get stronger: focussing on body composition instead of weight loss

There is often a lot of debate and sometimes confusion over what method is the best for weight loss – and that’s totally normal, especially if you’re new to the world of health and fitness. But I’d like to challenge this viewpoint: why do we have to choose just one?

Strength training is one of the absolute best ways to promote fat loss when programmed correctly and coupled with an intelligent nutrition program. 

Let’s dive a little deeper…

What are the benefits of strength training? 

From a basic standpoint, strength training will help you lose weight and feel/look better IF you do two key things:

  • Calorie Concentration: consistently managing your calorie intake, every week
  • Strength Training: Great technique with progressive overload (lifting heavier each time)

You can’t be blamed for thinking that eating less and training more is the best way to lose weight but think of it this way; in order to hit the weights you need to progress, your body needs ‘fuel’ –  the correct amount of caloric intake to enable you to achieve in the gym. So, in many cases, you may well need to eat more than you do currently, to achieve the kind of growth and repair your muscles need to keep up with your training regime.

Just by doing the two things above (nailing your calories and progressing your weight load), the magic of strength training will start to shape your body! 

But wait, there’s more…

Can I strength train for weight loss?

This is an important question, and one that we come across time and time again – which is why it’s such a big part of every session that takes place at The PT Centre. Let’s answer this big question by going back to basics:

Fat and muscle are two different things – one cannot transform into the other. We all have plenty of muscle right now (otherwise we wouldn’t be able to do the things we need to, to conduct our daily lives). The muscle we do have is just hiding under a layer of body fat. So, in order for us to lose weight and feel better, we want to do two primary things:

  1. Build our muscles to be stronger and tighter
  2. Burn off the fat that sits on top of it

Guess what? Both of these things will happen simultaneously through strength training. And, NO, you don’t need to lose weight before you start strength training.

To put it another way, you DO NOT need to do hours and hours of cardio for weight loss – losing weight is largely a result of your nutrition and the focus you give to the growth and repair of your muscles.

Let’s put theory into practice and set out an example workout to help you to build strength:

Progression example

Bench press

Week 1: 


3 sets of 6-8 reps 

Tempo 3-0-1-0

90-120 seconds rest 

Week 2: 


3 sets of 6-8 reps 

Tempo 3-0-1-0

90-120 seconds rest 

Week 3: 


3 sets of 6-8 reps 

Tempo 3-0-1-0

90-120 seconds rest

Week 4: 


3 sets of 6-8 reps 

Tempo 3-0-1-0

90-120 seconds rest

We’ve got a unique mindset at The PT Centre – here’s a different angle to think about; did you know that strength training can also help decrease your stress and anxiety levels? Many of us live with feeling stressed out, anxious in our everyday lives – this needn’t be the case.

Progressive weight training will help you to switch over from a stressed and tired state to a more euphoric, relaxed one; you’ll feel better, approach stressful situations differently and even sleep better too.

To finish up, when most of us think of traditional cardio, we think of slogging it out on a boring treadmill or exercise bike for ages and ages but it doesn’t have to be this way! Take a look at strength training, try out our suggested workout or even drop us a message to find out how we can help you on your weight loss journey. 

Honestly, you don’t need to set foot on a treadmill again – unless you want to of course.