Increased muscle mass and significant weight loss really is possible with yoga. As part of my ongoing quest for new ways to meet my own potential, I investigated yoga with some surprising findings. From martial artists to the elderly, everyone can get great fat burning, and lean muscle building results from this often neglected form of exercise.
If you want to increase your muscle building capacity you know it’s important to train hard and eat right, but you also need a lifestyle that affords plenty of sleep for recuperation.
On top of all that you need to free your mind of stress too. Only when mind, body and soul come together can you truly tap into your body’s fitness potential. With today’s hectic lifestyles, stresses at the office can dampen motivation and keep you awake at night. That’s why many people are turning to forms of exercise that don’t just get the blood flowing, but take care of the ‘old noggin’ too.
One such discipline that challenges users both mentally and physically is yoga, and you’d be amazed who’s doing it in 2013!
Yoga became popular in the Western world in the 80’s and since then various systems, DVD’s and books have hit gyms and stores. Along the way yoga picked up its own image and many people, to this day, see it as “nothing more than a group of people in leg warmers getting together for light exercise while babbling about spirituality”. It’s a stereotype that limits many people’s understanding of what they can achieve!
In yoga the only weight you lift is your own. By completing a routine of stretches and movements that rely on the push and pull between your own muscle groups, yoga has many incredible benefits including:
- Raises heart rate - making it both a great cardio and fat burning workout
- Works the muscles fully, but in a low impact way that doesn’t stress the joints as much as weight training
- Increases cognitive function, coordination, and balance
- Greater flexibility, reduced tension, and stress
What a set of benefits! When your body is relaxed and you get good sleep, cortisol levels are reduced and growth hormone levels are increased. In other words: Yoga is a great way to burn fat AND gain muscle either as a standalone routine, or complimented with other forms of exercise.