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This is What 5 Pounds of Muscle vs 5 Pounds of Fat Looks Like

Here is a picture of five pounds of muscle versus one 5 pounds of fat. Amazing, isn’t it? My big question to you is: which would you rather have?

This is What One Pound of Muscle vs One Pound of Fat Looks LikePin
fat vs muscle

Many of us already know the benefits of strength training. Wonderful things like improved posture, increased metabolism, potential decreased risk of injury, increased bone density and increased strength are just a few of the side effects. I think many women feel that they have to be in a gym setting lifting heavy weights in order to strength train. I’d like to use this space to bust a few myths if I may…

Many of my clients tell me they don’t want to lift weights because they don’t want to get big muscles. Please refer back to the picture above. My friends, muscle is very dense and will actually take up less space, hence giving you a smaller appearance. You will not get big by strength training (please repeat this 3x).

5 Pounds of Muscle vs 5 Pounds of Fat

Please take another look at the picture. The muscle and fat are very different cells. One cannot be turned into another. You cannot convert fat to muscle or muscle to fat. You have a certain number of fat cells (these are determined in utero, during the first year of life and during adolescence – hence the importance for our children to be eating healthy as well as eating healthy during the prenatal period. Once these number of cells are determine, they can either get bigger or smaller, not disappear.

Nutrition is very important when it comes to fat loss and changing your aesthetics. I do not recommend any sort of diet. If you can pick it, kill it, grow it, dig it or harvest it and it can spoil, chances are it’s great for you. If it comes in a box, contains ingredients you can’t pronounce, is fluorescent in colour and takes months to spoil, chances are it’s not an ideal food. Eating healthy is healthy. Ketosis, zero carbs, shakes all day and low calorie diets are not healthy. Eating healthy is healthy.

So how do we go about this? If you’re stuck and need some guidance, hire a professional. Joining a class can also help with motivation. Starting with a few exercises every other day or so can have huge payoffs. A few push ups, some squats and some planks and presto, a strength workout! Consistency is key, even if you’re doing a handful of exercises, you will see results when doing them regularly.

 Here is a great clip of some exercises you can do with your baby as a weight:

YouTube video

Here is a video of a few exercises you can even do with items found in your kitchen


Enjoy and happy strength training !

Sarah Zahab

Photo Credit: Sarah Zahab

Sarah is a Certified Kinesiologist, Exercise Physiologist, Group Fitness Instructor and Mother of 2. She is the creator of the Prenatal and Postnatal Strength Workout DVD (available at www.sarahzahab.ca) as well as co-created the Elemental Workout®. Sarah owns Continuum Fitness and Movement Performance with her husband, John (www.continuumfitness.ca), a personal training studio in Westboro, Ottawa offering one on one coaching as well as group classes. Sarah is a former international fitness competitor and has been a nationally ranked race walker.

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  1. I vividly remember when I started doing weight exercises on machines on a regular basis, hoping to loose weight – I actually put on 4lbs in a month because my muscles were much better toned and no it didn’t look like I was a weight lifter either 🙂

  2. Wow! The difference is amazing! I always thought muscle weighted more then fat. I just started exercising again, I’m motivated.


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