As many of us struggle to fulfill our New Year's resolutions to lose weight and get fit, a new study suggests that aerobic exercise may work better than resistance training to get rid of the extra pounds.
The study, which is published in the Journal of Applied Psychology, is believed to be the first to compare the effectiveness of these two types of exercise in previously overweight or obese adults.
Researchers from universities in North Carolina recruited a total of 234 adults aged 18-70 who had previously been overweight or obese to participate in either aerobic training, resistance training or a combination of the two for eight months.
They found that the groups who did either aerobic training or a combination of aerobic and resistance training lost more weight and increased lean body mass more than the group that did only resistance training.
This doesn't mean that resistance training is bad – just that it should not be the only thing you do if you want to lose fat and gain lean muscle mass. The researchers also said that resistance training is most effective for strengthening muscles.