I can’t tell you how many times I have heard people who want to get into shape say they’re going to turn their fat into muscle. Well, unless you’re a magician or a hocus-pocus specialist, you can’t turn fat into muscle just like you can’t turn water into oil or a cat into a dog.
Muscle and fat are different types of tissue. Muscle is commonly referred to as “lean muscle” because it takes up less space on the body than fat tissue – about 18% less space to be precise. Fat tissue – as known as – Body fat – just kinda sits on us like a big, yellow blob. This is one of the reasons I’m always telling people who want to lose weight to weight train but that’s another story.
So where does the confusion come from?
When you add lean muscle tissue to your body by strength training (or resistance training if that sounds better to you) – you increase your RMR (resting metabolic rate) – the biggest component of your metabolism.
The more muscle you possess on your body → the higher your metabolism → the more fat your body burns → the leaner and tighter you look → period
So because you’re adding lean muscle tissue and burning body fat, it may seem as if you’re “turning” fat into muscle, but you’re not – you are “burning” more fat off your body by adding calorie-consuming muscle which gives you a leaner appearance.
Think of it this way – remember that old Atari game Pacman?
Muscle is Pacman. It goes around eating up those little white dots we can compare to body fat cells.
By the way, the opposite is also right – when we become out of shape, our muscles don’t become fat – we just wind up losing muscle and gaining fat.
Hope this clears that myth up!