Strength training is a must whether your goal is to lower your body fat percentage or build lean muscle. Weightlifting burns more calories than cardio, and due to the demand placed on your muscles, you end up burning calories all day long.
Personal trainer Bret Contreras, CSCS, PhD, Sports Science, explained in an Instagram post that if you want to build muscle and lose fat, you should be lifting weights. He captioned his top 10 fat-burning, muscle-building exercises with the following message: "if you want to to be lean AND look good, you need muscle."
Bret compared two identical twins whose goal was to get leaner. They both weighed 200 pounds, had 20 percent body fat, and followed the same diet. Twin A lifted weights and put on 10 pounds of muscle in a year, his weight never changed, and his body fat decreased to 15 percent. Twin B did a variety of workouts like HIIT and gained only four pounds of muscle over the year and had a two percent decrease in body fat. The difference in the twins' body composition came down to how they were training, and Brett explained that "whether you're eating at a caloric surplus, maintenance, or deficit, the exercises that best build muscles are the exercises that will help you improve your physique."