Thursday, 30 September 2010
You can't do it with exercise alone
It is no surprise that I have been trying to shed some k(e)gs. I have an easier relationship with exercise than I do with food, so when I try to lose weight I generally start by increasing my activity.
I have been putting a fair bit of time into being more active, but my weight loss has been pretty slow. It has been a bit disheartening to be honest, so I decided to do a little research into the relationship between exercise and weight loss.
Firstly, the thing I found out is that you could only expect to lose about 150g a week from exercise alone. It takes a lot of exercise to shift even a small amount of weight.
So why should we bother? Why is exercising 'the right thing to do'?
Well, physical activity does burn kilojoules (KJ) - and those extra kilojoules will help you lose weight over time.
You will also be more likely to keep weight off if you exercise. Almost all successful dieters say that part of their success comes from exercise. On average they burn an extra 10,500KJ a week being active*,
And finally, being physically active has been shown to improve your mental outlook and boost self-confidence, both of which make it easier to stick to a diet.
So my take home message this week is: Don't stop exercising because you're not losing weight. Stay active and take another look at your diet (it always comes down to what we put in our mouths doesn't it?)
So this week I will be monitoring what I drink to make sure I am not wasting all that hard work on 'empty' KJs in the form of sweetened drinks like soft drinks, sports drinks or sugary tea or coffee, and readjusting my serving sizes to make sure they aren't getting bigger again without me realising.
* Source: Change One - The Breakthrough 12-Week Eating Plan by John Hastings