Turn on the TV, radio, or take a look at most any magazine and chances are you will see or hear something to do with weight loss. People all over the world, especially in America, have become increasingly overweight throughout the years and this trend seems to be continuing despite so many efforts to lose weight.
Everywhere you look there is a new diet plan, new ways to exercise or some miracle product available designed to help you lose weight fast and easy. However, the majority of these don’t do anything but waste your time.
The key to losing weight is a healthy diet and a good exercise program that’s suited for your body. It sounds simple, but it’s a lot harder to do than it seems. For this reason, many people try to take short cuts by taking diet pills, adhering to a strict diet or literally starving themselves in an attempt to lose a few pounds.
Exercise is often left out of the picture because in general, people want fast results so they’re searching for that quick fix. If they can take a pill or monitor what they eat and lose weight, this saves them time that they don’t have to spend exercising.
The problem is that most diet pills and many diets are a waste of time because even though you may lose weight, you’re not losing it in a healthy way. This can actually make matters worse by causing serious health problems and that is where exercise fits in.
There are No Shortcuts
There are no shortcuts, magic pills or miracle diets available when it comes to losing weight. It requires dedication, determination and a real effort. It starts with a healthy nutritious diet combined with a good exercise plan designed especially for you. Then it takes persistence and a real desire to put forth the effort needed to drop those pounds.
If you try to take shortcuts, you may lose weight but you can damage your body in the process. For example, if you go on a starvation diet your body begins using all of the nutrients stored in your body to keep it alive. These nutrients along with all of the energy you receive from them will be used to keep your heart, lungs and other essential organs functioning properly.
When your body no longer has any fat reserves left to feed on due to the diet you’re using, your muscle tissue will start to reduce. As a result, you’ll lose weight but you’re damaging your body in the process. At first, you may begin to feel extra tired and irritable but eventually, your organs can even begin to shut down.
How Exercise Helps You Lose Weight
Now that you know exercise is needed to help you lose weight, it’s important to know how it helps you. Exercising works your muscles, which require energy to work correctly. This energy comes from the sugars found in your bloodstream.
Eventually, if you exercise long enough, the muscles will use up all of the sugars in the bloodstream and the body will need to replenish it by taking it from the fats stored in your body. When this happens, you’re burning calories. The muscles are getting the energy they need to function correctly and you begin to lose weight.
The best part is that your body still burns calories while you sleep because the muscles are working to repair themselves to get ready for the next workout. This requires energy, which comes from the fat stores and this means that you are still burning calories. The more calories you burn, the more weight you lose.
The more you exercise the toner your muscles become. As a result, you’ll lose weight but you won’t have to deal with the flabby skin that some people deal with when they lose weight too fast through crash diets. You’ll look beautiful and feel great. It’s a real esteem builder.
Which Exercises Should You Do to Lose Weight
It’s important to know that only a professional with experience in weight loss through exercise can tell you which ones to do to lose weight. This is because there is no one particular set of exercises suited for every person. It depends on many different things such as how much weight you need to lose, your age, how long it’s been since you last exercised and your overall health.
You’ll need to create an exercise routine that is suited for you personally and something that you will actually do. For example, there is no need to get a membership to the gym if in reality you know you won’t go. Instead, look for ways to get exercise that you can enjoy. For example, if you enjoy dancing, look for a dance routine you can do designed for weight loss.
Bicycling and swimming are two more ways to burn calories in a fun way. Other options include walking, jogging, running and step aerobics. Yoga is also a good option for many people. If it’s been a long time since you last exercised, you can start off by doing things around the house like work in a garden, mow the lawn with a push mower or spend a few minutes a day playing games with the kids.
When you’re not used to exercising, you don’t want to start out full force. This can do more harm than good. Instead, choose light, simple exercises such as walking and swimming that will give your body time to build up and get used to doing something. Then, gradually add more strenuous types of exercises to your routine.
You should also begin slowly by spending about 10 to 15 minutes performing the exercise, regardless of what you choose to do. After you have become comfortable with the exercises you choose, then you can begin picking up the pace. For example, instead of walking, switch to a light jog or go further distances. You do need to push yourself but stay at a rate that is comfortable for you. Never try to keep up with someone else.
Always warm up before exercising to prevent straining your muscles. You also want to drink plenty of water before and after your workout to avoid becoming dehydrated.
Keep in mind that as your muscles tone, they gain mass and since muscles weigh more than fat does, you may not notice a difference in your actual weight at first. You may only lose a couple of pounds, weigh the same or even gain a few pounds so don’t let this discourage you. There will be a noticeable difference in the way you look and the way your clothes fit and that is what’s most important.
Some exercises are designed to build muscle mass and add weight. These are the type of exercise bodybuilders do and not what you’re looking for when you’re just trying to lose weight and tone up your body. Weightlifting is one example. Take time to learn about the different exercises so you can find the ones that suit you the best.
If you’re not sure what type of exercises to do or how to get started, you can seek the help of a professional. There are many programs and experts available that can help you design the exercise program that is best suited for your body, age and overall physical health.
The role exercise for weight loss plays in your life is a dramatic one. You can’t lose weight and stay healthy without it. In addition, exercise has many other benefits, too. You will look better, feel better and have more energy than ever before.