FOUNDATIONAL HEALTH SERIES:
Do you want to lose weight?
Do you want to keep it off forever once you lose it?
Do you want to be happier, less stressed, and have more energy?
The ANSWER is consistent exercise.
Let’s look at what the research says about exercise:
American College of Nutrition on Long Term Weight Loss Maintenance: People who lost at least 10% of their body weight and kept it off for more than 2 years exercised an average of AN HOUR a day.
National Academy of Sports Nutrition’s “Appropriate Physical Activity Intervention Strategies for Weight Loss and Prevention of Weight Gain”:
- 150-250 minutes (2.5 to 4+ hours) of moderate intensity is associated with only modest weight loss. Greater than 250 minutes (4 hours) a week of vigorous activity produced better results.
- Greater than 250 minutes (4+ hours) per week of moderate to vigorous activity shows positive evidence of preventing weight gain.
I have a lot of clients that want to lose weight, but they won’t commit to the exercise at this level. Guess what? It’s not an option. Plans and diets don’t work long term without consistent exercise. You will gain all the weight and health problems back without exercise.
Benefits of Exercise
- A healthy outlet for toxic stress
- Improves mood and balances brain chemicals
- Builds lean body mass which burns fat all day long
- Community and socializing with others in a positive environment (group exercise, running groups, and classes are GREAT for socializing and staying motivated)
- Lowers inflammation in the body
- Aids in weight loss and weight maintenance
Tips for Becoming a Consistent Exerciser
- Start off slow and build up. If you are not exercising at all, start with 2 days a week EVERY week for 2-3 weeks and add one session a week every 3 weeks until you get to the 150-250 minutes a week.
- Exercise should be on your calendar, already planned out for the week. It doesn’t just happen — you need to make it happen.
- The most consistent exercisers I know work out in the morning. The earlier in the day you plan your exercise, the more likely you will do it.
- Try different group classes. Some great options are Crossfit, Orange Theory Fitness, Bikram Yoga, Spin, Zumba, and Body Pump.
- Start with something you already enjoy. Do you like to dance? Try Zumba. Ride a bike? Take a spin class. Sports? Join a basketball team or a tennis league.
Consistent and vigorous exercise is a must for being healthy, lean, and energetic. You can learn to like exercise, but in the beginning, you might need to do it because it’s good for you. Eventually, it turns into a habit and you will wonder what you ever did without it!