Weight Loss Exercises
Weight loss exercises should relate exercise and fat loss in three ways.
These ways treat the underlying causes of excess body fat.
This will result in real weight loss that will last!
Failing to treat the underlying cause is a symptomatic approach to weight loss. At best, it brings only temporary fat loss.
More often, it leads to exhaustion from riding the weight roller coaster up and down.
So, what is needed to restore balance?
The balance of a comprehensive approach
The trinity of exercises needed to restore balance are:
You will find the direct link to that section listed on our site map/index.
You will find the direct links to those pages listed on our site map/index.
3. Physical exercises, in particular, how you eat, exercise, and recover from exercise. See our pages:
3. strength/weight training.
You will find the direct links to those pages listed on our site map/index.
This is why the statistic for the five-year cure rate for being too heavy is close to zero.
If you have tried a weight loss or physical training program and failed to achieve lasting benefits, try not to be discouraged. The common mistake is trying to improve oneself physically without supporting oneself on other levels by applying psychological and spiritual weight loss exercises.
It's a mistake to think of one's physical self as being in a separate compartment from one's psychological or spiritual well-being. In other words, supporting how you think and how you focus are necessary when using physical weight loss exercises.
No dieting with good weight loss exercises
How you think and focus are crucial when attempting to improve yourself physically. There's no better illustration of this than dieting. Many people force themselves to go on starvation diets and do achieve temporary weight reductions.
In a few weeks or months when they go off the diet, however, they typically regain at least all the weight they lost. Moreover, many people regain more weight than they lost.
There's only about a 1 in 50 chance that the weight loss will last for five years. In terms of permanent weight loss, the truth is that, by themselves, diets fail.
Weight loss is not the same as fat loss. People can be of normal weight and yet be too fat for health. What counts is the ratio of muscle to fat. Is your body weight, for example, 30% fat or 15% fat? There's a big difference in body composition between the two.
Muscle tissue is denser than fatty tissue. This is why trim athletes with a relatively low percentage of body fat can look smaller and yet weigh more than fatty non-athletes. A pound of muscle takes up less volume than a pound of fat.
Here's a critical point: muscle is about three dozen times more active metabolically than fat. In other words, a pound of muscle uses a lot more calories than a pound of fat. Lean muscle is a METABOLIC FURNACE.
This explains why dieting is so insidious. Suppose you go on a semi-starvation diet, lose twenty pounds, get sick of the dietary restrictions, and regain the twenty pounds. You'll not only be discouraged, which is one way you'll be worse than when you started, you'll be fatter, too.
No yo-yo effect, with weight loss exercises
When we lose weight through starvation dieting (without applying other weight loss exercises), we lose about half fat and half muscle.
Therefore, by losing 10 pounds of muscle through the forced diet, you are reducing the rate at which your body burns calories.
Worse: when you regain the twenty pounds, nearly all of it will be fat. So, at the end of this imaginary dietary cycle, although you'll weigh the same as you weighed before the diet, you'll be fatter than you were before the diet!
If you are serious about achieving your goal, strength training is not an option. The reason is that strength training (resistance training, weight lifting) builds lean muscle mass.
The more lean muscle mass you have, the metabolically more active your body will be. Lean muscle is a metabolic furnace. This means that you'll be able to eat normally and eat well without gaining body fat.
sidebar quotation from Tom Venuto: "Weight training is the only way to keep your muscle . . . Aerobics by itself doesn't cut it . . . Don't EVER plan on stopping your weight training . . ."
sidebar quotation from Jerry Brainum: "The best combination for maximum fat loss while preserving muscle mass is to reduce your total calorie intake and do weight workouts plus judicious--that is, not more than one hour at a time--aerobic training."
Calories are measures of the energy we derive from foods. If you are too fat, the reason is simple: you are out of caloric balance. You have been consuming more calories than you have been using.
Physical exercise and natural weight loss go together. By using more calories than would otherwise be used, continued exercise promotes permanent weight loss.
The best way to lose weight is to lose fat and then avoid getting too fat again.
In terms of energy: there are only two methods: one is to decrease the calories consumed and the other is to increase the calories used.
The best way to create a caloric deficit is to use both methods. However, since increasing the energy used is healthier, more efficient, and longer lasting, it's more important to increase the energy used than to decrease the calories consumed. This is why strength exercise and permanent weight loss cannot be separated. This is why strength training is not really an option.
When you think "physical exercise and weight loss", please think of reducing your percentage of body fat in a lasting way by increasing the energy you use. The ways to increase the calories you use are through regular strength training, regular fitness training that is intense, and eating well.
We recommend twice-a-week strength training (for about 30 or 40 minutes each time) and 2 or, better, 3 intense fitness workouts (for 20 minutes or less each time) each week. That's less than 2 hours of exercise weekly. If you want more exercise, add in a 30 to 60 minute brisk walk (or other mild fitness exercise).
If you do that and eat well, you will reduce your percentage of body fat in a lasting way. We specify exactly how to eat well on some of the other pages of this website.
Eating well has nothing to do with starvation dieting. Once you are eating well, exercising well, and recovering well, you'll probably be able to consume, on a sustained basis, more calories than you are presently consuming!
It is not unusual for strength athletes (including women) to consume 3000, 4000, or even 5000 or more calories daily!
Consider this from the other end. What is an adequate number of calories for the average man or woman? If you are a man getting less than 2300 calories daily or a woman getting less than 2100 calories daily, the World Health Organization considers you to be starving!
Like us, you probably know lots of men and women who—in a misguided effort to become trimmer—are getting less than 1800 or even 1500 calories daily. Such starvation diets cause psychological problems, such as depression, and physical problems, such as turning off the thyroid gland. Again, diets simply don't work to achieve permanent weight loss.
The answer is to eat well, exercise well, and recover well.
sidebar quotation from Thomas Jefferson: "Not less than two hours a day should be devoted to exercise, and the weather should be little regarded. I speak this from experience, having made this arrangement of my life. If the body is feeble, the mind will not be strong."
There are no single nutritional plan or weight loss exercises that will work excellently for every individual.
However, assuming you are healthy, we provide you with guidelines for individualizing a nutritional plan and weight loss exercises plan that will work excellently for you.
Fortunately, we have role models to emulate. There's no need to figure out what works for ourselves. We already understand what works: eating well, exercising well, and recovering well.
Natural (in other words, drug free) fitness models, fitness athletes, and bodybuilders show us what to do to achieve permanent weight loss.
Weight loss attitude
Let's begin by ensuring that you are thinking well about, and have a good attitude about, physical exercise.
Do you even hate the thought of working out? Does the thought of pumping iron or going for a brisk walk make you want to lie down on the sofa?
If so, let's being to improve your attitude by admitting that physical pain is unavoidable. Anyone who is lucky enough to live long enough will experience some debilitating effects of aging. Sooner or later everyone gets ill. The question, then, does not concern whether or not we are going to experience physical pain.
The question only concerns the best way to experience it. Why not begin by adopting Frank Zane's attitude?
sidebar quotation from Frank Zane: "We have a choice as we age: don't exercise and suffer the physical liability of aging against your will, or exercise and consciously choose how you suffer."
Web pages related to weight loss exercises
Since it's better to have as much control as possible, since freedom always beats slavery, let's adopt his attitude.
Let's get to it then!
To get you started you may first want to learn about all the physical weight loss exercises on our:
Our recommended books for this page
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