Posts tagged with : diet exercise
Five Reasons Why “Diet or Exercise?” Is a Dumb Question
We’ve all heard of the die-hard exercise buff that can’t seem to lose any weight, and many of us have also heard of extreme dieters that suffer from the same affliction. The question, “What’s more important, diet or exercise?” is one that plenty of people ask themselves, but here’s the simple answer: it’s the wrong question! Changing your diet will help you lose more weight than exercise, but exercise helps you in ways dieting can’t.
The better question is, “How can I balance diet and exercise to improve my life?” Here are some ideas:
- Focus on Food First. A lot of people who are just starting to be concerned with their fitness think that the tried and true plan for getting fit is to run on a treadmill every day. And that’s it. But changing your diet will almost certainly account for most of the weight loss you experience throughout your life. Focusing on exercise alone doesn’t make much sense: a fast-food cheeseburger is worth about as many calories as most people would burn after about 4.5 miles of running.
- Quit Thinking of Exercise as “Burning Calories.” If you think of exercise as conditioning your body so that you can do what you want, live longer, and be happier, you’ll be more likely to try new exercises like weight training. You’ll also be more confident in your progress. Once you know you’re not going to burn off that cheesecake at the gym, you can focus on improving your performance instead.
- Keep Track of Yourself. Knowing that healthy eating choices affect your weight and fitness more than your gym time makes what you eat even more important. So important that you might just want to keep track of it. Studies have shown that people that keep a food journal lose more weight than those who don’t. Keeping an exercise journal is a good idea too.
- Personalize Your Plan. Not everyone needs to lose weight. If you are more worried about muscle weakness and cardiovascular health than weight loss, feel free to focus more on your gym time than your dinner table. Of course, that doesn’t mean you should ignore your diet.
- Rethink Weight Training. Your body is constantly burning energy already, but as you add even small amounts of muscle, you will burn many more calories. Adding even light weight training to your routine could give you quite a bit of leeway with your diet which—let’s be honest—makes life a lot more fun.
So, there you have it. Even though diet changes are more beneficial than exercise for weight loss, they’re incomplete without that gym time. So eat right, work out, and have fun!