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The Facts About Fitness and Losing Weight

By: Michael Winter

The Facts About Fitness and Losing Weight

Fitness and Weight Loss are hot topics at the moment, and there is so much information out there that it can be difficult to determine what is true. So, the following list details the five most important fitness facts you should know that will help you reach your goals. This list will help you to better understand how your body works, and what your body goes through to get fit and lose weight.

1. The secret to burning fat or getting fit is in increasing your metabolism. An increase in metabolism allows your body to perform normal body processes faster, burning more energy. Increases in metabolism are permanent, (to the extent that they will continue beyond your workout). This in turn, leads to higher energy levels, and a greater ability to burn body fat not only while you are working out, but also while you are sitting still, sleeping, or watching television.

2. Cardiovascular activity is the best way to burn body fat. Fitness products that claim that you can lose weight off one part of your body, (for example, flattening your stomach), are misleading. The only way you can get fit, lose weight, or improve your health is to engage in cardiovascular activity 3-4 times a week. Cardio increases your heart rate, burning more energy, and over time will increase your metabolism. You will notice your resting heart rate decrease as a result of this. Doing weights or other non cardiovascular exercises will allow your body to increase metabolism by increasing the blood flow to your large muscle groups, however, it will not allow you to lose weight off one part of your body. It will simply improve your chances of reducing overall body fat.

3. Nutrition is a vital part of weight loss and fitness. Like a car, your body is a machine. It needs fuel to perform its activities, and if it is well looked after, will serve you well and last for a long time. The fuel you put in your body is an essential part of looking after it. Eating the right foods at the right times will allow your body to perform the activities it needs to as best it can. If you think of your body in this way, it does not make sense to eat food merely for enjoyment. Eating foods like chips and chocolate doesn’t really make sense, because they don’t provide your body with anything valuable. In fact, too much fat can be damaging to your heart and blood vessels. And if you fill up on these foods, you are likely to not have room for the foods that your body really needs. Of course, you are human, and humans are allowed to indulge once in a while. But when you do, remember that what you are putting into your body is of very little value to you as a machine, and is simply for your own immediate gratification. On the other hand, not eating at all will deprive your body of everything, your metabolism will plummet, (which does NOT aid in weight loss), and you will have no energy.

4. Calorie counting is misleading. Many people want to limit their intake of calories in order to lose weight. This is fine, as long as they are well informed. First of all, one gram of fat has nine calories, whereas the same amount of protein or carbohydrates has only four. So you can intake more than twice as much in protein and carbohydrates than you can in fat and still accumulate the same in calories. Second, there are significant differences between men and women in calorie intakes. Per pound of body weight, (a pound is 2.2 kilos), a women needs 12 calories a day to maintain the same body weight, (exclusive of any exercise program). A man needs 15. This means that a women of the same size as a man will store 3 calories more per pound of body weight. And that’s if you don’t overeat at all! There are many complexities surrounding calorie counting. I prefer to follow four simple rules. 1) Set a daily fat level. A general rule of thumb for weight loss is twenty grams per day for a female, and forty grams per day for a male. This means you need to read labels! 2) Eat your biggest meal at lunchtime, and never miss breakfast. For lunch eat pasta or rice with very low fat sauces, (better prepared yourself), and then just a sandwich or soup for dinner. 3) Keep moving. After you eat, don’t sit and watch television, or stay at your desk. Take a ten minute walk at lunch, and do some washing up, or take the dog for a walk after dinner – just don’t sit still! Your metabolism is temporarily slowing down after you eat to process your food properly, so being sedentary will only make you feel sluggish, and will not help to digest your food any quicker. 4) Burn more than you eat. If you insist on counting your calories, and you are using cardio machine as part of your workout, the machine will tell you how many calories you are burning.

5. You should expect to lose 0.5-1.0 kilograms every two weeks. That’s if you eat properly, and if you stick to your program. Don’t expect any more than this. This also depends on your metabolism and body type. This is a healthy rate for weight loss – quick fix solutions don’t work! Have patience, and you will reach your goals and stay there!

Added: 19-12-2017