For most of us, our primary goal for exercising is to lose weight. But did you know…weight loss can be achieved by diet changes alone but NOT by exercise alone.
So why bother exercising? Why bother listening to your Let Fit Happen trainer annoyingly tell you to push harder during HIIT or eek out one more pushup during Tone & Tighten? Why not just diet??
You could do that. You could pack up your workout videos and exercise mat and tell your trainer “see ya”, “Bye Felicia” and focus solely on eating a healthy diet. And you would get healthier and lose weight.
BUT…you’d also be “packing up” ALL of the benefits of regular exercise/physical activity including (but NOT limited to):
Preventing/reducing/managing health issues
- Depression and anxiety
- Memory loss, Alzheimer’s disease, dementia
- Many types of cancer
- High blood pressure
- Type 2 diabetes
- And the list goes on…
We’re all a bit more bummed out and stressed out than usual given what’s going on in the world right now. Exercise stimulates various brain chemicals that may leave you feeling happier, more relaxed and less anxious by increasing “feel good’ hormones (e.g., endorphins) flowing through your body.
Setting, working on and achieving goals helps build a sense of personal accomplishment. And who doesn’t feel more confident after reaching a goal!
Having trouble catching your breath climbing the stairs to your front door or after vacuuming the house? Exercise delivers oxygen and nutrients to your tissues and increases your cardiovascular health. And when your heart and lungs are healthier, you have more energy to tackle daily chores and enjoy life.
Revving up the sex life
Too tired for a little “rendezvous” with your partner? Along with boosting energy and confidence achieving goals, exercise can increase your confidence about your physical appearance, which may boost your sex life. For us ladies, regular exercise may enhance arousal. And for you guys, you’re likely to have fewer problems “raising the flag pole” and keeping it up.
Building muscle/Burning fat
And of course, regular exercise/physical activity helps build muscle and burn body fat, helping you get leaner and more toned.
BEWARE: Dieting Danger
While cutting out junk food and switching to a healthy diet will help you lose weight, calorie-reduced dieting alone (without regular exercise/physical activity) will also likely cause you to lose muscle. Research suggests that of the total weight lost by dieters, at least 35% is often lost muscle . Whoa, 35% is a lot!! So, let’s say you went on a calorie-reduced diet and you lost 30 lbs, at least 10 lbs or MORE is due to lost muscle!
When you lose muscle, you lose strength and stamina which could make performing everyday activities (e.g. carrying groceries, playing with your dogs or kids, walking up stairs, etc…) more difficult.
You want to be lean, trim and STRONG not lean, trim and WEAK!
To be the leanest, strongest, healthiest version of YOU (mentally and physically), practice regular exercise/physical activity (especially consider HIITand resistance training) AND eat a healthy diet. And while your Let Fit Happen trainer is prodding you to do one last plank up-down or you’re reading her latest blog post telling you to “put the chips away”, remind yourself…
You’re doing all this to be healthy, lean and strong. This isn’t a temporary thing, it’s a lifestyle.
Stay healthy y’all.