Sunday, June 5, 2011

How to Lose Weight Plan: Why Exercise Along with Calorie Reduction Is the Key to Weight Loss

Weightloss pyramid.Image via Wikipedia
We’ve all heard that an effective how to lose weight plan must include caloric reduction along with exercise. Now, research has shown how effective this can be. An interesting study was done using monkeys to determine the difference in weight loss between a group that had a reduction in calories only and a group that combined reduction of calories with exercise. I’m sure you can guess which group was successful!

The interesting thing the researchers found was this: when they cut the caloric intake of the monkeys, their activity level declined. This appears to be a function of the reduction in calories, a natural defense mechanism of the body during times of scarcity. The monkeys who only had a reduction in calories lost no weight at all. Their bodies compensated for the fewer calories by slowing down their activity levels.

The second group of monkeys was trained to run on a treadmill for an hour every day along with having a reduction in calories. These monkeys did lose weight. So what is the lesson for humans who are trying to lose five, ten or twenty pounds? It means you might have to make a bit of an effort to maintain or increase your activity levels when you start dieting.

As you work on reducing calories by eating smaller portions of food and closely watching calories in everything you eat, you will want to make an exercise plan that will be easy to follow. Don’t come up with activities that are inconvenient or expensive. Pick some kind of exercise that you’ll enjoy- that’s the key to sticking with it.

If you love nature, find a park with hiking trails and walk one to three miles at least three times a week, preferably every day. If you love dancing, just turn on the stereo and dance in the living room every day for 30 minutes or more. Get the bicycle out of the garage and take a daily bike ride. Buy a new leash for the dog and take a mile walk once in the morning and once in the evening. Your dog will love it!

Although this study confirms what we all guessed- you have to combine exercise and diet to lose weight- it explains why it is so important. So, as part of your how to lose weight plan, make sure you are eating clean and getting your exercise. If you do this, those excess pounds will begin to really drop off!

Train Hard! You Can Achieve Success!
Monique Hawkins

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