Exercise Alone Doesn’t Work for Losing Weight

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Can you lose fat just by exercising? Read on to learn more about whether you can lose weight with exercise alone.

Can I just exercise to lose weight?

Losing weight can be a difficult task. It would be great if you could solely focus on working out and keep eating high calorie foods. However, it’s never that simple.

Researchers say that ignoring your diet and continuing to work out is a bad strategy when it comes to losing weight. In order to lose weight, it’s crucial that you burn more calories than what you consume, or eat fewer calories than what your body uses every day. Being in a caloric deficit is the only way to lose weight.

Weight loss also depends on the exercise duration, resistance, and genre. Doing cardiovascular exercises such as biking, running, walking or dancing are helpful for weight loss. However, it’s important to implement some resistance training, such as weightlifting, rock climbing, or pilates, to engage your muscles.

Despite exercise playing an important role in burning energy, increasing muscle mass, and weight loss, it’s not the be all and end all.

While all of the calories, aka energy, we gain comes from the food we eat, we only burn off 10%–30% of that through exercise each day. The amount of exercise you do, sets off many changes to your physiology, such as how many calories you need to eat, and how many you’ll burn. This is highly variable between people and depends on many factors, not just how far they run or how many sit-ups they do.

Exercise alone isn’t helpful for losing weight

A number of long term research studies have found that an individual’s amount of energy expenditure has no correlation with weight loss. We have long been told that weight loss relies on calories in versus calories expended. To put this in perspective, a 1958 study found that in humans, a pound of fat is equivalent to 3,500 calories.

Thus, by increasing the number of calories you expend by 500 per day, through either physical activity or dietary reduction, you’d be expected to lose a pound of fat per week. Conversely, increasing the number of calories you take in every day by 500 would result in a pound of weight gained per week.

Researchers today regard this study as overly simplified and now consider human metabolism and energy as a highly adaptable and dynamic balancing act. In other words, when you alter one component of your lifestyle, such as cutting calorie intake or doing slightly more exercise, this sets off a chain of events within the body that determines the number of calories you burn and in turn, regulates the amount of weight you lose or gain.


Exercise only accounts for a small number of the calories you burn every day

Even when you aren’t working out, calories are still being burned. Calories burned by doing exercise only account for a small fragment of the calories you burn each day.

Energy expenditure, or the number of calories you burn, is determined by three main factors. These are your basal metabolic rate, the amount of energy it takes to break down your food, and the energy you expend through physical activity.

For this reason alone, it can be really difficult to put yourself in a significant calorie deficit simply by exercising.

Exercise can influence your weight loss journey in unexpected ways

Your body works in mysterious ways, and exercise can even sabotage your weight loss journey without you noticing. Doing an increased amount of exercise can make you more hungry, which may lead to you eating more calories than what you burned off while exercising in the first place. 

Research has proved that people increase the amount of food that they eat following exercise because they’re either hungrier or think they burned off more calories than they actually did. It’s easy to overestimate the amount of energy you burn doing exercise, and then eat more because of this.

A phenomenon researchers call “metabolic compensation” has been well documented. This occurs when a person’s basal metabolic rate decreases or when an individual expends less energy following a workout, for example by taking a long break after a run or taking the elevator instead of the stairs because their legs are tired.

These factors are called compensatory behaviors, which refers to the adjustments you may make unconsciously to conserve energy after a tough workout.

How can you actually lose weight?

It’s important that you use a diet in conjunction with an exercise regimen to increase your chances of losing weight.

Physical activity brings many benefits to your health, such as decreasing your risk of cardiovascular disease, stroke, diabetes, cancer, mental health issues, and dementia. It also helps improve your mood, make you sleep better, and even enhance your libido. However, exercise isn’t the silver bullet to losing weight fast.

Ensuring you eat a diet full of nutrients and vitamins while remaining in a caloric deficit is crucial to staying healthy when losing weight. The Ultra Lite Program provides you with healthy, easy to follow recipes that keep you satisfied and help you to lose weight. 

Eating while remaining in a caloric deficit while following an exercise regimen is a great way to lose weight. Using the Ultra Lite Program and eating a ketogenic diet helps the body to reset and process the foods you eat differently so that it isn’t converted into fat stored in the body.

Losing weight can be difficult and take a lot of discipline. Ultra Lite provides you with a structured yet flexible program, which is easy to stick to and will bring the results that you’re looking for!