The desire to lose a few pounds or a lot of weight is something that is a concern, need, and desire for thousands of people worldwide. In the United States, there is a very serious obesity issue that needs to be addressed and handled. While there are many diets available for those that want to slim down, most are just overhyped temporary solutions that few can stick with long term. And, of course, the key to any successful weight loss plan is the results it delivers on a permanent basis.
Exercise is an absolute must for durable weight loss. We hear it every day how you need to add physical activity to the slimming equation if you wish to lose weight in a healthy way and if you want to keep it off, but it is difficult to find out about the exact amount of exercise necessary to create the calorie deficit that will eventually lead to weight loss.
In what follows, we will present a few guidelines on how to evaluate your workout needs and how to calculate how much exercise is indeed necessary to shed all those unwanted pounds and keep them off.
Any calculation of this kind is supposed to start with a definition of the weight loss goals expressed in a scheduled time frame reported to the weight you want to lose. Healthy weight loss does not happen overnight, as your body needs time to adjust to the slimming diet and to the increased physical activity as well, so you need to be realistic when setting your goals.
The right pace of healthy weight loss is 1/2 kg per week. In order to lose 1 pound of fat per week with physical exercise, you need to burn around 3,500-4,000 calories over your normal weekly calorie burn rate. A person weighing 100 kg will need to do about 90 minutes of brisk walking or 35 minutes of jogging or 40 minutes of cycling a day to burn this amount of calories.
However, the calculation becomes more complicated if we consider other factors that influence the efficiency of exercise. Individual factors like levels of energy and fitness, metabolism, age, gender, and motivation are all important components that cannot be disregarded when creating an efficient exercise plan for optimal weight loss.
As some exercises burn more calories than others, the type of physical activity included in your workout plan also determines the amount necessary to lose the same amount of weight.
However complicated these calculations may be, there are still a few general guidelines that you can stick to, especially if you are a newcomer in the world of training. Half an hour of moderate, not too strenuous physical activity should be enough to get you started as a beginner.
You will notice the beneficial effects of sustained exercise very soon, which will also allow you to increase the workload a bit. You must be very careful when adding more exercises to the plan you are already comfortable with: gradation is key to a healthy workout, so you must take your time and take on more strenuous exercise only if you are comfortable with your existing routine.
As for the type of physical activity that is the most efficient for you, start with something you like doing. Do not force yourself to jog if you prefer cycling, just because jogging is said to be more efficient. The best way to decide what to do and for how long is to compile a list of the activities you enjoy and make some calculations that take into consideration both your calorie intake and your schedule.