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Exercising, Yet, You Aren't Losing Weight! Understand Why?

Saturday, May 22, 2010
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Let's look at The FIIT principle:

Physical activity or exercise should never be monotonous. If you do the same regimen over and over again, your body metabolically adapts to it. The outcome is disappointing - no change of an inch or drop in weight. Surprise or challenge your body to burn more calories by implementing one or more of the following ideas-

Frequency- add one more day of walking each week
Intensity- add short burst of jogging, speed walking or climbing the hill.
Time- Add 10-15 minutes to your usual workout time
Type- Do a different activity such as cycling, swimming, aerobics, or weights. Body will definitely respond if you change the regimen every 4-6 weeks.

Fast or Slow: Intensity of exercise to lose weight has always been a matter of debate. However, a brisk walk for long duration tends to burn more fat than a quick sprint. Low intensity workouts are better for obese people and also those with heart ailments. Assess your exercise intensity, using a talk test. It determines how hard your exercise is. If you can talk effortlessly its low, if you talk with effort its moderate, and inability to talk is high intensity.

Duration of exercise: Body uses fat as fuel only when you exercise beyond 20 minutes. So, exercising 10 minutes three times can make you fitter but will definitely not help you lose weight.



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User Comments

01 August, 2010 | sujata | Reply

sujata I love to read your articles...

14 June, 2010 | Neena | Reply

Neena Thanks Geetanjali for your tips on exercising.

14 June, 2010 | Geetanjali | Reply

Geetanjali Dear Neena,

Research on the best time of the day to exercise is still underway. But the best time for exercise is not yet established. Those who exercise in the morning are more consistent and stick to their regimen. The ones who exercise in the afternoon are considered to have better strength, endurance and are less likely to get injured. People are more alert in the afternoon and the body temperature is highest and muscles are warm and flexible. Evening exercise improves sleep quality, but late evening exercise disturbs it.

The bottom line, you have a choice to decide the best time to exercise based on your personal goals, lifestyle, work schedule. Most important, be consistent make the regimen a part of your daily routine to attain maximal benefit.

Geetanjali Kelkar, PhD
Nutrition Vista

14 June, 2010 | Geetanjali | Reply

Geetanjali Dear Sanjana,

While trying to lose weight with a specific exercise and dietary regimen, the body gets used this regimen and there is no further weight loss, or you reach a plateau. To break this plateau you need to change the exercise and diet pattern. Changing the exercise will challenge your body, it will respond differently. Increase the number of sets or duration of activity. You can increase your activity by 10-20 minutes by climbing stairs, walking to the shop or a stroll after meals. Alternating cardio and resistance training would also help.

Geetanjali Kelkar, PhD
Nutrition Vista.

14 June, 2010 | Geetanjali | Reply

Geetanjali Dear Laura

Thank you for your comment. I agree with you, weight watchers should follow a specific exercise regimen and also count calories and food intake. Along with calories, the proportion of macronutrients and micronutrient intake should be considered to prevent any nutritional deficiencies while losing weight. Hunger hormones work differently in obese and women. Many end up binging, even after 10-20 minutes workout. And this has a negative impact on weight loss.

Geetanjali Kelkar, PhD
Nutrition Vista.

14 June, 2010 | Sanjana | Reply

Sanjana Hi Geetanjali,In my case I need to lose at least 10 more kgs. I managed to lose around 6 kgs with my initial workout,I only eat the amount suggested by my dietitian and with my life style I can only spare 40 mts for any exercise regime, but typically as you said I am not able to loose any more. So will it help if I alternate between cardio one day and resistance exercise the next and keep alternating my exercise regime?

14 June, 2010 | Neena | Reply

Neena Does it matter at what time you exercise in the day?

13 June, 2010 | laura | Reply

laura Exercise is great, but you need to factor in calories consumed and your energy expenditure in order to lose weight. I am a fitness professional and certified weight loss coach. I have assisted many individuals in losing over 20,000lbs. Contact me at anytime if you would like more info.

10 June, 2010 | Geetanjali Kelkar | Reply

Geetanjali Kelkar One more important thing to consider while exercising is the target heart rate. Calculate your target heart rate using a simple calculator. It gives you the range at which your body burns fat. Exercising in this zone improves your body composition and promotes heart health. To know more sign up for NutritionVista.
Geetanjali Kelkar, PhD
Dietitian online

29 May, 2010 | Geeta | Reply

Geeta Hi,
I also face similar problem.I used to be 9 kgs overweight, with diet contol and physical activity I have reduced my weight by 3 kgs,but after that it doesnt seen to budge inspite of consistent efforts.Will try to follow suggestions given in article for sure.

26 May, 2010 | Janki Patel | Reply

Janki Patel Hi Geetanjali,
Nice article. I am facing quite similar problem. Weight reduction is difficult with hypothyroidism.But i will surely put your suggestions in to effect.

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