Let’s face it - from everywhere we are flooded with information about the newest ‘groundbreaking method’ to lose weight, that new diet that is going to change your life and make you slim for good, pills, fat burners, HIIT training, detoxes, belts, workout gear and so much more! Really, the marketing industry is making the whole process of losing weight unbelievably confusing and seemingly difficult, just to be able to sell you all kinds of weird, often unnecessary products. The truth is, the whole secret of weight loss is really simple. It falls down to one equation - ‘calories in’ minus ‘calories out’. In other words, if a number of calories you take, in the form of foods and drinks, is lower than a number of calories you burn, then you lose weight. If the opposite is true - you take in more than you burn - then you will gain weight.
Calories are units of energy. It is pretty much the fuel your body uses to support all of its functions - from breathing and pumping blood to running and riding a bike. These calories are found in the food, so that is why you need to eat in order to live.
However, when these calories are taken in excess, the body stores them as fat, and thus you gain weight. The way to get rid of them is to burn them, either by eating less or by increasing your total energy expenditure. When it comes to eating less, it really can be done with any food, as long as the total calories are less than what you burn. You don’t need to eat only fruits, or vegetables, or skim milk. You don’t even need to eat ‘clean’ in order to lose weight. You can totally lose weight by just eating chocolate, but I would still not recommend that since the impact on your health would be questionable. My point is that you can still enjoy your favorite foods, as long as they are in the right amounts. And to figure this out, I encourage you to start tracking your daily calorie intake and see how much are you actually eating. There are some great calorie counting apps available, that will help you in the process. I want to emphasize, however, that in order for this method to be efficient, you have to log everything. And I really mean EVERYTHING. One peanut, a spoon of honey, glass of juice - it all counts. You might be surprised at how much extra calories you are taking without even realizing.
And when it comes to burning calories, you don’t burn all of the calories through activities like cardio and sports. You burn a lot without even thinking about it - through the activity of your different organs: by breathing, keeping your brain working, heart beating and much more. This is called Basal Metabolic Rate, the energy your body uses each day to simply stay alive. In order to burn more calories, any activity would help with that. The more intense the activity, the more calories burned.
Even making small adjustments in your daily routine, like walking to school or work, instead of driving, can have an impact on your metabolism. Just remember that your goal is to actually be in a calorie deficit. If you train hard and then eat the equivalent amount of food, because you ‘deserve it’, this is not going to get you anywhere if you want to lose weight. And this is also the reason why so many people, who spend hours and hours doing exhausting workouts then see no results whatsoever because they forget that the nutrition is a key factor on the road to your physique goals. People say ‘You cannot out-train a bad diet’ for a reason.
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