Pros and Cons and when should you get started?
When trying to lose weight, I think a very big mistake takes place right from the start. Of course, we would naturally think that wanting to lose some weight would bring you to the inevitable thoughts of exercise. Of course, eat well and exercise and that’s all it takes, voila! Wish it were so but saying I am going to join the gym or get out and start to jog or buy some DVD on how to “burn baby burn that fat away in only 5 minutes a day!” seem all like great ideas and I am a full supporter of exercise. It’s just that it doesn’t really happen, does it?
Let me go back a moment. I had a client who came in to see me for weight loss a few years ago, she weighed close to 300lbs and was in her mid 30’s. Now, this is a lot of extra weight for a body to be carrying around, it’s a lot on the heart, back, knees, just basically it’s a lot to carry around. So when she started with me she thought it was odd that I wouldn’t bring up exercising for her. She kept waiting for me to bring it up, and I didn’t and had no plan on it either, by the way. Why not? Well, first of all, she was losing plenty of weight every week without it, a solid 2 to 4 pounds a week for months and months. For her it was obvious that exercise was not in her daily routine so far, if I had thrown some in it would have done a few things.
Let me explain. Exercise on its own is great, what it actually is doing is burning up energy, that’s good right, because food is energy and so is fat so we want to burn it right up. But if your body is not ready for this kind of thing, it may backfire. If I had this woman start reducing her caloric intake and she was safely and efficiently losing weight that means that her intake was less than her outtake, that’s perfect for weight loss. 2 to 4 pounds a week was awesome. If she started to exercise then she would have lost too much too fast and as exciting as that may be in the beginning it would have also made her hungrier, much hungrier and chances are that she would not be able to sustain it. Something would go, and she would either start thinking that with all this weight loss and exercise she could probably eat a bit more since she is soo hungry and sure that would do it for a moment until she plateaued. This would have eventually stopped her, it would be too much for her to do it all at once.
So when getting started if your weight is that high, get your food together first, and then when you are losing and feeling better and there is not as much pressure on your heart due to the extra weight you are carrying and not as much pressure on your joints, then get started slowly. A little cardio will go a long way, I suggest staying away from the weights for a while because if you are not into working out and may not be putting so much time into it then best way to spend your time is with the cardio. It will help strengthen your heart and burn away extra calories. But remember, this will make you hungrier!!!!
Do not make the same mistake that many do when exercising, that is eating to compensate for the hunger, first of all, you may just be thirsty so first drink plenty of water, before during, and after. Then after you have finished wait a little bit for your body to relax then go back to your regular regime of eating your 3 well-balanced meals and do not increase the size of them because you are now hungrier!! Keep them the same! This will help increase your weight loss. It will be harder in the beginning, that’s why I suggest waiting if you can to get started with it then add it to help you the rest of the way.
Exercise is a great way to help you stay at your goal weight and keep you tone and heart healthy. But it can be tricky. So as a rule, I like to tell people that if you have been exercising then keep it up, your body is already used to it so keep going. If you haven’t ever really exercised then waiting won't do you any harm either. Get your food together and then get your body ready to start moving, proper stretching before you get started and choosing the right form of exercise is key. Your goal should be to break a sweat for at least 20 minutes to start off, then you can gradually increase this time. Listen to your body, if something hurts you for instance your knees or back, it's just your body telling you it's too much, don’t push your way through it. Especially if you have been overweight for a while and your body had atrophied a bit. These are changes that you can hopefully be implementing for the rest of your life, it's not a race and you will get there a lot faster with some balance and without an injury.
It's hard to lose weight, its overwhelming as a matter of fact and I believe that a huge mistake we make is that when we get started with weight loss we throw ourselves into this entire life-changing and altering state that is so over the top, no one will be able to sustain it. The idea of changing your food is change enough and we know that’s still very hard to do.
Just to wrap this up, I am all for exercise but everything in its proper place and time. Get your food together and then when you are regularly dropping weight and your body is healthier for it and of course, you checked with your doctor then gradually add some cardio, listen to your body, and try to enjoy it.