FAQs On Exercise and Weight Loss

Weight loss is a combination of balanced eating, and full body exercise that focuses on different physical fitness aspects regularly.

Here are the top 10 FAQs about exercise and weight loss:

Is a daily walk enough to lose weight?
Walking, irregularly at a leisurely pace, without any focus on healthy eating and portion control, will not help you lose weight.

On the other hand, if you follow a good daily walking routine at a brisk pace, and balance it with a healthy diet maintained with clever portion control, then you might be able to lose weight.

Weight loss is not a walk in the park. It demands brisk walking; approximately one and a half kilometers daily. Brisk walking is recommended as one of the exercises to maintain your weight, especially for an older population, and help fight joint problems. Walking also makes you energetic and improves your cholesterol level.

To lose half a Kg of body weight, you need to burn 3,500 calories.

Will weight training make me look like a bodybuilder?
If you thought lifting heavy weights will give you a WWE body, then you’re wrong. Even if you wanted to build big muscles, you wouldn’t be able to do it this easily. Weight lifting increases muscle endurance, which in turn increases metabolism and burns fat at a faster pace. In fact, weight training will give you a toned and lean look. A little secret to weight training: Work those muscles till they tire out for effective training. If you walk away from a workout with enough energy to go dancing, then you’re not doing it right.

Do I need a pre-workout snack?
Yes, you do need a pre-workout snack as it is a source of energy for your workout session. It is recommended to include carbs in your snack as this is the storehouse of energy. A good pre-workout snack helps you to contract your muscles with ease, avoiding cramps. Besides, it prevents dizziness and hunger during and after your workout. Hence for better performance a pre-workout snack is a must.

However, this does not mean that you eat more even if you eat a full meal just an hour or two before the workout. Analyse your energy requirement at the time of exercise, especially if you exercise before breakfast in the morning.

Do I need a post-workout snack?
Here, the answer – without a doubt – is yes, you do need a post-workout snack to aid in the recovery process of the muscles. This snack makes sure you have all the nutrients for your body to recover. It is mostly recommended to have protein shake either made from natural products or the artificial whey protein.

Are dance workouts enough for weight loss?
Most of us are skeptical about it, but yes dancing can help you lose weight. But, there are several buts in this statement. Let’s begin with the most obvious one -

But, the dance workout must challenge you. A simple routine that doesn’t make you sweat and utilise energy, momentum and strength will be a low burn workout, and not help you lose weight. High intensity dance form like club, Bollywood and Zumba are a hit with individuals trying to lose weight.

But, your instructor must plan well-rounded workouts that focus on all body parts.These should also involve elements of cardio and weight bearing movements. Without these essentials any workout is incomplete. Luckily, most dance workouts involve the movement of various muscles which is one of the components to a successful weight loss.

But, not if you’re irregular. The capacity and time that you require to lose weight varies from person to person. Therefore, work this out for yourself.

But, not if you don’t eat a healthy, well-portioned diet. This is quite self-explanatory.

How much water should I drink during a workout?
You need to stay hydrated when you’re working out, so make sure you have enough water in you. This will help to stay hydrated:

- Two hours before you step into a gym, drink two glasses of water
- A sip every 2-3 minutes during the workout.
- And again two glasses of water after your workout

Remember to stay well-hydrated during exercise, irrespective of indoors or outdoors. Your body will tell you when to drink water if your exercise routine is challenging enough.

How long do I have to exercise to lose weight?
First rule, you need to burn more calories in order to lose weight and control your calorie intake. Circuit training, cardio exercises and cross training ensures you lose the flab at a faster pace. How long your weight loss takes depends on how dedicated you are. It’s just that simple. The more you focus on being regular with challenging workouts and the more you control what you eat, the quicker you will lose weight.

The key point here is to research and consult with experts in order to zero in on what workout and which diet works best for you.

Can I eat whatever I want if I workout every day, and still lose weight?
One can’t consider this question without considering age, level of daily physical activity besides workouts, and what you mean by ‘whatever.’ When one is younger, under 30 years of age, exercise and activity play a dominant role in deciding weight control. Here, one can eat a lot and get away with it as the body retains some basic muscle tone from childhood years. Even this is subject to how fit an individual was as a child.

As you cross over to your 30s and 40s, however, it becomes a different story. One’s weight loss or gain is then controlled more by diet and less by workouts. 70-30 is a safe split, where diet stands for 70, and exercise for 30. Therefore, it is important to focus on healthy food and portion control.

Can’t I just lose weight by dieting?
Exercising and healthy eating go hand in hand. The question here is more about what you mean by ‘diet.’ A diet is not a meal plan that makes you starve. A healthy diet is one that makes room for nutritious food in smart portions. In fact, you will find that once you get on the healthy eating track, you will eat a lot more than you did earlier.

Technically you can lose weight with a crash diet, but it’s only temporarily – make no mistakes about this. You will gain more weight once you go back to eating regular meals, as most crash dieters often do.

Why do I need to build muscle to lose weight?
Weight loss without focus on muscle strength is like building a house without any pillars. You can build a house from mud, but come rain and the walls will crumble and fall. Similarly, muscles are the building blocks of a healthy and fit body. A person with low muscle composition will have high body fat. This means that any weight loss through crash dieting or over-doing cardio will be extremely short-lived.

The more your muscle base, the better is the capacity for your body to burn calories more efficiently on a daily basis. Your metabolism increases when you build muscles, hence it is important to build muscles to lose weight. Additionaly, gaining muscle strength helps you avoid many lifestyle diseases, and stay limber well into old age.

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