As many dieter’s discover, finding the right balance between diet and exercise can be tricky. In order to ensure healthy weight loss and maintenance, equal attention should be paid to both what you eat and how you exercise. Without balance, your weight can fluctuate. Aside from the frustration this causes, studies have shown that yo-yo dieting is actually more harmful than carrying extra weight. Learning to find the proper balance between diet and exercise can help you to secure and keep the perfect weight for your body type.
All About Calories
The best way to gauge the balance between the amount you eat and how much exercise you need is to count your calories on a daily basis. Once you know how much food you are taking in, planning an exercise program to burn off the required amount of calories gets a lot easier. Of course, every person is different and other factors such as metabolism, body type, age and your current weight will also play a part in determining the right balance of diet and exercise. Learning how many calories your body needs will also help you to decide how much exercise you need to lose or maintain your weight. As a general rule, most women need approximately 2000 calories a day to maintain their current weight. If you are more active, you can allow for more calories, if you are less active, you should require fewer calories. Adding an exercise regimen to your schedule can help to burn additional calories and will help you to lose weight.
The Problem with Plateaus
Once you find the right balance between diet and exercise, you may find yourself running into weight loss plateaus. Although you may be participating in the same activities and consuming the same amount of calories, sometimes the body doesn’t seem to want to lose any more weight. When this happens, there are several ways you can breach the plateau:
Increase Your Exercise. Adding to your normal exercise program is one way to up the ante on your weight loss plan. Once you have been exercising for a while, increasing the difficulty level can help to build your strength and endurance.
Fast for a Day. Many experts attribute weight loss plateaus to a reactionary affect by your body’s metabolism. While long term fasting can be dangerous, limiting yourself to water for a single day can clean out your system and re-boot your metabolism.
Change Your Diet. A change in diet can also help to boost your metabolic rate. By introducing new foods to your diet, you may be able to trick your metabolism back into action.
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