Calories in – Calories out = Calories accumulated.
To put it simply, to lose weight you need to eat less, exercise more or both. What if you could only use one method. There are many eating/diet plans, and good ones, Nutrisystem, Jenny Craig and Weight Watchers, just to name a few. On the exercise side some of the most famous, or infamous exercise programs include P90X and Insanity. All of these programs are effective in their own right, but if you had to choose one direction, which way should you go?
The answer is perfectly clear. If you could choose exercise or diet, you should choose diet. I say this with the utmost confidence. And this is coming from the mouth of a lifetime fitness fanatic and a strength and conditioning coach. Why do I say this with so much confidence? That’s easy! It is extremely difficult to out exercise your diet! Let me give you a couple vivid examples.
If you had an 140 lb woman, and she ate two pieces of cheese pizza and a piece of cheese cake, that would be a total of 955 calories. In order to burn that off, she would have to run 10 minute miles for 1.5 hours! In the height of my running days as a young man I couldn’t do that and I highly doubt you could either.
Here’s another vivid example of this. According to Malia Frey, a weight loss expert writing on About Health, dropping a daily large cola from McDonald’s completely (if you drink about one per day) would result in reducing your annual calorie intake by over 200,000 calories – or about 60 pounds – in one year. Replace that soda with water and overcome obesity. That’s just one large soda. For the same 140 lb woman to burn the same amount of calories, she would have to run 1.5 miles in 16 minutes, EVERY DAY! Wouldn’t be easier just not to drink the soda and have a glass of water instead?
Fortunately, we don’t have to pick one. We can incorporate both a healthy meal plan and exercise in achieving and maintaining a healthy weight. Experts say that the contribution is 75% nutrition and 25% exercise. I will talk about both in future articles.