One of the biggest misconceptions that I come across is this: in order to manage your weight, be it lose a few pounds or simply keep your weight steady, all you need to do is exercise. FALSE!!!
I am not saying that exercise is not important, even crucial to your overall health and fitness but, if your goal is to get rid of unwanted weight or perhaps you are happy with your current weight but you simply want to avoid putting on any excess pounds, you need to get your nutrition in order.
Let’s look at an example:
A 12 oz. can of Coke has 140 calories, 39 gms. of carbs and 39 gms. of sugar. Without really trying to chug it down, simply drinking it when you’re thirsty it’s going to take you maybe 5 minutes. That’s if you are taking your time to “enjoy it”.
Now, let’s look at a Big Mac. It has 540 calories, 45 gms. of carbs. Again, if you take the time to “enjoy it”, it’s going to take you no more than 10 minutes from beginning to end. So, if you had those 2 together and just for our example’s sake, you are skipping fries today, just because it’s Monday and you are feeling like you over did it on the weekend and you want to be good, your total caloric intake in 10 minutes of “pleasure” is 680 calories!!!
Now, I want you to get on a treadmill. Or if you have a heart rate monitor that measures calorie consumption, wear that and go out to a park or a place that you can safely run without getting hit by a car. What I want you to do either on the treadmill or your designated running place, is to start running at an intense level. Think of this level as a pace where you wouldn’t be able to carry a conversation simply because you are breathing heavily, but this pace is sustainable enough that you can keep it up for 10 minutes. But remember, it needs to be intense!
After 10 minutes of this super intense run, I want you to look at how many calories you burned in that time. What you will discover is that you maybe burned 100 calories and that is if you really pushed yourself. This number is for illustration purposes only because your actual caloric consumption will vary depending on your age, weight, gender, etc. But the point of the example remains:
Even when you push yourself really hard, you can’t burn through all the calories that you eat. Regardless of where those calories come from. (I don’t mean to propagate the notion that a calorie is a calorie. The nutrition provided by a piece of fruit that is 140 calories is far superior to those same calories coming from a soda). Does this make sense to you?
Abs Are Made In The Kitchen
That is why they say: “abs are made in the kitchen”. Simple, sustainable approach to eating is the way to go. Forget about dumb diets that promote starvation and feeling deprived. You will get desperate and no matter how strong your will power is, you will give in to temptation and reach for those “forbidden” foods. It is, and always will be far better to understand sound and simple approaches to eating: getting proteins from lean meats, fish and poultry. Carbs from veggies and fruits. Get healthy fats from almonds, avocados, salmon, etc. While avoiding all sorts of processed, packaged foods.
If you are serious about improving the quality of your life through eating wholesome, nutritious foods, I recommend reading The Primal Blueprint by Mark Sisson. It’s a great, non-scientific, easy to understand approach to eating for wellness and health.