Battle of the Buldge
The war on excess weight
Many wars and battles have been fought throughout history and most have 2 defining features…a starting point and an end! But there is one battle that we have pretty much all heard of that seems to be without either, the Battle of the Bulge. I know…I am being silly, kind of. I am also not referring to the WWII battle in France. It’s much worse; it’s the battle against permanent weight loss. Few declare victory and many surrender but most just end up severely wounded… they feel defeated and have ultimately gained more weight and it doesn’t have to be that way….no army enters battle without a plan. And the fat loss battle is no different. Here are 3 things every woman needs to know before waging the weight loss war!
Weight loss is a math equation!
It takes 3500 calories to gain a pound of fat or to lose a pound of fat. You have to expend more energy than the energy (food) you take in each day. There are many unhealthy ways to do this like severe calorie restriction or excessive cardio and who wants to do that? Or you can be aware of how many calories you burn a day and eat slightly less than that…this is why you hear often 1-2 pounds a week is the healthy way to lose. More than that causes muscle loss and my next point explains why this is so important.
Muscle burns more calories!
Studies have shown that lean muscle burns anywhere from 35 to 50 calories per pound per day! Guess how much fat burns? Fat burns a measly 2-3 calories per pound per day. There are many camps of thought on the actual amount that muscle burns but I have several well -conducted studies that validate my statement. This is why it is so important to preserve AND build lean muscle by implementing a regular 3-5 day strength-training program. Muscle burns more calories and allows you to eat more food! I love to eat!! Don’t you?
Cardio is the enemy in the camp!
I am certainly not saying to stop doing ALL cardio. What I am saying is on a given day if life is busy and I only have time for lifting weights or doing cardio. I am going to choose weights EVERY TIME. Cardio can be a tool for fat loss but rarely does cardio build muscle. If you have forgotten already why this is so important refer back to #2, There are certain types that do build lean muscle such as HIIT but most women get on the treadmill or bike and for an hour or more and, worse than that, they can read a book while doing it! This is called steady state cardio and you are doing your body more harm than good. This actually could cause you to gain belly fat through the release of cortisol due to stress on the body. There is no cookie cutter recipe for the amount of cardio each person should do since it depends on many factors. A certified personal trainer could help you determine if you are doing too much or not but my point is that strength training is an indispensible part of losing weight and keeping it off!
You can do it!
Now you are ready to engage the enemy! You also need to know that these are not just things I am suggesting to you as a good idea to try. These are the things I do everyday and the ONLY thing that has transformed my body and given me lifelong victory over the bulge! You can do this.
Rome was not built in a day.
As you progress towards your weight loss goals keep in mind that Rome was not built in a day, neither will your body. It is okay to start out slow and add more activity and exercise as you can. The key is to get the pendulum swinging the right direction. Even losing a pound a week would result in a 52 pound weight loss after a year. You don't need to try and do it in a week or month but lose weight over time. You can do it.