- Exercise & Fitness
Why Am I Not Losing Any Weight?
Many people start to work out, go for long walks and start to eat less but still cannot lose any weight. They think they are doing everything they can but they still don’t come any closer to the body they wish. Answering it simply: you are probably focusing on the wrong things.
There might be a lot of reasons that are stopping you from losing weight, but we will discuss the most important here. Everything we will cover in this article, can be used for people trying to gain weight either. But, before, we must have a little knowledge about a few concepts related to the human body.
What is the Basal Metabolic Rate and How is it Related with Losing Weight?
To make it simple, metabolism is the set of chemical reactions inside the human body. Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) is the minimal rate of energy expended by the body at rest to maintain itself. In other words, it is the amount of energy your body will spend in a given period of time. Here, we will consider this time frame to be one day. For example, if your Basal Metabolic Rate is 1500 kcal, you will consume at least 1500 kcal a day. So, if you eat less than your BMR you will certainly lose weight. Unfortunately, it is not that simple.
Many things affect your BMR and diet is one of them. The less you eat, the lower your BMR will become. If you just keep eating less and less, there will become a time when you will not be able to keep up with your BMR. That is the reason why miracle diets that help you lose an incredible amount of weight in just a few days will stop working no long after. So, you should not only be concerned about the amount you eat, but with how many calories you burn. And to burn more calories, it is important to keep your BMR high.
How Can I Keep My Basal Metabolic Rate High?
There are many formulas to calculate your BMR, but none of the is accurate. Everybody is different and each person will have a specific BMR value. But the most important is not the value itself, but how you can increase it. If you keep your Basal Metabolic Rate high, then you will be able to lose much more weight with no extra effort.
Let’s just make a stop here and say that, if you are trying to gain weight, to build muscles, it is also important to keep your metabolism high, because you probably do not want to accumulate fat. You will just have to eat more. Every time I talk about losing weight, the same principle can be applied to gain muscles.
There are two main types of exercises that burn calories. Each one of them will affect the BMR differently.
Aerobic and Anaerobic Exercises
We will consider aerobic exercises as low or moderate intensity exercises performed for a long period of time. For example, if you run for 40 minutes you will be doing an aerobic exercise.
This type of training will probably consume a large amount of calories while you are doing it, but this effect you stop after you are done.
On the other hand, we can consider anaerobic exercises to high intensity training with intervals, like weight lifting or sprints. This type of exercise demands more effort. It is more complex to execute and will have much more impact on the body.
Anaerobic exercises will keep burning calories after your training is over. This happens because exercises like weight lifting and sprints destroy your muscle fibers and you will have to consume a good amount of energy to rebuild them.
So, it is much more effective to do a shorter high intensity weight lifting training than to run for 40 minutes or one hour. With high intensity training, your Basal Metabolism Rate will increase and help you lose more weight. There is no need to tell that if your objective is to gain muscles, weight lifting will be more effective too. You will just have to eat more.
What Types of Exercises Are Better to Do?
When it comes to weight lifting, the best thing to do to lose fat or to build more muscles is to aim for larger muscle groups and do compound exercises.
A compound exercise will affect many muscular groups at a time. Of course, more energy will be necessary to recover more muscular groups at a time, so it will increase more your Basal Metabolism Rate.
Aiming at larger muscular groups will work basically the same way. Larger muscles will be harder to recover and more energy will have to be expended.
Which Compounded Exercises Should I Do?
I would recommend using free weights instead of machines. Of course, machines have their place in your training routine, but dumbbell exercises must be more frequent. When training with free weights, more muscular fibers will be recruited, because you will have to stabilize the weight when you are doing the repetitions. When more muscular fibers are recruited, more energy will be needed to recover them.
The good thing about dumbbells, is that you can use them to do almost all kinds of exercises and you do not need to get out of your house. Just buy a pair of adjustable dumbbells and you can increase the weight as you get stronger. There are many for sale, but I would advise a good quality product like Bowflex.
Another item I would advise to get if you are planning to work out at home is a bench. Bench presses are important to a good workout routine. Adidas has a comfortable and quality bench.
Final Thoughts About Losing Weight
Of course, it Is not only the exercises that should be taken into account when trying to lose weight or build muscles. One of the main parts of any workout routine is the diet, but this is conversation for another time
I hope you have enjoyed this article and found it useful for you. Thank you for reading and if you have something to add, please comment.