There are some myths surrounding weight loss we’d like to discuss so you can be better informed about what you’re eating.
When it comes to losing weight calories count. Of all the various ways to lose weight a simple technique is that to lose weight you reduce your calorie intake. It doesn’t have to be any more complex than that.
Of course you can try to reduce fat or carbs or any number of fad diets but they are just that – fads. What people come back to is cutting calories by a modest amount and starting an exercise program.
1 pound in weight is roughly equivalent to 3500 calories. So, cutting 500 calories off your daily intake for a week is 500 x 7 = 3500 = 1 pound lost!
Add in the calories lost through exercising and that’s how you achieve sustainable, permanent weight loss at the rate of 1 to 2 pounds per week.
Carbs & Fat Do NOT Make You Fat
Another popular misconception is that carbs and fat make you fat. They don’t. Both are essential part of a healthy balanced diet. Carbs in particular are the cornerstone of any runner’s diet.
Yes, if you are trying to lose weight then the quantities and type need to change but you can still include these macro-nutrients in your diet and lose weight.
Carbohydrates are your body’s main source of fuel. Carbohydrates are stored in your muscles and liver as glycogen and are found in the bloodstream as glucose. Cut carbs too much and you can’t exercise properly.
Carbohydrates are found in bread, pasta, potatoes, oats, fruits, vegetables, nuts & lentils. Where possible choose wholegrain carbs.
Aim to make carbs count for around 50% of your daily calorie intake.
Fats have many important roles including correct functioning of the brain, nervous-system and immune system. They also form the building blocks of anti-inflammatory chemicals in our bodies. Fats are used to make cell membranes and protect internal organs.
Healthy fats can be found in nuts, seeds, avocados, olive oil and oily fish such as salmon.
Aim to make healthy fats count for around 25% of your daily calorie intake.
You Do Need To Watch Low-Fat Foods
Low fat foods might seem like a sensible option. After all, you’re trying to lose weight so why not choose the low-fat or even zero-fat option?
Well sometime these foods are a good choice. BUT… some of them are loaded with sugar to improve the taste. When buying low-fat foods take a look at the calorie content.
Runners who want to lose weight avoid gym work and strength training. The two thoughts guiding this thinking are “weights will make me big, bulky and slow” and “I burn more calories with running”.
Here’s the truth:
It takes a very strict diet and a punishing weight training routine to build big bulky muscles. The type of strength training that a typical runner would do does not lead to this type of muscle bulk.
Strength training is actually a great way to burn calories, after all the energy to lift those weights has to come from somewhere doesn’t it? Improving your lean muscle mass over fat can also aid longer term weight management – muscle cells have a higher metabolic rate than fat cells, in other words they use more energy at rest. If you’re leaner you’ll burn calories while you sleep.
Longer Cardio Sessions Don’t Always Mean More Calories Burned
It’s an easy assumption to make – running burns calories so running for longer means burning even more. Not necessarily…
Some runners fall into the trap of running for a long time but running so slowly there is little or no training effect. Yes, running does burn up those calories but some studies have shown that two 30 minute sessions at a higher intensity use up more calories than one sixty minute session at a lower intensity. In other words, you have to sweat just a little
We’ll be looking more closely at how you can change your running routine to boost your weight loss later in this report.
One of the most important things for you to remember is that your increased activity level is NOT an excuse to cheat! Maintain a healthy diet and you will lose weight. By the same token, you will NOT help your weight loss by skipping meals. Eating healthy foods and eating regularly is rule number 1!