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August 22 2015


How to lose weight by exercising

While many people want to lose weight, it’s all too common to think that the best way to do it is by simply going on a diet or taking a magical diet pill. Although dieting is a fantastic way of preventing future weight gain, you’ll only achieve long-term results by combining a healthy diet with regular exercise. 

People who subscribe to extreme diets, particularly those that drastically reduce calories or cut out food groups altogether, often see immediate results but find their progress hard to maintain. This is often because such diets actually damage your body – everyone needs a balanced diet to be healthy, and although it’s certainly possible to eat too many fats, carbohydrates and sugars, eating none at all will leave you feeling weak and exhausted. Once you start feeling under the weather, it’s all too easy to binge on unhealthy foods or return to old eating habits – and as soon as you do that, you’ll be back at your old weight in no time. 

In order to make a long-lasting change to your weight, then, it’s essential to combine a healthy, balanced diet with regular exercise. Physical activity is great as it helps to speed up your metabolism, burning off calories and fat at the same time as boosting your energy levels and helping you to get in shape. 

There are many different exercises that can help you on the way to weight loss, and it’s important to find ones that work for you. If you’re hoping to improve your overall health, cardiovascular activities such as running, cycling and cross-training are a great place to start. If these sound intimidating, don’t worry – it’s fine to start off slowly, as even walking will have a positive impact on your health and you’ll be able to start doing more demanding exercises as your body adapts to new levels of activity. Also, remember to think about what activities you will enjoy – if you hate running, try cycling, join a football team or take up an exercise class. You can also pursue more specialised exercises, aimed to shrink your stomach, tone your thighs or deal with any other part of your body that’s causing you concern – you’ll need to have a basic level of fitness to try them, but any gym will have a trainer on hand to advise you, and there are plenty of helpful resources on the internet. 

Going to the gym is one of the most popular ways to exercise, and if you lead a busy life, it’s a great way to set aside some dedicated time for keeping fit. It’s amazing how quickly you will learn to feel comfortable amongst everyone else pursuing the same goals as you, and after a while you might even start to enjoy it! Finding a friend with similar goals in mind can be a great help too – working out can be hard work and a little dull, but going with someone else can make it much more fun. Having a gym buddy is also a great source of motivation, as you’ll have someone else to answer to if you’re feeling lazy and thinking about skipping a session. 

If the gym doesn’t work for you, it’s just as easy to exercise at home, or out in the great outdoors. Activities such as hiking, cycling and swimming are all great ways to get in shape without paying a membership fee, and if you’re stuck at home there are plenty of options there too. Replacing your drive to work or the shops with a walk is a good way to introduce exercise into your daily routine – along with taking the stairs instead of the elevator, and even just making the effort to stretch and do a few simple exercises when you’ve got a little free time. There are also hundreds of exercise videos available online, suitable for all levels of ability and experience, and treadmills and rowing machines can be a good investment if you’re serious about getting fit but can’t make it to the gym. 

There are also plenty of people who can advise you on the best way to lose weight – from personal trainers and fitness instructors at the gym, to dieticians, nutritionists and doctors. If you’re not sure of the best exercises or diet for you, it’s well worth seeking outside advice, as these trained and experienced professionals can give you a confidence boost and some very valuable advice.

 Finally, remember that losing weight is never easy, and it won’t happen overnight. Set yourself reasonable goals, and expect a couple of setbacks… but remember that with exercise, a healthy diet and some commitment, you’re certain to achieve your ideal weight.

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