Sad news for some gym junkies who are busting their ass at the gym. Turns out that all that working out can actually be the reason why you're struggling to lose those extra pounds. The list below explains on how working out might actually be hindering your weight loss goals, and how to avoid this from happening to you:
WORKING UP AN APPETITE
There is no doubt exercise burns calories, but that means it can also stimulate hunger pangs. So just because you workout doesn't mean you have a pass for hitting the buffet table right afterwards. Some people feel super hungry after exercising, so you need to make sure you eat enough but not to the point where you aren’t burning excess energy off.
SOLUTION: Take up running or cycling. Studies have shown that hour of fairly vigorous aerobic exercise can suppress appetite far more effectively than 90 minutes of weight training. This is mainly caused by reduced levels of ghrelin and peptide YY, the so-called ‘hunger hormones’. DON'T GORGE BEFORE WORKING OUT
Cardio-fasting (avoiding food before training) is an approach that has been popular among body builders and weightlifters for years. This theory has to do with insulin, the hormone released when you eat which promotes fat-burning.
Studies have shown that a kilogram of fat is burned off sooner during morning exercise carried out after an overnight fast than when doing the same exercise after lunch. By temporarily avoiding food (simple sugars and refined carbs) you can prime your body to use your stored fat as a fuel instead.
SOLUTION: It's best to perform a mini-fast for two to four hours before hitting the gym so that fat burning will peak. AVOID ENERGY BARS
The thing about these energy bars and sports drinks is that they're usually packed with sugar. Only athletes in hard training need to use them regularly (think Olympian levels) as the ingredients are designed for intense activity lasting 90 minutes or longer.
SOLUTION Unless you're a competitive athlete, you'll probably need only 140-350 calories per serving. Try munching a couple of hours before a workout. If you're feeling thirsty, substitute sports drinks by with 500ml of water or squash and adding a tiny pinch of salt an hour before and during exercise. DOING THE WRONG WORKOUT
One of the most common misconceptions about going to the gym is that people wrongly assume the weight will melt off instantly. In reality, it’s not that easy. To lose even just 1kg of body fat, you need to burn about 8,000 calories. That's equivalent to around 80 miles of running! So any slow-paced aerobic activity is simply not enough to shift those extra pounds.
SOLUTION: The best way to tackle this is to try dividing your workout sessions to 20 to -30 minutes, but you'll need to increase the intensity. Adding 30-60 second ‘sprints’ on a bike or while running is the best way to help you shed the fat and achieve your weight-loss goals.
Once you start working out regularly, you're body will become fitter and more effecient at utilising stress hormones and other natural chemicals that aid weight loss. But the main goal is to both exercise as well as keep track of your calorie consumption.
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