I hear this constantly, have you ever thought it?
I exercise 3-5 times per week but I’m not seeing the results I want.
I totally hear you and have been there in the past! The good old 80/20 rule applies here and I bet you’ve heard it before: One’s weight loss/ management results are 80% food and 20% exercise - just focusing on the exercise, without managing what you’re eating very likely won’t get you the results you want.
For what in the world to do with food, I’d definitely recommend joining my weekly meal plan program here.
But! Of course that still leaves the question about what in the world to do with exercise. Exercise is SO good for us! I highly recommend it.
Here are just some of the awesome benefits of moving our bodies:
Improve mood & makes us feel happier
Defines and builds our muscles
Helps us sleep
Improves the quality of our bones
Increases our energy levels
Reduces the risk of chronic disease
Can improve our memory and even brain health
However, if weight loss or decreasing body fat and toning up are your goals, my general recommendation is to
Focus on Low Intensity Exercise
Let’s dive into this…
What is low intensity exercise?
Low intensity exercise is where you’re moving your body, but typically not super duper sweating and over-exerting yourself. Here are some examples:
Barre (a mix of small weights with a little dance component)
Small weights, using body weights
Now of course, this is all really more person-dependent. A certain yoga class could super tucker you out, or jogging could make you personally super hungry. Choose what works best for you.
What is high intensity exercise?
Here are some examples of high intensity exercise:
Why should I focus on low intensity exercise?
It’s a natural consequence of high intensity exercise that it makes us more hungry. Which is completely well and good, but if our focus is on getting lean, losing body fat, and/ or losing weight, we can very easily eat more than the calories we exercised.
And! What’s also very interesting, is that once a body gets used to high intensity exercise, the body becomes more efficient - so you’re not actually burning as many calories as when you started that intense type of exercise.
Here’s what someone who tried doing exercise in this fashion said!
Does this mean I can’t to high intensity exercise anymore?
Absolutely not! What about just decreasing the frequency - so instead of intense exercise 4-5 days per week, doing high intensity exercise 2 days, and then low intensity the other 2-3 days.
I’d say it doesn’t hurt to at least try it this way :)
Should I eat more/ account for the calories I’ve burned?
The machines at the gym are actually pretty wildly inaccurate, sadly. Typically they’re 10-40% off.
I find this question to really, again be more person dependent. Some people don’t need an additional snack, while others do. Again, if you’re trying to manage your weight and lean out, it’s very easy to over-eat what you burned. More about exactly how to manage this in my program!
If you do need a snack, here is a complete list of some great ones, but here are some specific ideas. I’d generally recommend a 100-300 calorie snack, but of course please modify that based on your specific needs. It’s also ok for there to be some trial and error to figure out what works for you!
1 apple + 1-2 Tbsp peanut butter or 1 of these almond butter packets
1 string cheese + 1/8-1/4 cup nuts
1/4 cup of nuts by themselves
In my program, we track calories to get a really objective view of what’s going on & how to make significant changes. So if that’s something that interests you, I’d try it!
What do YOU do for exercise?
I (Rachel) primarily walk - I walk every day! I get about 8000 steps per day. I use my fitbit (this is the one I have) to track it.
you are looking for the EASIEST and most realistic weight loss program - that works for the LONG term (it incorporates weekly meal plans, how to stop stress & boredom eating, AND an accountability group) - check out my program HERE!