The importance of exercise and regular physical activity is well-known. While busy lives, and lack of time leads to many of us not being able to inculcate regular exercise in our daily lives. It is important for one to feel more relaxed and energised. This is where weight loss exercises comes in.
Humans were a nomadic race for generations, travelling long distances on foot, for food and shelter. Our bodies were designed to be active. For this reason, a sedentary lifestyle is more harmful to us than we can anticipate. It can lead to the development of many health ailments and lags as we begin to age.
Most people don’t have the time or money to expend on a gym membership. They can practice weight loss exercise at home. You can find plenty of exercise routines online.
If your goal is to lose weight, exercise plans tailored for your weight and body type will yield you the results that you desire. Unlike fad diets, weight loss exercises are healthy for your body. If followed right, they can help maintain your body weight sustainably in the long term.
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Exercise and Weight Loss
The burning of calories plays a key role in weight loss. Exercise helps you burn these calories that, in turn leads to weight loss. For example, burning 3500 calories a week will help you lose one pound (about 0.45 kg). Therefore, working out enough to lose 3500 calories will help you lose 0.45 kg that week.
Care must be taken to plan your workout routine as per your own fitness goals. An individual looking to lose more weight would be required to burn more calories, and hence follow a more intense workout routine.
You could take the dietary route to achieve this, but just that will not be enough since restricting calorie intake could backfire. Following a diet plan and no workout routine in a bid to lose weight, could possibly lead to one losing muscle mass, which is not recommended. However, if you supplement this diet plan with sufficient weight loss exercise at home, you could limit the muscle loss. Muscle is more metabolically active, and so muscle loss is not recommended as part of your weight loss program. Once any amount of weight has been lost, your metabolic rate drops significantly. Losing weight becomes more difficult. Proactively preventing muscle loss can aid in neutralising this slide in your metabolic rate.
The importance of exercise lies in the fact that it not only helps lower body weight but improves upon your body composition, metabolic health and overall fitness. At times, you may notice that weight loss exercise at home may not be contributing to reducing your body weight. However, there is no reason to worry. Even if it is not decreasing your body weight, it helps reduce your body fat and build muscle. The waist size and body fat measurements can be used to tell the entire story, which scales may sometimes fail to depict.
Benefits of exercise
Exercise benefits both our body and mind. Some of the ways in which regular exercise is beneficial to us are:
1. Improves Sleep
Struggling to fall asleep? Maybe, your body isn’t tired enough. Exercising can help you sleep better, deeper and for longer. Be careful not to exercise very close to your bedtime, though; the adrenaline released while challenging physical activity could keep you from falling asleep.
2. Increases our Energy Levels
Exercise improves our endurance and muscle strength. It is equally effective in improving lung and cardiovascular function. Better lung and heart functioning directly translate to more energy to follow through with our daily chores.
3. Improves Muscle health
When you lead an active lifestyle, with an adequate amount of physical activity thrown in, your muscles strengthen and your tendons, ligaments and joints allow for easier movement and lesser chances of injury. Your coordination and balance improve. Also, the correct joint alignment affected by strong muscles and ligaments protects against the joint and lower backache.
4. Reduces Risk of Chronic Disease
The lack of regular physical activity is known to be a primary cause of chronic disease. Regular exercise helps improve insulin sensitivity, body composition, and cardiovascular fitness, while decreasing blood pressure and blood fat levels.
A lack of regular activity can lead to a significant increase in belly fat. This, in turn, increases the risk of type 2 diabetes and heart diseases. It is, therefore, recommended that one remain physically active and exercise regularly in order to avoid these diseases.
5. Pain Reduction
Exercise can also help reduce chronic pain. While it was recommended that get rest whenever in pain, studies have now found that exercise can benefit chronic pain.
According to several studies, exercise also helps control pain associated with various health conditions. This includes chronic lower back pain, chronic soft tissue shoulder disorder, among others. In addition to that, physical activity also helps raise tolerance to pain.
6. Improves Skin Health
The amount of oxidative stress in the body can affect your skin. This occurs when the body’s antioxidant defences are unable to completely repair the damage caused by free radicals to cells. This damages their structure and deteriorates the skin.
While intense physical activity contributes to oxidative damage, regular moderate exercise increases the body’s natural antioxidant production, thus helping protect cells. Similarly, exercise can also stimulate blood flow and induce skin cell adaptation. This helps delay the appearance of skin ageing.
Weight Loss Exercises at Home
It is a common complaint among the working public that there is not enough time for one to go to the gym and workout. However, exercise is a crucial part of anyone’s fitness journey, and should not be ignored. Here are a few exercises that one can do at home to achieve their fitness goals.
- Stand with your feet hip-width apart and your toes facing straight ahead or angled slightly outward.
- Slowly bend your knees and squat, sending the hips back behind you, while keeping your torso straight and your abs pulled in tight.
- Keep your knees behind your toes. Make sure everything’s pointing in the same direction.
- Squat as low as you can, and push into your heels to stand up.
- Squat with one dumbbell
- Squat with dumbbells
- Barbell squat
- Wide leg squat
- Front squat
- Wall sit
- One-leg squat
- Lie face down on the mat with your elbows resting on the floor next to your chest.
- Push your body off the floor in a push-up position with your body resting on your elbows or hands.
- Contract the abs and keep the body in a straight line from head to toes. Hold for 30 to 60 seconds and repeat as many times as you can.
- For beginners, do this move on your knees and gradually work your way up to balancing on your toes.
- Stand in a split-stance (one leg forward, one leg back).
- Bend your knees and lower your body into a lunge position, keeping the front knee and back knee at 90-degree angles.
- Keeping the weight in your heels, push back up (slowly!) to starting position.
- Never lock your knees at the top and don’t let your knee bend past your toes.
- Variations include front lunges, back lunges, and side lunges.
- Do this exercise two to three times per week for 12 to 16 reps.
4.Push Ups (Inclined) for Beginners
- If you’re a beginner or don’t have as much upper body strength, this is a good move to start with.
- Start on all fours with hands a bit wider than the shoulders.
- Walk the knees back a bit in order to lean your weight on the hands and flatten the back from the head down to the back of the knees.
- Pull the abs in and, keeping your back straight, bend the elbows and lower body toward the floor until elbows are at 90-degree angles.
- Push back up and repeat for 1 to 3 sets of 10 to 16 reps.
Exercise is an essential part of weight loss. One must focus on following a workout routine planned as per your goals and requirements. Ideally, consult a certified fitness trainer to plan out this workout routine. That said, one’s weight loss goals is dependant on the right kind of eating habits as well. It takes a combination of a good workout routine and a proper diet plan to ensure weight loss. Thus, get started on your fitness journey with a healthy meal plan, and a workout routine that includes the exercises mentioned above.
Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs)
A: Any individual looking to lose weight must turn to a combination of strength training (about 70%) and cardiovascular exercises (about 30%). This, combined with the right diet will help one achieve their weight loss goals.
A: Yes, you can. However, care must be taken to ensure that you follow correct posture, intensity and frequency. Ideally, get in touch with a certified fitness trainer to understand what exercises you need to do, and how exactly to do them.
A: No, you can not lose weight through exercise alone. Weight loss is a result of a combination of proper diet, and the right workout plan. It is important to ensure that you follow both in order to achieve the desired results.
A: In order to lose belly fat, you need a combination of a well-balanced diet, an active lifestyle, and a proper workout plan. That said, spot reduction is not a practice that is recommended by HealthifyMe. Make sure to follow a plan that will help you lose weight across the body.