Weight loss is all about eating less and exercising more. I am sure you have heard this before. Now, what if I told you that this statement, is in fact NOT a factual statement, but simply a myth that has become socially accepted as truth?
Yes, you heard me right - weight loss is not just about eating less and exercising more. The way our bodies metabolize calories differs greatly and is depending upon a variety of factors. Stress, anxiety, fitness level, and even the way we breathe impact the way we process calories.
You could think that the more you exercise, the closer you are to your weight loss goal, right? No. Too much exercising can be harmful and actually makes your body hold on to the unwanted weight! Why? Because extreme exercise puts a lot of physical but also emotional stress on your overall body. Your body responds to this stress by releasing its stress hormone - cortisol - which is responsible for a variety of things in your body.
Cortisol not only metabolizes glucose and regulates your blood pressure, but also releases insulin for blood sugar maintenance. Overall, cortisol is also important for your immune system. Thus, maintaining a balanced level of cortisol is an important part of staying healthy.
If your cortisol levels are high for a long period of time - possibly triggered by over-exercising - your body responds to this by storing fat and not building muscle! Therefore, if you ever find yourself hitting a weight loss plateau, ask yourself: Are you exercising too much? Are you doing the right kind of exercise?
The key to weight loss is to work out smarter and eat Betr! Instead of spending hours on the treadmill or the elliptical, try a short 10 to 20 minute HIIT routine.
Additionally, you have to fuel your body with nutritious foods. However, do not deprive yourself of good fats! Our body can burn both carbs and fats and eating good fats is very important to our overall health!
What I want you to remember as the overall takeaway is that weight loss is more than just calories in versus calories out. Listen to your body and see how your body reacts to certain changes. Maybe you have not been able to lose any weight because you have been eating the wrong foods and possibly even depriving yourself of good, healthy fats? Maybe you have been unable to lose weight because you have simply been over-exercising? Simply, listen to your body and do meaningful changes accordingly.