So I’m sitting here at my kitchen table scheduling Facebook posts, registering Key Fitness Training as an official business in Fernandina Beach, writing client programs and thinking about shuttling kids around to sports tonight. My brain is super busy and engaged. Doing all sorts of things brains do to write, create and plan. My physical body…not so much.
While being productive intellectually, my body was stationary, sitting for hour upon hour, moving nothing more than my fingers.
I’m sure most of you know how I feel and do the same thing for hours every day.
As my brain works in overdrive determining what balance exercises to give my 55-year-old client and what the best exercises are for my client with a hunched posture, I pause and think I should walk outside for a few minutes. The thought comes and goes with lightning speed.
Why? Why won’t I get off my butt and just stand up?
My excuses are endless.
“If I get up, I will lose my momentum.”
I mean really, should I care if I don’t walk around while on the phone or take a 10-minute walk during lunch? The short answer is YES.
In my last blog post, I touched upon the fact that I have some habits in place that keep me on the right path in regards to my health and fitness. I also said that sometimes I get lost but these habits pull me back in the right direction. One of those habits I have developed is to move more.
Are you thinking that moving more doesn’t matter and that it’s an insignificant habit?
You can decide for yourself…read on.
(If you don’t like the science behind why moving more is good for your weight loss, skip to the end!)
The body expends energy in three different ways:
Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) – Energy required to sustain life (60% of daily expenditure)
Thermic Effect of Food – Energy required to digest, absorb and store food (10% of daily expenditure)
Activity Thermogenesis – Energy required to perform exercise and N.E.A.T. (Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis) (30% of daily expenditure)
Why should you care about any of this?
Because out of those 3 ways you only have control of ONE of them.
BMR and Thermic Effect of food are a pretty stationary number of calories* (meaning we can’t change it). Activity thermogenesis is COMPLETELY in our control and can vary by as much as 2000 calories per person! Activity thermogenesis is broken down into the two categories of Exercise and N.E.A.T.
Take a look at the chart below. It clearly shows how the body expends energy and how essential increasing N.E.A.T. is to the amount of calories the body uses.
You will notice that formal exercise accounts for less energy than N.E.A.T. does. This is why I cringe when people say that they don’t have time to exercise so they will never lose weight. As a Personal Trainer, it kills me to say, you don’t NEED to exercise to lose weight.
Do you need to exercise to change the shape of your body? Absolutely.
Do you need exercise to become stronger? Yup.
Do you need exercise to be able to complete your daily tasks more efficiently and without increased pain and stiffness? You betcha.
But really…if you want to burn more calories in any given day you need to move your body more than you presently do. Look at this chart and tell me if you think moving more is better for calorie burn (=weight loss if you are eating the appropriate amount of calories)?
You can obviously negate all of the extra movement you do by ordering a Big Mac and milkshake for lunch. Nevertheless, those eating a well-balanced diet consisting mostly of unprocessed foods will see an increase in the amount of weight they lose just but making efforts to increase their N.E.A.T..
So for those of you who skipped to the end to avoid the science parts here is the bottom line:
The more movement you do during a given day can result in increased weight loss.
In my next blog post, I’ll give you my top 5 ways I have used to succeed in my habit of moving more.
In the meantime, what are some ways that you have been using to move more?
*I don’t like to count calories because it’s inaccurate, misleading and too time-consuming for a lot of my clients. BUT for the purpose of explaining why you need to move around more, I will be using calorie burn.