Weight loss can be ‘summed up’ by the following equation:
Proper eating + exercise= weight loss
In order to produce weight loss, these 2 components must go hand in hand. The same way a slice of apple pie seems incomplete without a small scoop of vanilla ice cream, so does a weight loss programme without exercise. Losing weight on the scales is one thing and looking toned is another. While a reduction in food may produce a loss on scales, regular exercise will ensure a toned physique. Moreover, exercising can also contribute to your biological processes: by revving up your metabolism, your body will be able to burn more calories throughout the day.
Whoever knew me as a kid will agree that I was laziness personified. The thought of running a mile made my stomach turn, and the most activity I would do in a day was lift the fork to my mouth, and then back down to the plate. On a good day, I would also occasionally walk to the fridge :). Jokes aside, I was never one for sports, and growing up in Nigeria only contributed to my inactive lifestyle. However once I changed my eating habits and the weight started falling off, my sister encouraged me to get into the habit of working out. To say that I enjoy exercise now is an understatement. I love the adrenalin rush and endorphins I get from the gym, and will rarely miss a session even if it means waking up at 6.30 am to fit it in. Much of the exercise I do is in the form of running. I am constantly challenging myself, in terms of both distance and time.
While no one is asking you to run a marathon or swim across the Atlantic, doing some form of physical activity which raises your heart rate for just 30 minutes a day will produce huge benefits for you. Whether this means going for regular walks, climbing the stairs instead of taking the elevator, or attending a dance class, find something you enjoy and there will be no turning back.
It is important to bear in mind that when losing weight, what you eat actually plays a bigger role than the amount you burn off. However the balance shifts during maintenance, making exercise the more relevant factor. That being said, you might as well get into the habit of exercising if you want to keep the weight off.