Weight loss… it’s really not that complicated: all you have to do is eat less and exercise more. We know, we know, both of those qualifiers can be pretty big hurdles to jump. When you’re ready to go from flab to fab, it may be easier to focus on diet or exercise, rather than both. But which is more important?
The biggest weight loss question: To fit more weight on the bar or to fit less food in your mouth?
We are what we eat, which means a lot of people are deep-fried. It’s no secret that we overeat at every occasion, including a holiday that’s devoted to nothing more than cramming our pie-holes full of pie. As a rule, it’s always easier to not eat a number of calories rather than to burn off that same amount of calories. You only need the willpower to choose a salad instead of a grease-stained pizza, while those who choose the pizza may need to put in a full hour of exercise each day to make up for the bingeing.
Most health science agrees that diet is more important to losing weight than exercise on account of the fact that:
1) Most people have terrible diets and
2) Making slight changes can quickly add up to significant gains.
Substituting oatmeal for pancakes or chicken breast for steak or carrot sticks for french fries goes a long way towards getting a great beach bod. Throwing out all the ranch dressing, soda, and ice cream in your refrigerator helps too. But all diets, by definition, eventually fail. That’s why exercise is a crucial keystone of losing weight.
One big advantage in exercise’s favor is that it builds upon itself.
Adding a pound of muscle to your physique will increase your body’s metabolism by about 10 to 20 calories per day. Add 20 pounds of muscle, and you won’t just have to buy a whole new wardrobe, but you’ll also be able to eat an entire bear claw each day without it adding up. Not only that, but exercise releases those feel-good hormones known as endorphins, which make you feel better about life and want to keep on the fitness track. There’s no equivalent in the diet world, since rejecting every tempting treat makes you feel a lot worse, not better.
Finally, exercise plans let you see immediate improvement.
If you shed 500 calories from your daily diet, you’ll only burn about a pound of fat a week, and it could take you months to feel any difference. Each time you add a new plate to the bench press, however, you get the great feeling of an accomplishment. That’s why you need both diet and exercise to lose weight, just like you need both calories and Netflix to gain weight.