Tuesday, October 23, 2007

To Exercise or Not to Exercise... that is the question.

One of the selling points of the Kimkins program is that exercise is not necessary for weight loss. In fact, this quote from Kimmer shows the viewpoint of the program on a regular exercise routine:

"Did you know exercise doesn't work? Nope. I know you're shocked! It's the most common fallacy in the diet business -- work out and lose weight. Are they serious?

Check any exercise calculator. A 200 pound woman who walks 2 miles a day will only burn 175 calories! This means it will take 3 weeks of daily walking to lose only 1 pound!!! Just 1! Walking 2 miles every day!

Here's the math: 175 calories x 20 days = 3500 calories (1 pound)

This is why the Kimkins Diet is a weight loss Super Star! Kimkins is thermogenic. You burn more calories than regular "slow" diets -- and it works without exercise! It's true! Kimkins members typically lose 5% of their total body weight in the first 10 days! Wow!

It's your choice: Depend on exercise to lose 1-2 pounds in 30 days or pick thermogenic Kimkins and lose 10% of your total body weight in 30 days! Hmmm, I know what sounds better to me!"

I decided to check for myself just to make sure my numbers were right. If you're anything like me, you measure your walking/exercise most often by time, not distance. By the same calculations on Calorie Control.org, a 200lb person walking briskly for 45 minutes will burn actually 395.99 calories. This is equal to just under a pound a week (walking 6 days a week). However, I do not want to talk about just the weight loss benefits of exercise today. I have discovered the multitude of additional benefits that regular activity can give us, weight management aside.

On the Mayo Clinic website there are 7 additional reasons listed as to why regular exercise is valuable to our overall health transformation. After all... isn't that the goal of our journey? Health.

I learned along my path that the goal was not necessarily to lose weight. While that was one pleasant side effect. The true target was to achieve an outcome of better health. Losing weight was just step number 1. I realized that in order to obtain a lifetime of healthful living, I would have to do more than just temporarily change my way of eating. It was to be a life change. Not only would I have to switch my paradigm regarding the way I ate on a daily basis; another one of those life changes would have to be implementing a regular exercises routine.

The reason that most, if not all, doctors strongly recommend exercise as a part of a healthy diet program is because of the vast variety of health benefits that it provides. Active muscle burns fat at a much faster rate than an in-active muscle. When you are exercising and building your muscle mass, not only are you burning calories, but you are increasing your fat burning ability. Building those muscle's also gives you a natural endorphin release which helps to improve mood and psychological well-being as well. Ever notice how good you feel after a well done work out? So not only is it good for your body physically, it's good emotionally and psychologically.

Here is a list of some other very specific benefits to a proper exercise routine from the Nutristrategy website:

Specific Health Benefits of Exercise

Heart Disease and Stroke. Daily physical activity can help prevent heart disease and stroke by strengthening your heart muscle, lowering your blood pressure, raising your high-density lipoprotein (HDL) levels (good cholesterol) and lowering low-density lipoprotein (LDL) levels (bad cholesterol), improving blood flow, and increasing your heart's working capacity.

High Blood Pressure. Regular physical activity can reduce blood pressure in those with high blood pressure levels. Physical activity also reduces body fatness, which is associated with high blood pressure.

Noninsulin-Dependent Diabetes. By reducing body fatness, physical activity can help to prevent and control this type of diabetes.

Obesity. Physical activity helps to reduce body fat by building or preserving muscle mass and improving the body's ability to use calories. When physical activity is combined with proper nutrition, it can help control weight and prevent obesity, a major risk factor for many diseases.

Back Pain. By increasing muscle strength and endurance and improving flexibility and posture, regular exercise helps to prevent back pain.

Osteoporosis. Regular weight-bearing exercise promotes bone formation and may prevent many forms of bone loss associated with aging.

Psychological Effects. Regular physical activity can improve your mood and the way you feel about yourself. Researchers also have found that exercise is likely to reduce depression and anxiety and help you to better manage stress.

Millions of Americans suffer from illnesses that can be prevented or improved through regular physical activity.

• 13.5 million people have coronary heart disease.
• 1.5 million people suffer from a heart attack in a given year.
• 8 million people have adult-onset (non-insulin-dependent) diabetes.
• 95,000 people are newly diagnosed with colon cancer each year.
• 250,000 people suffer from a hip fractures each year.
• 50 million people have high blood pressure.
• Over 60 million people (a third of the population) are overweight.

Throughout my journey I have been asked if I had to exercise to get the weight off. I used to answer people that it wasn't necessary, but that I did just because I wanted to. I realize now that my idealism's were incorrect. Exercise is very important. When a program tells you that exercise is not necessary you are only harming yourself. While I understand that there are many people who do not enjoy exercise, I would have to ask... what is it that you don't like? What do you have to lose by at least giving it a try?

By taking control of your eating you are taking the first step in bringing your life into balance. The second is to implement a regular activity routine. It's a powerful cycle. When you exercise, you feel better, when you feel better, you want to eat better. You will not have to work as hard to control your weight, and you will start loving what you see in the mirror.

Renowned psychologist Dr Phil McGraw said in his book "The Ultimate Weight Solution:"

"You must ramp up your exercise effort so that your body is physiologically capable of losing weight and counteracting weight gain. When you do this, you maximize your weight loss and your ability to keep your weight off permanently.

The result, the ultimate outcome is that you can lay claim to most or all of the powerful and positive payoffs of exercise... and keep your weight off for good."

Should you be wary of a program that promises you do not have to exercise to better your health? Absolutely.


Becky said...

Good points. I think we've all seen 'flabby skinny' people, who are at goal weight but still don't look fit and trim and healthy.

To me, the actual condition we are in means more than the number on the scale. I find I can actually look good and wear a smaller size at a higher weight if I am in shape with good muscle tone, than if I am flabby at a smaller weight.

Can we lose without exercise? Sure, if we cut our eating enough. Will we like how we look when we get to goal, without exercise? Probably not as much as we thought.

So, like it or not, I'm committed to exercise. Thankfully, I have found some I do enjoy!

iportion said...

I want to be healthy not just thin.

I like exercise, but need to do it more. It makes me feel good.

the Amish eat a lot but are so active they burn

PinkDestroyaa said...

Hey Christin!!! You have made allot of GREAT points! Its its not so much important being "skinny" as it is to being healthy. Because when I think of skinny, I think like Nicole Richie or some boney little creature thing, and that is not attractive at all. People would be scared to hug you in fear that you might break! But being healthy is a different issue. You have a longer lifespan, you look and feel great and not really hungry all the time and your friends won't be scared to touch you/hug you. ;) YOUR AN INSPIRATION!

Points about Pearl said...

I'm still a Kimkins member and am still following the plan. Thanks to your 'stand' I am now aware of the dangers if you abuse your eating habits. I have added veggies and exercise to my lifestyle. Thanks for the info!

Nat said...

First time poster, but I've been reading for months. Good one.

Exercise, especially for us women, offers a huge physchological boost - it keeps us mentally in the 'weight loss' game. But after reading a few articles and finally the book by Gary Taubes (Good Calories, Bad Calories) I'm not convinced it actually makes you lose weight. What it does seem to do, unfortunately, is make you hungrier.

Here's the article in NY Magazine if you're interested.



Sue said...

Exercise has a whole host of benefits as Christine said. But I do agree with Gary Taubes that for weight loss - the diet is the most important aspect because exercise doesn't induce weight loss for a lot of people. I've seen people that exercise like crazy and are still on the pudgy side.

Gluttonynomore said...

Great post, it really is all about health and the way to get it!

size8jeans said...

Saw you on TV this morning. You were great!