Fact or Fiction: Is It Really Possible to Lose Weight Without Exercising?
The truth is, we all want to lose or maintain weight at some point in our lives. However, it’s easier said than done. Even for those of us who are completely committed to losing weight, we often dread the idea of exercising multiple times a week in order to make that dream a reality.
Due to the latter reason, you might question whether or not working out regularly is the only tried and true practice to drop the pounds. You may consider trying everything and anything to lose weight if it means you can avoid long, sweaty sessions of exercise.
As for other folks, they may only want to lose weight by exercising and may refuse to try anything else that could potentially work. In either scenario, being stubborn may get the best of us and impede our ability to actually get the results we want.
But before you come to the conclusion that exercising is the only way to lose weight, or that it is an overemphasized and overrated practice to get a slimmer figure, this article can answer some of your questions and concerns regarding the truth about exercising to lose weight.
Those who aren’t fans of physical exercise will be happy to know that working out is not the only way you can lose weight. In fact, you can live a fairly sedentary lifestyle and still achieve weight loss if you engage in other healthy practices.
One important factor regarding losing weight is eating nutritious, well-balanced meals. This means consuming mostly fruits and vegetables and restricting your sugar, processed food, and alcohol intake as much as possible. This also means chewing slowly, eating at regular times, and eating the right amount of calories for weight loss.
Besides the right nutrition, consuming plenty of water throughout the day is another proven way to lose excess fat and keep down the bloating. According to the Health Science Academy, drinking enough water can speed up your metabolism, make you less hungry, eliminate toxins contributing to weight gain, and in turn, help us slim down.
Sleep is another thing that’s said to aid with the weight loss process according to research. Generally, sleep is something we all require to be healthy. However, getting the right amount of sleep each night, neither too much nor too little, can help speed up our metabolism and better eliminate weight-contributing toxins like drinking water can.
Coupling regular exercise with the latter healthy habits may allow you to have more successful results, in the end, depending on the reason(s) why you are overweight from the start (e.g., hormones, poor eating habits, lack of exercise, etc.).
Losing Weight Without Exercising: Is It Possible?
The Benefits of Exercise
While exercising is not the sole way to drop weight, it is still an integral practice to consider as it has many benefits at hand besides mere weight loss.
Some of the benefits of exercise include the following:
Releases feel-happy endorphins
Can help you achieve muscle gain and a stronger, toned body
Aids with cognitive health and memory
Helps build bone density
Boosts your energy levels
Reduces stress, anxiety, and depression
Benefits skin health in terms of eliminating oxidative stress
Stimulates blood flow
Can induce relaxation and improve your sleep quality
Reduces chronic pain
Improves sexual performance
Staying physically fit can also help you reduce your risks of obtaining a plethora of health ailments and conditions including type two diabetes, a variety of different cancers, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart attacks and strokes, heart disease, arthritis, metabolic syndrome, coronary artery disease, and early death.
Regardless of the benefits of working out, it is still essential to keep your fitness routine in moderation as it’s possible for there to be too much of anything.
Based on the latter benefits of exercise, you might still be considering adding regular workout routines to your weekly schedule. However, just because you want to start or continue working out does not mean it will be easy for you to get in the habit of engaging in it on a regular basis.
Fortunately, there are ways you can better get in the habit of regular workouts, even if you initially lack motivation:
Find a form of exercise you love.
The more we hate a specific form of exercise, the more we will make excuses when it comes time to working out. That said, it’s important that you find a type of exercise that you love so that adapting to a regular workout routine isn’t something you completely dread but may actually fall in love with.
The good news is, exercise is not limited to lifting weights, running on a treadmill, and performing push-ups and pull-ups. Exercise also comes in the form of bicycling, dancing, playing a sport, engaging in yoga or aerobics, hula-hooping, or swimming, among other physical acts.
Check out our gym locations to find a fitness center near you.
Download fitness apps on your phone.
Technology is helpful for us in numerous ways. With many fitness apps today, tracking our workouts and sharing our workout results with others becomes easier than ever before. Several fitness apps may specifically monitor our heart rate, our average pace, our daily number of steps, and the amount of time we engage in each of our workouts.
Some fitness apps also give you the ability to listen to music while you workout, record notes regarding your workout progress, engage in workout challenges with other people around the world, and track your walking/jogging/running routes. Numerous fitness apps are available across multiple platforms – some paid and some free of charge.
Whenever we introduce a new routine in our lives, no matter how big or how important it is, we may forget about it. For this reason, it is important that you consider setting up reminders on your phone or writing a note to yourself to remember to engage in your weekly workouts. Some fitness apps have workout reminders embedded into them.
While you may not always require reminders to remember to stay on top of your fitness routine, reminders can still be a great idea whether you’re new to working out or not. This is especially true if you only plan on working out a few days out of the week and want to strictly stick to those specific days but fear you will forget your schedule.
Involve others in your workouts.
One of the best ways to ensure you stay on your workout schedule is to include others in your workout. This may mean working out with them in person, indirectly working out with them (e.g., sharing workout results with one another via a fitness app), or simply telling them about how your workouts are going and your progress thus far.
Having others directly or indirectly involved in your workouts can make you more committed to regularly engaging in them. Even posting about your workouts on social media can may you feel more obligated to stick to your goals and generally look forward to posting more about your progress as time goes on.
How to Get in the Habit of Working Out
Recommendations for Physical Activity
The American Heart Association (AHA) has recommendations they suggest for both children and adults in regards to engaging in physical activity.
One of the important recommendations the AHA suggests is engaging in at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic exercise on a weekly basis. As for children, they should engage in 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous aerobic activity a day.
When beginning a regular workout routine, it is important to start slow. As you adapt to working out more frequently, the AHA suggests increasing your workout amount and intensity gradually over the course of time until you achieve your desired amount and intensity.
Moderate-intensity aerobic exercise includes gardening, brisk walking (2.5 miles per hour or faster), cleaning around the house, and playing tennis (doubles). Vigorous aerobic exercise includes swimming laps, jumping rope, playing tennis (singles), aerobic dancing, running, hiking uphill, and engaging in heavy yard work.
While it is proven that staying physically fit can help you achieve and maintain the figure you want, weight loss is not a one-fits-all. The reality is, not everyone likes working out. However, there are benefits for everyone to gain from regular exercise whether they run a mile a day or play sports on the weekends.
Apart from various forms of exercise, there are numerous ways one can lose weight in general, and it doesn’t always involve exercise. While physical activity is definitely important for everybody of any weight, maintaining a proper diet, getting plenty of sleep, and generally maintaining an all-around healthy lifestyle is critical for weight loss.
The general takeaway is, whether you are all for or all against choosing exercise as your primary source of weight loss, know that coupling your workouts with other healthy habits can help you achieve the results you want quicker and more efficiently. When aiming to lose weight, consider a whole body approach if you want the best results.