Physical activity and weight loss

To reduce weight effectively it is important that the amount of energy that you use up during the day is greater then the amount of energy you take in through your food. Physical activity and exercise is crucial in helping to increase energy expenditure by burning calories and can help to use up stored fat. Physical activity is also important to build muscle which will increase your metabolic rate and will increase the amount of calories you burn even while not exercising!!!

Stamina and cardiovascular exercise is best for weight loss but strength and flexibility based activities are also important.

Stamina/CV activities
Walking, swimming, cycling, jogging, housework, gardening

Strength activities
Body weight exercises, free weights

Flexibility activities
Swimming, pilates, yoga, tai chi, stretching

Walking is an ideal form of exercise if you are starting to increase your physical activity levels and its free!! Look for opportunities to be active during your day, for example park at the far end of the car park or get of the bus a stop earlier.

You should be aiming to achieve 30 minutes of moderate intensity activity on 5 days of the week. You can break this down into two lots of 15 minutes to make it more manageable in the early stages. Moderate intensity means that you should be breathing harder and feeling slightly warmer, it should not be hard and you should be able to hold a conversation throughout.

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