I have a really awesome scale that not only tells me what I weigh, but it also tells me my body fat percentage. To be honest, I usually get off the scale before it gets to that point because I've been so focused on the ultimate number. Today, I let it flash- I've been getting close to a personal goal so I figured I'd see good news there, too.
Well, I didn't. I've lost more than 80lbs and I'm not super overweight anymore, and my body fat percentage is still 36.5%.
That is not cool. It really makes me regret my decision a year ago to focus on healthy eating to the exclusion of exercise. I figured that I'd still be losing weight, I tried to walk as much as possible anyway, and I hated gym class so I didn't think I'd do it anyway. And now, here I am. I would for sure have lost weight faster than I did if I'd been exercising all along, not only because exercise burns calories but because having more lean muscle mass boosts your metabolism- a double score.
Not to mention that I'm starting to get some loose skin, which bothers me more than I thought it would. Sure, I love that I'm nearly 110lbs lighter than when I had my son, but there's a vain part of me that hoped (hopes!) to be able to wear a bikini someday. Regular exercise during my weight loss program would have helped keep my skin tighter so maybe it would be less unsightly. It's not terrible but with another ~40lbs to go, it may get worse. Hopefully starting to exercise now will help things.
So the bottom line is- YES, you can lose weight without exercising. But why would you want to? If you're committing to a healthy lifestyle, you need to exercise. Cardio and strength training are so good for your body and most of us live such sedentary lifestyles- we need more than that. Having a higher body fat percentage puts me at higher risk of a variety of health complications later in life, and isn't that what I wanted to avoid in the first place by losing the weight?
You can start small- there's no need to go crazy and exercise 6-8 hours a day like they do on the Biggest Loser! I do 20 minutes a day with Jillian Michaels and boy does she beat me up! Once I finish the 30 Day Shred, I plan on trying another of her DVDs. I've also signed up for a Mommy & Baby fitness class weekly on Mondays. I just feel better and have more energy when I exercise, and it gives me a sense of accomplishment when I finish my workout even if I didn't feel like doing it today. And it's sure nice to have that positive feedback from my body!
So get off your butt and DO IT!
2 days ago