Don’t Miss a Single Update or New Release! Sign up Today

How Much Do You Need to Exercise to Lose Weight?

How Much Do You Need to Exercise to Lose Weight?

Exercise to Lose Weight

It can be difficult to work an exercise routine into your schedule with all of your obligations, but you really don't need to exercise that much to lose weight. Keep in mind that if you are trying to lose weight you will need to exercise more than what you're used to, because you are trying to adjust your body's fat metabolism and weight set point. This will require more effort during exercise than what you're used to, but if you split that effort up throughout the week it ends up being more manageable. If you are doing light cardio, or low intensity workouts, you will need to spend more time in the gym than those who perform high intensity workouts.

250 minutes per week of moderate exercise is recommended

There have been hundreds of studies on the duration of exercise and the resulting weight loss, and many studies have found that 200 to 300 minutes of exercise per week on average is best for long term fat loss. This recommendation is based on ACSM research, (the American College of Sports Medicine), and it was also found that exercising less than 200 minutes per week provided "€œonly modest"€ weight loss. The average recommended amount was around 250 minutes per week which provided most adults with significant weight loss. These are the recommendations for exercise duration for moderate exercise, but the intensity of a workout is just as important as the duration, and the recommendation in this study was a combination of both aerobic and resistance training.

Try interval workouts to lose weight

Interval workouts have become a popular form of exercise for weight loss, and these workouts involve exercising at a very high intensity for anywhere from 10 to 40 seconds and then resting for no more than 40 seconds. The type of exercises that you might do for an interval workout for weight loss will vary; in some cases you might do a cardio workout such as sprinting, biking, rowing, or swimming, and in other cases you might do a resistance training workout at a lighter weight. Studies have shown that interval workouts may increase your fat metabolism for several hours after your workout, and this is a distinct advantage compared to traditional workouts.

High intensity interval workouts burn fat faster

If you decide to try high intensity interval training (HIIT) for weight loss, you're making a good decision because you will be able to burn fat more quickly than other forms of exercise. HIIT has shown to increase fat metabolism by 24 hours or more after the workout, and it also results in a boost of natural HGH by up to 450 percent or more in 24 hours. The HGH boost is thought to be one of the biggest contributors to fat loss because HGH increases fat metabolism dramatically while also help the body recover from an intense workout by building muscle quickly and helping the tissues regenerate. There are dozens of other reasons why you might want to consider HIIT training for weight loss, including its efficiency, ability to do it anywhere, and many other reasons.

HIIT is more efficient than other workouts

Another unique aspect of HIIT is that it is more efficient than other types of workouts. You are likely going to spend only 10 to 40 minutes maximum on any type of HIIT training program, and if you are just starting out a 10 minute workout will likely have you almost completely exhausted. The goal with any HIIT exercise program is to have you almost completely drained of energy at the end of the workout, and as the exercises become easier and easier you can start scaling it up to 40 minutes. Even experienced athletes will find a 40 minutes HIIT exercise program to be difficult.

High intensity workouts fit better into your schedule

If you don't have much time like most of us, high intensity workouts can definitely fit into your schedule. Just 15 minutes of HIIT training a minimum of three times per week is proven to be effective for staying healthy, and if you are trying to lose weight you may need to increase the duration slightly, but you will still very likely be able to fit the workout into your schedule without much hassle. If you simply don't have the time for the 250 minutes per week of moderate exercise recommended by the ACSM, then high intensity interval training may be right for you, but before you start any high intensity program you absolutely need to get clearance from a medical doctor.

If you really don't have the time, the HCG diet can be a great option

Many people are really pressed for time or simply don't want to exercise to lose weight and would rather diet. The HCG diet also a great option for people with very busy schedules because it really doesn't require much time or effort on the dieter's part. The only requirement for the HCG diet is to perform the daily injections or take the sublingual drops and stick to the diet protocol's requirements of 500 calories per day from a specific food list. This is often an easier option than exercise and it can even bring weight loss results in faster; the weight loss rate is often at close to 1 pound per day while exercise is often less effective and usually results in 1 to 2 pounds of weight loss per week, maximum. The HCG diet will always beat the speed of even the best workout program because it targets the direct source of obesity and burns a substantial amount of fat from day 1 of the VLCD.

No matter what, include resistance  training

Resistance training or strength training is always important for both men and women when it comes to weight loss. It doesn't have to be intense resistance training, but even light resistance training will ensure that muscle mass is maintained while the weight loss is occurring. Also, adding more muscle helps the body burn more calories and resistance training also results in a higher rate of HGH production, and as previously mentioned HGH has several fat metabolism boosting effects. Strength training should be a core part of your exercise routine, and you should ideally mix it with some form of cardiovascular workout.

If you don't want to exercise at all, try the HCG diet

The HCG diet can help you get back to a normal weight faster than most exercise programs, and you won't have to exercise at all during the diet. The diet is six to nine weeks in length (including Phase 3 - maintenance) and although you may need light regular exercise after the diet is finished in order to maintain your weight, you definitely won't need to in order to lose weight. The diet can be a great stepping stone to helping you get back on track into a healthy lifestyle, and most dieters find exercise to be much easier once they have lost 15 or more pounds after the diet is over because their mobility often dramatically improves. For more information on how the HCG diet can help you lose weight quickly and get back in shape, click here.

About the author

Dr. Constance Odom, MD

5 min read