Castle Personal Training is a Corstorphine, Edinburgh based company who specialise in weightloss/toning and Pre and Post Natal exercise.
One of the questions I get asked the most is “What’s the best exercise for weightloss?”.
I used to answer it by saying “Squats, lunges, step ups, compound exercises etc.” as those exercises work the big muscles and working those burns the most calories. Add onto that some heavy weights when doing those exercises and “we’re creating little micro tears in the muscles and repairing them not only gets the muscles stronger and bigger/denser but burns a lot of calories FOR UP TO 2 DAYS LATER!”.
And, though technically I am correct when I say that, I now also follow it up by saying; “But if you’re exercising for weightloss then you’re just wasting your time a little bit“.
See if we accept that weightloss is 70% diet, which everybody agrees with, then surely addressing your diet has to be Nr1. Everybody already accepts that but most Personal Trainers and gyms will tell you that the other 30% is exercise and I’m here to tell you they’re wrong/lying to you.
The 70% part is right but the 30% part isn’t.
If you dig a little deeper most Personal Trainers will admit that things like sleep and stress are also essential to weightloss. So what happened to that 30% = exercise? 70 and 30 make 100 so we have to agree that it’s nowhere near 30% exercise. Sleep and stress are actually more important than exercise is but I’m going to be generous and say that the 30% is evenly split.
So now exercise is only 10% of weightloss. Yet a lot of people don’t address the 90%, they just spend 3-4 hours in the gym, do a few classes, and expect the weight to fall off. I’m not going to address how many calories you can burn during a session and how you then eat to compensate for the exercise etc. I just want you to focus on what’s really important and that has to be the 90%, IF YOU EXERCISE FOR WEIGHTLOSS.
This is why I always say that you don’t exercise for weightloss. You eat well, make sure you sleep well and try to avoid stress if you want to lose weight.
You exercise for strength, so you can feel stronger, tighter and more confident. You exercise so you have less pain, get fewer injuries and have more flexibility. You exercise to live longer and for mental health. You exercise to look better and younger. You exercise to get that sense of achievement. You exercise for overall health. You exercise for the excitement of smashing something up. You exercise for the social benefits, to meet people. You exercise to improve your posture. You exercise to heal whatever injuries or weaknesses your body might have. You exercise to release some stress. You exercise to get some energy.
There are many good reasons to exercise, and there are many good reasons to lose a bit of weight if you’re too heavy. But the two don’t really combine well.
Now before I get loads of emails from other Personal Trainers complaining about this post, and I will as I always do when I say something like this, I should put a disclaimer in; Obviously your Personal Trainer is completely different, they have a secret approach and exercise technique that means they can get you to lose tonnes of weight without addressing that 90%….honest they do.
Or you can just take the blue pill.