Exercise – great for health
There is no doubt that exercise done on a consistent regular basis is very beneficial for your health. Studies consistently show a reduction in all-cause mortality among people who exercise even a few hours a week consistently.
However, using exercise to “burn calories” is not a workable strategy. I address this in some detail in prior posts on exercise to burn calories?, are we still doing cardio?, strength training vs. cardio for fat loss and conditioning, and resistance training for fat loss
What exercise can do is increase muscle mass and your basal metabolic rate. These result in “free” extra calories burned every day. However, BMR is a funny one to get a handle on because your body constantly adjusts to reach a state where it has a balance between energy available and expended. I have more in my post on Basal Metabolic Rate.
You cannot exercise your way out of a bad diet
I have seen this saying multiple times, probably because it concisely states the truth of the situation. The amount of calories burned in an hour of vigorous exercise can be offset in a few minutes of binge eating donuts!
At the end of the day, dietary strategies are the way to lose weight. Of course, these come with very desirable health benefits of their own. Perhaps the single most beneficial thing you can do for your health may be keeping your blood sugar in check and with fairly low cycles throughout the day.
I link below to three videos which explain all of this in a more entertaining manner than I can. The first video is an explanation of why exercise is not the answer to weight loss by Julia Belluz, senior health correspondent at Vox.com, published at the Vox YouTube channel.
The next two videos are a good explanation of metabolism and nutrition posted on the CrashCourse YouTube channel. These give a good background on the whole metabolic process and how diet comes into play in influencing it.
By all means, please do exercise. If you are working toward a weight loss goal, it is a piece of that effort but please concentrate most of your efforts on incorporating a healthy diet strategy as your main thrust.
I have guides which can help you get started on my Health Guides page, and of course will be happy to point you in the right direction if you want to consider nutrition coaching to get you on track and accountable. I also have a collection of resources which you can use for free at my Links I Like page.
Link to Vox video:
Link To CrashCourse Videos: