There might be some respite for all those of you who absolutely hate the fact that the only way you can achieve a fit and toned body is to exercise.
A new study published in the Current Nutrition journal claims that exercising every day might make you lazier and derail your attempts to get healthy and fit.
For people who like to start their day with rigorous exercise—be it going on a long run at the crack of dawn or sweating it out with an HIIT workout in the gym—the rest of the day is spent in trying to recuperate lost energy levels. According to the research, pumping your heart rate at the gym and then following it up with a day of zero physical activity can have serious health implications.
Now, should you throw away your sports bra and tell your gym trainer what you really think of their ‘no pain, no gain’ life philosophy? Not so fast.
Let’s first clarify that exercise and clocking in time at the gym is not bad for you. The research only highlights the run-on effects hardcore exercises can have on the rest of your day. The activities you do when you’re not working out are also as crucial in your journey towards getting fit or losing weight.
The study’s author Julie Marvel Mansfeldt writes that people seeking to lose weight must be mindful of their non-exercise physical activities, like walking their dog or riding a bike to work. If these activities are stopped suddenly because you’re exhausted from your time at the gym, then the total daily energy expenditure would be less than expected.
After a systematic review of 24 existing studies, the researchers concluded that people who engage in rigorous regular structured activity, like high-intensity workouts, were more likely to spend the remainder of their day lounging around in a sedimentary state.
As a result, even though they might consider that their lifestyle is healthy and active, they collectively reported 22% less weight loss than expected from their exercise training program.
The key, like always, is balance. You must not compromise on your daily physical activities just because you are really exerting at the gym. Be more mindful of your workout routines and invest some time and resources in figuring out what kind of regime suits your lifestyle.