Exercising to lose weight is undoubtedly the best decision along with an improvement in eating habits. It is not the first time someone tells me that he has put exercise and not lose weight. Although it may seem a contradiction, it is something completely normal, especially in the first weeks.
This is something that discourages many and even ceases activity by believing that it is not effective. We will see in detail what happens in your body when you exercise and don’t lose weight. It can even be the case of gaining weight. This is especially true in the first weeks of exercise and in people who are not used to sports.
What happens in your body and on the scale when you start playing sports?
Basically, what happens is that your body detects that it lacks resources to face this physical exercise. Thus, your body begins to adapt to exercise by creating more tissues such as muscle and accumulating more energy like glycogen. This, which may seem somewhat small, is what will cause the scale to not move.
It is clear that we are not going to gain a kilo of muscle when we start exercising. But some muscle tissue is created. This protein increase also retains water. Therefore the increased muscle mass It is one of the factors to consider.
Not only do muscles gain in volume, also increases connective tissue involving. It becomes thicker and harder due to the adaptations to support the exercise. Let’s say our whole body is strengthening to cope with exercise.
As we said at the beginning, when we exercise we will need more energy, which is usually basically glycogen that is stored in the muscles. Glycogen when stored retains water, something that also adds up and makes the weight not go down as much as we want.
And finally, and especially if we do aerobic exercise, blood volume may increase, there may even be half-liter gains in the first ten days. This means about half a kilo of weight.
Why doesn’t it happen to everyone?
Losing weight depends on so many factors that someone who also exercises may lose weight the first few days. Here diet, rest and rest of activity that we have throughout the day will play a very important role.
Basically, if we create an energy deficit, we will eventually lose weight. But if we exercise and maintain the same diet or even the first days of exercising we have more appetite and eat more, the weight is probably the same. But not because the exercise does not take effect, but because what we lose fat, on the other hand we are winning due to the adaptations created by the exercise that we have commented.
If at the same time that we begin to exercise we change the eating habits and create a caloric deficit, then if we are going to start losing weight. But if we exercise and maintain our diet, there may be that paradox of exercising and maintaining, or even earning something.
Conclusions about starting to exercise and lose weight
I always say that the hardest thing to lose weight is not to exercise or diet, the hardest thing is to stay motivated long enough until we realize that it is something that works in the long run. That it is not something immediate or miraculous and that our body needs time to adapt to the new situations that we face.
Even if your body stays in weight because you gain lean mass, you retain more nutrients and you gain water volume, think that at the same time you are also losing fat, which is what interests us most in this process. There will come a point where profits will stabilize and there will only be a loss as long as we maintain the exercise plan.
Note that This process of adaptation to exercise can last even a monthThat is why I say that motivation and patience are very important. And also gradually increase the intensity or duration of the exercise sessions, since our body will become more efficient and will not spend the same calories when it adapts to a type of exercise.
Slimming should not be immediate, but a background race, where we are changing habits and gradually we are releasing ballast, so that our body assimilates losses well, without drastic changes. Losing even 300-500 grams a week is an achievement. He thinks that these numbers will be translated in 15-25 kilos in a year. Slowly but surely.
This article was originally published by Juan Lara in March 2014 and has been revised for republication.
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