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Losing weight with exercise


Alternative names

Exercise and losing weight; Fat burning; Burning fat

Information

Exercise is important for most people, but it is especially important if you are trying to lose weight:

  • To lose weight, you must burn more calories than you eat. Exercise is the best way to do this.
  • When you exercise regularly, you build stronger muscles, even if you do not work out with weights. Muscles use more calories than fat throughout the day, even while you are resting. This contributes to what is commonly called a "faster metabolism."

If your goal is to lose weight, try to get 60 minutes of physical activity equivalent to brisk walking each day. This does NOT necessarily have to be aerobic exercise. The goal is to burn calories, and you can do that countless ways, such as using the stairs instead of the elevator, parking your car in the farthest parking space, or mowing the lawn or gardening.

If you are doing an activity that takes more effort, like running, then 30 minutes a day should be sufficient. Or if you are doing something that takes about half the effort of brisk walking, like gardening, you'll have to do it twice as long -- two hours.

Be sure you speak to your doctor if you have any medical conditions or other reasons for being careful about exercising.

Update Date: 7/21/2003

A.D.A.M. editorial.

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