Nutrition: The Skinny on Calorie Consumption and Exercising

Many times people begin running and cycling as a form of exercise to help with weight loss.  These are two activities that we either have fond childhood memories of, or we simply know that increasing our activity level will help reduce our statistics in the ever expanding American waistline. Unfortunately many individuals enter into this new exercise habit misinformed or unaware of what is required for the exercise time frame that they are out there for.  Many of us have heard that to lose weight calories out must be greater than calories in.  The downfall of this is that many have never been taught the timing of this calorie consumption and it leads to many people eating sparingly throughout the day, exercising after work and then gorging on the meal the last meal of the day.  This can lead to consuming far more calories than if we were to more evenly space out our actual calorie consumption taking several things into consideration:

  1. How many calories should you consume throughout the day.  There are many online calculators to figure this out
    1. One more accurate way is a Resting Metabolic Rate Test which we offer at Science of Speed
  2. What your physical activity level actually is
  3. When you tend to exercise during the day
  4. How long you exercise for

So for most people one and two make complete sense and loosely mean “Calories out are greater than Calories in.”  Now 3 and 4 are less common considerations for a great deal of people but here is why they are important.  If you are focusing on improving fitness as well as losing weight you will want to focus on fueling for your workouts.  This includes pre workout, during workout and then your post workout nutrition and is important because your body burns predominantly carbohydrates to fuel your workout for optimum performance.  Once you have this part figured out the next step is your exercise time and your total amount of calories required to lose the weight that you are shooting for. Weight loss information: 3500 Cal ~ 1lb of fat 1-2lbs of weight loss per week is considered healthy¹ To help with your long term success weight loss is not about a “diet” but about a lifestyle change To maintain weight loss, aim for at least 60-90 minutes of daily moderate physical activity¹ ¹http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/public/heart/obesity/aim_hwt.pdf

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