Sunday, January 27, 2008

Burning Calories

Ok, so you understand the right diet together with enough exericse gives you the best way to burn fat and hopefully keep it off for good. The question now arises how much exercise is enough to burn those extra calories off? The answer depends on one thing. How much exercise are you willing to do? ALL exercise and physical movement burns calories.

What many people do not know is you can actually get to a point in exercising which has no more benefit to calorie burning. Too much exercise can produce a negetive effect with over exertion and you definately do not want to hurt youself. If you will, indulge me for a second by letting me make this analogy.

I'm a drummer. Playing drums is about learning finesse, contrary to many people's perception. Aren't you suppose to bang the tar out of the drums with each stoke? No, you're suppose to be as loose and relaxed as possible by letting the stick bounce and do all the work. Forcing the stick down into the drumhead actually will produce a loss of vigor after the stroke, causing a lack of smoothness and energy. Hard and "fast-as-you-can" produces only tenseness and rigidity in your muscles and before long will reduce needed energy for playing. The same happens with burning calories. At first you can get your heart rate going up to the maximum BPM, but then when you've spent that energy, it's gone. Evenly sustained exercise is favorable. It's not a, "less is more," kind of thing, it's a, "just about right," kind of thing.

It makes much more sense to exercise up to a point and then rest. Getting a heart rate up for a good 30 minutes is about maximum for calorie burning. Beyond that you may be burning residual calories, but not at the same rate or effect you were for the first 30 minutes.
This is not to discourage anyone from exercising or weight training beyond this immediate time because you can still build muscle and endurance, but even those have their limits.

The exercise plan I developed for the Small Step Diet is not in any way an end all to a good calorie burning exercise program. It is however an alternative to those of you who do not have the time nor the will power to take thirty minutes a day to raise your metabolism. Small Step Exercising is a good start which I conclude needs to be built upon by adding reps to each exercise each week as you progress with your diet.

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