Not seeing a result despite running many a mile? Our Guest Columnist Sowmya Ganesh has answers to those niggling questions that might be hindering your weight loss progress.
Fitness enthusiasts swear by it, trainers recommend it, doctors advice it. And we, fresh into fitness, hope to jump on the bandwagon with the promise of weight loss. However, many of us don’t often understand that weight loss won’t always be the result in the long run, pun intended. You could be an avid runner with a daily disciplined running routine and still face challenges at the end of the week on the weighing scale. Why so? Because we sometimes fail to realise that exercise and diet go hand in hand. Based on your body type and metabolism, a mere running activity will not assure complete transformation. We need to change not only our eating habits but also our attitude towards eating right to lose the weight we want.
We might perhaps be consuming too much more than what our body requires, which leads to weight gain, or no significant improvement with exercise. Yes, our bodies require fuel to boost energy and recover from working out, but what is your definition of this ‘fuel’, really? We are always tempted to “reward” ourselves by eating something that may or may not be high in calories but definitely low in nutritional benefits, thinking that it’s now OK to do that because you are running. The right idea of ‘fuel’ is a healthy, nutritionally balanced meal, which would contain a sufficient amount of protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals. Yes, the science books are right! The attitude towards food in general also plays a pivotal role. Food is life giving, meant to nourish not only the body but the mind too!
Try reworking your daily diet so they can go hand in hand with your running schedule to help you see results by the end of term. Just remember, don’t over-feed yourself. And when you do, fill up on the healthy stuff – natural, unprocessed, local, seasonal, fruits, vegetables and whole foods. Weight loss can be very challenging without the right kind of diet. Remember, the body will store what it can’t use. But while we’re on this subject, it is important to remember not to under-eat as well! A body can never achieve healthy weight loss by under-eating. This could lead to significant health problems, nutritional deficiencies, and even a probability to gain back whatever weight was lost, when the running stops. Weight loss is a work in progress and patience is key here.
How do we come to terms with making the commitment to stick to a healthy meal plan? No one said it would be easy, but the goal of a new and improved self awaits and that should be motivating enough. After all, you know the drill! Eat balanced meals, up your portions of vegetables and fruits, and don’t just lower but eliminate your portions of fried and sugary foods and drinks,drink water,limit your frequency eating at restaurants, and avoiding toxin-producing habits such as the consumption of alcohol, smoking, etc.