Unproductive Exercise

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Interesting point about exercise from this week’s EconTalk podcast with Arthur De Vany, De Vany on Steroids, Baseball, and Evolutionary Fitness.

About 35 minutes into the podcast De Vany makes the point that much of exercise is unproductive.  He said it’s not about burning calories, it’s about passing a threshold of intensity to alter your muscle mass and change your hormone drivers.

Very interesting podcast.  I plan to post more about it later.

Root Cause of Obesity

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Over the years I’ve heard many theories on causes or contributing factors to obesity.  I’ve even mentioned a few on this blog.  Video games, easy-to-come by calories, gigantic and ever-growing portion sizes, stressed life styles and corn subsidies to name a few.

There’s only one root cause of obesity, individuals choosing to consume more calories than their bodies need.

Anything else we blame is a cop out to accepting the choices we’ve made.

5 Steps to Weight Control

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Step 1: Learn the basics.  Learn how your body metabolizes energy and what the right balance of food intake and exercise you need to achieve your healthy weight.  A good start to this is my book and the link on this page to the 8 Things.  One of the main reasons I couldn’t maintain a healthy weight is because I didn’t have a firm understanding of the basics.  I had a mix of some incorrect conventional wisdom and mythology and I couldn’t understand why the things I thought should work didn’t.  After learning the basics that are contained in my book and on the 8 Things link, I started losing weight and I’ve kept my weight in check ever since.

Step 2: Keep a food diary.  One of the first things you should do will be to know how many calories you are taking in and at what times during the day.  I recommend keeping a food diary for at least a week, if not 2 weeks.  This will be a large enough sample of your normal eating habits to establish a good estimate of your regular caloric intake and if there are any times where you are going too long between eating.

Step 3: Do the math.  Based on the basics and the food diary, you’ll be able to calculate your approximate calorie imbalance that has been causing your weight.

Step 4: Write out your plan.  This will include writing out a basic menu, a schedule for eating times, a plan of action on behavior when eating at restaurants and an activity plan to help burn some extra calories.

Step 5: Hold yourself accountable.  This is where many people fail.  Accountability will be part of your plan.

In future posts I will expand on steps 2 – 5.  If you’d like to get started on Step 1 you can start by clicking on the 8 Things link and by reading my short book.  These contain all the basics I learned that have kept my weight in control for nine years.

Good Luck

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It’s been awhile since I posted.  I hope you are achieving your weight loss goals.  More will be coming soon.  It’s been a rough winter!  I’ve certainly burned a few calories moving snow.  Very ready to get back to my normal methods of burning calories.