The Exercise Myth

Exercise makes you lose weight? it makes you fitter and stronger and heavier.


Another little white lie that will never go away because someone is making money from it

"Come and join the gym and lose weight for summer." I'm not knocking exercise - I just want you to get the connection between weight loss and exercise into perspective.

I have just had a lady come to see me for a weight loss program, she has been going to the gym to lose weight.
She has been walking on the treadmill for about 2 hours each day and is disappointed with the results. All she has managed to do in 2 years is put weight on - 20 kilos in fact! Firstly she believed that cardio exercise was going to make her lose weight. 

See The Cardio Myth
Watch "Cardio Didn't Work" Here

Secondly, she believed in the "calories in vs. calories out" myth (as most of us do)

Here it is:
You eat food = calories in
You exercise = calories out
So exercise more calories out and you lose weight, right? And if it's not working then do even more exercise until it does. Well no sorry - that simple explanation for weight loss is great for sales but it is not what really happens.


For starters that simple explanation assumes that all calories are equal in terms of how we use them for energy.

For instance, they are saying that 30grams of potato (120 calories) are going to be used by the body in the same way 30grams of chicken is (also 120 calories). But the truth is the protein in the chicken will be broken down into amino-acids and used for a multitude of important tasks, one of them rebuilding damaged muscle tissue- no need to burn those calories away. The starch (sugar) in the potato is going to be used in a totally different way. It is going to be used as fuel for your muscles and any excess will be stored as body fat for later use.See The Cardio Lie


Now the exercise question -

How much exercise does it take to burn off a hamburger? Answer - eight hours of cycling! Who wants to waste that much time or energy?

The truth?

1. Exercise helps with weight loss - it does not give you weight loss.
2. Exercise helps balance your blood sugar and hormones which help with fat loss so long as you know what to eat.
3. Excessive exercise makes you hungry and if you give into that hunger and eat the wrong food you'll gain weight for sure.
4. Kids can lose weight with exercise alone because their hormones allow it to happen. Adults remember how it was and try to do the same when they are 30+ only to discover it doesn't work anymore. They train harder and longer trying to make it work until eventually they give up or get injured.
5. Exercise does burn off some calories but nowhere near as much as you may think.
6. Exercise makes you stronger, fitter and healthier so long as you don't over do it.
7. Exercise makes your body release the "feel good" hormones so long as you don't over do it. When you exercise you usually try to improve your eating habits as well (the real cause of weight loss or gain).

What most people think is the right thing to usually the wrong thing.