It’s science. The way that we lose weight is by burning more calories through activity than we consume through eating.
A pound of fat is 3500 calories. In order to lose that pound, a person would have to either eat that many fewer calories or increase activity by that many calories or a combination of both. It seems fairly straightforward but many people still struggle with losing those pounds.
In many cases the problem has to do with misperceptions about how much exercise we are doing and how much we are eating. There are many apps that help with this. These fitness apps will calculate how many calories are burned in a 20-minute moderate stationary bicycle ride or 10 laps in the pool; they will also know how many calories are in a peanut butter and jelly sandwich (adjustable for the kind of bread, the type of jelly, and the amount of peanut butter) or a stalk of celery. This takes the guesswork out of it all…but it is time-consuming and tedious.
Those who are serious about getting to a healthier weight would be wise to put in that extra effort. Many times we think a snack is just a few calories when it could be well over 200. Other times we think a walk must burn 300 calories when maybe it only burned 100. The more committed a person is to tracking the meals and logging them, the greater the chances of successes. A number of factors impact this. 1. The figures are more accurate using this method; the guesswork is taken out if an app is used. 2. We become more educated about what we are eating and just how healthy or indulgent it might be. 3. We become more educated about how effective our workout/activities are in burning calories. 4. The idea of having to log every meal and snack can also serve as a kind of regulator; in other words, we might think to ourselves: “I could eat that cookie, but then I’d have to log it on the app. Too much trouble. I’ll just wait for dinner….”
Not everyone has this experience, but I have found that the most effective way for me to regulate my weight is to log every meal, every snack, and every workout. Of course, from the beginning one has to know the right number of calories allotted each day or logging makes little sense. Talk to a health or diet professional to know those numbers and plan accordingly.