Diet Or Exercise? What Is Better For Weight Loss?

exercise and food

This is a question that I get asked all the time.  Most people will say that diet is the most important thing…and it is to a point, but it isn’t so cut and dry.  First of all you must consider that even if you did not exercise but you only dieted that you would lose weight.  But the opposite is not true.  If you exercise but still have a bad diet weight loss will be very slow or not happen at all.  I have seen people go and workout at a moderate pace for 30 minutes a day then think they can go eat whatever they want.  Nothing could be further from the truth. Like I tell my clients all the time, “You cannot out-train a bad diet!”

When people come to me for weight loss they must be put on a diet.  There is no negotiation with that.  One of the biggest problems with weight loss is that people do not know how to eat properly to lose weight.  The same could also be said for exercise.  9 out of 10 times when a person wants to lose weight they will go and do endless hours of cardio.  Not only is cardio extremely boring, it is not nearly as good as a properly designed weight training program.  The weight program must be specifically designed with proper attention paid to:

  • exercise selection
  • repetitions
  • sets
  • rest break
  • tempo

Dieting along with exercise is by far the best way to lose weight rapidly.  If a person only diets the weight loss comes off really slow.  When weight loss is slow people lose their motivation very quickly.  This is why when staring a weight loss program you start off strict.  This will cause a huge weight drop and is excellent motivation to keep on going.  It should also be noted that people who lose weight just by dieting have a higher chance of gaining all of the weight back plus some extra!  Definitely something you do not want to do.

When you add weight training to a weight loss program it exponentially gives it faster results.  Weight training will attack fat from another angle that diet does not cover.  Weight training will:

  • increase metabolism
  • increase growth hormone output
  • produce a favorable hormonal environment for weight loss.

Now I want you to really listen because this is the key when it comes to weight loss.  Dieting will keep you motivated to workout and working out will motivate you to diet.  They go hand and hand.  So for instance I have seen people take time off from the gym and next thing you know they have fallen off of their diet.  I have also seen people for one reason or another go off of their diet and next thing you know they are missing workouts.  That’s why when people are on a good roll losing weight I am very strict about not missing workouts or blowing the diet.  I feel alot of the influence of working out on diet is the way it makes you feel.  You feel so good from working out that you dont want to eat bad.  On the opposite end of the spectrum people who are depressed want to eat bad.

So to sum it up they are both equally important in the weight loss equation.  By the time most people have come to me for help they have tried mostly dieting and more often than not that approach fails.  So if you want to lose weight try to do both the diet and exercise program together.  They must both be designed properly to get the results that you want!


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