Why You Should Exercise if You Want to Lose Weight

I am aware that there are lots of people who read my emails and visit my blog that haven’t started running yet, or haven’t started doing any exercise at all.

So what I’m going to do here is give a good overview of the importance of exercise when losing weight to encourage these people to get started. It will also help to remind all of you who are already exercising to keep going because exercise is very important.

Firstly, I’ll say that a lot of people will try anything they can to lose weight… except exercise.

After all, exercise can feel hard, uncomfortable, and it takes up time that some people just don’t want to commit.

However, if you want to lose weight and you want to get good results with your health, fitness, and body, then exercise is a CRUCIAL part of this.

Remember that there are 2 parts to the weight loss equation which are diet and exercise. If you miss the exercise part then you’re severely limiting the weight loss results you can get.

When losing weight without exercise you also don’t get anywhere near the health and fitness benefits…

Plus you’re very likely to still have a poor body shape rather than a fit and toned looking body. That’s because dieting alone reduces both fat and muscle whereas exercise helps to lose fat while maintaining your muscle.

Another thing to consider is that studies show that people who exercise are more successful at losing weight and keeping it off over the long term. They make exercise part of their life and use it to lose weight as well as making it a lot easier to maintain their weight.

So if you want to get the best from your weight loss, and you want to keep the weight off over the long term, then regular exercise is VERY important.

But you should also remember this…

You still need to do the right type of exercise

There are thousands of different exercises you could do and any exercise is better than no exercise at all. However, the results that you get from these exercises vary significantly.

When choosing an exercise many people try whatever feels the easiest or the most comfortable. So they choose exercises like walking, yoga, and pilates.

While these exercises have their place in an overall fitness plan they are nowhere near as effective for losing weight as other exercises like running, circuit training, and swimming.

So firstly you need to choose an exercise that will help you get good weight loss results…

Then you need to exercise in the right way

In the same way that different exercises have different effects on your weight loss, how you use an exercise has a huge impact on how successful you are.

Some important factors that determine your level of success are…

  • How hard you push yourself
  • How long you exercise for
  • How you put together each training session – For example, one continuous effort, or varying speeds, distances, or repetitions
  • How you put everything together as part of a training plan for different days of the week

When you choose the right exercise, and you exercise in the most effective ways, you have a great opportunity to lose weight and keep it off over the long term.

Plus you get to increase your health and fitness the most…

And you get the best looking body that you can due to losing more fat and maintaining your muscle. This muscle also allows you to burn more calories which makes it easier to keep the weight off.

So with all this being said, if you haven’t started running, or doing any exercise yet, then now is the time to start.

Why try to lose weight through diet but miss out on an exercise like running?

Running will not only help you to lose weight but it also provides you with many more benefits that can make a great difference to your life.

For all of you who are already running, if you would like to help encourage people to get started with running or exercise in general, please add your comments below.


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10 Responses to Why You Should Exercise if You Want to Lose Weight

  1. Arlene p says:

    Thanks, I needed that. 😉

  2. Nicole says:

    Amen! Alleluia! I can’t tell you what a difference in my life exercise has made! Yesterday I ran my first 5k race! Me??? A year ago if you told me I would run, let alone in a race I would have laughed. Now, 60 lbs lighter and an official ‘runner’, I can say bring it on!
    Thanks so much, James!

  3. Wendy says:

    I did the Couch to 5K for 9 weeks before going to the beach this summer. I looked and felt amazing… sad part is since I have been back I cannot find the motivation to get back to it and stay with it.
    Im so mad at myself…
    I need to find the motivation and get back to it.
    Thanks for this Email 🙂

    • James says:

      You’re welcome Wendy.

      Remember that the longer you leave it the harder it gets. The easiest time to get back into running is now.

  4. Sherry says:

    James. A time appropriate message that I needed. I quit running after an obstacle course/4 mile run in July. I had one illness after another and when I improved I just didn’t start running again. After 3 months of no running I’ve gained 6 pounds. It’s really disappointing when the Thanksgiving and Christmas feeding season are just ahead. So…a week ago I began the slow process of getting back in shape for a run. I live in a rural mountain area of Montana; the weather is cold, roads are inclined or declined (no matter what) and icey. I have chosen to use my tred mill to avoid the nasty weather conditions and avoid dangerous wildlife. My dogs are old and can’t keep up on runs, none of my family will run with me, and I have small children that I can’t leave alone to go off on a run. If any are in my situation I would encourage the tred mill versus not running. I’m excited to have one week under my belt and will start longer runs on the tred mill this week. Hoping to drop that 6 pounds by Christmas. Thanks for the healthy encouragement!

    • James says:

      You’re very welcome Sherry.

      It’s good to hear that you’re getting back to running and haven’t given up. Using a treadmill is far, far better than no running at all and it even has advantages over running outside, so keep it up!

      All the best with losing those 6 pounds and getting back to full fitness by Christmas.

  5. Jim says:

    James – I turned 65 last week. Most of my life I’ve been quite active. Six years ago I closed a business, moved to Texas and became the full-time caregiver for my parents. Exercise came to a complete halt.
    I used to run daily and treated myself to week-end events…10 k’s etc. Got the t-shirts and coffee cups.
    Boy – do I need some motivation and about 20 lbs less weight on my body.
    Where & how do I start?

    • James says:

      I hope you can get back into running Jim and get back to something like you were before.

      I have some articles and running programs that will help which you can find from the links at the top of the page. The articles give some tips about how to start running and running for beginners. The running programs help you lose weight and provide motivation.

      All the best with your running and losing those 20 lbs.

      • Jim says:

        James –
        Thanks for the timely response.
        I’ll take your advice and do a little research on the running programs you mentioned. I’ll see of I can can get myself back at it.