How much exercising does it take to burn fat?

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pezar
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26 Oct 2010, 7:32 pm

I am way obese, and I plan to sign up for a gym next month. I know that once a human gains weight, that new weight becomes a "set point" that the human body will defend. It's likely a throwback to the days when we were wild animals and famine was frequent, and our body needed to conserve fat. I've exercised before but didn't lose anything, but I think I know why, and have corrected the problems. I should lose fat now, but how long will it take?



Sparrowrose
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26 Oct 2010, 7:59 pm

pezar wrote:
I am way obese, and I plan to sign up for a gym next month. I know that once a human gains weight, that new weight becomes a "set point" that the human body will defend. It's likely a throwback to the days when we were wild animals and famine was frequent, and our body needed to conserve fat. I've exercised before but didn't lose anything, but I think I know why, and have corrected the problems. I should lose fat now, but how long will it take?


Generally speaking, you don't want to lose more than 2 pounds per week. If you have a lot to lose, you might lose even faster in the beginning. My advice is, no matter how exciting it is to be losing weight much faster, try to slow it down if you can. The reason 2 pounds per week is the safe maximum is that you risk organ damage if you go faster. Several years ago I was losing much faster and ended up in the hospital for a week, with three surgeries, as a result.


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spudgun
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27 Oct 2010, 8:57 am

Carrying on from the person above. Your diet is extremely important, and is often underestimated, you need to fix a good healthy diet and be strict with your routine. I also recommend if not already set out to do is hire a personal trainer from your gym if they support one. (Most good gyms do) Remeber to always start off slow and do not exceed your daily work out even ig you feel like you can continue, as your muscles will not be used to such a regime just yet. Just keep it slow and steady for a short while and pi9ck the pace up gradualy. Weight training is also a brilliant form of losing weight, but be pre warned your appetite may grow with the weight training as you are burning up your calories/vitamins. Eating more whiklst doing this is ok as long as iot is balanced and is mainly vegtables and a steady release of carbs. Comnsult your G.P or personal trainer/gym wich is the best source of energy and the besty diet you can possibly choose from your training program as each differs in variation.

GOOD LUCK.

and remember the hardest part of training is putting your traimimg gear on.



jagatai
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27 Oct 2010, 9:02 am

I don't have an answer as to how much exercise will burn fat. In my experience, exercise alone isn't enough. While not terribly heavy, (205 lbs) I have long been trying to lose weight. For some time I was biking 20 miles nearly every day. I can bike 50 miles at a stretch on weekends and still I lose no weight.

About a week ago, I decided to try something I had always been avoiding; specifically reducing how much I ate. I grew up in a family where the portion sizes were pretty huge. It's always been my habit to eat a rather large amount. I thought I would starve if I had to limit what I ate to a cup or a cup and a half of food at any given meal. But I decided to experiment with limiting what I ate.

While one week is not enough to really know how it's going to work out, my clothes already feel slightly looser. The big surprise is that I don't really feel all that hungry.

One key to this is to make sure you are eating heathfully. I'm a vegetarian so I need to be carefull to get enough protien. At any rate, eating less of a bad diet isn't going to help. You need to eat enough of a healthful diet.

And you need to exericise. On top of reducing the amount I am eating, I have increased the amount of aerobic exercise I do. After breakfast, I do about 20 minutes in a ski machine plus some weightlifting, stretches and sit ups. After dinner, I do 10 minutes on the ski machine and sometimes go for a 2 mile walk.

I think walking is one of the best exercises you can do if you need to lose a lot of weight. It is fairly low impact and it can help you build up to other exercises. I never exercised as a kid and only really started in my late 20's. I began with walking around the block. Then I would walk a mile. Then I would add sit ups. I could only do 5 at first. Then I increased so I do 40 every day. Don't try to do too much at first. That's a great way to injure yourself or make yourself sick.

Anyway, to lose weight, you need to combine a number of lifestyle changes. More exercise, less food, better food. And you need to make these changes permenant.

Good luck.


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Sparrowrose
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27 Oct 2010, 5:24 pm

Adding to what others have said (all good advice!) don't starve yourself. It's better to eat often and smaller than a few times and bigger. If you're used to eating a lot of food, you can keep the bulk in your diet by looking at foods that have lower calories and higher nutrition. For example, I can totally load up a plate with food so long as 3/4 of my plate is stuff like steamed broccoli or shredded cabbage with a low-calorie dressing instead of regular slaw dressing (ex. get a bag of slaw cabbage (usually only costs around a dollar) and a bottle of diet dressing (my favorite for this is Newman's low-fat Sesame dressing to make an asian slaw) and mix up a big batch of slaw that you can keep in the fridge and put some on your plate each meal to get some bulk so you don't feel hungry but at a lower calorie cost.

Your best bet for big food with little calorie is vegetables, as an earlier poster pointed out. Put a little dense food (ex. beans, meat) on your plate, a little whole grains (ex brown rice, quinoa, millet) on your plate and fill the rest of the plate up with veggies -- either plain or with very low calorie seasonings. And test yourself to see if you are sensitive to gluten. As much as a third of the American population is sensitive to gluten and doesn't realize it and one thing a gluten sensitivity can do is keep the pounds on you. If you have heartburn a lot, cut out all gluten foods (yes, I know it's difficult) and see if the heartburn goes away. That's a BIG sign of gluten sensitivity.

Best wishes!


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auntblabby
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28 Oct 2010, 4:28 am

dr. kenneth cooper said aerobic benefit accrues in most folk, from a half-hour to an hour into exercise sufficiently vigorous to raise heart rate to the target level, raise respirations and perspiration. this amount of time often corresponds with how long it takes for the average body to burn off ready glucose and start ketosis or fat-burning, depending on what was consumed prior to exercise. that is why many weight-losers swear by getting up first thing in the morning, and exercising then before breakfast. that is the way the army did it when i was in.

this said, it is highly individual. some folk may need much more than a half-hour. i seem to need closer to an hour myself before i notice any fat burning hence weight loss. one clue that ketosis is occuring is that the breath becomes a bit like acetone, foul and with body odor markedly increased, at least in my own experience. fat stinks when it is being burnt.

i have survived on a modified adkins diet for several years now. i don't eat the saturated fats the diet calls for, replacing them with more benign unsaturated fats. also my proteins are veggie-based and non-red meat- fish and lean poultry are fine. i eat slowly, savoring each bite and chewing it thoroughly before swallowing, and i always take a big drink of splenda and lemon-sweetened ice-cold water between bites. i give my stretching stomach time enough to register fullness, which means that one must not eat a meal in less than 20 minutes. eat only until you are 9/10ths full, as the okinowans do. i eat several small meals every few hours rather than just 2 or 3 big meals during the day. i never let my blood sugar drop too far, as severe drops bring on binging behavior. you may have read about the "3-hour diet" - that is not as crazy as it sounds. burning more calories than one consumes can be done by skinning the cat several different ways.

it is very important to exercise at least 5 days a week, rain or shine. when it rains outside, i use a manual treadmill indoors. i can't use a rebounder [small trampoline] due to low back problems. in better weather, i bicycle for 90 minutes most days, with a route chock full of hills, which is where the anaerobic meets the aerobic. more muscles=more calorie burning. with no hills, much more time is required for any virtuous circle muscle-building benefit from biking.

weigh yourself no more than once per week, any more than that is like watching paint dry. reward yourself with every 10 pounds. a reward can be a pizza. i eat diet everything. no-sugar anything. no-fat anything. no sense adding calories only to have to sweat 'em off your tuckas a few hours later. i am 6'3" and my weight has ranged from starving in the army 140# to pants-busting 250# a few years back. i am now at 190# and i feel a lot better, as that is close to my proper weight with BMI below 25. having loose-fitting clothing is its own reward. i feel for other people who struggle with weight, and i hate that harridan on tv who thinks she's a proper drill instructor harrassing those struggling on her program. give her the fat virus [yes, there is such a thing] and see how she fares.

good luck to all on the path, and to all pondering the path from afar, who should know that the water's fine here.



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03 Nov 2010, 6:02 pm

Is that the best chance of success comes not from exercise alone, but diet + exercise.

If you're like me, you can exercise until you're ready to keel over and you probably only burned maybe 500 calories or so.

A pound of body fat is about 3500 calories. So you can see that with just exercise alone, you really need to do a lot (probably more than what is practical) to lose any significant weight.

On the other hand, a typical diet is about 14000 calories per week (2000 per day) - so if you starved yourself entirely, in one week you'd weigh 4 lbs less than you otherwise would have if everything else (like your activity level, metabolism, etc.) stays the same. Of course, starving yourself like that is not practical either.

But if you eat foods that are healthy and filling, you can cut back maybe 700 calories or so per day without feeling like you are starving, and if you combine that with 500 calories worth of exercise per day, you can save at least 1200 calories a day (plus your metabolism will be faster from exercising and eating the right amounts at the right times, so you're body will burn more calories from that too - also if your exercise builds muscles, maintaining muscle makes your body burn more calories as well) - so you can lose about 2 lbs a week that way without overdoing it.



Sparrowrose
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03 Nov 2010, 7:58 pm

auntblabby wrote:
i eat slowly, savoring each bite and chewing it thoroughly before swallowing, and i always take a big drink of splenda and lemon-sweetened ice-cold water between bites.


You must have an iron stomach! When I eat and drink at the same time like that, I get "sloshy tummy" which is so awful and nauseating. I have to hold perfectly still for hours because any little movement sends up waves in my tummy, sloshing back and forth, and it feels like being sea-sick from the inside out. And even just holding still, my stomach still feels like a wax-paper bag full of barf hanging from a stick - just awful. One of the worst sensations I know! But I only get it if I drink a lot of water or other liquid too close to eating a meal.


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auntblabby
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03 Nov 2010, 8:45 pm

Sparrowrose wrote:
auntblabby wrote:
i eat slowly, savoring each bite and chewing it thoroughly before swallowing, and i always take a big drink of splenda and lemon-sweetened ice-cold water between bites.


You must have an iron stomach! When I eat and drink at the same time like that, I get "sloshy tummy" which is so awful and nauseating. I have to hold perfectly still for hours because any little movement sends up waves in my tummy, sloshing back and forth, and it feels like being sea-sick from the inside out. And even just holding still, my stomach still feels like a wax-paper bag full of barf hanging from a stick - just awful. One of the worst sensations I know! But I only get it if I drink a lot of water or other liquid too close to eating a meal.


a sloshy stomach feels a lot better than an empty one.



Sparrowrose
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03 Nov 2010, 10:40 pm

auntblabby wrote:
Sparrowrose wrote:
auntblabby wrote:
i eat slowly, savoring each bite and chewing it thoroughly before swallowing, and i always take a big drink of splenda and lemon-sweetened ice-cold water between bites.


You must have an iron stomach! When I eat and drink at the same time like that, I get "sloshy tummy" which is so awful and nauseating. I have to hold perfectly still for hours because any little movement sends up waves in my tummy, sloshing back and forth, and it feels like being sea-sick from the inside out. And even just holding still, my stomach still feels like a wax-paper bag full of barf hanging from a stick - just awful. One of the worst sensations I know! But I only get it if I drink a lot of water or other liquid too close to eating a meal.


a sloshy stomach feels a lot better than an empty one.


Then you *definitely* have an iron stomach! When I get sloshy tummy I feel so awful the only thing that will make me feel better is to vomit. I'd far rather skip a meal because I just drank too much liquid than add some food and waste it all.


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03 Nov 2010, 11:29 pm

Depending on the excercise, biking is where it's at for calorie burning. The speeds I bike can easily take 2500+ calories an hour out of me and assuming I ride shirtless (as I always do) I stay nice and cool. There are I think 3500 calories in a lb of fat. So biking at my level once a day for 2 hours should drop you almost 10lbs in a week...though there is going to be some significant lower body mass gained from my exercise. To put it in perspective I went biking one weekend once and my squat went up like 30-50lbs overnight.


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04 Nov 2010, 1:17 am

^^ What's your average speed? Real actual average speed off your bike computer? Not "I think I can", or "I saw this speed flash by on the computer for 10 seconds". :wink:

I'm asking because at 20mph average (a relatively slow speed in bike racing, but a typical one for an accomplished amateur roadie) calorie burn is around 1000-1200 for an average male rider of 160-170lbs. This is actually a high end estimate. Typical calorie numbers are probably lower for most riders. Everyone is different.

A calorie burn of 2500 per hour is impossible on the bike. Even Fabian Cancelara timetrialing at 33 mph can't burn that many calories. Typical calorie burn in pro bike racing is something like 1500 per hour, or a grand total of about 6000-7000 for an entire 4-5 hour race.

I agree that cycling is a great way to burn fat and get in shape! Also swimming! Lap swimming in front crawl, not treading water in the shalow end. ;)



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04 Nov 2010, 10:09 am

I have better than a bike computer, I have timed my trips and my average minimum including stop signs and other breaks is about 22mph. My friends have driven by me when I was going over 30mph and I've passed traffic going down a bridge with a 45mph speed limit. I also happen to be 160-170lbs which contributes to the burn. I wish I remember where I got my 2500 number but it was a fairly reputable site.


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auntblabby
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04 Nov 2010, 8:39 pm

Sparrowrose wrote:
you *definitely* have an iron stomach! When I get sloshy tummy I feel so awful the only thing that will make me feel better is to vomit. I'd far rather skip a meal because I just drank too much liquid than add some food and waste it all.


i think i'd prefer to have your ability to skip meals, that would come in handy. if i don't get a regular infusion of brain-food, my brain shuts down real quicklike. i have a tendency towards hypoglycemia, so i can't skip meals at all.



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04 Nov 2010, 8:56 pm

auntblabby wrote:
Sparrowrose wrote:
you *definitely* have an iron stomach! When I get sloshy tummy I feel so awful the only thing that will make me feel better is to vomit. I'd far rather skip a meal because I just drank too much liquid than add some food and waste it all.


i think i'd prefer to have your ability to skip meals, that would come in handy. if i don't get a regular infusion of brain-food, my brain shuts down real quicklike. i have a tendency towards hypoglycemia, so i can't skip meals at all.


Oh, I get hypoglycemic and sick from not eating. Hypoglycemia makes me snap at people and then feel dizzy and have to sit down and then I can't eat because I'm too nauseated from the hypoglycemia and the adrenaline but eventually I either get some food down or pass out/fall asleep and wake up cranky but hungry.

Whereas mixing lots of fluid with food defeats my already weak digestion and basically filling my stomach with a lodged, unmovable, festering rot bomb that won't go away until I puke it up. Drinking a lot of liquid and eating food with it dilutes my already feeble digestive juices so that the food I ate with the liquids sits in an undigested lump and blocks exit from my stomach so the food starts to ferment and make me ill and the liquids can't escape past the food.

But it's really not an either/or. I don't have to wait hours and hours after drinking to eat - just 20 minutes or so while my stomach drains. I just try to avoid drinking a lot right before I'm going to be hungry and if I do end up mis-timing, waiting 20 minutes to eat is not enough to throw me into hypoglycemia unless I was already waiting a half hour to get to the food before I realized I had to wait another 20 minutes because I just drank a bunch of water. It's not like "oops, I drank a bunch of water right before lunch so now I can't eat untill supper time." More like "oops, I drank a bunch of water right before lunch so now I can't eat for 15 to 20 minutes."

It's so worth it, though. I can't begin to describe how sick it feels to have your stomach stop processing food while it's all there in a sloshy lump, rotting.


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auntblabby
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04 Nov 2010, 9:06 pm

Sparrowrose wrote:
It's so worth it, though. I can't begin to describe how sick it feels to have your stomach stop processing food while it's all there in a sloshy lump, rotting.


i can't help wondering if a consult with an internal medicine specialist might be a good thing for you, if you have not already done so. symptoms like what you describe sound like a problem with enervation of the stomach. at the very least, you might benefit from supplemental digestive enzymes as a nutritional supplement. just a thought.