How Much Exercise Do I Need to Lose Weight?

elderly man and woman exercisingStudies have consistently shown that in order to lose weight and reduce the chances of getting it back, you need regular exercise. For instance, research published in the International Journal of Obesity found that women who exercised and dieted lose more weight than women who just dieted.

However, if you are trying to lose weight via exercising, the general exercise guidelines the CDC, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, recommends may not be enough. You probably must devote more time working out.

So How Much Is Enough?

The ACSM, American College of Sports Medicine states that 150 to 250 minutes every week of moderately intense exercise provides modest results in terms of weight loss.

In order to shed a substantial amount of extra pounds, you might have to do moderately intense exercise for more than 250 minutes weekly, alongside a healthy diet. Put simply, in order to lose significant weight, women should do weight loss workouts for an hour every day, five days a week.

In addition, the CDC recommends that if you could increase your exercise intensity, you could yield similar weight loss results in half the time.

For instance, a study published in the Journal of Diabetes Research found that women who did high-intensity interval or HIIT exercise shed the same amount of body fat and weight than women who only did moderately intense cardio, but those who did HIIT exercised in considerably less time.

Other Key Points to Remember

It is imperative to keep in mind that when you have reached your weight loss goals, you must not stop exercising to ensure that keep the weight you lost off for good.

The reason for this is that one of the most significant ways that exercise aids weight control and management is through preventing weight gain, and in some instances, even more than helping you shed off extra pounds.

So if you’re really serious about losing weight and keeping it off, aside from a healthy diet and 250 minutes of weekly exercise, the ASCM recommends that you also incorporate strength training to your workout routine in order to build lean muscle mass, which in turn improves your metabolism.

If you find these recommendations too much for your current physical ability, start small and keep in mind that it’s perfectly fine to work your way up toward your target exercise goals. No matter your weight loss target, some exercise — any kind of exercise — is always better than none at all.