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Wednesday, October 26. 2022
My point though, which I repeat to the point of annoying readers, is that you cannot lose weight that way.
From a practical standpoint, body fat can only be gained, or lost, through nutrition. Exercise is minimal for fat loss. I'd make an exception for those hiking 15 miles/day on the Appalachian Trail while carrying 40-60 lbs of gear, food, and water. Or the kid.
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Yep - Boot Camp and Infantry school were the only times I lost weight based solely on exercise.
I do this often and I lose weight even though I don't restrict my intake and I eat a lot of high calorie junk food when I'm hiking. In a week or two of hiking 5-10 miles a day I lose 4-8 lbs. And the weight stays off for months afterwards. I do gain it back because I eat 4 meals a day and my last meal is 100% junk food (candy, nuts, popcorn, chips, cookies, etc. I feel confident that if I wanted to lose weight, that is make my goal to lose 20 lbs by hiking for 4 weeks, I could do that. And this is in spite of the fact that my weight is normal and about where I want it to be. All that I would need to do is eat three good/average meals a day and hike my usual 5-10 miles a day. I can't speak to other people's experience on this but it will absolutely work for me. I have never been overweight so I don't have any experience in going from 300 lbs to 200 lbs but I see no reason why it wouldn't work.
I agree with you somewhat. However, I have a feeling you are relatively young. Your metabolism is high and your body still youthful. Hit about 45 and you will find out your body is not the same, metabolism slows, what used to work for you to 'easily' lose some pounds will not work anymore. It gets harder and harder to keep the pounds off...and the only sure fire way is through your diet. You'll get there...
[b]My point though, which I repeat to the point of annoying readers, is that you cannot lose weight that way.[b]
All I know is that if I walk daily, I lose weight and keep it off.
You sound like my doctor, he’s wrong too. It’s the only way I lose weight. You and my doctor have lost sight of part of the equation, the mental part. I don’t enjoy walking for exercise so I hate to waste it. When I walk regularly I don’t eat as much because I don’t want to waste my walks. As an added benefit I sleep better and feel better.
“Sleep better and feel better”
Me too, it is AMAZING the difference in sleep quality just by walking 25 minutes, especially outside during daylight hours. But even walking around the track at the health club still helps me sleep better.
Sleep quality affects all kinds of things related to health and supposedly one of them is making it easier to lose (or avoid gaining) weight.
I find that when I both sleep better and feel better, I eat less and somewhat better too. Wins all around.
Proper sleep is also a factor in weight loss, as the eighth hour of sleep is crucial for resetting how the body processes starches. That may be part of why people are seeing weight loss because of exercise even though they "shouldn't be."
I don't think it's possible to eat more calories than you burn on the AT. Most people can't hike it for 20 miles a day.
Trying to consume more calories than you burn on the AT is difficult. Given the limited access to food, your only choice is to carry more calories (a.k.a. more weight) in your pack...which burns more calories and slows you down thereby limiting your access to refilling your pack.
I agree completely. Calories in versus calories out. As part of my work, I walk a fair amount, roughly 4 miles a day. If I am eating too many calories I will gain weight, as I did last year after the Camp Fire. After gaining 15 lbs. I started counting my macros and cutting out simple carbs and dropped 15 lbs in 4 months. I also returned to my 10 minute walks after supper which I am not sure help for weight control but are supposed to be good for blood glucose and digestion. This last week I started leaning more towards a carnivore diet. While not strictly carnivore I use Mark Bell's term and say protein-based diet. Eating mainly meat with a few complex carbs. I make my own sourdough so I like a slice or two of that every day.
When you consider that the concept came from the name of the company that built one of the original apps for measuring your walking, the reason why 10,000 steps is meaningful takes shape.
My wife tries to do it every day - because, as she says, "10,000 is better than 1,000 when you sit at a desk every day." No, she knows she's not losing weight, but she does also know she is remaining active (plus, she goes to the gym and rides a recumbent bike for 40 minutes while she reads...).
If by "app" you mean a mechanical accelerometer hooked up to a counter.
Maybe I don't understand your point, but that's absurd and your exception of the hikers proves the point. This is like saying you can't balance your budget by earning more, you can only do it by spending less.
I think it is a well intended observation but lacks that unusual experience of being a long distance hiker. If you walk in the evenings like a lot of folks do or you walk a lot at your work you tend to think you walk a lot. And you probably do. But what you have to do to understand the difference is put on a pack (doesn't have to be heavy) and head out on a 10 mile round trip hike or it could be 10-15 miles one way. Then get up the next day and do it again, and again, and again until your blisters heal, your feet harden and your shoes wear out. I can almost guarantee you that if you are 20-50 lbs overweight and you do this for three months that at the end of this your weight will be in the normal range.
On a very related subject this is true for running too. Some posts and comments on here seem to diminish the value of running/jogging. If you decide to take up running and do it faithfully (that can be every day or five days a week) and work up to where you can run 3-5 miles or more you will lose weight and reach a "normal" or average weight and stay at that weight.
Having done both of these things all my life I can tell you it is more than simply burning up calories. There is something else too, a physiological change where your body becomes more efficient and works at a heightened level. By that I mean that even if you quit running/walking long distances for a week or a month you don't have a weight gain. You do lose a little of your fitness but it can be gotten back much quicker when you begin running again. After running 3-5-7 miles a day for 5-6 days a week for 2-5 years your body changes, you have created a more efficient cardiopulmonary system that doesn't just go away. You pump more blood and can deliver more oxygen and energy to your muscles and organs. You can store my glycogen in your muscles which means less stored as fat. and your energy level is higher so even when not intentionally exercising you are using your muscles more than a sedentary person does. Everything has changed and it is all a result of continuous long hours of daily aerobic exercise. It forces your blood vessels to become larger and your heart and lungs becomes larger and these physical changes don't just go away.
I would agree with another commenter...it does help with a small amount of weight loss. But I'm understanding now as I age, its more about movement to help your body stay conditioned so you don't end up with back pain, other body aches and pains. It's not about going to the gym 5 days a week and running 5 miles...its about just staying mildly active. Even 20-30 minutes of walking a day worked wonders for me.
Also, I highly recommend at least 1 time a week taking a yoga class. I'm no yoga weirdo, but a Yin class has made my worklife (which entails a lot of sitting) so much better!
My weight is best controlled through my eating habits and enhanced with a small amount of exercise.
I dutifully go to the gym 5x a week, working out hard w a trainer once, and 2 or 3 other times lifting w machines, doing elliptical the other days, but more or less I loathe the gym. Tho I enjoy the friendly neighbors and fellow church members I see there, because peer pressure helps one overcome sloth....
I do about 12k steps every day in addition and THAT is what lifts my spirits in grey February. Walking in the wind along a frozen shore, spotting wildlife in the woods, sniffing the breezes, catching even anemic winter sun—this lifts one’s mood and is far easier to commit to every day than driving to a germy gym. I think having a non sadistic drill sergeant of a trainer helps because most of us need to be pushed and taught. But I hated weights and gyms in youth when I was a marathoner (destroying my knees) and I still hate the gym now that lifting weights somewhat helps my knees...I hope that I will still be walking over 10k steps a day in my 90s, and doing my own chores and gardening, like all the cranky New England women in my family. We are, unfortunately, all good cooks so have to battle not to gain weight as we age...
As an aside, I hate the nagging of my Apple Watch, but it IS powerfully motivational. I will give the dog extra walks at night if it yammers at me that I am behind. Also, it mildly amuses me when it tells me “you have climbed 96 stories and walked 22 miles” on some of our foreign trips sightseeing on shank’s pony..
Also, for what it’s worth, saunas 4-5 days a week ( better the blistering hot real ones than wimpy infrared ones) are a huge help, ease aches fr workouts and seem to prevent colds, plus stress relief. As important as working out IMHO. Interestingly, I have read that Scandinavian UN peacekeeping forces in Africa insisted on building themselves saunas, to stay healthy. Possibly just propaganda by sauna manufacturers!?
I work out so I can still hike and walk interesting places. Don’t give a damn what I look like or even what long term health effects it has: I just want to be able to explore the world and do my own work..
> Possibly just propaganda by sauna manufacturers!?
Nope. There's several studies showing 3 or so sauna sessions a week will have significant positive benefit.
Retriever, I agree with your description of the benefits of "walking in the wind along a frozen shore". We have a beach nearby here in Maine, and I walk often in the Winter wearing 2 hooded down jackets, a thin one and a big one over that, with a wool scarf loosely around my face, and it's great to be able to walk along by the crashing waves in the sunshine. Don't know what we'd do without it.
Walking 15,000 per day average has helped me lose 55 pounds over 3 years, 210 to 155, because-
When I'm walking I ain't eating, and,
Walking seem to be an appetite suppressant.
Plus my wife got me a fitbit counter and a fitbit scale and I've had to give up lying to myself.
I missed your question when the main post first appeared. I'm 5' 9" and turned 70 last month.
My weight is once again at 155 after a drop to 148. I believe the regained 7 pounds is muscle because I had joined an Anytime Fitness gym in December 2019 and have been regularly doing weight training 3 times a week, except when locked out because of covid craziness, and my waist size went down another inch.
Interesting how that works, you gain weight through strength training and your waist size goes down. Happens all the time and is the reason I have a hard time finding pants that fit both my waist and my legs. Keep up the good work. Have you looked into the best reference book on the subject: The Barbell Prescription: Strength Training for Life After 40? (Apparently it's available only on Kindle right now due to paper shortage.)
As an aside, if you want to keep getting stronger (and you should), you're going to have to put on a few more pounds. 155 is awfully light. As we age, it's been shown that carrying a few extra pounds is a good thing. I'm 61, 5' 10", about 210 lbs, so according to the BMI standards, I'm obese. But because I can squat 400 lbs and deadlift 500, I have visible abs (not razor sharp of course, but visible). Not saying you have to gain that much weight or get that strong of course, just sharing my experience.
Not losing weight with 10k steps was based on a study of college freshman. Office workers starting 10k step program could very likely get some weight loss.
Never really worry about it. The only ones who might need to fret over my weight are my pall bearers