A recent article in Time, ” Why you shouldn’t exercise to lose weight” references studies showing that overweight individuals didn’t lose weight by exercising. Don’t let this title deter you from working out. We all know that the primary driver of weight loss is related to what and how much we’re eating. You can’t out-exercise a bad diet.
BUT… don’t forget about the myriad benefits of exercise:
“It’s been shown to reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, dementia, depression, colds, back pain, osteoporosis and premature death. It can also improve sleep, boost energy, fend off old-age feebleness and even enhance our sex lives.
What’s more, while it’s not very helpful for melting away pounds, exercise can prevent weight gain and improve your appearance by increasing muscle mass and reducing visceral fat, the type indicated by a large waist that’s linked to heart disease and diabetes.
Imagine a pill with this long list of benefits. We’d all be clamoring for it.” SOURCE
I had my metabolism measured this summer when I did the BodPod and Quark RMR tests at UK. After 4 years as a vegan, I wanted to e sure my muscle mass was in good shape & to measure my resting metabolic rate. On that date, my RMR was 1495 calories and I was in a state of fat burn – BUT that was just a snapshot in time. It didn’t give me much insight into how my body responds to a variety of foods & activities from day to day.
Enter the LUMEN. “Lumen’s technology has been scientifically proven to accurately measure metabolic fuel usage when compared to the gold standard (RER) for measuring metabolism in multiple validation studies. With Lumen’s daily insights, you will improve your metabolism by improving metabolic flexibility: your body’s ability to shift efficiently between using fats or carbs as a source of energy, and see in real-time how different meals, workouts & activity levels impact your metabolism.”
I’ve been tracking my measurements randomly for the past week. These are just a couple of my personal insights:
If I eat too many carbs (low fat/protein & carb-heavy dinner followed by lots of frozen mango for dessert) late in the day with no activity afterward, I am still burning those carbs off in the morning (ideally, you’d wake up in a fat burning state most days if weight loss is a goal).
Even if I wake up burning carbs, I’m generally able to switch over to fat burning if I do HIIT or cardio in a fasted state in the morning.
The Lumen app offers a daily meal plan recommendation based upon your goals & the state in which you wake up in the morning. I LOVE the fact that I was able to tell the app about my dietary restrictions (you can let it know if you don’t eat meat, nuts, gluten, dairy, and many other common dietary preferences).
This week, I am going to continue taking my morning measurement & at least somewhat following the suggested dietary pattern for the day. While I’ve done carb cycling in the past, I am really looking forward to seeing my personalized real-time results that only the Lumen offers, instead of just guessing.
If you’d like to give the Lumen a try, you can order one at my link HERE and/or use the code “gretchen” at checkout for 10% off!
“On average, people lose about 30 percent of their muscle power between ages 50 and 70. But this doesn’t have to be; inactivity and too little protein hasten the process. Keep muscles healthy with regular strength training — a smart step that 79 percent of people in their 50s skip.” source
That muscle loss leads to decreased metabolism, and often times we take in more calories than we realize. While it’s not good to be a slave to My Fitness Pal, it can be eye-opening to track every bite & sip you take in for a few days to get a true picture of your calories & macros.
It’s also important to vary your exercise, making sure to include strength/resistance training with weights to build muscle!!
*as always, ask your doc before starting or changing your exercise routine or diet*