The ability to balance your eating and exercise habits can impact your ability to maintain a healthy weight, prevent disease, sleep and manage stress.
To maintain a healthy weight, you will need to balance the calories you eat with exercise. If you want to change your weight, you will need to tip the balance scale in one direction or another. To maintain your weight, keep your scales even.
If you want to lose weight, keep in mind:
- It takes approximately 3,500 calories below your calorie needs to lose a pound of body fat.
- To lose about 1 to 2 pounds per week, reduce your caloric intake by 500 to 1,000 calories per day, but make sure caloric levels never drop below 1,200 calories per day.
- In addition to diet, exercise can also contribute to weight loss.
To make sure you are getting enough exercise, aim for at least three days of cardio activity, two days of resistance/weight training (with one day rest in-between) each week. You can increase the length and intensity of your workouts to lose weight, and change up your exercise to keep your muscles lean and to prevent plateaus.
If you don’t enjoy exercising by yourself:
- Try group fitness.
- Consider working with a personal trainer.
- Sign up for an event and train for it with a buddy.
To find out how many calories you burn in your workouts, you can check out the calculator at SuperTracker.usda.gov.
Remember, healthy weight, disease prevention, stress management and better sleep hinge on balancing your eating and your exercise.