Back in the day (you know which “day” I am talking about) the word exercise probably did not exist in the context it does today. This is because our daily lives revolved around movement. People didn’t have to go to a torturous 60 min spin class because their daily activities where likely much more strenuous. Today, I am sure you will agree that most of our daily tasks are likely to include a lot of sitting, driving from place to place and taking elevators/escalators rather than stairs.
I recently read an article that included a paragraph with the heading: Exercise Burns Most of Our Calories -Not Even Close. This of course tickled my annoyance bone because it is very misleading.The author states that participating in exercise only burns up to 30% of your daily calories and that most of calories burned comes from normal bodily functions, simple tasks like making breakfast and walking to get the mail.
Let me clarify that I am not disputing this. You do have a BMR (basal metabolic rate) or often called a RMR (resting metabolic rate). This is the rate at which you burn calories ‘at rest.’ Sure it’s true that you burn calories even when you are sleeping. However, I am trying to make you aware of two facts. Our society has eliminated a lot of these everyday “inconveniences” such as walking up stairs, from our lifestyle. We have become a society where we have to schedule in activity because we have become sedentary in our dailylives. AND the other fact is that there is a lot of overindulging or overeating going on and so you are eating well beyond your BMR.
This article suggested to me that you shouldn’t focus on exercising but on ramping up your everyday tasks. While I agree, you certainly should, I don’t want people thinking “I just walked to the mailbox and back and spent 2 minutes brushing my teeth, I’m good.” It is important that you understand that in order to maintain or achieve a healthy weight, you need to eat within your recommended calories and make an effort to MOVE.