Have you started working out to lose weight, but your weight is not going down on the scale and you are wondering how this could be possible? In general, one pound of fat corresponds to 3500 Calories. Therefore, in theory, someone who starts an exercise program and starts burning an average of 500 calories a day without modifying their daily living activities or their diet should lose an average of one pound per week. Unfortunately, in reality, this is not always what happens… Here are 4 reasons that can potentially explain why you are not losing weight!
To burn 500 calories a day just with physical activity, you’ll need to exercise a lot! For example, to burn about 500 Calories per day, a 155-pound (70-kg) person needs to do every day about 1h40min of aqua fitness, 90 minutes of badminton, 7 km of walking or 50 minutes of cycling at 20 km/h. It should be noted that when doing a high-intensity exercise, it increases the basal metabolic rate for a few hours after exercise, which means that more calories are burned at rest than usual. Thus, high intensity exercises such as interval training are more likely to have a favorable effect on weight loss.
If you are starting a training program or a new type of workout, you may have lost fat but also gained muscle mass, which could explain why your weight on the scale is remaining stable.
Often, people who start training tend to become less active during the rest of the day. For example, they burn more calories in the gym, but fewer calories during the other hours of the day as compared to before, meaning that in total they are not actually burning a lot more calories than before.
Many people will eat the equivalent amount of calories that they have burned through exercise, either because they feel that they need a reward, or because they think that they should eat a snack to better recover and replenish their energy and nutrients. It’s tempting to say to oneself: I went to the gym today, so I can allow myself to eat a piece of cake or have a glass of wine tonight! In addition, certain types of exercise can stimulate the appetite and thus increase one’s caloric intake.
In conclusion, physical activity provides many health benefits, including reducing the risk of chronic diseases, osteoporosis and depression, improving sleep quality and stress management, and promoting better self-esteem. On the other hand, for weight loss, exercise alone is not enough and it is essential to also make changes to your diet.