When you are trying to reach a physical goal, it is important to assess your diet and you. You need to determine if you are on the right path to meet your goal. It is important to remember that exercise is essential to a healthy lifestyle and is crucial when you are dieting. How much should you be exercising? The answer varies based on your goal and your physical condition.
Are You Trying to Lose Weight?
If you are dieting to lose weight, you should monitor your caloric intake in addition to exercising. It takes a reduction of 3,500 calories to lose one pound. This reduction can be attained by eating fewer calories, or you can burn more calories by exercising. If you cut or burn an extra 500 calories per day, you will lose a pound a week. Daily exercise will help you reach your goal more quickly. Combine cardiovascular exercise with strength training to get the best results. Try walking at a moderate pace for 45 minutes to one hour each day to burn about 250 calories. Lift weights three days a week to help you build lean muscle mass, which will allow you to burn fat more quickly.
If you are trying to lose weight, you should make sure that your diet helps you to attain your goal. Keep a journal of what you eat every day to help you keep track of your fat and calorie intake. Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. You should also enjoy whole grains and lean protein.
Are You Trying to Build Muscle?
If you want to strengthen your muscles, you can't expect that diet changes alone will help you reach your goal. You will need to do some strength training exercise, such as lifting weights or doing bodyweight exercises. Be careful not to lift too much weight, because it may injure you. Lift slightly more than your muscles are used to, and do about 3 sets of 8 repetitions for each exercise. Ideally you should alternate muscle groups that you work each day so that your muscles are given time to recover. A good cardio routine is also beneficial for helping you build muscle. Aerobic exercise gives your muscles a long, lean look and will help you to burn off any fat that may cover your muscles. Aim for at least half an hour of cardio a day, such as walking, swimming or biking.
If your goal is to build muscle, you should center your diet around fresh fruits and vegetables and whole grains. Be sure to eat plenty of lean protein, because protein helps you gain stronger muscles.
Are You Trying to Improve Your Overall Health?
If you are aiming for overall health and fitness, exercise is absolutely necessary to achieve your goal. Doctors recommend 30 to 45 minutes of daily exercise to help fight cancer, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Exercise also helps to lower blood pressure and alleviate stress. Combine cardio, strength training and flexibility exercises to get the best total body workout.
Focus your diet on fresh produce that is rich in fiber and antioxidants. You should also consume whole grains and lean protein to keep your body in top shape.