You may have heard the expression, “you can’t outrun a bad diet.” This is actually not very far from the truth.
So, what’s more important, exercise or a healthy diet? If you exercise all the time but eat poorly, you’ll probably look fairly healthy. Similarly, if you eat very healthy but don’t exercise, you’ll look fairly healthy.
The truth is, eating healthy and exercising isn’t an ‘either/or’ kind of thing. In order to be truly healthy or see truly great results, you have to do both.
Here’s why the balance is so important:
Calories in vs. calories out
Every day, whether you exercise or not, your body will burn a certain number of calories. If you eat more calories than what your body burns, you will gain weight. If you eat less, you will lose weight. (To find out how many calories you burn in a day, schedule an InBody Composition scan.)
Let’s say you eat an ice cream sundae with hot fudge, brownies, and cookie dough. That’ll probably clock in at around 1,000 calories. It probably won’t take you more than 10 or 15 minutes to eat the whole thing. In order to burn those 1,000 calories, you’ll have to exercise hard for close to two hours.
Hypothetically, you could burn that many calories, but it likely is not sustainable. Working out for two hours a day isn’t what most people want to do. By eating closer to the number of calories you burn, you’ll require less exercise to maintain your bodyweight.
It’s not just calories
A healthy diet isn’t just about calories consumed. What you choose to eat has a huge impact on your body. Your energy, risk of disease, and health in general are at stake when it’s time to eat.
Calories, while important for weight, do not paint the full picture of weight loss. Many foods, especially ones high in trans fats, processed sugars, and preservatives, are unhealthy without considering their calorie content. They increase your risk of a ton of diseases, like heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and more.
Think of your body like an expensive sports car. It’ll run on regular gas and oil, but it’s going to last a lot longer, run better, and break down less if you give it the premium stuff.
A balance is possible
Again, there’s no reason eating healthy and exercising has to be an either/or proposition. You can – and should – do both.
You don’t have to run ten miles a day and eat nothing but vegetables and chicken to be healthy. However, you should aim to eat a well-balanced diet and exercise for at least 30 minutes every day. That is manageable for the vast majority of people.
We’re all human. We’re going to slip up on our diet and skip workouts when we’re tired. Nobody is perfect. However, we can all try to treat our body with respect by giving it the food AND movement it needs to be at its best.
For more Accountability-related blogs, click here.