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Will exercise help me to manage my weight?

The short answer to this question is yes. Most importantly, exercise can help keep weight off in the long term. Exercise can help you manage your weight in two ways:

  • It burns calories and contributes to weight loss
  • It helps to raise your metabolic rate

Metabolic Rate

Much of the weight re-gain that people experience after dieting is due to the metabolism slowing down and the loss of muscle that occurs. In general terms – if you lose muscle, your metabolism will slow down. This is why ‘quick fix’ weight-loss diets are ineffective in the long-term. People who diet without exercising will almost always put all the weight back on; some may even gain extra weight.

Exercise increases your lean muscle mass. Muscle weighs more than fat so it is possible that your weight could actually increase in the short-term following exercise. In which case, do not be disheartened – you need to stop thinking in terms of body weight and start thinking in terms of fitness body composition* which are much more important.

*Body composition is the amount of lean muscle tissue in the body in comparison to the amount of fat.

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