A new year is upon us and that always means all the fitness centers are extra packed. I think it’s fantastic that so many people choose to make healthier lifestyle choices. The challenge is that many forget that not only is it a lifetime commitment, but also that you cannot just get a good workout in, and hope for a better body. You have to put the work in on the nutrition side too. I’m not talking fad diets, or other crazy plans. I’m talking about finding a fitness and nutrition combo that works for you, and is something you can stick with forever! When trying to find this perfect combo, you need to keep in mind that unfortunately, it’s so much harder to burn off the food we eat that it is to actually eat it. We can eat hundreds, even a thousand or more calories within minutes. Sadly it doesn’t come off that quickly. Let me just give you some food for thought:
1 large latte with skim milk and sugar = 280 calories
1 glazed doughnut = 260 calories
6 piece chicken nuggets = 270 calories
1 slice from large cheese pizza = 270 calories
To burn off 260-280 calories – you need to swim for roughly 22 minutes, jog for 30 mins, or walk for over an hour! Now let’s be honest… are you just eating one doughnut? It can add up!!
Here’s another eye opener:
Five Guys Cheeseburger = 839 calories
That would take 70 minutes of swimming, 96 minutes of jogging, or 219 minutes of walking to burn off!!! Add in their “little” size (8 oz) fries and that tacks on an additional 526 calories. YIKES!
But though I mainly listed unhealthy foods above, even healthy foods you can go overboard on. So in general you need to not only choose healthy foods most of the time (yes, we’re allowed to cheat sometimes but I would stick with no more than 1 small cheat meal a week), but also be mindful of portions we’re eating.
It’s not all about the calories though. There are other reasons not to overdo it on the food even if you are working out. In order to get in a good workout , your body needs to be properly fueled. That means healthy foods in a good amount. Too much food or crappy food choices can make you feel sluggish and not ready to perform at peak. Additionally, if you’re striving for a toned body – it involves a combination of burning calories while you build muscle. If you’re working out hard but overdoing it nutritionally, your muscle tone will be hidden.
So next time you’re making your food choices, think about how hard you killed it at the gym and decide if it’s worth the splurge. I’m not going to lie – sometimes it’s worth it! Life is short so we should enjoy the things we love, but all in moderation my friends so we can live a happy AND healthy life!