Fitness and Weight Management
What is weight management?
Weight management is all of these things:
- Attempt to lose fat without losing muscle.
- Attempt to gain muscle without gaining fat.
- Attempt to gain muscle and lose fat at the same time.
- Eating a nutritionally perfect diet that complements your weight management effort.
- Practicing a lifestyle that complements your weight management effort.
The reality is that most people are not seriously overweight. Their body might have developed some unwanted, attention-grabbing bulk, and has gone soft and spongy losing a lot (if not all) of its tone and firmness. Fitness and weight management is science, art and technique all rolled into one that enables you to achieve your end goal, be it to lose fat or to maintain your current weight and hold onto every ounce of precious muscle that you currently have.
Is the “Biggest Loser” program on TV a lot of hot air then? Most of us have seen these so called ‘Biggest loser’ reality show/ weight loss contests. Obese people drop huge and we really mean huge amounts of weight – like 10 to 20 lbs in a week!! Now compare this to a real fitness and weight management program – you’d be lucky to drop a pound in the first week. Most people equate a drop in weight with success. Not many of us stop to consider the difference between fat weight or muscle weight or even weight of water loss or loss of weight due to loss of bone density that occurs due to dangerous levels of starvation or eating unbalanced diets.
The problem with weight loss contests, especially the popular diet and fitness programs on TV is that they’re obsessed with the weighing scale. You rarely see any discussion on body mass composition i.e. fat-to-muscle ratio. The ideal scenario is when the contestants drop a lot of fat without any drop in the muscle – these would be the real winners. Winners are also those who maintain their weight but have substantially reduced the fat in their body i.e. a tremendous improvement in their body composition. The obsession with the weighing machine as the ultimate judge has to stop because it is downright dangerous. Fitness and weight management therefore is all about TRANSFORMATION – it’s about either losing fat without loss of any muscle or LOSING FAT and ADDING MUSCLE. The scale has minimal role to play.
So don’t calories matter any more? Of course they do – but not in as simplistic a manner as the TV host makes it out to be. Calories do matter, but it’s much more complicated than simple addition and subtraction because there are things like hormonal fluctuations and “energy partitioning” that need to be taken into account. These differ from individual to individual and it takes in-depth professional knowledge to figure these things out which is why we say you should consult your doctor, a good nutritionist and a qualified physical fitness trainer before you embark on a body transformation plan. Remember also, there are no miracles here. Assuming you have been faithful and dedicated to the program chalked out for you, give yourself at least six months to see any changes. This is the right way to do it.