Let’s start at the beginning of fitness. The most basic rule of thumb is that if your intake is greater than your expenditure, then your waistline is going to be expanding (or your butt or where-ever you store your fat). So if you are eating more calories than you are burning in a day, goal to lose weight will not work. There are very few exceptions to this rule.
Over-rewarding your efforts:
An example of this is when you have hit the gym in a day and maybe walked on the treadmill for half an hour reading your latest Kindle download. The edge of seat action may have kept your feet moving at a brisk pace but you probably only burnt about 300 calories. Later in the day you see a sugar coated donut at your local Starbucks and think to yourself “I trained today, I can therefore treat myself to that donut that is calling my name”, although you probably wouldn’t eat it on a normal day. The donut has about 600 calories in it (especially if it is cream filled) and therefore instead of your exercise program working for you, you have instead consumed 300 MORE calories in a day than you usually would have.
Now I’m not saying:
Don’t treat yourself every now and then, I’m just saying don’t use your exercise routine as an excuse to eat more than you usually would have.
When I was training for Thor, the Marvel team had a specific look that they were going for with Sif. Jaimie and I both had a personal trainer who hooked us up to this thing called a Body Bugg. It was essentially a heart rate monitor that recorded how many calories you burnt in a day. We then needed to log everything that passed our lips into a computer program. The trainer would look at the calories we were consuming and the calories that we were burning and at the end of the day call us and tell us to either eat more or eat less of certain things. The bottom line was that as long as we were burning 500 more calories than we were consuming we would lose weight but any more than 500 calories burnt, we would lose the muscle tone they were going for.
But Monsieur it’s wafer thin….
The thing that I learnt the most from that experience was how those damn little calories hide in everything and were way more than I expected in certain things. I loved a little piece of chocolate or two at the end of a day and little did I realize that there were over 120 calories in a single Reece’s peanut butter cup. If I had two of them, it was almost half the calories allowed for a single meal. And that glass of wine with dinner was about 180 calories.
I have a fairly slow heart beat (pretty laid back person), and in order for MY body to burn 300 calories, I have to run at a pretty good pace for 40 minutes. That’s really hard work! It was much easier for me to just not put that extra piece of chocolate in my mouth. So essentially it was my laziness that was my motivation.
Let’s not obsess though!
I always personally hated the idea of being a calorie counter. I never wanted to obsess over food to the point that I stopped enjoying it so I’m not asking you to do that. Just begin to be a little bit aware of the things that you are putting into your body and start to cut back in little ways. Get the medium popcorn instead of the large popcorn when you hit the cinema this summer to catch the latest summer blockbuster. Have only one soda at Burger King’s free fill-up soft drink counter. It’s the little things…
Share my post! It’s the little things… by @kyfurneaux