I need to know the number of calories burned during exercise!
Does this sound like you? Are you constantly obsessing over how much you have burned? Do you track the numbers better than an investor who watches the stock market?
If this sounds exactly like you - I have news for you. Focusing so much on the numbers is counterproductive. I have nothing against it, I just find that you might be wasting your time when you pay so much attention to such minute details.
But before you blow up, please allow me to justify myself.
I do not know why you starting counting the number of calories burned during exercise, but to be honest, I find that people tend to lose their motivation when they start calculating calories.
The reason for this is because, the moment you start tabulating the number of calories burned during exercise, you will become number bound. I have received some emails from readers who calculated how much they burned every workout.
Guess what? They got burned out from exercising instead.
I do not find it surprising, because when you start paying attention to numbers, you take the fun and joy out of exercising. Instead of focusing on having fun while playing volleyball, there is this nagging voice in your head that goes:
Gotta burn 100 calories, gotta burn 100 calories, gotta burn, gotta burn.
Then you miss a fantastic spike.
When I receive such emails, I tell them flat out to stop recording down these evil numbers and just have fun working out. It does take a few of them some time to break the habit, but once they do, they realize that they enjoy exercising once again.
This causes them to exercise even more! They love it now! No more numbers to worry about! All they have to worry about is make sure that they are breaking out a good sweat with friends and family.
Having a strong motivation to exercise is very important, and I am against the idea of knowing the number of calories burned during exercise, for fear of snuffing out this drive.
Instead of bothering about calories and so on, focus on making sure that you are exercising regularly and eating right.
Whenever you feel the itch to start calculating once more, take a piece of paper and pen and plan what you are going to do for next week's workout routine. Look at your food diary and see what positive changes you have made so far.
Revising your workout and nutrition plan is much more beneficial than paying attention to other minute details.
Focusing on how much calories you have burned during your exercise is a poor investment of your time, no matter what you were told.
I cannot stop you if you feel that you need to pay close attention to this aspect of fitness. However, I do feel that I should let you know that you would be better off doing something else with your time.
Even if it is not something fitness-related, the time spent calculating and worrying about calories can be used on calculating the amount you have spent this month. Now, that is something you should be doing faithfully!
Please remember that I only want the best for you. I don't mean to evoke feelings of negativity or hurt.
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