The Best Exercise For Weight Loss

The Nutrition Action Health Letter just released the best exercises for weight loss.  This article was based on the book Exercise Testing and Prescription by exercise physiologist specialist, David Nieman.  His list of calories burned, based on a 150 pound person, also lists the effectiveness of each activity in building cardiovascular as well as muscular strength.  And of course, the heavier the person, the more calories burned.

The American Heart Association recommends getting 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise a week or 75 minutes of high intensity.  What this article also shows is that even the activities needed be done around the house – like mowing and gardening – can burn calories and help with weight loss.

Top Contenders in Exercise

Some of the best activities were also some of the most fun to do!  Canoeing or rowing (that means kayaking) burns a whopping 815 calories in an hour and scores a 5/5 for cardiovascular health and a 4/5 for muscular health.  Get out on the water, enjoy the peacefulness, all while toning your upper body and burning a ton of calories.

Even dancing with your partner will burn 305 calories in an hour and I’m sure if that includes a little tango those numbers would go up!

For us northerners who had to put up with a very snowy, cold winter at least we can say it provided a great opportunity to burn some calories with an hour of shoveling burning up 580 calories and scoring a 4/4 in both cardiovascular and muscular benefits.  And if you enjoy the outdoors regardless of temperature, cross country skiing burns 610 calories in an hour and scores a 5/5 in cardio health and 4/5 in muscular health.  And I promise that about 10 minutes into cross country skiing you will not notice single digit temperatures!

Exercise Pace Does Matter

I’ve heard people argue that walking slow versus a faster pace, burns off the same number of calories.  Well, based on Nieman’s findings, an hour of walking at a slow pace burns off 170 calories and a faster pace burns off 270 calories.  And of course the faster pace yields a higher cardiovascular score at a 3/5 versus a 2/5 for a slower pace.  Both score a 2/5 for muscular health.  So if you can get your arms swinging and put some lively, fast beat music on your electronic device then perhaps you won’t mind picking up your pace.

Find What Works For You

There is a variety of choices when it comes to exercise.  Even the cold weather always winter activities or a shift to indoor activities in a community center.  For those who have difficulty with weight-baring activity, swimming and chair dancing provide great alternatives.

And keep in mind, that exercise isn’t just about weight loss, it’s really about slowing down the aging process of our organs, reducing the cardiovascular inflammation due to diet and stress, and having a great night’s sleep.  Now what pill can top that?  Just do it.



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