It's not necessary to do exercises that jar your body and leave you dripping in sweat to lose weight. When your goal is to shed the excess flab but you have no desire to participate in extreme or vigorous workouts, gentle exercises can help you get a body that's swimsuit-ready. Try one or more types of gentle exercise for weight loss to avoid exercise boredom.
You might know yoga as a form of exercise that increases flexibility and develops a lean, toned, sexy body. But while you're holding your poses and focusing on your breath, you're also burning calories and getting rid of fat. This gentle exercise melts away stress while helping your body use up about 250 calories per hour. Many of the weight-bearing poses performed in a yoga sequence also tone the muscles while strengthening bone density. There's no jarring impact involved in performing yoga postures, which means you can enjoy your workout without feeling like you're trying to qualify for the Olympics.
When you're in the water, your body weight is supported by the water's buoyancy, which gives troublesome joints a break. Additionally, your body will benefit from a good cardio workout without feeling like your heart is going to beat out of your chest. Water walking or swimming laps is excellent exercise for losing weight and toning your muscles. You can burn approximately 500 calories per hour by swimming laps -- an excellent calorie burn without the sweat.
There's no need to pound the pavement by running or jogging the jiggle away. You can walk off the weight instead, and enjoy exercising at a gentler, more moderate pace. Depending on your pace, you can burn around 230 to 260 calories per hour with walking. If you want to get your heart pumping a little more, pump your arms while you walk. When inclement weather makes you want to toss your walking shoes back into the closet, use a treadmill instead. Ask a partner or friend to walk with you sometimes, and the time will fly by as you walk and chat.
Keep in Mind
Participate in at least 150 minutes of cardio exercise per week. If you want to lose weight through exercise, you can do so to the tune of 1/2 to 1 pound per week by burning 250 to 500 calories daily. Don't stop at gentle exercises to achieve your weight-loss goals. Strength-training exercises will help your body burn calories more efficiently by building muscle tissue. You'll also have a leaner, more toned body to show off. Do strength-training exercises three times per week for 20 minutes each session. Take time to talk to your doctor before you embark on your weight-loss plan to ensure it's the best one for you.
- Good Housekeeping: Low-Impact Exercises
- MayoClinic.com: Weight Loss: Can Yoga Help Me Lose Weight?
- Shape Magazine: 10 Yoga Poses That Increase Metabolism
- HealthyWomen.org: Lose Weight with Water Workouts
- MayoClinic.com: Walking: Trim Your Waistline, Improve Your Health
- Georgia State University: Physical Activity
Mary Ylisela is a former teacher with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education and mathematics. She has been a writer since 1996, specializing in business, fitness and education. Prior to teaching, Ylisela worked as a certified fitness instructor and a small-business owner.