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Why Burning Calories in the Gym Is a Waste of Time

Whoa—did we just say what you thought we said? That burning calories in the gym is "a waste of time"?
Well, stay with us here. Burning calories in the gym is great. But the energy you expend while you're in the gym isn't as simple as those tired old LED readouts on the treadmill might make it seem. See, we all have three "burns" that make up our metabolism.

Burn One
Basal (resting) metabolism: Your basal metabolic rate (BMR) accounts for 60 to 70 percent of your overall metabolism, and surprisingly, it's the number of calories you burn doing nothing at all: lying in bed staring at the ceiling or vegging on the couch watching TV. As we said earlier, it's fueled by your body's inner workings—your heart beating, your lungs breathing, even your cells dividing.

Burn Two
Digestive metabolism, or thermic effect of food (TEF): Simply digesting food—turning carbs into sugar and turning protein into amino acids—typically burns 10 to 15 percent of your daily calories. Digesting protein burns more calories than digesting carbohydrates or fat—about 25 calories for every 100 consumed. Digesting carbohydrates and fat burns about 10 to 15 calories for every 100 consumed.

So pause a moment to think about this: Between 70 and 85 percent of the calories you burn every day come from either eating or just hanging around doing nothing.

So, what about the other 15 to 30 percent?

Burn Three
Exercise and movement metabolism: This part of your metabolism includes both workouts at the gym and other more enjoyable physical activities (we call this exercise-activity thermogenesis, or EAT) along with countless incidental movements throughout the day, like turning the pages of this book and twiddling your thumbs (that's called non-exercise-activity thermogenesis, or NEAT).

So, here's an interesting question: Why is it so hard to lose weight just by exercising? Why are there so many fat people in the gym? The answer is simple. Exercise only targets 15 to 30 percent of your fat burn. Up to 85 percent of the calories you burn in a given day have nothing to do with moving your body!

So, skip the gym, right? Not quite.

Tongfang Health Technology (Beijing) Co.,Ltd