Sluggish metabolism? There’s not always much you can do to control how fast you burn fat; some people just have slower metabolisms than others.
So make the most of the one thing you can control – exercise.
Metabolism is the process of your body converting what you eat and drink into energy. The number of calories your body uses to carry out tasks is known as your BMR – basal metabolic rate. This varies between people and depends on several, uncontrollable, factors including: body size, gender and age.
Yes, to some extent. Your BMR accounts for 70 percent of the calories you burn each day. So you could say that 70 percent of your metabolism is out of your control.
However, there are two other factors determining how many calories you burn each day: thermogenesis (the creation of heat in your body) and – of course – physical activity.
Because muscle cells burn such a huge amount of energy, exercise is one of the best ways to boost your metabolism. They burn more energy than fat cells, even when you’re not exercising, known as the ‘afterburn effect’.
Obviously the more active in daily life you are, the more calories you will burn, leaving less work for your metabolism. This is why some fidgety people seem to avoid piling on the pounds!
This is the most efficient way to burn calories. Do 150 minutes a week of exercise that gets you out of breath, whether it’s running, skipping, spin classes or Zumba. Include some interval training which will really ramp up the intensity. Or try fitting a 50 minute workout in 10 minutes.
Muscle burns more calories than fat, so turn yourself into a calorie-munching monster by strengthening your body. Spend two sessions a week working your major muscle groups (abs, quads, biceps, glutes). Home workouts with kettlebells or dumbbells are great, or use a flexible day pass to try some of the best gym machines for more targeted workouts.
Don’t forget, burning calories is only one of the benefits of exercising. You could also improve your mood and complexion and reduce your risk of disease. No excuses – get moving now!
Michael - exactly - 70 percent of our metabolism is out of our control, but that leftover 30% can mean a lot to some people who struggle to lose weight. So it's worth knowing a few easy ways to boost it.
I'm always sceptical about how just how much you can boost your metabolism. I think on the whole we're stuck with the metabolism we were born with, and any boost will be negligible. I just exercise for health reasons and the love of it, and any boost in metabolism will be secondary.
love it that fidgets don't get fat! I will make sure I don't tell the kids to sit still!
I love knowing that strength training is also burning more calories even when I'm not doing anything. It really motivates me to do them, cos I'm not that bothered about big muscles!