Losing weight can be a stressful and frustrating process, particularly when you have a specific date or target in mind.
Perhaps you want to drop a dress size for your wedding date, or maybe you want to look beach ready for the summer break?
Whatever the reason, weight management is something most people deal with, and one of the most common questions tends to be ‘how long does it take to lose weight?’.
Of course there is no specific answer for this, as everyone is different, but we can first understand a little about body weight, the way it is accrued, and the things we can do to lose weight in a timely, but healthy manner.
How Do We Gain Weight?
This might sound like a simple question, but understanding how the human body processes and stores fat and other byproducts can be incredibly useful to forming new weight loss plans and routines.
Calories are units of measurement used to calculate the amount of energy contained within the food we eat.
Human bodies (as well as other animals) require specific amounts of this energy as fuel, to allow our internal organs to function, our brains to tick over, and our bodies to have enough energy and strength to move and operate.
When we consume too many calories than our bodies require, these excess units are stored as fats.
This is part of an adaptive evolutionary response, adopted into our natural biological functions from a time when food was not so abundant as it is now.
How Do We Lose Weight?
Based on the previous paragraph, we can then lose weight by either limiting the amount of calories (or energy) we consume, or by expelling excess calories through exercise in order to maintain or lose weight.
Exercise is one of the most common ways to lose weight, and while it is by no means easy, is one of the most effective methods of staying healthy and managing your weight.
Exercise works by challenging certain parts of the body through either strength, aerobic, cardiovascular, or resistance exercises, each of them tackling a different part of the body to keep us healthy and slim.
When we exercise, we burn off our existing energy, requiring our bodies to dig into these fat reserves to keep our bodies functioning.
Calorie counting is another method of weight management used by many – although it is generally less fun, more stressful, and easier to become confused or disheartened.
Many people impose diets on themselves, wherein they avoid certain foods, or limit themselves to a specific and predetermined number of calories per day – usually less than they are currently consuming – as a means of retraining their bodies and losing weight in the process.
Of course, healthy eating (in tandem with regular exercise) is the best way to lose excess pounds and maintain a desired body weight.
While this might not seem as fun or satisfying as eating unhealthy foods, the benefits outweigh the negatives in the long run.
Plus, the important thing to remember is that moderation is key – especially when it comes to diet.
By eating a balanced diet that provides your body with all the nutrients it needs to function, you can still have a naughty treat now and then without derailing the whole process.
How Long Does Weight Loss Take?
Say for example you wanted to lose 60lbs. This is an understandably daunting amount of weight to lose, and it certainly does not happen overnight.
However, with the proper preparation, exercise routine, healthy eating plan, and dedication, many experts believe it is possible to lose 60lbs in about 6 months to 1 year.
A year is more realistic, and far more healthier, and anything less than 6 months would be considered dangerous.
How Long With Exercise?
With exercise alone, this goal could take you even longer than a year, as the calories you would be consuming play too much of a role in how your body processes and stores energy.
The exercise would begin to yield results, but any benefits would be slower to appear, or even harbored completely, if your diet is still poor and unhealthy.
How Long With Diet?
Through changes in diet, it is possible to lose weight quicker than with just exercise, and there are countless diets and nutritional programs on the market these days – all with different success rates.
The ketogenic diet is a popular contemporary diet. This requires the participant to cut out carbohydrates and sugar, taking energy instead from fats, proteins, and green vegetables.
This can be an effective way of losing weight, but can be incredibly hard to maintain, and requires a tremendous amount of willpower.
Eating a balanced diet is the best way to maintain or lose weight, and this way you don’t deprive yourself of anything, merely limiting or reducing the amount of ‘bad’ foods you consume.
Diet & Exercise
This combination works best, and is the quickest way to see results. With a proper regime of exercise, and a healthy, nutritional diet, you could be reaching your weight loss results in 6 months, depending on your metabolism and the level of dedication you show.
Ideal Weight Loss
Ideally, a healthy amount of weight to lose per week is around 1-2lbs. Any more than this and you can cause yourself physical harm, or set yourself goals that are hard to maintain for prolonged periods.
And there we have it, everything you need to know about weight loss, and how long it takes to lose 60lbs.
Remember, exercise and dieting should also go hand in hand with research, and if you have any questions regarding nutrition or health, consult a medical professional. They can give recommendations, or point you in the direction of groups and classes to help you on your journey.