Most Of Your Calories Are Burned Outside The Gym

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Most Of Your Calories Are Burned Outside The Gym

After clients have completed their Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) test, they are eager to see how their metabolism ranks. Most are surprised to see their metabolism is much higher than anticipated while others may get discouraged it isn’t as high as they had hoped. Soon after seeing their results, they ask “is there a way to boost my metabolism?” Boost sounds gimmicky — like an ad for Skinny Tea or the promised benefits of a juice detox. Can you increase your metabolism? Most definitely. Let us tell you how. 


Your metabolism is the number of calories your body burns each day. It has four components.


  1. Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) or Resting Energy Expenditure (REE) is the amount of calories you burn doing absolutely nothing. If you laid in bed all day, you would still burn a certain amount of calories breathing, performing brain functions, keeping your heart beating, etc. Your BMR/REE is determined by your genetics, gender, body composition and is largely unchangeable. 
  2. Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT) is the energy expended outside of planned exercise. Making your bed, cleaning the house, running errands, standing, etc. Moving more throughout your day increases NEAT.   
  3. Thermic Effect of Food (TEF) is the number of calories burned from digesting food and absorbing its nutrients. Some foods high in protein and fiber require more energy to digest. When you see an article about ‘metabolism boosting foods’ — they don’t actually boost your metabolism but they do take more energy and will burn more calories to break down.
  4. Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (EAT) is the energy expended during planned exercise. Strength training, cardio, functional fitness, yoga, pickleball, swimming, and so many other activities! It is recommended to have at least 30 minutes of planned exercise each day. 

The most variable of these four components is NEAT (non-exercise activity thermogenesis). Being active throughout the day is so important! If you exercise for 60 minutes in the morning and then have a sedentary desk job for eight hours before winding down with your newest Netflix binge, only 4% of your day is spent moving. NEAT accounts for about 63% of your day (if you sleep 8 hours). Move is one of our catch phrases for a reason! Every movement counts, no matter how small! Moving more through out your day increases NEAT, increasing your metabolism. What can you do to move more throughout your day? Here are some ideas:

  • Take 5! Take 5 minutes to perform some stretches or movements. See our Youtube channel for ideas! 
  • Stand at your desk while working (invest in a walking pad if you really want to get your steps in) 
  • Pick up the house or do some yard work 
  • Park farther away from your destination
  • Take the stairs whenever possible
  • Have a walking meeting or pace while talking on the phone
  • Add exercises to your breaks (when checking social media, do some squats!)
  • Walk or bike to your next destination

Interested in seeing how your metabolism works? Schedule your MoreEnergy Evaluation to learn what your REE is!


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