Yes, it’s true. It’s actually possible for someone to gain fat weight after increasing his or her daily exercise

The problem is overcompensation. A person goes to the gym and works out for an hour. Exhausted, that same person might then cross the street and pick up a BigMac with fries and a sugary soda. This person doesn’t feel bad about eating fast food because he or she is convinced they have “earned it,” and that they burned off enough calories at the gym to compensate for the meal.

But the calories don’t add up. Jogging for an hour straight will burn between 398-500 calories. A BigMac alone has a whopping 563 calories in it. If you add a large soda and fries the total is upwards of 1,123 calories!

This type of calorie overcompensation can turn work-outs into serious weight gains.

In order to effectively lose weight through exercise a person needs to burn more calories throughout the day than they consume.

Most likely, if you are an overweight person trying to lose weight you are already eating more calories than you burn in a day. Resulting in stored excess body fat.

The trick is to monitor your calorie output and input in-order to determine if you’re consuming too few or too many calories.

Calories Burned per Hour Based On Exercise

The above chart can be useful when trying to determine how many calories you burn daily. For example, if you’re a 130-pound person who spends 8-hours sitting at a desk at work, does 1-hour of moderate exercise, and gets 8-hours of sleep- you’re burning on average between 1,600-2,500 calories daily.

If we refer back to the McDonalds BigMac meal that came in at 1,123 calories, that means even with exercise you are consuming the majority of your daily recommended calories in one sitting with one meal. (Not to mention a BigMac, fries and soda have no redeeming health benefits and lack necessary nutrition for a healthy diet).

BigMac vs. calorie Equivalent Foods

McDonald’s meals aren’t the only fast-food cravings that will set your weight loss goal back.

A “standard” Chipotle Burrito is over 1,000 calories, a Fiesta Taco Salad with Beef at Taco Bell is close to 800 calories, a Double Whopper Sandwich with cheese from Burger King is 930 calories, even the average Subway sandwich will cost you close to 1,000 calories!

Fast foods encourage us to consume excessive unhealthy calories and fats. If you’re trying to lose weight and are instead gaining weight, I recommend ditching fast foods entirely. Treat fast foods as a “special occasion” meal, not something that you consume daily.

Working out regularly while consuming a diet of healthy foods will lead to weight loss.

A study published in Obesity Magazine compared the weight loss effects of subjects in four categories: diet only, exercise only, diet plus exercise, and a control group that didn’t change anything. The study found that on average over the course of a year, the diet-only group lost about 15 pounds, the exercise group lost four pounds, and the diet and exercise group lost nearly 20 pounds.

The exercise only group lost the least amount of weight, four pounds is almost nothing for a study that took place over a full year. This study highlights the weight loss factor that most people overlook:

A healthy diet can be even more important than exercise when it comes to losing weight.


Calculate your exact standing vs. sitting calories here!

For more specific physical activity information and relative calorie burning click here!