Lots of people hate sweating. In fact, I’d have to say at least 80% of my female clients can’t stand it, and at least half the mean seem to find it pretty gross as well. The think it’s icky, unhygienic, and embarrassing. In fact, many of my clients apologize to me for sweating. Well apologize no longer, because it’s official: I LOVE sweating. Okay, so I don’t LOVE touching your sweat (although it really doesn’t phase me), what I mean is I love the feeling of getting a good sweat up in my own workouts.
I can’t remember whether I’m just kind of weird and have always been this way, or whether my delight at each sweat drop is a result of my knowledge about its many benefits. To me, sweat feels like success. It feels like challenge accomplished. It tastes like detoxification (I don’t deliberately taste it, it just sneaks in sometimes). And I know it means I’m keeping my body healthy both inside and out.
But does sweating help you lose weight? The short answer is yes, absolutely. Let me explain. First off, you need to know that it’s a misconception that only overweight or unfit people sweat. The truth is that the fitter you are, the more you’ll sweat. So if feeling and looking amazing is your goal, then you better start loving that annoying salty drip. The reason you sweat more as your fitness increases is to keep you cool. Sweat is your body’s inbuilt air-conditioner. By keeping you cool, the sweat allows you to train harder, and for longer. Outcome? You burn more fat.
I guess that’s more of an indirect way that sweating helps you lose weight, so let’s take a look at the direct consequence of a good sweat, namely detoxification. This is directly related to weight loss. Have you ever been around somebody who really and truly stinks the place up when they’re sweating? You know the types – they always seem to have at least 2 meters of space around them in every direction, regardless of how busy the gym is. The more you stink when you sweat, the more toxic you are, and the more you need to sweat. It could be the after-effects of a big weekend, or you could just be plain unhealthy in most of your eating choices. Strong spices and herbs can also change the smell of your sweat temporarily. Whatever the cause, sweat (along with more water and cleaner food) is the simplest way to purify your insides. And this directly impacts your weight because toxins (yep, all of ’em), are stored in your fat cells, causing them to expand. Your body keeps toxins in your fat in order to keep your vital organs safe.
So how do you put this into action? The best way to get your sweat on is with a great workout. Duh, right. But what I mean by that is don’t go thinking a couple hours in the sauna, or wrapping yourself in cling-wrap under your clothes, will do the job. These kinds of extreme crazy activities can definitely result in some short-term weight loss, but a lot of it will be water and in the long run they’ll stop working for you. A sauna or steam room is a great complement to a good workout, and can certainly speed up detoxification, but it’s not designed to be used for lengthy periods of time. One of the reasons a truly sweaty workout burns fat is because the sweat benefits are combined with the exercise benefits. Bikram (hot) Yoga is a perfect example of this, but so is any decent gym session. So don’t get me wrong – sweating is not a magic or quick fix.
If you’re keen to shed a few pounds, the best way to do it is still good nutrition, smart exercise, and appropriate supplementation for your hormonal type. The sweat factor just gets you there a little faster, a little fitter, and a little cleaner on the inside. So next time you’re wiping away that icky stuff, take just a moment and thank your lucky stars that your body is intelligent enough to make your weight loss journey easier for you. Sweat is there for a reason, and if fitness is your goal then it’s most certainly there to stay – so start lapping it up.
Metaphorically of course 🙂
And remember –
Life is Now. Press Play.
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