Swim To Lose Weight – It’s Easier Than You Think!

Weight Loss Philosophy

We don’t begin our lives overweight or out of shape. There is a myriad of things that happen along the way. Maybe we’ve suffered some kind of set back, an illness, a loss, or other catastrophe that left us over eating for comfort. Maybe we’ve picked up some very bad habits of over indulgence or eating all the wrong foods and don’t know how to repair the damage we’ve caused ourselves. Some may even be born with a propensity to put on the pounds no matter what they did simply due to genetics. Whatever the reason, we all end up in the same spot of regretting the consequences of bulging body parts in all the wrong places and longing for ways of changing for the better.  Don’t lose hope!

My pounds came on slowly. I can honestly say that I had been losing the same 25 pounds my entire life! Tried juice fasting and IT WORKED! I loss 25 pounds and then, a year later, gained it all back. Then I tried becoming a vegetarian and IT WORKED! Twenty-plus pounds came off, then a year later, gained it all back. I’ve tried the Akins Diet and IT WORKED! You get the picture. These diets all worked for losing weight, but they don’t and possibly can’t address the underlining issues for initially gaining or for regaining weight in the first place.

If you are like I was with 25 pounds to go or if you have even more or less than that, swimming can make a huge difference especially for the up and down weight loss pattern or in keeping the weight off to begin with. For one, you can eat again! Secondly, exercise need not be a bore or that much of a chore! Thirdly, you will sleep better and feel more relaxed than you have in years!

Weight Loss and The Simplicity of The Math

Losing weight is about mathematics because we can measure what we take in and what we burn off. We do this by looking at calories. The meaning of calorie has a thermodynamic and physiological definition. We are only concerned with the physiological one that states, “a quantity of food capable of producing such an amount of energy.” [http://www.dictionary.com] Simply put, a calorie measures the energy value of foods. Think of your body as a car and the gas and/or electricity you put in it as a calorie. The vehicle needs a certain amount of gas and/or electricity “energy” in order to run and function. Similarly, we eat and drink in order to sustain life in our bodies. Though unlike cars, we can over stuff our bodies – unfortunately. Cars have tanks that can only hold a certain capacity. It would be perfect if we all knew what our limit was and that we adhered to that capacity each time we ate.

Here’s the simple science of weight loss:

  • In order to lose 1 pound (0.45 kilograms) of fat a week, we must burn 3,500 calories. With a 500 calorie per day exercise routine, losing as much weight as desired is a matter of putting in the work.
  • Another way of doing this is by reducing one’s daily food intake by 500 calories. With this method, 1 pound can be shed in one week’s time. That is to say, if you cut 500 calories from your daily diet, you can shed 1 pound a week.
  • The math is 500 calories x 7 days = 3,500 calories

Please note that although the math is simple, weight loss isn’t. Depending on the individual, weight loss can be from fat, lean tissue, and/or water or a combination of all three. We must make adjustments in order to help your weight loss along. We each tend to lose at different rates, so keep that in mind if you try this and it doesn’t work perfectly!

Swim To Lose Weight

Here are the stats on how many calories we can burn doing different swimming techniques:

Water aerobics – 145-380 calories in 30 minutes

Vigorous treading – 600 calories per hour

Moderate treading – 200 calories per hour

Butterfly stroke – 700 calories per hour

Freestyle stroke – 704 calories per hour

Breast stroke – 600 calories per hour

The amounts of calories burned vary by one’s weight: A 130-pound person swimming freestyle for one hour will burn 590 calories swimming fast, and 413 calories swimming slower. A 155-pound person swimming freestyle for one hour will burn 704 calories swimming fast, and 493 calories swimming slower. https://www.active.com/triathl…

The list above has something for everybody, from the novice to the expert. Don’t feel as if you have to swim like an Olympic swimmer in order to lose weight and stay fit. As you can see above, you don’t even need to swim. You can do water aerobics for a half an hour and lose nearly 400 calories. If you are a swimming beginner or a non-swimmer, you can get in the water and enjoy all the benefits. And, who doesn’t have 30 minutes to spare on themselves?

My Personal Routine

I swim 3-4 days per week, usually doing a combination of freestyle, back stroke, and breast stroke. I do a half an hour to 45 minutes on the freestyle. Then I like to freestyle up the lane and back stroke down, then freestyle up the lane again and breast stroke down. If I have time and I am feeling ambitious, I practice treading and diving for another fifteen minutes. My total swimming calories burned per week are probably around 1,600-2,000 give or take. For the additional 1,500 calories (per equation above) I walk off the remainder.

This works best for me because I’m challenged with osteoarthitis and suffer greatly from really strenuous exercise like jogging or biking. My joints do not hold up under the stress. Doctor’s orders. I must do exercises of the low impact variety. I also do lightweight lifting for my back, chest, leg and arms, and stomach a few times a week. In my opinion, swimming can be an enjoyable way of slimming down and creating a way to bring one’s body back into balance.

I truly hope this helps someone who has been struggling to find something that truly works. I tend to eat whatever I want when I’m swimming on my regular routine without any worries that I’ll regain that dreaded 25 pounds that has plagued me in the past. It’s only when I go off my routine that I even have to be concerned about weight. My trick during those times are simple also; (1) I don’t over eat. When I’m no longer feeling hungry or full, I get up from the table; (2) I do at least 30 minutes of exercise a day, usually walking (3) I drink 8-10 glasses of water a day; and lastly (4) I eat mainly a plant based diet.

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One Comment on “Swim To Lose Weight – It’s Easier Than You Think!”

  1. This is great. I learnt so much in that.
    I recently injured my legged and haven’t done any running on it but started swimming to help burn some calories. But didn’t realise thats how much I needed to do, to have any effect on my body.
    I will definitely share with others about this post because calories can play a big part on people’s minds when trying to lose weight and the math of it and how your weekly activity work together.

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