Why you should know everything about N.E.A.T
When people embark on their fat loss journey typically, fat loss is focussed around what you eat and what workouts you are doing. The common declaration of “right, I’m going on a diet and going to the gym”. First of all, its great you are trying to make a change to your health and wellness, but what if I said you can make a change that is much simpler.
What Is N.E.A.T?
What on earth is N.E.A.T? I hear you cry. Well, you should be very interested in hearing about N.E.A.T.
Firstly, let me introduce you to E.A.T: Energy Activity Thermogenesis is energy we expend through intentional acts of energy expenditure, such as going for a run, going to the gym and doing a resistance session, doing a spin class. This is the typical focus for people trying to make a body composition change right?
N.E.A.T however, – Non-exercise activity thermogenesis – is the energy expenditure for things outside of these activities, so when you aren’t at the gym – hence “Non Exercise”. Things like walking up the stairs, mowing the lawn, cleaning the house. These are all activities that burn calories and use energy and often more than we expect!
Due to the way modern life has become, our daily lives impact our N.E.A.T levels dramatically. Its easier than ever to have food delivered to the house so we don’t have to walk around the supermarket to get out food. It is easier then ever to drive to the supermarket to get the food and we park as close as we can to the main entrance to limit how far we have to walk.
At work, predominantly a sedentary activity for most, N.E.A.T levels during working hours are often terrible!
Yeah, but I go to the gym 4 times a week, I don’t need to know this…
You might think that going to the gym a few times a week makes up for the 8-12 hours you spend sitting down every day, and that you don’t need to take the stairs because you trained earlier but that just simply isn’t the case. More activity completed outside of your traditional “workout” hours seriously adds up! Unbeknown to some, the accumulation of the calories burnt of all these small calories can outweigh the calories you burnt during your workout class!
“According to Dr James Levine, the Mayo Clinic researcher who first described the phenomenon of NEAT, it can vary by up to 2,000 calories a day between two people of the same size.
That means that just by moving around and being on your feet – like we humans were designed to be – you could burn an additional 2,000 calories without even trying. And 2,000 is a hefty number.
For some of us, that’s well above our calorie allowance for a full day. It’s hard to believe, but simply moving around throughout the day can burn 2,000 calories, though your full hour of torture staring at the clock on the stationary bike burns only 300 to 400.”
Alright then… How Do I Increase My N.E.A.T?
For some, increasing their non exercise activity can be as simple as engaging in more activity during their spare time, however this can be hard for some people and often it is overlooked.
Simple methods of increasing your N.E.A.T Activity can be:
- Ditch the elevator – Take The Stairs
Instead of taking the elevator every time you can, take the stairs. You will be very surprised and pleased with how this change can quickly impact your day!
- Get A Standing Desk
Having a sedentary occupation is already a killer for your N.E.A.T Game, we know this. Simply getting a standing desk can dramatically reduce this. We weren’t designed to be sitting down, we were designed to be stood up and moving around and having a standing desk can make you feel more inclined to do so.
- Park Your Car Further Away From Things
Get in extra steps and extra calories burnt from increasing the amount of walking you do. Parking at the end of the car park at the supermarket can be a great way to do this – firstly you will be increasing your N.E.A.T Activity but also you guaranteed to get a parking space!
- Do Your Own Errands and Chores
It is easier than ever to have someone else do your jobs: online shopping brings your food to you so you don’t have to walk around the supermarket. Gardeners are easier than ever to hire to do your gardening work but these are all activities you could be doing that burn serious numbers of calories that you are missing out on!
I have previously written a blog on movement at work for more ideas on how to increase your movement specifically when at work! Check It Out!
You don’t have to now become obsessed with walking around, trying to achieve that infamous 10,000 step mark, but you can definitely take something away from today and incorporate it right away to increase your non exercise activity thermogenesis! Your fat loss journey cant run parallel to a sedentary lifestyle!