Can Karate Help You Lose Weight? Yes and no.
Karate can absolutely help you lose weight, but it’s by no means the only factor. Regular karate exercises, as well as making other changes in your lifestyle, will help you achieve the results you are looking for.
Let’s talk about math first, and then I’ll give you a summary of what will actually help you lose that weight and keep it forever.
Calories in, calories out?
The formula seems simple: to lose weight, you need to burn more calories than you consume. So you put the numbers into a nutritional calculator like the one I’m showing in this video:
And you do all the things that should lead to weight loss, but the number on that scale still doesn’t move.
Calculators like this can be great, but you have to realize that this is just a starting point. There are many variables that relate to how many calories you actually absorb and how many you burn, so you can’t just rely on formulas and calculators like this.
Let’s take a look at your karate workouts. The number of calories you burn during karate will vary depending on your weight, body composition, your metabolism, what you actually do (such as sparring vs kata), how hard you work, how much you rest during this exercise, how long you exercise in each session, how many lessons per week, etc.
Then there are other aspects of calorie expenditure, such as your resting metabolism, whether you have recently followed a strict diet, your level of activity during the day and how much you sleep.
Then there are the calories. And it depends on how much food you actually eat, how processed the food you eat is, what types of food are present in the food, even the type of bacteria in your gut can be affected. .
How you can really lose weight
So, as you can see above, this simple formula turns out to be not that simple. Here are the steps you can take to lose weight and keep it forever:
# 1 – Exercise at least 5 hours a week.
People who lose weight and maintain weight do so because they put in repetition. Practice karate or a combination of karate and other workouts for at least five hours each week. During karate training, push hard, but not hard enough to injure yourself. Take the time to recover, and during the harder workouts, take rest days or lighter workouts.
# 2 – Incorporate a non-exercise activity.
The name for this is NEAT, or thermogenesis non-exercise. This represents all the energy you burn during the day during activities other than sleep, food or scheduled exercise. It turns out that the amount of calories you burn during your non-workout activities is often more than what you burn during one workout.
Think about it. Let’s say you sleep 8 hours a night, then you’re awake 16 hours a day. And from that day you go to the dojo for one hour. 15 hours left. Think of ways you can move more to burn more calories in those 15 hours.
Watch this video on intermittent workouts and find out how you can add small doses of amazing karate during the day to speed up your metabolism and burn more calories overall:
# 3 – Don’t go on extreme diets.
When you drastically reduce calories to lose weight, your body has no idea it’s intentional. Your body actually thinks you’re starving and is trying to save energy by slowing down your metabolism.
Fashion diets don’t work. Watch this video to see if there is an ideal diet for karate:
# 4 – Eat whole and unprocessed foods at regular intervals and listen for signs of hunger and fullness in your body.
When you eat processed foods vs. Whole, unprocessed foods, your body actually absorbs more calories from unprocessed foods. Basically, the more food is processed, the less work your body has to do to break it down, spend it to gain access to those calories.
When eating, eat slowly and carefully. To learn more, you can watch this video:
And pay attention to the level of your fullness. To lose weight, eat until you are about 80% saturated.
You can learn more about this in this video here:
If you need more help with diet, check out my healthy eating course.
Here is a video with more information about it:
# 5 – Eat plenty of high quality protein.
Protein satisfies well and your body’s metabolism really speeds up when you eat a high-protein meal, so you burn a lot more calories.
Watch this video to find out how much protein you really need:
#6 – Drink plenty of water.
Thirst can often be disguised as hunger, and drinking more water can help reduce your appetite.
Watch this video to find out how much water you really need:
# 7 – Sleep 7-9 hours a night.
Lack of sleep can actually reduce the number of calories burned. For example, one lousy night of sleep can actually reduce your calorie expenditure by an incredible 5-20%. And over time, chronic sleep deprivation has a negative effect on hormones that regulate fullness and appetite.
The final result? You eat more. Watch this video to learn more about sleep and weight management:
# 8 – Stay in line with your habits.
Going to the dojo only once a month just won’t disappoint. You must be consistent to make progress. Make a schedule and stick to it.
Karate will not help you lose weight and maintain it if your lifestyle sucks or if you just return to old habits once you reach your weight loss goals. Do all the things I mentioned and do it consistently. This will give you the results you are looking for.
Which of the above tips could you work on now to achieve your weight loss goals?
Check out some of my articles at nutrition and health:
Here are some great books to help you improve your habits, concentration and mental play: