New research carried out by diet firm Forza Supplements has revealed a quarter of gym users gain weight when they start exercising due to the treats they consume post-workout. The study quizzed 1,000 gym goers on their diet habits and found that 39% burn as little as 300 calories per visit, making them more susceptible to weight gain if they have a calorific snack as a post-exercise treat.
The poll found that regular gym sessions gave dieters a feeling of complacency and this made it more difficult to stick to their recommended daily calorie intake. 26% said they had actually put on weight after starting regular exercise, while 49% said their weight had stayed the same. Just 27% said they had lost weight.
On average, those surveyed go to the gym between three and four times per week and exercise for between 40 minutes to an hour each time. Four out of ten users burn between 300 and 500 calories in a session, a quarter manage 200 to 300 calories, 10% just 100 to 200 calories and 4% burn less than 100 calories.
More than a third allows themselves a treat after a gym workout. Most typically the treat of choice is either a chocolate bar such as a Kit Kat at 233 calories (for a four finger bar) or a glass of wine at 190 calories.
Another reason why going to the gym can cause weight gain is that regular exercisers have bigger appetites than people that do not keep fit. 53% said their exercise sessions had substantially boosted their appetite.
Many of those polled also admitted they exercise regularly ahead of a night’s partying. Almost half of the 1,000 surveyed would work out prior to a big night out to compensate for the calories they would consume later.
42% of respondents also felt that by exercising regularly, they had earned the right to deviate from their controlled diet plans.
Many gym goers underestimate the level of exercise they need to do to shift fat. To lose 1kg of body fat, you need to burn about 8,000 calories – that is around 80 miles of running to cover just 1kg in weight
Forza Supplements managing director, Lee Smith, said the survey results showed that many dieters struggle to lose weight despite exercising regularly. Battling the bulge is the toughest thing many of us do. Lots of people go to the gym because they know they have no control over their eating habits. They figure they are going to pig out anyway so they might as well do their best to limit the damage. “Many gym goers underestimate the level of exercise they need to do to shift fat. To lose 1kg of body fat, you need to burn about 8,000 calories – that is around 80 miles of running to cover just 1kg in weight,” added Lee.
According to Market Research World, gym goers are also 18% more likely to eat chocolate. If you’re prone to eating a Mars Bar before you start working out, here’s what you’ll need to do to burn it off: three-mile treadmill run, 40 minute swim or 35 minutes of weight training. Thanks to personal trainer Laura Williams for her Mars Bar calorie burning insight.