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To Burn or Not to Burn
To Burn or Not to Burn, Fat is the Question
(Brown Books Publishing Group)

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Exercise, Lose Weight & Become Healthier -- My New Year's Resolution

By Dr. Len Lopez
Nutrition and fitness expert

CBN.comNow that the New Year is upon us and all our resolutions are at the forefront lets think about how our metabolism is functioning in accordance to how He designed it.  This is important because many of the marketing hype out there is geared towards revving up your metabolism – which doesn’t mean it is triggering it to burn calories from stored body fat.

Not that everyone is trying to lose weight and become healthier, but if that is you here are a few things you need to consider so you don’t waste your precious time and energy.

  1. Losing weight isn’t a simple math equation!  The good Lord didn’t design your body or allows your body composition to be based solely on burning more calories than you consume. If He die there wouldn’t be so many people, struggling with their weight even though they exercise and watch what they eat. In order to achieve long lasting weight loss you need to make sure your metabolism is burning calories from stored body fat.  Just because you burned 300 extra calories from working out – doesn’t mean you burned stored body fat. I talk about this in “To Burn or Not to Burn – Fat is the Question”    
  1. Your body burns calories by breaking down carbohydrates, proteins or fats.  Those are the only three choices you have available. People who struggle with fatigue, cravings, irritability, hormonal imbalances and the inability to lose weight or add lean muscle are typically burning calories from the breakdown of carbohydrates and proteins (lean muscle). You’ll never drop those extra inches if you aren’t burning calories from the breakdown of fats.

FYI…He designed your metabolism so that it would prefer to burn fats more readily than carbohydrates, which is why you generate more than two-and-a half times more energy when you burn fats in comparison to carbs and proteins.  This is one of the biggest reasons why fatigue and weight gain always seem to go together!

Test your Metabolism and see if it is working for you or against you.

  1. You should be in your ‘fat-burning’ zone 23 hours out of the day.  The proverbial ‘fat-burning’ zone is best known with regards to aerobic exercise.  However, it is something you want happening for the 23 hours of the day you aren’t working out.  

If you are reading this now – you should be in your fat burning zone, but because of skipping meals, the wrong diet, the wrong workout program, too much stress and cortisol (this is a big one), along with whatever health issues you are dealing with could be throwing off your metabolism and triggering your body to burn carbs and lean muscle instead of fats.

  1. Approximately 60-75 percent of your weight lose will come as a result of your diet.  Exercise is important for overall good health, but only about 15-20 percent of your results come from your actual workout.  About 15-20 percent of your results come from your ability to Rest and Recover. The main point is, don’t make the same mistake I did when I was younger, which was placing more emphasis on my workout than my diet.  It’s about dieting and exercising smarter – not harder and longer.
  1. Diets don’t work!  A good diet is a dieting plan that you can follow for a long time – not something you need to mentally gear up for. Fad diets may help you lose weight with promises of 20 pounds in 20 days, but a majority of the weight loss comes from burning lean muscle – Not Stored Body fats.

The game is to burn fat, not muscle. Muscle weighs more than fat and when you start burning lean muscle you’re going to lose weight along with whatever muscle tone you created for yourself. This is really important, because burning lean muscle instead of stored body fat is how we get that ugly looking cellulite we don’t like. 

These are only a few of the things you need to think about as you design your health and fitness program.  I’ll talk more about exercise and what you want to achieve with a good workout next time, along with how to avoid the most common workout mistakes.  But right now you need to check your metabolism and make sure it is functioning the way He designed it. Otherwise you could end up wasting a lot of your hard earned time, energy and money.

Good luck with the New Year!  I hope you work your physical muscles as well as you train your spiritual muscles, because your body is your temple.  Give it the respect it deserves.

Dr. Len LopezDr. Len Lopez is a nutrition and fitness expert and creator of the Work Horse Fitness Trainer.  His background in natural medicine and strength training gives him that special insight to help those who are struggling to bring both ‘health’ and ‘fitness’ together.  You can learn more or get a Second Opinion at

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