If you’re starting your journey with the keto diet, you might be wondering how it will affect your exercise plan.
Diet and exercise go hand-in-hand, whether you’re working on weight loss, building muscle, or improving your health and wellness. But since keto requires so much of our body and immune system, should you keep exercising the same way when switching over?
We set out to find the best keto exercise plan for beginners and came away with some stellar solutions for ketosis-friendly workouts.
Keto adaptation and exercise:
You might already know this, but we’ll cover it one more time for the folks in the back. The keto diet shifts your body from the mitochondrial process of glycolysis — using glucose from carbs as an energy source — to burning fatty acids in a process known as beta-oxidation. This leads to ketogenesis, the production and distribution of ketone bodies through the bloodstream and body tissues. These become your body’s new energy source.
When there’s a high level of ketone bodies present in your system, you’ve entered what’s known as ketosis. This shift happens over a period of two to three weeks as your body adjusts to your new primary fuel source. While following keto, you should only eat at most 50 grams of carbs per day.
This adaptation period is often difficult, due in no small part to the new rules and restrictions every diet comes with. The added challenge of keto comes from the physical changes in your system. Some people in the adaptation stage go through the “keto flu,” a colloquial term for common side effects of ketosis like mood shifts, trouble sleeping, and general fatigue. These symptoms are usually short-lived, and some people don’t experience them at all.
Regardless of whether you’re experiencing adaptation symptoms, this shift can be challenging on your body, so it’s important to build your keto exercise plan. That’s not to say you should wait until after adapting to work out.
We make keto seem easy.
The most important part of any keto diet is sticking with it! Don’t let cravings get the best of you, and keep track of those carbs.
Farm to Fit makes keeping keto a no-brainer, with keto-balanced meals delivered to your doorstep.
How ketosis benefits your workout:
Studies have shown that ketosis can help athletes burn fat at twice or three times the rate of those on a more traditional high carb diet. There’s also evidence that keto can increase endurance and recovery speed, even in those who are still overweight.
Some of these studies rely on ketone salt supplements, and almost all focus on participants who have already passed through the adaptation phase. So what about when you’re in the middle of adapting? Well, exercising during those initial couple of weeks can bring its own amazing benefits, even combating some of the effects of “keto flu.”
Good exercise habits, regardless of diet, help improve your blood pressure, oxygen levels, fat-burning processes, and even mood. Keeping your body active can relieve some of the irritability, fatigue, or inflammation common to the early stages of keto. Plus, it’s a great opportunity to replace cravings for carbs or sugar with a healthy, fun habit like hiking!
Before you start exercising in ketosis:
If you’re starting the keto diet and are ready for an adaptation workout plan, the key thing to remember is to take a step back. High-intensity cardio, heavy weight lifting, or any exercises your body isn’t already used to may bring you to quick exhaustion. That’s not good for your body or your motivation.
Experts recommend doing exercises that you’re already familiar and comfortable with, just at low-intensity levels. That means sticking to low-resistance cardio or high-rep low-weight strength training.
Exercises like walking, hiking, swimming, or cycling are perfect for getting your heart rate up without exceeding a comfortable low-intensity rate of 40-50%. Low-weight lifting gives you that sustained calorie burn while building muscle mass without pushing your body too far. Don’t forget isometric and flexibility exercises like yoga, bodyweight holds, or gymnastics to keep your body limber and your mind at rest.
Picking your keto exercise plan:
When picking an exercise routine that’s right for the outset of your keto quest, don’t forget the prep work. Make sure your targeted diet has plenty of healthy fats and proteins, or your body won’t have anything to work with. You should always stretch before a workout, but it’s essential while going through the early stages of ketosis since your muscles will still be adjusting.
Most important, don’t overdo it. Stick to low-intensity exercise for the first few weeks, building or reducing your methods based on how your body feels. Keto is about pushing your body’s limits, so don’t push too far by trying to “speed up” weight loss.
Farm to Fit 2021
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Strengthen your muscles and build endurance without straining yourself. We put together these 5 isometric exercises for full-body results.