Today I want to go over an easily overlooked method to help you lose weight. NEAT activity.
What is NEAT activity?
NEAT activity stands for Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis. It is the energy expended for any non formal exercise or movement. This includes activities like your daily step count, taking the stairs more than the lift. It can also include the energy expended from cleaning your house, doing yard work etc.
How it helps you to lose weight
NEAT activity helps you to lose weight by requiring more energy that your body has to provide. Let’s say your activity level is sedentary. You then increase your activity so that you are now in the lightly active range. This means your body now needs more calories because your activity level requires the extra calories for that increase in activity. By eating a little more and saving the remaining calories it helps you build a bigger calorie deficit which aids in weight loss.
How to start increasing your NEAT activity
When I first started increasing NEAT activity I looked toward my daily step count. In the beginning I was only getting around 250 steps a day as I worked from home and did not have much incentive to increase that. After researching online I found slowly increasing my daily steps would make me benefit from increased NEAT activity. I set myself weekly targets to increase my daily step count. In week 1 I set the goal to 500 steps a day. Week 2 1000 steps a day. And then each week after that I would increase it by 1000 steps until 8000 steps which I felt like was a good place to be in.
I also increased my activity by standing more at my desk. I got a simple desk riser which allowed me to change from sitting to standing very easily. I also got up to move around more frequently which also gave my eyes a break from the computer screen.
I would recommend that when you start out you look at areas that you already do in terms of NEAT activity so that you could slowly increase them. For example if you already get 3000 steps a day it would be easier for you to increase your step count then to say do another activity e.g. yard work. You can increase yard work if you want to but I found that increasing habits I was already doing helped me when starting out.
I hope you found this article on NEAT activity interesting and informative. The main takeaway here is that NEAT activity is an easily overlooked method in aiding weight loss and can be increased relatively easy and by setting good habits you can continue these over the long term. If you have any questions feel free to reach out to me here.