In the pursuit of holistic well-being, the integration of multifunctional exercises has gained prominence. Beyond the conventional approach to fitness, these exercises offer a dual benefit by simultaneously promoting efficient digestion and aiding in weight loss. Some surprising multifunctional exercises not only assist in calorie burning but also foster improved gastrointestinal function.
We spoke with Andrew White, certified personal trainer and the co-founder of garagegympro.com, to learn about a few 3-in-1 exercises that can aid in both weight management and digestive health. White revealed that brisk walking or light jogging, yoga twists, and cycling are some of the best options.
Brisk Walking or Light Jogging
Engaging in brisk walking or light jogging presents a simple yet effective approach to promoting both weight loss and digestive well-being. These low-impact exercises elevate heart rate and boost metabolism, facilitating the burning of calories and aiding in weight loss efforts. Simultaneously, the rhythmic movement associated with brisk walking or light jogging stimulates the digestive system, enhancing its efficiency.
"Brisk walking or light jogging is excellent for burning calories and improving cardiovascular health. This type of aerobic exercise increases heart rate and metabolism, which are key components for weight loss," White says. As for digestion, he notes that "these activities stimulate the intestines and can help speed up the time it takes food to move through the gastrointestinal tract, thereby improving digestion and reducing bloating."
He recommends to "aim for about 30 minutes per day to achieve the best balance of cardiovascular and digestive benefits."
These gentle yet powerful poses involve twisting the torso, which not only engages core muscles but also stimulates the organs involved in digestion. The twisting motion aids in promoting better circulation; from a weight loss perspective, regular practice of yoga twists can contribute to a toned midsection and improved metabolism.
"Yoga, especially poses that involve twisting, can be effective for weight loss. These poses help improve flexibility and tone the abdominal muscles. Twists are particularly good for digestion. They massage the abdominal organs, increase blood flow to the digestive tract, and aid in the process of digestion by physically compressing and stimulating these organs," White states.
He further adds that devoting 15-30 minutes daily to practicing yoga twists can yield significant benefits.
Cycling emerges as an enjoyable and effective exercise that brings dual benefits to weight loss and digestion. The rhythmic pedaling not only burns calories, aiding in weight management, but also enhances cardiovascular health. This aerobic activity stimulates the digestive system, promoting efficient digestion and reducing the likelihood of bloating or constipation.
White elaborates further and says "stationary or outdoor cycling is a fantastic low-impact cardio exercise for burning calories. It's especially good for those looking for a joint-friendly way to lose weight. Cycling helps improve the rate at which food moves through the digestive tract and can reduce feelings of bloating or sluggishness after eating. It also enhances overall gut motility."
He suggests that "a 30-45 minute cycling session, either daily or several times a week, can be very effective."