Posted by: Christelle | 2008-11-19

Energy and exercise for adult male

Dear Doc,

I am trying to help my boyfriend become more healthy (at his request!), but am not familiar with the energy requirements or exercise which would suit him. He is 1.85 m tall and weighs 106 kg. He has been swimming 2 times a week and doing weight training 1/2 times a week for the last 2 months or so, but has only lost about 2 kg. I' m not sure what an adult male of his size should eat daily in order to obtain a healthy weight loss- I don' t want his metabolism to slow down for lack of sufficient food (though I suspect a few years of bad eating habits has brought it to a grinding halt anyway!).

What would an average day' s food be, and what exercises should he focus on?

Your advice would be much appreciated!

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageFitnessDoc

Hi Christelle

My advice for the diet is to see a dietician. I know that sounds like passing the buck, but there is no formula answer for this, and the best thing you can do for him is to have him see a dietician, to find out his habits, his preferences and his needs. That will go a long way to sorting this whole thing out. You're right about the lack of food being as much a problem as too much, and so this balance is very important.

In terms of the exercise, I can give some pointers. I think he's on the right track. Iw ouldn't worry too much about the 2kg weight loss - that's not so bad, considering that he's really starting out and also that he could expect to gain some muscle as a result of training. My advice is that he needs to look at adding another day of cardio trainin g- the swimming session counts, so that he is doing at least 4 days a week of training. Three is fine, but a fourth day makes a big difference.

So my advice is another day of swimming per week, and then perhaps in the new year, he can look at taking up a sport like walking, jogging or cycling. You could even join him. That adds the variety and it's also a weight bearing activity (jogging would be especially good, or even walking), which is good for bones and joint strength. So I think keep this going for the next month, get through the festive season unscathed, and then look at some changes after that.

Good luck

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