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The Myth About Sweating


Sweaty Israel After a Workout

A lot of people believe you can sweat your extra pounds away. They hop onto the elliptical for fifteen minutes dressed in clothes more appropriate for a run outside in Alaska in the middle of January. The belief is that the amount of sweat excreted correlates to the amount of weight shed. This statement is not completely false. According to Stew Smith, a former Navy SEAL and guest author for Maxim Fitness, it is possible to sweat away extra pounds. However, this weight is all water weight. The second you drink something after your workout, the weight is back on. This type of weight loss is a quick fix and not healthy.

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So then what is the point of sweating? Why would a person work out so much that he or she is completely drenched? The fact is that sweating means you are burning calories, which is the basis of weight loss- burning more calories than consuming. Calories are a measurement of energy; therefore, when calories are being spent it is felt through heat and when the body heats up, you sweat. Sweating is a good thing; it is a good gauge to see if you are pushing yourself. When you finish a workout, if you are not sweating, then it might be time to re-evaluate your workout. You should ask yourself if your workout is demanding enough. Should you increase weight, or lengthen the amount of time you spend at the gym? These are questions that only you can answer because only you know what your body can handle.

Sweating is important and a good gauge to see if you are pushing yourself hard enough during your workout. Just remember that you can’t really sweat away pounds because it is all water weight that will come right back. So go ahead keep eating right, jump on the treadmill and sweat like no other.

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About the Author

My name is Israel Lagares. I used to be the kind of guy that was always in shape, but over the last few years I've fallen off tremendously. This site is my final attempt to get back into shape. So far I've lost 70.4 lbs. Check out my weight loss chart, weight loss videos and progress pics. Follow my journey, those of others, and read our thoughts on various health topics. Share your thoughts, experience, and journey here on FMU.

Community Thoughts (41)

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  2. Strong OneNo Gravatar says:

    I would agree with you 95%. There are many that have a very different metabolism and cellular delivery. Raising there body temp and even performing peak exertion sometimes does not produce ‘sweat’ (just ask my wife – she NEVER sweats).
    I would caution the public to pay attention to their bodies. Don’t forget, in some cases (extreme), not sweating while exercising CAN be a sign of heat exhaustion.
    Just an FYI.
    I for one sweat like a fiend! I usually have to bring 2 shirts to the gym!!!
    Great thoughts!

  3. For most people (and there are some who just don’t sweat) sweating ensures that your burning fat. I think one of the reasons why swimming is NOT a good exercise for losing weight is because it’s too hard to work up a good sweat in water. However, just let me add that swimming is a fantastic exercise in every other respect. :)

    - Dave

  4. You are absolutely right. But it needs efforts to gain effective results.

  5. I agree, for me anyway sweating is a good indicator to see if I’m actually getting out of my comfort zone and starting to burn some calories.

    I sweat a crazy amount when I workout, Black t-shirts hide it really well though.

    I’ve seen UFC fighters sweat out 12 lbs in a day just to make the weigh in. That is nuts and so hard on your body.

  6. oliviaNo Gravatar says:

    sweating is a sign of good health! It cleans your body and concerning the skin, it kills its bacteria. Moreover it acts like an anti aging creme.
    So we should all sweat more!

  7. I hardly ever sweat when I do resistance training or running outdoors but get me on a treadmill and I just cannot stop. Don’t know what it is about the treadmill running but it just seems to get my sweat glands going.

  8. FreddyNo Gravatar says:

    Great Post, and your right! I once knew this guy he would come to the gym (at the time I was living in Miami) with a Skull cap on, a sweat shirt, with 3 t-shirt under it and shorts and sweat pants… Talk about hot. Needless to say this guy would sweat pools, but he never lost and noticible weight.

  9. JasonNo Gravatar says:

    Good post. I have found that during my ultra marathon races, that the ones where I sweat more I burned more calories and it was also harder to eat during the race which means my body was working harder to cool me than to digest food. So I have to agree with you. You burn more calories when your body has to cool you. Heat and burn go together eh :)

  10. CharlesNo Gravatar says:

    I have an extremly hard time sweating when I work out. Sometimes I’ll work out really hard for an hour and never sweat but feel like I’m going to pass out. I try to keep hydrated but it doesn’t help.

  11. Great Post, and your right! I once knew this guy he would come to the gym (at the time I was living in Miami) with a Skull cap on, a sweat shirt, with 3 t-shirt under it and shorts and sweat pants… Talk about hot. Needless to say this guy would sweat pools, but he never lost and noticible weight.

  12. Sweating is a sign of good health! It cleans your body and concerning the skin, it kills its bacteria. Moreover it acts like an anti aging creme.

  13. tidgeNo Gravatar says:

    Sweat is your body trying to cool itself down. So yeah, if you are busting your but you should be sweating.

    When you are swimming you don’t sweat as much (or maybe you just don’t notice it?) because you are already wet.

    • Simple physics at work here, as you are moving through the water your body is being cooled by the passing water and thus there is no need to sweat.

      Doing ‘static’ exercise such as on a treadmill and there is no airflow to cool your body down, therefore your body has to sweat to cool itself

  14. Wow very nice articole, I’ve learned a lot of things from your blog. Thanks.

  15. sweating is good in health also in our hygiene. it is the way of excreting waste, means that you will get clean from inside and outside.

  16. Not all metabolism of every one of us was the same that’s why not all of us hasn’t loose weight fast. Sweating is one of the best way to loose our weight fast.

    alexis scott

  17. Ahmet AtarNo Gravatar says:

    Not all metabolism of every one of us was the same that’s why not all of us hasn’t loose weight fast. Sweating is one of the best way to loose our weight fast.

  18. Rob D.No Gravatar says:

    Good article. I recall back in my youth sucking weight for kickboxing. To lose 5 pounds all I did was not drink water for about a day and a half. I would never recommend people try. Another point is when people see they gain a pound or two it might just be a little water weight. Likewise a one pound loss could simply be water loss. Good article.

  19. This is an excellent post, its good to clarify that sweating is losing the water weight that can easily be put back on with hydration, however the fact that you are sweating means you are actually working out and burning calories. So I guess its not about sweating the weight off, but working out effectively.

  20. rajkumarNo Gravatar says:

    I get lots of Sweat every day. I have reduced my weight.

  21. kamal SEONo Gravatar says:

    It is fantastic post for me thanks for ut

  22. zoophiliaNo Gravatar says:

    Great job, you can do it.

  23. emirieNo Gravatar says:

    the easiest way for me to workout and makes me sweat is dancing, this is my easiest exercise and is really enjoying

  24. JohnNo Gravatar says:

    Their many kind of works which make me sweat,but i most prefer to run.It’s healthy and nice for doing.Other kinds are dancing,training etc,but running is my FAVOURITE :)

  25. Yeah this is a old partial myth going around. You can lose weight by sweating but some is water weight.

  26. Steve ShawNo Gravatar says:

    I have a powerlifting friend who will all but sweat/spit himself into a 20 pound loss before weighin, and by the next morning he is almost back at full weight again.

  27. Nice article. Sweating cleans your body and helps you to lose weight. Thanks for informative article, Lagares.

  28. Kristal L. RosebrookNo Gravatar says:

    Very educational article. It has cleared up some myths for me.

    Kristal L. Rosebrook

  29. Have you guys tried Yoga? I thought Yoga was so simple till I started doing this Yoga Extreme workout. Man this thing is kicking my butt! It’s tough but the muscle definition does start showing really fast.

  30. RyanNo Gravatar says:

    I thought yoga was a joke,then i tried it…and now i regret what i said Big Time

  31. Since i started heavy weight training to add size for MMA, i noticed i sweat alot more. Partially this is due to the increased size, but i also attribute it to my CNS, i am shocking my body with heavy compound movements and thus my body is expelling more calories.

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