Losing weight is no easy feat, but maintaining weight loss can be just as challenging. A new study from the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus may have uncovered the secret to keeping those pounds off: exercise.

The findings aren’t exactly shocking or revolutionary, but they do give some insight into what actually works to keep the pounds off.

The study, which was published in the March issue of Obesity, looked at successful weight-loss maintainers, or those who maintained a reduced body weight of 30 pounds or more for over a year.

Those who were successful at maintaining their weight loss relied on physical activity – not chronic restriction of calories – to keep off the pounds.

What’s interesting about this study is that it contradicts the popular belief that you can’t outrun your diet.

The successful weight-loss maintainers actually consumed significantly more calories than those who were of a normal weight. In fact, their calorie consumption was more in line with those who were overweight or obese.

So, how did they manage to maintain their weight loss if they’re essentially going back to their old eating habits?

The study found that the weight-loss maintainers were burning more calories than both the normal weight individuals and those who were overweight/obese.

The weight-loss maintainers were managing 12,000 steps per day compared to 9,000 steps by normal weight participants and 6,500 steps for overweight/obese individuals.

The moral of the story? Keep moving! Don’t stop exercising because you’ve reached your weight loss goal. Use this study as motivation to keep your routine going.

Rene Emery
Rene Emery

Rene is a creative, little gnome. When she’s not diving deep into research on health and wellness, she’s spending here time out in nature, growing her homestead, photographing wildlife, doing yoga or enjoying a zen (depending on the day) moment with her fur babies. And on top of all of that, she’s a professional writer by day, helping businesses around the world grow.