The Slimming World plan does not require its members to exercise to lose weight. Good weight loss results can be achieved by diligently sticking to the plan, acknowledging lapses , putting them behind you and getting right back on the wagon. However, there is no doubt that exercise has its benefits. Body Magic is simply Slimming World’s way of encouraging members to lead more active lives. The term refers to the combination of food optimising and moderate activity, which together, accelerate weight loss. No two people are the same, but adding Body magic to the Slimming World regime could add between 15 and 25 lbs to annual weight loss.
Although weight loss is the ultimate aim of being on Slimming World, moderate exercise also has a host of excellent health benefits. It helps stimulate the metabolism, reduces the risk of circulatory problems and heart disease, strengthens the muscles, bones and joints, and reduces the risk of diabetes and high blood pressure. Those lucky enough to lose a great deal of weight can also use exercise to tone their body and help reduce the side-effect of saggy skin. There are four levels of Body Magic achievement with Slimming World – bronze, silver, gold and platinum. The levels are self-regulated. The member simply keeps a log of their activity and submits it to their consultant, and depending on the activity level achieved, a sticker of the relevant colour will be awarded in group.
To get bronze, a member has to undertake physical activity for at least 45 minutes a week, over at least three days, and maintained over four weeks. Any physical activity that lasts more than five minutes counts toward this target. For silver, this is increased to 90 minutes over the week, again, over at least three days and maintained for four weeks. Only physical activity over 15 minutes at a time will count. Gold is achieved when a member hits 150 minutes a week, over at least five days, and maintained for eight weeks. The Platinum life-long award is given for members who manage the gold standard at least twice.
The secret to Body Magic is to incorporate normal physical activity into the everyday routine. There is no special need to join a gym or health club. Simple things, such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator, getting off a stop early and walking, or taking the dog for a walk all count toward the target. Even things such playing Wii Sports, doing Wii Fit, or popping out to the shops at lunchtime will work.
The key is regular, moderate physical activity, instead of one big session once or twice a week, and, much like the Slimming World plan, members have to create a routine that works for them, keeps them motivated, and is sustainable over the long term. Building regular exercise into the plan can accelerate weight loss, and, in that sense, it is optional. However, to be able to maintain weigh-loss once target is achieved, adding moderate exercise – essentially Body magic – to the daily routine makes staying at target that much easier.