Sometimes dieters have thoughts like, “I’ve exercised enough; it’s okay to eat extra.” It’s so critical to separate exercise from eating for so many reasons, including:

1. Losing weight is so much more about what you eat and don’t eat, and so much less about what you do in the gym. Many people vastly overestimate the number of calories they burn while exercising and then eat too much to lose weight.

2. When eating and exercise are linked, then eating becomes the “reward” for exercising, and, even worse, exercise can become the “punishment” for eating. Exercise is something you do for your health and your mental health, not as a punishment for eating. When exercise is punishment, it becomes hugely unenjoyable and turns a really great thing into a really terrible thing.