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Non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT) | The TRUE SECRET to weight loss

Weight loss occurs when your calorie intake is lower than the calories you burn in a day.

Most people try to lose weight by either exercising more or by eating less. Although these are valid options, there is another alternative!

While exercise is an important form of physical activity that can burn hundreds of calories at a time, other forms of physical activity, called non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT), can play a significant role in helping to maximize the total amount of calories burned in a single day.

Your NEAT is any activity that is largely subconscious or non planned exercise on our part. Standing, walking, fidgeting—they all contribute to NEAT.

Metabolic Pyramid ( art by Revive Stronger)

Variations in NEAT can explain differences in weight gain or loss. Research by Levine et.al. has found that Obese individuals appear to exhibit an innate tendency to be seated for 2.5 hours per day more than sedentary lean counterparts. 

Here are a few easy ways to increase and take advantage of NEAT.


Walking burns 400kcals per hour as opposed to sitting(50-80kcal).  Instead of driving to the gym , try walking there during your cutting phase.


Standing burns 80-110kcals per hour as opposed to sitting(50-80kcal). Consider getting a standing desk or choose to stand during your commute on the bus or train and burn more calories!


For the more serious individual, wearing a weighted vest throughout the day or on your walks are a great way to further burn more easy calories to reach your weight loss goals. 

“The wisdom of the weighted vest is that NEAT is powerful as hell. The weighted vest can be an awesome tool for many people. Try it.” ..

Dr. Mike Israetel - Founder of Renaissance Periodization (episode 170, 55 minutes)

For the average guy, a 30-minute walk burns about 125 calories, according to the Compendium of Physical Activities. But throw a weighted backpack on and take that exact same walk, and you burn about 325 calories, also according to the Compendium of Physical Activities.”

-Men’s Health


Let that sink in. Assuming you take five, 30-minute walks each week. If you begin walking with a weighted vest, you’ll burn 1,000 more calories a week.



The average person burns around 2500 calories per day. However, it is quite easy to bump this much higher without even stepping into the gym by just being more active throughout the day. This can be simple matters such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator, standing more often during your work breaks or wearing a weight vest throughout the day.

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