60% of adults in the UK are overweight or obese. The UK is the ‘fat man’ of Europe, there is more obese people in England than anywhere else on the continent. Scary fact, right? Slightly behind that unnerving figure are our Irish neighbours, followed by Spain, Portugal and Germany rounding off the top five.

So it’s safe to say there’s probably a large amount of people who caught a glimpse of themselves int the mirror and decided that it was time to go on a diet. There are hundreds of diets available for weight loss, whether it be simply buying and cooking better food and taking more time over it, joining a weight-loss club or tougher, stricter diets such as the Atkins diet, the Blood Type diet or the Caveman diet.

It’s all well and good dieting, but without going to the gym or regular exercise, all your time and effort in the kitchen can go completely to waste. A study in the US found reducing your calorie intake by 30% without exercising will likely lead to no weight loss at all, as the body deploys its natural compensatory mechanism, reducing physical activity in response to the reduction in calories.

Joining a sports team or club is also a popular option. Sports teams may offer more social benefits as well as a more active lifestyle, but a couple of pints here and there after a football or cricket match all add up. By joining a gym, you can target certain areas of your body and give yourself a more rounded workout as opposed to pure cardio during a football game or going for a run every now and again. There’s no point dieting and attempting to lose weight if you don’t then tone your muscles, which an 80 minute rugby game once a week or the odd hockey training session certainly won’t do.

The best, most effective and quickest way to lose weight and look better is to exercise and eat well. They go hand in hand; you wouldn’t go to the gym but maintain bad eating habits, so why improve your eating habits but not increase your frequency of exercise? Food and exercise complement each other providing you do it right, so as well as dropping the donuts and finding the fruit, make sure that a solid and regular gym workout is also part of your weight loss programme.