Friday, May 6, 2016

What Workout Is Best For Me? #1

I am beginning a three-part series to help you determine how much exercise you really need. News headlines tout the seven-minute workout. Another study stated we need to exercise one hour a day to prevent premature death. The truth is, what's best depends largely on your goals and how hard you are willing to push yourself. Use this three week guide to tweak your routine to match your goals.

YOUR GOAL: LOSE WEIGHT

YOU NEED: HIGH INTENSITY 3X WEEK + STRENGTH TRAINING 1X WEEK

Research has shown that High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) will trim more flab than steady state cardio and save you time. Alternating short periods of exercise at your highest effort with an easy pace allows you to log a 20-minute workout and net roughly the same calorie burn as a 30-45 minute workout at a steady pace. You get a boost during the intervals and also during the rest periods, because your body uses the extra energy to return to normal. Plus you get a nice 10% bonus after-burn.


During an interval, you run on fast-acting glycogen, or carbs, but recoveries are fueled by fat. Don't skimp on the recovery time. Run, cycle, swim - the undulating pattern matters more than the activity you are doing.

One of your HIIT sessions should focus on body-weight moves (burpees, squats, push-ups) to build muscle as well. Those who combined cardio and strength training lost more fat than those who did only cardio. Resistance training protects and builds the lean muscle which is your body's calorie burning furnace.

Add another day of weight training, making sure to hit all the major muscle groups and use weights heavy enough so you're spent with the last rep.

The key to weight loss is consistency.  On alternate days, walk, bike, play tennis. Do something active.

NEXT WEEK'S GOAL: LOOK MORE TONED

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