There’s a lot more to toning up than just heaving those free weights, being a cardio animal, and pushing yourself to the limit. You’ve got to know specifically what to focus on, what to adjust, and what to plan for.
Avoid these biggest mistakes and watch your body tone up, slim down and thank you later:
1. Not Focusing On Recovery
In trying to tone up, your focus should be on recovery. It’s the last, most important step in the entire process of your fitness regime. Think of it as a business.
What do you think is the most important – product creation, financial planning, or marketing and selling? In business, nothing ever happens until a sale is made.
Nothing also ever happens until your body has time to repair. I don’t how much you’ve bench pressed, how long you worked your cardio or how many group fitness classes you did today. It doesn’t matter. What matters first and foremost is how you’ll be able to recover afterwards.
So if you’re trying to be macho doing 40+ sets for 5 times a week while cross-training in other sports, good luck. The guy or gal who just spends 30 minutes doing a complete workout, 3 times a week will earn my respect a lot more.
You can train all you want. But can you recover from all of that?
2. Not Adjusting Your Diet
I think for most people, sleep is a given constant – 7 to 8 hours a day. Count yourself lucky if you can afford even this basic requirement.
When it comes to diet however, yours could look drastically different from the person next to you. That’s because you need to adjust your food intake to the level of activity you’ve done, you’re doing, and going to do in the next couple of hours. And that’s a lot to take into consideration.
The ones who constantly adjust their diet experience the biggest gains compared to those who eat as constantly as they work out. Don’t get me wrong. You need to be consistent with your protein, carb, and fat intake. But it’s their proportion you need to scale.
In general, mornings are best for high-carb intake while evenings are better for high-protein meals.
3. Not Planning Your Training
If you think your nutrition is the only the thing you need to vary, you’re in for a surprise. Your workouts need to be re-cycled as well.
The good news is that it doesn’t have to be as immediate and day-to-day as your diet. Changing your training routines usually happen every 6-12 weeks. Most people still don’t get the reason for this. For them, if a program works great, why change it at all? That’s very logical. However, your mind and body is smarter than that. Once you’ve adjusted well to the exercises, weights, and repetitions you impose on yourself, the program slowly becomes more and more ineffective.
Think about the first time you ever drank coffee. The ‘buzz’ from that instant brew will always be the most intense. Same with your workouts. So to keep your body (and mind) challenged and growing, adjust your workouts – even if it means simply re-ordering your exercises.
Want more great ideas and ways to improve how you look and feel? Stop in and meet with a member of our fitness team, they would be glad to help you develop a specific plan to meet your goals!
Fitness for Baby Boomers
Men and women need to be aware of the importance of the five phases of a successful cardiovascular exercise session. We have seen many people start an exercise program with great intentions and then suddenly quit. Usually, they quit because of pain and injury. Sometimes, they quit because they don’t see any results.
When people over 50 exercise in a proper way, you burn calories and increase fitness. But when you exercise in an improper way, you risk injuries. You risk burning away the protein stored in your muscles and vital organs and the carbohydrates (sugar) which you need to supply nourishment to your nervous system and brain. But what is proper exercise? Of the course the best thing to do is to speak with a member of our professional staff to assist you in developing a program that fits your needs and goals. However, we can share with you five basic steps to be followed at each exercise session. These basic parameters have proven to give optimal results and minimize the chance of injury during exercise.
1. WARM UP
Function: To prepare and “‘alert” our body for the upcoming physical activity. A warm up at the beginning of an exercise session is one of the best ways to prevent pain and injury. Despite its importance, this step is often ignored by exercisers – even experienced athletes.
How To: For a proper warm up, simply perform the exercise at a slow pace for about 5 minutes (or until your pulse count is above 100 beats per minute-bpm). For example, start your brisk walk with a slow 5 minute stroll or be at your aerobics class at the beginning of the session (a good instructor will always start the class with a warm up).
2. PRE-EXERCISE STRETCH
Function: Relaxes and lengthens our muscles.
How To: Once we have warmed up our body (our pulse count is over 100 bpm), it is time to stretch the muscles we are about to use. The leg stretches and upper body Static Stretches, relax the muscles that are used for walking a track or riding a bicycle. Relaxed muscles tend to improve our efficiency and our performance as well as reducing our risk of injury.
Function: To improve cardiovascular fitness and/or burn body fat.
How to: An aerobic activity such as walking, biking, swimming and Walkaerobics should increase our pulse count to 40% – 60% of our maximum heart rate. The activity should be done for 12 – 30 minutes, not more than 60 minutes per session. The Heart Rate Chart based on your resting heart rate and age determines your exercise heart rate.
4. COOL DOWN
Function: To gradually return to resting state.
If we stop short after exercising, it takes time for our body to regain homeostasis. Meanwhile, our heart is still pumping at an accelerated pace and blood pools in our extremities. We get swollen fingers and feet. This causes dizziness because no blood, and therefore no oxygen, is getting to our brain.
How To: The cool down is the same as the warm up, but in reverse. Just do the exercise or previous activity at a slow, temperate pace for about 5 minutes or until your heart rate has gone down below 100 bpm.
5. POST-EXERCISE STRETCH
Function: Prevents soreness and increases flexibility.
How To: This is the optimal time to static stretch. Your body is warm and your blood is pumping at a moderate pace so you can stretch further without causing an injury. Besides increasing your flexibility, stretching at this point squeezes out the excess waste products that have built up in your muscles during exercise. If you do not stretch at this time, the waste buildup causes muscle soreness and fatigue.
These five phases of an cardio exercise session are condensed from proven scientific studies and the American College of Sports Medicine Guidelines ACSM. When followed at each workout they will give optimal results and minimize the chance of injury during exercise.
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Every Monday Ben will be doing a fitness Q & A on Facebook regarding certain gym topics often asked about by gym members.
If you would like any more information on the weekly topic come and find Ben at the club Friday from 16:00pm.
This weeks topic is: Cardio V Free Weights.
Question: What is more beneficial for fat loss… cardio or free weights?
Answer: The answer is both ladies and gentlemen. The key to greater results for FAT LOSS is skeletal muscle. Yes thats right ladies, get your pump on. More skeletal muscle demands more energy, therefore more calories. So if you have that extra few pounds of lean muscle tissue you are going to be burning more calories. Weight training will also increase your bone density and as we get older this decreases, especially for females. I can hear the voice of the ladies saying “i don’t want to get big and bulky” Well that will not be the case. Females do not have the male testosterone hormone which is responsible for big muscle gains. So as long as you do the correct training you will be fine. As for your cardio, its best to leave for after your weight training, using short intervals as your weapon of choice. Using a maximum of 20 sec bursts at 100% effort and min rest. This method has been scientifically been proven to raise your metabolic rate. Using cardio at a slow steady state and not using weights will cause your body to enter a catabolic stage, yes you will lose weight but you will start to eat into your muscle too. SO PEOPLE…. LETS HIT THE BENCH…….
Training methods for FAT LOSS (not weight loss)
- Big muscle groups used each session in a circuit format
- Limited rest period
- Compound moves using multiple joints, for example, squat with a shoulder press
- REP range of 10 – 12
Example workout: (male and female)
Squat with shoulder press (Bar)
Cable rows with squat
Squat with up right row and calf raise
Repeat the above circuit for 2- 3 rounds to begin with. There should be no rest between each exercise and a maximuim of 60 sec rest after each round.
This sort of workout helps raise your bodies metabolic rate and is great at shedding FAT. Well i hope you have found this blog interesting and any questions ill see you Friday from 4 PM. If not look out for next weeks BLOG.
Hour of Power SuperClass this Wednesday 23rd October 6:30pm – 7:30pm with Silva and Debbie!
Taking place at Fairlands Primary School.
40 places already taken, please reply or contact Tania @ reception to book your place – Friends also welcome!
THIS SUPER CLASS IS FREE!