Sep 5, 2012
Hope you’re doing great!
I just got back from an unbelievable time visiting friends and family in NY and a conversation I had with a good friend sparked what would be today’s blog post.
He was mentioning that his chiropractor has this machine you lie down on, and after 10 minutes of just sitting there you’re supposed to have received the equivalent of 30 minutes of cardio. I’m still waiting on the name of this dohickey so please pardon my lack of details. True or not, you reeeaally have to hate exercising to try this thing out!
All I could think of when he was explaining this contraption was a modern day version of this machine:
Anyway that was my “wtf?!” moment of my trip..
So in thinking about dumb training concepts (ie. fat jiggling machine, shown above), I wanted to share with you 5 really smart training techniques you can use right away to see better fat loss results in a short order.
These first two items you’re going to find out are like acquiring road maps. Let’s say you’re about to go on a trip. You know where you want to go (ie. fat loss goal). You can get to your destination a number of ways (ie. dieting on your own, exercising), but to get there in the shortest time, exhausting the least amount of headaches…you invest in a gps system that tells you specifically how to get to your destination (ie. hiring a personal trainer)
1. Get A Metabolic Test
Whether you hire a nutritionist who writes up a customized meal plan, or you follow a popular diet or you just eat what you think is healthy, don’t you think knowing how much fuel your body uses in a day would be some killer insider information?
For about $100 and 15 minutes of your time, you can get a test done that will gauge how many calories your body burns at rest.
Why’s that significant?
Well, by knowing how many calories your body burns at rest, you can calculate how many calories you should be eating daily if you wanted to gain or lose weight. It’s a lot more accurate than plugging numbers into a formula and spitting out a one-size-fits-all calorie count.
Some health clubs have this technology or medi-spa’s even. Just google “metabolic test + [your town]”
2. Get A Conditioning Test
This one is even cooler than the metabolic test in that you get to find out exactly how your body uses up energy (calories).
For $150-$250 you hop on a treadmill wearing a mask like the guy in the picture below (cut-off, mesh tank-top is optional however) where for about 15 minutes you walk or run in each of your 5 heart rate zones. The results, then, will show you how your body in each of the zones uses up energy. Your body can utilize energy as all fat, all sugar, or combination.
I’ve had so many clients, in great shape mind-you, frustrated over the lack of results despite killing their bodies working out like crazy, only to find out that their body burns fat most optimally in lower heart rates!
Again, this is the 2nd part to acquiring insider information that 99% of people don’t do. No you don’t have this done, but for a small investment you can save yourself a ton of time and headache!
* There are a zillion different tests out there that can detect low nutrient levels, hormone deficiencies, etc but no need to go crazy getting them all done. These two will solve 95% of individuals out there!
3. Stop Working Out For 1 Week Every 12 Weeks
I hear more objections from clients and even other personal trainers about this strategy more than anything else I preach.
“I’ll lose all my progress!”
“I’ll get fat!”
“I’ll be so behind when I start up again!”
to which I respond..
“No you won’t”
“No you won’t”
“No you won’t”
Here’s the thing…
Your muscle composition and strength can hold it’s stature through a few months of inactivity before it starts to lose its grip, so you can throw that argument out..
In fact, the extra time off does the opposite in that a full recovery allows for better muscle performance when you start working out again. Most people are surprised to hear how strong they feel when they start back up!
4. The Way You LIKE To Train Might Not Be The BEST Way To Exercise
This one’s really important! We all have the same 600+ muscles in our body. How they’re constructed is in nobody’s control. However, you are in control of how you train them.
I wish I could tell you to do 5 sets of X exercise followed by 3 sets of Y exercise and (POOF!) you’re all set. Unfortunately that isn’t the case. If you’re going to trainer SMART you have to take into account 2 major factors.
1. How your body reacts to exercise
2. What you want your body to look like.
The first is the easier of the two because once you know how your body reacts towards exercise, you can adjust accordingly. For example, let’s say you’re very reactive towards resistance exercise and you put on muscle mass very easily…
If you’re somebody who favors easily put on muscle mass, congratulations your job is easy. But, in the example above, if you’d like to limit the muscle mass your body puts on easily…well, your job is a little tricky and you have to be savvy about which exercises or styles to do.
If you’ve ever worked out with me or in my fitness bootcamp, you know first hand that I don’t have a one-size-fits-all training style. Despite working with 4 to 14 people at a time, I’m aware of what specifically Jane’s goal is vs Joan’s goal so they might be doing two different things to accommodate their wishes.
The biggest misconception out there, that most girls unfortunately find out the hard way, is that additional squats, lunges, and deadlifts will help slim down their already muscular legs. When in reality, less is more for these girls…I’d recommend lower impact stuff like yoga and pilates.
So make sure the means (exercise style) lead you to your desired result(s).
5. ALWAYS Plan Ahead
Don’t ever get caught winging it! Very few of us have such a regimented schedule with no impromptu work meetings or anything to throw off our days. Lack of preparation is the single best way to guarantee you’ll never get the results you’re capable of…life will always get in the way.
The good news?
A lot of the stuff that “comes up” is seen well in advance. Enough advance that you can prepare your eating and workout schedule around that event. For some people, it’s as easy as making a day’s worth of meals every morning. I’ve had some clients go as extreme as preparing for the entire week ahead!
Now I’m not saying go cook a week’s worth of quinoa right now, but storing single servings of dry snacks like trail mix and bars in your car or office will go a long way in preventing long droughts of starvation where you’re so hungry you’ll eat at the first place you drive by…which inconveniently happens to be Taco Bell.
So there you have 5 really useful (I hope) strategies you can implement to shorten your trip to fat loss glory!
Here’s to seeing those results-