So that’s it then, Christmas is over and the New year is upon us once again. Many people over indulged, as did I, and have taken to the gyms with a vengeance in an attempt to get rid of the extra pounds that accumulated around their midriffs. Fantastic! By the end of March, everyone will be in shape, tight, toned, lean and healthy ready for the ensuing summer, if we get one. Right? Actually, this couldn’t be further from the truth.
Would it be fair to say that apart from the obvious health benefits from exercising, the vast majority of us want to look slim? We want a flat stomach and a small bum and we want to fit into those skinny jeans or size 8-10 dress. Guys, that obviously doesn’t apply to you but you catch my drift. We live in a society where slim is beautiful. Many may say this is unfair and possibly it is but that’s the way it is so for now we have to go with it.
As I look around the gym, I see so many people working very hard on various machines, lots of time, effort and commitment going into these training sessions but are they producing the desired results? The answer is clearly no. Many of my clients in the gym have come to me having been regularly coming to the gym for maybe a year or more, 3-4 times per week, possibly more and still not getting results. It must be so frustrating!
I have lost count the amount of times I hear “I have tried everything, i just cant lose weight” The gym itself doesn’t help. Its set up to make the company lots of money. The majority of the equipment is cardio based and studio based classes which unfortunately, most females are drawn to. Why? because cardio burn fats and will tone their muscles, or so the media will have you believe. Countless celebrities endorsing their new Aerobics DVD and how you, the consumer at home can look like them in 6 weeks, all from the comfort of your home. Pippa middleton has just launched her “Perfect bum” pilates DVD. I am actually a fan of both Pilates and Pippa’s bum, more so Pippa’s bum to be fair but if the British public think that Pilates will give them a tight behind like Miss Middleton then they are in for a shock. It is so misleading the information that we are fed daily in our lives when it comes to getting in shape. It’s actually criminal some of the stuff they print in magazine and newspapers.
But his post isn’t going to be negative though. Oh no. This post will give you, finally, for once and for all, the definitive guide to achieving the best results from the gym and getting into the shape you desire and keeping it. This post will tell you the truth, no BS and with no strings attached. I WANT to see people in March in shape. I want as many people as possible in the gym, training no more than 3-4 hrs per week with the most effective exercises that I, as a personal trainer know to be correct. Not what the media portrays or what the really slim, skinny girl in the office says. You know the one, who eats bagels for breakfast and goes on the Cross trainer 3 times per week and looks like a million dollars.
If you follow these guidelines and more importantly, trust what I am saying, then you CAN be one of those people looking forward to getting into your bikini or board shorts on your summer holiday this year.
1) The majority of your gym sessions should be weight/resistance training
Here are 4 reasons why this is true –
1) Weight training will build muscle and for every pound of muscle you gain you will burn an extra 50kcals. This means you will lose body fat, even at rest.
2) The more muscle you have, the better you cope with insulin which means you have less chance of getting diabetes
3) Having more muscle is the No 1 bio marker of longevity, actually better than overall cholesterol and blood pressure. This means you lose body fat and live longer 🙂
4) The world’s leading strength and conditioning coach, Charles Poliquin who has trained Olympic level athletes says this ” A female executive with a body weight of 60kg and body fat of 20% has about 12kg of fat. If, in 10 weeks she gains 4kg of muscle, this will mean she will lose 4kg of fat and her body fat will now be 13%”
This woman will not only feel empowered, her body will look fantastic!
2) The majority of your diet should be lean sources of protein. Why?
1) Protein will not raise your blood sugar rapidly, instead it will give you a nice slow release of energy, keeping you full until your next feed. Over the day, you will eat less calories
2) Protein is thermogenic. This means that the body will actually use calories in digesting or processing the food.
3) Protein is the building blocks of life. Your muscles are predominantly protein and after a workout they need repairing. A high protein will do this and help you achieve a lean, toned body.
More on protein here
3) You should eat GREENS rather than grains. Why?
1) Most of us on this planet are carb intolerant which means our body can’t process carbohydrates but instead will make us feel bloated, sluggish and store fat easily.
2) Instead of pasta, rice, and cereals, increase your intake of vegetables, particular things like broccoli, spinach and cabbage. These are also thermogenic in nature.
Click here for the low down on why you should avoid carbohydrates
4) You have a good supply of EFA’s or essential fatty acids every day.
These can be obtained either directly from fish such as Salmon, sardines or mackerel, or from high quality fish oils. Other good sources can be Omega 3 eggs, coconut oil and avocado oil
Click here for more on fish oils
Other good sources can come from nuts and seeds. The best are are walnut, almonds and macadamia.
5) You should avoid conventional cardio as much as possible
What I mean by conventional cardio is 20-30 minutes on the stepper or the cross trainer and nearly all group exercise classes, especially spinning
I have left this point until last so I can really explain why cardio will not help the majority of you lose body fat. As I have explained before, I do not have a personal grudge against cardio machines and group exercise classes. I taught aerobics, step and spin for many years myself and I enjoy them but they just don’t do what they are marketed to do.
To link this back to the very first paragraph of this post, I want to see people in the gym performing 2-3 weight training sessions with the odd HIIT session thrown in on top. A good clean healthy diet consisting of lean protein, greens and essential fats and that my friends is the very best way to get the results you all desire. There is no magic pill or potion or home DVD that will do this for you. You dont have to work any harder than you already do, you just need to work smarter and perform the correct exercises and eat the correct diet, all of which has been proven to give you results.
Follow these guidelines for 10-12 weeks and I promise you will be pleased with the results and you will be relishing the thought of getting into your bikini or board shorts this summer 🙂
Any more advice needed, contact me directly on firstname.lastname@example.org
PS Come down and see us near Liverpool Street for a free weekend bootcamp. Just click on the picture below….