Tag: cardio

Fashion on the Fitness Floor

By Coach K

             Okay Fitfam this one is for the ladies and may seem a bit off the usual fitness point.  A big part of fitness is feeling comfortable.  Working through sets can be challenging and uncomfortable as we push our bodies beyond what they were able to do the day before.  That’s why it’s important that we, especially as women, are comfortable while we are working out.  This means, having confidence in ourselves to walk into a gym for the first time, or hit the weight room where the majority of patrons are men.  As you travel through the fitness journey, whether it’s to lose weight or tone up, the fact that you have decided to take this journey, tells me two things:

  1. You are at least somewhat in part, a perfectionist.
  2. You are not happy with your current physical situation.

Both of these for women can be major confidence killers and really deter us from walking into a gym where the majority of patrons are males and in-shape women.  That’s why it’s important to be comfortable with your body and have confidence.  For me, and I’m sure many women, my clothing choice can really make or break my mood and my confidence.  Just like getting dressed for a night out, choosing cute gym outfits that make me feel cute, cut, or sexy go a long way when I’m struggling through the last few sets.  Being in the gym is about being fearless and strong.  A woman with a fitness physique stands for something bold and unique.  It’s not something any of us would do if we actually listened to everyone who has told us “you’re going to look like a man” or “you won’t be able to keep the weight off”.  So why dull our self-expression with a beat up t-shirt and shorts? Why can’t we look cute? Who says we have to look like men to be in the gym? Who says we have to feel ashamed of our bodies because we have some weight to lose or toning to do?  If wearing booty shorts and a sports bra motivates you to push a little harder during your workouts, then DO IT.  And if you feel the best in an oversized t-shirt and sweats, then DO IT.  Anyone spending their time in the gym concerned with YOUR attire, is not someone who is taking their health too seriously and certainly not someone you need to worry about.  This journey is about YOU so do what you have to do.  Do what you want to do.  Do what makes you happy!

 

We often get asked, what is the best way to drop pounds quickly?  Of course our answer is as cliche as a ’90’s RomCom: fitness is a journey.  In order to get your body to a healthy place, you must change your mindset.  It takes time, dedication, and a renewal of one’s self.  Weight loss is like a rafting adventure, sometimes the waters are calm and you make all of the right choices, other times things can get a little rocky and you just want to bail for dry land.  In order to be successful, you must gain the necessary tools needed to make lifestyle changes. 

That said! We’ve all been in the situation where we want to drop some pounds, say for a friend’s wedding, or you know, in case you run into your ex and just NEED to show off how amazing your life is now…

We, and most of the scientific/health and fitness community, have found there are two great ways you can drop some pesky pounds.   

The first, fasted cardio and how to do it: 

I’m sure some of you may have heard about doing cardio before breakfast.  While it may not be ideal for late sleepers, fasted cardio does have its benefits.  Studies have shown that fast cardio burns up to 20% more fat than cardio after eating.  How this works: our bodies like to use food as energy.  As we eat, our food is broken down into various molecules that our bodies will use to create energy.  If our bodies do not have food to break down into energy, then we rely on our fat storage (lipolysis) to do the heavy lifting.  To make fasted cardio most effective, doing a 30-60 minute light to moderately paced jog, or walking briskly prior to eating in the morning will do the trick.  The lower intensity and longer timed exercises are the ones that will put you into fat burning mode the best.  The down side of fasted cardio, is that our bodies will also potentially pull glucose storages from our muscle, essentially breaking down our muscle to create energy.  For those of us who are trying to bulk up, or make gainz, this may not be ideal.  This potential breakdown however, can be remedied by staying within our fat burning zone (low intensity cardio) and supplementing with protein within 30 minutes after the workout.

Is fasted cardio the most effective way of dropping fat?  This question is complicated.  The human body is very complex and each and every body is different.  In our business, we find that a combination of training methods is best to keep the body actively guessing and always burning.  This is where our second method comes in.  

The trendy HIIT: 

High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) seems to be all the rage right now, and for good reason.  Although we physically labor in the gym, most of the results are formed post workout.  HIIT is an excellent way to keep your body burning long after you’ve worked out and it only takes 10-15 minutes! Even tacking on a 10 minute HIIT work out to the end of your weight training can have huge benefits in terms of fat burning.  Once our bodies deplete the energy we have fed into it, additional energy will be pulled from our fat storages as the body begins to break down fat to fuel our movements. 

So, in the end, what is the best way to burn fat and drop some pounds? In our experience both fasted cardio and HIIT have worked.  The most important thing is to keep a clean and healthy diet to fuel our bodies when we are not in the gym.  In order to lose weight, your body needs to be an a caloric deficit.  If your body isn’t forced to use it’s fat storage as fuel, it won’t. In this case, you won’t be losing any weight, you’ll just be mentally burnt out from early morning work outs, late night weight training, and celery sticks. 

A healthy combination of a good diet, fasted cardio, HIIT, and weight training is ideal to shed fat and sustain weight loss.      

By: Kerri Bradley