Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Workout Wednesday: A Balanced Workout

I get a lot of questions about my workout routine. In today’s Workout Wednesday tip, I thought I’d share with you what I feel is the best overall balanced workout approach.

The first thing you need to do is acknowledge your lack of working out. Next, I recommend you tell someone, a friend or partner about your fitness goals. You’ll be more accountable if you do.

Don’t make any excuses as to why you can’t workout (ie I have my kids, I work, I’m tired). Suck it up! Life gets busy and you have to devise a workout schedule that works for you in your life.

Make the time for yourself and your general well-being and overall health. You don’t need to be in a gym…I get that’s not for everyone. You have a lot at your disposal – just look around and open your mind.

Now you’re set to start making changes.

I recommend (along with a large number of other fitness professionals) to include the following in your workout plan:

Cardio:

At least 2 – 3 times a week (45-60 mins). Why is this important? It maximizes the amount of oxygen in your blood. The better aerobic capacity you have, the more efficient your heart will be. This will make day to day life much easier. Use large muscle groups to get to your heart rate up. Running, walking, swimming, hiking, or dancing are all excellent examples of exercises you can do you. If you are a member at a gym – try taking a fitness class. These are GUARANTEED to kick your butt. If that’s not for you – you can always hire a personal trainer. The options are endless.

Weight / Strength Training:

At least 2 sculpting workouts a week. This can be done in a class environment, or at home, with weights or your own body weight. It’s important to take your muscles to complete failure in order to get maximum results. You want to feel like you can’t do ONE more bicep curl. Why is this important? Weight / Strength training builds bone density. It gives you muscular strength. And, the best part – it increases your metabolism. These are just some of the benefits.

Flexibility Training / Balance & Core:

I’d say at least 1 session a week. This can be done at home in the evening while watching TV (caution: muscles should be warm before stretching). If you like Yoga, try a class – awesomeness! Why is this important? We need to bring our muscles back to pre-workout state. When we do resistance training (with or without weights) we shorten our muscles. Stretching helps to lengthen them back out. It also helps to improve our range of motions in the joints, gives us better posture, better circulation. Flexibility training also helps to relieve stress and most importantly it helps to prevent injury.

If these aren’t enough reasons to get moving, I don’t know what else to say. If you can only manage to fit in 3 of the above in a week – great. Anything is better than nothing. Keep changing things up so you don’t get bored and so you keep your body guessing. In the fitness world, we call this muscle confusion!!

Let me ask you something: do you want to be able to move freely when you are 60 years old? Do you want to be able to reach down low in a cupboard, or sit on the floor to play with your grandchildren? All of the above will make this possible for you down the road.

Working out should be apart of your life. It should be apart of your families life. Make it routine like brushing your teeth in the morning. When you start doing this, your body will notice when you miss a workout. Believe it or not – you will be looking forward to your next one.

I won’t lie – YOU WILL BE SORE. It gets easier. Keep moving the next day and things will loosen up.

Get out there and make fitness apart of your every day life. Don’t give up – the results are worth it!!

Note to self: I need to increase my own cardio training. Need to practice what I preach :)

Be safe, stay healthy and have fun!

Simply Yours,

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