June: Kick Butt Cardio!
Yes, I am guilty of loving to run…I know, I know, I’m a rare breed. For most, long, low-intensity cardio sessions can be incredibly monotonous and boring. However, like most of you moms, I am always trying to find the workout that delivers the best results with the least amount of time commitment. I have been guilty of rushing my workouts so I can get home to lil’ Grif.
Rush no more…research proves that only twenty minutes of high intensity interval training not only burns more fat calories than long, low–intensity cardio sessions (30-45min) but it also creates an “after-burn” (boosts your metabolism before and after), drastically increases your VO2max (aerobic capacity), and maintains lean muscle mass.
A study conducted by WSU concluded that participants who performed 90 sessions of long, moderate-intensity cardio over 20 weeks only lost 1% body fat. However, participants who performed 25 sessions of moderate intensity cardio mixed with 35 sessions of high intensity cardio over only 15 weeks lost an incredible 3% body fat!
As odd as this might sound, the long distance runs that I love so much can actually be counterproductive. Long, low intensity cardio can actually eat up hard earned muscle for those that are more fit. Remember, the more muscle you have the more calories you burn.
So, we don’t want to “eat up” our hard earned muscle. Here’s what we do. Replace 1-2 of our long, low-moderate intensity workouts with a kick butt interval workout. Over time, if you are feeling extra motivated, work your way up to 3 high intensity interval cardio sessions. However, never ever do them back to back. Our bodies need time to recover, repair and build.
This month, kick it with this WICKED WALK interval workout. As the month goes on, don’t hesitate to pick it up by adding another interval or increasing the inclines.
Wicked Walk: Printable Version
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Weekly Fit Tip
How Much Weight Should I Use?
We all know that strength training is a huge part of losing weight and getting results. But, are you lifting enough weight; that is the real question.
Chances are, probably not. You should be lifting 60-80% of your 1RM (repetition max). So, for example, if you can perform the leg press with 100lbs only 1 time, then somewhere between 60-80lbs would be your magic number.
However, I think it is easier to think of it this way. You should be able to complete anywhere between 8 and 15 reps. But, here's the key. The last 3 reps should really be challenging. If you breeze right through them and get to 15 with no problem, then you aren’t using enough weight to stimulate muscle growth.
I know what you are thinking; you don’t want to get bulky. Listen, it can’t happen, it’s not possible…we don’t have enough testosterone! Remember, the more muscle you have, the faster your metabolism is, the more calories you will burn throughout the day. So, get in there and really give those muscles a workout!
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Look What's New!
There is so much confusion that revolves around fitness and pregnancy. Too often, many fail to realize that the ACOG (Amercian College of Obstetrics and Gynecology) guidelines for exercise have been revised and updated.
Let me assure you, the days of sitting on the couch for nine months (even though we all might feel like it sometimes) and eating for two are over. Pregnancy is a time to be healthy, exercise and get/stay fit…for mom and baby.
Talk to Me!
In the next week I plan on adding a page in which you can contact me. So, if you have a healthy recipe, a new awesome strength training move, a suggestion for a future newsletter or even an inspiring success story, I would love to hear from you. Don't hesitate to ask a question or share an idea. Also, feel free to forward this onto a friend!
"The miracle isn't that I finished. The miracle is that I had the courage to start."
John Bingham, running speaker and writer