120613 Using exercise to lose and maintain your weight
“The starting point of all achievement is desire. Keep this constantly in mind. Weak desires bring weak results, just as a small fire makes a small amount of heat.” — Napoleon Hill, author
Many people equate physical fitness with being able to run long distances or ride the cardio machines for a long time without stopping. Certainly those are admirable goals but jogging or using these machines for long slow workouts does very little to increase your fat loss. One proven way to lose fat is to increase the intensity. You can do that by doing hard, fast, intense intervals.
Interval workouts consist of specific, high-intensity, time limited exercises and using 20 to 90 seconds of rest in between each high-intensity section.
For example, if running outside, you would warm up with an easy 5-minute run. Once warmed up, you would transition into 5 to 10 high-speed sprints. Each of these high intensity sprints would last between 20 to 30 seconds at approximately 80 and 90% of your fastest speed. Keep in mind that if you continuously try to go one hundred percent of your fastest speed, eventually you will create a speed barrier, which is another topic altogether and will not be further discussed. Suffice it to say these self-inflicted physical and mental barriers are hard to break.
By continually challenging yourself and lowering the rest periods between the intervals you increase the intensity, which increases the benefits, which burns more calories. It sure sounds simple doesn’t it?
Anyone trying to lose weight knows it’s not as easy as this to do. Cardiovascular exercise is not the only ticket to increasing weight loss nor is it the only ticket to staying physically fit. Well-structured weight-loss programs utilize strength training to boost metabolism (1) and increase lean muscle mass.
(1) Metabolism–noun 1. Biology, Physiology. The sum of the physical and chemical processes in an organism by which its material substance is produced, maintained, and destroyed.