Fatblaster - One Month Workout
Okay, let's say you've been working out for a few weeks or months and you don't think you're making progress fast enough. You've checked with your doctor and have been given the go-ahead to work out hard, and you're not taking any medications that might interfere with your heart or lungs. Here's an option to kick-start your fat loss programme. You can do it once and then go on a more moderate programme. Or do it a few times a year as a "booster shot".
If you do the Fat Blaster, you've got to lose body fat. But think about it and get ready mentally, because if you go into your fat-blaster month half-heartedly, you won't get good results. On the other hand, if you decide, "Yes, this is it, I'm going to change my life and change my body," you will be delighted.
Do an aerobic activity five to six times a week.
This means walking, running, cycling, aerobics class or other cardiovascular exercise. The duration should be between 20 to 60 minutes (including a brief warm-up and cool-down) in your target heart rate zone. Try and avoid doing the same aerobic exercise every time as your body will become accustomed to it and the exercise will be less effective.
To fight boredom, try breaking up your activity into different components. For example, if you are doing an hour of cardio work, do 20 minutes on the stationary bike, 20 minutes on the stairmaster and 20 minutes on the treadmill. It's best to do it all at one time, but if necessary break it up over the course of the day if you must.
Do extra cardio by finding ways to fit the joy of movement into your daily life. Take the stairs, put on favourite music and dance at home, run errands by bicycle and work in the garden.
These activities add up in terms of burning calories. For example, you burn one calorie each time you climb five steps. If you run up four flights of stairs that have nine steps each, you've burned about seven calories. If you do that every other day, you'll burn an extra 183 calories a year, practically without thinking about it. Add in other daily activities and you can make a difference in your body.
Target Heart Rate
To estimate your target heart rate (fat burning range), subtract your age from 220, and multiply the answer by .60. Then subtract your age from 220 and multiply that answer by .85. Those two numbers represent your target heart rate zone. For example, if you're 40, your range is 106 to 153. You can round that out to 105 to 155. When you do your aerobic exercise, try to work hard enough to keep your pulse in that range. But remember, as you become fitter, your pulse will slow because your heart becomes more efficient. (The ordinary person has a resting heart rate of about 70, the aerobically fit person may have a resting heart rate in the low 50s.) Increase your intensity and time as you are able.
If all these calculations are a pain for you, use the "talk test" to monitor your level of exertion. This means that you work at an intensity so that your speech becomes somewhat breathless, but not so hard that you cannot talk at all.
Whether you use the target heart rate or the talk test, after a while you'll know how you feel when you are burning fat. Look for that feeling when you work out next time, and keep it there for at least 20 minutes during your cardiovascular exercise. It's alright to lower and raise the intensity as you need to during this time.
HIIT it Hard
If you are running, walking, stair-climbing or biking, try varying the intensity from moderate to high during a session. This is called high intensity interval training (HIIT) and is a great fat-burner. A good way to start is to alternate jogging for a minute with sprinting for 30 seconds.
Maybe you'll do only five minutes (or less) at first, and you'll have to work your way up. That's fine -- we all have to start somewhere. Five minutes will turn into ten and so on. The first time I got on the stairmaster, I barely could crank out four minutes at the lowest level. Within a couple of months, I could do an hour at a high level.
Work out with weights three to four times a week.
More muscle means a higher metabolism. A well-muscled body burns more calories all day long - even while not exercising - than a body with a higher fat-to-muscle ratio. Your resting metabolism accounts for 60 to 75 percent of your daily energy expenditure. Even a modest increase in your metabolism (the amount of calories your body burns at rest) can improve your body composition. Every pound of muscle you add to your body burns 35 to 50 extra calories per day.
You don't need to have every workout session with your trainer if cost is a concern. Your trainer can write out a schedule for you to follow when she's not with you. But do try to work out with a partner -- someone who will help you push and not just go through the motions, and someone you can trust to spot you safely. If you must work out alone, use machines instead of free weights if you can't get someone to spot you. But do it and do it hard - no excuses.
Don't worry about "bulking up". Some women are afraid to work with weights for fear they will have huge muscles. High blood levels of testosterone are needed for that, along with intense effort and very heavy workouts. It won't happen unless you want it to.
Scrupulous Attention To Diet
Eat clean, healthy foods every few hours during the day.
For this month, be completely strict. No fried foods, no alcohol, no starchy carbohydrates after 5 pm, no fatty or sugary foods, and no starving. No exceptions for this month -- not for special occasions, not for parties, not to please a friend or client -- let nothing and nobody (even your mother) get in your way of healthy eating this month.
Learn the difference between hunger and appetite. Hunger is when you need food -- your stomach growls; you feel weak, your blood sugar levels are dropping. Appetite is when you feel like putting something in your mouth -- you are bored, or worried or just feel like having a particular food. It's a desire, not a need. There's nothing wrong with appetite (it is one of life's many pleasures) but know it for what it is so you control it, not the other way around.
Be aware that thirst can masquerade as hunger, too. We often reach for food (such as fruit) when we are thirsty; if you're not sure, try having a glass of water before eating anything. If you're still hungry after the water, go ahead and eat.
It's important to keep healthy foods handy, so your blood sugar levels don't have the chance to plummet, leaving you overly hungry and susceptible to the "I've got to eat something NOW!" condition that leads us to eat whatever is nearby.
Eating every few hours may seem excessive at first. But as your metabolism increases, you will need to eat more often. Keep the portions small to moderate. Your aim is to keep your blood sugar levels steady.
Don't eat late at night. Finish your last meal of the day by 7 pm. If you are hungry later, have a protein shake made with water or skim milk.
Eat vegetables over fruit, because fruit is high in sugar (fructose). Don't eat any fruit at all after mid-afternoon. Drink plenty of water (at least eight glasses) and avoid sugary foods and beverages (they can cause your blood sugar levels to spike and plunge). If you are used to coffee or tea, that is ok to continue. Eat lots of lean, high-quality protein.
Get plenty of sleep.
Sufficient, quality sleep is vital. Your body can't be at top efficiency without rest. Most people function best with seven to eight hours of sleep nightly.
Heart Rate And Temperature
Track your pulse and body temperature
To monitor your progress, find out what your pulse is at its lowest point, which is when you first wake up. Take your pulse before you get out of bed in the morning. You should leave a stopwatch or clock with a second hand right next to the bed, so you can take your pulse as soon as you wake up. Count the number of beats (starting with zero) for 30 seconds and multiply by two. Once you have your baseline morning pulse, keep track of changes. If it gets higher by more than four or five beats, you may be overtraining (or coming down with a cold or other illness), and need to cut back a bit.
Check your first morning temperature, too. If your temperature is low (below 97) your metabolism may be low, too. If this persists, talk to your trainer (who may refer you to your doctor).
The Head Game
See your target in your mind's eye.
Intensify the mind/body connection. Think about your goals, and what you are doing to achieve them. Tell your body what you want from it. When you do triceps press downs, for example, think about that muscle group, picture the back of your arm firming and strengthening. The discomfort you feel when you work hard is your friend; it is helping you get where you want to be.
When you run, or do the stairmaster, think about the fat flying off your body, and your healthy heart and lungs working. If weight loss is your goal, picture yourself slim, light, and lithe. If a muscular body is what you want, imagine yourself strong, lean and powerful. Having a clear picture of what you want is not only a first step, but an ongoing step in meeting your goal.
See the rose, not the thorn. After a while, you may come to realise there is no thorn.
Remember, do it hard and do it well. But pay attention to your body -- if you have pain (not soreness) or get dizzy, faint, overly flushed or nauseated, stop. Try again when you feel better, or seek medical attention if it continues.
You've got to get results if you put your heart into it, and a few other muscles as well.