The Ultimate Secret to Getting that Lean, Sexy Body and Maintaining It for Life

by Anna D

Most people have a fairly good idea how to lose weight. Eating less and exercising more usually does the trick and our bodies respond fairly quickly especially if it’s been awhile since we have done any kind of calorie control or workout regimen. But, there is one problem that the coaches at Transform FX Fitness see everyday when new clients come to see us – most people who are trying to lose weight or fat seem to do a lot more cardio and hardly any strength training or weight lifting.

The Problem with Cardio Only Workouts

There is no doubt that cardio is important to build up our endurance, stamina, and keep our heart healthy but the results people get from it are fairly short-lived for 2 important reasons:

1) When we do a cardio session, we only burn calories during the actual workout session. This means that once we hop off the treadmill, stairmaster or finish your run outside, we do not burn calories afterwards compared to strength training where we can burn calories up to 48 hours after our workout.

2) We do not build muscles during a cardio session. Muscle is active tissue. This simply means that muscles burn calories so the more of them we have, the more calories we burn while at rest.

The Ultimate Secret to Getting that Lean, Sexy Body and Maintaining It for Life

When it comes to working out, the secret to getting lean and sexy and being able to maintain it for life is to build lean muscle which can only be done with resistance training. Of course, nutrition comes into play but let’s focus on the workout part for the purpose of this post. Resistance training can be done either through bodyweight exercises and lifting traditional weights such as dumbbells and barbells or using other resistance equipment such as bands, kettlebells, medicine balls, etc.

Resistance Training prevents the “Yo-yo Effect” that most dieters experience when they combine they lowered calorie intake with cardio-only workouts because of the lean muscles we gain through this type of training. The diagram below shows this vicious cycle.

fitness_bootcamp_concord_ca

Basically, when we lose weight through lowered calorie intake and doind cardio-only workouts without building muscle, we lose more muscle which reduces our metabolic rate which leads to increased fat storage. Then, one we fall off track on our plan and/or get back to our old habits (it’s safe to say we’ve all done this before at one point or another), we regain body fat because we do not have muscle to burn off the excess calories which results to even more weight and fat than we first started the program.

    So, the answer to the ultimate secret to getting that lean, sexy body and maintaining it for life it to lift weight and to lift heavy.

A concern we may have (especially women) when we lift heavy, is getting bulky. Let’s just say that I know a lot of people (women too) including me, our TFX coaches, our clients that have liften weights, lost fat, got lean, and definitely do not look bulky or look like a man. In fact, the opposite happens, people who lift heavy look leaner and their abs (and everything else) looks tighter because there is less fat covering their muscles. They may be heavier on the scale because muscle is heavier than fat but when you look at them, you would not believe how much they weigh. Personally, since I’ve switched my priority to lifting heavier, most people comment that I look “tiny.” The only way women can look bulky or look like a man is with the help of steroids – period.

How to Use Cardio Effectively in Your Workout Program

If you have ever been to at least one of our workouts here at Transform FX Fitness, you will find that we have found an effective way to combine strength training and cardio in one short calorie-burning sweat session. Plus, we coach our clients with their nutrition choices so the combination of the 2 is what makes the program more effective.

However, if you do still like to do cardiovascular workouts, here are some tips:

1) Perform High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) as much as possible. If you would like more information on how to do this, here is an article you can read on the topic: Why Cardio is Overrated?

2) When you are short on time and you only have 30-45 minutes to workout, perform your strength training workout instead of doing cardio.

3) Use cardio only as a supplement to getting results instead of the ONLY thing you are doing for exercise. When I have a bit more time after a strength training session, I would do my HIIT then and/or do some running on my off-days.

4) Make sure you change up our cardio routine. Most people only stick to the treadmill or stairmaster or only do HIIT or only do jogging. Remember that our bodies adapt fairly quickly to any stimuli so if you do the same thing over and over again, you cannot expect to see different results.

If you want to take out the guess work out of your fitness routine and nutrition choices and you are not already a Transformer, be sure to request a complimentary fitness consultation today by filling out this form: Fitness Consultation Request Form.

Keep Moving Forward (and take others with you),

Anna Dornier
President and Founder

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