Do 30 minutes of aerobic exercise 5 days a week
Aerobic exercise or cardio gets the heart pumping faster and breathing rate up. Doing this a minimum of 150 minutes per week (or 30 minutes five days per week) is imperative to have a healthy heart.
Exercises that easily accomplish elevated heart and breathing rates include walking at a brisk pace (not strolling), jogging or running, cycling, and swimming laps (not frolicking in the water).
Circuit Training is another way to get in cardio. Pick 3 to 5 exercises and perform each with minimal rest between each exercise. Repeat the “circuit” of 3 to 5 exercise three times to four times.
Focus on Your Technique and Form, Not the Amount of Weight Lifting
When you go to the gym, it’s real easy to let your ego get in the way of your training. You see Bobby over there grabbing heavy dumbbells and not to be out done, you also grab heavier weights than you should. Don’t let Bobby knock you off your training plan!
Poor technique while lifting will cause injury. If you lift too heavy, you will have poor technique. Anytime you are trying a new exercise, either do it with no weights or only use light weights. Get the form down always engaging the core before trying to bump up the weight.
- Lifting heavy weight with bad technique causes injuries
- Improper form reaps little gains
- Learn how to perform an exercise first with little to no weight
Getting stronger doesn’t always mean lifting heavy! Train smart!
Consistency is the Key to Success
In order to be successful in achieving your fitness and/or weight loss goals, you have to be consistent. The road to success requires you to be 100% committed. That sounds daunting. It’s not if you focus on achieving daily goals.
Daily goals are a lot less intimidating than the big end goal. Here are the steps to take to for daily success:
- List your goals. Identify 2 to 3 areas of your day that you can realistically “tweak”. Work daily to improve in those areas. Stick with perfecting these goals until it is absolutely a daily habit and no longer hard for you to achieve.
- Make a schedule. One of the number one ways to fail is not scheduling our your week. Set your expectations on your calendar just like you would with any other type of appointment. Taking care of yourself should become priority because it makes you more able to accomplish all your other tasks and be there fully for your loved ones.
- Conquer each day. While that seems self explanatory, this is key to your success. If running a marathon is your ultimate goal, you cannot reach that goal without the day-to-day well planned runs and off days. If you want to lose 15 pounds, you cannot reach that goal without holding yourself to the 2-3 daily goals and conquering them. It is the daily effort that brings you to the finish line. And, if you slip up, it’s one day. Don’t beat yourself up. Lord willing, you have tomorrow to get back on track.
Do 30-45 Minutes of Low-Intensity Cardio on Active Recovery Days, especially after Leg Day
Low-Intensity activities provide unexpected benefits when done on recovery days. Active recovery increases blood flow to muscles without putting too much strain on your muscles and joints helping to reduce soreness and speed up muscle rebuilding. Good activities for Low-Intensity cardio include swimming, cycling, walking, jogging, and yoga. Keep effort light.
For an exercise to be considered low-intensity, keep your heart at 60-75% of max.
The benefits of active recovery days includes increased fat burn and improved aerobic capacity.
Burn More Fat with Walk-Run Interval Training
Studies have shown that briskly walking then running then walking then running (interval training) very effectively burns fat and gets you in shape faster than just locking into a steady pace over the same distance. The run segments need to be challenging, not a mere jog. This method also reduces injuries, especially when new to running or getting back to running after prolonged break.
- The ratio of walk-to-run should about 3:1. For example, walk 3 minutes, run 1 minute, walk 3 minutes, run 1 minute, etc.
- Walk pace should be at a 15 minute/mile pace or faster
- Start with walking then run then walk, repeat
- Repeat over targeted distance
Happy interval training!