Monday, June 1, 2009

Am I lying to you? Pt. 2

Last time I asked the question of whether fat loss can actually be done by only changing what you eat, when you eat it and how much of it you eat. And I hope everyone now realizes that although it can be difficult, with proper planning and structure it can be done.

Today is round 2 of the weight loss lie: Can I lose weight with exercise?

Improving health and losing weight through exercise can be explained like this. It comes down to the fact that there are two types of people in this world:

Men and Women.

Yeah, I know great joke huh? But each will work out differently based on what they want and the dogma that surrounds exercise and weight.

Beach Bodies

Men have no problem wanting to build muscle. Its what they want but often the motivation and perseverance lacks. In women the problem is that although many are willing to put in the motivation and effort at the gym, there is an intensity issue. Simply put, women are afraid to get out of their comfort zone.

Men fail to properly progress and often only want to work the beach body muscles (aka the front) and will beat these muscles into oblivion. This often leads to mechanical break down and injury. With proper progression a person builds up the ability to handle the heavier weights that they want to use.

Proper progression will also ensure that a person trains a muscle groups and movements that will not only allow them to build muscles, but to build usable muscle that prevents injury and improves aesthetics as well as ability. Once they are in a weight room, men don't really lack in the motivation, only direction. So guys, keep working hard and building muscle.

"I just want to tone up!"

Women on the other hand, want to "tone", which by now we have labeled as a nonsensical idea. Tone is simply the reduction in fat and the INCREASE IN MUSCLE. Did all the women in the room hear me? To be "toned" you must increase muscle! But the average woman's hour of exercise looks like the garbage that comes out of SELF magazine: A bunch of women in a size 2 performing exercises that wouldn't raise the heart rate of a house cat.

Here is THE TRUTH - in order to have "tone" you must add muscle and cut fat. To add muscle, you have to use an intensity that is high enough to stimulate growth! This is called the minimal essential strain (MES).

MES usually applies to bone development, which is also important, but here the concept applies to muscle building. If you want "tone" in your arms, use a weight you could only perform 8-10 repetitions. So for most women 8-10 pounds per arm should be sufficient.

It is this reason why here in our Hi-5 FitCamp I am always encouraging the group to work harder. You're only here 4 hours per week. So you have to make it count!! Go heavier/harder than usual, get out of your comfort zone and build some muscle!

By combining hard(er) work and changing your eating habits, you're going to change the way you look. But if you keep doing what you've always done, you'll get what you've always got.

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