Meet Our Featured Trainers – Sophie from Talking to Trees

SOPHIE 1 cMeet Sophie.

Sophie introduces you to some simple abdominal exercises such as criss-cross, single and double leg stretch, giving you options to regress or progress throughout. From there she takes you on a glute blasting journey transitioning from prone to kneeling and finally to a standing squat series. She completes the workout by returning to the core and offers three strong rounds of core boosters!
Sophie would like to personally thank all the people that took the time to get in touch with her to give feedback on her eFit30 classes. Especially those who contacted her and asked for more. It was your feedback and stories that inspired Sophie to make two more videos with the intention to help you all with your personal movement journeys.

Sophies Video Playlist offer participants challenging Pilates and Yoga inspired workouts designed to – Strengthen students’core stabilising muscles, prevent injury and improve posture and body awareness.

Sophie offers a safe and fun environment to encourage students to feel their body in space and to move with the breath.

Sophies full Playlist is HERE.

sophie@talkingtotrees.com.au
Sophie Ntoumenopoulos
Pilates and Yoga instructor
Www.talkingtotrees.com.au

@talkingtotrees_sophie

What Does the Rowing Machine Target? 5 Essentials You Need to Know

Notorious for burning up to 50% more calories than the treadmill, rowing machines offer more than just an upper body workout. Effectively targeting all the muscle groups in your back, shoulders, arms and legs, these training machines have become a popular option for building strength and shredding kilos.

The rowing machine is designed to offer a non-impact full body workout, so it’s become an ideal mechanism for fitness enthusiasts with joint and lower back problems. Boosting cadio fitness, muscular strength and endurance and working to tone your muscles, rowing machines can also work in reducing stress levels and building stamina. But like with any fitness machine it’s absolutely essential to use it properly and avoid the common mistakes. Here’s what you need to know about your rowing machine workout.

sport, fitness, lifestyle, technology and people concept - woman with trainer working out on exercise bike in gym

sport, fitness, lifestyle, technology and people concept – woman with trainer working out on exercise bike in gym

1. Building Core Strength and Stamina

When rowing machines are used properly, they are a fantastic training tool for building core strength and stamina. For people that struggle to get-up-and-go, using a rowing machine (also known as a cross trainer) 20 minutes a day can boost endurance. Whilst the workouts may feel exhausting at first, the long term benefits of giving you more energy, building stamina and you metabolism are huge.

Because the rowing machine works all your major muscle groups it helps to define your abs and build muscles around the area. Your core strength is one of these targeted groups of muscles and through the low-impact, high intensity workouts offered by the cross trainer it’s possible to get maximum results.

Tip: If you’re looking to build core strength and stamina through a rowing machine, opt for a higher intensity exercise so it isn’t just the cardio you’re working on.  The impact on your abs and core is based on the strength of your rowing so the harder the workout, the better it will work for this area.

2. Toning Arms and Legs

Rowing machines are ideal for both an upper body and lower body workout. Because the machine forces you to ‘row’ the arms are used extensively and muscles in this area will begin to tone (particularly the biceps and forearms).  As you pull, your back muscles help to complete the rowing technique with your shoulder blades retracting together.

The rowing stroke should behind with the legs – the most powerful part of the body, with your back kept straight throughout. As the machine starts to utilise every major muscle group, your arms, back and legs muscles will activate and tone over time.

Tip: If you want to increase the rate of which you build and tone muscle, adjust the rowing machine to create a tighter resistance. With the right workouts and technique, this can help to tone your arms and legs quicker.

3. Strengthening Back Muscles

The benefits of a stronger back and shoulders are great for improving posture and eliminating back pain. Because rowing machines work the back and shoulder muscles, it doesn’t take long for this area to strengthen and better support the rest of your body.

The trapezius in the lower and upper back as well as the rhomboids in your shoulder will receive a great workout. Whilst the cross trainer workout starts with driving through the legs and engaging your quads, your upper body and back muscles are involved at the end of the extension.

Tip: People often make the mistake of driving hard with the legs and keeping the shoulders in front of the hips so that that when the slide stops the rest of the body swings through. This can be hard on the lower back so aim for everything to end at the same time in a fluid motion for best results.

4. Know What Settings to Work

The damper setting (like the gears of a bicycle) should be set for 3-5 for the best workout. Many people make the mistake of setting it to 10, especially athletes, because the higher number gives the impression the workout will be more challenging. Really the challenge lies in the ability to accelerate the flywheel at a lower damper setting as the higher setting will mimic a slow heavy rowboat instead. This will only exhaust your muscles before you’ve had a shot at a proper cardio workout. Keeping it set for 3-5 will give the feeling similar to being on water, like a rowing machine is intended for.

The resistance setting will determine how much energy you use on each stroke. This dial is on the machine’s flywheel and should be high enough to maintain a fast, smooth rowing motion. Setting it too low will give a workout that doesn’t tone or strengthen, whilst setting it too high can result in muscle fatigue and injury.

5. Avoid the Biggest Cross Trainer Mistakes

  • Don’t row with only your arms: Use the power of your legs for each stroke and keep your feet strapped in. Pull through with your back, shoulders and arms for a full body workout.
  • Don’t hunch your back during strokes: Keep your back straight and sit tall with a straight posture to avoid damage. Keep your core engaged to help with the potions and put your spine in neutral.
  • Don’t ignore the stroke rate: Stroke rates build a better workout and determine how hard you’re pulling. To focus on the power of spinning the flywheel, think of a rowing ratio of 1 beat for every 2 beats you travel up the slide. For example: A good target stroke, measured in strokes per minute) will range between 24-30.
  • Don’t ignore the foot strap: It should be fastened so your feet feel very secure. This can make a massive difference when it comes to pushing your legs for power.

Author Bio

This article is written by Jayde Ferguson who recommends Orbit Fitness – the largest supplier of fitness equipment and cross trainers in Perth. You can catch Jayde on Google+ to discuss this piece.

Cross Trainer vs. Treadmill for Burning Calories: Which One Should You Be Using?

Finding the best workout plan to burn calories tends to be the highest fitness goal. But with the busy lifestyles we lead and the limited amount of time we have to actually get it done, people want – and need to – get the results fast in order to maintain a healthy level of enthusiasm. And the right machine plays a huge role in achieving your fitness goals as quick as possible.

You walk into the fitness club or the store for your next home gym purchase and you see the usual assortment of cardio equipment. Which exercise machine do you pick to burn calories in the shortest amount of time? Cardio machines are perfect for giving you the ultimate workout to shred some kilos without leaving the comfort of your home. Two of the best examples of these machines, the treadmill and the elliptical cross trainer, are subjects of an ongoing debate to determine which will give you the most effective cardio workout. Here’s a few tips to find out what one you should be using:

1. Cranking Up the Cross Trainer

Elliptical cross trainers have boomed in popularity because they are highly variable in their workout opportunities and burn a decent amount of calories. Perfect for fitness enthusiasts at any level, they decrease the impact on your bones and joints by engaging more on your muscle groups making them an ideal machine option for people with previous or ongoing injuries.

Man and woman with elliptical cross trainer at gym

It’s this comfort that makes the cross trainer such a versatile and valued exercise machine. They have more workout options than most other machines, building on strength as well as cardio. For the best cardio workout you’ll want the machine to be on high resistance. This is more important that working out at a fast pace when it comes to cross trainers and burning calories.

If a cross trainer is more suited to your fitness goals and health needs, opt for one with handles. This allows you to pump your arms as you move which is highly advised to do. By adding this movement to your workout, your upper body muscles will be engaged and this will help burn more calories.

2. Tackling the Treadmill

Ideal for extreme cardio lovers and those that thrive off running, treadmills have the potential to burn a lot of body fat. Running (or jogging) involves a good full-body workout and if you choose a speed setting that challenges you, it’s one of the best ways to burn a significant amount of calories.

Treadmills offer both low and high impact cardio workouts from slow walks at a controlled pace to runs and sprints and full potential. These machines allow you to set your desired speed and incline and because you’re forced to keep up with the moving belt, treadmills are slightly better for burning calories. This is due to the machine holding you at an intensified level. To burn the most amount of calories in the shortest time frame you’ll want to maintain an incline grade of at least 1-2%.

People running on treadmills

3. Essential Considerations

The problem with cardio workouts is it doesn’t take long for your body to become immune to the workout. As you get comfortable in your fitness plan, you’ll burn less calories because the resistance has diminished. This is why, regardless of what exercise machine you choose, it’s essential your cardio workouts are mixed up to continually challenge your body and keep burning more calories.

Other factors that can impact your ability to shred kilos on either exercise machines include your level of cardio fitness, the weight you’re sitting on now, how intense the workout is and how long you’re working out for. Once your body is at ease with the cardio workout; change the dynamics, speed and intensity of what you’re doing – the higher the resistance the more effective it’ll be.

4. Crunching Calories

The primary reason why many choose the cross trainer over the treadmill is because they don’t enjoy running – whether it’s because of injuries or just the fact that jogging and running isn’t their thing. But if you crave variety and strength building too, then make sure you focus on maintaining a moderate to high intensity. This way the cross trainer can still provide an excellent calorie burning workout (around 600-800 calories per hour). Choose the right settings for your body type and use intervals. Because the cross trainer is one of the easiest machines to just ‘tune out’ on, make sure you focus on your workout and avoid hanging onto the support bars as this won’t help in crunching calories at all!

On average, the treadmill will burn 600-1200 calories per hour between jogging, walking uphill, sprinting and running. To effectively burn calories quickly keep interchanging; start with a slow warm up for 2-3 minutes and break into a run for 3-6 minutes, sprint for 6-7 minutes, run for 7-10, sprint for 10 etc. Ideally you want to commit to a 20-30 minute workout at least. Keep workouts intense and build bone density and shred calories by elevating the incline on the treadmill.

Despite the cross trainer ticking a variety of fitness boxes, there’s still greater weight loss benefits with a treadmill. Mixing between the two exercise machines at the gym though can get all muscle groups moving and keep your cardio workouts spontaneous and intense. Invest in a heart rate monitor and maintain a solid awareness of your intensity levels to ensure you’re burning the most amount of calories – regardless of the machine you choose.

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Author Bio

Jayde Ferguson writes for Orbit Fitness – the largest supplier of fitness equipment in Perth. You can catch Jayde on Google+ to discuss this piece.

Optimal Workout Equipment Settings for Your Fitness Goals

Young fit woman rowing indoor on a rowing machine

With the range of equipment on the market these days it’s important you’re not just choosing the right workout piece, but engaging in the right settings to achieve your goals too. Whether you want to push for weight loss with summer around the corner or need to build muscle tone and strength, sometimes the ‘right’ equipment can be very wrong for you when you’re not using it properly.

Regardless of it you love training at the gym or you’ve purchased a few key workout pieces to set up in your home gym, finding the optimal settings can help kick those fitness goals more effectively. Get more out of what you’re using with these tips:

1. Exercise Bikes

Getting fit for summer on an exercise bike is a popular option because of the level of comfort it provides. Great for those that prefer to sit down whilst exercising, this piece will help to burn calories and boost cardio exercise. For those that want an extra level of support on the exercise bike, recumbent bikes are designed to have a reclined body seat and pedals in front of the bike instead of under the body like a regular bike. This offers the use more comfort and a better leg workout.

To get the most out of your workout, you’ll want the speed level to sit between 80-100 RPM. It’s crucial you don’t pedal at the same speed for the full workout though – especially if you’re wanting to burn calories. Instead, mix it up by riding at lower speed (50-70 RPM) and then crank to 120-140 RPM. The lower speeds will help to build leg muscle, whilst the switch to more intense speeds will assist in shredding weight and boost endurance.

You’ll also want to consider the resistance and heart rate monitor settings. By alternating between low and medium resistance settings, fat-burning will happen quicker. For the most effective workout, keep your heart rate between 50-85%.

2. Treadmills

If you’re looking to build muscles in your calves, quads and glutes your treadmill should be set to 9% incline. This is the ideal setting for marathon training, boosting endurance and slashing kilos too and will give you that burning sensation in your legs after a workout. If you’re just looking to boost those running skills though, a simple 1.5% incline will mimic outdoor running. For extreme marathon or steep hike training change the incline closer to 15%.

Both the speed and incline of the treadmill should never be too high where you find yourself walking, sprinting or running without moving your hands. Like with the exercise bike, you want to switch your speed and incline settings to mix the workout up. This will save your body getting too comfortable in a certain setting – as soon as you’re ‘comfortable’ your body is burning less calories! To build endurance, use high-intensity workouts and switch between a 4-5% to a 0% incline during various running intervals. Walkers and slow joggers will only need to a speed of 10-12km/h whilst serious joggers and runners should go for 16-20km/h.

3. Elliptical Machines

A steady 20 minute workout on an elliptical machine can shred that extra weight and get your heart rate up, boosting endurance and strength training.  But to get the full effect, the right settings are important. As far as cardio equipment goes elliptical machines, also known as cross trainers, are the powerhouse of cardio equipment; having the potential to burn 270-400 calories in less than 30 minutes.

Interval workouts are the best on these machines to boost metabolism and burn more calories. Because it gets your whole body moving, it’s ideal for strength training too. To boost strength and improve weight loss, the resistance of the machine needs to be increased – the more you turn that dial up, the more strength you’ll be building.

For a medium workout on the cross trainer, aim for a RPM of 90. Keep increasing the resistance and incline though to ensure your heart rate is high. For a full-intensity hard work out to get everything burning (including calories!) you can still go for a 90 RPM but aim for a maximum heart rate between 90-100%, as opposed to a medium work out of 85-90%. Resistance is key to achieving fitness goals on a cross trainer; once this level is bumped up, your arms and legs have to work harder to keep the machine moving. This offers a full body workout to build endurance and strength. For a more intense interval, adjust the incline to a higher level too.

4. Rowing Machine

These machines have a reputation for offering a low-impact workout that increases stamina, builds on muscle strength and drops those calories. The biggest problem with this machine is users tend to forget the damper setting – a crucial lever on the side of the rower’s wheel that can give you a solid cardio workout.

Before using this setting, make sure your rowing form is in top notch. Like gears on a bicycle, the damper setting will offer a heavier feel on the body the higher the gear. Start it on between 3-5 which will mimic the feeling of rowing in the water, and build it up to power your legs and upper body. You should feel it working your legs, butt, arms and back muscles.
Author Bio

Jayde Ferguson writes for Orbit Fitness – the largest supplier of fitness equipment in Perth. You can catch Jayde on Google+ to discuss this piece.

Budget vs. “Blow Out” Home Gyms – 5 Essential Tips to Consider

You don’t need to take out a gym membership to fully develop your body and kick those fitness goals. In fact, home gyms have boomed in popularity over the years as gym enthusiasts choose the comfort of their home over the busyness of the actual gym. Offering a sense of freedom in the hectic lifestyle we live, setting up your own home gym can be the perfect motivation to train regardless of what your wallet or the weather throws at you.

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But how can you create the most effective home gym on a budget? Gym equipment isn’t cheap and whilst those big ticket items will be seen as an investment when you start looking and feeling fantastic, you need to completely blow out your savings to make it happen. Home gyms can build great results and it can be just as safe and as effective as being at the public gym. Here’s a few essential tips to help you stay within budget:

1. Go for Quality over Quantity

Building a gym at home doesn’t mean purchasing every single piece of equipment you ‘need’. Opt for quality items that can tick multiple fitness goals rather jamming your space with bits and pieces. Home gyms are usually scarce on space so be smart about your choices.

Dumbbells are an at-home-gym classic because of the amount of exercises you can do with them, they justify the purchase almost straight away. Opt for pro-styled dumbbells like the RDCH 1-80 kg with recycled rubber coating as these last longer and much more comfortable to use, not to mention eliminate the toxic smells new rubber can give off. These can be stored on a special dumbbell rack and uses rubber coated plates and chrome end to make up the weight ensuring the dumbbell diameter stays the same and are idea for bicep curls and other weight exercises. Other quality essentials can include a medicine ball (ideal for core strength movements), a barbell with different weight plates (a staple for almost every gym) and an adjustable bench that can decline, incline and lay flat.

2. Defining Your Fitness Goals

Understanding exactly what you want to work out will make your gym decisions easier. Define your personal fitness goals and make sure you’re investing in things that help you get there quickly and as comfortably as possible. Are you wanting to focus on strength training or shred some weight through cardio fitness? If you are wanting to lose weight, don’t make the mistake of thinking it’s all about cardio. Whilst you want to get your heartbeat up and burning calories, cardio exercises alone aren’t enough before after a few weeks your body adjusts and stops losing weight. Incorporating a combination of cardio and resistance training however, is a better place to start.

Most home gym aren’t complete without a barbell and some weight plates to go with it. Weights are ideal for any home gym because they offer a balanced combo of cardio and resistance training. Through the right weights, you have the stabilisation and coordination aspect to your workout and allows you to use different weights depending on your fitness goals. Make sure you look for a sturdy barbell that isn’t cheap looking and flimsy. Pay attention to the diameter of the bar, too.

3. The Bare Essentials vs. a Fully-Fitted Home Gym

There’s a few at home gym staples that are compact and easy enough to tick off some fitness goals, without taking up too much space. Medicine balls are an essential purchase before they offer a variety of exercises to build core strength movements. You can focus on abdominal exercises, throw or catch the ball to assist with different muscle groups. Opt for one that is soft and if you’re unsure about the weight, go for lighter to emphasise speed and power in your workout.

Stability balls are as important as dumbbells to your home gym and will help to build balance and strength. You can do hamstring curls, abdominal crunches, squats, body bridges and so much more. They are cost-effective, easy to store and offer a good variety of workouts to suit every fitness level. Other at home gym essentials can include resistance bands, which are extremely versatile and can be strapped to the door, table or workout bench, and a jump rope for cardio workouts. Look for a rope that’s lightweight for speed and timing or a weighted rope for strength.

4. Big Ticket Items

Big ticket gym items can get expensive really quickly if you let them, so opt for 1-3 pieces max. If cardio is important, invest in a treadmill, bike or elliptical training depending on your fitness needs. If you love running but not during the winter months by all means get a treadmill – but be realistic about what big ticket items are absolutely necessary to your home gym. If weight training is a priority

If you want something that will offer a fully body workout, not just your arms or legs, a rowing machine can be a wise investment. It’s time efficient for busy lifestyles only requiring a 20min workout and you’re done. Functional trainers  or complete home gyms (max 2 and max 5 are good recommendations) on the other hand can integrate heaps of different workouts into the one piece of equipment giving you more bang for your buck and depending on your needs, you’ll probably find you only need to invest in the one big ticket item with it. Complete home gyms offer the benefits of safe training by yourself at home with settings for muscle fatigue and muscle building.

5. Get Buff, Not Broke

Getting fit at home doesn’t need to come with a hefty price tag. It’s all about being smart with your purchases and looking for pieces that can offer multiple uses. Start small and work your way up and don’t invest in the big ticket items until you fully understand your fitness needs.

Lack of time, hectic work hours, distance from gym and ability can make gym memberships a huge waste of money for some people. By turning your own personal space into an at-home gym, you can be one step closer to feeling and looking great in the comfort of your home. Home gyms are a much better investment in your long term health and fitness. On average, a gym membership is around $750 per annum per person, with a family gym membership costing about $2,250 per annum. Statistics from health club memberships indicate the dropout rate is around 90%, which proves investing in your own gym equipment is the way to go for most. You don’t need all the bells and whistles to reach your fitness goals. With the right workout, consistency and your goals set and measured, you can do it all on a budget.

Author Bio

Jayde Ferguson writes for Orbit Fitness – the largest supplier of fitness equipment in Perth including all the at-home gym essentials. You can catch Jayde on Google+ to discuss this piece.

The Benefits Of A Tabata Timer

Happy New Year!

Welcome to 2014! This year we will have workplace tips for you to stay healthier at work, with Healthier Workplace WA and Livelighter but to get you started back into your 2014 exercise routine here is our first tip for the year to help you with your new year fitness resolutions!

The Benefits Of A Tabata Timer

If you’re interested in accelerating your rate of fat loss and really taking your fitness up to a higher level, you’ll want to consider doing a Tabata interval training workout.  Tabata is an ultra-intense form of interval training that will kick fat burning into high gear and challenge you like no other workout has ever done before.

When doing this protocol, you will alternate between periods of very intense exercise for 20 seconds and 10 second active ‘rest’ periods where you do very low intensity exercise to recover between your intervals.

Keep in mind that since this workout is so intense, it’s typically not the best choice for beginners who will typically find that they struggle to maintain the 20/10 work/rest interval time period.

Once you are at the fitness level where you can do this workout session however, then getting a Tabata timer will be in your best interest.

Let’s look at what a Tabata timer is and why it can help you move forward and see the results you’re after.

Keeps Your Intervals Tight

The first reason to use a Tabata time is because it’s going to help to ensure that your intervals are on the mark. If you end up taking just a little too long between your intervals (say you let your rest period go until you’re at the 20-30 second mark rather than the 10 second mark), you’re essentially ruining the results that you should have achieved from this form of workout session.

By using the timer, you’ll know exactly when it’s time to alternate between the hard and easy intervals.

Allows You To Focus On Maximum Effort

Next, the second big benefit to using a Tabata timer is the fact it will allow you to focus on giving a maximum effort during your workout session.

You won’t have to concern yourself with timing your intervals but rather, can focus on simply getting through the workout while pushing your body to the limit.

That is what Tabata is all about.

If you’re constantly monitoring the time, it’s impossible to focus 100% on maximum intensity.

So there you have the primary points to know about why you should consider using a Tabata timer. As you do your workouts, it’s definitely one thing that you will want to consider.

 

 

Overlooked Forms Of Cardio Training

As you go about designing your workout protocol, one thing that you’ll want to be keeping in mind is the variation of cardio that you’re choosing to do. Getting in some cardio training is a very wise move as you move through your workout program plan as cardio training will help to boost heart health and ensure that you maintain a slightly higher total calorie burn each day, making weight management easier.

This said, cardio activity does not have to involve you hopping onto the treadmill, bike, or elliptical on a daily basis and ‘doing time’. There are plenty of other variations of ways to get your cardio training in.

Let’s look at what a few of these are so that you can start adding them to your approach.

Recreational Sports

The very first way that you can get your cardio training in is through recreational sports activities. Whether you prefer soccer, volleyball, tennis, or some other sport, if you participate with a decent amount of intensity, this is a great way to get your cardio training in.

Because this variation of cardio also adds a social element into the mix, many people find that they enjoy it far more as well.

Bikram Yoga

Moving along, Bikram yoga is the second variation of cardio to be considering as you go about your program plan. Also referred to as hot yoga from time to time, this variation of yoga will definitely get you working up a sweat and maintaining an elevated heart rate.

It’s an excellent variation for those who want to enhance their flexibility, build muscle power and strength, while also getting cardiovascular benefits in as well.

Gardening

Finally, don’t overlook gardening.  If you are someone who loves to get outdoors and work in your yard, you can actually burn up a relatively decent amount of calories doing this, especially if you do it for a few hours.

While it won’t be an intense workout session like a Tabata workout would be, don’t discount the benefits it has to your health.

You’ll enjoy the time you spend in your yard and the added sunlight will also help to keep you healthy and feeling well.

So next time you’re dreading yet another machine-cardio based workout session, think otherwise. Get out and do something new and you’ll see even better results than you would have on the cardio equipment. For more ideas on how you can incorporate fitness into your day, check out LiveLighter as well.

 

What is the best exercise for weight loss – Cardio or Weights?

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Fitness by HIF Health Expert and Gabriel Method Fitness Coach Brian Killian

As a Fitness Coach for over a decade one of the most common reasons people turn up at my gym to train with me is to lose weight. With obesity becoming an ever increasingly and common problem, you want to

be sure your exercise is meeting your objective. Exercise for weight loss is an area in which I specialise in and it’s also an area where there’s much confusion.

It leads me to a question I get asked often:

What is the best exercise for weight loss, Cardio or Weights?

Before I answer the question let me give you an understanding of each type of exercise.

Cardio: often known as Aerobic Exercise it is defined as any exercise that increases the need for oxygen. In other words, any activity that makes you puff. Some of the more common examples are walking, jogging, swimming even dancing.

Weights:  often known as Strength Training, it is a type of physical movement where resistance is used with muscle contraction to induce an increase in strength and size of skeletal muscles. Examples of this are body building, weight lifting, gymnastics and even shot put and javelin throwing.

The answer to the question often surprises, but Weights will indeed contribute to more weight loss than Cardio.

Generally speaking any activity that elevates your heart rate and increases your demand for oxygen is Cardio.  Traditional steady-state cardio (think running a 5K, using the elliptical machine, or doing step aerobics) can be beneficial in terms of fat loss — at least for a while. But your body will adapt to any stress placed on it. Over time, the work required to, say, run a 5K will decrease as your fitness improves. Diminishing returns kicks in. What once took 20 minutes to burn X number of calories will take 30 minutes, and then 40 minutes and so on.

With weights, on the other hand, you can stave off this effect by varying your exercises to keep your body guessing. You can change things up by adding resistance, decreasing rest time, increasing the number of reps you do or changing the order of your exercises. All of these things prevent your body from hitting a plateau, boosting your ability to burn fat.

Lifting weights also increases your lean muscle mass, which further increases metabolism at rest. That means you’ll be burning more calories throughout the day. You can lose weight whilst you’re asleep even.

When a new client turns up to me and wants to lose weight I give them a prescription of Weights and Cardio, with an emphasis on the Weights and I recommend you do the same.

Warm regards, 

Brian Killian

eFit30 answers FAQ’s, How Often Should You Be Exercising?

One question that some people ask themselves as they go about their workout protocol is how often they should be exercising during the week. How much is enough – and is there such a thing as too much?

Exercise is something that you can get too much of if you aren’t careful because the body does take so long to recover from intense workouts that you’re doing.

But, if you structure your workout properly, you can definitely maintain a good level, see fat loss take place, and still stay energized all week long.

Let’s look at what you should know.

Strength And Pilates Studio Training

First you have your strength training or pilates training sessions.  These are designed to boost muscular strength and increase your total lean mass, so will be quite intense in nature.

If you perform exercises for all main muscle groups in each session you do (a full body workout set-up), you should be doing these two to three times per week for optimal results.

Cardio Training

To add to your strength training, cardio training is another key element of your workout program plan.  Cardio is a little more variable and can be done anywhere from twice per week up to four or five times depending on the intensity level.

Just remember that you must have at least one day off to rest from all forms of intense activity, so make sure that is in place between your strength training and cardio training.

Yoga Lessons

Finally, yoga is another form of activity that you may choose to include in your exercise plan.  Unless you’re doing Bikram yoga or power yoga, which can be more intense, you can perform yoga as often as you like as it can actually help you recover faster from the workouts that you’re doing.

Many people find that this serves as the perfect form of exercise to do between their other workout sessions.

So all in all, you should exercise a minimum of four times per week – two strength workouts and two cardio workouts, but can exercise up to six times per week, adding in some yoga and additional cardio sessions from there.

Just remember to listen to your body as you do this and if it’s asking for rest – allow it to rest. That is vital for overall good recovery.

 

Best Exercises For Firming And Toning Your Thighs

If you’re like many women out there, one particular area of your body that proves to be an ongoing trouble spot is the thighs.  As a woman, you do tend to store more body fat in this area of your body compared to other areas, so it’s natural that you would have a slightly harder time losing fat from this region.

That said, it isn’t impossible. If you can perform the right mix of exercises for your thighs, you can definitely see the results you’re after.

Let’s go over the best exercises that will slim your thighs in a hurry.

Lunges

For fast thigh firming results, you can’t beat lunges. Lunges are a great exercise that will work the quads, hamstrings, as well as the glutes, all while stimulating the core muscles as they contract to keep you balanced.

Lunges are great to perform walking or stationary – the choice is yours. Do them with your bodyweight or holding a set of dumbbells.

Squats

Second, also consider adding squats into the picture. Squats are going to be great for firming up your backside in a hurry as they are going to work every single muscle group in the lower body without fail.

When doing these, make sure that you squat as far down to the ground as possible to fully work the muscles.

Pause at the bottom and then come up to finish off the rep. Contrary to what you may think, squats will not make your legs larger, but rather make them look leaner. Remember that excess calories is what makes you get larger, not strength training.

Step-Ups

Step-ups are the third must-do exercise to have in your workout routine. The higher the step you step onto, the more you’ll work the back side of the leg while the lower the step, the more you’ll challenge your quads (front of the leg).

Keep this in mind as you design your program plan.

Step up onto the bench with one foot, pause at the top, and then lower back down to complete the rep.

Pilates

Finally, the last exercise to consider getting into place is pilates.  Pilates is a great leg strengthener and is going to be ideal for helping to build toned, lean legs without any muscular bulk.

Perform pilates classes three times per week to see optimal benefits.

So don’t let your thighs be a trouble spot any longer. Get these exercises in and you can start seeing results.

Start here with our free Pilates series or body weight workouts.