Even though diet makes up 80 percent of how we look and feel, we can’t forget the importance of exercise. As you already know, I am a certified master trainer, and I spend most of my time in my gym, either training clients or working out myself. I love to work out! Really, I do. There is no better feeling than how you feel after a great workout. Your body is made to move and to go through pushing and pulling, jumping, skipping, and working up a good sweat.
For optimal health, I say you need to aim for a good sweat five to six days a week. Just as with food and nutrition, I have tried countless workout methods and modalities over the last forty or so years, on myself as well as on others, and I have come to some important conclusions.
As you have learned, it is essential for you to build lean mass in order to increase your metabolic rate. The best and quickest way to build lean mass is by weight or resistance training. Many women are afraid of weight training, as they fear that they will become large or “bulky.” Some of my own clients express this fear. It is simply impossible for a woman to grow large muscle mass naturally. As we previously discussed, women have high levels of estrogen. Our bodies are naturally primed for reproduction, and that is why we carry more body fat and generally appear “softer” than men. In contrast, men produce more of the hormone testosterone, which is essential for muscle building. Due to this naturally occurring testosterone, it is much easier for men to get “big” and lean.
You will alternate between upper-body and lower-body workouts to give your muscles a chance to recover for at least twenty-four hours before that same muscle is worked again. On some days you may choose a full-body workout, which is another way to slightly increase your caloric burn over just training one body part.
Studies show that interval training burns more fat than slow or steady-state cardio. In fact, not only do you torch more fat during your high-intensity training (HIIT) workout, but your metabolism also stays elevated for as much as sixteen to eighteen hours afterward.
One way to incorporate interval training is to combine your weight training with cardio bursts in between sets. I use a method that was developed by my partner William Del Sol and me; the Fusion, which gets you great results in no time. Through this method, you “super spike” your metabolism and build lean, sexy muscle at the same time, in quick, fun workouts. You will not believe your eyes when you see the results that you will achieve. This program is wonderful, because it can be done anywhere by anyone at any time! The Fusion method can be done at any fitness level from the novice exerciser to the advanced athlete, with stunning results. Since you only need a few dumbbells or resistance bands, you can do it anywhere.
Before you start any workout program, it is important that you get clearance from your doctor or licensed health-care practitioner. You should start each workout with a warm-up and stretching. This will get the blood flowing to your muscles, and you will be ready for the more challenging part of the workout, without the risk of injury or strain.
As you do the workouts, perform at least twelve to fifteen reps of each exercise for three sets. If you are looking to really build mass, lower your rep range to no more than ten reps and lift as heavy as possible. To tone up and slim down, go for a higher rep range with a weight that you can handle. Personally, I do up to twenty repetitions per set. The last three reps should become fairly difficult to finish. If they are too easy, you need to add more weight so that you keep challenging your muscle tissue.
After each set, you will do a “cardio burst” for thirty seconds. I use a Gymboss timer to count down my cardio interval. You can order your own Gymboss timer at www.unnigreene.com.
Whenever you are weight training, be mindful of your posture. Always think of standing erect with knees slightly bent, abs and core engaged, and your shoulder blades retracted so that your chest is open. I want you to use full range of motion in each exercise, meaning that you should fully extend your arms on the lengthening or eccentric part of the exercise, and always squeeze on the concentric part or “finish.” Pause as you contract your muscle fully for a count of two, and then slowly bring the weight back to starting position.
Remember; always start every workout with a five-minute warm-up and stretching sessions. Gather your equipment, a towel, and some water to stay hydrated. Then do three to four sets of at least twelve but no more than twenty reps of everything. The last three reps should be challenging. Pick a weight that’s heavy enough!
If you want more information, or to schedule a personal consultation with us at our gym, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or text to 786.488.6842.