Have you ever sat back and thought, "Man, I am at the gym 3 or 4 times every week and I just can't seem to burn any body fat!" Or have you wondered "Why am I still fat, I work out for an hour and a half every day" I will tell you why- it is because you don't know how to work out properly. It's probably not your fault, but you probably spend about an hour doing cardio and you probably hit the weights, spending most of your time doing arms (and skipping legs altogether) if you are a guy, or only doing leg curls because you are trying to shrink the size of your legs and hips if you are a woman. You have doing this for years and you have seen probably little or no results. For all those hours you wasted in the gym maybe you lost 4 pounds (or worse only gained five pounds). Hardly seems worth it, if you ask me. I am going to lay out some guidelines for you that will save you time in the gym, build a strong and vibrant body, increase your lean body mass and most of all- burn more body fat than you ever have before.
1st Reason - Because you are a "cardio queen".
Next time you are at the gym. Take a look around- where are all the obese people? Doing low intensity cardio, that's where. Raise your hand if you have seen a cardio "queen" in your gym? Every gym has them, no matter when you go to work out, whether it is 7 A.M. or 5:30 P.M. it seems like they are always there. Next time you see them at your gym take a closer look. Notice that their body composition fits into the technical category "skinny fat" or just "fat".
Doing all this cardio (although is good for cardiovascular health) is killing your body's potential to burn body fat. Long bouts of low intensity cardio or activity combined with lowering your caloric intake will kick you body into "starvation mode". Your body slows your metabolism to a crawl, and your body will fight to hold onto any body fat you have and burn muscle for energy. Thus, continuing the downward spiral to a lower metabolism and getting fatter and fatter.
Not only that, but you become more efficient the more cardio you do. This means if you are burning 200 calories when you first begin doing cardio six weeks later you might only be burning 160 calories. Same amount of work, less benefit- that sucks.
What can you do instead?
Cardio Intervals or even better cardio intervals interspersed with short bouts of resistance exercises.
2nd Reason - You do little muscles instead of large muscles.
When you hit the gym, you need to make the most of your time and workout with a goal in mind. If your goal is to lose weight- then lift like it. The exercises that build the most lean body mass and burn the most fat are compound movements that move large muscle groups. Don’t waste your time doing lateral raises and bicep curls. Use your time effectively with these exercises.
Lunge Cable Flys
SB chest presses
3rd Reason - Because you don't know any better.
Sit down with a trainer and get a program written out for yourself. You don't have to spend thousands of dollars on a full time trainer, just have them put a program together for you. If you are going to the time and effort into an exercise routine, make sure you are doing the right things for your goal. It is so much easier to stay motivated when you have a program to follow. Most people quit because they don’t have goals and direction. I see people who work out every single day hard, break a big sweat and never miss a workout – and they never change their body composition! All that work, effort and motivation and the end result – is nothing. It kills me to see this, all the motivation in the world and all they need is a proper program.
4th Reason - Because no matter what you always do your abs.
I can't be any more clear about this. You cannot spot reduce any single body part. Believe me, you are not burning fat off of your stomach by doing crunches until you are blue in the face. It is the ultimate waste of time. People will skip their entire resistance training portion of their workout- but God forbid if they skip crunches. Lift weights to burn your body fat off- if you are short on time, hit the weights and skip the crunches. I am serious. I know it feels good to have sore abs, but what are you really trying to accomplish? Your abs will begin to pop when you lose enough body from your stomach. Spend more time doing interval cardio and resistance training your entire body and you will see those abs sooner!
Diverge Personal Training Gym opened in 2008, yet it has had its roots within the Hillcrest neighborhood for over 10 years. The co-owners Brian White and Derek Heintz have been helping the community with their fitness goals since 1998.