We’re half way there – Jan has officially completed her 2nd week of my 4 Week Tone Up Challenge. Here’s her update along with my advice to get her through the home stretch with maximum shape up results – enjoy!
Week 2 Update from Jan:
“Wk #2 was great! I started going to Flywheel Spin and it was a ‘game changer.’ I have been spinning for years and love the energy and intensity of Flywheel more than than any class I’ve ever gone to. I worked out 5 days last week, but 1 day was without cardio. I added Brit’s Six Pack by Summer ab routine to all of my workouts last week (the plank and seated portions). I also did Brit’s Killer Legs workout after spin one night and was really in the hurt box – in a good way 🙂
So far I’ve been seeing some good results in terms of my muscle definition . My ‘six pack’ is on its way back for sure. I’m feeling leaner and just more fit in general. However, my knees and ankles are quite sore from all of the exercise, so I’ll need to be careful with them.” – Jan
Brit’s Advice for Jan:
Diet, Diet, Diet – Jan continues to get her 5 workouts in per week; however, slipping up on her diet could completely wash away her results. Many top resources claim that weight loss depends 80% on diet and 20% on exercise.
RICE – Jan has a history of knee and ankle injuries so it’s critical that Rests, Ice, Compress, Elevates her knees and ankles after workouts to keep inflammation down. However, you should ALWAYS refrain from exercise and get clearance from your doctor before starting any new workout regimen.
EVEN more discipline – Jan must push herself through the home stretch and commit to having a PERFECT last 2 weeks. That means every workout is completed with max effort and she sticks to her diet change ups 100%. Jan needs to give it all she’s got these last 14 days for maximum results.
Stay tuned for Jan’s 3 week report and special edition final report which will include a post challenge photo shoot of her smoking hot body, compliments of the lovely Anna Jane!
Hopefully you’ve found a workout that you absolutely LOVE , which is GREAT! I’m a firm believer that you’ll never consistently exercise until you find a workout that you TRULY enjoy and that makes you FEEL GOOD about your body! However, it’s critical that we constantly change up our workout routines. This doesn’t mean we have to give up the exercises we love, but we DO have to SPICE things up. So you are probably wondering…
WHY SHOULD I VARY MY WORKOUTS?
Avoid the plateau – Our bodies are super efficient – WE ARE STRONGER THAN WE THINK WE ARE! Once our bodies get use to a certain workout, they don’t require the same amount of energy (calories or strength) to get it done.
Prevent injury – If we do the same workouts all of the time, we run a significantly greater risk of chronic injuries (shin splints, etc.) Changing it up makes us work a variety of muscles and develop balanced strength and endurance.
Stay interested – New workouts keep us engaged in exercise. High mental and emotional engagement makes us more energized meaning we work harder and reach greater fitness levels.
BRIT’S 5 TIPS TO SPICE UP YOUR WORKOUT ROUTINE
Do 3 DIFFERENT types of cardio exercises every week – At a minimum, its most important to ensure that you get 3-30 minute cardio workouts in each week. However, you can maximize results by doing a variety of cardio workouts. For example: Monday – Treadmill, Wednesday – Elliptical, Friday – Boxing class.
Add Intervals – Intervals in terms of speed and incline/resistance are a great way to keep your body in the “cardio zone” and make sure you don’t get complacent. For example: when on the elliptical, ride at level 5 resistance for 3 min then level 10 resistance for 1 min, continue alternating for 30 min to 1 hr.
Power walk instead of running/jogging – Power walking is not as natural of a movement as jogging/running which means you have to engage more muscles. This is a great way to shock your body and even burn more calories – add light hand weights for an extra burn!
Switch up your resistance regimen – Instead of your usual back/biceps and chest/triceps workouts that you have been doing for years, change it up! Try the new TRX suspension training or an endurance body weight routine (like several posted on this site). Remember, if you do what you always done, you’ll get what you always got!
Get moving with a group – Working out with a group makes you push harder and leverage the energy of those around you. I encourage you to try some of my favorite group exercise classes: Title Boxing Club, Boot Camps (any one), Bar Method, Cycle classes and TurboKick.
Happy Sunday – I hope this posting finds you joyous and well! Today was a personal accomplishment because I officially became a certified indoor cycling instructor – woop woop! That said, I learned a lot of useful info about spin classes and calorie burn in general, so I just wanted to share some of these nuggets of wisdom with you guys. Hopefully, these facts will help you get the MOST out of your spin classes in the future 🙂
Turn up the resistance – speed DOES NOT equal calorie burn! In an effective cycle class, your legs should spin between 60-90 rotations per minute. If you are cycling way above this, turn your resistance up! When your legs are flying and your booty is bouncing around in the saddle, the bike is just propelling you and you are getting short changed on calorie burn…not a good look!
Don’t always trust the heart rate monitor. Several factors affect our heart rate including hydration, stress, diet, room temperature, etc. Therefore, just because your heart rate is in a certain zone, doesn’t necessarily mean you are working that hard. In many cases, heart rate monitors over count calories burned and you are deceived : (
Use a breath test. The bottom line is this, the harder you work, the more calories you burn. Therefore, use the breath test to quickly and effectively measure your exertion. Below are the 4 levels you should think about. If you are trying to burn as many calories as possible, strive to spend at least 20-30 minutes of your class in zones 3 and/or 4. You should never be back at Level 1 (breathing regularly) after the warm up.
L1 – Breathing regularly
L2 – Breathing fast, but comfortable
L3 – Breathing heavy, uncomfortable
L4 – Breathing very heavy, very uncomfortable – sucking air!
What is Body Pump?: A total body weight lifting class using a bar with weighted plates on each side. There are about 8-10 music tracks and each one has a choreographed weight lifting routine to work a specific muscle group (i.e. legs, chest, back, biceps, triceps, etc.). You can also buy the DVDs and equipment to do the class at home.
Commentary: I try to go to Body Pump at least once a week and when I do, I always feel tight and toned.The music is okay, def not amazing, but the workout is sick – it’ll get you right. I like this class because it’s an efficient TOTAL body strength workout. I appreciate that I don’t have go searching for a weight lifting routine for each body part, I can get it all at once – 1 hour and done. Also, you do a ton of reps for each muscle group so bulking up is not an issue. Instead, your muscles gain endurance and you even get a good sweat!
The Facts: Building lean muscle mass is not only great for your overall health and fitness, it’s also a great way to speed up your metabolism aka BURN FAT! Your Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) is the rate that your body burns calories while at rest. RMR is directly related to your ratio of lean body mass. This means, the more lean body mass you build, the more calories and fat you burn while at rest. So get your PUMP ON and get the FAT OFF 🙂
Resistance training has been perhaps the most under emphasized component of the comprehensive weight loss program. – Paula Besson MEd
Brit’s beverage epiphany: About this time last year, I had just finished working out and as I was leaving the gym, as usual, I bought a Gatorade. For some reason, this day I read the nutrition facts: 200 CALORIES IN 1 BOTTLE?!?! Geez, I just rode the elliptical for 45 minutes and I burned 450 calories. So drinking this Gatorade basically means I’m going to wipe out almost half of my work out! From that moment on I decided – “I’m OFF Gatorade, yall can keep those.” As a matter of fact, I’m done “drinking” calories. If I have to budget my calories, I’d much rather spend them on eating some good food – AMEN?
The facts: You have to burn 3,500 calories more than you consume to legitimately lose 1 pound. The drinks on my “BAD LIST” carry anywhere from 90-220 calories, so if you consume about 3 a day, you could pack on an extra 600 calories! That equals about 1 whole hour of moderate/high intensity cardio at the gym! Or potentially an extra pound every week, assuming you don’t burn it off. Is it really worth it?
Commentary: Below is a list that I put together for myself to help me weed out “bad drinks.” I kept it realistic and included some alcohol and juice options on the “GOOD LIST” even though they aren’t calorie free. At the end of the day, you have to ask yourself, “What do I want more, this Dr. Pepper or my long term fitness goals?” Just making simple adjustments to your daily habits, like committing to only “GOOD LIST” drinks, can help you drop quick pounds. Try it out and see for yourself because you work too hard to let your drinks weigh you down 🙂