Archive for Wednesday, January 6, 2010

5 Questions: New year new you

Fitness club manager gives tips on exercise

Ashli Bowman, manager at Unlimited Fitness.

Ashli Bowman, manager at Unlimited Fitness.

January 6, 2010

Ashli Bowman, manager at Unlimited Fitness, discusses different ways people can stick to their resolution to shed a few pounds in the New Year.

Q: What tips do you have for people who want to work out more in 2010?

A: Set goals. Why do you want to get into shape? Is it to run a marathon or just play with your grandkids without getting winded? Once you have a goal in mind, write it down and put it on the refrigerator. Tell family and friends your goals to help you stick to it. Figure out what you need to hold you accountable; a workout partner, prepaid sessions with a personal trainer, a friendly wager with friends, etc.

Q: Have you noticed people doing too much as far as working out when they initially begin exercising?

A: Most people think they can work out like they did when they were twenty. They over train, get very sore, and begin finding excuses to stop. You didn’t get out of shape over night; you aren’t going to get back into shape over night either.

Q: Is there a certain time of day that is better for people to exercise?

A: Research supports that working out in the morning is a little more productive for those wishing to burn calories. Exercise boosts metabolic rate, so the earlier you get the motor revved up in the morning the more calories you will burn throughout the day. But, the most important thing is scheduling a time that works in your schedule and making it an appointment you cannot skip.

Q: Is it better to eat before or after working out?

A: This is a tough one as there are many factors to consider. The most simplistic view is: If you want to lose weight, you need to burn more calories than you consume. Now, let’s assume you are working out in the morning and decide to skip breakfast. In the twelve hours between supper and breakfast you may have burnt 1,100 calories. Then you complete a 400-calorie workout driving the deficit to 1,500 calories. Your body is going to go into starvation mode and your metabolism will slow down. This is the polar opposite of what you are shooting for. Ideally you will avoid big swings in calories either in consumption or expenditure.

Q: Why do some people have trouble sticking with the resolution?

A: Frustration. People have unrealistic expectations and don’t think long term. Your health is constantly in flux. It is important to think of exercise not as punishment or a chore, but rather an investment in your future. Being active helps all aspects of our bodies to operate more efficiently, including our brains. Thirty minutes of your time three times a week is all you may need to add years to your life. An hour and a half out of 168 hours for ten or fifteen more years with your family and friends sounds like a no-brainer to me.

Just remember to not expect an immediate weight loss. People become so discouraged when they see a slight weight gain when beginning their new workout program, when actually, gaining weight during those first couple of weeks is completely normal. Stick with your workout plan, eat a healthy diet, and those results will begin showing and you’ll be on your way to a new you in the New Year.

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