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walking weight loss

If one is interested in shedding a few pounds, walking and weight loss go hand in hand. Walking is a great way to lose weight naturally, plus it also increases the body’s heart rate which will allow for the burning of more calories.

Walking at a Slow, Steady Pace

Beginners can start a new exercise program by walking regularly at a slow, steady pace. Walking for 30 minutes is better than no exercise at all. Calories don’t always have to be burned by running. Everybody needs to start somewhere. Walking and weight loss are also perfect for people who have injuries that may get further aggravated by more vigorous exercise.

Picking up the Pace

After about two to four weeks of walking regularly at a steady pace, it’s time to pick up the pace a bit. Increase the walking speed a little bit. The easiest way to do this is by using a treadmill. If the use of a treadmill isn’t readily available, just try walking quicker. One way to track walking speed without the use of gym equipment is by walking a certain distance at the slow and steady pace, then trying again at a quicker pace in order to beat the previous time it took to achieve the same distance.

Adding Intervals

Intervals are simply different speeds and intensities of exercise. Walking at a pace of 3.0 miles per hour for 60 seconds, followed by walking at a pace of 4.0 mph for 30 seconds is an example of walking intervals. More calories will be burned than if one were to keep a slow, steady pace for 60 seconds. Faster exercise helps increase the heart rate and an increased heart rate will result in more calories being burned. The more calories that are burned, the more weight can be lost.

Increasing Resistance

Increasing resistance will also aid in more calorie burning. Adding ankle weights is a way to increase intensity. More ways to add resistance include walking on uneven surfaces or walking up hills. Uneven surfaces include any kind of surface that isn’t flat, such as pavement. Grass, sand and gravel are great surfaces to walk or run on to increase resistance.
Gym equipment such as ellipticals and treadmills will have speed and resistance settings that can be changed with ease during walking workouts.

Walking and weight loss can go together. People don’t have to do fancy cardio dances or hours of running to lose weight. Walking burns calories too and that’s what people need to do in order to lose weight.

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weight loss success
Ensuring calories are below maintenance level can be tricky because the number of calories required varies individually by genetics, metabolism, and activity levels. There is a simple way that each individual can determine their own calorie needs – keep a food log. Keeping a food log can be as simple as writing down everything eaten in a day, or as complicated as calculating food amounts and associated calories, fat, or other nutrients.

Write down everything consumed in a day, including drinks. Once the number of calories consumed each day is known, they can be incrementally reduced to a level which allows for a healthy weight loss of one to two pounds per week, an approximately 500 to 1000 calorie per day deficit.

Cardiovascular Exercise – Putting the Fitness in Fat to Fit

The second element of long-term weight loss is cardiovascular exercise. Exercise that can be maintained at a moderate intensity level for a minimum of 30 minutes helps burn additional calories and is recommended for health benefits beyond weight loss, such as lower blood pressure, decreased cholesterol levels, and increased bone density.

Cardio exercise is beneficial from a health perspective and makes people feel good, but those hoping to lose weight should realize that exercise is not the most efficient means of creating a calorie deficit. A common assumption is that short duration of moderate exercise burns many calories.

In reality, an intensity level achievable by a typical out-of-condition person will burn a maximum of 150 to 200 calories in 30 minutes. It is far simpler and less time consuming to avoid eating 200 calories per day than it is to burn those same calories in exercise.

Weight Training Means Less Fat, More Fit

The final element of long-term weight loss success is weight training. It may seem counter-intuitive to weight train while attempting to lose weight, but weight training has been shown to improve fat loss while maintaining metabolically-active, calorie-burning muscle. People who weight train while losing weight lose more fat, and some studies have show that they lose more unhealthy abdominal fat. Weight training also has the additional benefits of increasing strength and boosting self-esteem.

Putting it All Together

Once a person is regularly doing each of these healthy behaviors, weight loss should be monitored frequently, but no more frequently than once a week. The week-long time frame is great for showing progress and allowing those wanting to transition from fat to fit to make adjustments to diet or exercise and ensure continued progress. As the body adapts to fewer calories and more exercise, adjustments will be necessary to continue to progress in weight loss, or fitness levels.

Going from fat to fit is not easy, but with vigilance and determination, anyone can lose fat and become a fitter, healthier person.

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resistance training
Resistance training is by no means only for professional bodybuilders or weightlifters looking to gain weight, though this is a common exercise misconception that has persisted for some time. Instead it has been proven a safe and effective method for achieving a desirable body composition, as well as promoting an individual's overall health and wellness for men and women of any age. Resistance training has been linked to numerous positive effects including benefits in strength, posture, and flexibility.

In addition, it boosts the immune system and improves cardiovascular health. It is frequently overlooked by those seeking to lose weight or reduce body fat, but in actuality, resistance training is far more effective at achieving these goals than it is given credit for, and is even superior to basic aerobic exercise methods.

Resistance Training Explained

The basic structure of resistance training typically consists of a series of repetitions between six and 12, followed by a short period of rest. This operates on very different principles than those of aerobic activity which utilizes a consistent state of an elevated heart rate . The traditional method is to use free weights, or dumbbells, but most modern gyms contain a variety of alternatives. The preset machines are an easier and quicker method of teaching one the basic movement that should be followed and as such is an effective introduction to weight training which can avoid injuries. Another option is to use cables. These can range from simple elastic bands, that can be wrapped around a pole or stepped on while performing the motions, to a complex setup of pulleys and cables that many modern gyms offer.

The advantage of cables is the superior range of flexibility they offer over machines, and as such they are ideal for complex whole-body movements and warm-ups. Free weights, on the other hand, offer the least restricted range of motion and the most comprehensive expanse of resistance, but at the same time they can lead to a higher potential for injury if performed incorrectly, so a good tip is to start light and slowly increase weights as the motions become easier. Although an ideal advanced regimen would incorporate all three methods, any option is an effective way to burn fat and improve wellness while avoiding the potential joint injuries associated with long bouts of running or biking.

A Problem with Many Current Weight Loss Programs

The fact that so many individuals insist on the use of low intensity aerobic exercise to achieve their goals represents a flaw in the information available to them, a flaw that must be amended in order to achieve the results one desires. One reason why such cardio is so widely advocated is the ease with which it can be performed. It is often true of human nature that one is more likely to succeed at a task that requires minimal effort when compared to one that is difficult. For this reason, low intensity aerobics are advanced as a way to begin exercising, an initiation of sorts. The dilemma is that few people are aware of the moment when it is no longer effective and continue to exercise the same way with few results. This often leads to a lack of motivation to persist and thus constitutes a failure in the exercise regimen.

Ideally, one must continually increase the difficulty of their activity in order to keep progressing. This is due to the body's ability to adapt to the pressures placed on it and respond accordingly. Thus, as time progresses, one's physical activity must increase just to continue to elicit the same response it once did. Eventually the time one must spend engaged in such activity becomes almost counterproductive and as few calories will be burnt by the activity in question as by doing nothing. This is especially true when considering the stress that is placed on the joints in contact, potentially leading to pain in the knees and back.

There is an easier solution; the calories burned - and thus the success of an exercise session - are based on the total energy expenditure. This is calculated, not just by the duration of the session but the intensity as well. It is for precisely this reason that the results of resistance training far outweigh those of conventional steady-state aerobic exercise.