Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Calling All Walkers, Joggers and Runners

(And Cardio Queens and Kings)

Remember the old saying “You can always tell a (fill in the blank) girl. But you cannot tell them much!”

Walkers, joggers and runners fall into the same category. Some people love it and even become addicted to it. Jogging and running, in particular, release endorphins in the brain that stimulate feelings of pleasure. Just like nicotine or sex.  

Far be it from me to try to deprive anyone of pleasure. And they are all good for you. You’ll have a hard time convincing me that (almost) any kind of movement isn’t better than lying or sitting around watching “Dancing with the Has Beens” eating KFC.   If you walk, jog or run outside, all the better.  You’re moving. You’re working your heart muscle and your respiratory system. You’re using your muscles. And you’re burning calories.

But if you are walking, jogging or running to burn FAT, you may be wasting your time.  The same holds true for treadmills, stationary bikes, elliptical and Stairmasters.

Your body has a priority system for burning fat and steady-state cardio is nowhere near the top of the list. Steady-state cardio is moving at the same low speed or same level of exertion for extended periods of time. For example: If you walk or run on a treadmill at a slow to moderate speed at a steady pace you will burn calories but burn little or NO fat for at least thirty minutes! How much free time do you have for your workouts? The less time you have available to train the more you need to prioritize your fat loss.

Alwyn Cosgrove co-authored nine best-selling fitness books and is a member of the Nike Performance Council. Alwyn co-owns Results Fitness in Santa Clarita, California, which was named one of the top ten gyms in America by Men’s Health and Women’s Health magazines. Alwyn’s formal academic studies are in Sports Performance at West Lothian College and an honors degree in Sports Science a West Lothian College, the University of Liverpool.
Alwyn breaks it down this way:
Here are your body’s priorities for fat loss in descending order of importance:

1.     Nutrition. You cannot out train a poor diet. You have to create a calorie deficit and get sufficient amounts of protein, carbs and good fats.

2.     Forms of exercise that burn calories and promote increase in muscle mass and elevate metabolism-Strength training

3.     Forms of exercise that burn calories and elevate metabolism-High Intensity Aerobic Training

4.     Forms of exercise that burn calories but don’t necessarily promote increased muscle mass or elevate metabolism-Low Intensity (Steady State) aerobic Training

Given the fact that most people have a limited amount of time to devote to their workouts, your time should be broken down this way:

§  If you are working out for 3-4 hours a week, you should focus solely on resistance training
§  If you are working out 4-6 hours a week, you should focus on both resistance training and high intensity anaerobic interval training
§  If you are working out 6-8 hours a week, you could then include high intensity aerobic training (running)
§  Only if you are working out more than 8 hours a week should you include low intensity aerobic training (walking/jogging)

If you are trying to lose "belly fat" go back and read what Johns-Hopkins Medicine says in yesterday's article.

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