Research proves it.
In fact, in a head-to-head study, at our local University of Glamorgan, sports scientists found that short intense workouts helped subjects burn more belly fat – while cardio didn’t work at all.
I am an elite personal trainer and sports scientist and have something very exciting that you need to know, I have been working with normal people (like you) for over 15 years, and I must say you may be missing a trick ….or even two.
By fixing these two parts of your programme you could start seeing results again. In this article I will share the two effective and important changes I have made to many of my clients programmes over the last 15 years. I use these strategies to help get real results for real people like you.
“We do more of the stuff we like and less of the stuff we don’t like as life goes on.” Wouldn’t you agree? It’s our prerogative! Isn’t it?
There are two thing lots of you have in common. Firstly, you are avoiding the tough stuff and doing too much of the easy cardio and secondly you are not doing any intense strength training.
What do I mean? …
If you are like some of my clients were when we met, you may not be working at a high enough intensity and are doing too many hours of SLOW boring cardio. STOP. PLEASE.
Combine this slow boring cardio with the fact you probably don’t do intensive strength training. This will lead to increasing body fat stores and decreasing muscle stores – the opposite of what you want.
I heard slow cardio is better for being in the fat burning zone?
This is technically correct but very misleading. You will burn more fat while exercising but you will expend less energy overall, compared to high intensity intervals. Overall energy expenditure is key.
Your ultimate aim is obviously improvement. That’s not complicated, that’s why you train your ass off. So how come you have not seen any real results in years?
There are two common things in my opinion:
- Too Much SLOW BORING CARDIO!
- No Intense Strength Training
Improving Your Fitness – The easy way!
The measure of how fit you are is called your aerobic capacity or VO2Max. If you have trained for a long time, your Vo2 Max will now only improve with high intensity training.
Training at intensities above 90% VO2max is one of the most potent routes to fitness improvements.
If you are already doing interval running, cycling or swimming, well done – join the club, what you need to do now is High Intensity Strength Training aka – circuit training.
Good circuit training combines the aerobic interval work (you may be already doing) and the muscle strength endurance work. This is commonly the most overlooked component of the amateur programme. It’s meant to be in there but it often left out in favour of slow cardio.
A typical circuit training workout will include exercises that improve your running and strength endurance, foot speed, core stability, lactate acid tolerance, VO2 max, all in one highly efficient workout.
Solutions and Options in the Swansea Area
OUR Boot Camp Circuit
6.30am-7.30am Mondays & Wednesdays & Fridays*– Treboeth, playfootball
7.00am-8.00am Tuesdays & Thursdays – Bishopston
£5 per session
*Fridays from April 1st 2011
DIY Circuit Training– make up your own circuit and do it at home or integrate some muscle endurance exercises to your next interval session on the bike, road or pool – press ups, squats, vertical jumps and lunges to name just a few.
Circuit Training or Exercise Classes– Various times, various locations in and aroundSwansea. Boxercise, body pump, muscle max to name a few.
Remember your system needs to be fuelled well when you are expecting your body to perform. If you do not fuel your system well you will struggle training in the “red zone”, just feeling ill if you are lucky, picking up injuries if you are unlucky.
*Please note* this type of training is not for people who want to be in their comfort zone, it hurts, it makes you feel a bit sick (that’s the lactic acid … gotta learn to love it!). It is higher risk too. You need to be in good physical condition – mobility, flexibility and core stability to lessen the risk of injury. *NOT FOR BEGINNERS*
It will however boost your overall fitness like crazy (VO2 Max) and ultimately your performance. Once or twice a week for 12 weeks would be enough to notice a difference; two and three times per week will change your body shape.
If you follow these two simple steps and cut out the slow boring cardio and fuel your system for the training. You will take a huge step towards improving your performance and seeing results. Trust me I’m a sports scientist!