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The myth that long bouts of cardiovascular work (such as distance running) is the best activity for removing unwanted fat is a difficult one to overcome. Talk to anyone who has lost weight as a result of training for a marathon and you’ll be hard-pressed to convince them that anything shorter or easier could possibly work as well or, dare I say, better.
Thankfully, lots of folks who once believed otherwise are finally discovering, and admitting, that cardio is not KING when it comes to getting lean and strong - something I’ve been teaching and proving to my clients for many years.
Okay, so, before I dig my heels in here, let me say for the record that I am not trying to talk anyone out of training for a marathon or suggesting that anyone necessarily quit their running program. My real goal is to demonstrate that there is a simpler, more effective way to shed body fat and, thank heaven, I’m not the only one screaming from the roof tops, “Distance running is not the best way!”
While cardio certainly plays a key role in body fat loss and maintenance, experts are slowly but surely unveiling the truth - that too much cardio can actually hurt your chances of losing unwanted body fat.
Richard A. Winett, Ph.D., publisher of Master Trainer explains, “Excessive cardio will interfere with your body’s ability to recover from high-intensity strength training. If you engage in two or three proper strength training workouts per week, a good rule of thumb is no more than three 30-minute cardio sessions per week at no higher than 60-70% of your maximum heart rate. Any more than this and you risk cannibalizing muscle tissue for energy. Muscle makes the body a more efficient fat-burning machine and high intensity, long-duration aerobics can sabotage all that hard-earned muscle.”
Interval Training Is Where It’s At - Like Dr. Winett, more and more experts are confirming what body builders have known for years. Strength training, combined with proper nutrition and short, consistent bouts of aerobic activity, like my WAVE cardio program, are the key ingredients in losing unwanted body fat.
Catch The Wave – A great replacement for hours of long, boring cardio is to use what’s known as interval training (I call it WAVE training, because it is done in peaks and valleys.) Here’s a quick way to try it out for yourself: Begin with any aerobic activity (walking, treadmill, biking, swimming, stair mill, Wii, elliptical, jump rope – anything that elevates your heart rate) and work in 3-minute “waves.” Start out at a moderate level for 2 minutes, then, every 3rd minute, work at a level you consider challenging. Keep repeating this pattern of moderate work followed by challenging work, until you have reached the 19th minute. Then, for that last minute (especially those final 15 seconds) work at a level you consider your hardest for the whole routine – and YOU’RE DONE!
Here are just a few of the benefits of doing this type of workout.
• It’s Short and Sweet – Who wants to spend hours getting fit? Besides, who has the time?
• Burns Calories After You Finish – Doing interval work guarantees that you will burn more calories because it creates what is known as an “after burn” of calories, meaning you are still burning calories at a higher than normal rate, even after you finish. This effect is thought to last anywhere from 3 to 24 hours after your workout.
• Less Wear and Tear – The shorter the workout, the easier it is on joints, vertebrae, back, shoulders and more. Less work means less risk of injury, less boredom and less drop-out.
If you are interested in losing body fat (like 98% of us) and you really want to save time and effort, WAVE is the way to go.
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About the Author:
Dianne Orwig is a success coach, motivational speaker, fitness trainer, and founder of LivingFit Online™, a fitness program that has helped thousands of men and women completely transform their bodies and live healthier, happier lives though her less-is-better approach.
Get a FREE copy of Dianne's newest book, The Secret Laws of Weight Loss Success - just go to: http:/
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