Exercise has many benefits. Along with improving your overall health, exercise increases bone density, boosts your mood, memory and your learning. But for some, that’s not enough. You want results and you want them fast. So, if you’re not getting the best results from your workout, start incorporating some (or all) of these tips into your workout routine and get the results you want!
1. Incorporate muscle-building exercises. Muscle cells works harder than fat cells and burn more calories. Muscle cells are dense (compact), and take up less space than fat cells, which can shave off inches from your waistline, hips and other areas. Did you know that regular weight training could boost your metabolism by 15%? That means that your body will burn more calories, even when you are at rest. What types of weight bearing exercises should you do? Think about traditional calisthenics like squats, lunges, burpees and pushups. Remember, too much cardio vascular exercises can actually shrink the size of your muscles.
2. Exercise in your target heart rate zone. Most people do not exercise at the right intensity level. The greater the exertion, the greater amount of calories you burn. Use this formula to calculate your target heart rate zones. 1.) Find your resting heart rate (RHR). 2.) Take 220 (maximum heart rate) – your age – RHR. 3.) Multiply by the % of intensity you want: fat burning zone is 60-75% and aerobic/cardio zone is 75-85%. 4.) Add back in your RHR and you have your zone. If you're not breathing hard, you're not working out hard enough. If you can read a magazine, newspaper or check email during your workout, you are not burning the calories that you could be.
3. Keep your workouts less than 60 minutes. After 60-minutes of exercise, your body releases cortisol, a hormone that prevents tissue growth and decreases muscle mass. An increase in cortisol can also lead to an increase in abdominal fat. Train your body to work smarter, not longer. Have a workout routine that incorporates strength training, cardio vascular training, balance, flexibility and core conditioning. The next time you go to the gym, be efficient, stop the chitchat and get on with your busy day.
To burn more calories during your workout, incorporate muscle-building exercises, increase your intensity and keep your workouts to less than 60-minutes.
Niccole Maurici, University Park mom of four and former certified personal trainer, is the co-founder and creator of the StrongestMom.com website and fitness videos, which promote values important to moms: encouragement, support, positive thinking, and dedication. To learn more visit our website strongestmom.com.