fitness is a huge passion of mine and a big part of my life. recently, i have committed myself to a fitness regime for gaining new muscle and toning it as well. i often research the workout routines of female bodybuilders to see how they gain and tone muscle. here are a few tips:
- you have to lift HEAVY. put your muscles through stress so they build muscle as a way to prepare for your next workout. heavy means you can lift no more than 12 reps of an exercise.
- total body workouts are the most effective for fat loss. see workouts for the ones i do.
- strength train BEFORE cardio.
- if you’re going to strength train, you HAVE TO FUEL your body! eat clean before and after.
I developed this document for a lady who wanted to start working out and losing weight. here it is to share with you!
A couple things to know:
- The greatest thing that will help you is to research about different workouts and nutrition plans that will work for you – your schedule, body type, height/weight, preferences, etc.
- Pinterest (the fitness section) has tons of great
- Try to work out at 3-4 days every week. Each of these workouts should have some form of strength training. Believe it or not, lifting weights is going to be the most important part of your workout program.
o Weights build muscle
o More muscle = more calories burned during the
o More calories burned = more weight loss!
- If you want to lose weight, cardio + weight lifting is going to do it quickest.
- If you want to lose weight even faster, your cardio should consist of interval training. Research shows that a short interval workout does WAYYY more for weight loss than a long, steady cardio session.
- Begin each workout with a short warm-up: walk/bike for 6-8 minutes or do 20 jumping jacks 3x followed by a few minutes of gentle stretching.
- Always do your strength training routine before cardio. This will ensure that you have all of the energy you need to get the most out of your workout.
Every other day, do some form of weight lifting routine. The most effective routine for burning fat is circuit training. This means performing 6-8 exercises back-to-back without a rest until the end. This will get your heart rate up, as well as work your muscles.
Example total-body circuit (you will need a pair of dumbbells – 8-10 lbs work well):
1. Squat to shoulder press (10 reps) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QcR7E5cQB_w
2. Burpee (10 reps) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zxe2dgTLaIE
3. Lunge pulse with bicep curl (10 reps each leg) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q0LJoDSZCGM
4. Mountain climbers (45 seconds) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ajhXDlQhFPw
5. Deadlift to upright row (12 reps) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QxVyQ8I5a3M
6. Wide-stance push-up with row (8 push-ups) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vpB-ad8ezFE
7. Plank (30 seconds) http://www.youtube.com/watchv=pSHjTRCQxIw
(REST 2 minutes) & Repeat 2-3x
Complete this work out 2x each week. Your goal is to be sweating and out of breath with tired and weak muscles! You can adjust the weight and reps to meet your abilities – the more you do it and as you get stronger, you will find it gets easier!
Tips for strength training:
- You cannot lose fat in just one specific area – ie, you will not lose belly fat by doing 1,000 crunches a day. Weight loss is a total-body transformation; hence, total-body workouts will work wonders.
- When you start trying to lose weight, do exercises that work major muscle groups. These include squats, lunges, pull-ups, push-ups, deadlifts, bent-over rows, tricep dips
- Once you are seeing results, you can incorporate more specific exercises to target problem areas. Just remember:
o There are tons of exercises for each muscle group –
research different exercises and create a routine to
o You need to lift heavy weight to make it effective.
You shouldn’t be able to complete more than 12
consecutive reps of any exercise.
- Don’t spend a ton of time doing abs – in order to see them you have to lose any fat that is covering the muscle first. Like I said, cardio and lifting is going to make that fat disappear wayyyy faster than 1,000 crunches will.
o At the end of your cardio workout do planks, bicycle
crunches, or mountain climbers to target your core –
no more than 5 minutes will do.
You can (and should!) do cardio as many days of the week that you can. Try to end every workout with at least 15-20 minutes of cardio. It doesn’t matter what you do – just get your heart rate up and get movin.
Different options for cardio:
- Walk (treadmill or outside)
- Run (treadmill or outside)
- Bicycle (stationary or outside)
- Spin (form of cycling)
- Stair climber
- Aerobics, step classes, zumba, fitness DVDs
- Jumping rope, jumping jacks, any form of consistent jumping
- The list goes on….. as long as your heart gets pumping for a while, you’re workin out.
Like I said before, interval training is by far the most effective form of cardio. There are a few options for workouts, but all are effective:
- 20 seconds all out, 40 seconds rest
- 20 seconds slow, 20 seconds moderate intensity, 20 seconds all out
- 30 seconds all out, 60 seconds rest
It’s up to you – try them out and see what you like best. Try to go at least 4 minutes before resting for a full minute and then starting again for another 4 minutes. Shoot for 20 minutes total.
When I am on the treadmill, I like to use distance to track when to switch between intensities. For example, I change my speed every tenth of a mile. Here is what it looks like:
- Walk at 3.8 mph for 0.5 miles
- 0.5 – 0.6: run at 6.8 mph
- 0.6 – 0.7: run at 8.0 mph
- 0.7 – 0.8: walk at 3.4 mph
I’ll repeat this slow, moderate, intense series for about 20 minutes and I get a great workout.
The greatest piece of advice for cardio: be creative! It can get boring and long doing the same thing over and over – change up the type of cardio you do often. Set goals for each work out… hit a certain number of minutes, miles, calories… anything to keep you going.
If you have any questions about anything in this workout plan, about additional resources, our about healthy nutrition and eating, don’t hesitate to ask! Remember a few tips:
- You will never regret a workout.
- Anything is better than nothing.
- You won’t see results in a day or even a week – but don’t give up. Every workout is a step closer to reaching your goal.
- You can’t out-exercise a bad diet – the majority of weight loss happens in the kitchen; exercise just makes it happen faster!