Tag Archives: metabolic circuit

6 Ways to Sculpt Your Abs

19 Jul

Everyone wants a lean, muscular physique and six-pack abs.  And, although there are lots of people and products making lots of promises, you can do all the abs exercises you want but, until you lose that layer of fat covering your midsection, the only thing you’ll accomplish is strengthening the muscles hidden beneath the fat.

Here are 6 tips to help reveal your abs:

  1. Burn fat.  Doing lots of abs exercises won’t help you lose fat (I once read that it takes 250.000 crunches to burn one pound of fat!).  To lose fat, you’ll need total-body strength training, a certain type of cardio called interval training, and a diet that is consistent with your goals.
  2. Lift weights.  Every time you exercise, you should aim to work every major muscle group.  Research shows that the metabolic impact of strength training persists for up to 48 hours, post-workout.  The more lean muscle you build, the greater the number of calories you burn, at rest.
  3. Keep moving.  Turn your strength training workout into a metabolic circuit by minimizing rest intervals between sets.  Alternate between upper- and lower-body exercises, or push-pull exercises.  Increase the intensity even more by mixing in cardio exercises like step-ups, jumping jacks, running in place, or jumping rope.
  4. Work your entire core.  Don’t limit your focus to your abs.  Find exercises that work your entire core, from shoulders to hips.  We really like to incorporate planks – 4-point, 3-point, side, and several other variations – into our core work.  Rotational exercises, using kettlebells and medicine balls, tend to be higher-intensity and are also effective core exercises.
  5. Add intervals.  As discussed in a previous article, High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is one of the best ways to burn fat.  HIIT involves alternating intervals of high- and low-intensity activity.  HIIT works equally well, whether the type of exercise is resistance/strength training or cardio.  The key is to go hard during the high-intensity portion of the interval, and keep moving, even during the low-intensity portion of the interval.
  6. Eat smart.  If you really want to get a ripped six-pack, doing the right abs exercises is only part of the equation.  Avoid (or, at least minimize) foods like white grains, pasta, fruit juices, and other processed, high-sugar foods. Ultimately, excess blood sugar gets stored as fat.  Make sure your carbs are whole grain and high-fiber.  Increase your protein consumption by eating more lean meats (chicken, turkey, fish), eggs, and dairy (milk, Greek yogurt), and add a daily protein shake to your diet.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

Train Like an Athlete for a Better Physique

5 Jul

Training with a focus on performance, instead of aesthetics, will help you build a lean, functional body that will feel better, look better, and perform better.

Here are a few tips:

Lift Heavy.  Instead of using weight that you can easily lift, push, or pull, opt for heavier weight that challenges you for your desired number of repetitions, each set.  Your last few repetitions, of your last set, should be a struggle, if you can complete them at all.

Keep Moving.  Turn your workout into a metabolic circuit by reducing rest intervals between sets.  Proceed from one exercise to the next, allowing as little rest as you can manage while maintaining proper form and technique.

Train Movements, Not Muscles.  Incorporate exercises like burpees (squat thrusts), medicine ball slams, dumbbell squat to press, and jumps to your regimen.  Try to avoid machines and use free weights whenever possible, since machines tend to restrict movement to a very narrow range-of-motion.

Upgrade Your Diet.  Eliminate (or at least reduce) sugars from your diet, and make protein and produce the centerpiece of each meal.  Avoid big meals, instead aiming for 5-6 small meals and snacks throughout the day — advance planning and preparation is the key.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

6 Ways to Sculpt Your Abs

5 Mar

abs%20man%20and%20woman[1]Everyone wants a lean, muscular physique and six-pack abs.  And, although there are lots of people and products making lots of promises, you can do all the abs exercises you want but, until you lose that layer of fat covering your midsection, the only thing you’ll accomplish is strengthening the muscles hidden beneath the fat.

Here are 6 tips to help reveal your abs:

  1. Burn fat.  Doing lots of abs exercises won’t help you lose fat (I once read that it takes 250.000 crunches to burn one pound of fat!).  To lose fat, you’ll need total-body strength training, a certain type of cardio called interval training, and a diet that is consistent with your goals.
  2. Lift weights.  Every time you exercise, you should aim to work every major muscle group.  Research shows that the metabolic impact of strength training persists for up to 48 hours, post-workout.  The more lean muscle you build, the greater the number of calories you burn, at rest.
  3. Keep moving.  Turn your strength training workout into a metabolic circuit by minimizing rest intervals between sets.  Alternate between upper- and lower-body exercises, or push-pull exercises.  Increase the intensity even more by mixing in cardio exercises like step-ups, jumping jacks, running in place, or jumping rope.
  4. Work your entire core.  Don’t limit your focus to your abs.  Find exercises that work your entire core, from shoulders to hips.  We really like to incorporate planks – 4-point, 3-point, side, and several other variations – into our core work.  Rotational exercises, using kettlebells and medicine balls, tend to be higher-intensity and are also effective core exercises.
  5. Add intervals.  As discussed in a previous article, High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is one of the best ways to burn fat.  HIIT involves alternating intervals of high- and low-intensity activity.  HIIT works equally well, whether the type of exercise is resistance/strength training or cardio.  The key is to go hard during the high-intensity portion of the interval, and keep moving, even during the low-intensity portion of the interval.
  6. Eat smart.  If you really want to get a ripped six-pack, doing the right abs exercises is only part of the equation.  Avoid (or, at least minimize) foods like white grains, pasta, fruit juices, and other processed, high-sugar foods. Ultimately, excess blood sugar gets stored as fat.  Make sure your carbs are whole grain and high-fiber.  Increase your protein consumption by eating more lean meats (chicken, turkey, fish), eggs, and dairy (milk, Greek yogurt), and add a daily protein shake to your diet..

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

Train Like an Athlete for a Better Physique

24 Feb

fit_-_man_and_woman-e1362931185920[1]Training with a focus on performance, instead of aesthetics, will help you build a lean, functional body that will feel better, look better, and perform better.

Here are a few tips:

Lift Heavy.  Instead of using weight that you can easily lift, push, or pull, opt for heavier weight that challenges you for your desired number of repetitions, each set.  Your last few repetitions, of your last set, should be a struggle, if you can complete them at all.

Keep Moving.  Turn your workout into a metabolic circuit by reducing rest intervals between sets.  Proceed from one exercise to the next, allowing as little rest as you can manage while maintaining proper form and technique.

Train Movements, Not Muscles.  Incorporate exercises like burpees (squat thrusts), medicine ball slams, dumbbell squat to press, and jumps to your regimen.  Try to avoid machines and use free weights whenever possible, since machines tend to restrict movement to a very narrow range-of-motion.

Upgrade Your Diet.  Eliminate (or at least reduce) sugars from your diet, and make protein and produce the centerpiece of each meal.  Avoid big meals, instead aiming for 5-6 small meals and snacks throughout the day — advance planning and preparation is the key.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

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