So you wanna get fit, huh? You’ve come to the right place, but now you have a concern.
“I have so little time to commit to working out, how can I possibly get in shape and stay in shape with such a packed schedule? I want something that’s not only quick, but works!”
Oh boy, have we got a present for you.
In fact, it’s a common myth that you need to hit the gym for an hour, three or even four days a week to stay fit. It’s what works for athletes, but not everyone wants to be athlete. Some of us just want to feel better in the morning, have some pep in our step, lose weight, gain muscle, and maybe live a little longer to boot. For that, we can afford to tone it down a little bit and still make excellent gains in our health. Tone down how far, you ask?
…Two half-hour sessions a week. That’s right. Just that much can make a huge difference in your health and well-being. Anyone can set aside that much time for their well being, and that means anyone can use this option to stay fit for life.
How does it work? It’s simple: some exercise is better than no exercise, by a lot, but even a workout that’s thirty minutes a day, two days a week is 88% as effective as a normal three-day program at burning off fat, building muscle, and revving up metabolism. Says who? — A study by Tufts University that tracked hundreds of older adults and the effect of exercise on their bodies. In only 8 weeks of exercising twice a week, older Americans, on average, lost 4 pounds of fat and gained 2.2 pounds of muscle. That’s a drastic change, considering the only thing they did differently was that workout– they didn’t even diet…You know at The Fitness Clinic we don’t say ‘diet’ – so can you imagine if they paired this workout regimen with a food plan? You’d have your own ultimate personal fitness plan…
So – what would these short workouts look like? Well, first, they would need to contain all the components of a normal workout: cardio, a warm-up, strength training, and a cool down. Since we have to compress all that into just half an hour, lets make our cardio a warm-up for the strength training, and make a typical workout look something like this…
1.) Cardio Warm-Up — 10 minutes
This has to be a full-body warm-up, since we’ll transition directly into moderate strength training; so consider a 5 minute run, 3 minutes of jumping jacks, resting as necessary, and then 2 minutes of burpees or up-downs in sets of 10 with 10 second rests. These will get your heart rate up, as well as engage your whole core, including your arms. This particular plan is rather intensive, so if you’re older or have any medical concerns, in consultation with your physician and one of our certified personal trainers, feel free to swap any of these out for another movement that accomplishes the same objective. The Fitness Clinic helps with that (in fact, there are over thirty years of success stories to consider).
2.) Strength Training — 15 minutes
This time might be spent performing bodyweight squats, pull-ups, crunches and push-ups; the kings and queens of this segment. These four exercises hit every muscle in the body, and can be done in a short amount of time, too. A good strength segment can look a bit like this:
• Pull-ups. Try to start by doing anywhere from 5 to 10. If you’re just starting out, you likely can’t quite do that on your own, but no problem, our facility contains a number of machines and accessory equipment that can help. Remember, there are a myriad of back exercises we can consider here, and almost all can be swapped or adapted depending on your needs and preference.
• Bodyweight Squats. Try to do at least 20, but make certain you have good form! See our professionals if you’re unsure of your technique, or if you feel your form breaks down as you get tired – great form is vital to get the most from the exercise and to avoid injury and stay motivated and secure.
• Crunches. Crunches are simple enough; just do 10 or 15 here. We might start you with planks or various slides instead, so if crunches don’t work for you always feel free to substitute other ab exercises, and we can help you choose these as well.
• Push-ups. Aim for 15 to 20, and yep, there are a ton of variations to choose from here, too.
Do these exercises in order, from start-to-finish in a single cycle, preferably without rest – but we may have to build up to that, and that’s just one more reason to work with a qualified fitness trainer. Now take 30 seconds to a minute to catch your breath before starting it over back at the top. I know that doesn’t seem like much rest, but don’t worry, if you can complete this cycle, it’s designed so some muscles rest while other muscles work enabling you to step up the pace.
The advantage of cycling these workouts instead of focusing on them one at a time (like in most three-day-a-week routines), is that it saves a lot of time and keeps your heart rate in your cardio zone (which we’ll help you determine), maximizing heart health benefits and weight loss. It’s this cycling that enables you to hit the muscles hard and fast in a short amount of time, and it’s the reason you can get almost as much out of it in 15 minutes as others can get in 45. Sounds pretty cool, huh?
If you’ve been reading my newsletter articles, you know that as always this is only an example, and it can be modified according to your own personal needs and physician recommendations. Rep ranges can be lowered, and exercises can be substituted for easier (or harder) ones, and for those willing, our facilities are fully stocked with weights if you prefer to pump some iron over bodyweight exercises! After 15 minutes of hard work, though, you’re gonna wanna take a breather, and that’s where the cool down comes in!
3.) Cool Down — 5 minutes
So, this is as simple as it gets. The cool down is meant to be a nice easy transition, from the intense cardio cycle you’ve just done to a neutral resting heart rate. Cool downs are good for your heart in the same way that slowing a car down to a stop is better than just slamming on the breaks at high speed! So what’s the best cool down? You’ll never guess: it’s walking! A nice, relaxing 5 minute walk is all you should need to help you catch your breath and let your heart relax, and we’ve got just the place for that
60 minutes of actual fitness activity in a week that is 10,080 minutes long… That’s 10,020 minutes not exercising, and this is all you need to work your way to excellent fitness, only exercising 30 minutes a day, twice a week – .006% of your week. An incredible return on time spent… Stack a healthy food plan on top of it, and you’re set for life! As always, you know that we have the answers to your questions or concerns, and our in-house certified professional trainers are here to help you personalize this workout however you need – Your Ultimate Personal Fitness Plan, at The Fitness Clinic gym in Imperial Square Plaza. Let us help you create and smash your goals.
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Make an appointment for a complimentary current fitness assessment – Call Nick or Fred now – 954-491-4969