Jon Lamarche

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As you embark on your fitness journey this fall, here are a few tips put together by our personal training team:

Who among us can truly say that they are as lean and toned as they ever want to be? Most people, even the avid fitness buffs, are in a constant fluctuation between their ideal body and a body that is not quite ideal. So how do we sway this struggle in our favor? Quite often the difference between the body that you have today and the body that you wish you had is made up of simple daily decisions. Let’s say that again… DAILY DECISIONS…

#1.Eating small meals every 2-3 waking hours will increase your metabolism and reduce fat storage. Make sure that these are healthy meals containing balanced amounts of protein, carbohydrates, and fat.

#2.The easiest way to effortlessly lose weight is to not eat three hours before bed. It has been proven that not eating three hours before bed reduces fat storage throughout the night.

#3. A great way to burn off excess fat is to walk or jog for as little as 15-20 minutes first thing in the morning. Performing a calorie burning activity right when you wake up is more effective since your body is depleted of calories, and is forced to pull energy from fat storage. A personal trainer can help you identify your ideal target heart rate for maximum fat burn.

#4. The average Venti sized Frappuccino weighs in at 530 calories. This staggering number equals 2.5 bagels or one third of the recommended daily calories for an average woman. Beverages such as this contain high amounts of sugar should be consumed rarely since the extra calories they contain are readily stored as fat.

#5.During your workouts do exercise that incorporate compound movements rather than simple ones. This will not only help in burning more calories, but will also tone more muscle at once! A few good compound movement exercises include: squats, clean and press, dead lifts, bent over rows, and lunges.

#6. Want to effortlessly drop 30 lbs in one year? Millions of people drink an average of 2 regular soft drinks a day, which is a total of 300 calories. When you add these extra 300 calories up over a year, they result in over 30lbs of weight gain! Say no to soft drinks and say goodbye to your unwanted pounds!

#7. Fat free foods, when eaten in excess, will still be stored as fat! Fat free cookies and crackers are made up of a whole lot of SUGAR! Yep, the secret is out! Sugar is just as fattening of a substance than fat itself, when eaten in excess.

#8. Set fitness goals for yourself, write them down and post them where you will see them everyday. Your goal may be to lose 5 pounds, to lose 5 inches off your waist. Make sure that you are very specific with your goals, vague goals will get you nowhere. A qualified personal trainer can help you set your goals and guide you to them.

#9. Pump some iron! Did you know that 1 lb of muscle burns 30-50 calories per day, while 1 lb of fat only burns about 9 calories per day? The more muscle your body contains the more calories you burn each day. Resistance training has been called the fountain of youth – and it really is!

#10. Eat a small meal and wait 20 minutes before deciding if you need more food. This will give your stomach and brain time to communicate. If you have eaten enough food, your brain will alert your body and you will find that you don’t desire anything more. If you are still hungry after this period, eat a small amount more and wait another 20 minutes.

#11. Make a habit of weighting and measuring yourself monthly and tracking your gains and losses. This will prevent gradual weight gain from creeping up when you least expect it.

#12. Drink a large glass of water before every meal. It may seem like a chore, but drinking a large glass of water before eating is a great way to partially fill you up and prevent you from overeating.

#13. When lifting weights, try slowing down the speed at which you lower the weight. Lowering weight in a controlled manner will add strength and tone to your muscles and decrease the chance of an injury.

#14. Eating right when you wake up is vital to breaking the fast your body goes into every night. 2- 3 hours after you eat your body shuts down your metabolism and acts as if it needs to store food. In order to communicate with your body that it is healthy, well fed, and not in need of extrafat storage you need to start your day off with a small meal and continue to eat small meals every 2-3 hours.

#15. Try the straight leg raise for a challenging ab workout. Lie on your back with your hands under your low back, legs straight out in front of you. With your lower back on the floor, exhale as you pull your legs straight up into the air. Inhale as you lower your legs back down to the matt. This exercise helps to strengthen and flatten your lower abs.

#16. Eat complex carbohydrates instead of simple sugars for a leaner body. Your body is in constant need of carbohydrates to be converted into glucose and used as fuel. When your body has extra glucose it will be stored as fat for later use. Complex carbohydrates, such as whole grains, legumes, and vegetables, take longer to break down into glucose, and will therefore be less likely to be stored as fat than simple carbohydrates such as table sugar, or fruit sugar.

#17. Make sure that you are exercising in your “Fat Burn Zone” during cardiovascular workouts by checking to see if you can hold conversation without breathlessness. Your body needs oxygen to aide in fat burn, so make sure that you are breathing deeply.

#18. Want to spend 5 seconds a day to encourage weight loss? Drink a glass of cold water every night right before you get into bed. Your body will have to heat this water up to your body’s temperature of 98 degrees, and it will have to burn a few calories in the process! This sets your body up to burn calories as you sleep! When you make this 5 second activity a habit, you will be excited to find yourself losing weight easier than ever before.

#19. Your body needs a variety of nutrients to function at its peak and burn fat. Find new, healthy alternatives to your daily meals, and substitute them frequently. Make sure that you are eating 5 servings of fresh fruits and vegetables every day, of different colors.

#20. Losing patience with exercise? The key to weight loss and fitness gains is to consistently give your body new challenges. Mix up your workouts every few weeks, and don’t be afraid to try something new! Hire a personal trainer who can help you add new excitement to your fitness program.

#21. Water is needed for every function of your body, including the burning of fat. Try drinking a big glass of water in the morning, before meals, while exercising, and before bed. Drink up – it’s good for you! Take the time to incorporate these tips into your daily lifestyle and you will be pleasantly surprised with your results! To gain the most from these tips, I suggest that you hire an experienced personal trainer who can guide you all the way to your goals. Remember that healthy weight loss takes time, so be patient! Make an effort towards your goal everyday and don’t get discouraged!

Now go get’em! – The Gym Team