Sunday, December 26, 2010

Should women include strength training in their workout routine?

There are three reasons why women should include weight training or strength training in their workout:

 1) Increase strength and to be stronger
A strong core is essential for our daily activities regardless of you are man or woman. If your core is weak, you will feel miserable when you carry baby, bags of grocery or even a light luggage. On the contrary, you will enjoy playing your favorite sports in longer hours and lift more weight if you have a strong core.

2) To lose more weight, get rid of body fat
Strength training will help you to increase metabolism, increase lean muscle mass and burn more calories. Keep in mind that muscle burns more calories than fat. So, you will lose body fat quicker if you have more lean muscle mass in your body. All of us have muscle mass including overweight folks. Yes, the muscle mass is underneath your body fat. As soon as you get rid of body fat, your muscle will begin to show.

3) Build stronger joints and reduce risk of injury
Strength training increase stability around the joints, also help you increase bone density and prevent osteoporosis.

 So, why women stay away from weight training?

Most of the women think if they lift weight, eventually they will become Arnold S, which is NOT true. Women do not produce enough testosterone to grow muscles. You will never get bulky and become Arnold by lifting weight unless you take steroids. If you do it correctly, any workout with weight will tone your muscles and bring out definition that you see on female athletics. This is something that you will never get if you only do cardio exercise, spend hours on treadmill or other cardio machines and wonder why your body won’t change.

We lose muscle mass with age. If we don’t do anything to preserve the muscle mass, we can easily increase the body fat in our body no matter how many hours we spend on treadmill. We either lose to use it. But, strength training can help us to preserve and increase the muscle mass that will also help us to burn more calories.

You can do strength training at home or in the fitness center. The training can be done by using weight machines, dumbbells, resistance bands/cable  or your body weight (push up, squats, etc…).

Lastly, please always check wit your doctor before starting any fitness exercise program. Make sure you know your fitness level before you workout with weight. If you are a beginner, you should lift weight 3 days a week with the combination of cardio exercise and a balance diet. When I was trying to lose weight in 2007, I workout 1.5 hour a day, 6 days a week for 2 years. Now, I’m fit and toned, but I still workout 3 days a week just to maintain my fitness level.



Saturday, December 11, 2010

I know eating healthy is important, but, how to do it right?

Folks, if you do it right, you can build muscle and lose weight quickly.

First of all, find out how many calories you burn throughout the day. Click here for Calories Monitors on my website. For example, if your body need 1600 calories a day, 350 calories is recommended for the main meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner), 100 – 200 calories for snacks (2 or 3 times) throughout the day.

It is a simple math... If you burn more calories than you eat, you will lose weight; On the contrary, if you eat more calories than you burn, you will gain weight. If you burn what you eat, you will maintain weight. Keep in mind that you will achieve better result if you do it right AND exercise regularly. According to the research, losing 2 lbs a week is considered a normal and healthy diet plan. You should check with your physician and then plan for a healthy diet along with appropriate exercise plan before you start a new diet or workout program.

We should include lean protein and whole grain in our daily meals. I feel great when I eat less carbs but high protein meals. Why? You will feel fuller after eating lean protein meals than other foods. And, high quality protein intake preserves muscle mass that will help you to burn more calories. Foods that contain lean protein are fish, chicken breast, turkey breast, eggs white, beans, yogurt, low fat milk and cheese, tofu, etc…

Why whole grains? Whole grains have a low GI rating. This means they are converted slowly into blood glucose, and do not cause "sugar spikes" (sudden rises in blood glucose levels). By contrast, refined carbs, especially white flour foods, typically have high-GI values are associated with blood glucose problems and insulin disorders.