Fitness Friday–Consistency is the Key

March 25, 2011 by  
Filed under Physical N*Powerment

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Happy Friday!

With spring approaching (at least in theory out here in NY) we are all starting to turn our thoughts towards warmer weather and lighter clothing. Lighter clothing usually calls for our bodies to also be a few pounds lighter or a few muscles tighter in most cases. This is actually the best time to start preparing for the summer in terms of fitness goals for aesthetic purposes. If you start now, you’ll be just in time to flaunt your bikini body (or a cute one piece)–which I personally prefer.

Everybody wants to shape up and lose weight quickly, but the reality of permanent and stable weight loss or body building is that it takes time. Think about it, you didn’t gain weight or become out of shape overnight or in 3 days!

There is no magic pill or overnight program that will give you lasting results. Consistency is the key!

Here are three things that you can do consistently over the next 3 months that will guarantee you a better body and improved health by the time all the birds return:

Exercise–Do some form of uninterrupted cardiovascular activity for at least 35-40 minutes.

Research shows that our bodies don’t go into fat-burning mode until we’ve engaged in sustained cardio activity for at least 15-18 minutes–for most of us, this is just about the time we start to get bored, start looking at our watches or thinking about the glass shards that we’d rather be eating, but 15-18 minutes in is actually the switch-over point from burning the immediately available sugar in our bloodstream to burning the stored fat in our cells–that’s what you want to do. So if you jump off of your treadmill (or whatever you’re doing) at that time, you’ve actually just warmed up and haven’t really “done” anything. The actual time on the clock towards your goal doesn’t start until about 20 minutes in. To see any real difference in the distribution of fat on your body, you have to burn fat for at least 20-30 minutes 4-5 times a week. (in other words, you gotta be on that machine for at least 40-45 minutes) It’s ok, you can walk or run and chew glass shards at the same time!

Exercise–No, it’s not the same as point #1. You need to do some form of weight-bearing or strength training activity 10-12 repetitions 3-4 sets– at least twice a week.

For some reason, most women will get on a treadmill or go for a run and sweat it out, but they won’t pick up any weights to save their lives. I don’t know why, but if you want to see any difference in the composition of your body, you have to do some weight training to sculpt the way your body looks. To me, it doesn’t mean much if someone is just “skinny.” Olive Oil is skinny and nobody wants to look like that. Who cares about just being slim? (well, some women do). But if you care about actually looking “fit” then you have to build muscle to tone your body by lifting weights to give your muscles shape and definition. It also doesn’t hurt to keep in mind that muscles burn more calories, so having a greater muscle-to-fat ratio is a good thing. No amount of cardio activity will build muscles. Cardio simply helps your body burn the layers of fat on top so the nicely shaped muscles underneath can shine through.

Cut down at least 200-500 calories a week.

That’s not too hard to do. We can eat an extra 500-700 calories a week without even thinking about it, so consider doing the same thing, but in reverse–meaning think about it.

There are little things that we eat and drink every day that we eat “just because.” For example, as I mentioned last week, just because someone offered it to us, or just because we are bored, or angry, or tired, or hurt or restless or happy, or breathing…. Those are the calories that we can most readily eliminate by just thinking about WHY we are about to consume them. If the answer isn’t because “I’m hungry and I need this food to sustain me nutritionally” then back away. It’ll still be available next winter when it’ll be ok to be a few a pounds heavier because you can cover it up with a sweater or disguise it in sweat pants. All for now, the summer is coming and you want to be able to hang out without “it” all hanging out!

Trust me, if you do these three things CONSISTENTLY, you’ll see guaranteed change in the way you look and you’ll feel much better too. And by now you know what that combo results in, right?

A more remarkable YOU!

Have a great weekend!


2 Responses to “Fitness Friday–Consistency is the Key”
  1. Kimberly LaCrette says:

    Consistency is the key, but procrastination is my kryptonite…smh. I’m gonna really try to stick to a plan this time around. Summer is only 3 months away! Yikes!

    • Procrastination is a thief…Don’t let him steal your time…It really is very hard, but you can do it. Reward yourself each time you do something positive for yourself (even if it’s saying out loud “I did it” “I’m so awesome” “I stick to my goals”.) It really helps establish the mindset we need to be consistent. If it’s any help, I’ll be trying right along with you!