Archive for March, 2009

How to Lose Weight on a Time Budget

Spring and Summer are now upon us and whether you are preparing for your wedding, a class or family reunion or even just a stroll around the pool, I know you want to look and feel your best this summer!
But what if you are short on time? It’s the biggest challenge I hear about as a personal trainer. So, here are 5 rules to follow to prepare yourself and your body for your best summer yet without feeling like you need to spend all day in the gym.
1. Plan ahead. A good day starts the night before. Mark your calendar for your weight loss target date. To get the most out of your day, check your schedule every evening and be sure you have scheduled yourself for at least 30-60 of exercise depending on your fitness goals. Have your clothes laid out or packed away and ready for your exercise time. Also, take a look at what foods you will need to bring with you for the day to be sure you are eating healthy and not skipping meals or grabbing fast food.
2. Combine resistance training and cardiovascular exercise. To maximize your 30-60 minutes of exercise 5-6 days per week, your workout should consist of 1-5 high repetition weight training exercises followed immediately by 1-5 minutes of cardio exercise between each set. Repeat 1-2 times and then move onto another sequence. You can always add an extra 15-30 minutes of cardio to the end of your workout on the days you can afford it.
3. Combine Weight Training Exercises. Want to pack an even bigger punch in less time? Try doing a couple of exercises together at the same time such as squats with a dumbbell front raise, lunges with shoulder presses and plie squats with upright rows. Keeping the reps around 20-25 will allow you to achieve an aerobic state, and by using more muscle within each exercise, you will burn more calories in less time than traditional weight training.
4. Drink plenty of water. It takes hardly any time at all to stay properly hydrated. This will improve your metabolism, increase your energy levels and decrease feelings of hunger (which is sometimes actually thirst). That’s a lot of benefit for something that takes no time out of your day!
5. Enlist the help of friend, family member, fitness instructor or trainer. You have no time for extra workouts after eating poorly and you need to stay consistent to see the results sooner rather than later. Tell this person your goals and ask them to check in on you at least weekly or daily if they can! By having someone there to keep you accountable you will be less likely to slide off your program.
For best results, always give yourself plenty of time to lose weight (1 week for every 2lbs you want to lose) and change your body when preparing for a special event. Don’t crash diet or do anything else too extreme. You can never go wrong with proper exercise and nutritious foods. By losing weight the right way, eating well, exercising and keeping your intensity and motivation high, you will enjoy the fruits of your labor way beyond your target date!