I run across many women with questions about home workouts. You should be able to workout and keep your body as lean and toned as you want. Here is a question I received:
Client Q: “This is exactly where I am…if I don’t want to join a gym, what is your recommendation for an at home fitness plan? As far as diet, I try to stick to the 10 superfoods these days, but I seem to retain water easily. It’s very frustrating, especially when I’ve never had to worry about weight!”
Mark’s A: There could be several reasons for your weight gain:
1) You can easily reach your fitness goals working out at home. I train the majority of my clients at their homes or places other than gyms. About all you will need is a stability ball and some dumbbells. The key for you is probably to speed up your metabolism.
Increased muscle mass will also help you to lose body fat and inches which is more important than losing weight (the weight loss will take care of itself). This can be done best by lifting weights 3 days a week and doing intense interval cardio exercise 2-3 days a week. See #2 below.
2) Your body might have reached a plateau. Weight often comes off easily at the beginning of a workout program. But then your body adapts to your workouts. When this happens, you need to vary your workout routines and intensity. Do different lifts for the different body parts, such as substituting bench presses with stability ball dumbbell presses or doing step-ups and lunges instead of leg presses and squats. Other ways to change up your workouts include shortening rest periods between sets, doing full speed exercises and lifting heavier weights.
Women many times fear heavy weights because they don’t want to get bulky. Trust me, you won’t get too bulky.
A shorter, more intense 30-minute full-body circuit weight workout will work better than a 1 hour weight workout when you are trying to lose body fat and weight. A circuit workout is one in which you do one exercise after the other with little or no rest between exercises. Also, change up your cardio routines such as rotating sprints, biking, stair-stepper and swimming.
3) It is good that you eat the “super foods.” They are good for you. But you also need to track your daily calorie intake. You will gain weight even on the days you work out really hard if you take in more calories than you burn (i.e., maintain a caloric deficit). You need to know your basal metabolic rate-BMR (how many calories your body would burn each day if you did nothing). Base your daily caloric intake on your BMR, activity level and goals.
4) Your weight gain could be medically related. Sometimes an improperly functioning thyroid gland causes weight gain. Or, as is the case when we get older, our bodies don’t need as many calories as it did when we were younger.
I hope these tips help. Just follow the three basic principles I just discussed—3-days-a-week strength training, 2-3 days-a-week of interval cardio exercise and maintaining a caloric deficit on most day—and you will succeed.
If you need more help…..
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Mark has helped thousands of clients and readers make lifestyle changes that lead to better long-term health, which includes acceptable body fat and ideal body weight.He does not recommend fad diets, quick weight loss gimmicks, starvation diets, weight loss pills, fat burner supplements and the like.
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