Monday, May 22, 2017

Why has my weight loss plateaued?

 Joe Erwin, All-Access Fitness General Manager/ Head Trainer, answered:

There are several reasons why your weight can hit a plateau, including:

  • Losing weight too quickly. When this happens, your metabolism (the rate at which your body burns calories) can slow down because your body senses it is starving. 
  • Losing muscle. When you lose weight, up to 25% can come from muscle tissue. And since muscle is the engine in your body that burns calories and helps maintain your metabolism, losing it can hinder weight loss. 
  • Reaching your body's particular set point -- the weight and metabolic rate your body is genetically programmed to be. Once you reach that point, it's much harder to lose weight and even if you do, you're likely to regain it. 
  • Decreasing your physical activity and/or increasing your caloric intake. 
  • Other health factors, including thyroid or adrenal gland problems; medications like antidepressants; quitting smoking; menopause; and pregnancy.

Even with any of the above factors, the bottom line to losing weight is eating fewer calories than you burn. Studies show that people almost always underestimate how many calories they're eating. So if you're struggling with weight loss, you're still exercising, and you've ruled out any of the above reasons for weight plateaus, look at your calorie intake or change your fitness routine.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Switching It Up!

Question from member:

What are the benefits of varying your workout routine?

Answer from Joe Erwin, AAFA General Manager / Head Personal Trainer:

Individuals should consider varying their exercise routines for two fundamental reasons: (1) to prevent boredom associated with doing the same things work out after work out and (2) to avoid or delay reaching a plateau in workout performance and, subsequently, training results. Research has shown that adding variety to an exercise program can improve adherence. Exercise scientists at the University of Florida observed that individuals who modified their workouts every two weeks over an eight-week period appeared to enjoy their workouts more and were more inclined to stick with their exercise programs when compared to individuals who followed the same workout regimens week after week. Varying your exercise routine can also help you stay physically challenged. Many of the body's physiological systems (e.g., the muscular system) adapt to an exercise program within approximately six to eight weeks. If you do not modify your exercise routine, you reach a plateau because your body has adapted to the repetitive training stimulus.

There are several ways you can spice up your current workout routine, including boosting the intensity of your workouts. For instance, hiring a Personal Trainer to change up your workouts and keep you motivated. Another is  if you jog or run, try incorporating some intervals of sprinting (e.g., sprint to a given landmark, then jog to the next one) or adding more hill work to your run. You can also cross train and perform different activities to provide your body with a new challenge. A nice alternative for resistance-training exercises involves changing the sequence in which you perform the training exercises. By fatiguing the muscles in a new order or pattern, you are requiring them to adapt to a new training stimulus. Another option for adding variety to strength-training workouts is to replace some or all of the exercises in your workout routine (e.g., substitute a dumbbell chest press  exercise on a stability ball for your typical barbell bench press exercise).
Keep in mind that doing the exact same workout, day after day is not necessarily a bad thing. Some people enjoy a predictable, consistent routine. They don't mind the possibility of experiencing a training plateau and are content to maintain their health and fitness levels with a comfortable exercise habit. However, many individuals need to push themselves to new levels and try different activities to stay enthusiastic and excited about their workouts. By varying their exercise routines, individuals can not only stay physically challenged, but mentally stimulated as well. 

To change up your workout call or email Joe Erwin our General  Manager/Head Trainer to learn about the different options.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Exercise Results

Question from member:

How Long Until I See Results From Working Out?

Answer from Joe Erwin, AAFA General Manager/Head Personal Trainer:

I have been asked this question on many occasions, and it's a fair question. However, it is tough to tell when you can expect to see results from working out. After all, there are a number of factors that will determine the outcome:

  • What Results Are You Looking to Achieve?
  • Do you want to lose weight? Gain size? Get stronger? Get ready for a specific sport?
  • How Often Are You Working Out?
  • How's Your Diet?

What to Expect and When to Expect it?
If you're a beginner to working out, the first 6 weeks of your training program are very important even though you may not see significant results. These first 6 weeks are known as the "neuromuscular adaptation phase" and are characterized by an increase in muscular coordination and improved strength without a significant physical transformation.

So, therefore, if you want to lose and you're not seeing immediate results, just remember that the first 6 weeks lay the foundation. After that, the weight will start to fall off, bearing in mind that you're working out and eating correctly.

With that in mind, it should be remembered that achieving your fitness or weight loss goal isn't about doing something for a few months and then stopping. Instead, it's about making exercise and healthy eating a part of your daily lifestyle. When you do so, you will see significant results, and they'll last!