Keeping the kilos off in winter takes some extra focus, says Sydney PT Rachel Livingstone from The Health Hub.
Here’s what she says on how to kick start your weight loss to find a better you.
Kick start your metabolism
A morning workout ups your metabolism and keeps it elevated for hours. This means you burn more than you store all day. Less calorie storing, means less fat on the bum and tum. If you can’t fit in an exercise session in the early hours at least walk to work, take the dog out, choose the stairs over the lift or walk up escalators.
Often your brain lets you think you are eating better than you are. The coffee with milk and sugar… the cookies that were passed around the office… the nibbles with your after work drink… the extra generous portion of dinner in front of the TV…are all conveniently forgotten. Try to consciously decide what you will eat and how much is enough. Instead of multi-tasking, focus on the taste of your food to help you feel satisfied.
Change your muscle to fat ratio
To burn fat. Muscle burns calories, fat accumulates them. Exercising with weights has a triple benefit – it uses up calories during the workout, improves the shape and tone of your body and burns more calories even when you are not working out.
Ensure your abdominal workouts target all the different muscles of your midsection – the rectus abdominis (6 pack), the obliques (sides and muffin top) and core (deep abs). Check your technique is encouraging flat, not protruding muscles. As you lift your shoulders in a crunch you should be simultaneously breathing out and drawing the tummy in. Also, a strong core is the secret to being able to exercise more intensely and with better technique.
Legs in motion
Your bum and thighs – or glutes, quads and hamstrings, are the biggest muscles in your body. The more you move them, the more fat you will burn. Include squats, lunges, step ups, running, cycling, stairs and other big leg movements in your workouts. Remember you won’t get the butt you want by sitting on the one you’ve got to do bicep curls.
Huff and puff is the stuff
Research shows interval training (alternating between hard and easy) and HIIT training (alternating between extremely hard and rest) increases your fitness faster than longer, lower level exercise. If you can handle more in your workouts you are going to burn more fat – every time you work out. This type of training also best controls your sugar and insulin levels and it is their very interaction that determines how much fat you store.
By Rachel Livingstone Personal Trainer & Owner of The Health Hub