Well, I felt the first slight slight nip of cool air this morning, auguring the coming fall, which is depressing for some, and exhilarating for others. Either way, it's coming.
I speak with a lot of people this time of year who say they feel like a beached whale after too many summer barbecues and a lot of blowing off of their fitness plans. It's natural. We're human. Were not perfect and we shouldn't to be. BUT, while you're forgiving yourself you excesses, don't get so off the path that you end up regretting.
As always, I'm here to help with my quick Beached Whale Rehab Workout. And, yes, that just popped into my head as I am typing this. Why? Because fitness is the only thing I think about (well, lies, I think a lot about food, wine and my ongoing mixological creations, theater, art, and such).
To keep it real, and to be very honest, I do think A LOT about my clients (past, present, and future) and what I can to do to deserve them. The word "deserve" comes from the Old French "desservir" which means to be of service, to earn, to merit. I find it is just who I am, which is probably why I'm so good at what I do.
Anyway, enough about me - this is about you. What's up with the Beached Whale workout I mentioned?
Well, it's a twist on what I do with some of my clients when they need a fast, efficient workout that doesn't require a gym (vacation, business travel, etc). But the twist here is, while it is fast and can be done anywhere, it is extremely effective at burning body fat. Extremely.
And you can do it IN 8 TO 16 MINUTES.
If you want to really burn a lot of fat, you're going to have to get a handle on nutrition as well. I've written about fat loss nutrition before, scroll through my blog and find what you're looking for. But the basics are really simple.
FAT LOSS NUTRITION 101
If you want to be lean, eat lean. Full stop. PROTEIN IS YOUR FRIEND.
SUGAR IS YOUR ENEMY.
Your body has a metabolism and wether it stores calories as Muscle or as Fat depends just as much on what you eat as on how you eat. You'll find that info in my blog posts as well, and much more. You may also want to download my 2-page nutrition guide at GetEmpoweredFitness.com/downloads. The password is metabolism. It's basic nutrition with rules for HOW to eat on the first page and lists of WHAT to eat on the second. Fat loss nutrition follows the same rules, but eliminates ALL sugars, and the starchy carbs that your body treats as sugars, as well as alcohol which has 7 kcal of sugar, as opposed to only 4 kcal per gram in carbohydrates and protein
In the Beached Whale program, you'll want to do three such days each week, we'll call them Fat Loss Acceleration Days (FLAs). It doesn't matter immensely if you do them on workout days or not, The only caveat is that you have to be careful you don't get woozy (technical word, ha) if you're doing an FLA that day. Got it? Thats nutrition for now. Feel free to poke around in my blogs if you're a nerdy type and just always want to know more. I, myself, am a huge nerd who no one believes is a nerd. Book by its cover.
Okay, we have the nutrition under control. Now, the exercise. These are the two main components and done properly, create a synergy that is much more powerful than either one on its own. But before I give you the workout, please commit this adage to your memory: "You can't out train a bad diet".
If you have not been exercising regularly and recently, I must inform you that you should consult your physician to get cleared for HIIT (high intensity interval training)
So, here's where i need you to pay close, close attention. You may want to read this paragraph twice. This is SIMPLE because I've distilled it down for you, but that doesn't mean its EASY. You're going to get great results from remarkably little workout time. But, nothing is free. You have to focus really hard, give the kind of effort you probably have yet to experience. This is serious. Want to change your body without dedicating your life to it, without chaining yourself to a Bench Press for 2 hours 3 times per week? Yeah? Me too.
INTENSITY is what we need here. Full on. Balls to the wall Intensity.
Here we go: Download a free "interval timer" or "boxing timer" App.
You're going to set it to :30 intervals and for a total time of 8 minutes.
Now, you're going to choose the appropriate exercises for your fitness level. I am listing them roughly by most to least intense/hard/advanced. Choose the most difficult exercises you can do for 30 seconds. And you can repeat a choice, skip one, whatever. What the hell does a beached whale know? Ha. (NB: Those of you who know me will know that the beached whale thing is a lighthearted, humorous way for me to diffuse compunctions about weight and fat which as a fitness professional I can tell you have very emotional components. I take no offense. And I give none. i wish not to offend anyone).
If you don't know or are not sure about the proper form for an exercise, I recommend Googling "youtube + (name of exercise). Very helpful. Or come to see me or take one of my classes. If you have appropriate weights available, meaning DBs that are heavy enough to give you a hard challenge within 30 seconds, use for the approbate exercise.
;30 WORK :30 REST
I recommend 3-5 workouts a week and 1-3 FLA days, depending on how much fat you need to lose.
Burpees (with our without pushup)
Deep Squat with Overhead DB Press
Triceps Bench/Chair Dips
Feet On Bench PushUps
Squat Jumps (wide legs, feet turned out, also called gorilla jumps)
Thats a good list. The ONLY thing that matters here is intensity. If you finish 30 seconds of an exercise and are not feeling a little beat up, choose the harder exercises. :30 WORK :30 REST.
As I've said, Ive made this very SIMPLE for you. But simple is not the same as EASY. I need you to give me 110% if your goal is the same as mine; that is, your being thrilled with the results. If you're not "dying" at the end of 8 minutes, you're not doing it right.
Remember this - The magic happens when you go the extra mile.
And depending on your current fitness level and how you feel after 8 minutes, I recommend doing it gain for another 8.
Best wishes to all of my fellow recovering beached whales ;-)
I'll be posting my new fall groups in the next day or two once I confirm when I will have space available after my current group members confirm that they are continuing into fall with me. Maybe give yourself a hand up and come do a 10-week program with me. The small groups are my "recession-proof" way to make getting into your best shape ever very affordable. Most people can afford $65/week. Come play with us !!! ;-)
Greg Rothman, MS PT, is a fitness professional, writer and the owner of Empower Fitness in NYC. He received his Masters Degree in Physical Therapy from Columbia University and has twenty years of experience in the fitness and rehabilitation fields. He believes that absolutely anyone can have the body of their dreams once they understand how to eat and exercise in a way that supports their goals. It is his mission to Empower as many people as possible to do just that. His “Recession-Proof” Fitness Programs are an affordable way to find dramatic physical change over the course of 10 weeks. Greg is happy to hear from you if you have questions about any topic related to fitness or nutrition, and can be found at www.GetEmpoweredFitness.com.