Tuesday, November 1, 2011

{Fitness} A Personal Trainer's Flat-Belly Advice

I thought this photo of leaves would be better than another look at my non-flat belly. ;)

When I walked in to the Y last Thursday I saw a sign up for free Q & A with their personal trainers. Yay! Except I felt really shy walking up to someone and saying "How come I still have baby fat when even my baby doesn't have much baby fat?"

So I went and did my cardio, came back to the lobby, pretended to read some other signage, and finally went to the member's desk and asked. Trainer-Luke gave me some great advice after I said something almost unintelligible about my belly being "floppy" (classy, I know) and even, if you can believe it, grabbed a fistful of said floppy part to demonstrate. (Hi, my name is Jamie, and I am socially awkward.)

What I Was Doing
  • Elliptical 3-4 times a week for 30-ish minutes, occasionally other cardio
  • 2 sets of 4 different kinds of ab exercises, 20 reps each
  • Counting calories (ugh)
Turns out that was only sort of okay, but not great.

What I Should Do

Here's what you (I) actually need to do to burn belly fat.

Alternate different types of cardio. You can't target-reduce fat, so cardio is it for fatburn, people. And your body adjusts to exercise if you do it too frequently, growing more efficient (and thus burning fewer calories. DOH!). He suggested alternating between bike, elliptical, and treadmill, and there are also some great classes I could do.

Count calories. Booyah. Still trying to do this. I forgot to share my strategies; I'll have to do that later.

Strength train. I have been ignoring it, because typically it doesn't burn a lot of calories. BUT apparently muscle mass increases your metabolism which burns more calories! There are also many other benefits, obviously. So, need to do that, either with machines (they'll show you how to use them for free at the Y) or classes like Muscle Max.

Work out 5+ times per week. He said typical recommendation is 5x week for... I think he said 30 minutes. To burn this off faster, he said I need to do more than that. I'm probably not going to. But I could definitely log more time at the gym when I go, so maybe that will help.

I'll keep you posted as I go along. :) Right now my weight loss has flatlined at around 111ish. (I am short. Remember this.)

Oh! And November's focus is finances! I've got some really great tips to share (my own and a bunch that people submitted via a little email poll I sent out). If you have some, too, please email them to me!

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