This is just a little reminder of things to do when and if there is a time to “reign things in.”
These are things we all know. Sometimes it’s just good to have a refresher course.
Fitness Magazine popped up in my email with a handly little article just on this topic today. How timely is that! Maybe you have all of this down pat or maybe you haven’t had that vacation yet. Just know I’m right there with you if and when you’ve had a little too much fun and want to get back on track.
The first thing to do is Get Up and Move!
Amp up the exercise. Working out is the number-one way to keep your metabolism working. The more lean muscle you have, the more calories you burn all day. Muscles use more energy than fat. Exercise enough and you can help prevent the natural metabolic slowdown that can begin in the thirties and forties.
Your amp-it-up game plan: five workouts a week. “Do three days of aerobic activity and two days of weight lifting,” advises Shawn Talbott, PhD, an exercise physiologist, nutritional biochemist, and the executive producer of Killer at Large, a documentary about the U.S. obesity epidemic.
Second thing is to add some intervals.
Aerobic intervals help you ramp up your burn and can double the number of calories you burn. Intervals also keep your metabolic rate higher than a steady-pace cardio. This will keep you burning calories for as long as an hour after you stop exercising, according to Michele Olson, PhD, a FITNESS advisory board member and professor of exercise science at Auburn University at Montgomery in Alabama.
Just pick your cardio carefully. Aim for exercises that require your body to work its hardest by using a lot of muscle groups, Talbott says. That means running is better than cycling. Or try a cardio circuit. “Do a variety of activities — like running stadium stairs, jumping rope, and squat thrusts — for two minutes each, aiming for a total of 10 minutes,” Olson says. “That will really rock your metabolism.”
Add Some Weights
Weights are not scary and they will not make you get to bulky. A total body workout is the best way to add muscle to your body and help you zap as many as 600 calories an hour during your workout. Try to make sure you get your core, legs, arms, chest and shoulders.
Get off your Bottom
I’ve said before that they say sitting is the new smoking. We basically sit all day long! At the computer (I think a standing desk would be awesome!) at work, at home in front of the TV, driving, carpool, all of this sitting slows the metabolism, even if you think you had a great hour long workout, but spend the rest of the day on your bottom. Bad. An easy fix is to make yourself get up from the computer, stretch, stroll, walk around while on the phone, walk down the hall to tell someone something rather than emailing, add that sort of activity into your day. Scientist call this NEAT (Non-exercise thermogenesis). I wrote about it here http://www.marla-deen-fit.net/3/category/neat/1.html If you take advantage of every opportunity to walk and climb stairs, it can make a big difference. “A woman who needs to lose weight would have to burn about 190 to 200 extra calories a day to lose 10 percent of her body weight, which you can do by increasing your overall activity level,” Goldsmith says.
Get some zzz’s
Ever wonder why you want to munch or feel hungrier if you are tired? That’s because lack of sleep gets the body’s hunger hormones leptin and ghrelin out of whack, making you more likely to overeat. Research has found that lack of sleep actually leads to weight gain. In a 16-year study of sleep-deprived women published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, researchers found that those who slept seven to eight hours a night had the lowest risk for major weight gain, while women who got six hours a night were 12 percent more likely to pile on a significant number of pounds, and those who logged five hours or less were 32 percent more likely to gain weight.
Get some Nighttime activity
Not sure what you are thinking here, but I’m talking about a 20- to 30-minute walk around the block, after dinner stroll, family bike ride or some sort of activity. The average woman’s metabolic rate naturally decreases by about 15 percent while she sleeps, but an end-of-day sweat session will make the drop closer to 5 percent.
As long as the activity is at least two and a half hours before bedtime there shouldn’t be a disturbance of sleep pattern. You might actually feel tireder and able to drift off sleep quicker.
Don’t Skip Meals!
You do have to eat. Just clean up the eating, keep your metabolism going by not letting your body go to starvation mode. Keep it fueled with healthy goods and lots of water.
That’s my plan for “reigning in” the vacation mode eating and cleaning up my act. I am not going to make myself crazy by getting on the scales everyday either. That’s a sure set up for a downfall. I’ll check back in after a week . . .
So. . . stay off of this . . .
Here’s to a Great Week!
COMING UP: A New Video Review and GIVEAWAY!