Helpful Fitness Tips

Focus on the period of exercise beyond 20 minutes to maximize your fat burning–  When we begin exercising, our bodies draw most of the needed fuel from our carbohydrate stores. Once those are depleted, fat then becomes the primary fuel source. The precise time varies, based on your fitness level, time of day, how recently you’ve eaten, and other variables, but suffice it to say that the twenty minute mark, on the average, is when we begin burning primarily fat as fuel.

Avoid the Myth of the “Fat Burning Heart Rate Range”- Most exercise guides, and even exercise equipment that offers programmed routines, will offer a “Fat Burning” heart rate range, usually between either 55-65% or 60-70% of your maximum heart rate. While it is true that, while working in that range, you will burn a higher percentage of your total calories from fat, it is also true that the lower overall calorie burn will be substantially lower, resulting in less fat burned, overall. For example, let’s look at an exercise session where you worked at moderate intensity, burning 300 calories in 30 minutes. If 50% of those calories were from fat, you’d have burned 150 fat calories. Now let’s look at a higher intensity, where you amped your level up to 80% of your HR max, and you burned 450 calories total, but only 40% from fat. 40% of 450 is 180, so a lower percentage of calories burned were from fat, but still more fat burned total, 180 calories versus 150. Adding on the additional health benefits from the higher intensity levels, it shows that amping up your intensity is an overall win for your health.

Look at Your Total Daily Calorie Burn, Not Just Exercise-So, let’s say you have a killer workout and burn 800 calories. Way to go, right? Unless your fatigue from your workout causes the rest of your day to incur a slower pace. For example, if you normally burn 150 calories an hour just going through your day, but your exercise fatigue causes you to throttle back your pace to only 100 calories an hour, then in eight hours at that pace, you’ve wiped out half the benefit from your exercise session. Make sure that the calories you burn during exercise are in addition to your normal calorie burn, and you’ll see progress at a faster rate.

Be skeptical about claims of “natural” products –With one google search, you can find claims of natural cures and treatments for almost every issue know to man, and shortcuts for almost every fitness and health issue. This has been going on for years. For example, the common cold was once thought to be avoidable by taking high amounts of Vitamin C and later zinc and Echinacea, claims which have been subsequently been disproven. Recently, a family member spent seven days in an ICU because of consumption of apricot seeds, as touted by several “experts”. Her heart rate dropped below 30 beats per minute and her endocrine system basically shut down as a reaction to the ingestion. One of the main culprits of these “miracle endorsements”, Dr. Oz, when testifying under oath in front of the U.S. Senate, had to acknowledge that none of the miracles or shortcuts he had endorsed or promoted had the values claimed., as that there was no path to a healthy lifestyle other than a smart exercise and nutritional program.

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