Bikinis, Bathing Suits & Shorts - only 90 more days!
Did you just celebrate the first day of spring with the realization that the bathing suit and shorts season is only 90 days off and you don’t think you will good in either? What should you do? The simple answers are:
Get physical and
Unfortunately this advice is not simple for many due to the mass of confusing information passed to the public through every media outlet available. Read on because I believe the answers that follow, help to take some of the mystery out of the solutions.
First and possibly the most difficult part, you must decide to lead a lifestyle that supports your fitness, health and body profile wishes. There are no magic bullets. Fat cannot be evaporated and muscle cannot be bought nor can optimum health. They are all a result of lifestyle.
Second, once you have decided on the first, is to take your own personal 90-day challenge. You may be pleasantly surprised at the results. Note, all of the following advice is based on the latest published research and references can be supplied if you wish.
Develop (get help if necessary) and participate in an exercise program designed to build muscle and burn fat.
Your guidelines might read like this:
Aerobic activity – 5 days/week - begin with a warm-up for 5 - 10 minutes, followed by 30 – 40 minutes of continuous (running, cycling, swimming, skiing, stair stepping, etc.) exercise at a heart rate of 180 minus your age in years. This is the optimum fat burning rate and it will dramatically improve your cardiovascular health. I call it “conversational intensity” exercise.
Strength training - 3 days/week - because muscle likes to burn fat, even at rest. Therefore, the more muscle you have, the more fat you burn. Strength training also prevents lean tissue loss experienced by many runners and cyclists.
Pick a group of exercises that challenge each of the major muscle groups (usually 10 – 12 different exercises will be adequate). Perform 3 sets of 10 – 15 repetitions each with 1 - 2 minutes rest between sets. Increase the weight when a set of 3 is completed with relative ease. Perform each set of exercises ONCE per week. So divide the chosen exercises into 3 groups (1 group for each weight training day).
Develop a new fat burning WOE (way of eating) not a diet.
The fundamental rules might look like this:
Eat protein in every meal and every snack. No exceptions!!
Eat some of the protein portion first to control the rate of rise in blood sugar that in turn controls insulin production. Insulin is the storage hormone released by the pancreas in response to elevated blood sugar. When insulin is elevated, you do not and cannot burn fat.
Eat one gram of protein for each pound of desirable weight. Choose from eggs, meat, poultry, fish, dairy products, soy products and supplements. (Supplements are merely an alternative solution to some modern problems).
Consume 30% of your calories as fat. Divide your fat choices between: Monounsaturated – 10% (olive oil, sesame oil, avocados, nuts & seeds, etc). Essential fatty acids – 10% (flax seed oil, borage seed oil, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, salmon, anchovies, lecithin, and supplements like EPA and GLA) Saturated fats - 10% (animal fat). Avoid cheap altered oils, deep fried grease and margarines of any kind.
Forty per cent of Calories can come from VERY complex carbohydrates (those highest in fiber). Low Glycemic Index foods are those that raise the blood sugar the slowest and prevent sudden surges in insulin production.
The combination of fat burning exercise, fat burning muscle development and a WOE that encourage fat burning, should have you looking good in 90 days. Also, your health will improve and you will feel great.
About the Author
Dr. L. Lee Coyne, the Healthy Professor, is a nutritional consultant, lecturer and author of Fat Won't Make You Fat and the LeanSeekers nutrition program.