Archive | October, 2015

Is Fat Loss 4 Idiots a Good Diet?

With so many weight loss plans in the market, it’s difficult to know which one works and which doesn’t. One of the most popular plans is the Fat Loss 4 Idiots diet. Since it has been first published a few years ago, it has been used by tens of thousands of people worldwide and enjoys a wide popularity. Its simple and easy to do program has attracted many men and women who have failed to lose weight before with much more complicated and harder weight loss plans.

But is the Fat Loss 4 Idiots diet any good or is it just an example of clever marketing?

Just like any weight loss plan, Fat Loss 4 Idiots is not perfect and it doesn’t work for everyone. However, the plan does work for most people. In fact, the vast majority of the many people I’ve spoken with were very successful with it. So, the bottom line is that Fat Loss 4 Idiots does work for many people.

However, this diet isn’t right for all health and fitness goals for the simple reason that it’s primarily based on nutrition and has very little to do with exercising. For some people this is a blessing: you get to lose weight and don’t have to spend time at the gym or running outdoors which is great if you’re strapped for time or just don’t like working out. However, if one of your fitness goals is to tone some body part or another, then you will need to add some physical activity to the diet’s eating plan. Otherwise you will lose weight, but not increase muscle mass.

All in all, I believe that Fat Loss 4 Idiots is a good diet and recommend it for achieving a simple, easy, and fast weight loss.

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The Best Cardio Workout to Burn Fat Quickly

The Two Common Cardio Workout Approaches

If your goal is to burn body fat, you have a few different approaches to chose from. The majority of trainers recommend you take the low intensity approach to cardio. The idea behind doing cardio at a low intensity level is that most of the calories burned will come from body fat. Many people believe that if you workout too hard, you are burning carbohydrate energy in the body and not targeting fat. Many people make the point that more total calories are burned if people exercise at a higher intensity level. They reason that if you simply burn more calories than you consume in a day, you will lose body fat. So now we will look in more detail at each school of thought.

Low Intensity Cardio Workout Approach

Low intensity cardio is the most popular form of cardio and is pushed by many personal trainers. Low intensity cardio works at targeting body fat and that is why it is recommended by many personal trainers. University studies have proven low intensity cardio uses fat calories instead of burning muscle carbohydrate calories for energy. If the body burns fat for energy, you will lose body fat. It just makes sense. It is important to choose cardio machines that can track your heart rate. It will let you monitor your heart rate during your cardio workout to allow you to hit the ideal intensity level. After about 10 minutes or so, you should be close to reaching your ideal heart rate. Staying within that target heart rate for at least 30 minutes is what is recommended by most experts.

The High Intensity Cardio Workout

This is a less utilized form of cardio. High intensity training involves pushing past your pain threshold a bit, so fewer people choose this route. This cardio method can give great results in burning body fat if done properly. The total calories burned in high intensity cardio are greater than low intensity cardio. Some of those calories come from your body fat and some come from glycogen (carbohydrates stores within your muscles). When you burn more calories in your cardio workout than what you consume, you create a calorie deficit. If you burn a more calories during the day than what you eat in food, you will lose weight.

The Limitations of the 2 Types of Cardio Workouts

Once you get your heart rate up to the correct level, the low intensity cardio workout will burn body fat. The downside is that it can take up to 10 minutes to get your heart rate to the correct level to burn body fat. The first 10 minutes of this cardio workout are somewhat unproductive. High intensity cardio is hard to maintain for long periods of time since it takes a lot of effort. Working at an intense level for over 10-15 minutes is extremely difficult.

How to Combine The Two Approaches Into One Awesome Cardio Workout

When performed in a certain manner, it is possible to benefit from doing both types of cardio in the same workout. You can make the first ten minutes of the low intensity cardio workout productive, by starting your cardio workout off at a high intensity level. Find a treadmill or exercise bike and set it at a high level. Push yourself really hard for 10-15 minutes. Once you are really working up a sweat, switch to a low intensity and keep it there for 20-30 minutes. This will burn calories and create a calorie deficit as well as burning body fat during the workout. I maintain an 8% body fat percentage year round using this cardio approach.

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Lower Ab Workout Tips and Exercises

Many people dream of achieving six-pack abs, but this is not always an easy task to accomplish. It takes time and dedication in addition to a routine diet and exercise plan in order to make any lower ab workout a success. If you want to achieve great six-pack abs, then keep the following tips in mind.

1. Diet and Exercise

When it comes to losing weight or toning muscles, diet and exercise are of equal importance. If you want to lose weight or build muscle not only do you need to exercise in order to burn calories and tone muscles, but you need to lower the number of calories you take in each day. A key component for successful lower ab workouts is a low-fat diet. If you need help coming up with a diet plan you can stick to, consult your physician. In addition to a low-fat diet, you need to get plenty of regular aerobic exercise in additional to the ab-focused exercises of your lower ab workout.

2. Stick to Proven Lower Ab Exercises

There are many workout plans and products out there these days and it is easy to fall for “get slim quick” schemes. Do not fall to the temptation of the latest exercise product you see on an infomercial – try out some of these exercises to see which ones work for you. Then you can create your own lower ab workout, suited specifically to your needs.

Reverse Crunches

Many people are familiar with crunches as a staple of the lower ab workout, but reverse crunches are also extremely effective. Lie on your back with your hands at your sides then slowly raise your legs straight up in the air. Exhale as you bend your knees and curl your lower body in toward your chest. Inhale as you return your legs to the beginning position. Do not forget to keep your abdominal muscles contracted as you perform this exercise.

Lying Scissors

To perform this exercise, begin by lying flat on your back with your legs outstretched and your hands placed under your lower back. You may find it more comfortable to perform this exercise on an exercise mat, but if you do not have one you can do just as well without it. Exhale slowly as you raise your legs in the air, bending them slightly, then inhale as you return them to the mat.

Side Crunches

To perform side crunches, begin by lying on your back with your knees bent, twisting at the waist so that your legs lie on top of each other to one side of the body, keeping your shoulder blades flat on the floor. Exhale as you slowly lift your upper body off the ground, contracting your abdominal muscles. Repeat several times then switch your body around and perform the exercise on the opposite side.

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At Home Cardio Workout, No Weights Required

Don’t let not having weights at home cause you not to workout! I have an at home cardio workout that doesn’t require anything but your body weight. Many people think that they cant get a great workout unless they have some type of weights and that couldn’t be further from the truth. The fact is that body weight exercise routines are simple, fast, and require no money. All you need is 20 minutes per day and some space to workout with.

With this Workout No Weights are Required

For this at home cardio routine you are going to do a circuit of five exercises that for a minute each with no rest in between the sets. So you will do one minute of jump rope followed by burpees and so one. Do one complete rotation of the exercises and rest for one minute then start again. So let’s get started with this workout.

Jump rope:

Start the routine skipping rope a fairly moderate pace for one minute. Make sure that you have a clock or timer in front of you so that you are doing exactly one minute of jumping rope.

Burpees:

After one minute of jumping rope transition into burpees. This is going to be a killer full body workout just from doing these two exercises back to back. Begin in a squat position with your hands on the floor in front of you. Then quickly push your feet back until you are in a push up position and immediately return back to the squat position. From there jump in the air as high as possible from your squatting position and then repeat for one minute.

High Knees:

High knees are similar to just running in place. What you want to do is make sure that your knees are coming up as high as they possibly can for the entire minute. Don’t start letting them go below your waist at anytime doing the entire minute. This will work your core area and you will feel a burn in you abs.

Jumping Jacks:

Many people forget that jumping jacks are a full body workout that requires no weights. The proper way to do a jumping jack is to start with your feet together and arms to the sides. Make sure you tighten your core muscles and stand straight up. Jump moving you feet apart past shoulder width while raising your arms in the air over your head, making sure you stay on the balls of your feet and return to the starting position.

Planks Exercise:

After jump jacks get on the floor or mat and lay down like you are about to do a push up. Place your elbows and forearms underneath your chest while propping yourself up to form a bridge using both your toes and forearms Maintain a flat back and do not allow your hips to sag towards the ground or to go upwards forming a hump. Hold the position for 20 seconds and rest for 10. Repeat twice.

After doing the planks rest for one minute and repeat this at home workout. Not only will you be sweating but you will have burn serious calories, be down in less than 20 minutes and best of all with this workout no weights were required.

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Muscle Building Tips – What Are the Best Ab Exercises?

Trying to educate consumers and aspiring exercisers as to what are the best ab exercises is no easy task and it is an issue that is made all the more demanding by virtue of the fact that there is such a gross amount of misinformation out there. Many people assume (wrongly) that the best ab exercises are exercises which focus solely on the abdomen region and so the likes of sit ups and ab crunches are favoured over other exercises. Needless to say, the exerciser who actually implements these exercises in their exercise and fitness regime will quickly discover that they are on a hiding to nothing.

We gain fat whenever the number of calories we ingest on a daily basis exceeds the number of calories our body actually needs at a given time. The excess calories are stored around the body as fat deposits and whilst a small amount of fat in and around the body is perfectly ok, when it is in excess, this is when it manifests itself as flab.

Without a shadow of doubt, one of the best ab exercises around is swimming. Swimming is an extremely effective aerobic exercise which means that in addition to the various muscle groups within the body being exercised and challenged in a safe, injury free environment it also means that the body’s metabolism is significantly accelerated.

The best ab exercises will be any form of exercises which increase the body’s metabolism and for those of us who do not have the advantage of a degree in nutrition, biology or personal fitness then a quick definition is in order: metabolism refers to the rate at which a body converts calories into energy. At the risk of grossly oversimplifying the process, the faster your metabolism then the more calories you will burn in any given period of time.

Please note that weight lifting and other exercises which are specifically designed and intended to help sculpt muscle tone and mass also have a crucial role to play in the process and this is because the body will require far more energy to sustain muscle tissue as opposed to fat tissue. Therefore, the higher the muscle content on your body then the higher your metabolism will be. I would like to issue one final caveat to the issue of what are the best ab exercises and that is this: make sure you opt for an exercise you will enjoy, and more importantly, where you are at a reduced level of risk of sustaining an injury during the course of it.

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The Best Type of Cardio For Weight Loss

Best Cardio For Weight Loss

If you are not already familiar with this, the most effective method of losing weight is to perform regular cardio on top of a calorie deficit diet. This is without doubt the best way to go. But, what is the best cardio for weight loss? In the long run the best type of cardio for weight loss is the type you are going to be able to perform on a regular basis. However, certain types of cardio can help you burn more calories and add more variety to your cardio workouts making them great for weight loss!

The Best Types of Cardio For Weight Loss

When it comes to performing cardio for weight loss you have a number of options. You can perform low intensity cardio, high intensity cardio, HIIT Cardio, circuit training, cycling, swimming or even just walking. Lets take a look at three of the best type of cardio workouts for weight loss:

Running: Traditional running is still one of the best types of cardio for weight loss. Running is convenient, cheap and can be performed pretty much anywhere. You don’t need to pay a fortune for a gym membership if you’re looking to lose weight and perform regular cardio. Grab a good pair of running shoes, throw on some comfortable clothes and go running outside. You can run in a park, field or on the road and pavements.

Running can be tough at first but build up your fitness with small 5-10 minute runs and you will increase the time and distance of your running sessions in no time. Running allows you to pace yourself according to your current fitness levels so run at a pace you feel comfortable with. If your unfit and out of shape start off with slow running for smaller durations. 5-10 minutes of regular running each day will do wonders to your fitness levels if you are a complete beginner.

HIIT Cardio: HIIT is another great type of cardio. HIIT stands for high intensity interval training and as you probably guessed, is performed in intervals. For example, you may warm up with a light jog for 2 minutes, sprint for 10 seconds, walk for a minute, sprint for another 20 seconds and switch back to a light jog. You can repeat the intervals as many times as you like. Feel free to add more sprint and rest intervals into the routine, the above was just a quick example.

As you can tell by the name, HIIT is an intense form of cardio but is great for weight loss. HIIT Cardio is often performed in smaller durations such as 10-15 minutes making it far easier to fit into a busy schedule. Certain studies claim that HIIT is the best form of cardio for weight loss due to the number of calories it burns and the effect it has on ones metabolism.

HIIT cardio can be extremely taxing on the body when performed correctly so think twice before diving straight into it. If your new to cardio and have yet to build up your fitness levels I wouldn’t perform HIIT just yet. Give yourself a couple of months to build your fitness levels up before attempting HIIT.

HIIT Cardio can be used in a variety of ways. It can be performed when running, cycling or even swimming. Most types of cardio give you the opportunity to implement HIIT into them. When performing HIIT in your cardio sessions be sure to schedule recovery days. HIIT will be extremely hard to perform every day so give yourself enough rest days between sessions.

Circuit Training: Circuit training is also great for weight loss. Circuit training consists of back to back exercises that are performed with very little rest in-between. A typical circuit may be set out like this:

10 Bodyweight squats

5 Press ups/Push ups

20 second rest

15 Squat Thrusts (also known as burpees)

150 Knee Ups

10 second rest

20 Star jumps

15 Bodyweight Crunches

Circuit training can be intense and should leave you tired and out of breath at the end. Circuit training differs slightly from other types of cardio by including a number of strength and bodyweight exercises in the routine helping you build a small amount of strength while improving your fitness levels at the same time. Strength and bodyweight exercises can be made harder by adding more resistance or reps to the exercises once you get fitter and stronger.

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Diet – Why Most Diets Fail

Why a diet fails: How many times have you failed at a diet? If you are anything similar to the average American man or woman, you must have failed at least 3 times at dieting, at various times in your life. And you blame yourself for it, right? Lack of willpower, determination, discipline… you know the works!

Well, here is the scoop. If you failed at a diet, it really is not your fault because most diets are inherently designed to FAIL!!

Let me give four of the most obvious reasons why any diet fails:

The truth about crash diets: There is a lot of negativity surrounding the word ‘crash diet’. Basically diets crash because they ignore the needs of the body. They advocate severe calorie cuts. But the important thing to remember is that food contains more than just calories. Your food also contains all the nutrients your body needs. Your body needs all vital nutrients, in their right proportions. Any diet that ignores or drastically cuts out one or more of these nutrients is heading for failure. Another reason is that crash diets recommend such low intakes of food that it is tough to remain on a crash diet for long. The moment you stop dieting and start eating normally, your body begins to store fat so that it has resources to fall back on when the next diet hits it. So, you see, crash diets are an open guarantee to rebound weight gain. Besides, crash diets take a heavy toll on your endurance, emotions and self-esteem. All around, crash diets are an unhappy and unfulfilled experience. Little wonder that they are also unfruitful!

Diet regimes that are too tough: You may have heard of a number of diets that boast of their power to make you lose weight fast. What do you need to do? O, not much! Just follow their complicated instructions to make lunch or dinner match their calorie specs perfectly. Can you imagine yourself doing this regularly, over any length of time? I know I would not slog over the perfect cabbage soup or lemon diet when I have to run for work in the morning and come back dead beat at night, ready to flop into bed. A diet plan with simple meal plans is the only one that will work, in the long run!

Exotic diets and what they mean: Ever come across a diet that tells you to eat something that is not locally available? I have come across many of them. While I am happy to receive the exotic stuff one or two times, I do not have the patience or the money to keep splurging. So, such a diet soon dies a quiet death. Your regular diet should be based on foods that you have easy access to.

Fad diets have no future: Fad diets are like a flash in the plan. One fine morning, everyone is talking about them. The internet is full of their praises and every celebrity you read of is going gung-ho about the diet. 6 months or a year later, the diet is nowhere to be seen. Fad diets are something of a fashion trend. They come and go in regular cycles. They promise lots but deliver little. In the long run, they are only successful in earning their makers a good amount of money, at your expense.

I could go on and give you more reasons why diets like the above fail. But, you get the drift, don’t you?

Now that you know what kinds of diet fail, what are the characteristics of diets that are successful? What strategies do people who successfully lose weight adopt? What makes them succeed?

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12-Minute Fat Loss Workouts

There are many reasons why people skip their workouts, but the one sitting atop the list is not enough time. If this sounds familiar, then read on to discover 2 ultra fast workouts anyone can find time for that will ramp up your metabolism and burn calories all day long.

Now because these workouts are only 12 minutes long, if you really want results, then you need to challenge yourself mentally and physically by working extremely hard.

So let’s get started…

In the 12-minute workouts, you’ll take two exercises and pair them back to back and repeat that pattern for 12 minutes, only resting if you absolutely cannot do anymore.

For the first workout, you will do an upper body superset of the incline dumbbell Chest Press exercise and the incline dumbbell Row exercise.

For the chest press, lie on a bench and press the dumbbells up and in, and then down and out.

After finishing all of your chest press reps, without rest, move to the incline DB row. For this exercise, lean up against a 45 degree inclined bench, grab both dumbbells, and simply row the dumbbells up to your abdomen. Use the bench as a chest support.

Then without rest, repeat that superset as many times as you can in 12 minutes.

The second 12-minute fat loss workout will pair two lower body exercises.

The first exercise in this superset is the dumbbell Split Squat. So you will want to grab a set of DBs and place one leg forward and one leg behind. Next, drop your hips straight down and then come back up. Do all repetitions for one side and then switch sides.

Immediately afterwards, you’ll move into an exercise that targets both your lower body and your abdominals, the Spiderman Climb.

To do this exercise correctly, start by getting into a push-up position. Next, bring one foot up to just outside your hand and then back down, alternating sides.

Be sure to keep your hips nice and low during the spiderman climb and be careful not to over-stretch your groin. Just do whatever feels comfortable and you will find that as your flexibility increases, so too will your ability to bring your foot up to your hand.

Once you’ve finished all the spiderman climb repetitions, go right back into the DB split squats and try to get as many supersets completed during the 12 minutes as you can.

So those are two great ways of fitting a fat-burning workout into your busy schedule that will help you reach your fat loss goals.

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6 Pack Abs – Cardio Exercise For 6 Pack Abs

Many people out there seem to think that doing countless sit-up and crunches all day will result in toned 6 pack abs. This is a great misconception and nothing could be further from the truth. The truth is that everyone, no matter how big their belly is, has 6 pack abs underneath that extra layer of fat. The key is to get rid of this fat layer and as a result expose those abs. Sit-ups and crunches will only assist in the actual muscle building of the abs themselves, but without losing that fat layer you won’t be seeing any abs at all.

One of the most efficient ways to lose fat (aside from eating correctly) is performing cardio exercise. This could be swimming, running, cycling or even fast-paced walking.

Perform Fasted Cardio

A very useful tip is to perform your cardio on an empty stomach when trying to achieve those 6 pack abs. I recommend doing your cardio first thing in the morning before breakfast. When we wake up in the morning our body is in a catabolic state. Catabolism means ‘the breaking down’ of body tissue, this is the optimum time to perform your fat burning exercises as your body is literally in fat burning mode. In addition to this, because you haven’t eaten any food before the exercise your body will break down mostly fat in order to fuel your exercise session rather than food in your system. The idea is to leave our body no choice but to burn mostly fat.

Maintain Your Optimum Fat Burning Heart Rate

When performing any exercise our body decides what resources to use for fuel based on how intensive the exercise is. It all comes down to our heart rate during the exercise. Research shows that our body tends to burn fat optimally at a specific heart rate. This heart is roughly 63% of our maximum heart rate. One is able to maintain this heart rate by slow jogging, fast-paced walking or other similar low intensive activity. One wouldn’t think so but this low intensive style exercise is optimal for fat burning! See the end of the article for a resource link which explains exactly how to calculate 63% of your max heart rate.

Perform HIIT To Your Boost Metabolism

Aside from low intensive cardio, it’s also a good idea to throw in some high intensive interval training (HIIT). This basically involves performing short bursts of intensive activity. An example would be sprinting (running) as fast as you can for half a minute, and then jogging for half a minute, then sprinting for half a minute, then jogging again and simply repeating this process. Although HIIT will not burn as much fat as low intensive cardio during the exercise itself, it is able to boost one’s metabolism even after you are have finished the exercise. For the next few hours after the exercise your metabolism will be a lot higher than it was before performing the exercise. This means that by doing HIIT you are literally turning your body into a fat-burning machine for the remainder of the day.

It’s important that you apply a combination of the above points. There is so much misleading information out there that can simply lead to fat gain and bad health, so be very cautious about what you read.

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Cardio Workout Weight Loss Routines – Best Exercise Tips

With tons of quick weight loss schemes that abound the internet (diet pills that can be risky to one’s health, diet fads that never work, and new exercise equipment with exaggerated claims), cardio workout is still your best card in shedding those unwanted pounds. Weight loss takes a bit of time, but with this type of training you can rest assure, that you will see good results, and in just a week’s time you will start to feel better inside.

A cardio workout is often the first step in battling obesity and maintaining a fit body. Although weight resistance training programs or weight lifting can be added later on to your weight loss workout routine, cardio can get you started, if it does not complete your workout plan.

Thirty seven percent of American people are overweight, and if you do not want to belong to (or you want to get out of) those thirty seven percent that have higher risk of obesity-related diseases and not to mention, poor self-esteem, then going through a good workout program, should be on your schedule.

Basically, cardio exercise is any activity that raises your heart rate to a level where you are sweating, but can still talk. It is an effective way of burning calories, thus helping you lose weight. Plus, there is a plethora of cardiovascular activities that you can take up from swimming, aerobics, or as basic as jogging.

Another advantage of this type of workout is that it makes your heart strong and increases your lung capacity. It also reduces your risk of heart attack, high cholesterol, and diabetes. It is important to note that there is no ideal workout. It is recommended to take up a workout that you enjoy. If you enjoy the feel of the wind in your face while running, then do it regularly and it can be counted as a cardiovascular workout. If you like splashing in the pool, then maybe swimming can be right for you.

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