Can I Minimize My Exercise Time & Still Lose Weight?

Thousands of SLIMQUICK users just like you are on an exciting weight loss journey! We’re here to support you along the way, and are thrilled to answer all of the many questions we get from users through email, the message boards, personal messaging and Facebook – keep them coming!

All questions are important, so we’ve decided to feature some of the most frequently asked questions that we get every month. We’re all in this together, and if you’ve been wondering about particular weight loss issues, the odds are that several other women just like you have been wondering about the same ones.

We’re here for you, and want to do everything we can to make sure that you succeed on your weight loss journey. Always feel free to add any more questions or concerns you have in the Comments section below.

Wishing you health & happiness,

Your SLIMQUICK Coach

Question: Ready to kick this weight – Yay! I know exercise is important for losing weight, and since I’ve started with the SLIMQUICK two weeks ago I’m feeling much more energy and am pumped to get going with exercising to burn more calories! But I work full time and have two little kids at home that take up all my time. I wish I had hours a day to exercise, but I really don’t, so I have to really maximize the little time I manage to find each day. So how long does each exercise session have to be in order to see weight loss results? Cause I found a bunch of workout videos at the sports store and on youtube that are only 10 minutes long, are they for real or are they scamming me?

 

SLIMQUICK Coach: Great question! I think just about every woman in the world can relate! We want so badly to stay healthy and find the time to take care of ourselves, but no amount of wanting or wishing or willing seems to be enough to magically conjure up that 25th hour in the day, or can spontaneously eliminate one of the many other priorities that seem super-glued to our plates!

And so begs the question: where do you find the time to exercise? And how can you use the least amount of time the most effectively in order to lose weight without losing precious minutes? How can you be practical and efficient about your exercise and blast the most fat in the least amount of time?

When You’re Just Beginning Your Weight Loss Journey…excercsie-feet_sm

The American College of Sports Medicine recently published its research in the Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise Journal, showing that exercise newbies and people who are overweight will have more success with lasting weight loss when they do moderate exercise for a minimum of 200 to 250 minutes each week, which is about 30 to 35 minutes a day.

In order to make these 30 minutes truly count and tap into all of your body’s channels of fat burning, you have to squeeze both cardiovascular training (continuous movement that burns calories by getting your heart rate up for an extended period of time) and strength training (exercise that challenges your muscles against resistance, burning calories and diminishing fat through muscle development) into each and every 30 minute session.

When you’re just starting to exercise, the best way to accomplish this is by using a total-body circuit training method. This involves performing a variety of different exercises that require you to use all of the major muscle groups in your body, either at the same time or one by one. Typically, a total-body exercise circuit requires you to perform about 6 to 8 different exercises, and all of the exercises in the circuit must be performed one after another, resting no more than 10 seconds between each exercise (this is what gets your heart rate up, improving your endurance and cardiovascular system). Once you have completed the entire circuit, rest 1 minute and then begin the circuit again from the top. Aim to repeat the entire circuit 3 times. When you tack on a five minute warm up in the beginning of the workout (very important, don’t skip this!), plus a five minute cool down and stretch at the end of the workout, this type of work-out session should span about 35 minutes.

Beginners should aim to perform a total-body circuit training session every second day. On the days in between, do some cardio training by going for a high power walk, jog or bike ride for 20 to 30 minutes to get your heart pumping and to break a good sweat.

When you first begin total-body circuit training, start with lighter weights and easier modifications. Then, as you progress, get stronger and perfect your form, continually challenge yourself by attempting the more difficult modifications and by increasing the weights you use. In a few weeks, see if you can find the time to perform two circuits a day (once in the early morning before the kids wake up and once in the evening, after the kids have gone to bed). If you can’t, than continue sticking to once a day.

And Once You’re Up and Running…

Here’s the good news. Once you have been exercising regularly this way for a solid five or six months, then you may be ready to check out some of these 10-minute and 20-minute workout videos you’ve been seeing. Recent research is beginning to bid more and more for the merits of this form of “exercise snacking,” which are shorter workouts that use higher intensity exercises.

More researchers and trainers are claiming that real and dramatic metabolic changes are possible in as little as ten minutes a shot of high intensity exercise! Not to mention that many people are far more willing to find ten minutes a day to exercise, and may even be able to dig up three ten minute blocks, spread throughout the day, instead of trying to find one solid thirty minute block in your day to commit.

 

The best part is that the studies have shown that it’s possible to get even more successful weight loss results this way than through longer workouts of moderate exercise. And there are other advantages as well. Short periods of high intensity exercise force you to work muscle fibres that are less active (or not active at all) during longer bouts of moderate exercise. It can also increase insulin and glucose delivery (which burns fat that is stored in muscle fibers), improve cardiovascular health due to a reduction in large artery stiffness, and release more endorphins in your brain, which can make you feel fantastic after you’re done (making exercising a lot more enjoyable and easier to commit to every week).

Typically, these shorter high intensity workouts are a fast succession of back-to-back, high intensity moves that work many muscle groups at the same time (rather than featuring exercises that only work one or two target muscles at a time). There are a number of super-sonic functional exercises (learn more about Functional Exercises here ) out there that are extremely efficient at burning fat fast. This is because they require you to use your largest muscle groups (that blast the most calories) in high intensity ways, with wide ranges of motion that include jumps and resistance (weights, resistance bands, body bars, etc).

 

Short sessions of high-intensity exercise can be extremely effective at boosting your metabolism and shedding pounds, when weights or body resistance are used in combination with wide-ranging exercises that use your largest, calorie-burning muscle groups and increase your heart rate. An effective high-intensity workout should also include evenly spread, short rest periods, during which you continue exercising but at a lower intensity, before you kick the intensity up to full gear again. This cycling high-intensity-low-intensity training approach (also known as High Intensity Interval Training, or the HIIT method) allows you to burn the most amount of calories in the least amount of time.

 

Choose Your Exercise Wisely

Beware though, these more-for-less high intensity workouts are something to progress to, but are NOT the way to start for someone new to exercising. You should also avoid this route if you have heart problems or other medical issues. Speak to your doctor first.

Dr. Carl Foster, a professor in the exercise and sports science department at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, warns that although there are many advantages to high-intensity training for the experienced exerciser, this method of exercise shouldn’t be engaged in until you have about six months of longer, moderate exercise sessions under your belt. Then start upping the ante by adding one to two minutes of high intensity exercise to your moderate level workout. Continue to increase time spent on high intensity exercise gradually as you cut away time spent on the moderate intensity moves, until you’ve fully adopted a high intensity level workout.

Then you truly can start conveniently fitting exercise into your busy day with just 10 minutes – ten minutes in the morning, ten minutes from your lunch hour, and ten minutes after the kids have gone to bed – to get major fat loss results that are quick, efficient, and are worth every second.

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