Tagged as: walking

How Hard Should You Work Out?

Around this time of year we see a large influx of members and a very common question I get asked is “how hard should I work out?”
Now like in most things, the effort you put in will reflect in the goals you achieve, but we need to be very cautious, as if we do too much too soon we can really injure ourselves. Statistically speaking January is the highest time for heart attacks in males in north America, this in part is due to the classic get in shape new year’s resolution. Classic “man syndrome” helps too when you look at a sedentary 45 year old male who decides to start running in January but thinks he’s still that 18 year old track star. Add to that the cold weather, which will restrict blood flow and hamper the lungs capacity you’re asking for trouble. That’s the worst case scenario folks. I’m not trying to put you off I’m just giving you some facts. So let’s look at how to approach this safely. I would strongly recommend a check up with your doctor if you’ve been out of the fitness game for a while.
For this we use an RPE scale (Rating of Perceived Exertion). There are a couple of different scales to use but the most simple and more common is the 10 point scale. This method is you gauging your exercise input and rating you exertion. Generally this is used more for cardio but it can be transferred to other types of training. The trick with this is where, which number should you aim to be at? And my professional answer is it’s impossible to say as there are too many variables. Please make note that the recommendations may not be for you, for example it can depend on your age, size, heart condition, blood pressure, your specific goals, lifestyle etc.
1: A walk in the park (literally at a slow pace with no hills)
2: Fast walking
3: Gentle jog or walking up a steep hill
4: Running a short distance for the bus
5: Sweating just a little, taking deeper breathes
6: challenge but manageable, getting warm
7: Tough
8: Very challenging
9: Extremely difficult
10: Absolute maximum
Now you may realize that with this scale it’s very individual as a walk in the park may be tiresome for some people. As an example I ask my clients to aim for a 5-7 on the RPE scale. Keep in mind I know my clients and have done a full health screen first. If you have any concerns or questions about this or any other health and fitness matters please ask me or any of the trainers at Dynamic and we’d be happy to help. We look forward to seeing you in the gym soon.

A Healthy Way of Losing Weight

ASK AN EXPERT: Dynamic Health and Fitness
Q. I want to lose a bit of weight before getting into my bathing suit for the summer. I’m doing cardio almost every day with minimal results. I don’t want to lift weights because I want to lose weight, not gain size. What would you suggest I change?
A. Cardiovascular exercises like walking, running and swimming get your heart rate elevated and you start to burn calories immediately. However, there are several factors that determine just how effective your cardio workout is in burning fat — namely: level of intensity, duration and frequency of your workouts and the type of exercise you’re doing.
To really optimize your results, I suggest adding resistance training to your cardio workout. This addition will help increase your lean body tissue without necessarily gaining bulk. The higher the proportion of lean tissue in your body, the faster your metabolic rate. In other words, your body becomes a more efficient “machine”, burning body fat for energy, not only during workouts but during your day-to-day activities.
If you haven’t tried resistance training, I suggest you start by seeking the advice of a professional personal trainer — someone who can help you develop a program tailored to your fitness capabilities and goals. Once you start, you should work your body in balance — front to back, left to right and top to bottom. Work your bigger muscles like glutes and quads harder than your smaller muscles like triceps and calves. Work up to an appropriate level of intensity so you’ll see the benefits of your efforts while avoiding injury.
Resistance training, along with cardio and flexibility training, is an important tool you should use in order to achieve and maintain a healthy body weight. My fellow Dynamic Health and Fitness personal trainers and I can help you!