I know there is a lot of information out there about what you should do to lose weight. Every one has an opinion, am I right?
A lot of times when I meet a woman who is coming to me to help them lose weight they have a preconceived belief that they have to do a ton of cardio every day in order to lose the weight. That usually intimidates them and stops them before they even start because… who the heck wants to kill themselves with cardio?
Yes, cardio is important for losing weight, but so is strength training (which is way more fun and effective)
Cardio can be done in a number of ways to be effective.. You could do 10 minutes a day every day or you could do 30 minutes 3 times a week.
It is really dependent on your preferences and your schedule.
What I do NOT suggest (for most people) is to exceed 1 hour of cardio more than 3 times a week. Your heart is a muscle that needs rest just like the other muscles in your body.
The above suggestions for cardio is in ADDITION to strength training.
I suggest strength training at least 3 times a week for 30 minutes or more in order to see the most benefits.
Here is an example of a fitness plan I would make for a client…
Day 1 – strength train lower body
Day 2 – 30 min steady state cardio
Day 3 – strength train upper body
Day 4 – 30 min HIIT cardio
Day 5 – Rest (light cardio/yoga/stretch)
Day 6 – strength training/cardio mix (HIIT style)
Day 7 – Rest (light cardio/yoga/stretch)
For someone who only wants to workout 3 days a week….
Day 1 – strength train lower body 30-45 min finish with 10 min cardio
Day 2 – rest
Day 3 – strength train upper body 30-45 min finish with 10 min cardio
Day 4 – rest
Day 5 – strength train full body 30-45 min finish with 10 min cardio
Day 6 – walk outside/do something active with family
Day 7 – walk outside/do something active with family
So, in short, my answer is you can do shorter spurts of cardio more often or do longer spurts less days a week.
A key takeaway I want you to get from this is to not kill yourself with cardio! Don’t overdo it. Find a cardio plan that you can stick to for the next 6-12 months consistently
And also…. strength training is arguably more important in losing weight than cardio, so if you have to only choose one… choose strength training 😉
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