Personal Trainer Review of Energy Systems

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         I was inspired to write this post by a remarkable young lady who not only appreciated the information but committed to using it to exponentially improve her fitness results.  As a personal trainer in the East Bay area I regularly see well intentioned and highly disciplined young men and ladies entering a gym or health club to spend 30-40 minutes of cardio before going to the weight lifting area to do some strength training. After six months to two years they find out that their bodies, while getting “fitter” haven’t changed much. In a few minutes you will know why and how to fix it.

         Our bodies have two choices for fuel, glucose or fat. The most easily accesses of these is glucose and we have to be strategic in getting fat mobilized.

       First you need to forget all they told you about cardio fat burning zones because it ins’t accurate. Next, after a few minutes of a full body warm-up, do your lots of effort involved strength training to build some fat burning muscle. The body’s preferred fuel for this activity is glucose, so make sure you have had some complex carbs onboard. If you’ve been doing a lot of cardio first and then you try this, you will notice that you feel depleted when you try to get some post workout cardio.

         This is actually a good thing because it means that you have expended lots of glucose and now must access fat stores to fuel your cardio and the rest of your day. In fact after a good strength training workout or high intensity cardio interval workout (which I will write about this week), you will burn more calories at rest from post work out oxygen consumption than you ever will from steady state cardio. Not only that but you will be burning fat for the next 24-36 hours and all you have to do is co-operate by avoiding sugar and eating supportively.

           So do your cardio for a little extra heart and lung health as well as the sheer enjoyment of running.  Here’s a short video of how we do intense strength training circuits in my fitness bootcamps.

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