Here’s the damage from my Christmas day alone:
- Breakfast: Champagne, French toast with bacon and maple syrup, various chocolates.
- Lunch: Lobster, lamb, prawns, beans, potatoes, various chocolates and cakes.
- Dinner: Chicken (stuffed), Couscous salad, ham, beer, various chocolates and cakes and trifle.
Boxing Day was almost worse. It’s been five days and I still have leftovers from it. But from here on out, I will meet this calorie intake with a workout of proportionate magnitude. It is pain time.
Note: While ‘putting in 110%’ is important, never sacrifice form (the technically correct way of doing the exercise) for the sake of getting one more repetition in your set. Getting injured is the easiest way to railroad your weight loss goals – easily putting you on the bench for weeks.
Commit to a daily goal
Maintaining a healthy weight is so much easier when you simply incorporate exercising habits into your daily life. Here are some daily goals you could get into the habit of carrying out. They are deliberately written to be as easy to accomplish as possible, so you have no real excuse to bail on them.
- Do a certain number of push ups / chin ups / crunches / squats every day. Start with something paltry, like 5, and then increase the number each month.
- Walk a certain number of steps each day. You can literally go for a walk at any time of day. Do so before bed, or first thing in the morning. You can even park a little further away from work to get in an extra five minutes of strolling into your day.
- Go for a run each day. Sure, you’re a time-poor individual – we understand. We’re not asking you to go for a half marathon each afternoon, as even 1km is sufficient. If your schedule allows, longer runs can be ideal for unwinding.
HIIT is an effective way to lose weight fast
The basic theory of a HIIT workout is to get your heart rate up with some explosive, high energy exercise (like burpees, sprints, running up stairs, etc.), rest for 30 seconds, and then repeat for several more sets. It is exactly as tiring as you’re imagining it to be.
Nadine Shaban, a trainer from the States, explains how to get it done:
‘ The high intensity is where all the work is done and where if performed correctly, all of the “benefits” are made, while the lower intensity is there to stimulate recovery and have you catch your breath.’
While the effort you need to put in is significant, the learning curve for the exercises is virtually non-existent. Whether you’re a man or a woman, you should take a look at The HIIT Mum’s blog. She posts a lot of great HIIT workouts that don’t require any equipment and are stressful for even experienced athletes. Best of all, some only take 10 minutes!
Cardio in the morning, strength / resistance training in the afternoon
High intensity cardiovascular training keeps your metabolism burning fast for a few hours after you’re finished – as a ways of keeping your muscles fuelled up I suppose.
An article in The Age corroborates this, stating you’ll burn more calories throughout the day by exercising in the morning. Therefore, I find that a high intensity cardio circuit done first thing is a great way to burn off breakfast (and dinner from the night before).
Conversely, I leave all the heavy lifting for the afternoon after work. I’m lucky in that I walk for about 1km to get to the bus, so I’m close to warmed up before I begin working out. After some skipping and stretching, it’s straight into resistance training or weights!
The benefits of this kind of fitness plan are many. For one, it affords you plenty of opportunities to work out (either early morning or afternoon), and it splits up the workouts to the times they’ll yield the most fruit. You could alternate each day doing either morning or afternoon workouts, depending on your schedule. If you feel particularly active, you can even pack in both in one day!
Try one of the HIIT circuits in the morning, and perhaps try some of the 82 different types of push-ups in the afternoon (courtesy of Greatlist)?