Fat Burning: Separating Myth From Reality
From fat-burning belts to fat-burning exercise: help or hype?
It’s pretty obvious from the continual advertisements for fat burning pills, fat burning belts, and the myriad of other “instant miracle” products promising a leaner, more muscular you, that fat burning is the latest health fad. . But what is a fact and what is an exaggeration?
Can building muscle and burning fat happen at the same time?
You’ve probably seen ads for various fat burning belts and wondered if they really work. It seems so easy, right? Put on a belt, forget about fat-burning exercise, and watch those firm, beautiful muscles magically appear. Unfortunately, when it comes to fat burning and basic good health, there is no substitute for a good exercise program. Now, that doesn’t mean joining a high-priced gym and working out a killer “six-pack.” Surprisingly, intense bodybuilding doesn’t seem to burn any more body fat than low-intensity exercise. Burning body fat and building muscle at the same time can be accomplished very well with some low-impact exercise.
If the outdoors isn’t your thing, many exercise machines can provide a great fat-burning workout. Stair climbers offer excellent resistance training, burning calories while toning leg and buttock muscles. However, for less impact and less stress on your knees and ankles, a good treadmill may be your best bet. You can set your own pace, burn those pesky calories and fat, and still get a great aerobic workout.
Get warm with a warm up routine
So how should you start getting slimmer and healthier? Your fat burning workout should always start with some basic warm up exercise routines. However, be very careful with aggressive stretching. Those wonderfully agile runners who lift their legs impossibly against their backs are probably doing more harm than good. Why? Because muscles need to warm up before they are flexible enough to stretch safely. Try something simple, like an arm circle or leg thrash. You will find that your muscles respond better and faster to any exercise, including fat burning, when you start with this type of dynamic stretching.
Your next step to burn fat is consistency. The old saying “no pain, no gain” should really be “with pain, no gain.” You really do your body more harm than good when your training is so intense that you become a sore, stiff couch potato for days on end. The key is to listen to your body. Don’t push the pain away, asking your body to do something akin to torture. As physicians, we see countless painful injuries that could have been prevented by a sensible and consistent exercise program. So exercise and keep your body moving to burn body fat and lose weight, but also be aware of your body’s natural limitations.
Ladies, tap into your hidden strength
When it comes to weight and resistance training, men definitely don’t have a corner in the market. Women may have smaller body frames than men, but strength is not defined by gender. While most women don’t want to look like muscular bodybuilders, the female physique can reap a great deal of benefit from moderate weight and resistance training. This type of fat-burning exercise not only helps your body burn calories and fat, but it’s also great for healthy bones. Osteoporosis is a very real threat to women, and weight and resistance training effectively combats this crippling disease, keeping you young and energetic with strong, healthy bones.
you are what you eat
As much as we’d all like to believe the “eat what you want and still lose weight” hype, the fact remains that we all need a healthy diet. Exercise to burn fat and calories cannot be effective if your diet is full of McDonald’s, Snickers, and Coca-Cola. Ask your doctor about a sensible low-calorie diet, and also check out some low-fat, low-glycemic foods. Some of these healthy foods are even rich in flavor and completely filling! Remember, your body needs a certain amount of calories and fat to function at its best, so never starve yourself. Instead, watch the unwanted fat melt away when you combine your fat-burning exercise routine with a fat-burning diet.
So are you ready for a new you? With a little willpower and persistence, a beautiful new world of good health, increased energy and of course a great fit body is within your grasp. Whether you’re in your teens or enjoying retirement, you may discover a new zest for life and truly enjoy what you see in the mirror. So get up, get active, and get ready to be wowed!