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6 Reasons You’re Not Losing Weight

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Diet Mistakes Causing Your Weight-Loss Plateau

Food journal? Check. Regular workouts? Yes, indeed. Enough fiber to keep an entire army regular? You got it. I know how to lose weight. I’ve been writing about the topic for more than a decade. That’s why it was so frustrating when the pounds clung to me like a codependent boyfriend, no matter how hard I tried. A lot of women have this problem, the experts tell me. “Body weight can fluctuate by up to five pounds on any given day, so the amount you shed can easily get lost,” says Pamela Wartian Smith, MD, the author of Why You Can’t Lose Weight. I combed through research and grilled diet gurus to pinpoint little-known reasons that your efforts — and mine — haven’t been showing up on the scale. Who knew?

You Don’t Drink Enough Water

We’ve all heard how important H2O is when it comes to shedding pounds. It helps to suppress appetite, so you’re less likely to overeat. But that’s not all: When you’re dehydrated, your kidneys can’t function properly, so the body turns to the liver for additional support. Because the liver is working so hard, more of the fat you consume is stored rather than burned off.

What surprised me most, though, is that if you’re upping your fiber intake but not also hitting the bottle hard, things tend to get a wee bit, er, backed up. “It’s important to add fiber gradually and increase water intake at the same time. Otherwise, instead of helping with digestion, fiber may actually lead to constipation,” notes Anna-Lisa Finger, RD, a personal trainer for the Johns Hopkins Weight Management Center in Baltimore. I often consume nearly double the recommended 25 grams of fiber daily. Gulp.

Just how much water should I be drinking? “About one-half your body weight in ounces every day, especially if you’re exercising,” Dr. Smith says. So the eight-cups-a-day rule applies only to sedentary women who weigh 128 pounds (sure as hell not me!). “If you consume an aggressive amount of fiber, another eight to 16 ounces a day is a good idea,” Dr. Smith adds. H2OMG! That amount of liquid — for me, 12 cups a day, minimum — requires serious effort. I fill up with about a liter at each meal, and I’m a peeing machine.

You Skimp on Protein

Several studies show that high-protein diets result in more pounds shed, at least initially. Protein enhances the feeling of satiety and prevents your losing muscle as you lose fat. You also have dietary thermogenesis, which is the energy you burn to process and use the food you eat, on your side. “Your body expends more energy to metabolize protein than carbs or fat,” says Cari Coulter, RD, the program director for Wellspring Weight Loss Camp in Kenosha, Wisconsin. “So higher-protein diets make you burn slightly more calories.”

So how much protein do I need a day? “It depends on your weight, but most women should get 40 to 80 grams,” Dr. Smith says. To accomplish that, I have Greek yogurt (18 grams) or a couple of eggs (13 grams) for breakfast, and I eat a few ounces of lean poultry (25 grams) or fish (22 grams) or a heaping helping of black beans (15 grams) or lentils (18 grams) at lunch and dinner. I snack on a handful of raw almonds (6 grams). As a result, I feel fuller — sometimes so full I don’t even sneak a bite of my son’s ice cream (the way I used to whether I was hungry or not) — so it’s easier to keep daily calories in check.

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More Reasons Why You’re Not Losing Weight

You Sit at a Desk All Day

I log a solid hour of exercise almost every day, but outside of that, my time is mostly spent sitting in front of a computer. Much to my dismay, research finds that dedicated workouts simply can’t compensate for being sedentary the rest of the time. According to one University of Missouri-Columbia study, sitting for just a few hours causes your body to stop making a fat-inhibiting enzyme called lipase. Getting up and walking for just two minutes during each of those hours burns an additional 59 calories a day, according to recent research from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

Experts recommend setting a timer on the computer to remind you to move every hour, but what’s helped me is the Fitbit One ($100, fitbit.com). I keep this activity tracker clipped to my bra 24-7, and I won’t go to bed until I’ve logged 10,000 steps a day. To accomplish that, I heed some of those recommendations we’ve all heard a million times (“Take the stairs instead of the elevator,” “Park far away from the mall”). I even jog in place while brushing my teeth and watching TV. At first my husband and son laughed their skinny little butts off at me, but now seeing me hopping around the living room strikes them as normal. Walks are part of my family’s evening routine, and “How many steps do you have now?” has become the new “Are we there yet?” I’ve even given Fitbits to friends and family as gifts so we can see who takes the most steps. Move-more mission: accomplished.

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Your Numbers Are Off

I’ve always considered myself a math whiz, so I assumed that I had the whole calories-in, calories-out formula down pat. Here’s how I determined how many I should eat a day: I got my basal metabolic rate (BMR, or the amount of calories I need to maintain my weight) using the online calculator at fitnessmagazine.com/weight-loss/bmr, and I entered “moderate” for my activity level, because I exercise regularly. That gave me about 2,400 calories a day. Then I added whatever calories I burn during my workouts (usually about 500), according to my heart-rate monitor. That meant I could eat almost 3,000 calories a day without gaining a pound (or nearly 2,500 a day to lose a pound a week). Sure, it seemed high, but I had used a calculator. It had to be right!

Not so fast, Coulter says. “The BMR calculator already factors in the calories you burn with your workouts, so you shouldn’t add them in again,” she explains. Math club membership revoked! All this time I had thought my daily needs were 500 calories higher than they really were. No wonder I’d been maintaining instead of losing.

You Work Out Regularly

I know, I know. How can an exercise routine make you gain? For starters, people tend to eat more when they work out, either because they feel they’ve earned it or because they’re overestimating how much they’ve burned — or both. “This is especially true in the early stages of a fitness program, when your body is getting used to the decrease in calories consumed and the increase in calories burned,” Finger says. (Read: You’re freaking hungry.)

But here’s the real shocker: Working out can make you retain water. “To ensure that you don’t get dehydrated, the plasma in your bloodstream will store an extra two to four pounds of water,” explains Michele S. Olson, PhD, a FITNESS advisory board member and professor of exercise science at Auburn University at Montgomery in Alabama. “You’ll always carry that extra water unless you become inactive; it’s not fat or muscle, but simply superhydration. It’s a good thing.” It’s also a good thing to keep chugging H2O, which can, counterintuitively, help minimize additional water retention. So I’ll take Olson’s advice and stay active, well-hydrated…and off the scale.

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You’re a Stress Case

I’m a lot like the lab rats — and humans — who turn to comfort food and pack on pounds when they’re under duress. “The stress hormone cortisol triggers the fight-or-flight response, which is an appetite stimulant,” Dr. Smith says. “In addition, it steps up the production of a certain brain chemical, neuropeptide Y, which increases cravings for carbohydrates.”

Even when I don’t give in to cravings, stress can stall my slim-down. “Too much cortisol slows metabolism,” Dr. Smith says. “Even worse, excessive stress causes fat to be stored in the abdominal area, where weight is harder to lose.” Ugh! I can practically feel my belly expanding every time I have a meltdown over something, including my weight-loss efforts.

Luckily, a lot of the things I’m doing to whittle my middle should also ease my angst. “Exercise reduces stress,” Dr. Smith notes. “Balanced, nutritious meals can repair the damage that stress does to the body, and a social support network also helps.” So my team of Fitbit-wearing friends and fam is helping me beat belly bloat in more ways than one.

Get Weight-Loss Results

Scale Serenity

It’s been three months since I embarked on this adventure, and I’ve lost 12 pounds — a solid pound a week. I’ve increased my water and protein intake, I move more throughout the day, and I’m trying to stress less. But one of the best things I’ve done has been — go figure — not weighing myself, at least for a little while, as Olson suggested. I was tempted in the beginning, but I stuck to my scale embargo for a month. Now I weigh in weekly, but the fluctuations don’t bother me. Really. Because I know I’m creating a daily calorie deficit, and I’ve found other ways to measure my progress (see “Beyond the Numbers,” below). I know the fat is coming off, no matter what the scale says. I feel enlightened — in more ways than one.

Beyond the Numbers

When the scale bums you out, here are three other ways to gauge your progress.

How do your clothes fit? Try on the same pair of jeans and shirt every six to eight weeks.

How do you feel? You should have more energy, sleep better, and feel less stressed.

How much can you do? Keep a workout log and track how much weight you can lift and how many miles you can walk or run.

 

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How Santa Claus and 8 More of Your Favorite Fictional Characters Can Get Fit

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Jessica Rabbit famously once said, “I’m not bad, I’m just drawn that way.” But not all fictional characters are so lucky. Many are created overweight, out of shape, and in need of a good workout. But that doesn’t mean they can’t change…We spoke to Steve Edwards, Beachbody’s VP of Fitness and Nutrition, to figure out which program would help such characters as Santa Claus, Homer Simpson, and the Blob get into shape.

HOMER SIMPSON
AGE: 40
HEIGHT: 6’0″
WEIGHT: 239 lbs.
One night, after being thrown out of an all-you-can-eat seafood restaurant for eating too much, Homer drove around until 3 AM looking for another all-you-can-eat seafood restaurant. His compulsive eating is matched only by his compulsive drinking and his compulsive aversion to exercise.
WHICH PROGRAM IS RIGHT FOR HIM? “I’d probably start him with 10-Minute Trainer because he needs to do something suited to his short attention span that will change his habits without a lot of time investment. Homer’s the kind of person who will find any excuse to not exercise. But ten minutes a day? Pretty hard to find an excuse not to do that.”

GARFIELD
AGE: 35 (in cat years)
HEIGHT: 3’2”
WEIGHT: 30 lbs.
Garfield’s diet consists of lasagna (which he eats by the pan), coffee, and the occasional houseplant. His only exercise comes when he smacks Odie across the nose, smushes a spider, or tries to mail Nermal to Abu Dhabi.
WHICH PROGRAM IS RIGHT FOR HIM? “Cats are athletically gifted, even if they’re out of shape, so I’m thinking we’d want to start Garfield on a basic-level movement-based program like FOCUS T25. It’s basically twenty-five minutes of movement-based, high-intensity training. Then, when he’s done, I’d move him into THE ASYLUM, which would help him in his fights with Odie.”

GET IT DONE: IN  25 MINUTES A DAY!

THE PENGUIN FROM BATMAN
AGE: mid-60s
HEIGHT: 5’2”
WEIGHT: 175 lbs.
Because of his height and weight, the Penguin typically waddles when he walks, which is not conducive to regular exercise. He also has a business to run, and Batman to run from, so he doesn’t have a lot of time.
WHICH PROGRAM IS RIGHT FOR HIM? “I would give him P90X3 because it’s a diverse fitness program. He’s often fighting off Batman, so the more versatile he is, the better chance he’ll have to escape. Plus, the program is only 30 minutes a day, so he’ll be able to squeeze that into his busy schedule.”


MARIO FROM SUPER MARIO BROS.
AGE: 40
HEIGHT: 4’9”
WEIGHT: 200 lbs.
Though he does a lot of running and jumping, and has a healthy, mushroom-based diet, this portly plumber still has the Buddha belly he’s had since 1981.
WHICH PROGRAM IS RIGHT FOR HIM? “He does a lot of cardio, so what he needs to do is lift weights so he can change his body composition. I’d put him on Body Beast, which is a bodybuilding program. He’s already fit, we don’t need to get him fitter, but we need to change the way he trains and get his metabolism moving in a way where he’ll burn more calories.”

BOMBUR FROM THE HOBBIT
AGE: 44
HEIGHT: 4’5”
WEIGHT: 100 lbs.
Often referred to as “Poor Fat Bombur,” this dwarf did get some exercise when he joined his friends on a quest to free the Lonely Mountain from the dragon Smaug. Though, sadly, this was the only exercise he ever got.
WHICH PROGRAM IS RIGHT FOR HIM? “He’s kind of in a similar situation as Mario, since he walks around a lot. But he’s a lot less athletic. So he needs more movement-based training. I’d put him on P90X2 because it would not only help him change his body type, but he also wants to get ready for adventure, and P90X2 is our ultimate performance program.”


ERIC CARTMAN FROM SOUTH PARK
AGE: 10
HEIGHT: 4’2”
WEIGHT: 90 lbs.
Besides living in a constant state of denial about his weight—”I’m not fat,” he often says, “I’m big boned”—Eric also lives on a steady diet of Cheesy Poofs, chicken pot pie, and fast food, while avoiding most exercise.
WHICH PROGRAM IS RIGHT FOR HIM? “With a guy like that, you want to find an exercise he’ll like to do. So I’d give him LES MILLS COMBAT, which is a martial arts program. It would be good for someone like Cartman because COMBAT would make him forget that he’s exercising and think he’s working on his fighting moves.”

LES MILLS COMBAT. Work out like a warrior. Get shredded in 60 days.

RALPH KRAMDEN FROM THE HONEYMOONERS
AGE: 40
HEIGHT: 5′ 10″
WEIGHT: 250–300 lbs.
As a bus driver, Ralph sits eight hours a day. As a man constantly trying to come up with get-rich-quick schemes, Ralph also sits for a different eight hours a day. You can see the problem.
WHICH PROGRAM IS RIGHT FOR HIM? “He’d also be a candidate for 10-Minute Trainer, but since his wife wants him to go dancing and do more active stuff, and he’s resistant to it, I’d give him Hip Hop Abs instead. He’s out of shape, and almost any of our programs would work for him, but Hip Hop Abs gives you a little more rhythm, which might get him to take his wife dancing.”

THE BLOB FROM THE BLOB
AGE: unknown
HEIGHT: varies
WEIGHT: increases with every meal
After landing in the woods outside a small town in Pennsylvania, the Blob proceeded to eat an old man, a doctor, a nurse, a car mechanic, a janitor, a movie projectionist, and a bunch of movie patrons in a single night. Which isn’t healthy (or a good way to make friends).
WHICH PROGRAM IS RIGHT FOR HIM? “The Blob didn’t like the cold. So I’d go with Brazil Butt Lift, which was shot on a beach set. It’s an indoor video program, but you’re looking at people on a beach. If the Blob can look at the beach all the time, it would probably be pretty motivated to exercise.”

SANTA CLAUS
AGE: 1,743
HEIGHT: 6’0”
WEIGHT: 5 clouds and 10 stars
While he works hard on Christmas Eve, old Saint Nick spends the rest of the year sleeping, fishing, and playing World of Warcraft. He also, on Christmas Eve, eats tons of cookies but only drinks half of the milk that kids leave out for him.
WHICH PROGRAM IS RIGHT FOR HIM? “I think he needs P90X because it builds a functional fitness base that can see you through for a long time. And because the program trains you so thoroughly, you can keep your results for a long time. It’s a little more of a time investment up front, but for his schedule, it would be the best thing.”

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Let me Help You! I would love to Be YOUR COACH. Pick a Program above and let’s Get started. Which Fictional Character are you most like??

 

Tony Horton 10-Minute Jump Rope Workout

Hello, boys and girls! Today we have a workout called JUMP PUMP! We’re going to jump some rope for 10 minutes straight. For some of you, this will be an awesome warm-up. For others, it’s gonna be a very difficult, full-on workout. Grab a jump rope and let’s jump it out.

TONY HORTON 10 Minute Jump Rope Workout

 

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7 reasons why home workouts are better than a gym membership!!

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Here is why I believe that home workouts are much better than gym memberships:

    1. home workout programs vs gym membershipsNo strings attached: I can buy a Beachbody home workout program like Les Mills Pump or Insanity and use it as long as I want and then start a new program whenever I feel like it without suffering any kind of penalty. The gym membership  was only available as a contract for 12 -18 months, though. So I would have been stuck with a monthly bill for at least a year even if I stopped training there. 
    2. More bang for your buck: The gym membership had a monthly fee of $60. I did the math in my head very quick and said “Thanks, but no thanks.” A year’s membership fees inlcuding the sign up fee of $100 would have cost me $820–that is 3 times as much as I paid  for my whole library of Beachbody home workout programs (I currently have 10!). Besides, my workout DVDs have one low price for unlimited training. You can’t beat that.
    3. 1-on-1 attention from trainers: Yeah, I know, Shaun T. is not really in my living room when I do the Plyometric Cardio Circuit. But it sure feels like it. He is giving me non-stop advice and motivation and makes me work my butt off. At the gym, however, you are lucky if you get enough feedback to get your heart rate up. Unless you can find the rare breed of a personal trainer who can truly keep his eye balls focused on you.
    4. Time savings: When I work out at home I don’t have to worry about wasting my valuable time in traffic, but I can rather spend it on a longer workout. Plus I don’t have to wait on my “trainer” to tell me what to do next while he is chatting up the hot chick on the other side of the room.
    5. Gas money savings: Current gas prices are no pick-nick and every mile you can avoid to drive will help you save money on gas (not to mention you are also doing your part to reduce air pollution). Driving to the gym is a trip you can avoid if you work out at home like I do.
    6. Convenience: At home you can pop the workout DVD in your player and get your sweat on whenever it fits into your schedule. So you won’t have to rearrange your life while trying to fit some fitness into your daily schedule. At the gym you have to follow their schedule, which can throw a real curve ball into your weight loss efforts if you are already very busy.    FOR INSTANCE….CHECK OUT MY VIDEO!!               

7.  Health hazards: Let’s be honest, everyone sweats, sneezes or coughs occasionally. At the gym all those bodily fluids end up on exercise equipment and all over the locker rooms. Picking up a virus this way is almost a given unless you have the immune system of Superman. At home, on the other hand, all you have to worry about is your own mess and germs, which is still less risky than being exposed to the junk of hundreds of other people.  LEARN MORE ABOUT MY HOME WORKOUT GROUPS

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Brian Lost 128 Pounds Through At-Home Workouts

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FIND A WORKOUT THAT WILL WORK FOR YOU!!

 

Name: Brian Utter
Age: 33
Height: 5’7″
Before Weight: 322 pounds

How I Gained It: I gained weight after my divorce — which had to do with my drinking, if I’m to be honest. And then it just got worse. I was drinking at least an 18 pack of beer every day, along with whatever hard liquor I had around. Along with my drinking, I was depressed and would binge eat. I would eat a whole pizza by myself, order two meals at whatever burger joint i went to, and my bill for a single trip to a place like Taco Bell was around $20 just for me. When I was at the bar with my friends I’d eat and where I live the bars close at 2 a.m., so after the bars I’d go to Perkins, I-Hop…whatever was open. So for me it was just a downward spiral.

Breaking Point: I would like to say that I had this “ It’s A Wonderful Life”-type moment and realized what the world would be like without me, but I would be lying. My motives were more selfish, and inspired from fear…fear of dying, to be specific.

I received a phone call at 3 a.m. one morning with the news that my mother had a heart attack and was in the hospital. At this time I lived three hours away from my mother, and during this drive I had a lot of time to think. What did I think of? Myself! I was scared of dying. I thought about the fact that I was so heavy — that I couldn’t get off the floor without it exhausting me — and I thought about my father dying at age 32. At the time, I was four months away from turning 32. I thought about my mother having a heart attack before she even turned 50. I thought about my grandmother who has diabetes. I thought about how almost everyone in my family who had passed away had either done so from heart-related issues or diabetes, both of which I believed to stem from obesity. So to keep myself around longer and the only course of action I could think of was to lose weight.

I started trying to eat healthier and tried to start exercising. I failed! I couldn’t stop eating the wrong things, I couldn’t stop drinking, and I couldn’t figure it out. Then I saw this infomercial for P90x so I ordered it…and I failed again. I couldn’t even pass the fit test. So I sent it back. But I saw on this little card in the box the Beachbody website, so I checked it out, and I saw a program called Power90 — a beginner program for someone like me.

How I Lost It: I started Power 90. This guy talked about modifying moves you couldn’t do, which was great. And the biggest thing for me — it came with a simple food plan that I could understand and follow. And it didn’t taste like cardboard! In the first month I lost 21 pounds, and I was feeling better, I was eating better, I could do real push-ups, and my clothes felt looser. And I wasn’t drinking. Unfortunately, one day while I was working out, I felt a pop in my calf and I couldn’t stand on my leg. My doctor told me I had torn my calf muscle and that I wouldn’t be doing anything on my feet for six to eight weeks. When I heard that, I immediately wanted a drink and some food. I felt like I was going to lose all my progress. But, thanks to my fiancee Casey, I didn’t. Instead we started a program called Turbo Jam that Beachbody had accidentally sent me when I ordered Power 90, and they had told me to just keep. I figured out the I could sub some of Chalene’s workouts in for the cardio of Power 90 and this would keep me from doing any high impact stuff, since I could modify Turbo Jam to be able to keep going. I finished Power 90 with a total weight loss of 51 pounds and a better understanding of myself.

I then decided to give P90X a shot again, so I started my next 90 days of hell! Once again here was the fit test, but this time I could do some of it! So off I went. This program had its challenges for me — the food plan seemed daunting at first, but eventually I figured it out, and had to teach myself how to eat more! It sounds crazy, but I was eating more than 3,000 calories and still losing weight! Every week I got stronger and saw more improvements. Over the 90 days I lost another 21 pounds.

During the next year, I did hybrid programs of P90X and Turbo Fire, another round of P90X and I lost another 49 pounds. I learned what I was capable of, I learned what my weaknesses were and had started to decided that I wasn’t doing this to be selfish anymore but I was doing this for my family, and for anyone that I might accidentally inspire. I was doing this to be an example for my kids, to give my fiancee the man she deserved, and to come to a somewhat-OK place with myself.

Seventeen months later, I still haven’t had a drink, I quit smoking, I don’t drink soda and I have lost a total of 128 pounds.

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Celebrity Abs: Pink does P90X and yoga six days a week to keep her ‘man abs’

PINK

 

Pop rock singer Pink has a knack for hot body abs and is popping up on the cover of Women’s Health in 2010 to share her F-AB-ulous secrets!

The mag, slated to hit the stands on December 22, has Pink revealing her nickname for her own midsection – “man abs” and how she gets them.

“An hour of cardio, an hour of P90X or yoga, and then a half-hour of warm-up [during show rehearsal],” the 30-year-old music artist said of her workout fix. “Six days a week.”

As far as taking days off, PInk always has work on the brain and tries to work in a workout that works with her day job.

“I try to make it a show day so I’m still getting cardio. I have to be able to run up those stairs as many times as I do and be able to sing at the same time. I’m an asthmatic. I have to be on that treadmill singing to get my lungs right.”






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How to Bust Your 6 Biggest Excuses

Bust

By Kara Wahlgren

When you’re feeling overworked or overwhelmed, it’s easy to find an excuse to skip a workout…or two…or a whole week’s worth. But don’t let bad excuses get in the way of good intentions. Here’s how to keep them from derailing your fitness routine.

THE EXCUSE: “I’m too busy!”

Instead of letting your endless to-do list take priority over your health goals, treat exercise like any other important task. “It’s about prioritizing and planning ahead. Set a time and schedule it, as if it were a dental appointment,” says Jimi Varner, a trainer on MTV’s I Used to be Fat series. Of course, there will be days when you really are too swamped to squeeze in a full workout—but that doesn’t mean you should skip it altogether. Instead, try to carve out a few minutes to break a sweat. “If you have just 10 minutes, it’s still progress,” Varner says. “It doesn’t have to be an hour and a half, so knock it off.” Go outdoors and do a few sprints, or try a time-crunch-friendly program like FOCUS T25® or P90X3™.

THE EXCUSE: “I’m beat.”

Whether you’re sore from yesterday’s workout or drained from a long week at work, don’t bail out just because you’re low on energy. Start slowly, and gauge how you’re feeling after the first few minutes. “It’s okay to exercise at a lower intensity for a shorter time. Start doing it, and really listen to your body to see if this is nurturing or punishing,” says Michelle Segar, PhD, Associate Director for University of Michigan’s Sport, Health, and Activity Research and Policy Center and a motivation and behavioral sustainability researcher. “This helps get people more in tune with their body and actually can improve their desire to move.” Promise yourself you’ll do the first five minutes of your workout—once you get going, chances are you’ll go ahead and push through.

THE EXCUSE: “I’m broke.”

When you’re on a tight budget, it can be hard to justify the cost of a monthly gym membership. But you don’t need Globo-Gym to get in shape. “Walking is among the best ways to move, and you can do it anywhere,” Segar says. And Varner suggests picking up furniture movers (usually under $10) and using them for lunges or mountain climbers. And, ahem, we can recommend a few DVD training programs that won’t break the bank.

THE EXCUSE: “The gym is intimidating.”

Man Lifting a WeightYou might feel like everyone’s staring at you, but the truth is, they’re probably way too busy worrying about what they look like. So get out of hermit mode and go build a support system. “Everybody you see in these classes was once in your shoes,” Varner says. “They understand how you feel and the courage it takes to be there. And they will be more than happy to help and be supportive and friendly.”  If this IS true….you can do an AT HOME WORKOUT….

THE EXCUSE: “I’m bored.”

If you do the same workout every…single…day, it’s easy to fall into a rut. But there’s no rule that you have to stick to a rigid, repetitive fitness regimen. “You can change up any part of your routine,” Segar says. Renew your enthusiasm by starting a new program, joining a new class, ditching the treadmill for a hiking trail, or making a friendly weight-loss wager with a friend.  With Beachbody their programs offer a lot of variation and keeps the workouts interesting.  One day it’s YOGA and then the next day Strength training ect.  Check Out What Beachbody Has to Offer. 

THE EXCUSE: “I’m dieting instead.”

Just because you’re counting calories, it doesn’t mean you have carte blanche to chill on the couch. “Diet alone works well when weight loss is the goal, but adding exercise to the mix can enhance the results,” Varner says. “Exercise has countless other health benefits than just weight loss—you’ll look better, feel better, sleep better, have more energy, and be more productive at work and home.” And with all those benefits, why would you want to make excuses?

3 Reasons Why You Should Workout at Home

exercise_at_homeI wasted a lot of time working out at a gym. Not only did I waste a lot of time, but I also wasted a lot of money. Especially in this tough economy, it’s time for you to forget your gym membership and switch to working out at home.

The first reason why you should start working out at home is fairly obvious: it’ll save you money. Gym memberships can cost up to $400 per year. Instead, you can start training at home with with your bodyweight and a pair dumbbells for under $100.

The second reason why you should start working out at home is that it’s more convenient. You don’t need to drive down to a gym. You can just wake up in the morning, and pump out a few pushups. Or you can come home from work, walk into you garage, and start lifting some weights.

The third, but certainly not the last, reason that you should workout at home is that it saves you time. We’ve already eliminated the need to go down to a gym, so that’ll save you at least 30 -60 minutes of travel time.

However, what about the time it takes you to wait for piece of equipment? Most people go after work or during their lunch break. During rush hour,every one’s using everything! If you go to a popular gym such as Golds or LA Fitness, then you’ll probably end up waiting another 30-60 minutes just for the equipment to free up.

So with home workouts, we’re talking about convenience, time saved, and most importantly, money saved.

Beachbody offers alot of At Home Workout Solutions.  Three of Beachbodys New Programs also offer the opportunity to get in and get your workout done in 25-30 Minutes.  Although they are done Quickly…they do not skimp on Results.  You can read about these programs on this website.  To learn More about the Programs click on the Links below.  Focus T25, P90X3 and 21 Day Fix.  Pick a program and get started TODAY!!

 


GET IT DONE: IN  25 MINUTES A DAY!







How To Use P90X To Build Mass

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GET ONE OF OUR P90X Programs.  P90X is for MASS.  P90X2 for Athletic Performance.  P90X3 for Getting that ultimate 6 pack and Cutting Weight Fast!

Guys have a thing for mass. It’s hard to explain, really, but boys seem to grow up wanting nothing more than to be big. Guys want speedboats and trucks, and they want to look like the Hulk®, regardless of what their wives may think of green skin. If this sounds like you, here’s the article you’ve been looking for: customizing P90X for mass.

Even if mass is your only goal, make sure to read the other articles in the series on customizing the X. The principles discussed in these articles will be put to use here. To look like the Hulk, you don’t need to be a physicist who’s accidentally exposed to gamma rays, but you do need to consider science as we know it, particularly the question, “What is mass?”

What is mass?
Because many of our Success Stories, not to mention Tony, aren’t exactly skinny, we must begin by defining mass—something most of you are looking for more of. Physics-related talk about inertia, gravity, and force aside, as we’re using the term here, mass simply means size. As in the root of the word massive. A program targeting mass is concerned with one thing: muscle growth (from here on in referred to as hypertrophy), and a lot of it. In a training cycle for mass, we should target hypertrophy even at the expense of other fitness goals. P90X is not a system designed for mass. It’s designed for overall fitness, which means that ultimate gains in targeted areas, like speed, strength, flexibility, and muscle growth, are compromised to provide a program that improves all your body’s physical energy systems during one 90-day effort. We feel that this is the preferred training system, because it addresses the big picture. But if your picture is quite literally being bigger, you’ll need to read on.

Foundation
You’ve read about the capacity for improvement throughout this series, so here’s where I tell you to do a round of P90X as it’s designed before embarking on a mass-specific program. It’s healthier, sure, but it’s more than that. Training all of your body’s energy systems until they’re running efficiently increases your body’s ability to do, well, anything. And “anything” includes looking like Lou Ferrigno. Once you’ve done a round of the X and aced your Fit Test, the foundation has been laid. You’re ready to start gettin’ big.

Resistance
Tony loves the word specificity. He often uses it when referring to exercise movements, but we’re going to use it to refer to the equipment you’ll need. With mass as your goal, you’d better acquire specific resistance equipment. The simplest form is weights; however, mass can also be created by using other forms of tension, like resistance bands. The bottom line is that if mass is your goal, you’ll need to have more weight available than you’ve been using. Body weight and plyometric movements can be used effectively for strength training, but strength and hypertrophy are not synonymous. To make hypertrophic gains, you’re going to need to find ways to make your body fail at a given number of repetitions. You’ll want an array of weights and bands, and some extra devices like ankle and wrist weights, or a weight vest, to add resistance to all the movements you’re doing.

The difference between size and strength
Hypertrophy training simply increases the size of the muscle. Strength training increases the efficiency of the muscle. Large muscles have a greater capacity for strength. Absolute strength is the ability of the muscle to use all of its muscle cells for movement. People in sports dependent on strength-to-weight ratios target high muscular efficiency in their training, whereas those in sheer size-dependent sports will focus more on hypertrophy. Most sports are somewhat dependent on both size and strength, which are ideally improved during different cycles of training.

Periodization
The periodizational concepts that have been discussed in previous articles need to be explained here before a mass schedule is created. Remember that a standard schedule would look similar to this:
Foundation phase (Power 90® or what you did pre-X) + block 1 + transition/recovery + block 2 + transition/recovery + block 3 + recovery = peak (final Fit Test)

The difference here is that we’re going to structure an entire training cycle based only on hypertrophy. This means we won’t be setting up a peak phase. Over a long period of time, you’ll want to teach your muscles how to function more efficiently. We’ll get to this at the end. For now, we’ll just say that there’s still a periodizational approach to consider. You’ll still adapt, gain, and plateau over time, so we’ll need a structure to keep this happening. But the structure will be dependent simply on rep schemes (the number of repetitions that you target to bring you to failure) and progressive overload. The blocks of our 90-day schedule will each target a different number of repetitions, which you’ll want to aim for to induce failure. But because we’re not changing the schedule much, and thus creating less Muscle Confusion™, we won’t need such frequent recovery phases.

Progressive overload
Hypertrophy is all about creating progressive overload. To create muscle growth, you must keep stimulating the muscles during each workout. This requires that you add weight as necessary to create failure at similar points in time. (We use reps as a reference point but the actual measure is force over a given amount of time.)

Recovery
The more we can focus on hypertrophy, the more muscle we’ll gain. Since we only have so much energy to expend, this means we should spend less time working on other areas. This is where you’ll see the biggest differences from the traditional P90X schedules. When you’re not training for hypertrophy, your entire focus should be on preparing your body to create more hypertrophy. Therefore, the P90X mass schedule will have a lot of active recovery and flexibility work and very little intense cardio. This means we’ll spend more time recovering during each training block and taking fewer periods focused solely on recovery.

Putting it all together
Before we get to the schedule, here are some general things to consider. The first is pacing. Instead of following the kids in the videos, target your rep scheme (and push pause when necessary). Do each set to failure, or as close as you can get, without exceeding your targeted number of reps by more than a couple. If you lack enough weight to induce failure, try slowing down the movements so that you’re holding your contraction long enough that you’re fighting the pump. The force over time equation only works if you’re pumped silly. With this in mind, do not use the pause button simply to increase the time between exercises. You want to be pumped through the entire workout. No pump = no growth.

A good way to choose the resistance for each movement is to use enough so that you can only do the lower number of your targeted rep scheme. Once you can do the higher number, it’s time to increase the resistance. Do your repetitions slowly and with control. Speed is for power, not size. Focus on perfect form and only add weight when you can do each rep with great form. When you’re done, you’re done. You don’t need to finish an entire workout if you’re struggling. Once you lose the ability to move the weight or do the move in strict form, stop the workout. Any further training would only create more breakdown than you could recover from and increase your risk of injury.

Your diet
You won’t be burning as many calories as you would during the Classic schedule of the X. If you eat the same amount, you may gain more mass, but you’ll also gain more body fat. This might or might not be acceptable, so pay attention and adjust your diet as necessary. If you want mass, then you need to eat enough for your body to put on weight.

Block 1, phase 1
Weeks 1 through 3
• Day 1: Chest, Shoulders & Triceps
• Day 2: Cardio X, Ab Ripper X
• Day 3: Legs & Back
• Day 4: X Stretch; Ab Ripper X or Abs/Core Plus (from P90X® Plus)
• Day 5: Back & Biceps
• Day 6: Yoga X
• Day 7: Off
Targeted number of reps: 8 to 12 (focus on 10 to 12)

Block 1, phase 2
Weeks 4 through 6
• Day 1: Chest & Back
• Day 2: Cardio X, Ab Ripper X
• Day 3: Shoulders & Arms
• Day 4: X Stretch; Ab Ripper X or Abs/Core Plus
• Day 5: Legs & Back
• Day 6: Yoga X
• Day 7: Off
Targeted number of reps: 8 to 12 (focus on 8 to 10)

Recovery Block
Week 7
• Day 1: X Stretch
• Day 2: Yoga X
• Day 3: Core Synergistics
• Day 4: Kenpo X
• Day 5: Yoga X
• Day 6: X Stretch
• Day 7: Off
Block 2, phase 1
Weeks 8 and 9
• Day 1: Chest, Shoulders & Triceps
• Day 2: Cardio X, Ab Ripper X
• Day 3: Legs & Back
• Day 4: X Stretch; Ab Ripper X or Abs/Core Plus
• Day 5: Back & Biceps
• Day 6: Yoga X
• Day 7: Off
• Day 8: Chest & Back
• Day 9: Cardio X, Ab Ripper X
• Day 10: Shoulders & Arms
• Day 11: X Stretch; Ab Ripper X or Abs/Core Plus
• Day 12: Legs & Back
• Day 13: Yoga X
• Day 14: Off
Targeted number of reps: 6 to 10

Block 2, phase 2
Weeks 10 and 11
Same schedule as weeks 8 and 9
Targeted number of reps: 4 to 8

Block 2, phase 3
Week 12
Same schedule as weeks 8 and 9
Targeted number of reps: 4 to 6

Final note: This is an entire cycle of training based only on hypertrophy. To have an athletically efficient physique, you should do other training cycles that target different goals. Even if your only goal is hypertrophy, training these other systems properly will improve your body’s physical systems and increase your capacity for muscle growth, as well as the speed at which you can add or shed muscle and fat. So while you can tweak and reuse this basic structure over and over, it will also benefit you to get back to basics and do P90X Classic from time to time.