Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Question and Answers Part Deux

Hann writes: How much training do you need to do to lose weight?
My take on it:
That depends on a number of different variables. The aim of the game is to lose body fat and for most of us, but not all, there is usually a corresponding decrease in scale weight.
1. What your nutrition and caloric intake looks like. In the simplest of terms, if you eat crap, you look like crap! This does not mean you must forgo "sometimes" foods for the rest of your life but you do have to put it into perspective and realize that "sometimes" really means just that. I'm asked, how many calories do I need to consume to lose weight? That really depends also. I'd prefer to see someone being very active and consuming more rather than going the starvation route. If body fat loss is your goal, aim for no more than half a kilo (or a pound for my American friends) per week loss.
2. Your level of fitness to begin with. Fit bodies utilize fat better than unfit bodies (see post below)
3. How hard you train. You need to train hard enough so that your muscles really do need to recover. There is a high metabolic cost associated with recovery. In every day terms, when you train, you need to do it with intention, and at a level congruent with your current fitness levels etc. You should be looking for progression and improvement every few training sessions.
4. What type of training you do. Neglect strength training at your peril! Most women seem to do best with a 60: 40 cardio/strength training split. Strength training raises your metabolism if you add lean muscle to your frame and there is a high metabolic cost in recovering from hard sessions. Again, when you train, do it with intention! You "become" how you train, so don't faff around!
5. In terms of how long, this depends on your goals. Endurance athletes obviously need to train with longer distances in mind. If body fat loss is your goal, you are best off thinking about quality over quantity. A 30 minute focused workout is better than 60 minutes of wandering around the gym.
Let me know if that sheds any light.

1 comment:

Hann said...

I'm the first!

Thank you so so much for this, it does help.
Strengh training wise I train hard (DOMS for 2-3 days) but only twice a week. I do 35kg in lat pull and seated row, I can push 120kg in my leg presses and squat 15kg or lunge 10kg. Bicep curls a good 8kg, shoulders at 4kg, can do tri dips 'till the cows comes home but tri kick backs at 3kg dbs.

Cardio wise I can only run 10min at 7km/h so far. I swim maybe once a week or once a f/n and cycle also maybe once a week or twice, but I pull my 15kg boy in his buggy so it's a good work out.

I think my nurtrition is the problem.
I will have to have a look at it, I tried the Jenny Craig 5000kj per day plan for a bit and lost 4kg but still want to loose more.

So back to the drawing board for me.