Exercise...20% of the solution

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     As Laura Korman, DC, DACBN discussed in this week's The Keto Minute - Exercise, although
exercise is necessary and important, it really is only about 20% of the formula for loosing excess body fat. The biggest culprit for having gained those extra pounds is probably the excess carbohydrates we’re putting into our bodies. Dr. Korman advocates living a clean and keto lifestyle to prevent the saturation of unnecessary and unfriendly carbs.


That being said, let’s discuss the 20% part of the solution for burning that extra body fat, which, of course, is exercise (ugh, that word again) or exertion, or just plain movement!


     So, get yourself a heart rate monitor, folks, and let's short-cut this whole exercise thing!

   Too much of anything isn’t a good thing, but we might have just the cure! It’s known as High Intensity Interval Training, or "HIIT." This is a faster, shorter, distance between the points of extra body fat and not. HIIT is an incredible alternative to traditional cardio workouts, with greater benefits!

   High-intensity interval training (HIIT) describes any workout that alternates between intense bursts of activity and fixed periods of far less-intense activity, or even complete rest.

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   Think about how little kids play. They run around playing tag, and then all fall down and laugh! Well, what we’re introducing is a bit more serious, but the same idea. For example, a good workout would be running as fast as you can for 30 seconds followed by walking for 2 minutes. Add to that a 3 minute warm up and repeat the example above five times for a total, 15-minute, fat-blasting workout. It sounds too simple to be effective, but there are proven benefits of HIIT!

   Research shows you can achieve more progress in a mere 15 minutes of interval training (done 2-3 times a week) than the person jogging on the treadmill for an hour at a time! (Note: A treadmill is NOT an appropriate or safe option or device for HIIT workouts.)

Benefits of a HIIT Workout

• Burn Fat: Not only do you burn more calories during a HIIT, you burn more fat in the 24 hours after a HIIT workout than you do after, say, a steady-pace run.

• Preserves muscle mass: While steady cardio seems to encourage muscle loss, studies show that both weight training and HIIT workouts allow you to preserve your hard-earned muscles, while ensuring most of the weight lost comes from fat stores!

• Good for the heart: Most people don’t get into the anaerobic zone (that lovely place where you can't talk and you feel like your heart is trying to jump out of your chest). After 8 weeks of doing HIIT workouts, subjects could bicycle twice as long as they could before the study, while maintaining the same pace.

• Convenient: HIIT is the ideal workout for a busy schedule. And according to a 2011 study presented at the American College of Sports Medicine’s Annual Meeting, just 2 weeks of high intensity intervals improves your aerobic capacity as much as 6 to 8 weeks of long endurance training.

• No equipment needed: Running, swimming, biking, jumping rope and rowing all work great for HIIT, but you don’t need any equipment to get it done. High knee stepping or anything plyometric, like marching in place, work just as well to get your heart rate up fast. In fact, dumbbells can make HIIT less effective because you want the focus to be on getting your heart to its max, not building your muscles.

• HGH increases: HIIT stimulates production of your human growth hormone (HGH) by up to 450 percent during the 24 hours after you finish your workout. This is great news since HGH is not only responsible for increased caloric burn but also for slowing down the aging process, making you younger both inside and out!

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   So get yourself a good heart rate monitor, and get ready to get your blood flowing! HIIT is a cardio session arranged as short bursts of very hard work. The whole point of high-intensity training is to kick up the intensity of your cardio. In order to qualify as true HIIT, you’ll need to push yourself to the max during every set. That’s why they're short, anywhere from 20 to 90 seconds, typically. It’s the opposite of going for a long run where you ration your energy in order to sustain the activity for a longer period of time.
 

     Numerous studies have shown that working your hardest is key when it comes to boosting endurance, increasing metabolism, regulating insulin levels, and losing body fat. HIIT can be more effective than other cardio approaches, when it comes to getting shredded. The HIIT routines that involve bodyweight work (e.g. push-ups) or added weight, such as kettlebells, medicine balls, or dumbbells, will tone your muscles while, at the same time, spiking your heart rate. HIIT will improve endurance, compliment strength development, and help get you shredded. 

     This is where your heart monitor comes into play. Take the number 220 and subtract your age, (if you are 50 years old, the target rate will be 180) and that is where you try to get your heart rate at, at the peak, or highest, then rest until it gets to 130, and then hit the exercise again.


    Sound like a lot of work? That’s the idea: Working harder = higher oxygen intake = greater calorie burn. And HIIT will help you burn more calories both during and after your workout, thanks to post work-out, exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC). Studies have shown that high-intensity cardio - the kind that leaves you out of breath - raises your metabolic rate to the point where you continue to burn calories even after the session ends - as much as six to fifteen percent more!


Taking breaks to rest is also a defining element of HIIT


     What particular thought might not spring to mind when you think about high-intensity interval training? Rest? But here’s the drill with HIIT: Rest periods between each set are an essential part of the workout - if you don't take time to recover, you're not doing it properly.


     Recovering before the next interval is essential, and here's the reason why. Forcing your body to
repeatedly acclimate between two very different states provides excellent cardio conditioning. The body works to adapt from the anaerobic (high-intensity) period to the low-intensity recovery period in HIIT. This workload results in high caloric expenditure, which can lead to fat loss


Rest periods are needed to prepare the body and enable it to truly perform at its maximum during the high-intensity segments.


     Now that you know the basics, here’s how to make sure your workout is HIITing the right note. The rules of HIIT are pretty simple: work really hard, rest, then work really hard again. You absolutely don’t need a fancy gym, workout plan, or even any equipment at all just find an activity that gets your heart rate up,and then apply the HIIT format to it.

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   Jump rope! Trampoline! Jog in place! We favor the bicycle or a stationary bike that has coasting ability! It is easy to go all out and then rest, in between, while coasting. “HIIT" it hard for a shorter time, rest, and keep it going!

   Look online for many free HIIT routines if that works better for you. Drastically reduce those carbs and add the exercise!

 

Get active and get healthy!  “...for a better brain, better body, better YOU!"

 

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*Note: As with any type of exercise, you should always check with your doctor to make sure you are fit enough to exercise.