Snap Fitness Health & Fitness Blog

Jodi The Trainer's August 7th Facebook Live-Chat!

By: Jodi Sussner, Director of Personal Training

Jason – How much time do you need to recover from cardio before you do strength train with weights?

 

It depends on your training goal and the intensity of your cardio.  For example, if you are looking to add muscle/keep muscle, I would recommend doing cardio on separate days or separate time of day from your strength training.  When doing cardio, your muscle glycogen is depleted making it easier to lose hard-earned muscle. 

 

However, if you are looking to burn calories, increase endurance, stamina and overall cardiovascular fitness, you can do strength training with or immediately following your cardio.

 

Nicole - I got out of my hardcore spinning and lifting routine due to a severe anemia diagnosis. Now I need to start over. What's my best plan for quick fat loss to get back to where I was?

 

Your anemia can be related to your high intensity training so, first make sure that you check with your doctor and find out what the parameters of your training are.  That said, it’s next to impossible to combine “quick and fat loss.”  For your weight loss to come from fat, it is a slower process.  Focus on building muscle, having awesome nutrition, and doing enough cardio to burn fat and avoid burning muscle (with too much cardio). 

 

To get back where you were, focus on starting and staying consistent. “Small daily steps always look to the greater big picture of overall success, not quick fixes.”  Good luck!

 

Julie - What are the best sets of exercises to strengthen full body?

 

I love to work total body exercises – seems like the most functional use of strength, calorie burn, and the ability to work our bodies as nature intended.  That said, the following exercises seem to cover that nicely:

 

Plank Row – Hold a plank, place one dumbbell on the floor in between your hands, Take the DB with one hand (while you balance on the other and work to keep core strong and hips level), Pull the DB back, repeat on the opposite side.

 

Squat-Curl-Press – Keep 2 dumbbells on either side (on the floor), squat down and hold each DB, as you stand from the squat, curl the DB, once standing press the DB overhead.  Lower the DB to the floor with control and repeat.  Works the legs, biceps, shoulders, and core.

 

Spiderman Pushups – Hold a plank position, as you lower to a pushup, pull one knee up and out to the side until your knee meets the same side elbow, pause to hold, then press up from the pushup while pulling the knee back, foot down, ending in the plank position before repeating on the opposite side.  You can modify this by eliminating the pushup and just doing the lower body portion.

 

Ashlee - Have you heard of Adrenal Fatigue and do you recommend supplements for this?

 

Yes!  In fact, I have worked with many clients that have suffered through it.  It is extremely common in women, post childbirth, that also have a strong work-ethic, and drive.  This burning the candle at both ends negatively affects your hormones (adrenal glands being part of that).  When you exhaust your system, somethings gotta give.  I can’t recommend a specific supplement, but I can give you 2 options.  1.) Go to a doctor or naturopath that believes in this condition so that they can set you up on the appropriate course of action.  2.)  Do the free online supplement consultation with Truestar.  Click on the link to get started:  http://truestar.com/JSfitness . Within the consultation, you will notice questions that are specific to any condition, disease, or interest.  Check it out!

 

Carol - How can you tell if you've gained muscle weight? My weight has stayed pretty steady this summer but I've definitely toned and strengthened my muscles. I've also improved my cardiac health.

 

You can always have your body fat checked by a personal trainer in your club.  But ultimately, if you have noticed a difference in your clothing (fitting better), and your muscle definition, etc….you probably already know the answer to your question.  Congratulations on improving your cardiovascular fitness too.  Remember, the weight on the scale doesn’t paint the full picture.  Finding a balance between strength, cardio, muscle definition, and overall health indicates success – so, congratulations!

 

Melissa - What is the most effective way to lose fat in the abdominal area and hips and tone the glutes?

 

Focus on working the entire body by way of strength training, interval and intermittent cardio, plus proper nutrition.  Though you can’t “spot reduce” and lose weight in specific areas, while keeping weight in others, you can spot strengthen.  Focus on strength in the hips and core by choosing funcational and total body exercises.  I noted a few in the question above but, I think they would be great exercises for you as well:  

 

Plank Row – Hold a plank, place one dumbbell on the floor in between your hands, Take the DB with one hand (while you balance on the other and work to keep core strong and hips level), Pull the DB back, repeat on the opposite side.

 

Squat-Curl-Press – Keep 2 dumbbells on either side (on the floor), squat down and hold each DB, as you stand from the squat, curl the DB, once standing press the DB overhead.  Lower the DB to the floor with control and repeat.  Works the legs, biceps, shoulders, and core.

 

Spiderman Pushups – Hold a plank position, as you lower to a pushup, pull one knee up and out to the side until your knee meets the same side elbow, pause to hold, then press up from the pushup while pulling the knee back, foot down, ending in the plank position before repeating on the opposite side.  You can modify this by eliminating the pushup and just doing the lower body portion.

 

I would also add – deadlifts to work your glutes and challenge the stability of your core.

  

Khan - I just started working out. I’ve never been a work out person,  but have started doing cardio and planning to do a small amount of weights in the future. My goal is to gain weight, I am too skinny, I  weigh about 60 kg on a height of 6"3. What do you suggest I eat to gain muscle mass?

 

Good for you for choosing to add strength training to your routine.    Make sure that you are eating ENOUGH calories.  In a world of eat less, lose weight (calories in, calories out) it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that you actually need calories to grow muscle.  Without enough calories, even the best diet falls short.  Include at least 1gram of protein per pound of body weight, (or .035 ounces per kg of body weight), to ensure that you get enough protein.   Also, check with a personal trainer in your area as they can help you calculate how many total calories you should take in each day.  There is a minimum number called your ‘basal metabolic rate’ that you should not go under - good luck!

 

Lauren - I have been working out and eating healthy for about year and half.  I’ve lost about 80 pounds. I am hitting a plateau. I run a lot! I work out 6 days a week. I do weights. I am just trying to push through. Suggestions?

 

First off, congratulations on your successful weight loss thus far.  Now it’s time to focus in on body composition – is the weight on the scale the most important at this point, or are you looking to see muscle definition and strength?  If so, then consider having a body composition test done with a personal trainer.  They can show you how much of your weight is body fat and how much is lean mass (muscle, bone, etc). 

 

Since you run a lot, you may be losing muscle making it harder to maintain your metabolism and see ongoing weight loss as result.  Consider decreasing your running slightly, adjusting your calories, and focusing on strength training to see if this adjusts and changes your overall body composition.  More muscles, means a better ability to burn fat, and enjoy a healthier metabolism as a result.

 

Will - My son is 14, turning 15 in mid November. He is 5-10 at least 190 pounds. His coaches are having him lift weights and from the sound of it they are having lift one weight until he is fatigued, lower the weight do it again. Is this ok, I mean he is bigger than I am and hopefully will get taller

 

Hi Will –It sounds like your sons’ coaches are doing something called “drop sets” – where you work a set to failure, and continue an exercise with a lower weight to induce muscle failure again.  Doing this is shown to increase muscle size (hypertrophy)…IF that is the goal.  This type of training can also cause overuse injuries if it’s the only type of training done – just some pros and cons.  My question to the coaches would be, are you looking to increase overall size or function?  In sport, the challenge by many athletes and coaches is balancing the two.  In football for example, I can increase size but, can I move my newfound build with efficiency, power and speed and still have agility and injury prevention.  All dependent on their goal, his sport and/or position. 

 

Becky -  How long should I be doing cardio every day? HIIT 3X week and low intensity w/weights 2X/week. I want to do an adequate amount but not waste my time. 

 

I like the variety of intensity that you are looking to do – great work!  I would start with a lower time frame for your HIIT work – 20min and work up to 45min.  Beyond that, people tend to decrease intensity overall (thereby defeating the purpose of the High intensity intervals in the first place!).  So, 20-45min of HIIT, and 30-60min of your weights plus cardio.  Keep me posted on how it goes!

 

Carol - I've been nursing a shoulder injury that my Dr. said is probably an overuse injury. I hardly ever have pain from it anymore, but would love recommendations for what muscles to work to help finish up the healing.

 

Most injuries (especially due to overuse) are caused by muscle imbalances – your best bet is to work the shoulders and the stabilizing muscles around it.  For example, work your back (upper and mid) as much if not more than you work your chest.  Work your rotator cuff muscles as a way of balancing any work that you do with your shoulders.  I love:

 

Cable External Rotations – for the rotator cuff

 

Bentover lateral Raise – for the rear deltoids

 

Bentover Y lift – Again for the rotator cuff, and the lower trapezius.  Bend at the waist, keep spine long, holding light dumbbells (2-5lbs), lift your arms out to the side at about a 45degree angle, thumbs toward the ceiling.  You will look like you are making a letter “Y”.  Lower with control and repeat.  Do this while keeping core strong and shoulder blades down.

 

Toni - My 16 yr old daughter was in a weight training class last year and really bulked up and gained 40 lbs. Now she hates her body and weight. What can she do now to lose that bulk and weight?

 

I am sorry to hear that she hates her body and weight – teenage girls should feel empowered, strong, and confident after completing a course like that.  And honestly, she should be proud that she was able to strengthen and put on muscle.  That said, it is really tough for a teenage girl to put on 40lbs of solid muscle.   As a teen, she is likely growing, dealing with changing hormones and likely needs to balance her nutrition as well as cardio.  I would like to work with you both directly – private message me at Jodi the Trainer FB page please.  This way,I can give you more detail – thanks!

 

Christopher - Can you give me an idea of what would be good exercises for a heart patient?

 

Not knowing the details of the patient and level of cardiovascular health they are in, I wouldn’t want to give you advice.  Most heart patients are placed in a cardiac rehab program.  Have you inquired to a medical professional about this?   They can guide you and suggest the next steps far better than I could.   They will give you specific heart rate intensities to work at, how often, what type, and additional strength training recommendations as well.

 

Amanda - How can you tone flabby arms?

 

It’s all about strength training Amanda!  Strength training builds muscle, muscle boost metabolism, which then supports fat loss.  Work your arms by choosing 2-3 different exercises for each major muscle group (Chest, back, shoulders, biceps, triceps).  Do 2-3 sets of 10-12 repetitions.  Repeat this at least 2 times per week to get started.  Good luck!