As my clients get closer and closer to their health goals, they often wonder why the process starts getting harder. The habits are in place, but what worked before is suddenly not working. It can be extremely frustrating and even cause them to want to throw in the towel.
The good news is that as your body gets fitter and healthier, you can continue to make progress by mixing things up. What was a challenge for you a few months ago is now simply too easy. One of the best types of exercise you can do is high-intensity interval training. If you’re a member of my Personal Trainer to Go program, that’s what you’ve been doing. If you’re not a member, you can still get all the benefits by doing a challenging exercise followed by an easier exercise, so your heart rate stays up and you burn major calories. This type of workout is great because you can adjust it to your fitness level. If you’re a beginner, just marching in place for a minute might be enough to really get your heart rate up. If you’re advanced, you can turn the marching into jumping lunges. There are lots of ways to modify the exercises to push you through any plateau.
The next reason I love these workouts is because, according to a recent study in The International Journal of Obesity, challenging interval workouts dull the urge to overeat after workouts. For years I would spend an hour on the elliptical followed by some weight lifting, and I just couldn’t figure out why I wasn’t getting any results. My constant post-workout snacking never even crossed my mind. I assumed if I was really hungry after a workout, I must need lots of food. Fortunately, if you add in these higher-intensity bursts, your body will produce less of the hormone ghrelin, which is what makes you hungry in the first place. I know doing a tough workout and also having your appetite decrease sounds too good to be true, but I promise you that it works.
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