You’re probably checking in here on Mondays thinking to yourself, “where are all of Mary’s how-to weight posts and videos?” Honestly, I haven’t been to the gym to lift weights in weeks so I don’t have much to write about. With my view at Chastain Park in Atlanta above, who would want to work out inside?! That’s not to say I don’t lift weights anymore; my interaction with them is just different now. I’ll go into that more below.
The one thing I have been doing a lot:
power walking and jogging slowly.
And I can’t believe how much I love it!
If you’ve been reading consistently lately you know I started on a new workout program to train my body to burn fat. It basically requires I work out in Zone 3 (fat burning zone, which for me is when my heart rate is 145-165) 3 to 4 days a week and only push myself to my max (carb burning zone where my heart rate is 165-196) 2 days a week. For a girl like me who wants to kill it every workout, this sounded like a death sentence.
The Zone 3 workout has been more like a godsend.
It’s easier on my body
and makes my weight workouts more effective.
Here’s what I do: Strap on my heart rate monitor and hit the road for an 1 to 1.5 hours doing whatever I feel like. Carrying two pound weights in each hand, I’ll jog with my weights at 90 degree angles pumping my arms until my heart rate hits 162ish. Then I power walk doing arm-toning exercises until a muscle group burns. When my heart rate gets low or I get bored, I’ll start to jog again. Simply doing this and enjoying the great outdoors, I am not only burning 500-600 calories, I’m also training my body to burn fat and toning up my Kelly Ripa arms!
Obviously the key here is knowing YOUR heart rate zone 3 so get a trainer at your gym to moderate the running test for you and set YOUR v02 max.
Fitness magazine says that even a 15 minute walk during your lunch break is productive:
“Burning some 50 extra calories a day, the equivalent of a steady 15-minute stroll, can help determine whether or not you gain weight, experts say.
Go at a pace of at least three miles an hour, and make a game out of not stopping,” Cole says. (If you’re moving at that speed, aim for a takeout place about a half mile away.) “When you come to a red light, turn right and keep moving, even if it tacks on another block.” Grab your lunch and go.
Bonus: Unlike steamier exercise, power walking won’t give you the post-workout munchies, a study from Loughborough University in the UK finds. Do this most weekdays to rack up 45 minutes to an hour of exercise without even trying. For a mini butt-firming boost, squeeze your glutes while you walk.”
Click here for a list of links of Fitness Magazine’s power walking workouts.
My weight lifting workout has now dialed back to 2 days a week in group fitness classes instead of working out with a trainer. One reason is to save money, the other is to get my cardio and weights in the same hour workout. As I live in Atlanta now I can do BLAST900 two days a week and Stellar Bodies, weight lifting, or yoga one day. From what I’ve discovered, the key to these group fitness classes is to use HEAVY weights 10, 12, 15, and 20 pounds. This builds strength and keeps my heart rate high. I also have to keep moving, which is hard. Let me say, an hour of cardio and heavy resistance is REALLY hard, but it’s my chance to kill it.