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Ladies take note!

Posted on: 2019-07-26 13:27:09Fitness  |  Gym  |  Healthy Eating

LADIES, TAKE NOTE!

I know this has been written about before but I can’t stress just how important it is. For years we ladies have been told it’s all about the cardio and yes, cardio is important but anything over 45mins can be a bad thing. You want to look good, look athletic, feel good yes? Well both nutrition and training play an important part.

Calories – Ok, this is where an amazing amount of people go wrong. A very general guide for your calorie intake should be your bodyweight in lbs x 10 to 12. If you’re coming in under that then you’re not eating enough. This doesn’t allow you to break out the donuts thou! This means you need to increase your protein intake.

We’ve been subconsciously taught to starve ourselves to get thin but the truth is when you do this, you put your body into a catabolic state. Yes, at the start of your new starvation diet your body will change and get smaller but your body is an intelligent thing. It will adapt pretty quickly and soon the weight loss will stop, you will be lethargic, your body will hoard the food that you have given it and the fat loss will stop. Given a body composition test it will probably show that you’ve actually gotten fatter! So what do you do? You hop on a piece of cardio (already miserable and stressed) and pound away on it for a long period of time in the hope that the numbers will change……AND THEY WON’T!

Drop some carbs – Don’t eliminate them, you’re setting yourself up for failure. You need to know how much you’re eating but you also need to understand food and what they are made up of macro wise. We all know sweets, cakes, chocolate etc are sugar and therefore carbs and are bad for us but what about fruit, bread, pasta, potatoes. These are not as bad but are carbs and need to be monitored. Sites like myfitnesspal.com are good for logging your food and helping you take control of what you put into your mouth.

Increase your protein and don’t fear fat – Increased protein helps maintain the lean muscle mass that you have which keeps your metabolism up which means you burn more calories throughout the day. Fat doesn’t necessarily make you fat. While it’s true that certain fats are bad for you and will obviously lead to weight gain it doesn’t mean you should demonise all fats. Foods like avocado, nuts and seeds and coconut oil to name a few are really good for you and can actually help you to lose fat when you train.

Ladies, weight training WILL NOT make you bulky. If you are putting size on it’s probably because you are eating more. Allowing yourself a 16” pizza because you’ve just completed leg day is silly. There’s no way you’ve burned off enough calories in any training session to accommodate that monster going into your belly and you are now on a calorie surplus. I personally feel that your diet shouldn’t be so restrictive that you feel you need/deserve a treat day/meal. If you deprive yourself of everything that you like then you’re bound to crave it. It all comes back to being in control of your eating. It’s about a healthy balance. Allow yourself a little bit of what you like and you will have greater self-control.

Weight training has proven to:

. Increase bone density
. Improve strength and definition
. Prevent and control certain medical conditions such as diabetes and heart disease
. Help with weight management and decrease body-fat
. Better body composition/appearance
. Improve sleep and self-esteem

Train smart!

Get yourself a good 40-45min well-structured workout plan and stick to it. If it’s taking you an hour to do it than you are spending way too much time either taking selfies, checking Facebook or choosing what music to listen to. If you train at a busy time in the gym, always have an alternative choice for each exercise so if one machine or set of weights are being used you have backup and are not standing around waiting. You can throw some intelligent cardio into the fold. Either pick time at the end of a session or have a cardio day where you do either 20mins of HIIT (high intensity interval training) or 45mins of LISS (low intensity steady state) cardio. Anything over this can put your body into a catabolic state. This means your body is actually breaking down your muscle which leads to a lower metabolism which then leads to a higher fat %. Starving yourself will make you carry more fat and when you can no longer stand to starve yourself and go back to your normal eating you will gain even more weight than you took off. Scam diets that tell you to consume 500-1000 calories on nothing bar their shakes and pre-packaged meals are setting you up for failure. Don’t be lazy, take control!

If you take all of the above into account and implement them you will see a big difference without that inevitable miserable feeling you get from starving yourself and failing!

Louise Kavanagh