When I decided I needed to stay losing weight, I thought I knew everything. I thought all I needed to do was do tons of cardio, and eat healthier. However, on my weight loss journey I learned some new things I wanted to share with you! Things I wish I knew when I first started working out!
Target Heart Rate –
I always thought that the harder you did cardio, the more fat you would burn. This is false. Your heart needs to be in a certain ‘zone’ or heart rate to burn the most fat. If you don’t get your heart rate high enough, you won’t burn fat.
If your heart rate gets too high your body will have to take energy from somewhere else, usually your muscles. If I would have known this I could have burned more fat and didn’t have to bust my butt doing cardio.
My target heart rate is 161, I want to stay as close as I can to this number while doing cardio. I use a polar watch it helps me keep track of my heart rate while working out. If you don’t know what your fat burning zone is, you’ll need your resting heart rate (RHR). The best way to get this is to take your heart rate first thing in the morning BEFORE you get out of bed. You will also need your max heart rate (MHR) For this you would do 220 minus your age.
Then you’ll want to use this formula – [(MHR-RHR) x (Desired %)] +RHR= Target Heart rate. For the desired percentage, the recommended range is 60-70%. This is how hard you want to push yourself. If you want to push yourself more, do 70%. If you are just starting a workout program you may want to start at 60%. The number you get will be your heart rate zone.
Meal Plan –
I used to go running every night. I always heard that cardio is how you lose weight! Cardio does have a big role when you want to lose weight, but SO DOES YOUR EATING! I ate like CRAP! Then I would wonder why I only lost 6 lbs!
When I started getting more active again, I weighed 191 lbs. I started running and my weight went down to 185 lbs. It stayed there for a few months. Finally I decided to get a trainer and he created a meal plan for me. I followed it pretty strict for 6 weeks and now I weight 165 lbs! That is 20 lbs in 6 weeks!
Eating is the most important factor when it comes to weight loss. I can tell you this now, being on a meal plan sucks. Eating the same thing EVERY SINGLE DAY is not my favorite, BUT I would do it again, because that is when I felt like all the weight started to come off and I feel great!
Lifting weights does not make you bulky –
I hate when people tell girls not to lift weights because they will look huge and bulky.
This is NOT how you will look!! People who look like this are trying to look like this! They take supplements and STEROIDS! If you lift weights, you will look tone. It is impossible to look like the girl above on accident.
Lifting weights helps burn fat –
Weight training will help you burn more calories during you workout. It is harder for your body to maintain muscle than fat. Because it has to work harder to maintain it, your body will naturally burn more calories. Lifting will also help you build bone density, and decreases the risk of you getting hurt while you are working out.
BMI is not important!
BMI is overrated. It isn’t important while you are trying to lose weight. DON’T freak out about the number! BMI is a number they came up to determine what fitness category you were in. They base it off your height and weight. They determine what a good weight is for your height, and tell you if you are underweight, normal, overweight, or obese.
However, MUSCLE WEIGHS MORE THAN FAT! You could be a girl with 18% body fat (which is super good for women) and it would tell you that you’re overweight. The number, I personally think, you should be focusing on is the Body fat percentage. This will tell you how much body fat you have.
I like to base everything off this number, because even the scale doesn’t matter if you’re all muscle! You’re going to weigh more, that’s just how it is. Don’t think you’re overweight because the BMI tell you that you are!
I hope these tips help! Let me know if you have any questions or suggestions for my upcoming posts!
Thanks for reading!
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