More is not always better


Often we find ourselves in a dilemma… ”Should I do more? One more set? Take another class? Wouldn’t MORE be better?”

In a fitness world were the trend is becoming, more weight, more rounds, more reps, we have to pause and ask “Why?” Why do we insist on running after metabolic classes, working our muscles to failure then doing even more reps or doing intense training sessions 6 days a week with no recovery. As much as we are trying to do good, we are actually being detrimental to our goal. This type of training degrades our precious fat burning muscle and usually decreases the quality of our workout. While the heart is in the right place, there is a hierarchy of effectiveness when it comes to what you should do in your available time.

At Inspire Personal Fitness we follow the “Hierarchy of Fat Loss”. Below is a list of different training methods, what they accomplish and a guide of what we recommend. Decide which type of workout person you are and follow the advice…

Weight training – builds muscle, boosts metabolism and burns calories.

Interval cardio – boosts metabolism (slightly) and burns calories. No muscle building! This does not help us with a long term metabolic boost.

Steady state cardio – burns calories. No metabolic boost, no muscle building!

Lifestyle activities – this would be walking, golfing, taking the stairs and any other activity that would boost our daily lifestyle calories. This could be very impactful if we lead an active lifestyle.

So, if you only have a few hours a week (3 or less) to workout, what training method is best? What is going to give you the most “bang for your buck”? This is our prescription for time allocation as it pertains to exercise.

If you only have 1.5 to 3 hours per week to exercise, you should only spend that time doing weight training. We have many clients getting great results in just three hours a week!

If you have between 3 to 5 hours a week to exercise, add interval cardio to your circuit weight training routine.

If you have between 5 and 7 hours a week to exercise, you can now add steady-state cardio to your circuit weight training plus your interval cardio.

If you have over 7 hours a week, add some light walking, bicycling and any other activities that you enjoy to just increase your daily calorie burn.

The Inspire coaches make your desire to train and be healthy greater than your excuses not to. – Kirsty K.

Why is weight training the best overall option? Let’s use running versus weight training as a good comparison. The adaptation to running will be efficiency. Example – running 3 miles for a true beginner would burn an enormous amount of calories due to the disruption and metabolism and new activity. Over time as the runner becomes more efficient it would take less energy and be less disruptive to the metabolism to cover the same distance. Great, if you want to run a faster 5K. Not so great if you are running for fat loss. How many of you have ever been passed in a 5K race by someone who looked to be in terrible shape? These are efficient runners. The adaptation to weight training, however, will always be an increase in lean tissue. An increase in lean tissue will result in a slight bump in your metabolism. The slight bump over an extended period of time can have profound effects on reducing body fat. How would you rather spend your time? Becoming a more efficient yet fatter runner, or lifting and becoming a calorie burning machine?!?

So glad I joined Inspire Personal Fitness and thanks for the awesome workouts !! – Patricia H.

The missing piece – RECOVERY. The problem with many of the workout trends going on nowadays is a lack of recovery. Many gyms and “boxes” stress the importance of going hard every day. The REAL PROBLEM here is the lack of recovery from these workouts. Because these workouts take extra time to recover from, since you are breaking down muscle tissue during the workout, you need to allow time for it to build back up in order to get the benefits.

SOLUTION – LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. More isn’t always better, in fact most of the time it’s definitely not. If you are breaking down your body without allowing for recovery you risk injury. Do not, at any point, push through pain! If you are NOT getting stronger, faster, more powerful or seeing improvement, then you are not recovering. You should see improvement with every workout. Follow these rules and ask your coaches to help you plan a workout schedule that fits your life so we can all reach our goals!

Learn more about how we can personalize your training and get you to your goals at your Complimentary Starting Point Session. Click here or call 828-258-1066 today!

Live life better,

Keith Wimsett