As Americans we like to take things to the extreme. If one pills works, two must be better! If one workout a day is good, 6 are going to get me there 6 times faster!
I’m writing this quick article to tell you that it’s ok to slow down… It’s not episode of Hoarders. It’s no wonder only 20% of this country belongs to a gym. This is because we prefer the all-or-nothing mentality. This is not a recipe for success.
Let’s make the comparison to an actual recipe. For the sake of irony let’s use cake. We’re baking a cake. I’m not a baker, but I know cakes are loaded with flour, sugar and butter (just in case your new here I actually like butter, way healthier of a choice than flour and/or sugar). But our cake calls for 2 cups of sugar. Who doesn’t love sugar in a cake? I sure do, but as a simple man following a recipe for a cake should I really be tinkering with it? If I were a baker I would know the exact limits of how much I can stray from those 2 cups of sugar and still produce the same tasting cake.
But we’ve already established I’m not a baker, so what are my limits. What if I know I liked a sweeter cake so I wanted to put in 2 ¼ cups of sugar? Consequences? Maybe, maybe not. How about if I put in 3 cups, 4, 5? The point is eventually I’m going to ruin the cake; so why bother straying from what works?
So how does that relate to exercise? Let’s say you come to me to lose 10 pounds. I work with you and we come up with a perfect plan to fit your goals and lifestyle. Let’s just say I told you to come do a training session twice a week where we’re really going to focus on getting you stronger. And for some extra metabolic stimulus I want you to do a couple of metabolic circuit style workouts because I feel that’s appropriate for you.
So that’s 4 workouts per week, about 3 total hours of focused purposeful exercise. That’s our two cups of sugar. We know that’s going to work for you; in this case I am the baker. So how far can we stray from that? Let’s say you loved the metabolic circuits and wanted to do an extra quick workout. Consequences? Maybe, maybe not. How about an extra hour, two hours, three hours of circuits? Or ‘cardio’, can I add in extra cardio?
At what point do you “ruin the cake?”
So to be sure you get the best results make sure you get your recipe from a real baker that can give you a great recipe regardless of the ‘ingredients in the kitchen.’ (Last analogy, I promise) And most importantly, stick to it! Even a bad workout plan followed perfectly is better than a great workout plan followed sparingly.
Best of luck with your Fat Loss Efforts.