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How much exercise do we really need?

You've probably heard the advice that you need to be exercising at least 5 days a week for 30 minutes a day but what does that really mean? Is that cardio, weight training, yoga or running? There are so many different types of exercise that it makes you wonder if a one size fits all approach even makes sense. So how much exercise should we really be doing?

The answer is that it really depends on what you're working towards. A marathon runner is going to have a completely different training routine to a yoga instructor. So here are some tips to determine what YOUR exercise schedule should look like...

Weight Loss- Cardio is going to factor in big time here but the most important thing of course is nutrition (I heard you all sigh reading that!) I've seen clients train the house down but they don't get the best results until their nutrition improves. Now that doesn't mean crash dieting, it can be as simple as reducing carbohydrate and sugar intake and eating more greens and proteins. Strength training is also super important for weight loss as improving your lean muscle mass means improving your basal metabolic rate (BMR) a.k.a improving your ability to burn more calories doing absolutely nothing! Boo ya! I would suggest 2-3 moderate to high intensity cardio sessions (20-30 mins depending on intensity) and 2 strength training sessions (45-60 mins each) per week.

Toning Up: Strength training will be your best friend if we are talking about toning up. You should be aiming to do a strength training session 3-4 days per week (45-60 mins each) and a cardio session (20-30 mins depending on intensity) 2 days per week plus yoga and stretching will also help your muscles to recover and lean out. I know you'll be disappointed (scoff) but again nutrition comes into play here. You can build beautiful lean muscles from strength training but if you aren't losing the excess body fat, you won't see them!

To live longer and live healthier (my personal favourite): Studies have proven that 150 minutes of moderate cardio or 75 minutes of high intensity cardio plus 2 resistance (strength) training sessions each week has been proven to keep weight under control, protect against injury and help reduce the risk of chronic illness. If this seems overwhelming then break it down even more. A little bit in the morning and a little bit in the evening. Every little bit counts and doing something is always better than doing nothing.

For more information on the right program for your training needs, contact me today to book your free 30 minute 'Find My Fitness' training session.

Alyssa x

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