The Best Path for Weight Loss
The shortest distance from Point A to Point B is a straight line, right? So when it comes to your weight loss workout, you want the “straight line” in the sense of what’s most effective. I mean, why workout only to have subpar results? Or worst yet- no results at all.
But you’d be surprised how often I see this. The people chugging away on treadmills for endless miles can literally be spinning their wheels when it comes to shedding bodyfat. My job as a personal trainer is to get clients from Point A to Point B, so there’s no sense in treating them like a hamster running on a wheel. That’s why my best path for weight loss is through the lactate system.
What is the lactate system? Well, it’s certainly not something I created. Jumping into the science for a bit, the lactate pathway refers to how your body responds to training. Ever do a moderate set of biceps curls? Feel that burning in your arms? That’s the lactate system at work. A lot of ill-informed people claim that this is lactic acid causing that burn, but that’s not true. But you’re not here for a biology lesson so let’s talk weight loss.
When your body produces a lot of lactate from hard training, your brain goes to work as well. A part of your brain called the anterior pituitary starts the process of releasing a hormone called growth hormone. This hormone causes the body to build muscle and burn fat at higher rate than normal. It’s the most bang for your back when it comes to exercise. Again, think straight line mentality. Strength coach Charles Poliquin popularized this form of training decades ago for the simple reason that it works.
Maybe you’re wondering why I’m picking on those poor souls running on the treadmills. The issue with long distance activity (running, cycling, etc) is that your body becomes more efficient with it. So as the weeks go by, you burn less calories as your body gets “better” at the activity. Your metabolism goes right back to normal shortly after the exercise is over, which is the opposite of lactate training. Keep it up if you want to be an endurance athlete, but its best to ditch it if you want to get lean.
So what does a proper weight loss workout look like? Simply pair an upper body movement with a lower body exercise. Your best bet is to pair resistance training with strong man training. Do the moves, and take a very short rest period. That short break is key: the brief recovery is used to overload your muscles.
In a perfect world, you would do your resistance training and strong-person training on separate days – they’re that demanding. But a workout for the busy executive would look like this:
A1. Narrow Stance Back Squat – 4 x 10-12, 4-0-1-0, rest 45 sec
A2. Wide Grip Sternum Pull Up – 4 x 8-10, 4-0-1-0, rest 45 sec
B1. Tire Flips- 4 x 40 sec, rest 35 sec
B2. Medicine Ball Slams – 4 x 40 sec, rest 35 sec
It looks easy on paper, but pairing two compound movements with short rest periods can be hell. But, hard work pays off. Do you want to get in shape or do you want to spin your wheels?