What man hasn't dreamed of displaying his six-pak abs at the beach? What woman wouldn't want tight glutes and shapely thighs?

There is still time this year to hit the beach and show off your toned body!

You can have all that by engaging a personal fitness instructor. S/he will teach you cardiovascular fitness fundamentals and muscle toning.

Take control of your body! Sculpt it, little by little, all while losing unwanted pounds.

Fat-burning is Best Done with Cardio Workouts

If your main fitness objective is weight loss, the best solution would be a high-intensity, short duration workout – the very definition of cardiovascular exercise.

Aerobic exercise is similar and results in the same effect – weight loss, but the focus of this type of low-impact workout is endurance, built through sustained, extended sessions.

A cardio routine should raise your heart rate to around 70% higher than its resting rate, and alternate between high- and low- intensity for the duration of the exercise session.

This type of equipment will work your heart:

  • treadmill
  • stationary bike
  • elliptical
  • stair stepper
  • rower

You will find all of these fitness machines in your local gym or fitness classes near me. They are all available for your home as well, usually at a fair price.

However, if you are not fond of working out indoors, you could always exercise outdoors. There, you can:

  • jog or run
  • cycle
  • speed walk, power walk, or race walk
  • Nordic walk

If you maintain your current daily calorie intake and engage in at least three intensive physical training sessions per week, you are sure to shed pounds all while improving your overall fitness.

Do you know you can get a personal trainer Toronto?

If you prefer to get fit outdoors, cycling is a good option
Cycling is a great way to build endurance and lose weight Source: Pixabay Credit: Skeeze

High Intensity Workouts – the Expert Regimen

Consider the effect of an intense workout on weight loss.

According to a study by the National Institutes of Health in America, alternating between bursts of high intensity movement and low intensity results in significant weight loss.

  • One participant group engaged in twenty-minute exercise sessions, in which they alternately sprinted and walked.
  • One participant group worked at medium intensity for forty minutes per session.

The results revealed that those participating in the first group – switching between high and low intensity lost significantly more body fat than the group that worked longer but steadier.

This method of training is called High Intensity Interval Training, or HIIT.

Pacing yourself in this manner, your heart has no time to get used to any particular level of activity and thus will burn fat – faster even than any classic cardio workout.

Warning! This type of high energy workout is meant for motivated individuals who have already attained a moderate degree of physical fitness.

If you suffer from any form of cardiovascular illness, we strongly discourage you from this type of workout.

Should you doubt whether your heart can stand a heavy burn, we suggest you attempt it only after discussing your overall physical condition with a health and fitness expert, and only under the watchful eye of a qualified fitness trainer at the gym, or at home with a personal trainer.

Heart first, or Muscles?

Any health and fitness expert will assure you that it is best to work your heart and musculature in tandem.

It is difficult to work everything at once, and some sports enthusiasts have a distinct preference for one over the other...

Still, it is best to do your cardio routine after your resistance training, for several reasons:

  1. Optimise the intensity of your workout session
    1. To tone and sculpt your body, you will work your muscles hard. It is always best to be fresh and at the ready, rather than risking dropping a kettlebell on your foot because you are worn out from your cardio routine
  2. Work fat cells loose
    1. Toning your muscles gives fat cells less to cling to. Once you destabilize them, it is simply a matter of riding a stationary bike or running on a treadmill to flush them away.
  3. A better use of lipids
    1. Your muscles get their 'food' from blood sugars and lipids that are stored in the adipose tissues among your muscle fibers. Flexing and stretching your muscles releases those lipids which, in turn gives you more fuel to work out longer and harder.

By working your muscles before doing your cardio, you are tapping into glucide reserves that actually drive and sustain intensive muscle movement.

Engaging in a cardio routine after a muscle burn ensures that you will burn body fat during your sessions with your certified personal trainer, not needed muscle fats.

Dont' forget proper nutrition!

After a particularly intensive session, be sure to take in plenty of protein in order to gain the maximum muscle mass.

That means you, Bodybuilders! For those of you working your pectorals, abdominals, lats, delts triceps, biceps, glutes and thighs, be sure to ask your expert in fitness education how to really muscle up without causing injury to any muscle group.

A certified personal trainer, one with Level 2, 3 or 4 credentials, specialising in kinesiology and physiology would be able to design an overall fitness program targeted to your goals, taking into consideration your current physical competency and your past sports activity.

Isometrics do not require any sports equipment
Isometrics use your body to build muscle tissue Source: Pixabay Credit: Hannah Wells

Include Isometrics into Your Workout Plan

Isometrics is a type of fitness training that reinforces muscular strength. They are ideal to work these muscle groups:

  • abdominals
  • glutes
  • dorsals – the muscles in your back

Discover why you should work out with a fitness specialist.

This type of exercise can help avoid muscle cramping, herniated discs or other back injury, and helps you gain a more streamlined figure.

Isometric exercises are ideal for those whose exercise regimen consists of swimming, cycling, or running because they will help you move more efficiently.

Why not integrate one isometrics session per week into your usual exercise program design?

There are hundreds of educational videos online that demonstrate various isometric exercises but the best way to learn them is most certainly under the instruction of a fitness professional.

S/he will show you the proper form and posture, so that you avoid rookie mistakes such as 'peaking' – glutes in the air while planking, for example.

Isometrics is a type of strength training that works with your body to build muscle and finally get that flat stomach you've always wanted, thanks to the long, flat characteristic of abdominal muscles.

Isometrics are also ideal for yoga enthusiasts and other stretching regimens to help keep the body in top shape.

This type of exercise is recommended for senior fitness programmes because they help prevent sagging in certain parts of the body, such as the stomach, pectorals and glutes.

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Get Your Concrete Abs Working With a Personal Fitness Trainer at Home

If your lifestyle is rather busy, you would get the best out of any fitness programme by engaging a personal fitness trainer.

An in-home training program would save you a lot of time.

Your fitness professional would first conduct a physical assessment, and then decide on a training regimen suited to your body type, aimed at objectives you will work to attain.

With training techniques outlined by your physical fitness coach, you will learn the proper poses and moves, all while avoiding injury.

S/he will demonstrate for you specific exercises designed to work target areas, such as pectoral or abdominal muscle groups.

Read also: why should you train with a certified fitness trainer?

Such a coach will espouse functional training: tailored to work individual muscles – upper abdominals versus obliques, for example.

Work Your Glutes for the Best Body Image

Regardless whether you are physically active, we recommend a training regimen targeted to the three most common problem areas: stomach, gluteal muscles and thighs.

Squats are the most effective move to build tight glutes and toned thighs!

Beware that this position is most often done incorrectly.

With guidance during your personal training sessions, you will be able to position yourself to the optimal degree in order to derive the most benefit from your work.

Your individualised Superprof fitness trainer will first demonstrate the move, and then position you correctly. S/he will counsel you on the number of reps you should do, how often to do them, and what type of squats you should practise.

You can squat with or without dumbbells, for example. Or, for a more intensive workout, you can use a kettlebell, working your deltoids while toning your thighs.

Strengthen your core with Pilates
A Pilates workout tones your body and refreshes your mind Source: Pixabay Credit: ArtCoreStudios

Do Pilates for (Mental) Health and Fitness

Joseph Pilates was a gymnast who believed that many human illnesses could be avoided by proper posture and breathing.

He developed a training technique designed to reinforce deep muscle tissue, while while working the skeletal muscles that support the spine and stomach.

The philosophy behind Pilates' regimen addresses mental health and well-being. It discourages a sedentary lifestyle, advocating action of any type.

Many certified fitness professionals host Pilates workout sessions online and upload videos you can follow, should you wish to follow any exercise programs at home.

Introducing Your New Personal Training Program

Do you monitor your pulse and steps with a Fitbit or other sports tracking device? Do you know anyone that does?

Such performance measuring gear has become essential to anyone concerned with physical fitness.

They are easy to calibrate and use, and keep a record of your daily physical activity: how many steps did you take? How many calories did you burn? Was your sleep sufficiently restful?

It will also catalogue how fast you run or cycle, and for how long.

The best function of this type of sports equipment is not programmed into it.

Wearing such a device is a powerful motivator, encouraging your to a healthier lifestyle. A mere glance at your wrist will reveal if you have been more active today than yesterday, and what your carbohydrate consumption is.

It maintains a record of your sports conditioning, something your coach will need to see when conducting your fitness assessment.

Naturally, it is no substitute for personal fitness training – it cannot instruct you on proper form or number of reps.

For proper strength and conditioning, it is always best to find a personal trainer for a one-on-one workout, in gyms or health clubs. We also recommend a personal trainer for certain very demanding sports to avoid injury. The perfect personal trainer will know how to guide you to your goals, whether it be weight-loss, a better-looking body or building muscle.

Nevertheless, you can always opt for an online personal trainer.

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As an Englishman in Paris, I enjoy growing my knowledge of other languages and cultures. I'm interested in History, Economics, and Sociology and believe in the importance of continuous learning.