I’ve been waiting this for a while. For the first time, the government is telling Americans to perform both aerobic and strength training exercises. Well….it’s a start. I mean, I honestly don’t agree with all the guidelines prescribed by the US Department of Health & Human Services in their 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans. Let me first tell you what their recommendations are, and I will then provide my own.
Image by Vince Outlaw
Recommendations from the Government:
- Perform 2 hours and 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 1 hour and 15 minutes of vigorous-intensity physical activity.
- Perform muscle-strengthening exercises that involve all major muscle groups on 2 or more days a week at a moderate to high intensity.
Ok, so lets say we have a busy guy with a family, 30 pounds overweight who decides to follow the government’s guidelines. He decides to perform 2 hours and 30 minutes of aerobic exercise per week,pluse two 30 minute sessions of weight training. That’s 3 hours and 30 minutes of exercise per week. Lets say, for arguments sake, Mr. Busy Guy Newbie ( MR.BGN ) here wants to exercise 5 days a week. will have to spend 42 minutes for each day at the gym. For a guy who works 9-5, with an hour break for lunch and a family to take care of, MR.BGN isn’t going to have time to exercise 42 minutes five days a week.
But lets get even more practical here: He’s not going to be able to recover on a five days a week schedule, unless he has someone handling his nutrition. Might as well just get a personal trainer.
Image by rob@tricentral
Without a personal trainer or nutritionist or some sort of expert hovering around him, MR. BGN will burn out after the first three days on his amazing exercise program. Cutting back to 3 day a week schedule, MR. BGN will have to spend 70 minutes in the gym. Now that’s a bit ridiculous. You can ‘t expect a beginner to just jump on such a rigorous training schedule. Naturally, I’m exagerating here. I’m sure somewhere in the government’s report they talked about gradually progressing into a program, but I didn’t read that part.
Recommendations from Shah Training:
- Perform 10 minutes of intense exercise, 2 to 3 days a week
That’s it! That’s my training program, right there. Now the word “intense” means different thing’s for different people. For example, 10 kettlebell swings with 35lbs does not do anything for me. Doesn’t even raise my heart rate. But for someone who has never trained before, 10 kettlebell swings will have a lot of positive effects on his body and will prove to be an extremely intense workout.
Image by Mars on Earth
I tell this story often. Back when I decided to train people, I had a 300lber friend from high school come over and do a little workout with me. Here it is:
Dumbbell Swing, 10 reps
Dumbbell Clean, 10 reps
I allowed him a minute rest after each round, and used only a 15lb dumbbell. He was ready to puke after 10 minutes and took him over 45 minutes and lots of water to recover. With that kind of workout, his metabolic rate increased, allowing him to burn fat for a few days after the training session.
I trained my father in a similar manner with the following workout:
2 rounds of:
Push Press, 10 reps
Bent Over Row, 10 Reps
2 rounds of:
Deadlift, 10 reps
Bodyweight Squat, 10 reps
My dad lost 7lbs in two weeks without following a super strict diet. I had asked him to simply start his days with oatmeal instead of oily indian food and cut down on restaurant food. That’s it. Simply solutions is all it takes.
Ok, I lied. I don’t have a training program for you guys. I just wanted to show you have simple it is to really drop fat without hitting a gym for hours on end. Purchase some resistance bands, or learn some bodyweight exercises. Choose two exercises, and perform them back to back for a few rounds with minimal rest. Or, if you want a really cool, concise training program. Check out 3xMethod.com.