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Your Step-By-Step Plan to More Fat Loss

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Life is not about surviving, it’s about thriving. The large majority of people are too afraid to step out into the world in the fear of getting hurt, mocked, or disappointed. This is no way to live. 

What does this have to do with fitness? EVERYTHING! The reason why so many people walk around unhealthy is because they have allowed their fear to create a life of comfort. Exercise is all about pain. If you can’t embrace pain, then you won’t be successful in the gym.

You might workout. You might go to cardio classes. You might be dieting. But how much of that is within your comfort zone? How much of that is true, actual PAIN? You’ve heard the quote: Pain is weakness leaving the body. So if you’re not going through the pain, then what you’re doing is staying weak.

Many believe that if you feel pain, then it means that you’re weak. The truth is that if you avoid pain, you’re weak. You are so fearful that the slightest bit of something uncomfortable is going to make you turn the opposite way. The prize could be on the other side of the door, but you won’t open the door, simply because of the fact that it’s too painful to experience the unknown.

At the gym I see people taking it easy. They’re just sitting there, pretending, believing, and thinking that they’re working hard. But what they’re really doing is taking it easy. If you haven’t at least attempted to lift more, push harder, and train at a higher intensity level than the week before, then you’re just wasting your time. You might as well go home and eat cheetos.

Look, there are things that are completely out of our hands, I get that. Sometimes you can do everything right, and still come short of your goal. I get that. And that disappointment is hard to deal with. But you have to remember your ultimate goal: a better future, better body, healthier attitude and an improved lifestyle.

Here is what I have to say to those people that are “stuck.” If you’ve been slaving away at your workouts for quite some time now, and are still not experiencing the results that you desire, then perhaps the problem isn’t the workout. Perhaps the real problem is in your attitude. You’re taking it too easy on yourself. You’ve become comfortable with being comfortable.

You need to try something new. And if you make a mistake, you’ll learn from it and get stronger. If you become disappointed, you’ll re-adjust and try again.

And if you’ve tried to follow all the rules of dieting, and worked out hard but still fell short of your goal, then I want you to change the way you think about that situation. Instead of getting down on yourself, think about it this way: the mistakes you made, the time you lose, and the money you spend – all of that is tuition for what you didn’t know. Most of us are willing to spend time and money to go to a university to learn something that may or may not help us in life, but we don’t see life as the ultimate university?

So the moment starts now to not be afraid of pain. Here is your step by step plan to making this happen:

#1 – Acknowledge the fact that you need to push yourself harder.

#2 – Write down your current workout.

#3 – Take 50% of your workouts, and replace them with something you don’t like doing. For example, if you love bodyweight circuits, but hate treadmill sprints, and you train 4 days per week, then do 2 bodyweight circuits per week, and 2 treadmill sprints.

#4 – Take the remaining 50% and set a goal you’ve never attempted before. So, lets say you normally do 3 rounds of 10 pushups, 5 pullups, and 20 squats. Take this workout and try to do 6 rounds of 15 pushups, 10 pullups, and 30 squats. Don’t give up until the workout is complete Go above and beyond, just one time to see if you can do it.

Keep working hard,

– Parth

P.S. Have you been feeling lately that you haven’t been pushing yourself hard enough? What’s your attack plan to fix this?

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Christmas Day 20 Minute Metabolic Calorie Burn Workout

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Hope everyone is having a great holiday season thus far. This is the crucial time between Christmas day and New Year where people begin to really think about their New Year’s Resolution, and what they want to accomplish for the following year.

If losing weight is on your list, then there is one important thing you need to decide: what method are you going to use?

Lets see, you can

  • Do some aerobics for 20 minutes and burn 140 calories
  • You can sit on the exercise bike for 20 minutes and burn 293 calories
  • If you prefer standing, then hit the elliptical for 20 minutes for a 201 calorie burn
  • ..you can do some yoga for 20 minutes and burn 70 calories

I’ve got a better option. Try this 20 minutes Turbulence Training metabolic workout:

3 rounds of:

  • DB Flat Chest Press – 45 seconds
  • DB 1-arm Row – 45 seconds per side (rest 15 seconds between each side)
  • Total Body Extensions – 45 seconds
  • Rest 15 seconds between each exercise
  • Rest 60 seconds at the end of each circuit

Then, 2 rounds of:

  • DB Reverse Lunges (alternating sides) – 30 seconds
  • Standing DB Overhead Press (alternating sides) – 30 seconds
  • Kettlebell Swings – 30 seconds
  • No rest between exercises
  • Rest 30 seconds between each circuit

That shouldn’t take you more than 20 minutes. If you loved that workout, then you’ll love these workouts.

Get ready for your New Year’s goals!

-Parth

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Putting Cardio to the Test + A Better Solution

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You want to have certain criteria in place when choosing the kind of training you want to choose when trying to lose fat. For those that have busy lifestyles, the best criteria is:

  • Must be time-efficient
  • Must elevate metabolic rate for prolonged periods of time
  • Must be fun
  • Must be safe

So lets put three of the most popular forms of cardio to the test:

Walking

Walking is often the exercise of choice for beginners (regardless of age or gender). Initially, most beginners will get results with walking because it’s an increase in their level of activity.

After some time, just like with any form of exercise, results will diminish. So, the next course of action is to increase the distance of the walking, and frequency of the walking. But here’s the problem: you can’t increase the distance and frequency for ever!

You have a minimal amount of time to devote to exercise per week, so what do you do?

A better option:

Although you will eventually face the same issue with jogging and then running, I do believe these are beneficial tools to improve your endurance, and get your mindset towards more intense forms of exercise.

So, if you’re walking right now, start speeding up the pace with power walking with an eventual transition to jogging. After 3-4 weeks of jogging, move onto running. Then start implementing sprints and interval running into your program!

Here’s a great sprinting program to try when you’re ready: Sprint Conditioning by Mike Whitfield

Aerobics

Another popular form of cardio is aerobics. Aerobics comes in the form of step classes, aerobics classes, Zumba, etc. Aerobics shares a similar problem with walking: it does nothing for your metabolism.

So, initially the program might work for your, but if you’re not engaging in movements that elevate your heart rate, or those that engage your muscles, you won’t get the metabolism-boosting benefits you see with strength training or sprinting.

A recent remedy we’ve seen is combining aerobics with light-weight dumbbells. This is an ok solution, but at some point your body will become strong enough so that the light weight dumbbells become ineffective.

A better option:

Slowly start incorporating a session of full-body strength training. So, if you’re doing 3 days of aerobics, drop one day and make that your full-body strength training day.

A great program that provides the perfect balance between strength and cardio is Turbulence Training. Click here to check it out.

Spin Class

Doing intervals on a bicycle is perfectly fine, but in recent times fitness instructors have started adding in all sorts of crazy movements to make the classes more fun. Here is sample video of what I mean:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=COlQf7fG2kA

Some unnecessary movements I’ve seen in the video:

I’ve read about the dangers of standing up while spinning, but I won’t go into that here, simply because I am not qualified to make that judgement call. But I will tell you that doing ab crunches from the bike, standing up while boxing, swinging your arms, arms behind your back – all that is absolutely unnecessary and detracts your mind from what’s important: getting an intense workout. Here’s a great article from a spin expert that comments on this workout.

I’ve also seen videos of people doing hip hop moves while on the bike. I’ve also seen videos of people doing bicep curls while on the bike and other dumbbell movements.

A better solution

Instead of spin classes, perform straight intervals on a bike or treadmill consisting of 30 seconds on of intense effort, followed by 30-60 seconds of lower-intensity effort.

Do that for 20 minutes, and you’re done.

Lessons Learned:

Lets go over some key points from this article:

  • Research your method of exercise before embarking on it
  • Make sure workouts are safe
  • Perform full body strength training at least twice a week
  • Build yourself up to interval training

With GREAT gratitude for you every single day,

– Parth

PS – Stay safe!

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2 Simple Workout Strategies to Break Through a Fat Loss Plateau

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Earlier this week we discussed 2 simple strategies you can use to break through a fat loss plateau. Today, we will discuss a few strategies you can apply to your workouts to help restart fat loss.

#1 – Switch up your Workouts

By switching up your workouts, it literally means trying something completely new. So, if you’re someone who has been walking for weight loss, perhaps it’s time to switch gears and start sprinting.

Here are some more ideas for workout “switches” –

  • Cardio Interval Training switch to Treadmill Jogging
  • Boxing-Style Training switch to Plyometrics
  • Bodyweight Circuits switch to Traditional Bodybuilding-style Training
  • Sandbag Training switch to Cardio Interval Training
  • Treadmill Jogging switch to Yoga

Some of these switches might seem strange, but the whole idea is to do the opposite.

#2 – Reduce your Rest Time

Something as simple as reducing your rest period can have a huge impact on your workout. So if you’re resting 60 seconds between each set, then rest 30 seconds between each set. You will most likely need to reduce your weight slightly, but your heart is going to be pumping. It’ll feel like you’re doing cardio and weights at the same time.

#3 – Get a Personal Trainer…or train with a partner

My girlfriend uses trainers, and it’s hard to find the right one. I’ve personally had more luck with a training partner that has similar goals as you do. Whether it be a trainer or a training partner, try to find one that isn’t afraid to yell at you. The whole purpose is to motivate you to lift more and train harder.

#4 – Take a Break

Sometimes you’re pushing so hard, and dieting so well that your body just needs a break. Remember, what you are doing is placing stress on your body and mind. Just as your body shuts down after prolonged periods of intense work, your body will stop responding if you stress it out too much.

Think about finals week, and how you feel after weeks of intense studying (or cramming). Take a week or two off from the gym. This is a schedule week off, so you’re promising yourself you’re going to return to the gym after that time period. Don’t let this turn into a permanent time off.

Use these strategies, along with the diet strategies discussed earlier this week, to finally break through your plateau!

– Parth

P.S. Today’s article was brought to you by the Shah Training Resistance Band Set. Click here to learn more.

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Use Supersets Training to Torch Those Love Handles

 

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Stubborn fat is a bitch. Through my years of through research, I’ve discovered that there is only one real way to destroy stubborn fat: make your workouts more intense! Work harder. Sweat like you’ve never sweat before, and really kill yourself under those weights.

My all time favorite training methods is superset training. Superset training is a common bodybuilding method where two or more exercises are performed one after another. There are many ways you can set up a superset workout. Here are some of the more popular methods:

  • Work the Same Muscle – Perform two different exercisess for the same muscle group.  – Example: set of pushups followed by set of decline pushups.
  • Isolation/Compound - Perform an isolation movement, followed by a compound movement. – Example: set of drag curls followed by set of power cleans.
  • Antagonistic Supersets – Perform two different exercises for opposing body-parts. – Example: set of pushups followed by a set of pullups
  • Upper Body/Lower Body – Perform a set of an upper body exercise, followed by a lower body exercise. – Example: set of pushups followed by a set of squats
  • In-Set/ Hybrid Moves – Combine two movements that flow well together and work them in a set. – Example: combine pushups and squat jumps to create burpees

Benefits of Superset Training:

  • Allows you to perform the same amount of work in a shorter period of time.
  • Adds excitement to your workout, and prevents boredom
  • Provides an incredible muscle pump, causing greater muscle growth
  • Allows you to train like an athlete forcing you to work hard

Why Superset Training Helps you Burn Fat and Build Muscle

The muscle pump you feel is Lactic Acid production. Lactic acid is a major player in the way our bodies generate energy during exercise.

What is Lactic Acid?

  • Formed from the breakdown of glucose when glucose from dietary carbohydrates reaches muscle after bypassing the liver and entering general circulation.
    • Goes back into the blood and returns to the liver. Here it is used to make liver glycogen.
    • Known as the “Glucose Paradox.”

What does Lactic Acid Do?

  • Fuels glucose and glycogen production in the liver
  • Helps us use dietary carbohydrates more efficiently
  • Serves as a quick energy fuel preferred by the heart and muscles
  • Important to mechanisms involved in how we adapt to stress
  • Important key to athletic success in high intensity sports
  • Stimulates testosterone production
  • Signals release of human growth hormone from pituitary gland
  • Can be transported between cells to supply additional energy for work

Why Do I feel the Burning?

  • The burning sensation comes from hydrogen ion, the acid in lactic acid which interferes with electrical signals in nerve and muscle tissue. Hydrogen ion is made when lactic acid splits into lactate ion, and hydrogen ion.
  • When Lactic Acid enters our blood faster than our ability to remove or control it, hydrogen ions begin to lower the pH of muscle, creating an acidic environment. This process interferes with our performance.

superset training

What is HGH?

  • Human Growth Hormone, or HGH is a naturally producing hormone in our bodies.
  • Plays an important role in regulation of body fat levels, immune system, muscle mass, recovery, and other bodily functions.
  • HGH is present in the body at a rate of 500 micrograms in the blood between the ages of 20 and 30.
  • As you age, HGH in our bodies starts to decline, leading to a steady loss of muscle mass, skin elasticity, fat gain, and many other physical changes.
  • The daily production falls below 60 micrograms at age 80.
  • Produced by the anterior pituitary gland, stimulated by the Hypothalamus.

Benefits of HGH

  • Promotes and increases the synthesis of new protein tissues. This aids in muscle recovery and repair.
  • Involved in the metabolism of body-fat and it’s conversion to energy.
  • Improves sleep patterns.
  • Produces more energy.
  • Improves sexual performance.
  • Build stronger bones, and reduces osteoporosis.
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Improves cholesterol profiles
  • Slows aging
  • Reduces the risk of Developing Type 2 diabetes

The Connection Between Supersets, Lactic Acid, and Growth Hormone

  • Short, intense bursts of exercise work best to stimulate the natural production of growth hormone.
  • Supersets training is a form of intense exercise which releases Lactic Acid as a method of providing energy for the muscles
  • When Lactic Acid splits into a lactate ion and hydrogen ion, the hydrogen ions begin to lower the pH of muscle, creating an acidic environment, as discussed earlier.
  • When the pH is lowered, it triggers a release of HGH as a way to aid in muscle recovery and repair.
  • The more HGH you release, the bigger and leaner you’ll get.


How can I Design a Supersets Training Program?

  • Best method for fat loss is to use upper/lower split
  • For a three-day per week program, Choose six exercises, 3 upper body and 3 lower body
  • For each day, choose one upper body exercise and one lower body exercise.
  • Organize the exercises using the templates below

Superset Training Templates

  • Perform 21-15-9 repetitions of each
  • Perform 3 rounds for time
  • Perform 4 rounds for time
  • Perform 5 rounds for time
  • Perform maximum rounds in 20 minutes
  • Perform 50-40-30-20-10 reps of each
  • Use inverse pyramid scheme, such as 10-1, 9-2, 8-3, etc.

BONUS TIP: Hybrid Superset Training

  • A hybrid is a movement where two or more exercises that flow well together are combined to form a new exercise.
  • Some examples include burpees (push-ups + squat jump), thruster (front squat + press), and sumo deadlift high pull (sumo deadlift + close-grip upright row).
  • These movements can be seen as being a form of supersets, as they incorporate two different movements performed back to back without rest.
  • Hybrid Superset training is simply performing two Hybrid movements back to back as supersets.

Since you’re serious about losing fat, you already work hard. If you’ve been pushing it hard in the gym, then just push a little bit harder. There is no other way around it. Be patient, and keep going.

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Double Kettlebell Complex Workout – Mr. Clean Squared

 

Description

Use this double kettlebell complex to pack on metabolism-spiking muscle to burn fat over the holidays.

STEPS

  • Use 2 kettlebells of the same size that you can comfortably press for 6-8 reps.

Perform the following complex without putting the kettlebell down

  • Double KB Clean x 5
  • Double KB Front Squat x 4
  • Double KB Clean x 5
  • Double KB Press x 3
  • Double KB Clean x 5
  • Double KB Front Squat x 2
  • Double KB Clean x 5
  • Double KB Press x 1
  • Double KB Clean x 5

Rest 90 seconds between complexes

Perform 3-5 rounds of this complex?

 

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How can I build an effective fat burning workout plan?

In recent years, a new industry has been given birth: the factual-sounding fluff-full fitness information industry. You read that right. Now, more than ever, you have self-proclaimed YouTube buffs promising you extraordinary results in an extraordinary amount of time.

No one wants to tell you the truth: that it takes hard work, consistency, and desire to push yourself to the limit to help you attain your weight loss goals.

After a long hiatus on developing new content, I’ve decided to give you some old-school, straight up, no-nonsense information on how to get solid results. Lets start out with three simple principles to get the ball rolling:

Principle One: Strength Train

In our YouTube star era, everyone is doing high intensity bodyweight circuits, and swinging Kettlebells back and forth. Even though I love that the rest of the world is catching onto the ideas which compelled me originally start my blog, I am also baffled at how many completely avoid actual strength training.

Even if you were to lose 20-30 pounds off, you still won’t look good if there is no muscle underneath that fat! And yes, Kettlebells and bodyweight training WILL help you gain muscle, but only if it’s done in a certain way. Circuit-training alone is not enough. In addition, there are numerous health benefits associated with strength training, which I’ve listed here.

Principle Two: Metabolic Conditioning

Metabolic conditioning, metabolic resistance training, interval circuits, circuit training – it’s all…more or less…the same thing. The YouTube coaches are coming up with new names for the same thing. All you need to know is that when you perform 3 or more exercises in a row with little to no rest in between, it works and it hurts! There are many creative ways you can design such a program. How far you will push yourself depends on how crazy you are. Over the years, I’ve written a full guide on metabolic conditioning, and how you can use it for your goals here.

Principle Three: Eat More

When you start working out hard, you’re going to get hungry. Some people think they should stick to their pre-determined caloric allowance. Don’t do that. You’re hungry because your body is trying to recover from your intense workouts. Your metabolic rate is booming, and the worst thing you can do at this point is eat LESS. So, eat more! Here is a great article which helps you maintain a healthy metabolic rate while you’re training hard.

In the next few weeks, I’ll be churning out some more back-to-basic type content…so stay tuned!

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Announcement: Shah Training is looking for Mind/Motivational Bloggers

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We’re looking for a blogger that write posts that really motivate and ignite the reader to get up and exercise. If this describes you, then you need to write for us!

The description and how to apply are below:

Description

If you have your own blog, own a training studio, or work in a gym –  then this is your opportunity to get exposure.

You’ll produce blog posts focused on inspiring an individual to stay with their training and diet. Of course, you are free to write on other topics as well. Each article will be approximately 500 words, and we will link back to your blog. That is your compensation.

How to apply

All applicants must be U.S natives writing in native U.S. English. Degrees are not necessary, but writing is expected to be insightful and free of errors.

Send an email to shah@shahtraining.com to be considered. Please apply with the URL of your blog. Include writing samples.

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12 Combo Exercises for Women

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Time is limited. Work is plenty. In the hustle and bustle of daily life, making time for exercise becomes a secondary ambition. In addition, if you work in a  9-5 office where the majority of your day is spent sitting, you are much more likely to be overweight or obese.

This is no good.

So how do you combat this, especially if you do not have an hour (or even 30 minutes) to devote to exercise.

The little known secret I use, and prescribe to my readers is using combination exercises. Combo or “hybrid” moves are simply 2 or more movements fused together to form a brand new exercise which helps you target multiple body parts at once.

The Art and Science of Combination Movements

When designing a combination movement, you first need a “core” movement, followed by an “accessory” movement. For example, if you perform a movement such as a squat while holding a weight, you will squat down, then get up. From this position, you can do a number of things: 1) press the weight overhead, 2) press the weight in front of your body, or 3) curl the weight.

You can take a simple weighted squat and turned into three potential combination movements:

  • Squat & Overhead Press
  • Squat & Chest Press
  • Squat & Bicep Curl

If you widen your stance and perform sumo squats, now you have even more options:

  • Sumo Squat & Overhead Press
  • Sumo Squat & Chest Press
  • Sumo Squat & Bicep Curl

Using this simple method, you can create as many hybrid combo movements as your imagination allows.

Here is another idea on using a core exercise to build combo movements:

Pushup

Get into pushup position and think – how can I move my arms and legs to turn this simple move into a combination movement?

Here are some ideas:

  • Bring your knee up to your chest, and you have a mountain climber. You can do a pushup + mountain climber combination
  • Jump both of your legs in together towards your chest and you have what some people call a “thrust.” You can do a pushup + thrust.
  • Stay in the pushup position for 10+ seconds and you have a plank. You can do a pushup + plank.

Make it harder by adding a stability ball.

  • Get into a pushup position and place your feet on a stability ball. Do a pushup, then bring your feet in towards your chest. You’ve got a pushup + leg pull-in
  • From the pushup position, lift one leg off the stability ball and bring it in towards your chest. You can do a pushup + stability ball mountain climber (warning: this is EXTREMELY hard!)
  • Perform a pushup, then stay in this position for 10+ seconds. Now you have a pushup + stability ball plank.

The possibilities are endless.

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Hello world.
3 unique veggies that FIGHT abdominal fat? (surprising fat-fighters)

We have a great article for you today from one of our trusted nutrition experts… this article details how some of the chemicals (such as xenoestrogens) that we are being exposed to (from pesticides, herbicides, plastics, our water supply, etc) have been linked to what’s been termed “stubborn abdominal fat”, and how a specific class of veggies helps to combat this problem.

Read the article below to find out an interesting way to protect yourself from “xenoestrogens” and help you get a flatter stomach:

>> 3 Unique veggies that FIGHT Abdominal Fat (surprising fat-fighters that help to counteract “xenoestrogens”)

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