Mix Fitness's Blog


How Much Should You Weigh?

Posted in Uncategorized by mixfitness on February 23, 2010
Tags: , ,

Many of us have a preconceived idea of how much we should weigh.  What prompts us to arrive at that number?  Do you want to lose “x” amount of weight so you can weigh what you weighed in college?  Or, have you arbitrarily assigned yourself a number?  Because there isn’t an ideal number, we’re left to decide for ourselves.  Using body mass index (BMI) gives you a general guideline for how much you should weigh.

BMI is not without it’s faults, but it is a simple method to determine body mass based on weight and height.  Physicians use the number as a risk factor for developing obesity-related diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.  BMI is classified the following ways:

Underweight:  <18.5
Normal weight:  18.5 – 24.9
Overweight:  25 – 29.9
Obesity:  >30

Click here to discover your BMI using the American Council on Exercise (ACE) web-based BMI calculator.

If you fall outside of the “normal weight” category, don’t fret.  Losing as little as five pounds could improve your score.  Dr. Cedric Bryant, ACE’s Chief Science Officer, states, “The key point to keep in mind is that to determine their ideal body weights, individuals should not rely solely on a bathroom scale, height-weight tables, BMI or even percent body-fat measurements. Sound nutrition and exercise science principles, along with common sense, mandate that individuals should avoid setting “hard and fast” body-weight goals. Rather, they should strive for achieving a level of body weight that is compatible with a healthy lifestyle (e.g., sensible eating, regular exercise).”

Advertisements

The Basics of Using Free Weights

Posted in Uncategorized by mixfitness on February 18, 2010
Tags: , ,

Man performing the overhead tricep extension.

Resistance training is an effective method of training the muscles, joints, and bones. Both dumbbells and plate-loaded bars are types of free weights. When you incorporate free weights into your workouts, your personal fitness improves.

Benefits

Progressive resistance training increases lean muscle which leads to improved metabolism. The American College of Sports Medicine cites reductions in body fat, increases in bone density, modest reductions in blood pressure, and improved blood lipid profiles as benefits to resistance training. Athletes, in all sports, train with free weights to improve performance. And, when performed correctly, resistance training is safe for people of all ages.

Characteristics

While free weights fall under the umbrella of resistance training, they have a few unique characteristics. Free weights can be used anywhere. They mimic real life, or functional, movement. Meaning, your limbs move more freely in a natural motion. Using dumbbells and weighted bars require more skill than using weight machines. Stability is required to control the weight since it is not fixed. Some exercises, especially those when the dumbbell or bar is lifted over your head, require a spotter.

Exercises

Dumbbells can be used to train all the major muscles of the body. Upper body exercises include the chest press and flyes to work your chest. For your back, do one-arm rows. The military press is an example for your shoulders. Bicep curls work your biceps. Overhead extensions target your triceps. Examples of lower body exercises are squats and lunges. Simply hold a dumbbell in each hand to add extra resistance.

Misconceptions

Many women believe working out with free weights will make them bulky. Because of this notion, women either shy away from lifting or lift insufficient amounts of weight. However, women do not have the levels of testosterone necessary to develop large muscles comparable to those of men.

Getting Started

The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) recommends resistance training 2 to 3 days per week. Allow 24 to 72 hours between days for muscle recovery. At least one set of 8 to 12 reps per muscle group is advised by the ACSM to improve muscle tone and endurance. The amount of weight lifted should fatigue your muscles. After your first month, build up to three sets per exercise.

Jillian Michaels Gets Sued: From A Trainer’s Perspective

Posted in Uncategorized by mixfitness on February 11, 2010
Tags: ,

Jillian Michaels is being sued for false advertising.  If the name doesn’t ring a bell, she’s one of the personal trainers on the TV show “The Biggest Loser.”  Michaels endorses the diet supplement Jillian Michaels’ Maximum Strength Calorie Control as well as other supplement products.  “Sadly, Michaels has decided to exploit her fame and goodwill by collaborating with Thin Care and Basic Research to promote a weight loss supplement that purportedly will cause weight loss by itself, without any additional effort on the part of the consumer,” the lawsuit alleges.  The plaintiff is seeking to prohibit the sale of the product as well as damages.

Before you start calling the plaintiff names, consider that these products exist because people do buy them.  There are those that truly believe there is a miracle pill.  Many people respect Jillian for the work she’s doing on the reality TV show.  So, why not trust her when she says a supplement will help you lose weight?

My biggest issue with this is Michaels has stepped outside of ethical practice for personal trainers.  Respectable trainers do not recommend supplements.  It is outside our scope of practice.  We know that pills do not cause you to lose weight.  It is the job of nutritionists and registered dieticians to prescribe foods.

Many fitness professionals are members of the group IDEA Health and Fitness Association.  The IDEA Code of Ethics for Personal Trainers states, “As a member of IDEA Health & Fitness Association, I will be guided by the best interests of the client and will practice within the scope of my education and knowledge. I will maintain the education and experience necessary to appropriately train clients; will behave in a positive and constructive manner; and will use truth, fairness and integrity to guide all my professional decisions and relationships.

‘Always be guided by the best interestes of the client.

Remember that a personal trainer’s primary responsibility is to the client’s safety, health and welfare; never compromise this responsibility for your own self-interest, personal advantage or monetary gain.

Recommend products or services only if they will benefit the client’s health and well-being, not because they will benefit you financially or occupationally.'”

I believe Jillian knows better, but money talks.  The take home message:  Weight loss pills DO NOT work.  Do not buy them.  Do not believe anyone, even if it’s your personal trainer, who suggests using them.

Check out my blog: The Truth About Weight Loss