June 2021

Is Your Exercise Routine Serving You Well?
5 Ways to Avoid the Exercise Plateau

By Fred DeVito

Fred DeVito gives us a preview of Core Fusion’s new Boot Camp exercises. Purchase the Core Fusion Boot Camp DVD here.

OK, so you are sticking with your New Year’s plan of watching calories and exercising 3 times a week. It’s been a few months now, you’ve dropped some pounds, and you’re feeling more energetic . . . but have you hit a plateau?

This could be a defining moment in your quest to making healthy eating and regular exercise a lifestyle, instead of a burden.

With all the fitness options out there . . . a gym membership, personal training, core-barre classes, yoga, spinning, running, and more . . . you can easily get confused about making the right choices for your personal needs and goals.

Here are 5 reasons why you may have hit that plateau, and what you can do to get beyond it.

1) The cardio myth: People are conditioned to think that they need to do cardio in order to lose weight. The fact is that although you can burn up to 600 calories in an intense 1-hour cardio session, you are not doing much to stoke your metabolism and resting heart rate for the remainder of the day. This means that over a 24-hour period, your calorie expenditure is not as great as someone who is incorporating strength training into a cardio workout. So while all that time and sweat will get you dehydrated, your workout may not give you the body that you wanted.

2) The unbalanced workout syndrome: In a quest for the tightest butt and flattest abs, people will overdo repetitions and avoid stretching because it’s a “waste of time.” Too much strengthening exercise without the proper balance of stretching does not leave you toned, it leaves you tight. And when you get too tight, you become bulky and injury-prone. Choose a program that properly balances the cardio, strength, and flexibility components of fitness.

3) Choosing exercises you like are not the ones you need: What you need is not always what you like. If your body is too tight, you may tend to shy away from exercise that requires flexibility. That’s a reason some men are not comfortable with Pilates, yoga, or core-barre classes. The key point here is that if an exercise requires flexibility, then over time, it will increase your flexibility. It just requiresconsistency and patience. Working on the exercises that you need as well as the exercises that you like will improve your fitness level and move you beyond your plateau.

4) We want results . . . now: We live in a society where money is no object, and if we punch in our credit card number we can have anything delivered to our doorstep. You can’t get strong abdominals that way. You can hire the most expensive trainer, or buy the latest and greatest abdominal machine, but unless you spend time working on areas of weakness, you won’t see results. Abdominal bracing, strength in stillness, and proper form will help you rise above your plateau . . . not 100 crunches. I see the proof of this every day in the Core Fusion classes I lead at Exhale Spa!

5) The weekend warrior dilemma: If you have a busy work week, you probably use your weekends to exercise and let off steam. So you wake up Saturday, you play tennis or go for a round of golf, and then you end up on the couch Sunday with a hamstring pull or rotator cuff strain. When I ask my Core Fusion students what exercise they do, they usually mention activities like these. And I say, “No, that’s your sport. What do you do for exercise?” Exercise prepares you for weekend sports. Exercise should not be viewed as a competitive sport. Exercise needs to be viewed as personal, not comparative. It’s not about the person next to you. It’s only about you.

With exercise and nutrition, lasting change requires that you stay open to possibilities, explore new movement patterns, and become educated beyond what movie stars are doing or magazines are saying. Take a fresh look at the options and be open to new activities. The choices you make today about nutrition, exercise, and stress reduction will have a lasting effect on your lifestyle for years to come.

Fred DeVito, Health & Fitness Contributing Editor
For over 30 years, Fred DeVito has taught New Yorkers to live healthier, leading fitness classes at the acclaimed Lotte Berk Method Studios, and more recently, at Exhale Spa, where he serves as Executive Vice President of Mind Body Training. With his wife and partner, Elisabeth Halfpapp . . . Read more about Fred DeVito

Top 5 Tips for a Fitness & Workout Routine You’ll Stick To

By Michael George

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An exercise program’s ultimate goal should be about being healthy, while connecting the mind and body as part of your lifestyle. Your body image should be the byproduct of a balanced exercise program. But it’s hard to stay in shape if every exercise routine falls by the wayside within weeks and every fitness goal is forgotten until the next New Year’s resolutions are made. Follow my top 5 tips to designing a fitness routine that works for your individual needs, and you will have an easier time sticking to it. Focusing on taking care of your body will result in a great body—along with an empty space on that list of resolutions when New Year’s rolls around.

1. Set Realistic Goals for Your Workout Routine
What do you want to accomplish with your fitness program? Make a list of goals or changes you would like to make in your lifestyle. Some good examples are weight loss, increased strength, increased energy, stress reduction, preventive healthcare, and increased metabolism. Realistic, achievable goals will keep you motivated, focused, and interested as you watch those goals become reality.

2. Determine How Much Time You Can Commit to Exercise & Training
How much time can you realistically give toward exercise and fitness each day or each week? Try to set regular times for your workouts and develop a consistent routine. Remember, we all make choices every day about what we schedule into our lives. Exercise is a commitment.

3. Evaluate Your Workout Likes, Dislikes, Strengths & Weaknesses
Focus your workouts and exercise choices around activities you enjoy, while taking into account previous injuries and family medical history. Try to make exercise fun and interesting. Exercise should be an integral part of a balanced lifestyle.

4. Incorporate Variety & Balance in Your Workout Schedule
Your workout program should combine strength training exercises, cardiovascular cross-training, flexibility activities, and mind-centering practices. You should change the flow of your workout regularly for continued progress and to avoid boredom. This way, you promote a mind-and-body connection.

5. Listen to Your Body When Exercising
Your body will tell you when to push harder and when to back off while working out. Stay connected to how you are feeling. If your body is tired, don’t force yourself to do a hard workout. Alter your workout to be more relaxing by doing more flexibility work, which is meditative; otherwise you will only succeed in fatiguing your body further. On the flip side, if you are mentally tired, do activities that will rejuvenate you, such as cardiovascular training and strength training. Either way, exercise on a daily basis. You will feel better about yourself and your life as a whole.

Michael George, Health & Fitness Contributing Editor

Michael George is one of Hollywood’s most sought after fitness experts and celebrity trainers. He is the author of Body Express Makeover in which his balanced fitness regime integrates the body, mind, and spirit connection for optimal energy and health. Read more

Win a Package from a Celebrity Nutritionist!
Who knew losing weight and getting fiber into your diet could be so easy? You could win a consultation and full product line from celebrity nutritionist and PageDaily contributing editor Tanya Zuckerbrot. For contest details and to enter for a chance to win, click here.

Does the idea of exercise and diet stress you out? Read some of our latest health & fitness articles.
New Year, New You
Stress Relief through Meditation: How Do I Begin?
Eat Like a Kid: Guilt-Free Comfort Food Recipes!

Tracy Anderson Method DVDs, $19.99

Tracy-Anderson-Method-DVDs  

Tracy Anderson Method DVDs:

Tracy Anderson, personal trainer to Madonna and Gwyneth Paltrow, is responsible for getting these ladies in tip-top shape. Her DVD collection shares her various workout routines: Mat WorkoutDance Cardio Workout, and Post Pregnancy Workout.


Mat Workout DVD:

Tracy’s secret to sculpting a long, lean, feminine physique without adding bulk is revealed in her Mat Workout DVD. Tracy keeps her clients in great shape using high repetitions and light resistance training. Through small isolated movements, she targets the smaller supporting muscles, which works them from all angles. Weights used in this routine are no more than 3lbs.

The workout lasts just about an hour and is divided into the following sections: standing legs, arm work without weights, arm work with weights, standing ab work, floor work for the legs, and a variety of crunches.

Purchase the Mat Workout DVD


Dance Cardio Workout DVD:

This high impact, high energy cardio dance DVD is full of jumping, high kicks, and dance steps. Tracy breaks down each dance cardio combination in full detail, which keeps the workout fun and entertaining.

Dance cardio keeps the body looking long and lean. Since you are continuously moving, muscles are targeted from all angles. An entirely different group of muscles is worked through dance than through other forms of cardio such as running or biking; which makes this is a great option to add variety to your regular fitness routine. Tracy constantly introduces new moves throughout the DVD, in order to keep you on your toes.

Purchase the Dance Cardio Workout DVD


Post Pregnancy Workout DVD:

Like many women, Tracy Anderson gave into her cravings during her pregnancy and ate whatever she wanted, whenever she wanted. The reality hit after her son was born; she had gained 60 pounds. Frustrated with her weight gain, Tracy was determined to get back into shape.

While on a mission to shape her figure into that “teeny-tiny dancer type,” Tracy stumbled across a fitness routine that was able to miraculously tone and sculpt her body. It consists of many repetitions and light resistance training was tested on 150 women. After successfully toning and tightening over 150 women’s bodies, Tracy decided it was time to share her fitness secrets with the world.

Tracy Anderson’s Post Pregnancy Workout DVD tightens the core and helps to lose the additional pregnancy weight gain.

Purchase the Post Pregnancy Workout DVD