Resistance key to losing fat

Running between markers - keep arms moving and back straightIt's time to get in shape for summer, so Gary Dawkins, of Creative Conditioning at River Ridge Retreat, takes us through the second part of our 10-week programme.

This is a time-efficient programme that uses the latest exercise and conditioning methods for fast and long-lasting fat destruction and the development of muscle tone.

It's designed to fit in with a busy lifestyle. Daily exercise sessions from Monday to Friday are completed in just 30 minutes. In the weekend, the sessions last just 45 minutes.

The first part of this programme (published October 30) consisted of interval-type cardiovascular exercise sessions. It's now time to include resistance in the mix.

Each and every exercise session used in this programme consists of a combination of anaerobic cardiovascular and bodyweight-resistance exercise.

This two-way fat-attack approach is the most efficient form of fat-loss conditioning.

It burns the largest number of calories in the least amount of time, and continues to burn high amounts of calories for the 12 hours following the session. It even burns calories while you sleep.

That is a direct result of the lean-muscle gains from the inclusion of resistance exercise into the programme.

In all of these exercises, beginners should complete a smaller number of repetitions and sets, while advanced exercisers can do the higher number.

It's all about fat destruction - not weight loss!

We all have the ability to burn fat around the clock.

Imagine burning two or three times more calories per minute while watching TV or sleeping.

Imagine burning unwanted fat stores while sitting at work.

We can do this by elevating our resting metabolic rate. It's that simple.

If we have a faster resting metabolic rate then we burn more unwanted calories even when we are not exercising.

It is common thinking that we only burn fat stores while exercising. That's the reason the calorie-counting dials on exercise machines keep us motivated.

But it is also the reason why our weight-loss efforts often fail: we are overwhelmed by all the hard exercise required to shed the pounds.

Well, that's not the whole picture

There is a big difference between hard and smart exercise.

It's all about doing the correct mix of exercise and giving the body the correct amount of rest it needs to replenish after exercising.

If we adopt the traditional way of thinking then, yes, there is going to be a huge time investment involved in the exercise required to burn off any excess fat stores that have accumulated over time.

However, if we adopt smart training programmes to destroy body fat then our investment in time is significantly reduced.

That is achieved by increasing the resting metabolic rate.

There are two activity induced ways to increase our resting metabolic rate.

The first is to build lean muscle - the more lean muscle we have, the higher our resting metabolic rate.

Most people have a latent fear of building muscle. Muscle is, however, our best friend when it comes to long-lasting fat loss.

The more lean muscle we have, the more calories we burn around the clock without having to exercise.

Just by carrying on with normal daily activities we burn significantly more calories when we have more lean muscle mass. That is why we are now completing bodyweight-resistance exercises in our fat-loss programme.

Resistance exercise

- Develops muscle, and muscle is our "engine" that burns fat around the clock
- Burns calories while completing the exercise session
- Makes the heart ventricles stronger
- Is important for maintaning and developing strong joints and bones and preventing the onset of osteoporosis
- Strenghtens the muscles, joints and bones so we can perform more efficiently and effectively at our aerobic and interval training exercises

The exercises 


Running around field (football field)

Warm up: Jogging or walk one lap.

Four corners: Jog (or walk) between the first two corners of the field. Run at ¾ pace (or power walk) between the second two corners of the field. Slow to a jog (walk) between the third two corners of the field. Now increase to a  ¾ (or higher) pace run (or power walk) between the last corners of the field. Repeat this process until you have completed 2-6 laps.

NB: Keep your arms moving and your back straight.





Shuttles: Place three markers (e.g., two shoes and a top) 7m apart in a straight line. Run at  ¾ (or higher) pace from marker one to marker two, then back to marker one. Do the same from marker one to marker three. Now rest for 10 seconds and repeat the process another 5-10 times. Rest for 90 seconds and complete another 1-2 sets.

NB: Keep your arms moving and your back straight.




Park-bench power press-ups

In the press-up position lower yourself slowly down to 90 degrees at your elbow. Now press up as fast as you can to the starting position again.
Complete 8-20 of these. Rest 30 seconds and complete another 1-3 sets.

NB: Beginners do the press-up from the ground rather than from the bench and do the press up from their knees.




Park-bench squat and jump

In the standing position, squat down slowly to 90 degrees at your knee joints (or until your butt hits the bench). Now jump up. Complete 8-25 of these.
Rest 30 seconds and complete another 1-3 sets.

NB: Beginners do the squat without completing the jump.





Warm up: Jog or walk along the beach for 300m.

Zigzags: Start on the hard sand down by the water. Run at (or higher) pace (or power walk) on an angle up to the soft sand at the foot of the sand dunes, now jog (or walk) back down on an angle to the hard sand. Repeat this process for 10 minutes. It's a good idea to start at St Kilda beach and make your way down towards Middle Beach and then return.

NB: Keep your arms moving and your back straight.





Sand long jumps

Do this only in the soft sand, so it's safe on the joints. Starting with feet shoulder-width apart and with a nice straight back, jump as far as you can. Complete five long jumps, then rest 10 seconds, then repeat the process another 3-5 times. Now rest for 60 seconds and complete another 1-2 sets.
NB: Keep your arms moving and your back straight.





Beach walking lunges

Lunge from the firm sand down by the water's edge to the soft sand just beneath the sand dunes. Take a big step forward and lunge down to 90 degrees at your knee joint, always keeping your front knee behind your toes. Keep your back straight. Complete 16-24 walking lunges, rest 30 seconds, then complete 1-2 more sets.

NB: Keep your arms moving and your back straight.





Beach down-and-ups with press-up

Get down quickly into a press-up position. Complete one press-up then get back up into a standing position as quickly as you can. Continue until you have completed 8-15 of these. Complete another 1-2 sets.

NB: Beginners do press-ups with their knees on the ground.





Stair climbs

Warm up: Go for a 3-5 minute jog (or walk) along the flat.
Stair climbs: Run at (or higher) pace (or power walk) up 50 steps, then jog (or walk) back down. As soon as you get back to the bottom start again. Complete this 4-8 times. Rest for 90 seconds and complete another 1-2 sets.

NB: Keep your arms moving and your back straight.





Staircase incline squat jumps

With your arms out in front of you, complete a squat, then jump up on to the next step landing flat on your feet. Complete 5-25 jumps. Now walk back down and repeat another 1-2 sets.

NB: Beginners complete the squat then walk up to the next step rather than jumping up.





Staircase decline squat jumps

This is a slow and controlled exercise. Squat down very slowly feeling your legs work (the slower you squat down the more your legs are working). Now gently jump down to the next step, then do the squat again. Complete 5-25 controlled squat jumps.
Repeat this another time.
NB: Keep arms moving and a straight back. Beginners complete the squat and walk down to the next step rather than jumping down.





Bench (or use the first two steps of the staircase)

If you use a bench, make sure it is no higher than your knees.) Complete running (or power) step-ups for 15 to 30 step-ups. Rest for 30 seconds and repeat the process another three times. Now rest for two minutes and complete this process another 1-2 times.
NB: Keep your arms moving and your back straight.