Monday, January 23, 2012

Resolution Reality Check: Simple, Logical, Effective (Part 1)

It’s nearing the end of January 2012 and it is time for a Resolution Reality Check!

One of the most common New Year's resolutions involves a goal for fitness and physical health.  Many individuals head to gyms, boot camps, special programs, running, diets, yoga, pilates, lifting, support/self-help resources, social exercise groups, etc… each with their own benefits, styles, and results.  However, more often than not, the New Year’s health-fitness resolution tends to fail in some degree. We all know this intimately as many of us re-make this particular resolution every year. Most of the time, fitness resolutions result in failure due to poor planning and choosing the wrong type of exercise to pursue your goals. To avoid failure and achieve success, we need to break down the resolution with a reality check.

Whatever components your health-fitness resolution may have, success is more likely to occur when strategized. Sometimes, a spirit of determination can only get you so far… sometimes you must find ways to set yourself up for success.

The successful health-fitness resolution holds within it three crucial components; it MUST be:
  1. Simple
  2. Logical
  3. Effective

Simple:  The modern day lifestyle is busy enough as it is to squeeze in 90-120 minutes of additional commitment several days a week.  While it IS possible to do so, most of us would get only a handful of hours of sleep a day if we were to commit to such routines.  Sometimes, the simplest solution is the best solution – and after all, a kettlebell is a cast iron ball with a handle on top from which you can achieve a fine workout in just 15 minutes. Simple enough.

Logical: First off, the health-fitness resolution must hold logical water. Unrealistic goals are unrealistic – period. Also, the resolution and the path to achieve it must make sense. We must take into consideration the science of human movement as all forms of exercise require human movement. The body moves as integrated kinetic chains where multiple muscle groups and areas of the body work together. The logical approach during exercise is to improve the functional performance of the body as a whole, thus, we should include routines which train in functional arrays rather than isolative movements.

Effective: It isn’t enough to engage in exercises because they look & sound good. We need to choose an exercise because it has been proven to work. According to research, high intensity kettlebell exercise can burn up to 20 Calories a minute... that's more than 1000 Calories per hour during exercise! While strict aerobic exercise typically burns only 80-110 Calories per mile, kettlebell exercise burns far more Calories per hour, and, addresses both cardiorespiratory endurance and lean muscle strength training at the same time (Fung 2010). The lean muscle building yields a high metabolic demand for adipose calories which only results in a healthy & leaner body composition.

If your New Year’s Fitness Resolution includes things like weight loss, body composition fat loss, toning up, and getting stronger – then add some kettlebell swings to your day!

Kettlebells are simple, logical, and effective – a solid tool for success!

Coming Up: Resolution Reality Check: Simple, Logical, Effective (Part 2).  In my next post I will introduce my “Five Star Kettlebell Routine” – a quick and effective workout for the busy day.

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