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Real Life Nutrition Questions Answered

Real Life Fitness Questions Answered

Emma Brown
Nutritionist

Janet Aylott
Nutritionist

Kelly Marshall
Fitness Consultant

Q.

What type of exercise should I be doing?I am so confused!

Help! I have joined the gym for the first time in my life and my mates have me really confused. I want to get stuck in - do I do classes that tone and diet or classes that are cardio-watcha-macall-it - I don't want the fat turning to muscle and that?s all the gym instructors keep going on about! What's best? I want to lose a stone and then turn what's left in to muscle - I'm worried I'll do the wrong thing :-(

A.

Our expert says...

Hi,

The best thing you can do is combine all the different types of exercise you want to do! Exercise that is regular and consistent is the most effective option! :)

One thing to be aware of is that the concept of fat ?turning? to muscle is a popular myth. It survives because as muscle tone increases with exercise, body fat generally-speaking, tends to reduce alongside, assuming a healthy, calorie-controlled eating plan. However, physiologically, it is simply not possible for one to turn in to the other.

The best approach as you are new to exercise is to cross-train, (include a large variety of training methods within your weekly plan), and incorporate a mixture of strength training, cardiovascular and classes. Muscle tone development and fat burning occur hand in hand so try not to view them as separate entities in need of being achieved one after the other.

Too often, individuals, (women especially), avoid strength training altogether or stick with light weights through a fear of developing big muscles. However, this myth means that a lot of people are short-changing their ability to burn body fat because they aren't developing valuable muscle tone, which increases your metabolic rate and makes you an effective fat-burning machine.

To achieve lean muscle tissue and tone, aim to use weights (machine or free weights) that allow you to do 15 repetitions a set. Your technique should be controlled throughout the 15 reps but if you get to number 15 and could do more reps, then the weight is too light! Make sure that 15 reps is the maximum you can manage because if you don?t overload the muscle you can?t improve the tone. Pushing yourself and going to failure = more calories burned and improved muscle tone, not increased size!

Hope this helps

Kelly

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