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31 Jan 2004

Weight loss & fitness
Dear All

I'm going to London/Paris July this year & am desperately trying to lose weight & to be in a better shape than I'm in currently. I therefore would like to enquire on a personal trainer that's in CTN.

Woud you recommend strength training??? I onced joined the gym but got discouraged very easily because of the loneliness that came with joining alone.

Looking forward to hearing from you all.
Answer 304 views

01 Jan 0001

Hi Cindy

Most gyms have trainers who can be hired in a one on one fashion, so if that's what you are looking for, then you won't need to look far - just pop in and chat to a consultant at the gym - I'm not sure whether you need to be a member of the gym to make these enquiries - this is something you would have to find out.

Next, and perhaps an even better idea, is to get a friend to join with you - I really think that the chances of success in an exercise programme go up 1000-fold if you have someone to enjoy it with. As you say, the alternative is loneliness, and so I really think you should get a group together who will be prepared to join you. If you do this, you may not need a gym, or a personal trainer, because you may be able to enjoy more outdoor activities (walks and jogs for example).

Now, finally, my personal opinion is that cardio is the primary focus for someone wanting to lose weight. The only way you will be able to lift your metabolic rate, and therefore burn more energy including fat, is by doing regular cardio training. Weight training has its place, as I will explain, but the cardio is the vital aspect that needs to be there to kickstart weight loss.

Cardio would include activities such as walking, jogging, cycling, aerobics, swimming etc. It is important to exercise between 4 and 5 times a week, for a minimum of 30 to 45 minutes each session. It is also ideal to work at a moderate to hard intensity, but for a longer duration. You should aim to do these sessions at an intensity that allows you to complete the session without feeling completely exhausted, but having worked up a good sweat and feeling that your breathing and metabolic rate are elevated.

now, with regards to weight training, it is important because lean muscle has a naturally higher metabolic rate than fat does. So, if you can increase your lean muscle mass (by weight training) then the idea is that you will also increase the metabolic rate, which means that you will, even at rest, be able to burn more energy. Hence, you will be able to keep weight off. So, that is where it fits in. However, the most important thing is to get started and to actually lose weight, you must be doing cardio training - the increase you get in metabolic rate during a 30 minute bout of cardio (and for the few hours after) far outweighs the weight training increases, and so if it's weight loss you are after, then cardio is the way to go. Once you have achieved weight loss, or you are still busy achieving it, then the weight training becomes important to sustain it.

Hope this helps
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