It’s January so it’s time for my annual fitness review. Unfortunately obesity is still on the rise and is still plaguing our society with Australia still ranking as the most overweight country in the world.
More specifically, the sickening fact that Australian adults keep getting fatter, more lethargic, and less healthy has mirrored the unabated deterioration in the health and fitness of our youth population. However, on a positive note, I feel that 2009 will be host to several growing fitness trends that will provide the long-term answers to solve this ever-growing problem.
Fitness Trend#1- The popularity of Fitness Boot Camps Will Rise and One-On-One Personal Training Will Fall
With the recent credit crunch in the U.S, U.K and other parts of the world many experts are predicting the same for Australia.
With an economy that will likely get worse before it gets better, the average Australian may find that one on one personal training at a cost of $70 – $90 per session will simply become too expensive.
However there’s always a solution and fitness boot camps are just that. Boot camps are without a doubt the hottest thing going on in the fitness industry right now. The group fitness model is a win-win for both the trainer and the client which will make one on one personal training a thing of the past. Fitness trainers are able to leverage their time and maximize their income while clients can access personal training in a dynamic environment for a ¼ of the cost.
Fitness boot camps are popping up all over Sydney and with good reason. If your goal is to lose weight what better way than to save yourself a heap of money and get even better results by joining a local fitness boot camp.
Fitness Trend#2- Interval Training Destroys Aerobic Training For Fat Loss And Fitness
High-Intensity Interval Training is rapidly gaining popularity as the best form of improving both fitness and fat loss. Thankfully, 2009 will see more people doing sprints and less people doing marathons to lose weight. However, make no mistake about it, lots of people are still going to do hours of snail-paced cardio to burn fat.
Aerobic or endurance training is essentially going at a slow, low intensity pace for a long period of time (typically at least 30-60 minutes). In other words, the focus of endurance training is on the total volume of exercise (not quality). Think about all those speed limpers you see every New Year foolishly running for hours pounding the pavement or treadmill to get rid of that winter blubber.
With interval training, the focus is on the intensity of exercise (quality). Intervals consist of alternating between shorts bouts of all out high-intensity effort and active recovery periods for a much quicker and focused amount of time (typically 10-20 minutes of intervals works best). This approach is scientifically proven to burn nine times more fat AND lead to faster improvements in fitness than the aerobic alternative.
Two landmark scientific studies come to mind here:
The Tabata study compared the effects of four minutes of high-intensity interval training with 45-60 minutes of low to moderate intensity cardio. The interval training group burned just as much fat as the endurance group and also had greater improvement in both anaerobic (think sprinters) and aerobic (think distance runners) fitness… in only four minutes!
The Gibala study compared the effects of 20 minutes of interval training (30 second sprint followed by four minutes of rest) with 90-120 minutes of endurance training in the “heartrate zone.” The conclusions of the study were that both methods of training lead to the same improvements in oxygen utilization (or aerobic fitness). In other words, intervals accomplished what endurance training did from a fitness standpoint in only a sixth of the time!
The time is now to jump on the interval training bandwagon. Come 2009, do yourself and your body a favor and start sprinting to look better naked.
Fitness Trend#3- More Lean Protein And Fiber for Carbohydrate Addict’s
Australians are carb addicts, most Ozzie’s simply can’t get enough of the stuff. Our diets are full of starches and sugars and the flabby midsections are there to prove it. One of the most understood aspects about diet today is that low carb means eliminating all starches and sugars. Although eliminating all types of grains and processed sugars is a good thing, don’t make the mistake of eliminating the fruits and veggies in the name of ‘cutting out carbs’. The majority of these nutrient dense carbs is actually low GI and is packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber which create stable blood sugar levels to keep your body burning fat all day long.
All of our clients that have lost the most fat have followed our guidelines of unlimited veggies all day long (besides corn, peas, carrots, beets, and potatoes). In other words, eat lots of veggie carbs, and very little of the other stuff if you want to see your abs!