I was on line in the supermarket yesterday and I overheard a woman yesterday talking about her workout: “The instructor had us doing dozens of barbell curls and squats. He was working us hard! My arms are a little tight but other than that I am fine.”
Her conversation caught my attention. “Oh, yes three times a week I take his class…”
Dozens of curls and squats and you are fine? Three times a week? Who is this instructor? I turned around to see a middle-aged woman with a backside the size of a garbage can squeezed into black lycra. Tony Soprano would have looked better in a workout suit. I was now even more confused. Based on her conversation I was expecting to see someone in better shape.
Not to be nosy (what is one to do while waiting in line at the supermarket?) I looked over to see what she was taking out of her cart. Hmmm… it all makes sense to me now: 4 large bottles of diet soda, cake mix, what are those cheese puffs? Fiber cereal… Oh but wait! Kids cereal, cookies, pasta.. Where are the eggs? Vegetables?
“I am getting ready to do a Tough Mudder this fall…”
Oh boy, I would pay to see that one!
First things first: good for her to be working out and trying to become healthier. She has a gym membership and taking some classes which is may more than most people. She also has a goal in mind and I wish her all the success in the world. Sadly though she is on the hamster wheel working hard but getting no where fast.
Jiu-Jitsu weight loss is the name I give to the approach some people take to get in better shape. They look at only half of the equation and so they are subdued and grappled by the other half. Imagine a snake biting its own tail. Exercise alone is only a small part of the equation.
If you find yourself doing dozens of curls and squats and yet you are not sore from the effort you are either an olympic athlete or you are doing something wrong. If you take classes three times a week and still need an expansion device to get into your workout gear then something is wrong. You may be pinned by the Jiu-Jitsu calorie monster.
Diet and exercise needs to be applied intelligently if you want results. If you bust your hump in the gym and then go home and munch on cheese puffs what do you think the result will be? If you restrict calories to the bone and refrain from exercise where do you think you will end up in a few weeks? To lose weight and gain health you need a balanced, natural approach.
For this woman I would make the following recommendations:
- Ditch your instructor. He has not tailored a proper exercise regimen for you. Dozens of curls and squats doesn’t sound right to me but perhaps she was exaggerating a bit.
- Ditch the diet soda. The stuff that comes out of your kitchen faucet is much better for you.
- Ditch the boxed foods, pasta and cheese puffs. Go all-natural.
- Read The Diet for a Busy Life. Educate yourself on proper, balanced approach to weight loss.
- Oh and one more thing: Don’t go to the supermarket in your workout clothes (ever!).