The principle behind conscious fitness is that the more engaged you are in your workouts, the more likely you are to enjoy them, and thus stick with them. And it is working out consistently, day in day out, that will ultimately help you to lose weight.
For years we have been told that steady cardio, in the so-called 'fat burning zone', is the best way to lose weight. Conscious fitness calls this whole concept into question.
The problem with steady state cardio workouts is that while they do burn calories, they are not the most efficient way to do so. Furthermore, for those who are overweight or out of shape it can often be difficult to actually stay in the fat-burning zone. They often find that they are training outside the zone, quickly moving into the anaerobic zone. At these higher intensities, the muscles stop taking in oxygen and lose their ability to release stored fat.
So what are the alternatives? Research shows that one of the most effective ways of losing fat, and keeping it off, is to add muscle. There are a number of workouts that will help you do this, and all of them have the added benefit of requiring more concentration and focus.
This extra focus means that your body and mind work as a team, allowing you to tune into your body more effectively.
The best alternatives to steady state cardio are:
- Resistance training: Whether you use weights, machines or resistance bands, this type of training requires good focus on your body, and will add the muscle you need to burn fat.
- Interval training: Interval training involves adding bursts of faster work to a cardio workout. It is proven to dramatically increase fat loss and improve fitness.
- Yoga and Pilates. These practices feel good while you are doing them, increasing your sense of well-being. They also strengthen your muscles and make you leaner.