Monday, August 1, 2011

Perfect Vacation Plan (when you can't get to Boot Camp!)

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So many of our Texas Fit Chicks Bootcamp clients are heading out for one last summer vacation with the family! Lots of our Fit Chicks have asked us what they can do to avoid gaining weight while they are away. Since we all know that vacation means a break in your routine, and lots of rich food that we don't normally eat, it's very important to go in with a plan! Nobody wants to think about calorie counts of everything they eat while they're gone, so getting a great workout in first thing in the morning, will help!
Tabata training is the perfect answer to getting in a great workout before the day begins. Tabata training means doing an exercise at full intensity for 20 seconds, then taking a 10 second break - and repeating the entire sequence 8 times through. It's a high intensity workout for 4 minutes, but, if done properly, is equivalent to 45 minutes of steady state cardio on a treadmill!
Cardio exercises are perhaps the most important ones that one would do during a workout session on vacation. The reason is pretty simple. Cardio will keep the heart in better shape, help the circulatory system function better, thus delivering more oxygen and nutrients to the cells. Boot camp exercises are good cardio work outs but more importantly these exercises great for the cardio vascular system also help to burn the fat reserves ensuring that a person loses weight and builds muscles.

Tabata training can be done with several options for highly intense work. The first tabata option is our boot camp cardio exercise, sprinting. Most people who have attended boot camp drills hear the term high intensity alternate training a lot of times. This is because sprinting is alternately done with slow jog and is a great work out for losing weight. Sprinting can also be made tougher by running up an incline or a hill. Other modifications of this exercise are stepping up and down to another spot which is about a foot higher than the ground.  Sprinting helps the heart, the legs, and overall weight loss along with increasing stamina of our fit chicks!

Another boot camp cardio exercise which is amazingly effective for weight loss too, is the squat thrust. This actually consists of a few steps. The first step is to squat and touch your hands to the ground. The next step is to jump and push your legs behind to a pushup position. The third step is to get back to the squatting position with hands and legs close together and hands touching the ground. The fourth step is to get back to the standing position. These 4 steps comprise a set and doing at least 10 sets could lead to some real calories expended! Tabatas with squat thrusts really WORK.
The third cardio exercise is actually a modification of the second one. Burpees (yes, if you're a current Texas Fit Chick, you know just what these are) consist of a series of steps that can make our fit chicks sweat in no time. Burpees involve jumping as high as possible and then landing in a squat position with hands and legs together and the hands touching the ground. This is immediately followed by pushing the legs back to a pushup position. After this you need to get back to the squat position, jump up and then land in the standing position that you had initially started with. Tabata burpees always get a moan from our chicks that have been in bootcamp with us for any time...but they WORK!

The fourth cardio exercise is a modification of jogging but slightly more difficult. It is known as high knee drill and involves raising the knee to the height of the chest and then placing the foot forward. This is alternately done for both the legs as one jogs ahead. High Knee burpee tabatas are great when you don't have a lot of room to get your workout done - hotel rooms especially!

The fifth boot camp cardio exercise is the slow pushup which involves doing 4 pushups at a stretch and then on the fifth push up going half down and holding for a few seconds. Repeating this for a few sets is very beneficial. All the above exercises not only help the cardio vascular system but also help in weight loss.

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