Are you doing your aerobic workout – at too fast of a pace? Are you walking, jogging, dancing, biking, swimming, hiking, etc., at a pace that is higher than you are aerobically conditioned? If you are, maybe that could be why you aren’t losing the fat and flab.
Just because you are working out, doesn’t mean you are burning fats for energy. People often assume that their aerobic workout (walking, jogging, biking, swimming, dancing, hiking, etcetera) is FAT Burning. Unfortunately, the pace they are going at it, makes it anything BUT Fat Burning.
Yes, they’re burning calories, but the real secret to losing the fat and the flab is to burn FATS for energy, Not Carbs and Proteins (lean muscle)? But it happens all the time.
What’s the Difference between
Aerobic and Anaerobic Exercise
The 3 tell-tale signs for aerobic exercise are…
- Low intensity
- Long duration
- With Oxygen
Walking is your classic aerobic workout. Most people can walk for hours, its low intensity, and you should be able to keep a conversation. Meaning you’re not having to gasp for air as you talk. The key to aerobic exercise is Oxygen. No oxygen means no fat burning!
The 3 tell-tale signs for Anaerobic Exercise are…
- High intensity
- Short duration
- Without oxygen
Sprinting, Resistance Training, High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) are your classic anaerobic types of workouts. What truly separates Aerobic and Anaerobic exercise is the intensity of your workout. As the intensity of your workout increases, as the speed of your walk, jog, swim, dance, etc., increase – you move from aerobic respiration into anaerobic respiration. This means your heart starts beating a little faster, which is needed to get more oxygen to the muscles quicker. The increased heart rate signifies more demand and more stress on the body. When that happens, your body gradually loses its ability to burn FATS for fuel anymore. This is because you’ve reached a point, a plateau, a threshold – where you don’t have enough oxygen in your tissues.
You’re in oxygen debt! Your heart rate has reached a point where instead of continuing with aerobic metabolism. Your heavier breathing, your inability to keep a normal conversation has activated anaerobic respiration, which triggers anaerobic metabolism. This is a normal physiological process that you don’t have to think about, it’s all automatic. But the Big Takeaway is that now instead of burning fats for energy. You are only able to burn carbohydrates and proteins (lean muscle) for energy!
What’s the last thing you want to burn for energy?
Lean Muscle! But it happens All the Time.
People assume they’re aerobic activity is fat-burning. But weeks and months later they wonder why they haven’t been able to get rid of all the fat and flab.
It’s about Eating Right and Training Smart. I love good, hard, intense workouts. Those are my anaerobic workouts where I’m looking to spike my testosterone and growth hormones, so I can build and keep lean muscle. But the next time out, I’ll get my easy, low-intensity workout so I can Burn FAT.
I can’t tell you how many times, but I can say more than 90% of the time, patients and clients come back and say, “I was doing my aerobic workout at too fast of a pace.”
What’s more surprising is that they didn’t realize they were burning lean muscle (proteins) for energy. So, if you’ve hit a sticking point, or haven’t gotten rid of the fat and flab, maybe you need to take another look at The Intensity or the pace of Your Aerobic Workout. Your workout may be perfectly fine – it simply needs to be fine-tuned for your level of fitness and the results you want.
Next time we’ll talk about how to use a heart rate monitor and how to determine what pace you should train at – to burn FAT. In the meantime, you can checkout our DIY Fitness Test.
Lastly, It’s OK to do your aerobic workout in an anaerobic state. Just make sure you have enough carbs, to get through a strenuous workout. Otherwise, you’ll be burning lean muscle. This is especially important if you are on a low carb diet, have recently skipped a meal or just woke up.
ONLY elite marathoners and triathletes can train at 80% of their max heart rate and still be aerobic.
So, unless you are an elite distance runner Slow Your Butt Down!
Eat Right! Train Smart! Don’t let your EGO get in the way.