The real underlying goal of any fitness, exercise or for that matter weight loss program is to increase your Testosterone and Growth Hormone.
These two hormones are intimately involved in helping you burn fat and add lean muscle. The secret to making sure you produce these 2 hormones is the intensity of your workout.
The more intense the workout – the more testosterone (TT) and growth hormone (GH) you produce!!!! It’s that simple!
In as little as 5-20 minutes you can do bodyweight exercises such as: pushups, pull-ups, (inverted pull-ups for all those who can’t do pull-ups), squats….or any other type of compound exercises) at full-tilt….for as many reps and sets as you can in 5-20 minutes…..to spike your TT and GH. The key is that you need or should be Physically Whipped when you finish! If you lolly-gagged through the workout, you’re not going to get the results you hoped for!
Interval running, or a circuit at the gym are another great way to get a short, high intensity workout. It doesn’t take a lot of time, which is good for a lot of people, but it rewards you with that spike of TT and GH.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of aerobic exercise, it’s unfortunate that most people do their aerobic workout incorrectly, but it needs to be done for overall good health.
If our goal is to add some lean muscle and burn body fat – you have to activate these two important hormones. Yes, exercise activates your testosterone – but the more intense your workout – the more testosterone you produce! That’s the Key!
A good hour long class, may feel great and will be exhausting, but because you are having to conserve your energy to last an hour – you’re not really stressing those fast-twitch, anaerobic muscle fibers so much and they are the ones that activate your TT and GH. You’re still getting a great workout for stamina and endurance, which is what a lot of people want, it’s just not going to spike it as much as a shorter, more intense workout would.
It’s the fast twitch, anaerobic muscle fibers that make it happen, so you have to make sure your workout activates them. Endurance training or activities that last 30 minutes or longer, are probably activating your slow-twitch, aerobic muscle fibers, more so than your fast-twitch fibers.
Sprinting is another great way to activate those fast twitch fibers, but when it comes to strength training and whether it is with weights or body weight exercises…..you have to stress your muscles. This is the one problem I see more often with women than with men – they don’t push themselves hard enough when they do weight training. Not to say all women, but in general, men push themselves harder when it comes to weight training.
Too often, for both men and women, I’ll see someone stop after 10 reps when they could have done 12. So make sure you stress your muscles – otherwise there is no reason for them to change and become stronger and leaner.
I hope that helps some of you who have hit that plateau and are wondering what needs to change. If you like what you read, I hope you share it or ask questions.
Eat Right – Train Smart for your current level of health and fitness