There is a cardio craze going on out there (especially for women) and it needs to stop…or at least hugely subside. Excess gym cardio is not the answer to sustainable fat loss. Excess gym cardio is not the way to burn off all of those weekend delights and indulgences. Excess gym cardio is not the way to a slimmer, fitter, and healthier you.

Okay, I’m not dissing cardio altogether here. I’m just saying it’s over-emphasized as a fat loss dynamo, when in reality, it’s really not so. Cardio in moderation is just fine. Dedicating yourself to it likes it’s a part-time job is not.

Here’s why:

  1. Too much cardio can impair the production of the thyroid hormone T3 and its effectiveness and metabolism. This has been shown to lead to a potential hypothyroid condition. Yikes.
  2. Running on a regular basis tricks your body into survival mode. Your body views all of this consistent running as serious stress on the body. To preserve itself, it will change the way it releases fat cells overtime. In fact, it will stop releasing them altogether (its way of conserving energy). It will accumulate them making it incredibly difficult to burn fat. Where does the body take its energy from, then? Keep reading.
  3. Muscle. Too much steady-state cardio actually initiates the loss of muscle, which triggers a bone density decrease and the loss of strength. Not good.
  4. Another thing: Frequenting the treadmill is basically asking for a chronic injury to go down. Because the belt is propelled by itself, you don’t actively engage your posterior chain (hammies, glutes) that would normally be needed to “pull” the ground in front of you. Hence, you get over developed quads, which causes an imbalance in the body. Treadmills should be used in moderation.

Release yourself from the confines of excess gym cardio. Go lift some weights next time you are at the Pivotal Fitness Greenville gym. Go practice some Greenville yoga. Build strength. Eat a healthy, wholesome diet. Consider these health and fitness initiatives your main priorities. Cardio should be an infrequent, short side note.

When you were getting started, you had to build up the motivation to work out. Maybe your hobby is running, weight-lifting, biking, etc. Maybe you got started 10 years ago, and maybe you got started 10 weeks ago. Regardless, all of our Greenville gym members have one thing in common: You had to practice, make it part of your lifestyle and then learn to excel at your activity of choice. After some time, you’ve probably settled into your routine – and if our trainers have anything to say about it, you’ve probably even become good at it.

But now it might be time to shake things up. Maybe you’re ready to hit the next level of performance, break past a weight plateau or simply look forward to a new incentive to keep coming back each week. And we have the perfect recommendation for everyone, regardless of their skill level or type of workout: Set a new goal.

The best way to do this is by choosing a goal with a definitive end date, especially one that’s set by someone or something other than you. One great example is the marathon. You can look for a local event that’s coming up and suits your skill level – then sign up. Having that goal to look forward to will give you a new enthusiasm for hitting the treadmill. You may need to set higher limits or come in more often to meet the training requirements for your event. You may want to join with other runners from the gym or within the neighborhood. You can build a network of support at home and work.

Suddenly, the running you were already doing becomes a whole new agenda in light of this goal. It’s like adding the spark back to your romance after some time has passed. Your relationship to the gym and your love of your personal favorite fitness activity is almost like keeping the excitement alive with another person!

Of course, the marathon for you might be a swim meet, a bike tour or a weight-lifting competition. It may even be something as simple as making a friendly arrangement with a spouse, friend or fellow gym member to compete for miles, hours or other stakes over a predetermined amount of time. By setting a goal like this, you get a fresh flush of motivation that you may not have had since you first started coming to our Pivotal Fitness Greenville sports club.

Check back next week for Part 2 of the process, which is fulfilling your ambition.