Sunday, August 06, 2006

Pear-shaped Women

I see it all the time - women who are strong in their hips but have very little tone or strength in their shoulders and arms.

If you have extra weight in your hips and you want to burn that off, the fastest way to do so is not by cardio and not by Pilates. You should lift weights. Specifically, upper body weight training exercises.

Here's why:

When you increase your lean body mass your metabolism (base metabolic rate) increases. That means you'll be burning more calories all day long - even when not exercising. If you're lifting with your shoulders, arms, back and chest, then that muscle growth will effectively eat away the extra weight in your hips. In 3-6 month time, your pear shape will morph into that of a beautiful hourglass.

Running or elliptical training won't build lean body mass because you're using the aerobic energy system. To gain lean body mass, you need to train aenorobically (weight training). It is true that you could run aenorobically and gain lean body mass, but that means lots of sprints (think Olympic sprinters). Sprints are great, but chances are, you may not be ready for the high impact demands of sprinting.

Here's a good routine to build those upper body muscles:

1. Upper Body Ergometer for 6 minutes to waken and stabilize your shoulder capsules.

2. Romanian Deadlifts to hit all large muscles groups and prep your body for isolation-type exercises.

3 and 4. Pullup & Dip Machine for chest and back. Use wider grips and plenty of assistance from machine.

5. Seated Overhead Press for shoulders (first with bar and then with dumbbells)

6. Seated Double Arm Extensions with dumbbells for triceps (do not alternate).

7. Arm Curls for biceps (bar, then alternate with dumbbells).

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About Me

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NY, New York, United States
I'm 34 years old, the proud father of 2 beautiful children and husband to Jennifer, a beautiful, smart, and very caring woman. I'm an athlete - someone that was blessed with the ability to move fast and fluidly past, around, up and over my opponents. But, my body now reminds me that those days are numbered. I'm the Founder of Agile Fitness, a company dedicated to helping others achieve their fitness goals. Resume: - Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist ('96). - Bachelor of Arts & Science, University of Delaware, ('95) - Masters in Business Administration, Baruch College Zicklin School of Business ('01)