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Check out my last blog post about HITT by clicking here.
One of my favourite exercises so far was the lateral raises and front raises while balancing on the BOSU. The first time I attempted it, I fell off the BOSU so many times that I think I spent the first 60 seconds (of a 90-second exercise) just trying to get onto the darn thing! But when I finally – shakily – was able to balance on it and raise the weights without crashing to the floor, I felt victorious. I really loved the exercise, because not only does it work your arms and shoulders, but it also targets your entire core and legs because it requires so much focus with balancing. In fact, I adored the BOSU exercise so much that I’ve added it to my Open Sky store. You can get your very own BOSU to keep in your home! You might want to pick up a pair of dumbbells and a stability ball while you’re at it, too 😉
I have been tracking my food intake and exercises daily at the Aspire Fitness online program for the past week. I have used a number of online programs in the past, most notably the iVillage program and the FitDay program, and I am a big fan of online trackers. It’s amazing, the kind of databases that these online tracking programs have. There are a number of foods and exercises already in the databases, but you can also create custom foods and exercises. I had really good experiences with both the programs at iVillage and at FitDay when I used them years ago.
The Aspire Fitness online program is equally awesome. It is incredibly user-friendly, and I find myself happily inputting my food to gleefully see, after each meal, what my percentage of carbs, fats, and proteins is, and to look at how many calories I’ve burned versus how many calories I’ve eaten. It’s very straightforward and provides a wealth of information.
At first I thought that the program overestimates how much our basal metabolic rates are because mine said that I burn 2,205 calories just from living, at 5 feet tall – but then I realized that I had set it to my daily living as being “moderately active”. I’m fairly active in that I like to exercise, but my daily living tends to be standing in front of the computer, so I think that that counts as being “lightly active”. When I changed it to “lightly active”, my basal metabolic rate decreased to 1,956 calories burned. That still seems higher than I would have expected, but a little more appropriate.
Fifty minutes of activity – which is what I’m doing at Aspire Fitness three times a week – burns less than 150 calories (at my size, anyways. And providing that I’m entering it correctly. The whole “light”, “moderate”, and “vigorous” activity levels have always seemed awfully vague to me. But I digress). Most people drastically overestimate how much they burn while doing hardcore exercise. Even on days when we engage in strenuous activity, we probably do not need to eat much more than a couple hundred extra calories for fuel (if we want to maintain weight, that is). So in that way, it makes sense that my basal metabolic rate would be nearly 2,000 calories. I definitely eat around that much in a day!
I very much like the online program that Aspire Fitness uses. One of my favourite parts about it is that it holds me accountable. I need that accountability! I was hoping to stay within 1,400 to 1,800 calories each day, but I didn’t quite manage that over the weekend. Still trying! However, I’ve added up how many calories I have burned and consumed over the past week, and provided that I have counted up my numbers correctly, it looks as though I should have a calorie deficit of about 3,500 – equal to about a pound! So I have lost about a pound in the past week (I have not stepped on the scale, though, because I don’t want to step on a scale until I’m halfway through the program. I’m really hoping that I haven’t made a mistake in my numbers :)). If you check out a blog post that our dear Charlotte wrote recently, however, it looks as though some research disagrees with the whole “3,500 calories equals a pound of fat” concept. Hmmm. We shall see!
For anyone who doesn’t live in Winnipeg, or who does live in Winnipeg but can’t make it to the outskirts of the city to go to this gym, I recommend giving this online program a try. Not only will you be able to add friends to message for support, join challenges with other members, and track your nutrients and exercise, but you will also get one of the Aspire Fitness trainers to personally set up an exercise program just for you. All the benefits of having a personal trainer without leaving your home! Does it get much better than that?
Have you tried an online program? What’s your favourite? Do you find them helpful? Share your opinions in the comments section below!