There is a common misconception about weight that may cause people to have a hard time reaching their fitness goals. That misconception is based on the belief that a person's weight reflects how much fat their body contains. What actually needs to be determined is the body's fat percentage. Typically a man should not have more than 15 percent body fat, nor should a woman exceed 22 percent.
These figures can be slightly adjusted when the person's height and other statistics are taken into consideration. Muscle weighs more than fat, so it's not uncommon for people who have been working out to look at the scale in disappointment after putting a lot of effort into their training. They may think that because they don't see a significant weight loss that their fitness plan is failing. What they fail to realize is that they probably lost fat but gained muscle, so the numbers that they are reading do not accurately reflect the progress they have made. Even without exercise, the body's metabolism burns calories, even as you sleep. Unfortunately, if you take in more calories than you burn off, it will result in fat storage.
3500 calories equal 1 pound. In order to lose a pound, you have to burn off that many calories. This may seem daunting but remember that your body is burning calories all the time. By instituting an exercise program into your schedule, you will burn calories more efficiently.
Combine that with a sensible eating plan and you will be well on your way to fitness and fat loss. One of the best ways to burn fat and get in shape is by cross training. Cross training involves using more than one mode of exercise.
An example would be to swim, ride a bike and walk. One of the advantages of this form of fitness program is that there is less chance for boredom. By doing only one form of exercise, you can easily tire of it. By using three forms, the routine is constantly changing, so boredom is avoided.
Another advantage of this type of training is that all of your muscle groups are being worked and developed. Muscle also burns fat, so by developing the ones in your body, you can speed your weight loss even more. As you begin your program, keep records of the time and distance that you cover. As you become fit, you will build up your endurance and will be able to measure your progress.
It will also allow you to know when it's time to step up the program. By engaging in cross training, you will be able to strengthen your body, your heart and your muscle groups. You won't get burned out by doing the same routine over and over and before you know it you will have reached your fitness goals.
Gregg Hall is an author living in Navarre Florida. Find more about this as well as physical fitness products at http://www.physicalfitnessproducts.com