Question: Fitness

I have lost about 25 kg in the last year and a half. But things have slowed down, I am not losing as much as fast as I used to, is there anything I could be doing to improve it? I do about an hour and a half of cardio and then strength training for 30 minutes. I have a cruise coming up and really want to be toned, especially my tummy. Any advice?


Hi Jenna-Lee! It sounds like you have hit a plateau. When wanting to lose weight, remember that the body adapts easily to stresses put on it, so you need to change your type of training regularly. There are so many ways to do this! You can try different exercise disciplines to challenge your body in new ways, or you can change up your existing routine – your number of sets and reps / speeding up your workout to do it in 10 minutes less than you usually do / training your weekly training schedule. Then, I think you need to switch up your cardio sessions. 1 and a half hours is very long! Anything over 45 minutes of cardio needs supplementation during your workout, as your glycogen stores run out and will then start eating precious muscle mass. This means a slower metabolism, and is often counter-productive to weight loss efforts. You want to have as much lean muscle mass as possible on your body to keep your body burning more calories at rest. In general, I choose short and intense cardio versus steady-state, moderate intensity, longer sessions. For a change, try shaving your cardio sessions down to 45 minutes, and inlcude sprinting intervals. These could be as short as 20 seconds when you’re starting out, followed by 60 seconds or so of a slower resting period. This will get you into your fat-burning zone faster than steady-state cardio. When it comes to strength training, lift heavy! You should be able to perform only 3 sets of each exercise, of roughly 8-12 reps, where you struggle on your final reps. Compound exercises will help you burn more calories per workout, Next up, maybe the help of a dietitian is required to check that your calorie in versus calorie out ratio is correct. If your losses are slowing down, it could mean that you are burning enough calories to maintain your weight when coupled with the calories you’re taking in. A bigger deficit may need to be created.

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