Les Mills PUMP is Busting Weightlifting Myths for Good
I’ve been interested in exercise and fitness for over twenty years so I’m constantly exposed to different ideas about weight training. There are a number of preconceived notions that many people have that are completely bogus, but nevertheless seem to be carved in granite because they never to go away. Even if science and research studies show them to be myths, these notions endure. I just got through my first round of Les Mills PUMP, which absolutely put to rest any lingering thoughts I might have previously held about these myths.
MYTH: The best way to lose weight is to diet and do a lot of aerobic exercise.
FACT: I admit that many years ago I believed this, too. While traditional aerobic exercises burn fat, doing them alone is not the most efficient way to burn fat. If you combine aerobic training with weight training, you’ll more than double your results. Studies have shown that a combination of aerobic exercise and weight training will help you develop muscle at the same time you’re burning fat. Therefore, you will shape and tone faster than you would if you only did one or the other. For the best (meaning fastest) weight loss transformation, you should lift weights, do aerobic exercises, AND watch what you eat. I should add that dieting alone is the WORST way to lose weight. When you go on a diet, you will certainly lose weight, but most of it will be from water and your muscle tissue breaking down. You do not want to lose muscle tissue because it helps to burn calories. Less muscle mass=fewer calories burned.
When you are doing Les Mills PUMP, you will get a serious cardio workout while at the same time building and toning your muscles. The workouts are so fast-paced, intense, and the rep counts so high that your heart rate will be elevated for almost the entire duration. If you want to do serious cardio and weight training simultaneously, Les Mills PUMP is the program to get the job done.
MYTH: The best way to burn calories is with cardio exercises.
FACT: It’s true that cardio exercise burns a lot of calories, it is not the best way to shed fat if that’s your goal. With conventional aerobic training such as jogging, walking, or medium intensity cardio exercises, you stop burning calories when you stop working out. That is, as long as you are performing the exercises, your body will burn calories at a higher rate. As soon as you stop, however, your body will resume its normal metabolism.
That’s where high intensity workouts such as Les Mills PUMP are different. During the workout, you will burn calories at an incredible rate (up to 600-800 calories per hour depending on your body composition). Even when you are finished with the workout, your body will continue burning calories long after. Almost always after a Les Mills PUMP workout, I would find that my heart rate is higher and I’m much warmer hours later, even if I’m doing nothing more strenuous than sitting in my chair and typing on the computer. This is called the EPOC effect (excess post-exercise oxygen consumption), which is a fancy way of saying Les Mills PUMP boosts your metabolism and increases your calorie burning for up to 24 hours afterward. You will not be able to achieve the same effect with traditional cardio exercises.
MYTH: Women get bulky if they lift weights.
FACT: I hear this a lot from female friends. They are afraid to even look at a heavy weight because they are fearful of turning into one of the freakish looking bodybuilders. The irony is that most body builders have to work really hard at getting big by spending hours at the gym every day lifting heavy weights, and eating almost all the time. Most women are not going to put in as much time at the gym, lift as heavy, or spend most their days eating protein rich foods. There’s no chance that a woman doing Les Mills PUMP can get bulky. For one, the program doesn’t use heavy weights. Instead, Les Mills PUMP uses a technique called the REP EFFECT, which is based on high repetition with lighter weights to maximize strength and endurance without overbuilding muscles. As I discussed above, building muscle is necessary so that you will increase your metabolism in order to maximize fat loss. That’s why lifting weights should be part of your exercise regimen if you want a full body transformation. However, you don’t have to get bodybuilder big to reap the benefits. Finally, most women simply don’t have enough of the male hormone testosterone to get big muscles.
MYTH: Fancy gym equipment are better for weight training than free weights or barbells.
FACT: Most people think that because weight machines are popular, they must be the most effective way to train with weights. Wrong! Fancy gym equipment may be comfortable and look impressive, but as far as performance goes, weight machines simply isolate the targeted muscle. Therefore, you are not getting any combined synergy from all that effort. The various muscle groups in the human body are designed to work together. When you use barbell weights, as you do with Les Mills PUMP, you use all of your muscles to stabilize. That means you’re not only exercising the muscle that’s lifting the weight. You’re also engaging the surrounding muscles and your core and abs. That takes a lot energy (calories)! Les Mills PUMP is designed to get you using more muscles at once—which means a quicker path to results because you’re burning more calories at once from engaging more muscles at the same time. In some exercises such as the Clean & Press, you will be working out practically your entire body, from the arms, shoulders, core, back, buttocks, legs, and downward. You can see how a workout like Les Mills PUMP can burn massive amounts of calories in a short time.
MYTH: Women and men need to train with weights differently.
FACT: There’s absolutely no reason why women and men can’t train in the same way to reach their body-transformation goals and get lean and strong. Women and men have the same exact group of muscles, so why should these similar muscles be trained differently? Women can do Les Mills PUMP to reshape and sculpt their bodies. Men can use Les Mills PUMP to build a strong, athletic, muscular looking physique. Men and women have different levels of the hormones responsible for muscle growth, so they will get different results even doing the same training. As you can see from the photo of the Les Mills PUMP trainers, the men look like men while the women look like women, even though they all do exactly the same exercises during each workout. The basic exercises of weight training, such as squats, lunges, curls, deadlifts, and presses, are some of the best exercises for anyone who wants to transform his or her body as efficiently as possible. Les Mills PUMP is simply one of the most efficient exercise programs for men and women to reach their health and fitness goals.