Monday 20 November 2017

Shape Up: Give yourself the best gift ever -- a buff body that's envied by all

Library Image. Photo: Getty Images
Library Image. Photo: Getty Images

Damien Maher

The countdown to Christmas is on and the competition for your money is heating up. The singer Michael Buble arrived into Dublin recently to turn on Grafton Street's Christmas lights, and with it the official start of spending season.

The urgency to spend your money is increasing but there's urgency in another area too and that's your health -- it's not only the turkey that has been packing on the pounds.

There only three weeks left to your Christmas party and all those social gatherings that make this time of year so special. You will get opportunities to see returning friends and family who will no doubt have changed since last year -- how they look, their hair, skin and body shape. You might not say it directly to someone, but your mind is thinking that their bodies have changed and not for the better! But what about your own?


Your appearance can have a massive influence on how much you enjoy your holidays, as your energy, confidence and self-esteem can impact on everything from your health to your choice of clothes.

Plus, according to research done at the University Of Washington obese people come at the bottom of the sexual attractiveness scale.

Over half the Irish population is overweight or obese but a key problem is that many people put off doing anything about it. You may delay but time will not. Success coach Bob Proctor was renowned for saying that a sense of urgency creates action and if your goal is to look your best on Christmas Day you need to act now.

Four weeks is enough time to start making a serious dent in your body's fat deposits, but if you want to make an easy job seem mighty hard, just keep putting off doing it.

Tomorrow is often the busiest day of the week and as the clock ticks closer to lift-off, marketers use their ammunition to attack your insecurities with offers to heal your pain.

Weight-loss shakes will reel you in with rapid weight-loss claims that will result in a loss of muscle. This loss of muscle will slow down your metabolism and you will get the well-known rebound weight.

Most women know there is no quick fix but they buy the magazines anyway because hope springs eternal. We are being brainwashed into thinking that we can get success without work.

If time is a problem, you need to put yourself first and schedule your training first and get it done before work so it is not sacrificed if you have to stay late in the office. There is the option of hiring a trainer to set you a specific training programme, which will help you attain your goals quicker, increase your accountability and get you training on set days.

If your goal is fat loss, you need to step away from the reduced-calorie diet and aerobic exercise methods. Time after time studies have shown that all these do is result in the loss of fat-burning muscle.

It takes approximately 50 calories to maintain 1lb of active muscle per day so 10lbs of muscle kept active for seven days is equal to 3,500 calories, which will burn off 1lb of fat per week.

In other words, you don't want to lose this muscle. Muscle increases your resting metabolic rate -- like a car stopped at traffic lights, it's still consuming energy.


Research shows that more calories are burned after resistance training than aerobic training. By combining interval training with resistance training you will increase the EPOC (excess post-exercise oxygen consumption) dramatically.

EPOC means that you will burn most of the calories after training, therefore increasing the amount of calories you burn during the week.

At Be fit For Life we are constantly testing and tweaking our methods to maximise our clients' results in minimum time. We recently ran a 'beta-testing' group through a rapid fat loss formula.

We integrated the methods described above and worked on keeping the exercises simple. If you are interested in this programme go to to make your dreams of a slighter Christmas come true.

The science of training is only important if you decide to take action. If you want to change your body shape before Christmas, take action and make it a Christmas to remember.

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