Friday, 20 September 2013

What’s The Best Fitness Discipline To Lose Weight

Over the years I have read so many different news and magazine articles covering the discussion of fitness and weight loss. Let’s face it, fat loss remains one of the main reasons why people choose to exercise. So what type of exercise works best for fat loss? Should we be joining a zumba class, getting to grips with vibrating plates or signing up with a personal trainer?

In this experiment I put 5 popular fitness activities to the test. I followed each activity for 4 weeks and 3 hours a week. I maintained the same diet on each activity. Here is what I discovered:-

Vibration Plates
(Score 5/10)
I first used these whilst I was on holiday in Dubai. The hotel I was staying at had a room full of them. I tried them and it felt very odd. Initially I was not that keen. But when I heard of how effective they can be, I signed up to a course of sessions back home in London. This was a 6 week vibrating plate course consisting of 3 sessions a week.

After 4 weeks I had lost 3 pounds in body weight. Okay this isn’t much but I definitely felt more toned. The cost of the 4 week program was £225.00

Zumba Class
(Score 6/10)
Now this I was really looking forward to. I had heard so much about it that I couldn’t wait to give it a try. I signed up for 4 weeks of zumba consisting of 3 classes a week. I found the sessions difficult to master to begin but by week 2, I was finding my feet (so to speak).
After 4 weeks I had lost 4 pounds in body weight. I felt really fit and my body was definitely more toned. The cost of the 4 week program was £140.00. Definitely the best value for money program out of all those I tried.

Personal Training (Score
This was the one that scared me the most. Would I be laughed at by my trainer, would I be humiliated? All these questions ran through my head. The reality was a lot more pleasant than I suspected. My trainer was lovely and she really impressed me with her knowledge. However, she made me work hard and this was the toughest option of them all. I signed up to 4 weeks of training consisting of 3 sessions a week.
After 4 weeks I had dropped 9 pounds and had really toned my stomach, legs and arms. This was head and shoulders the most successful result out of all the plans I tried. I felt I looked the best out of all the different exercises too.
The 4 week program cost me £550 – the most expensive option, so for that reason I cannot give it full marks, but pretty close!

The Gym
(Score 6/10)
So I joined a gym on a temporary 4 week contract. I attended 2-3 times every week and was given a program (for free) by a fitness instructor. This involved moving through a circuit of machines. I have to say I did find it the most boring of all the programs I followed, but it was good value for money.
I lost 4 pounds in the 4 weeks and the membership cost me £70 which was good value. However, I struggled to keep motivated and by week 2 was finding the program boring.

Running Club (Score 3/10)
I joined a local running club. These have become really popular in the recession. This was the cheapest option but not being a natural runner I was slightly nervous if I would get left behind. Lucky for me I was put in a beginners class – and I found it okay to begin. I attended for 4 weeks, but I did pick up more injuries here then any other exercise I tried. I developed shin splints, excruciating pain in my hip flexors and then excruciating pain on the tops of my feet – so much so that I had to go and get my feet x-rayed as I was sure I had fractured something! Perhaps my running style or footwear was to blame, as not everyone had these problems but it did put me off road running.
I lost just 4 pounds and experienced so much pain that meant it really put me off running! The cost of 4 weeks membership was cheap though at just £60

Overall I achieved the best results through personal training, but this was also the most expensive option. I think however, if you can afford it then the results are really worthwhile. I did my personal training through based in London.

For those on smaller budgets I can really recommend Zumba classes. They helped me to lose weight but just less intensively compared to the personal training. Most gyms provide these classes for free including Fitness First and Virgin Active. However, I did mine through a local drop-in class held in my son's school sports hall.

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