(This articles explains some of the physical principles
and reasons why the PACE Cardio Plan works so well.
By Dr. Allen Sears.)
Intense Exercise – or Natural?
I’m amazed when I watch pro athletes at the top of their games. They have incredible speed and power. And if you’re a reader you know I’m a tennis fan. I play tennis every morning. So I loved watching the Australian Open tennis tournament that just ended.
It’s pretty impressive to watch how strong and fast these men and women are. They hit the ball so hard, and can twist their bodies and do incredible things with a tennis racquet in their hands. Their bodies seem to be built for it, don’t they?
But what if I told you that you can have that same kind of lean, muscular body? In fact, you were designed for it. Let me explain…
In your native environment, you had to walk everywhere you wanted to go. Or row a boat. Or climb a hill… And if you wanted to eat, you had to go find your food. You either had to forage for nuts, fruits and other plants, or you had to chase down and catch an animal. Then you had to work to prepare your meal… skinning, plucking, cooking, cutting…
All that activity meant burning lots of calories that you then replaced by eating mostly protein, and some fruits and vegetables. And that’s how our bodies evolved over millennia. But we don’t spend our days hunting and gathering anymore. In fact, most of the activities you do today probably revolve around sports and gyms.
So most people rely on trainers and fitness “experts” who tell you if you want to melt fat you have to work out in the “fat-melting zone.” This involves doing hours of “cardio” training, or endless “aerobics” so you can use up your fat stores while you exercise. It almost sounds good, right? You melt off your fat and drop weight… Only that’s the opposite of what you should be doing.
You’re Training Your Body to Work Against You.
That’s because your body is made to store energy in your muscles, ready to use throughout the day to survive. We don’t do well taking in more food than we need to live. Your body’s not designed to get rid of extra calories from the grains and processed foods that make up the modern diet. So when you do eat a little more than your body needs, it just stores it as fat.
But if you work out in the “fat melting zone” you’re using that stored fat for energy. But that only teaches your body to store more fat so you have it available for energy during your workout. It’s almost impossible to drop weight this way.
The truth is, the real way to melt fat and stay lean is to use calories the way you were designed to use them.
That doesn’t mean you can’t use exercise to drop fat. Exercise is one of the most effective tools you can use to maintain your ideal weight.
But what you want to do is re-train your body so it performs like it was designed. That way, you can have the lean, muscular body nature intended for you.
And here’s how you do it:
• do sets of exercises that are progressively intense • rest in-between each set • exert yourself for no more than 12-15 minutes
It’s that simple.
And Here’s Why it Works
For the first 2-3 minutes of a workout you burn ATP, or adenosine triphosphate. This molecule is the basic unit of cellular energy. It is stored in the muscle cells and is available at any time. It is also your high-octane fuel for intense effort.
But there is only enough ATP for a few minutes of exercise. When your ATP stores are depleted, your body switches to glycogen, a carbohydrate stored in muscle tissue. Your glycogen stores will take you through about 15 minutes of exercise.
After both your ATP and glycogen stores have become depleted – about 20 minutes – you switch to fat. But if you stop before your body starts to use fat for energy, you stay out of the endless “melt fat/store fat” loop. Instead, your body learns to store energy in your muscles, NOT store it as fat for later use.
It does this through the adaptive changes your body makes to prepare for the next time you ask it to perform that same activity. It’s called “afterburn.”
Igniting After-burn is the Key to Dumping Fat
After intense exercise, you burn extra calories as your body repairs muscles and stores energy in them, and returns to its normal state. Since this can take from several hours to a full day, you will keep on burning calories long after the workout is over.
A Colorado State University study measured the changes induced by exercising this way. People exercised for 20 minutes in sets of two-minute intervals, followed by one minute of rest. The researchers found that they were still melting fat at an increased rate 16 hours after the exercise session! At rest, their fat oxidation was up by 62 percent.1 And the harder you train, the greater your post exercise metabolism.
In another study, researchers at Laval University in Quebec divided participants into two groups. One group cycled for 45 minutes without interruption. Another group cycled in numerous short bursts of 15 to 90 seconds, while resting in between.2 The long duration group burned twice as many calories. So you might assume that they would melt more fat.
However, when the researchers recorded their body composition measurements, it was the short-term interval group that showed the most fat loss.
In fact, the interval group lost nine times more fat than the endurance group for every calorie burned! And by the way, this is why many endurance athletes have body fat percentagesranging from 10-20 percent. Meanwhile, athletes like sprinters and basketball players – who run in short bursts with progressive intensity – have a well-muscled physique and usually carry only 4-8 percent body fat.
So, do you want 20 percent body fat, and to train your body to store more and more fat so you can use it while you work out? Or would you rather exert yourself for 12 minutes at a time, melt off fat the rest of the day, and be lean and ripped?
This is why we already have 60,000 people doing PACE, and this is why I like to talk to you about it often. Because getting you into a strong, lean body just like those tennis players I saw at the Australian Open is exactly what my PACE program helps you achieve.
And the good news is, even if you’re out of shape you can start with a challenge that’s within your reach. That’s because as I’ve shown you, you can’t build a fat-shredding body through endless treadmill workouts and painful weightlifting sessions. Instead, you want to exert yourself for just a few minutes at a time, and make the challenge you give yourself progressive. That way, you’ll have the athletic body you were designed for.