Sometimes we hear “fitness trend” and think weird weight loss hacks––ever seen the old-timey exerciser belt and wooden treadmills? Or maybe you remember Sauna Pants? No? Definitely, definitely Google it.
But the best health and fitness trends are built on good science, great intentions and the dedication to healthy diet and exercise. Here are some trends we think are worth your attention in 2017.
Women have traditionally spent significantly more time in cardio training vs. weight training thanks to a common misconception that weight training will make you “look bulky”. However, researchers have found that not only does weight and resistance training lead to fat loss, but also maintains fat-free mass and your resting energy expenditure (how many calories you burn at rest) better than traditional cardio (1). #womenwholift is not only an empowering hashtag, it’s a movement sweeping across the US, and women are benefitting big time.
Not only are these new super-efficient HIIT workouts great for a busy lifestyle, they help you hit on more health goals than sticking to just your usual run routine––improved heart health, weight loss, muscle gain, and no equipment is required! Not only do you burn more calories during a HIIT workout, but the effect of all that intense exertion kicks your body’s repair cycle into hyperdrive. That means you burn more fat and calories in the 24 hours after a HIIT workout than you do after, say, a steady-pace run. Get started with this HIIT workout with Sierra Nielsen!
The November Project
How can you join? Simple… Just show up! This FREE group exercise movement started in Boston and has become a worldwide self-proclaimed “Tribe” of athletes, olympians, weekend warriors and “recent couch potatoes just looking to kickstart their healthy life choices”. The workouts are hard, the humor is never-ending, and the positive motivation is more than enough to keep you coming back for more. Look for a The November Project chapter near you, and if you’re community is missing out, start one. And then? Just show up!
Exercise is medicine
According to a 2015 study, more than half of the physicians trained in the United States receive no formal education in physical activity (2). Several programs across the country are working to change that, teaching medical students how to counsel their patients to exercise, one of the most effective forms of preventive medicine. Beyond medical school, the movement is taking hold and local practitioners, caretakers, and those generally interested in the improvement of their own health are looking into a new prescription – the US national physical activity guidelines recommend 150 minutes of moderate activity, and/or 75 minutes of vigorous activity, each week for adults and at least 60 minutes a day for kids.
Post workout protein recovery
We all know that what you eat and drink is critical to reaching your fitness goals, but we now also know that timing is a crucial part of this equation. Fitness and nutrition expert Sierra Nielsen explains, “There are two major things your body will typically need after a workout. Protein and carbohydrates. Carbs to help replace muscle glycogen and protein to help repair and rebuild your muscles. The amount of carbs and protein you need depends on several factors including the workout itself, your training schedule, your body composition and goals, but most people will reap huge rewards from 20-25 grams of protein immediately after a workout.” Protein shakes, bars, and smoothies are quickly becoming a post-workout must for those looking to get the most out of their routine. Try this Orgain Post-Workout Berry Blast Protein Smoothie after your next session!