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How To Get A Six-Pack

Question: I have gotten to the point in my fitness program where I am happy with the results I am getting in most parts of my body.  But I still have a problem area. I can't seem to get the definition I want in my abs. Any suggestions? I want a well defined 6-pack!  

Answer: Often I hear from people who have a specific 'problem area' they want to work on and many times it is the mid-section or the abdominals.  I am asked if it is possible to strengthen a certain part of the abdominals such as the lower abs, or the obliques (love handles). The truth is that the abdominal muscles usually work in unison and it is hard to isolate specific parts.  However, different positions and angles can help shift the emphasis of the exercise to a specific part of the abdominals. Basically we divide the abdominals as follows: Upper abs, lower abs, obliques and transverse abdominals.  The transverse abdominals are the muscles that pull your belly button in toward your spine. In order to get the most out of your abdominal workout no matter what angle you choose, always start the exercise by consciously engaging the transverse abdominal muscles by simply pulling your belly button slightly towards the spine, then execute the exercise while maintaining that posture. This simple 'trick' will help you get better results no matter what part of the abdominals you are going for!

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Have a question for Gilad? Click HERE and send it in! Gilad will choose one question each week to answer.

Find out more information about Gilad and his Fitness DVD's HERE.

Exercise Results

Question: I started an exercise program last week and I can't see any improvement. How will I know when it is working?

Answer: There are several things to look for to see if your fitness level is improving. Often when you are in the middle of something it is difficult to see the small changes that are occurring. That's why record-keeping can really help you. It gives you written proof of the improvements that are happening. Keep a notebook documenting your exercise sessions.  Include facts like when you exercised, for how long, what you did, how far you went, how fast, how you felt, how much weight you lifted and how many times, what stretching exercises you did, etc.

Look for the following signs of improvement:
  1. Increase in endurance: The ability to train for a longer period of time without becoming exhausted.
  2. Increase in strength: The ability to lift more weight or perform more repetitions without becoming exhausted.
  3. Increase in flexibility: The ability to perform stretches with more range than before.
  4. Decrease in body fat: A leaner look. Previous areas of fat deposits such as love-handles, thighs and buttocks shrinking and muscles beginning to show through.
  5. Improvement in appearance and health: You will feel it and know it. It is an unmistakable feeling.

 


Have a question for Gilad? Click HERE and send it in! Gilad will choose one question each week to answer.

Find out more information about Gilad and his Fitness DVD's HERE.

Rest Up!

Question: In your fitness programs you always recommend getting plenty of rest. Why is rest so important?

Answer: The three most important elements to your fitness program are healthy eating, a regular exercise program and REST! Rest is often overlooked! Making sure you get enough rest and a good night's sleep becomes even more important if you are exercising vigorously. A good night's sleep is essential to our physical as well as mental health and positively affects our memory, creativity and overall well-being.Many processes happen during our sleep time.  Growth hormone, which is essential for recovery and improving fitness levels, is released during our sleep. Melatonin which is known as the 'sleep hormone' is often taken to recover from jet lag.  Melatonin is released during sleep.  It is an important and powerful antioxidant that plays a crucial role in maintaining good health and helping to reduce cell damage.

So, how much sleep do you need? The answer is that it varies from person to person. The bottom line is that a good night's sleep is a powerful tool to help you maintain your health and fitness levels. May you all have a good and restful night...!

Have a question for Gilad? Click HERE and send it in! Gilad will choose one question each week to answer.

Find out more information about Gilad and his Fitness DVD's HERE.

Curb Your Sweet Tooth

Question: I have a very active sweet tooth and that is my downfall when it comes to losing weight. Is there any 'cure' for a sweet tooth? 

Answer: The problem with eating sweets is that the more sweets you eat, the more you crave them.  Somehow we have to break that cycle. When you are craving sweets, try substituting a piece of fresh fruit instead. See if that curbs your appetite.  Fruit is just like dessert but with all those extra vitamins and minerals along for the ride. And, do yourself a favor. Don't buy candy, cookies, ice cream, etc. If you don't have them readily available, you can't eat them. Stock up on plenty of fresh fruit instead. Doesn't a handful of grapes or a bowl of fresh strawberries sound good right about now?

Have a question for Gilad? Click HERE and send it in! Gilad will choose one question each week to answer.

Find out more information about Gilad and his Fitness DVD's HERE.

Why is Swimming So Difficult?

Question: After reading your suggestion about a 'knee-friendly' swimming workout, I started to swim. I can hold my own with your aerobics workouts but I find myself getting winded much more easily when I swim. Why is this?

Answer: Swimming laps is a great form of cardiovascular exercise. However, even people who exercise regularly and think they are in good shape are often surprised to find that they can only swim a few continuous laps of the pool before feeling very out of breath. Part of the reason is that swimming, unlike cycling or running, involves working the whole body, and particularly the upper body. Also, more than other exercises, swimming requires the conscious control and coordination of breathing with motion, something that swimmers often find exhausting.  However, as you spend more time in the water, your breathing will become as natural in swimming as it is in land based sports.

Have a question for Gilad? Click HERE and send it in! Gilad will choose one question each week to answer.

Find out more information about Gilad and his Fitness DVD's HERE.

Swimming for Conditioning

Question: I am considering joining a fitness facility with a lap pool. How does swimming stack up against other forms of exercise?

Answer: Swimming involves all of the major muscles in the body, and as a result, provides the body with excellent overall conditioning as well as aerobic benefits. Swimming has the added benefit of being a nearly non-impact exercise with few stress-related injuries. The buoyancy water provides reduces pressure on the joints and bones.

But as long as you are joining a complete facility, I suggest you take advantage of the machines and weights as well. Putting a little variety in your workout makes it more interesting and will keep you coming back for more. 

 


Have a question for Gilad? Click HERE and send it in! Gilad will choose one question each week to answer.

Find out more information about Gilad and his Fitness DVD's HERE.

Bone Building Exercises

Question: Do you have any exercises that you can recommend for bone building?

Answer: The best exercises you can do for bone building are resistance exercises with weights. Outside of some of my DVD's such as 'sculpt and tone' 'cuts and curves' I would highly recommend getting into the gym and incorporate free weights into your regiment.


Have a question for Gilad? Click HERE and send it in! Gilad will choose one question each week to answer.

Find out more information about Gilad and his Fitness DVD's HERE.

Cross-Training

Question: I have been doing your aerobic workouts (the TV shows) for about 3 months now and like the results. However, I think I am ready for the next step. What do you suggest?

Answer: I suggest you mix it up a little. Jog, ride a bicycle, even start doing some weight training. This is what is referred to as cross-training. I find that cross-training is the best way to balance a good workout program. It eliminates the typical 'burnout' or 'boredom' syndrome of doing one single activity over and over. It is also more versatile and therefore easier for anyone with a busy schedule. It keeps your fitness activities more healthy, fun and alive. It also allows your body more rest between repetitions of the same activity.

Have a question for Gilad? Click HERE and send it in! Gilad will choose one question each week to answer.

Find out more information about Gilad and his Fitness DVD's HERE.

Cravings

Question: Why do we crave foods that aren't good for us?

Answer: That is a complex question with many different answers based on each individual. Let's just look at one all encompassing answer for now...advertising. We have been exposed to advertising our entire lives. We have seen so many commercials and print ads that advertise fast foods, sugar, cigarettes and alcoholic beverages that they have to affect us. They show beautiful people with beautiful bodies photographed in exotic locations holding in their hands cans of...you know the rest. 

What's wrong with this picture? Obviously, the ads are not telling the whole truth. You can be sure that those beautiful bodies are not regularly eating and drinking what they are advertising. They are professional models and they get paid to glamorize the consumption of certain products. You will never see an ad showing an intoxicated driver coming out of his wrecked car holding a beer can in his hand and telling you to "Go for it!".
Let's face it...we have all been programmed by a lifetime of advertising.  Fight it and you will reap the benefits.

Have a question for Gilad? Click HERE and send it in! Gilad will choose one question each week to answer.

Find out more information about Gilad and his Fitness DVD's HERE.

Is Steak Bad For You?

Question: I love meat....but I love fruits and vegetables too. I trim as much fat as I can from my steak whenever I eat it. If you make an effort to eat your steak as lean as possible, is it still bad for you?

Answer: You have probably heard that all calories are not created equal. It's true. Calories from fat are actually more fattening than calories from other sources. Carbohydrates and proteins (including fat-free steak) both weigh in at only 4 calories per gram while fats weigh in at a whopping 9 to 11 calories per gram! (Please note that it is impossible to trim ALL of the fat off of steak.) This means that you are getting 2 ½ times more calories from fat than from equal amounts of carbohydrates (fruits and vegetables) or protein. As you can see, it is a lot smarter to get your calories from carbohydrates. Not only can you eat more with less calories to worry about, but the calories you get from carbohydrates are a lot more efficient and easily used by the body. 

So keep trimming as much fat as you can from your steak and consider substituting fish or skinless chicken more often...and don't be afraid to eat large servings of vegetables.


Have a question for Gilad? Click HERE and send it in! Gilad will choose one question each week to answer.

Find out more information about Gilad and his Fitness DVD's HERE.

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