The 10 Commandments of
Effective Fitness From
eDiets - The online diet, fitness, and healthy living resource
If in-your-face fitness expert Adam
Zickerman has his way, his tombstone epitaph will read: He made sedentary, fat
women understand they need to weight train to lose weight.
It may seem a little off the wall, but then
so does the authors controversial stance against cardio activity.
Zickerman has basically labeled heart-pumping, sweat-beading cardio exercise
He's not about to win a popularity contest
among fitness experts. He says his goal is to simply help overweight men and
women make the most of their fitness experience.
On CNNs Crossfire he squared
off with cardio queen Denise Austin. Even though his views were in total
contrast with those of the perky blonde proponent of aerobics, his mere
presence on the show was enough proof that Zickerman has arrived as a respected
figure in the field of fitness.
His workout program is being taken very
seriously. Zickerman has thousands of clients and his new book is racing up the
best-seller charts. He won't stop pressing until he undoes everything
youve ever come to believe about the benefits of cardio.
So whats his beef with sweating to
the oldies or kicking it up a notch at Jazzercise? Zickerman simply stands by
his belief that cardio is not the shining beacon of metabolism-revving weight
loss. Just do the math, he says. If you burn a couple hundred calories doing 45
minutes of cardio, and there are 3,500 calories in a pound, imagine how long it
will take you to burn five pounds.
Zickerman, the owner and founder of InForm
Fitness Studios and the author of Power of 10: The
Once-A-Week Slow Motion Fitness Revolution (HarperCollins), is a
major proponent of the philosophy that less is definitely more. Forget
exercising five days a week, 30 minutes a day. By his standards, all you need
is 20 minutes weight training, once or twice a week. He stresses very slow
movements. The gold standard: 10 seconds up and 10 seconds down. Yep, each rep
in his plan takes 20 seconds.
Another difference of established fitness
opinion: Zickerman does not call for a warm-up period. Also, his routines
involve no herky-jerky up-and-down movements. Instead, youre moving in
slow motion, emphasizing each and every movement. Your muscles sustain a
constant, steady load for five to eight reps so you end up getting the most
from your moves, according to Zickerman.
When it comes to reaping the maximum
benefits of physical fitness, the party line has moved away from cardio and
toward weight-bearing exercises over the last few years, he says. Thats
partly because there's evidence that lifting weights tones muscles, increases
bone density, prevents heart disease, boosts the metabolism and much more.
Zickerman says he has taken the most recent findings on weight training and put
a personal twist on them.
What makes my weight training program
so different than every single thing out there is that we dont emphasize
the number of reps or the amount of weight as the end goal itself,
Zickerman tells eDiets. What you want to go for is muscle fatigue.
Its quality not quantity.
Although the benefits of strength training
have become common knowledge, there are still those individuals who continue to
swear by cardio. And that will be their downfall, insists the well-built
promoter of the Zickerman method.
He notes: Not enough people realize
that strength training is the key to fitness. There are those who will finally
say to themselves, Im sick of this weight. Ive got to lose 30
pounds. Im going to start doing some cardio. Thats their
first thought. Then they get frustrated when they dont lose. They think
diet and cardio will make them lose weight. Meanwhile, theyre probably
losing just as much as they would had they adjusted their diet alone.
They think walking on the treadmill
three times a week at a low intensity is doing a lot for them. Little do they
Zickerman says to get in the best shape of
your life, you should included three core pillars into your routine: exercise,
nutrition, and rest and recovery. The only diet he advocates is a well-balanced
meal plan that includes six small meals a day. The resting period is perhaps
one of the most crucial points of his program. While most fitness regimens
advocate resting 24 to 48 hours, Zickerman believes it takes double that time
The more intense the exercise is, the
more intense the rest has to be," he explains. "You have to take it more
seriously in order to not burn yourself out. Sleep, massage, yoga, stretching,
meditation and breathing are good things to control the heart rate.
Take the time you would normally spend at
the gym and put that toward rest and recovery activities, he says. To find out
if youre on the right track when it comes to fitness, check out
Zickermans 10 commandments.
The 10 Commandments of
1. The Speed Commandment: Thou Shalt
Perform Repetitions That Are 10 Seconds Up, 10 Seconds Down.
2. The Breathing Commandment: Thou
Shalt Not Hold Your Breath, but Shall Breathe Freely and Evenly, Always.
3. The Motion Commandment: Thou
Shalt Never Jerk The Weights Up or Down, but Shall Be Smooth and Constant.
4. The Number of Reps Commandment:
Thou Shalt Do the Number of Reps It Takes for Your Muscles to Run Out of Gas,
Until You Cannot Do Another One; Then Try to Push for 10 More Seconds.
5. The Number Of Exercises Per Workout
Commandment: Thou Shalt Be Done After About 6 Different Exercises or Sets
If You Work Out Correctly.
6. The Correct Weight Commandment:
Thou Shalt Choose a Weight Where You Reach Your Limit at About 6 to 8 Reps When
You First Begin Training.
7. The No-Stopping Commandment: Thou
Shalt Move Quickly from Exercise To Exercise Until The Workout Is Done.
8. The Focus Commandment: Thou Shalt
Have a Zen-like Focus at All Times to Concentrate on Form, Motion and Speed.
9. The Number-Of-Workouts-Per-Week
Commandment: Thou Shalt Do About One Workout Per Week -- Resting in Between
for 5 to 7 days; However, You Mayest Do a Lighter Workout, Twice a Week, If You
Feel Like It.
10. The Equipment Commandment: Thou
Shalt Do Best and Be Safest If You Use Machines; However, Ill Also Show You How
to Do It At Home.
What eDiets Says...
eDiets Fitness Expert
When one is attempting to reach low
body fat levels, cardiovascular exercise is necessary. It is a fact that many
people perform excessive amounts of cardio to lose body fat and sacrifice much
needed muscle tissue. Muscle tissue actually helps the body burn additional
calories per day and excessive cardio works against this.
However, one must be careful when
promoting an all or nothing training philosophy. The key to
successful body fat loss is intense weight training, moderate amounts of
cardiovascular exercise and proper nutrition that places one in a calorie
deficit to achieve low body fat levels. In addition, one would have to place
rigid demands on their day-to-day caloric intake without moderate amounts of
cardio. Also, when performed in moderation, cardio helps to significantly
increase energy. Balance is the key, not total elimination.