If you’re not fortunate enough to already be an EFM Health Clubs member, getting started at the gym can be overwhelming, especially if your gym is a big one.
There are many different types of machines to choose from, not to mention the weight lifting area and maybe even a pool. So how should your ideal gym workout start?
Unless you’re really eager to go swimming, there’s a simple answer to this: always choose the rowing machine first.
How rowing helps you lose weight
One of the most effective ways to lose weight is to use a rowing machine. To maximise the benefits, you should combine rowing with a healthy diet.
Many rowing enthusiasts also use a heart rate program to keep the training at optimum level and lose weight fast, but this is optional!
How To lose Weight With Rowing
You may wonder how rowing helps you lose weight; with a regular program and determination, you can burn fat and reduce weight the healthy way without having to starve yourself crazy!
Here are some tips to help you maximise the benefits of rowing.
1. Sit taller
With a proper body alignment, it is possible to fire up your core and be in optimum shape. When you sit as tall as you possibly can and keep from rounding your back, you will be optimally positioned for the rowing action.
It is important that you lift your chest, keep the chin up and look ahead.
This position will keep your airways open and make your workouts more effective, as well as training our core muscles, which helps with posture during the day.
2. Focus on the legs
Drive your legs into the heel rest as you make the strokes to develop more power int he stroke. Many people make the mistake of using the upper half of the body as the main driver but put those powerful leg muscles of yours to good use!
This will also help you in burning calories and give you more power to speed up, hence burning more fat. 20 percent of your efforts should come from the arms (great for arm toning), 30 percent from back and ore, and 50 percent from the legs.
3. Do intervals of power strokes
As a basic routine guide, which should vary for you depending on your current conditioning, an example of interval training would be ten power strokes at a speed of 24 strokes per minute, then at 26 rows per minute, and finally at 28 per minute. Then cruise for 15 seconds and repeat.
This gradual increase in intensity, followed by a short rest break is a great way to break up your routine but it’s also good for burning maximal calories.
4. Work a ladder drill
As a guide to how this would work, start your session with a lower speed of about 22 strokes per minute then increase it one stroke every 30 seconds till you are rowing at 30 strokes per minute.
This is designed to increase your rowing speed gradually while increasing calories burned. This drill will move you from aerobic to an anaerobic zone. Reverse this drill till you reach the speed you started at.
If you’re starting at a lower level of fitness, you could change the time of increase to 15 seconds, or start at 18 strokes per minute and go up to 26. Do what works for you!
5. Do endurance training
It is crucial that you add slow and steady endurance exercises to your routine. This supercharges burning of calories. Pushing your heart for a specified period can help in burning fat faster.
Use medium intensity rowing of about 26 strokes a minute for roughly eight minutes at a constant pace. To make it even better, top this endurance training with a ladder drill.
6. Mix up daily rowing plan
Another trick to keeping your body at its optimum fat burning mode is to keep it guessing. Do not have a regular set of exercises, keep mixing them up.
Some days you can have shorter high-intensity training while on other days you can include long endurance sessions.
Rowing is an efficient way to keep healthy and lose weight since it efficiently combines cardio and strength training. The good thing about rowing is that it does not have to be long to be beneficial.
Benefits Of Rowing
Don’t believe us? Here are 5 reasons to go to the rower first:
1. Maximize your calorie burning potential
Every exercise will help you burn calories but few are as effective as a rowing machine. In fact, competitive rowers actually burn twice as many calories in a 2,000 metre exercise as a runner burns on a 3,000 metre track. This is incredible potential and makes the rowing machine your ultimate weight loss ally.
2. Build ALL your muscles
One of the big claims most exercise machines make but don’t really follow through in is a total body exercise. While it’s true that an elliptical machine, treadmill or exercise bike will help you build leg muscles and abdominal muscles, these machines aren’t ideal for building upper body strength, especially arm strength. Rowing actually impacts every muscle group, including your biceps, triceps and lower back muscles.
3. Protect your joints
The biggest drawback of exercise machines like elliptical machines or treadmills is the potential for injury following repeated use. Because a rowing machine actually has you sitting down a rowing machine is far kinder to your joints than even the most well padded treadmill. You are much less likely to get an injury during a rowing workout and you will have significantly less wear and tear on your joints over time.
4. Improve your balance
Rowing works on your core muscles and lower back muscles which are key to maintaining your balance. Strengthening these muscles will also make it easier to perform a wider range of movements. Combine rowing with some yoga and your flexibility will quickly become better than it ever has.
5. Reduce stress
All exercise acts to stimulate pleasure hormones in the brain and reduce the stress hormone, cortisol. Because of its low impact nature and simple movements, rowing is one of the most relaxing exercises you can do.
You’ll be working your muscles hard but working your mind into a serene state of calm. And once you’ve gotten the hang of it you can take that skill out on a camping trip to enjoy an even more relaxing rowing experience.
Rowing is one of the most effective forms of exercise you can do. Even if this is all you have time for at the gym you can count on major improvements to your health and strength with regular rowing.
Make sure it’s always your first stop and you will reap the rewards.