Sunday, November 4, 2007

Q and A of the day

I need to lose weight off my arms, back and thighs. Can I just concentrate on those?

When we perform exercise of any type, we are placing a stress on the body which is general in nature affecting the body as a whole system. Whatever muscle group or body part we would like to focus on has an indirect effect on the whole body, which is suggesting that by performing larger movements requires more energy resulting in bigger demand from the body as a unit, including the arms, back and thighs. These exercises are called compound or multi-joint movements and include; squats, chin-ups, dips, deadlifts.

The body is a wonderful, diverse and resilient force! However, there are many factors to consider which will dictate our potential for achieving the absolute ideal and proportioned physique - these factors combine and make up what is called genetics.

First thing to consider is body-type or somatotype as coined by Dr.W.H.Sheldon. The three variables that recur most often are:

a) Ectomorph - a tendency toward linearity or slimness
b) Mesomorph- a tendency toward being muscular
c) Endomorph- a tendency toward soft round body contours

Other individual predispositions to consider are skeletal formation, muscle length and fibre type, fiber density, neurological efficiency, innate adaptability and psychological.

We are basically born with a certain number of fat cells and their distribution is genetically determined. Our body is designed a certain way and will take shape according to plan to a certain degree. To focus on a certain body part or spot reduce is taking a risk in actually overtraining that muscle resulting in atrophy and flabbiness.

The best that we could do for ourselves is to set realistic goals and to work hard overall within the means of what nature presented us with.

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