Secrets to workout success: Bob Harper on setting a smart pace

A few minutes ago, I caught myself staring at my computer screen. I can't say how long I'd been in that zone, but I know that I wasn't spacing. I was ticking through the items left on today's to-do list, trying to figure out if there is any way I can squeeze in a workout before it is time to close up the laptop for the day.

There's time for a quick one, certainly. But I know if I head out now, my mind will be focused elsewhere and I won't give the attention to my posture, pace, and heart rate that I really need to get the most out of my exercise. I'm not trying to cop out, but I do want to work out in the smartest way possible. If I put off my workout until later tonight -- after the rush pick up the kid and make dinner, and even after the bath-story-bedtime scramble -- then I know I will have a bigger block of time to exercise the right way.

If you've ever seen "The Biggest Loser", you know that trainer Bob Harper does not ever entertain an excuse from one of his clients. They either are committed to working out or they are not, no middle-ground. I like that fierceness about him and the drive it demands of his clients. So would Bob say I am rationalizing away my afternoon workout or making a good decision about how to approach my activity?

Watch this to find out:

Biggest Loser - Bob's Workout Secret #4: Pace Yourself @ Yahoo! Video

OK, so he doesn't exactly say, "Yes, kitten, you can skip the workout as long as you do an exercise DVD in the late hours of the evening! In fact, that's exactly what I would do!" But he does remind me -- and all of us -- that pace should be a primary concern to everyone who exercises.

Although it is tempting to rush through a workout, I think he's saying it's better to strive to be an A-student in how we do each exercise rather than how quickly we make it through it.

One way to assess whether you are following Bob's advice is to invest in a heart rate monitor or time with a personal trainer.Using a heart rate monitor is a great way to ensure you're working out in your target heart rate zone, whether it is for ten minutes or an hour. Also, working out with a certified trainer, even occasionally, is a great opportunity to get professional feedback on your form, how to progress wisely, and what realistic goals are for you.


Do you rush through your workouts? Or are you going along at a happy, healthy pace?

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