Since starting our 11-Week Bikini Boot Camp Challenge, many of you have had a lot of great questions about how to best use the Challenge to really get in shape and lose weight. Since I did mention in the original challenge post, that completing the Boot Camp Workouts just once per week would not yield significant results, I’ve noticed several comments with questions such as:

  • Do I need to add cardio on top of doing this or is this enough cardio?
  • How frequently should I be doing the Boot Camp Workouts?
  • Should I be doing cardio in addition to each of the week’s workouts?
  • I want to lose X amount of weight, what should my plan be?

And the above graphic is sort of the one-stop shop, all inclusive answer to all of these questions, and also just a basic comprehensive overview of what most individuals need to be doing on a weekly basis to either lose weight or maintain a healthy weight that has already been achieved. If you’re goal is weight loss, you want to be aiming for the upper end of these values.

Some things to note:

  • The Strength Training box of this chart… That’s where the boot camp workouts come into play! My suggestion is for you to set a goal of completing each week’s workout 2-3 times that week.
  • Cardio: High-intensity cardio activity is generally more effective for fat loss. Try interval training or a high-energy dance/Zumba/kick boxing class.
  • On days when you complete a strength training routine, should you also do cardio? It’s not 100% necessary. Some of the routines, like Week 2, are going to be a bit more cardio based than others. But, overall they’re mostly focusing on strength and resistance training. In general, it’s best to do some form of light cardio every day. For example, on days when you strength train, low-intensity cardio like taking you’re dog for a short walk would be a good idea. Reserve high-intensity cardio workouts for days when you’re not strength training.
  • Healthy Eating… What’s considered “healthy eating?” Read this.
  • Flexibility: Having good flexibility is going to make all of your workouts easier by increasing the range of motion around each of your joints. Plus, it prevents injury and helps you to relax. Yoga is my favorite form of flexibility training. Try adding the Mini Yoga & Pilates Challenge to your routine for the remaining duration of the 11-Week Boot Camp Challenge!
  • Most importantly, if you are new to exercising and just starting out, it’s likely that you won’t be able to meet all of these guidelines right off the bat. Start slowly and gradually work your way up to being able to reach all of the recommended exercise amounts every week.

And at the end of the 11 weeks, your next goal should be to maintain a consistent routine that meets most of the above recommendations!

Who’s up for the challenge?!