Aaron Savvy, ACSM Certified Trainer
I know they say breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but I have a hard time getting myself to eat. I just don’t have an appetite and the thought of food makes me nauseated. Any ideas? —Jon, West Hollywood
I know you are not alone on this one. Many people experience having zero appetite first thing in the morning. Everything you do, your body takes note, and together, both you and your body establish a pattern. On average, most people get five to six hours of sleep each night. So when you miss breakfast, another four hours can easily pass you by before you get your first meal in for the day. That means you have gone nine or 10 hours with nothing to digest, forcing your metabolism to slow down, preserving vital nutrients that your body needs to survive. We also call this a “fasting mode,” which means when you do finally eat, your body is still in storage mode holding on to every calorie. I would introduce your body with something simple: juice or even a banana. What you’re trying to do is tell the body that it’s okay to eat. When you do this religiously, your metabolism will kick in, bringing back the hunger.
I am 46 years old and working out is becoming more and more difficult. My joints just plain hurt. What can I do or take? —Frank, Long Beach
If no major injury has taken place, there are a few actions you can take. I would take a glucosamine with an MSM that will aid in lubrication for both joint and bone. Repetitive motions or overusage of joints can create tendonitis. Sometimes just easing back on the workouts and allowing the extra rest can reduce the inflammation. I would also lay off the heavy weights and hit the lighter weights. This will ease up the stress you are putting on your joints. You are also in more control of each rep, making it a little easier to work around the pain. You can also buy support straps that will ease the tension on your joints. I would advise not to get too dependant on support straps. Though it detours pain away from the target area, it puts stress elsewhere, potentially causing another issue.
I am 28 years old and I don’t know what my heart rate should be when I am doing cardio. —Alex, Hollywood
What you want to do is take 220 minus your age. This will give you your maximum heart rate of 192. I suggest being in the 75-85 percent of your maximum heart rate. This will put you in your burning zone—allowing you to burn the most amount of calories in the shortest amount of time. If your goal is to lose weight, I suggest 30-45 minutes of cardio. If you are all about the endurance, not thinning out and still want to build, I would shoot for only 20-30 minutes.
Email Aaron your questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.