The trend in the fitness industry of late is extreme fitness programs.

What’s considered extreme, you ask? Any program that is way above the level of conditioning you’re ready for in your current condition. Example: You walk into a training facility to get help. You haven’t worked out since your last high school athletic practice, which was just a shade over two decades ago. They ask for your name and then ask you how many handstand push-ups can you do? How many what??? Where was the screening to see if you were in any way qualified to do this exercise?

This seems to be very popular in group settings, but is also spilling into personal training. I’ve seen a good number of clients who, when probed about injuries and pains, admit they were sustained while trying to doing fitness-related activities that were at a much higher level than their current condition.

This makes me sad. When you finally get motivated to start a lifestyle change, you get hurt? That sucks!

Most of the marketed fitness solutions right now seem to be of the very high intensity type. These are great if you’re conditioned for them. If not, your risk for injury just skyrocketed. Know that the difference between the high intensity workout and a more suitable one may only be 100-200 calories burnt in that time period. So the wiser move would be to find a progressive program that will start at your current level and make the adjustments to your diet.

Make sure you do two things when deciding to sign up for a fitness program:

Also, remember that fitness will improve your health and physical stamina, strength and flexibility. But, if you pay no attention to your diet, you’re unlikely to see the results you’re hoping for. I find that most people want to be leaner, and think that by exercising alone, they’ll become magically toned. Most of the time, with the average US citizen, the diet needs to be corrected, too. I think the take-away message here is, don’t sign up for something that you believe will be really intense so you’ll burn the fat off faster. Use caution when signing up for fitness programs or with personal trainers if there isn’t a thorough screening process. Oh, by the way, we customize the process just for you!