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Exclusive ACE Survey: Top Three Exercises to Get and Stay in Shape for Summer

SAN DIEGO, July 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Americans are looking for clear and concise answers when it comes to how to drop a few pounds this summer and many are turning to their personal trainers to show them the way. The American Council on Exercise (ACE) recently conducted a survey of 1000 ACE-Certified Personal Trainers to get their advice regarding the best techniques to get fit for summer. They recommended strength training, interval training and increased cardio as their top three exercise approaches for a summer, total-body makeover when combined with a sensible, portion controlled, healthy diet.

1. Strength Training -- Nothing too intimidating, but just 20 minutes of

basic exercises two days a week will help firm and tone the whole

body. Strength training will modestly increase metabolism, helping to

burn more calories -- even at rest. Start any strength-training

program with one set of exercises and a weight that allows the

completion of eight to 12 repetitions. Any program should exercise the

major muscle groups of the lower body, torso, and upper body. Special

attention should also be given to strengthening the core muscles and

lower back to help enhance individuals' functional capabilities for

safely engaging in various summer recreational activities.

2. Interval Training -- Lack of time is the number one reason people give

for not exercising regularly and lack of results once they do start

exercising isn't far behind. Interval training is a great solution for

both of these common problems. Interval training involves alternating

short bursts of intense activity with what is called active recovery,

which is typically a less-intense form of the original activity. "In

its most basic form, interval training might involve walking for two

minutes, running for two, and alternating this pattern throughout the

duration of a workout, it is an extremely time-efficient and

productive way to exercise," said Cedric Bryant, PhD., FACSM, chief

science officer for ACE.

3. Increased Cardio/Aerobic Exercise -- Aerobic exercise is any activity

that uses large muscle groups in a continuous, rhythmic fashion for

sustained periods of time. Walking is a weight-bearing aerobic

exercise. So are jogging, rope skipping and dance-exercise. There are

also non-weight-bearing aerobic exercises, such as bicycling,

stationary cycling, swimming and rowing. "Consistency is key to a

successful program, said Bryant. "You should exercise at a comfortable

pace and gradually increase the intensity of your workouts. To lose

weight, gradually work towards accumulating 60 minutes or more of

low -- to moderate -- intensity physical activity on most days of the


About ACE

The American Council on Exercise (ACE), your premier certification, education and training organization, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting the benefits of physical activity and protecting consumers against unsafe and ineffective fitness products and instruction. ACE sponsors university-based exercise science research and is one of the world's largest nonprofit fitness certifying organizations. For more information on ACE and its programs, call (800) 825-3636 or log onto the ACE Web site at

SOURCE American Council on Exercise
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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