Episode 14: Beginnings – starting somewhere requires you to start

Listen and subscribe to LILA on iTunes or Stitcher (Search for 3D LILA).

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3D LILA Update [1:06]

Happy 2016! I hope you survived the holidays. Although LILA didn’t gain any weight, neither did she lose any. Yet, that’s ok considering all of the parties she went to. It’s a new year and LILA feels like she is beginning again—starting the next phase of her journey to fitness and weight loss.

One of the things that has held her accountable is the making of her mini-3D LILAs. However, she missed her deadline back in December to be reprinted. After wrestling with her feelings about this, she decided to forgive herself and let it go. This is a journey for her, not a race.

Interview with Dr. Joanna Fassl Penn [7:30]

LILA brings her friend back for another fun, informative interview. We first met Dr. Joanna Fassl Penn in Episode 6. She was instrumental in helping LILA get fit and active years ago. In this week’s interview, LILA and Joanna discuss how to start a fitness routine and the benefits of aerobic exercise.

How do you start an exercise program? [10:34]

If you are new to exercise or have been inactive for some time, the key is to start slow. Joanna says the best way to begin an exercise program is to start with mild aerobic activity, the easiest being walking. She advises that you try to do this 4 times a week, 20 minutes a day.

How do you calculate target heart rate levels? [11:56]

Joanna says that it’s important to keep track of your heart rate while you exercise. Instead of using the old “220 formula” for calculating heart rate, use the “180 formula.” Subtract your age from 180, and then subtract another 10. So, a 40-year old woman should exercise in the 130-140 range.  By staying in this zone, you ensure that you are exercising aerobically.

[SIDE NOTE: We weren’t able to find a fancy calculator online to help you calculate your target heart rate using the Maffetone Method. If you have found one, please share in the comments or on Facebook.]

High intensity interval training (anaerobic) vs. lower heart rate (aerobic) exercise? [14:18]

Exercise scientists believe that the benefits of aerobic exercise far exceed those of anaerobic. Studies have shown that people doing aerobic exercise are less prone to injury and have a better endurance for both both physical and mental activities. Also, aerobic exercise burns fat, whereas anaerobic exercise burns sugar.

What are some good aerobic exercises for beginners? [19:34]

Walking and biking are good as long as your heart rate stays in the aerobic range. In wintertime, staying inside and using a recumbent bike, swimming, or walking on a treadmill would be excellent choices. Joanna doesn’t recommend step machines, rowing machines, etc. for beginners. You might get your heart rate too high and therefore exercise at an anaerobic level.

What’s the Maffetone Method? [21:40]

Dr. Philip Maffetone is a health expert who created the 180 Formula for exercise.  He advises that people build to an aerobic base for 3-6 months where they do nothing else other than aerobic activity.  Again, your heart rate should stay in the fat burning zone.

How do you find an exercise program that works for you? [22:56]

Joanna says that we need to tailor a program to our personality.  Think about activities you love and do them.

Shoes and spot training? [27:17]

Don’t buy those expensive athletic shoes anymore! Research is showing that people using sneakers with lots of padding and support are twice as likely to sustain injuries.

Joanna is quite passionate in letting us (or reminding us) that spot training will NOT burn fat in a specific area. Aerobic training and diet burn fat from all over your body. Spot training is only effective at building muscle in a specific area.

Be Brave [34:17]

LILA is excited to announce that she is beginning a new challenge in 2016: the 1,000 Mile Challenge. She will run a total of 1,000 miles over the course of the year. Consider joining her or come up with your own challenge for yourself. Whatever it is, have fun with it!

Do you have a topic you want LILA to talk about? Or are you willing to be on her show? Please let her know on Facebook or Twitter. She’d love to hear from you.

Significant Quotes:

Joanna Fassl Penn:

“People would see me from the outside and think WOW this girl is in perfect shape when in reality my cardiovascular potential was low.” [10:05]

“Inactivity is almost as bad as smoking or hypertension for coronary heart disease.“ [13:49]

“If you crave sugar after a workout, it is probably because you were exercising too anaerobically.” [16:04]

“We are neuroplastic beings and our brains can change and evolve, getting over addictions [like sugar].” [19:22]

“If you are talking about a beginner, anaerobic activity is going to do more harm [than aerobic] and cause more stress.” [21:28]


“I am a technologist at heart.” [6:23]

“I have described you as the fittest woman I know—you were a Cirque de Soleil performer!” [9:17]

“I found a very weird love for step aerobics.” [24:55]

“I listen to TED talks while I am doing my yoga routines. I have yoga ADD and it distracts me from the repetition.” [26:45]

Links Mentioned

Touchpoints:  http://www.touchpointssf.com/

Touchpoints on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/touchpointsjoannafassl

The 180 Formula: http://philmaffetone.com/180-formula/

1000 Mile Challenge:  http://www.1000milechallenge.com/#!/

The Maffetone Method book by Dr. Philip Maffetone – Click on book cover to purchase.

Disclaimer: Please consult your physician before beginning this or any exercise program.


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