I get this question a lot and there are plenty of advertised gimmicks on the web and TV claiming to have the quick and easy way for you to lose the fat. For example, have you seen this new device called theShake Weight? (What a piece of work this one is. The fact that this thing got manufactured, produced and stocked in a sporting goods store is amazing.) The claim is, if you shake this specially designed 2.5 pound weight up and down for 6 minutes a day, in no time you’ll have “firm and fabulous arms.” Really? Shaking a weight up and down for 6 minutes a day? Fat will melt off my arms? Plus it’s only 2.5 pounds? (Saturday Night Live did a spoof commercial on the Shake Weight and you can imagine where they went with it!) If only it really were that simple we’d all have Michelle Obama arms by now. But I’m here to tell you that it’s not. I know, total bummer. But think about it, do you really think that’s what the First Lady did to get in shape? I don’t think so either.
The real and long-lasting way you go about getting rid of the flab is the same way you go about ‘toning’ any other area of your body. First you have to work the muscles in that area a few times a week through strength training. Then you have to eat nutritionally sound foods like fruits, veggies, whole grains, lean meats and fish. Plus, you need to eat those foods in controlled amounts every few hours. Then, you have to do heart-pumping cardio every few days to get your heart rate up so you can burn more calories than you consume, which will help you to lose fat. This is the only tried and true way you’re going to rid yourself of the dreaded flabby flesh.
There are no quick fixes, magic potions, or shaking of weights for that matter, that will do it for you. You need to do push-ups, tricep dips, tricep extensions, bicep curls, lateral raises and all sorts of other arm exercises. It may be more time-consuming than 6 minutes but if you’re serious about results, then you need to be serious about how you go about getting them. And once you get rid of the flab and you can see your muscles, nothing can compare to that feeling you’ll get the first time you put on a sleeveless dress.
So while shaking a weight may be more fun, it’s not going to rid you of the flabby arm fat. And definitely not in only 6 minutes a day. There are, I’m sure, other benefits of the shake weight though, but we won’t go there!Anne Marie Costanzo is a nationally certified personal trainer and owner of Little Black Dress Personal Training. She can be reached at (914) 841-1121.