Target thighs: overall exercise

Q and A

July 15, 2005|By Gailor Large | Gailor Large,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

How can I burn off the fat on my inner and outer thighs? Now that it's swimsuit season, I'm feeling self-conscious. This one change would make a world of difference to me.

The bad news first: There's no way to burn fat in one area of the body. Targeted fat reduction or "spot reduction" isn't possible.

But there is good news. By toning your thigh muscles and cutting overall body fat, you can still get the slimming effect you're after. Combining cardiovascular exercise such as running, strength training and a healthy diet is a surefire way to sculpt your figure into summer form.

I have a home gym, but I've had trouble motivating myself to use it. I'd like to start using an online trainer to re-establish a routine and help structure my workouts. What Web sites are best for this? I'm willing to pay up to $50 a month.

Online trainers, who provide personalized fitness programs via the Internet, are becoming increasingly popular. For the cost - often a monthly payment - you'll get a customized workout and diet plan, along with other information, depending on the program. Here is a sampling of popular online training sites that are known for using reliable, certified trainers:

Myfitnessexpert.com.

Myworkoutpartner.com.

Globalhealthandfitness.com.

Gymamerica.com.

Workoutsforwomen.com.

Someone at my gym talks on her cell phone when she's on the elliptical machine. As far as I know, there's no club rule against it, but it's really annoying and selfish. Should I approach her or the club manager? I feel uncomfortable making a big deal of it, but it's eating away at me.

Cell phone etiquette can be a touchy subject, so if you're uncomfortable addressing the problem directly, leave it in the hands of your gym's manager. He or she is in a better position to say something to the offender without her taking it personally.

"I always tell my clients, don't bring your cell phones on the floor," says Sail Abdullah, a certified personal trainer at Gold's Gym in the Power Plant. While there is no club rule banning cell phone use, he feels that it distracts not only the other gym-goers, but also the user, who is likely not focusing on the workout.

If you have a problem, Abdullah recommends going straight to a manager. Realize, though, there's only so much he or she can do if there is no club rule against it.

Do you have a fitness question? You can submit questions via e-mail to fitness@baltsun.com, or online at baltimoresun.com/healthscience, or in writing to The Baltimore Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, MD 21278.

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