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Strength Training for Women

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Spending hours on sit-ups are not the best way to tighten up your abs. Spending a few minutes on some really good exercises, such as Swiss ball crunches and the plank, combined with strength training for your whole body, a sensible diet and some aerobics will help you lose the flab and tighten your abdominals.

MEMBER QUESTION: When I try to do sit-ups, there is an area in my tummy where skin bulges out like a balloon and then sucks inward like a cave. I'm four months postpartum. Is this diastasis?

LINGUVIC: I can't tell you without seeing you. Your doctor will be able to tell if your muscle has separated.

MEMBER QUESTION: Do you address diet in your book?

LINGUVIC: I think most diets are too strict, and if you make something too strict you're bound to go off. I have a full section of what I call sensible, commonsense strategies, where each week you add one more strategy into your lifestyle.

Some commonsense strategies are increasing your water intake, logging your food and something called "closer to the source." What I mean by that is when you're deciding what to eat and what to feed your family, ask yourself "Where did this come from?" We know where an apple came from, we know where an egg came from, but I'm not too sure where cheese doodles come from. You want to try to eat closer to the source. For instance, cheese is better than cheese doodles. There are lots of good commonsense strategies like that in Lean, Long & Strong .

MEMBER QUESTION: I have never been to a personal trainer but I would like to for motivation and targeted advice on my best workout plan. What tips can you give me when trying to find a personal trainer and how long/short of a time could I expect to use one?

LINGUVIC: People go to personal trainers for a number of reasons. You want to be able to learn how to do your workout yourself. So the first thing you want to do is learn the exercises with proper form. I would suggest going a couple of times to learn and understand your program and then following up after a couple of weeks to make sure you've been doing everything correctly.

Sometimes people go to personal trainers just to keep up with their exercise program and to stay motivated. You can do that once a week and then work out on your own the other time, or two times.

When just starting out, I would recommend learning your program in two or three visits and then following up two or three weeks later.

MEMBER QUESTION: Do you anticipate doing any DVDs that show the exercises in your book?

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