The world-famous fitness expert shares her thoughts on the most effective forms of fitness.
Exercise can be just as polarizing as diet, with one camp claiming steady-state cardio is best for weight loss, while others swear by intense intervals of, say, weight lifting. Thankfully our girl Jillian Michaels is here to clear things up for Crossfitters and power walkers alike.
“The best kind of workout is whatever you show up for, really!” Michaels said. “Whatever gets you out of bed in the morning is ultimately going to be the most effective for whatever your goals are.”
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Michaels herself aims to work out four times each week, and loves fitness that allows for measurable progress. While she admits to being extremely inflexible, Michaels says she is really into yoga right now as it feels rewarding to master each new position and see her progress visually.
As long as she can fit in at least 20-30 minutes of hard work in those four days each week, whether it’s a quick HIIT session in the middle of the afternoon or an early morning date with the gym, she can feel good about her fitness. And we know she’s not sitting at home watching TV the rest of the day—Michaels stays active as a mom, entrepreneur, speaker and activist, so she’s getting all those steps (or more) in. And simply staying active throughout the day burns more calories than you’d think!
Our favorite trainer does have some advice, however. If you’re looking for fast results to lose weight or build muscle tone, Michaels advises regularly switching up your workout in terms of reps, weight, intensity and even the type of exercise you’re doing to reap the full benefits. For example, if you’re a runner, try cross-training twice a week with a spin class or at-home circuit workout, and you’re likely to see some major running gains even though you’re doing it less.
Looking for more advice from Jillian Michaels?
Michaels is a big fan of high-intensity interval training, or HIIT, specifically for quick results. And she loves functional bodyweight moves like push-ups and squats that work several different muscle groups at a time. Plus, she says you should aim to get that heart rate up to 80-85% capacity and high-intensity intervals are sure to get you there!
If you’re struggling to find the right workout for you or are just looking to mix up your weekly regimen, check out Michaels’ health app—My Fitness by Jillian Michaels—for access to dozens of different workouts designed by Michaels herself. Whether you want to increase your flexibility and lower your stress with yoga or sweat it out with kickboxing, this app gives you the perfect workout at your fingertips. You’ll be reaching your goals in no time!
Jillian Michaels says cardio is the least efficient form of exercise — here's why
It's easy to think of running as a quick, easy, and free way to get in shape.
After all, walking is a surprisingly good way to burn fat, so wouldn't running be even more effective?
According to Jillian Michaels, health and fitness expert and creator of the Jillian Michaels app, that's not the case. Michaels told INSIDER that "cardio is actually the least efficient form of exercise."
Michaels says this is because cardio is not metabolic, meaning it doesn't cause the body to continue to burn calories post-workout. Strength training, on the other hand, causes the body to burn calories both during and after a workout.
Strength training elevates your metabolic rate after you're done training
According to Micheals, strength training — which can be anything from resistance training with weights to high intensity interval training — triggers excess post-exercise oxygen consumption, otherwise known as EPOC or oxygen debt.
EPOC refers to the body using oxygen to return itself to its resting, pre-exercise state. Michaels say this process includes bringing nutrients to the muscles, flushing lactic acid out of the muscles, and lowering heart rate. All of these actions raise the body's metabolic rate and result in calories being burned even after the workout is done.
Just how many calories you continue to burn, and for how long after a workout, depends on the duration and intensity of your workout. The more intensely you train, the greater your body's EPOC will be. According to Michaels, studies have found that calories can be burned for anywhere between six hours and 48 hours after training.
What is My Fitness by Jillian Michaels?
My Fitness App is a subscription-based workout app that’s designed to be your one-stop-shop for fitness.
Once you’ve downloaded the app and signed up, inside you’ll find:
- Complete workout programs you can follow from home, outside, or at the gym
- An eating plan built for you with lots of recipe ideas for every meal
- Complete meal logging and calorie tracking
- Progress tracking: Enter weigh-ins and save progress pictures to see how far you’ve come
There are a lot of apps that do one or a few of these things, but few that do it all.
Could you just look up free workouts on YouTube to do in your living room? Sure, you could.
But I’m a big believer that there’s value in following a program from start to finish and having everything you need in one place.
It removes confusion, keeps you accountable, and makes sure you’re making progress from one week to the next.
The app is really designed for:
- Busy people that want to access workouts quickly, either from home or on the go
- Beginners who have no idea where to start and need some guidance
- Anyone who needs the extra structure and motivation to stay on track
3 High-Protein Recipes Jillian Michaels Actually Makes
She may be known as the "tough love" trainer from NBC's reality weight loss competition The Biggest Loser, but Jillian Michaels is more than a fitness guru she also knows a lot about healthy eating. And not only that, she also has a knack for making healthy staples like quinoa and chicken into dishes that her clients actually want to eat.
Luckily, you don't need to train with Michaels to score her meal ideas. Her new app has an entire library of recipes specifically developed with weight loss in mind. These aren't things that will leave you hungry, either satiating nutrients like fiber and protein play a starring role in each one&mdashwhich is good news for your waistline. Fiber-packed foods digest at a slower pace, which helps ward off hunger, while protein stabilizes blood sugar, kicking cravings for high-carb, sugary foods to the curb. (Find out how to stop the craving cycle before it starts and burn fat around the clock with the naturally sweet, salty, and satisfying meals in Eat Clean, Lose Weight & Love Every Bite.)
Here you'll find three of her go-to recipes&mdashall of which have at least 12 g of protein and a solid hit of fiber.
Think going meatless means you'll go hungry? Think again! Black beans, quinoa, and crunchy pepitas add staying power to this light lunchtime dish, and onion, scallions, and spicy jalapeños add some serious flavor&mdashwhile keeping calories to a minimum.
PRO TIP: If you're trying to make this salad last through the work week, split the dish into five servings instead of four, and beef it up by serving it over a bed of spinach or baby kale. Alternatively, you can enjoy the salad as-is with a side of grilled chicken. (Looking for more creative salad ideas? Try some of these 20 low-calorie salads that won't leave you hungry.)
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 carrot, grated or shredded
1 cup jicama, diced
1/2 sm red onion, diced
1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained and rinsed
1 c cherry tomatoes, halved
1 scallion, end removed and sliced into rounds
1 jalapeño, diced (optional)
2 c romaine lettuce, chopped
1/4 c cooked quinoa
1/4 c pepitas, for serving
1/2 c cilantro
1/2 lime, zested
1 lime, juiced
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 clove garlic
1/4 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 Tbsp olive oil
1. COMBINE all salad ingredients except pepitas in large bowl.
2. BLEND all dressing ingredients with 1/2 cup water in blender or food processor.
3. TOSS salad with dressing. Top with pepitas.
NUTRITION (per serving) 372 calories, 16 g protein, 45 g carbs, 17 g fiber, 16 g fat
While it's not often considered a "diet food," when made right, even burritos can be flat-belly friendly. To keep her recipe low-cal, Michaels uses fresh beans instead of the refried variety (which often contains lard or sour cream) and whole grain tortillas instead of traditional ones made with refined white flour.
PRO TIP: If you don't love the taste of whole wheat, reach for corn tortillas instead. They're primarily made up of corn and water, so they're filled with fiber. (Looking for more ways to add more of the filling nutrient to your diet? Don&rsquot miss these 6 tasty ways to get more fiber.)
1 tsp olive oil
1/2 lb skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into small cubes
1/4 c chopped onion
1½ cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp store-bought organic barbecue sauce (we like Organic Annie's Original BBQ Sauce ($3, walmart.com))
7 oz organic low-sodium black beans, rinsed and drained
2 whole grain tortillas (6" diameter)
2 Tbsp lowfat sour cream
1. HEAT oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add chicken, onion, and garlic cook 8 minutes or until chicken is done, stirring constantly.
2. STIR in barbecue sauce and beans. Cook 5 minutes or until thoroughly heated.
3. WARM tortillas according to package directions.
4. SPOON about ½ cup chicken mixture down center of each tortilla top each with 1 Tbsp of the sour cream, and roll up.
NUTRITION (per serving) 392 calories, 36 g protein, 39 g carb, 11 g fiber, 10 g fat
This fancy frittata is overflowing with nutrients. While the eggs bring protein and fat-fighting choline to the pan, tomatoes lend cancer-fighting lycopene as well as a beautiful pop of color. Paired with a side of delicious fiber-rich raspberries, this is one morning meal worth waking up for. (Shake up your morning routine with these four new alternative toothpastes from Prevention Premium.)
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp olive oil
1/4 c diced cherry tomatoes
1 tsp chopped leeks
3 Tbsp crumbled feta
1 c cantaloupe and assorted berries, for serving
1. HEAT oil in small skillet over medium heat.
2. COOK tomatoes and leeks 2 minutes. Reduce heat to low and add eggs. Cover and cook 3 minutes until eggs are firm.
4. TOP with cheese, sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste, and serve alongside fruit.
NUTRITION (per serving) 256 calories 12 g protein, 18 g carb, 6 g fiber, 16 g fat
Foods you can't eat on Jillian Michaels Diet
According to Jillian, losing weight is nothing more than pure math. Her online program provides the answer to this equation and offers direction and support in consuming the right amount of calories each day. Jillian’s program doesn’t focus so much on what you can’t eat. Rather, it focuses on the reasons you shouldn’t eat. Jillian encourages the establishment of healthy eating habits and stresses the need to identify emotional triggers which can cause you to overeat.
Jillian Michaels Shares What She Thinks About Your Excuse to Not Work Out
Known for her tough coach-persona, we get the feeling the celeb trainer is good at keeping herself and other people motivated.
Everyone makes excuses for not working out sometimes. It&aposs real it&aposs life it happens. But if you&aposre particularly creative with your reasons (ex: I might run into my ex who I think moved away, but I haven&apost seen in forever on the way to the gym), you may end up talking yourself out of exercising more often then not.
If you want to stop ditching your workout plans so often, Jillian Michaels&apos advice may help reframe your perspective. Michaels is known for her tough fitness coach-persona, and we get the feeling she&aposs good at keeping herself and other people motivated. So, we asked the trainer to talk us through some of the most common workout excuses. Listen to her reason through your go-to complaint and you might stop using it-or decide to cut yourself some slack. (Related: Lacking Workout Motivation? 12 No-Fail Comebacks for Every Excuse In the Book)
"I'm too tired after work."
First, she gets it. A long day at work can make working out seem like self-punishment. Michaels suggests using convenience to make working out more bearable after a full workday. Whether it&aposs a workout DVD, a fitness app, (Michael&aposs has a workout app herself), or an online streaming platform, the options don&apost end with the gym. "Do it in your living room. Equipment, no equipment, up to you." Commit to just 10 minutes, and once those endorphins are flowing, you might feel like doing more. (According to Michaels, finding your &aposwhy&apos is the key to fitness success.)
"I hate feeling like people are watching me."
Err, sorry, but Michaels isn&apost as sympathetic to this one. "Who gives a f*ck if anybody&aposs watching you at the gym?" In fact, Michaels is one of the people who&aposs watching other people at the gym, "and their form is horrendous." Seems like the answer to this common workout excuse is simply to put your blinders on and stop short of letting what other people think about you (hint: it&aposs probably nothing) get between you and your workout-and those results.
"Fitness classes cost so much money."
True, if you&aposre buying a new class a la carte every day, you could end up spending as much your fitness as on your rent. But that&aposs not an excuse to quit working out altogether since Michaels points out that there are plenty of low-cost options. "There are places you can go and pay ten bucks a month and just use the gym," she says. "Or you can go outside and be active. If you live where there&aposs water, kayak, paddleboard, go for a hike, go for a jog, go for a bike ride." The key is to find the kind of fitness that works for you. (Related: The Total-Body Stairs Workout You Can Do Anywhere)
"I want to try a new class, but I'm scared I'll embarrass myself."
Michaels owns up to this one. It&aposs why she avoids dance classes and the "thigh spreader" (abductor) machine at the gym. Simple solution: Just stick to what you&aposre comfortable with, she says. "I mean I&aposm supposed to tell you not to care what other people think but I answered that already elsewhere and there are certain things I&aposm just unwilling to do in public." Looks like there are exceptions to even Michaels&apos own rules.
"I just don't have the time."
When life gets crazy, chances are your workouts are the first thing to go. But there are lots of reasons they shouldn&apost be. One of them? Working out can help you better manage stress. Michaels recommends carving out time in your schedule every week, no matter how crazy your life is. Shoot for four half-hour sessions a week, she says. That might mean getting creative. "If you don&apost have time to go to the gym, don&apost go to the gym. If you need to be a little sweaty at the office, the world&aposs not going to end." (Try Michaels&apos one-minute workout when you&aposre completely booked.)
"I have my period."
Sometimes an "excuse" is a legit reason to skip a workout, and this is definitely one of them in Michaels&apos opinion. "Girl, stay home," she says. "Take a rest day. You can watch Netflix. It&aposs okay." (Related: I Worked Out In &aposPeriod Shorts&apos and It Wasn&apost a Total Disaster)
Train with Jillian Michaels App Review
I’m obsessed with fitness apps. It amazes me how far we have come in technology. Everything you could need to help you get and stay fit can now be in the palm of your hand. Now the problem we are faced with is a overwhelming choice of fitness apps and how to find the right app for our own fitness needs. This brings me to the Train with Jillian Michaels app available on the google play and the app store. This review will go over everything you need to know about the program and how it works before you shell out the cash for it.
What is the Train with Jillian Michaels app?
Simply put: its a personal training app that helps you workout and eat right so you can get in shape and lose fat. It’s expensive to get a personal trainer and a gym membership doesn’t provide you with much direction. Wouldn’t is be nice if our days where played out for us and we didn’t need to do any planning or guess work?
Thats what this fitness app is for. This app gives you the direction you need to stay focused on your health. We all know that losing weight and getting in shape requires the right diet and the right exercise. You can’t be successful with just one of those.
Jillian Michaels creates a solution that incorporated planned workouts and daily meal plans to help get you in the best shape of your life.
How does the Train with Jillian Michaels app work?
This app offers more than any other fitness app I’ve tried. There are two parts to this app that make it successful: the meal plans and the workouts. While those make up the core of the app, there are also great bonuses and amazing tracking tools. This app is a calorie tracker on steroids. It tracks all your nutritional information and really gives you a better understanding on your diet.
When you get the app you can select your fitness level as well as indicate which workout equipment you have so she can determine which exercises to include in your plan. Next you will set up your profile by answering general questions about your age, weight, and height. With this information you will see a custom workout plans and choose the one that fits your fitness goals the best.
Next you can choose a meal plan. The options are: Omnivore, Paleo, Vegan, Vegetarian, or Pescatarian. This is as far as you can get with the free vision of the app. To continue you will have to make a purchase.
Train with Jillian Michaels App Price
If you are not sure if this app is going to be right for you, the great news is that it comes with a free 7 day trial. This will give you some time to take the fitness app for a test run. If you are ready to start your customized workout and meal plan you have three buying options:
- $9.99 per month (7 Day Free Trial) - Total Yearly Cost: $120.00
- $24.99 per Quarter (7 Day Free Trial) - Total Yearly Cost: $100.00
- $89.99 per Year (7 Day Free Trial) - Best Value, you’re saving 25% per year
Choosing a payment plan will most likely depend on you and your fitness goals. If you have a lot of weight you want to lose you should go with the $89.99 yearly. This will give you enough time to lose weight safely and help you develop the habits you need to keep the weight off.
Otherwise I would go with the $24.99 quarterly option because if you want to get in shape it’s going to take you at least 2-3 months to really noticeable results. You can’t change your body a whole lot in just a month so the $24.99 option would make the most sense.
Whats included in the Train with Jillian Michaels App?
The two main parts of this app is the customized workout plan and the daily meal plan. Here is what you can expect from each:
Jillian give you hundreds of workouts and customized workout circuits that will get you breaking a sweat! I get really bored doing the same exercise over and over again with normal fitness apps, but thats not the case with this one. You’ll get a new workout circuit each day so you’re not stuck doing the same thing over and over again.
Workouts are also very easy to follow. Each one can be viewed on video so you can follow along and adjust your form based on what you see. Another cool feature is that workouts can be previewed before you start.
Not having equipment is no longer a excuse, the videos can be customized so that they require no equipment. If you do have equipment you can specific what you have and the workouts will change to include your equipment.
Workouts can also be customized according to workout level. If you are a beginner you can start with the beginner level workouts. I wanted a challenge and tried the advance level workouts and they were great! I really felt like I was being challenged.
I really enjoy how the workouts are set up in this app. I’ve been traveling lately and it’s been really great knowing that I have get my workouts in and not have to worry about space or equipment.
The Meal Plan
Like I’ve mentioned before, a meal plan is included in this app. Once you select your diet type the app will give you breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack ideas. It goes one step further and even gives you shopping list so you will always have the ingredients you need for the meal. Meal plans are even further customizable in that if you don’t like a recipe you can easily swap it out with something you like.
You can also go through the wide recipe database and explore new meal ideas for fun. The meals in the plan are super easy to make. You won’t be spending hours on prep work or cooking.
Most require minimal and very common and basic ingredients. You will have a recommended calorie intake and the meals they recommend all have calorie values attached so you don’t have to do any crazy calorie counting.
What I like about the fitness app:
- Variety of workout circuits
- Workouts are easy to follow and in video format
- Workouts are customizable based on equipment, fitness level and body goals
- You don’t need workout equipment to do the exercises
- Customizable meal plan
- You can swap out recipesCreates a shopping list for you
- Convenient and digital, like having a personal trainer in your pocket
- Advanced calorie and nutrient tracking
What I don’t like about the app:
- Little pricy - this fitness app is a little pricier than most fitness apps. However, for the quality and amount of content it does make sense to pay a premium price for such a great fitness tool
I think that this app is worth every penny! Looking through the reviews on the app store most people would agree with me. This app currently has a 4.7/5.0 rating based on about 100 reviews. Even though this app is a little pricer than most app it is still much cheaper than getting a personal trainer or gym membership. Give this app a try with the 7 day free trial and see if this is the app that could help you get back in shape!
Best Exercises for People With Chronic Pain, According to Personal Trainers
Living with chronic pain isn’t easy in any part of your life. However, the good news is you don’t have to forgo your fitness routine. In fact, by committing to a regular workout routine, you’re not only improving your health but your body will feel better too.
“Exercise has been called the miracle drug because of the countless benefits to the human body and often recommended as a major component in the management of numerous disorders,” Christopher Harper, PT, DPT, OCS, tells SheKnows. “Exercise improves blood flow to the brain and feeds the growth of new blood vessels and brain cells. Exercise therapy is also the most widely used type of conservative treatment for pain, with systematic reviews advocating exercise therapy as effective in the management of chronic pain.”
More from SheKnows
Harper points out that it’s important for an individual to consult with their medical team before engaging in any exercise. He also recommends participating in a fitness program that is tailored to your own needs and health. The following exercises can be a good starting point as you research and consult with your support system/health team and have been recommended by an array of personal trainers and medical health professionals for those managing chronic pain.
Mix It Up
Jillian Michaels, health and fitness expert and creator of The Jillian Michaels Fitness App
“When dealing with chronic pain I always recommend running any exercise regimen past your doctor. Every condition is different and while fitness can be extremely helpful in reducing chronic pain it can also exacerbate the problems greatly if done incorrectly or if you are engaging in a type of fitness that is simply not conducive to pain management.
In my experience, when I owned a sports medicine facility and worked directly with physical therapists and physiatrists, there are certain modalities that help to increase blood flow, improve mobility, and build strength that aren’t going to increase inflammation in the body.
Things like restorative yoga, tai chi, mat pilates, swimming or water exercises, light cycling, and even walking programs have been shown to help with conditions like fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis, etc. I am not a fan of recommending “a few exercises” because the key is a fitness regimen that is consistent and has a variety of exercises within the modality. You don’t want to do the same exercises repeatedly because it can actually cause repetitive stress, which leads to inflammation. So consider a program for beginners that incorporates the above mentioned modalities with the approval of your doctor.”
Focus on core strength and flexibility
Dr. Josh H Glass, certified Chiropractic Sports Practitioner, 2012 & 2016 USA Olympic Team Sports Medicine Staff
“The two things that anyone with pain can start with is improving core strength and flexibility. Core muscles provide stability and support to the spine and pelvis, and the stronger they are the less likely chronic pain is to occur. Of course, always consult with your sports medicine physician if your pain persists or becomes worse. With any of these stretches and core exercises, stop if the pain increases.”
Some basic core exercises to start with at home, include:
Pelvic Tilt: Lying on your back, head on the floor, contract and push your low back into the ground and tilt our pelvis up. Start with 5 second counts, 5 -10 times. You can increase the hold time as you get used to it.
Bridging: Lying on your back, head on the floor, knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Lift your pelvis off the ground and contract your glute muscles. Same 5 second hold, 5 – 10 times.
Press up: Lying on stomach, hands at side at shoulder level, push up torso, keeping pelvis on the ground, basically a half push up. Five second hold, 5 – 10 times.
“Improving flexibility will also aid in reducing chronic pain, by improving your posture and movement. Stretches should never hurt. You should stop any stretch that does. Stretching should be done multiple times a day. After any exercise and in the evening are ideal times.” Short holds, 3 – 5 seconds long, are safest, says Glass, but longer holds are okay, as long as there is no pain. Do in sets of 5 – 10. Here are a few basic stretches that he recommends:
Hamstrings: Lying on back, use a rope or towel to loop over your foot and pull straightened (knee locked) leg up.
Hip Flexors (Psoas): Kneeling on a soft surface, in a lunge position, lean forward and push pelvis forward, this is stretching your hip flexor of the knee that is down. You should feel the stretch across your belt line. Reaching your hand up in the air on the leg your stretching will help.
Glutes: Lying on back, bring knees to chest and pull with arms. Can be done with legs separately and together.
Strengthen your posterior chain too
K. Aleisha Fetters, MS, CSCS, a certified strength conditioning specialist, online coach, and author of Fitness Hacks for Over 50.
“Regular movement and exercise can be incredibly beneficial in easing symptoms of, and in some cases, treating, many forms of chronic pain. Strengthening the muscles of the core, glutes, and back can help reduce lower back pain. For example, the spinal erectors act as scaffolding for the spine. Fortify that structure and the compressive forces on the spine will decrease,” she tells SheKnows. “Strengthening muscles around any joint, such an arthritic knee similarly takes excess stress off of the joint. It also promotes lubrication of the joints, increases oxygen-rich blood flow to the area, and can improve joint mechanics. Research consistently shows that multiple forms of exercise can slow the progression of diabetic neuropathy and pain.”
Benefits: Strengthens the core muscles and helps alleviate the chronic posterior tilt of the pelvis, which is a large contributor to lower back pain and even hamstring tightness. You can perform it on the floor or even on top of your bed, based on mobility and comfort.
Instructions: Lie face up with your arms and legs extended toward the ceiling, knees straight or bent. Press your lower back into the floor and brace your core. From here, while maintaining this back-to-the-floor position, lower one arm toward the floor above your head and your opposite leg toward the floor. You can straighten your knee as you do so to increase the load on your core. Lead with your heel. Pause when both are as close to parallel with the floor as possible without your lower back losing contact with the floor. Squeeze your core to draw your arm and leg back to start. Repeat on the opposite side. That’s one rep.
Benefits: The core includes your back. This exercise hits all 360 degrees of the torso to strengthen the transverse abdominis as well as erector spinae to address muscle weaknesses and postural issues that may be contributing to back pain.
Instructions: Get on your hands and knees. Your shoulders should be directly over your hands and your hips directly over your hips. Brace your core to tuck your pelvis so that you are in a flat tabletop position. Here, the bottom of your ribs should be pointed to your hips, rather than jutting down toward the floor. From here, squeeze through your back and glutes to raise one arm and your opposite leg, leading with your heel, until they’re parallel to the floor. Keep your torso stationary as you do so. Pause, then slowly lower your arm and leg to return to start. Repeat on the opposite side. That’s one rep. Prioritize maintaining a completely still torso over the height of each arm and leg raise. If this feels easy, you need to double-check your setup!
Benefits: Training the upper back does so many great things for the entire body, improving posture, spinal alignment, and helping to correct issues throughout the kinetic chain.
Instructions: Lie face down with your arms extended in front of you and positioned so that your thumbs point up toward the ceiling. This is the starting position. Pinch your shoulder blades together to raise your arms as high as possible without letting your chest leave the floor, then slowly and with control, return your arms to start.
Perform with your arms positioned in an I (arms straight overhead), a Y (arms diagonally overhead), and T (arms straight out to the sides), all with your thumbs pointing up. All motion should come from between your shoulder blades.”
As is the case with anyone, says Fetters, it’s important for people with chronic pain to listen to their body and choose exercises that are right for their unique needs. “Exercise can feel challenging, and sometimes even uncomfortable as muscle fatigue, but there’s a definite difference between the feeling of a muscle working and pain. Anything that’s experienced as sharp, stabbing, sudden, or occurs in or around a joint, as opposed to in the belly of the muscle, is reason to take pause and reassess both your exercise technique and selection.”
A version of this story was published May 2020.
And be sure to check out the at-home gym accessories we love for an affordable and space conscious home-workout set-up:
Michaels said weight loss is 'not hard to do' with diet and exercise
Michaels said in the video that losing a comparable amount of weight with diet and exercise was "not hard to do," suggesting cutting an average of 300 calories a day (roughly equivalent to a Frappuccino).
This suggestion is based on a common myth in nutrition that cutting 3,500 calories is equivalent to losing a pound of body weight or fat, Hartley said. While a calorie deficit is necessary for weight loss, a variety of factors influence how a person will lose weight, making blanket recommendations unhelpful, she said.Michaels also recommended exercise for creating a calorie deficit. But it takes a lot of exercise to instigate weight loss without making dietary changes. And research suggests that exercising solely for weight loss can sometimes backfire, prompting people to eat back the calories they burned.
Butsch said that while lifestyle changes could lead to weight loss for some people, insisting on diet and exercise could leave people feeling as if they've failed if they can't lose weight with these methods. It can also discourage people from seeking other forms of treatment such as bariatric surgery or medication.
"That doesn't replace trying to live a healthier life, eat healthier foods, exercise regularly, but it recognizes that people are different from one another and don't necessarily respond in a similar fashion to a treatment," he said.
It's not always possible to 'see' someone's health
In the video, Michaels talked about people "choosing" not to change. She said that if diet and exercise aren't working, it's because people aren't doing it enough or correctly.
Hartley said that while changing diet and exercise habits could be a healthy choice for some people, it's not one size fits all. Promoting lifestyle solutions for obesity can sometimes do more harm than good, as weight stigma is linked to eating disorders and yo-yo dieting.
"Jillian Michaels and, unfortunately, the majority of healthcare providers have the assumption that you can visually see someone's health," Hartley said. "There's an assumption that if you're higher weight, you're doing something wrong, and frankly that's not true. Body diversity naturally exists."