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Tested: Visual Impact Cardio

visual impact cardio ebook cover

Today I’m taking a look through Rusty Moore’s new ebook, Visual Impact Cardio. Now instead of muscle building, he brings us his thoughts and research on cardio – a type of training more directly related to endurance athletes.

It does feel kind of odd for me to review this, because it’s about training for fat loss. It’s not a sport-specific training program like you or me would normally follow. The aim of this program is fitness, not training, but this line piqued my interest – it’s about “the skill of losing body fat.”

Normally we don’t refer to fat loss as a skill, but this book presents fat loss as a skill you can learn, much like drafting, proper pedal stroke, log hopping, etc. It’s an interesting concept and the #1 reason I purchased the book.

It will also be interesting to see if I can incorporate some of these principles into my cycling training for quicker and easier fat loss when I inevitably pack on a few pounds over the holidays!

For anyone else with impending fat loss goals, keep reading…

What do you get with Visual Impact Cardio?

The main book is a 99-page manual that you download in PDF format. You also get a printable workout journal (also PDF) where you can record and track your workouts.

The first 11 chapters in the book are dedicated to explaining fat loss and cardio training, and the next four are the actual training plans for you to follow. There is a Beginner Cycle, an Intermediate Cycle, an Advanced Cycle, and the Maintenance Plan.

I’ll go into greater detail in this next section…

What’s all in the book?

The book covers quite a bit! It took me much longer to read through than I expected (because of all the good info, not because it was hard to understand.)

See, Rusty wants you to “become a master chef instead of just a recipe follower.” He doesn’t just give you a quick plan and tell you to follow it because he’s awesome and you should take his word for it. No. On the contrary, he wants you to understand the why and how behind the plan. He doesn’t hold back on the good stuff, and that’s something I admire about him.

I think these are the three main topics covered throughout the book:

1. Dieting and Burning Calories

The first three chapters are all about burning calories, with a big focus on what burns calories and when you burn the most calories. Burning calories is a critical part of any diet or fat loss plan, so pay attention to this stuff.

For example, think you burn a lot of calories post-workout if you work hard enough during the workout? Think again, because on page 8, Rusty says calories burned after exercise don’t amount to much! He goes on to explain why this is (and why the earlier research studies on this topic were likely flawed.)

In chapters two and three, Rusty gives you the scoop on calories burned during different types of workouts, with a direct comparison between steady state and interval training. The concepts are valid from a fat loss standpoint, but let me remind you – as an endurance athlete you should consider race performance first and fat loss second.

Later in the book, Rusty looks at a few more interesting approaches to eating, and he devotes one chapter to burning stubborn body fat (i.e. that big butt or belly you can’t seem to get rid of no matter what you try!)

2. Interval Training

The next couple chapters explain how interval training works. You probably have a firm grasp of interval training if you’ve ever participated in some sort of sport-specific training, but if not, this is vital information. Pages 29 and 32 are especially important.

The problem is, certain strategies are not practical from a sports standpoint. They could even do more harm than good. So if you attempt to use these methods to achieve your athletic goals, don’t say I didn’t warn you!

3. Putting It All Together

This is where the book really shines – Rusty gives you a ton of practical advice on setting up the perfect diet plan, explains how to combine it with your workouts, and to top things off, gives you step-by-step workout plans to follow.

I think this will be the most valuable advice because it will probably change the way you think about dieting. Rusty’s techniques strike a balance between being strict enough to get results and lenient enough that you can still live a normal life while following them.

Though I may disagree with some of Rusty’s points in the earlier chapters, I agree with this stuff, and this is the part of the book that really matters as far as seeing results.

visual impact cardio excerpt

Are the workout plans any good?

For a cyclist, not exactly. But for a general fitness enthusiast looking to lose fat, they’re right on target.

The plans have you training at intensity levels based on your Lactate Threshold (LT,) so they’re the real deal. This is miles better than training around your estimated Maximum Heart Rate (MHR.)

The beginner plan is simple enough even if you have no idea what LT and VO2 Max stand for, the intermediate plan is going to be tough but doable (and should provide great results,) and the advanced plan looks extra painful, even to me! So no matter your current fitness, one of the plans should suit you.

I also want to point out that the plans are written for someone who will be using a treadmill or elliptical machine for their workouts. If you’re planning on running or biking outdoors for your cardio, it will be a little more difficult to control the workout. So this is a rare case where I’d recommend going with the indoor workout machines.

My final verdict is…

Like Rusty Moore’s muscle building programs, this one is NOT aimed at cyclists looking to get faster and race better. Don’t expect this cardio training to replace a true training plan for your sport.

That said, there is some overlap between this book and some popular cycling training methods. If you’re new to cycling and have a lot of weight to lose, this program and the suggested diet plan could be a good way to start your journey to fitness.

Official website: www.VisualImpactCardio.com

Product Review Details
Company: Fitness Black Book / Rusty Moore.
Product: Visual Impact Cardio
Reviewed by: Coach Levi
My Rating: 3.8 out of 5
Date last updated: 2012-11-17
Obtained Product: Purchased at retailer.
CoachLevi.com Advertiser: Yes; paid affiliate.

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coach levi
Hi, I'm Coach Levi. I'm a USA Cycling Certified Level 3 Coach as well as Level 1 Certified with Precision Nutrition. Want to feel better, ride faster, and look great? Let's work together!

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Coach Levi is my favorite child and favorite cycling coach. I'd choose him over Christoper McCarmikael even. Did I mention that Levi can coach you to a healthier lifestyle where you look and feel your best?
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