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Friday, January 22, 2016

4 Essential Reasons Why Choose A Personal Trainer

Choosing a personal trainer doesn’t mean you have no idea about fitness. It doesn’t even mean that you are not motivated enough to do it on your own. Choosing a personal trainer only means that you are taking your training very seriously and that you want to progress in a healthy way, with good exercises that help you work towards your goal, whatever that might be. Here are a few reasons why you should choose a personal trainer.

You Should Choose A Personal Trainer Because…

1. Correct Form

Performing exercises with the proper form is crucial if you want to stay away from injuries, and your personal trainer could give you tips and tricks on the spot to help you improve yours. Maybe you squat and it feels comfortable until you try to add a bit more weight to the bar. Most of us would think that our muscles are just not ready yet, and although that may sometimes be the case, it’s sometimes caused by improper form. If for example your back is not straight enough, you will feel a weird strain when you try to add weight, and though your muscles might be ready for that weight, your posture is what is holding you back.

2. Extra Nudge

Even if you consider yourself a very motivated person, having a bit of an extra nudge on lazy days never hurt anyone. In fact, a few words of encouragement can go a long way, and if you choose a personal trainer who is just your fit, he or she will know what to say to convince you to keep going when you feel like stopping your workout early.

3. Objective View

Your personal trainer could be the one telling you exactly what you need to change in order to reach your goals. If for instance you are working out and eating healthy, and you are not losing weight as much as you would wish, your personal trainer could sit down with you and analyse your meal plan and suggest improvements, even if that meal plan sounded perfect to you. They could also be telling you when you are training too hard (yes, that happens) and when you need to take a break.

4. Accountability Buddy

A personal trainer is, put very simply, another person who you meet with at the gym, and who shows you what exercises to do. Imagine you meet at 8 am, and you just don’t feel like waking up. You’re not going to hit the snooze button and mis this gym session like you might if your trainer wasn’t waiting. That’s because you feel accountable, and you know that it’s disrespectful to make someone get there, and then bail out. So from this point of view choosing a personal trainer is going to help you get out of bed when you don’t feel like it.
Do you work out with a personal trainer? Tell us how it’s helped you in the comments section below.



CARDIO VS WEIGHTLIFTING: WHAT’S THE BEST WAY TO GET RID OF FAT?

People tend to associate losing weight and burning fat with cardio exercises. Weightlifting training gets forgotten and judged as one of the lesser priority components in dropping body fat. Now I think it's safe to say that minute per minute, cardio burns more calories than weight training if you're working at a respectable level of intensity, however multiple studies have shown that after an effective weight training session, your metabolism can stay boosted from 24 to 36 hours post workout. So which one is best? Well let's delve deeper:

Cardio
There are many health benefits from incorporating a staple cardio plan into your training regime: greater lung function, lower resting heart rate, improved heart health and improved recovery to just name a few. The two divided forms of cardio are Low Intensity Steady State (LISS) and High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). As far as burning more calories during activity, LISS actually has a higher calorie burn compared to HIIT. Although HIIT is normally done for shorter bouts of time, it has been proven to burn more calories post workout which will work better for most effective fat burn, greater use of gym time and also a greater challenge compared to its lower intensity counterpart.
Weight Training
Everyone knows that weight training is essential for building muscle, but you could build muscle and drop body fat simply through effective weight training. The more lean muscle tissue you have, the more calories you burn. Just 1 kg of lean muscle burns 50 extra calories a day whereas 1kg of fat will only burn three calories in a day. So there you go, right from the start, the outcomes of weight training already outweigh cardio whilst at rest. You can incorporate many different training programmes, styles, techniques and methods to achieve an extremely effective calorie burn. Methods such as super sets, drop sets, giant sets and rest pause  for example, help raise the core body temperature and recruit more muscle fibres to work, which will require more calories to be burned for fuel.

Rather than pitch these against each other, can they live in harmony?
I have found in my own experience, that neglecting your cardiovascular system will actually affect your resistance training. A poor cardiovascular system will have consequences when it comes to making gains, causing you to stall.
By incorporating one to two intense cardio sessions into your training regime, you will help your heart and lungs to be more efficient in doing what they need to do in order to progress. Now we all know the feel of that burn sensation when the body is aching and our muscles are shutting down: this is due to the build-up of lactic acid which is a waste by-product of lack of oxygenated blood getting into the muscle cells. It stands to reason that the healthier and more efficient your cardiovascular system is, the more oxygenated blood can be transported through to the muscles, prolonging that build up on lactic acid and allowing you in turn to lift more weight for longer. This will help you in your ability to gain muscle, and as I stated earlier, the more muscle mass you have, the more calories you burn at rest.
As a conclusion, we need to look at how cardio training and resistance training can benefit one another. As an athlete, the stronger and more functional your muscles are, then the greater your abilities will become, which will translate into more creative and advanced cardio training. This will help you build up a stronger heart and lungs which will deliver more oxygen-rich blood through to the muscles. You will then push your body past those plateaus and will continue to make lean muscle gains.
So when you're looking to get rid of that body fat, focus on building a better and more advanced you! Training like an athlete and focusing on a structured training regime with respected cardio and resistance training will lead to one place: a leaner, stronger, healthier you.
Source: fiitnessplus.com

Monday, December 21, 2015

Never Too Old to Start Weight Training

The older I get, the more I realize how important weight training is. It now makes up the majority of my workouts, and if you’re middle-aged or beyond, I encourage you to make this a regular part of your exercise routine.
The fact is, even though you might not care as much about how your muscles look as you did in your 20s (but then again, you might!), you certainly care about how your muscles function.
Without weight training, your muscles will atrophy and lose mass. Age-related loss of muscle mass is known as sarcopenia, and if you don’t do anything to stop it you can expect to lose about 15 percent of your muscle mass between your 30s and your 80s.

Slow Down Muscle Loss and Boost Your Strength Three-Fold
Muscle loss happens gradually, so you probably won’t notice it occurring at first. But by the time you’re in your 70s, when sarcopenia tends to accelerate, you might start to feel weaker and find you can’t do things, physically, that you used to do. According to the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM)
A gradual loss in muscle cross-sectional area is consistently found with advancing age; by age 50, about ten percent of muscle area is gone. After 50 years of age, the rate of loss accelerates significantly.
Muscle strength declines by approximately 15 percent per decade in the sixties and seventies and by about 30 percent thereafter. Although intrinsic muscle function is reduced with advancing age, age-related decrease in muscle mass is responsible for almost all loss of strength in the older adult.'
By helping you maintain your muscle mass and strength, strength training can, quite literally, give you the ability to keep on living. On the contrary, if you stop working your muscles, the consequences of sarcopenia are steep and include..
  • Increased risk of falls and fractures
  • Impaired ability to regulate body temperature
  • Slower metabolism
  • Loss in the ability to perform everyday tasks
Now, what do you have to gain by starting weight training – even if you’re already “older?” As ACSM explains:
Given an adequate training stimulus, older adults can make significant gains in strength. A two- to three-fold increase in strength can be accomplished in three to four months in fibers recruited during training in older adults. With more prolonged resistance training, even a modest increase in muscle size is possible.
…With increasing muscle strength come increased levels of spontaneous activity in both healthy, independent older adults and very old and frail men and women. Strength training, in addition to its possible effects on insulin action, bone density, energy metabolism, and functional status, is also an important way to increase levels of physical activity in the older adult.”

The Many Benefits of Weight Training for Older Adults

Weight training is important throughout your life, but in many ways it becomes even more important as you age. Even if you’re in your 90s, it’s not too late. One study found a group of nursing home residents with an average age of 90 improved their strength between 167 and 180 percent after just eight weeks of weight training.What are some of the other benefits?
  • Improved walking ability: After 12 weeks of weight training, seniors aged 65 and over improved both their leg strength and endurance, and were able to walk nearly 40 percent farther without resting.
  • Improved ability to perform daily tasks: After 16 weeks of “total body” weight training, women aged 60 to 77 years “substantially increased strength” and had improvements in walking velocity and the ability to carry out daily tasks, such as rising from a chair or carrying a box of groceries.
  • Decreased risk of falls: Women between the ages of 75 and 85, all of whom had reduced bone mass or full-blown osteoporosis, were able to lower their fall risk with weight training and agility activities.
  • Relief from joint pain: Weight training strengthens the muscles, tendons and ligaments around your joints, which takes stress off the joint and helps ease pain. It can also help increase your range of motion.
  • Improved blood sugar control: Weight training helps to control blood sugar levels in people with type 2 diabetes. It can also reduce your type 2 diabetes risk; strength training for at least 150 minutes a week lowered diabetes risk by 34 percent compared to being sedentary.
Weight training can also go a long way to prevent brittle bone formation, and can help reverse the damage already done. For example, a walking lunge exercise is a great way to build bone density in your hips, even without any additional weights. Strength training also increases your body’s production of growth factors, which are responsible for cellular growth, proliferation, and differentiation. Some of these growth factors also promote the growth, differentiation, and survival of neurons, which helps explain why working your muscles also benefits your brain and helps prevent dementia.


Is Super-Slow Weight Training Best if You’re Older?

By slowing your movements down, it turns your weight-training session into high-intensity exercise. The super-slow movement allows your muscle, at the microscopic level, to access the maximum number of cross-bridges between the protein filaments that produce movement in the muscle.
This is a beneficial and safe way to incorporate high-intensity exercise into your workouts if you’re older and have trouble getting around. You only need about 12 to 15 minutes of super-slow strength training once a week to achieve the same human growth hormone (HGH) production as you would from 20 minutes of Peak Fitness sprints.
The fact that super-slow weight training gives you an excellent boost in human growth hormone (HGH), otherwise known as the "fitness hormone," is another reason why it’s so beneficial if you’re older. As you reach your 30s and beyond, you enter what's called "somatopause," when your levels of HGH begin to drop off quite dramatically.  This is part of what drives your aging process. According to DRS, there's also a strong correlation between somatopause and age-related sarcopenia. HGH is needed to sustain your fast-twitch muscle fibers, which produce a lot of power. It's also needed to stimulate those muscles.
"What seems to be evident is that a high-intensity exercise stimulus is what triggers the body to make an adaptive response to hold on to muscle," DRS" says. "We have to remember that muscle is a very metabolically expensive tissue… If you become sedentary and send your body a signal that this tissue is not being used, then that tissue is metabolically expensive. The adaptation is to deconstruct that tissue…
People of all ages can benefit from super-slow weight training, but this is definitely a method to consider if you’re middle-aged or older. I recommend using four or five basic compound movements for your super-slow (high intensity) exercise set. Compound movements are movements that require the coordination of several muscle groups—for example, squats, chest presses and compound rows. Here is my version of the technique. I'm also going to demonstrate a number of exercises in my YouTube channel .
  • Begin by lifting the weight as slowly and gradually as you can.  Like doing this with a four-second positive and a four-second negative, meaning it takes four seconds, or a slow count to four, to bring the weight up, and another four seconds to lower it. (When pushing, stop about 10 to 15 degrees before your limb is fully straightened; smoothly reverse direction)
  • Slowly lower the weight back down to the slow count of four
  • Repeat until exhaustion, which should be around four to eight reps. Once you reach exhaustion, don't try to heave or jerk the weight to get one last repetition in. Instead, just keep trying to produce the movement, even if it's not “going” anywhere, for another five seconds or so. If you're using the appropriate amount of weight or resistance, you'll be able to perform eight to 10 reps
  • Immediately switch to the next exercise for the next target muscle group, and repeat the first three steps
If you’re just starting out, consult with a personal fitness trainer who can instruct you about proper form and technique. He or she can also help you develop a plan based on your unique fitness goals and one that is safe for any medical conditions you may have. Just keep in mind that while you need to use caution, you do need to exercise at a level that is challenging to your body. Many make the mistake of exercising with not enough intensity, and this will result in many of your benefits being forfeited.
It’s important before you start to adjust your mindset as well. You can use the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) to let go of any negative beliefs you may have about exercise or your body’s ability to grow stronger at an older age. Once you’re open, mentally, to becoming fit and strong, your body will follow suit. Do start slowly and gradually increase your intensity while listening to your body. And be sure to give your body ample time for recovery, as well as the proper nourishment to help build your muscles. Amino acids are extremely important as they form the building blocks for muscle. Leucine is a powerful muscle builder.
However, you should avoid amino acid isolates of leucine because, in its free form, it’s been shown to contribute to insulin resistance and may lead to muscle wasting. It’s far better to get leucine from whole foods, and the best source is a high-quality whey protein. Consuming a high-quality whey protein shake after your workout may help to maximize muscle protein synthesis. Finally, in addition to strength training, you should round out your exercise program with other beneficial exercises, including DRS Fitness, balance training, core work and flexibility training. Add this on to regular daily movement – aim for 7,000 to 10,000 steps a day – and you’ll soon see your fitness level soar.
Source : fiitnessplus.com

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Interesting Fitness Facts About Human Body

Here are some of the interesting fitness facts about human body and health that you probably never knew. Knowing these should give you yet another reason to love your body and take care of your health.

15 Interesting Fitness Facts

1. It takes 70 muscles to speak a single word.
2. Your body has more than 650 muscles.
3. What is your body’s strongest muscle? It’s your heart – which beats approximately 100,000 times per day. That means that in just 10 days, your heart beats one million times. If you do sustained, intense exercise daily, you’ll reach a million even more quickly.
4. People who cross-train with a variety of exercise are more fit and less injury-prone than those who exercise using only one or two exercise modalities.
5. Visualization can help to improve your workout. By visualizing yourself completing the exercise before you actually perform it, then you will be able to perform the exercise with more intensity and effectiveness.
6. If you had every single muscle in your body work together at the same time, you could lift about 50,000 pounds.
7. If you are not a regular exerciser, by the time you are 65 you may experience as much as an 80% decrease in your muscle strength.
8. By the time you have reached old age, you will have walked approximately 70,000 miles.
9. Walking either in water, against the wind, or wearing a backpack burns approximately 50 more calories an hour. 
10. Watching yourself in a mirror while running on a treadmill, will make your workout go faster. 
11. Only 13% of men are physically fit.
12. After the age of 30, women lose minimum 0.5% muscle mass every year.
13. Every time you go for a one hour walk your life expectancy increases by 2 hours.
14. Only about 22 percent of INDIAN adults engage in regular, sustained physical activity for at least 30 minutes five times a week, and only 15 percent exercise both regularly and vigorously.
15. Standing up straight burns more calories than slouching – just one more reason for good posture. Stand up straight. Good posture burns more calories than slouching
By utilizing these interesting fitness facts, you can pump up your workout, get to know your body and make your way to the best shape of your life.
Source : fiitnessplus.com

Circuit Training Improves Flexibility, Strength And Endurance

Circuit training is a form of training which alternates between different physical activities and rest periods. Each segment is completed within a time limit. The four types of circuit training are timed, competition, repetition, and sport-specific. From beginners to experienced athletes, many individuals use the circuit method because of the low investment in resources. A workout session can be completed within thirty minutes. It can be done with no equipment or with inexpensive equipment like stability balls or dumbbells.
The benefits of circuit training include improved flexibility, coordination, strength, and endurance. Weight loss is another benefit. In addition, it provides participants with both resistance training and a cardiovascular workout. In a WebMD article, a fitness research director stated that circuit trainers receive an extra third of calorie burn after their sessions.

Main Types Of Circuit Training

There are four main types of circuit training — timed, competition, repetition, and sport-specific. In timed circuit training, individuals perform each exercise in conjunction with a rest period within a time limit.
Competition circuit training involves repeating one physical activity as many times as possible, increasing the reps within the same amount of time.
Participants in repetition circuit training are a group with varying fitness levels. Each member of the group performs the workout at the intensity relative to his ability.
Sport-specific circuit training consists of exercise elements focused on a particular sport like running/boxing/swimming.

Some Circuit Training Exercises

Circuit training can include any number and combination of physical activities. These are a few circuit training exercises for getting into shape.
– Walking Lunges;
– Jumping Jacks;
– Push ups;
– Squats;
– Abdominal Crunches;
– Jump Rope;
– Calf Raises;
– Running;
– Jogging;
– Weightlifting.
Source: fiitnessplus.com