Archive | October, 2015

Why Swimming Is a Good Cardiovascular Exercise

Swimming could be done as a cardio vascular exercise to increase cardiovascular fitness, the value of which shall be explained later. First you need to know what cardiovascular fitness is and why we need to do cardiovascular exercises in order to improve our cardiovascular health to the maximum.

  • Cardiovascular fitness

Cardiovascular fitness is the ability of your body to efficiently transport and use oxygen, these means having healthy organs that function properly for example your heart and lungs. If you are fit and healthy your heart functions properly and pumps blood and oxygen as is needed by your body but if you are not as fit as you should be then your heart is not efficient in doing its functions and health problems to build up. One of the best ways to improve cardiovascular fitness and efficiency is to exercise regularly. There are many cardiovascular exercises but for this article we are only going to focus on the benefits of swimming for maintaining or improving cardiovascular fitness.

  • How swimming improves cardiovascular fitness

Swimming can be an excellent form of cardio provided we swim with the intention of getting a proper workout during our time in the pool, if you are swimming for cardiovascular fitness you are not relaxing in the pool, you are hitting those laps hard and going as fast as possible in order to raise your heart rate. If you get used to swimming regularly, you could end up being able to do many laps in the pool which would be more beneficial. You see with swimming you will get out of breath and there is a lot of holding your breath and controlling your breathing rate going on, this trains your lungs and over time your lung capacity increases. That means your lunges can now take in more oxygen which will then be transferred into your bloodstream. Your heart will improve and be able to pump more oxygen and blood per heart beat.

Choosing to swim as your cardiovascular exercise will help you increase your muscular and cardiovascular endurance, this improvement in your fitness levels will in turn make daily activities easier to do because you will have more energy and you will feel like a million bucks. Plus there is an advantage to swimming instead of doing other cardio exercises is that because your body is fully supported by the water there is less negative impact on your body because you do not have to support your body weight and the extra force that is present when you do other cardiovascular exercises such as jogging.

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Diets, Exercise, Health, and Weight Loss

Square one. Stop thinking about diet, diets, dieting, on a diet, fad diet, latest diet, celebrity diet, diet pills, diet plans, diet programs… ad nauseum… literally!

A diet is simply what you eat! Your diet can consist of chocolate donuts or alfalfa sprouts, but most “Diets”, with a capital “D” will not set you free. Instead, they lock you in a cage. Eat anything other than what they prescribe, and you are a failure… at least, so reads their literature.

Of course, what we eat and when we eat it can play a big part in weight loss or weight gain. Even where we eat can be a factor. Ever eat too much at Grandma’s on Thanksgiving? I have. How about that cocktail party when you went wandering over to the snack trays, and drank one more drink because someone offered it to you? Okay, for me it would be sitting at the bar ordering one more beer (light, of course) because the game’s not over yet. Oh yeah, pass the chips.

FORGET THE WORD “DIET”

Let’s just eat healthy and live healthy, OK, Sister Mary Fides, healthily. I know. It’s an adverb.

HERE’S THE LOWDOWN ON WEIGHT LOSS.

If you take in more calories than you use, you gain weight. If you burn more calories than you take in, you lose weight. Proven scientific fact. No ifs, ands, or buts. Although we are all different and our bodies shuffle quantities of calories and file them a little bit differently from our neighbors’ bodies, we can all contribute to weight loss by taking in fewer calories or by burning more calories… or both.

You’ve already figured out that using both techniques simultaneously will be more effective than trying to accomplish successful weight loss with only one.

I’m going to assume that the reason you want to lose weight is to improve your quality of life. You are concerned about your health. Being over fat can contribute to major and minor health problems. Yes, you honestly believe it would be great to lose weight, but you don’t want to be miserable, and neither do the people around you.

By the way, I said over fat, rather than overweight, because healthy people can weigh more than what the charts and tables say they should weigh. Weight per se is not the problem. It’s the fat that cripples and kills people, so I was just making a point. According to the charts, when he was in the best physical condition of his life, Arnold Schwarzenegger was “overweight”, but I doubt he was “overfat”.

WELL, YOU CAN CUT CALORIES BY DIETING. RIGHT?

First, if not at the beginning, then somewhere in the diet, you will begin to feel deprived, depressed, and desirous of dessert. (Neat trick with the d’s, eh?) You might even feel like you’re being punished. Can’t eat the things you like. Can only eat asparagus, or bean sprouts, or three from this column and two from that column; except on the third Tuesday when the moon is full. Is it any wonder you and any other living human might quit a diet simply because of this nonsense?

THE REAL REASON DIETS DON’T WORK.

As if discomfort and stress were not enough, there are actually a couple of hidden reasons why diets don’t work. I’m not even going to go into the effects of stress and cortisol on your weight. That’s a book by itself, and is too large a topic to go into here.

IN FACT, DIETING CAN MAKE YOU GAIN WEIGHT.

Most diets are structured on one principle, cut calories taken in. Most of us burn calories at a given rate based on our age, physical makeup, activity, and heredity. The rate at which we burn calories is called the “metabolic rate”. Our metabolic rate is unique to each of us, and is simply the measure of how fast we burn, or metabolize, calories. As we grow older, the metabolic rate slows down and eating the same number of calories as last year will cause us to gain weight. As we age, we also tend to become less active, and our body gradually changes its metabolic rate based on our activity levels as well.

When you begin to cut calories drastically, as in most diets, your body responds by lowering your metabolic rate. Even though you’ve cut your calorie intake, it now takes fewer calories to maintain your weight. While eating less, you might even find yourself gaining weight.

What usually happens when someone gets on board with an extreme diet? Well, eventually, they usually fall off the wagon and go back to their old eating habits, perhaps even bingeing a little, or a lot! If their body has learned to get by on fewer calories, what’s going to happen to the calories that are now excess? They will be stored as more fat.

If calories are cut too drastically, the body may actually begin eating itself, and it only wants the best! It’s going to go after muscle tissue. The problem with this is that muscle burns calories more effectively than other body components. When you lose muscle tissue, or muscle mass, you burn fewer calories. You are also probably not going to feel as well or as energetic, so you will become less active. So again, simply cutting down on calories might create a double whammy working against you.

By the way, one of the sources of muscle tissue that the body might begin to break down is called the heart! There’s no way that can be good for you.

Okay, you’ve slowed down your metabolism and lost muscle mass. Now you’re disillusioned and depressed because you’re not losing like you thought you would. You have less energy and you’re hungry all the time. You’re fed up with eating the same old stuff, you’re miserable, your family doesn’t understand, there’s nobody to talk to! Oh! One little dish of ice cream won’t hurt, will it?

YOU KNOW THE ANSWER TO THAT ONE!

Next thing you know, you’re in the gutter surrounded by burgers and fries and chocolate milk shakes. Lo! How the mighty have fallen.

Nope, you’re just human. But now you’re depressed (which can contribute to weight gain) because you failed again. On top of everything else, you’re gaining again. How did that happen?

Remember what we said earlier about your metabolism slowing down and the body depleting it’s supply of muscle tissue? Well, with less muscle tissue you burn fewer calories, and, as you saw earlier, the body has slowed down its metabolic rate and doesn’t need as many calories to survive. Go back! It’s a trap!

IT’S A VICIOUS CYCLE, ISN’T IT? WHAT CAN YOU DO?

I suppose you could hire a dietician to help you plan meals. You can take pre-prepared menus shopping to help you buy the specific ingredients needed for healthy, nourishing meals. You could take some college courses and learn how to do all this yourself.

There’s where the diet problem lies. To control calorie intake properly, somebody has to be in charge of the nutritional side of a planned weight loss program. You can take the responsibility on yourself, but be prepared to spend a lot of time planning, preparing, and compensating.

There are organizations and companies who can provide the guidance, planning, and/or products to help. You might want to look at: NutriSystem, Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, or TOPS International.

These can provide you with a broad range of delicious planned meal choices which can help you stay on target.

EXERCISE AND WEIGHT LOSS:

Remember that part about metabolism and muscle mass?

When you engage in physical activity; gardening, walking, weight lifting, swimming, biking or dance aerobics, for example, you burn more calories during the activity than during times at rest or most other less strenuous activities.

This is good, but it gets better. If the activity is strenuous enough, your metabolic rate can remain elevated for some time after the activity has ended. Uh Oh! I said “strenuous”, didn’t I? Look, what is strenuous enough for you is what YOU can handle, not what some Olympic miler can do. Do what you can, and your body will figure it out. In fact, your body is going to get all upset and team up with your mind and convince you that this is JUST TOO HARD if you try to do too much at first. That’s one of the reasons many well intentioned exercise programs don’t last. The other main reason is that people expect too much in too short a time. It took years to get out of shape, you aren’t going to reverse that in a week, a month or more.

The degree to which the metabolism is raised, and the length of time it remains raised, will depend on various factors, of course, but one key factor is obviously the intensity and duration of the activity. However, the bottom line is that if you want to lose or control your weight, some sort of activity is important.

SO, HERE’S THE SOLUTION:

Combine increased activity (okay, exercise) with a controlled calorie intake, and you have the basic ingredients for healthy weight loss. Forget the pills, fad diets, and, except in the most extreme cases, surgical procedures. Now, exercise is a broad field, and so is nutrition, and there is no way I can go into all the possible variations on those themes here.

The programs mentioned above, NutriSystem, Jenny Craig, Weight Watchers, and TOPS Club, Inc. provide guidance on nutrition and exercise. Additionally, they provide one other highly important ingredient for success… SUPPORT!

Some have meetings, some have online support, but the key is that you can communicate with others who know what you are going through.

No one weight loss program is necessarily right for everyone. Take a look at these programs and decide which will work for you, or work out your own weight loss program. Remember also, we are all human, so please forgive yourself if you slip and fall. It’s the getting up and moving forward again that’s important.

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Fat Burning Cardio Workouts – Free, Fast and Easy

Fat burning cardio workouts are pretty easy, as long as you have the motivation to stick with them. Pretty soon you’ll be slimmer and trimmer if you combine them with a healthy eating plan. To top it off they are also free.

Do some sort of aerobic activity every day for thirty minutes. Your heart will pumps faster, but not so fast as to strain it. When it is enough to work up a sweat you’re doing aerobic exercise. This can include the stationary bike, swimming, jogging and even walking. There are loads of other activities also. Mow your own lawn instead of using a service. Again all these don’t cost you a dime. Include intervals into the aerobic work outs. These are bursts of higher activity that help boost the metabolism even more. For example if you are walking, try to run for a minute.

It is definitely incorrect to think exercise only has to be three to five days a week. Don’t believe it. You should exercise each and every day. For an activity that will be repeated every day, make sure it’s something not too hard. This way you won’t be tempted to skip it. The best way to burn stored fat is to exercise before breakfast or at the very least before your next meal. Throw in an extra ten to thirty minute walk after lunch or dinner to this exercise routine, in addition to the thirty minutes. Keep in mind that life is full of other opportunities to be mobile, whether it be parking further from the store for a little walk or raking the leaves instead of making the kids do it.

You should Do simple and easy weight exercises three times a week. The increased muscle mass means a faster metabolism. A faster metabolism means you burn more calories, and therefore more fat, even when you’re simply performing routine, day to day activities. An added benefit is You’ll also feel better and look better just because of the toned muscle.

Never skip a meal. Doing so places your body into starvation mode where it burns calories more slowly. A slow metabolism is not a friend of fat burning. Remember too that eating too little will also drop the body into starvation mode. Most people need to consume at least 1200 calories daily.

Results are pretty special when fat burning cardio workouts combine with healthy eating. It doesn’t have to be hard and it’s also free. In fact if it’s too difficult you’ll lose motivation and quit the program. Studies show that most people keep at it less than one month with a new workout routine. Don’t be one of these start and quit health enthusiasts.

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The Most Important Body Part For Muscle Building

If I were to ask you right now “What’s the most important body part to train and maintain strong for building muscle mass what would be your answer? If you ask 100 different weight lifters you’ll probably get 75-100 different answers. Well, I’m here to tell you in this article which one it is and why.

I guarantee you that most will say that if you were to pick one body part, and just one, that has the biggest impact in how much weight you gain and muscle you build it would be “legs”. I assure you that would be the number one answer. With all of the magazine and sites saying that “if you want to build bigger arms, train legs. If you want to build muscle overall on the body, ya gotta squat!”. Hmm, I can see the reasoning behind that.

Those that don’t answer “legs” will more than likely say that the most important body part to train would be you back, with heavy deadlifts and bent over rows. They’d probably claim that the strength, power, and thickness you get from training back intensely is going to result in you gaining quality weight all around, especially if you’re a naturally skinny individual.

And so on and so forth. I could go on and on. But I’m here to tell you that no, it isn’t your legs. No, it isn’t your back. Nor your chest, shoulders, arms, or anything else for that matter. The most important body part to train if you are looking to build muscle mass naturally and gain weight fast is…..your brain!

“C’mon! What are you talking about!”, you may be thinking. Well, “think” (pardon the pun) about this: how many times has the way you “feel” caused you to think you’re too tired or not motivated enough to go to the gym and workout? How many times you “not feeling it today” resulted in you not giving it your all in the weight room? How many times has you “not thinking you’ve got enough time or are too busy this week” caused you to skip out on weeks of muscle building, weight gain-stimulating bodybuilding work outs?

Do you see were I’m going with this?

Lately, in the last handful of years there’s been a spike in popularity in “self help” books, programs, DVDs, CDs, website, etc., all preaching how you must have the right frame of mind to achieve success and reach your goals, whatever they may be. (Usually these are geared towards money making and the like, but the principles apply to just about anything, including doing what it takes for building muscle mass ).

The brain, or better said, the mind is always going to be the bottom line in how well, how consistently, and how intensely you bodybuild to obtain the physique you so desire. So, sure, hitting legs hard is very important. Training back, from top to bottom, is also crucial. But the biggest piece of the bodybuilding / fitness puzzle is and will always be your state of mind!

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Excellent Diet Plans

When looking for a decent diet, people often do have the wrong impression that they will have to starve themselves in order to lose weight. But that is totally wrong as in order to lose weight you must make sure that you eat the right food and the right amount of food at the right time.

Doing this you will not starve yourself at any point. Just remember to discipline yourself when following a diet program. So if you struggling to choose from a few good diets then you must first check to see what you think will work for you.

How to make it work?

Remember that by sticking to a diet you will be improving your health and that there will be no side effects. Remember that:

  • You must take it in a positive sense and by doing this you will be making it easier to follow through with the plan.
  • You are not starving yourself as you can eat as much food as you want that is mentioned in the plan.
  • Concentrate on the end result more than the dieting.
  • Try something new. When you are following a diet then you will be trying something new so try to let this be exciting for you.
  • There are many good diet programs so find one that you will like.

Follow these few tips in order to help you through you dieting.

There are many good diets to choose from but as I mentioned earlier you must choose one that will suit you the best so here are a few diet programs that you can look up:

  • Grapefruit diet, Hollywood grapefruit diet plan and grapefruit diet.
  • Vegetable juice diet and juice fasting.
  • Yogurt diet, green tea diet plan and vegetarian diet plan.
  • Raw food diet program and green smoothie diet plan.

The above plans are just a few diet plans that I have suggested from over hundreds of diet plans. And the reason I have suggested them is that some of my friends have personally tried a few and I know they work.

So when you are deciding on a diet program remember to give a few diet plans a look and then check reviews on them that will help you make your decision. So go ahead and look up a few of the above mentioned diet plans so that you can see how it has worked for others.

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How to Have Six Pack Abs

Are you looking to get the perfect six pack? You want to look more attractive and be in good shape. Six pack abs are a great thing to have and you will feel proud of yourself. Getting yourself in shape is good for your health.

Here is where you start to get your six pack. You must lose some weight to get rid of the fat on your stomach area. You must do this because otherwise your fat will be covering up your six pack and you won’t be able to see it. Losing that fat is easier then you think. You must combine weight lifting with a cardiovascular exercise. The reason you have to combine them is because without doing any weight lifting you will lose the muscle. If the only thing you do is weight lift then you won’t burn the fat fast enough making it an extremely long time to obtain six pack abs.

You must build up muscle with exercises. The thing you want to remember, you don’t want to just do ab exercises because each exercise targets the whole body in a different way. You don’t want to lose out on the effect that one exercise might have. Do basic exercises like push ups and sits ups. It can be as simple as that.

Make sure you drink a lot of water. It is recommended that we have 8 cups of water each day which is approximately 2 liters. Water will keep you hydrated when you are working out plus it will help burn the fat. The human body is made up of 75 percent water.

Self motivation is the key to getting six pack abs. By keeping yourself motivated and doing your exercises in your exercise routine, you will be able to have sexy abs.

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Superior Cardio – The Best Cardio Workout Ever in the Comfort of Your Home!

Now when you hear the word “cardio” don’t always assume that it is aerobic cardio. The fact is that you can burn a ton more calories, body fat, and achieve superior cardiovascular fitness by engaging in anaerobic activity. This is where the overhead kettlebell swing comes into play!

By now you may be familiar with the ancient kettlebell. The kettlebell is an ancient strength and conditioning device that has been used by the world’s greatest athletes and strongmen for over three centuries. This device is perfect for you to use to execute an array of cardio exercises right at home. Even though kettlebell training is an extraordinarily versatile form of training I am only going to discuss a single exercise for the sake of this article. The overhead kettlebell swing is a high intensity cardio and muscular endurance exercise that is sure to give you superior cardiovascular fitness and will incinerate your body fat.

The double arm overhead kettlebell swing is performed by you grabbing the bell with both arms and swinging it from between your legs all the way up to above your head. In order to execute this lift you must be very familiar with the proper technique that is involved in the movement. To begin, in order to swing the kettlebell you must learn how to perform a certain movement known as the hip snap. This is done by you constantly and fluently flexing and extending at both your hips and knees to create the necessary momentum to swing the kettlebell. Once you initiate this movement you will want to allow the bell to build up enough velocity in order to take it all the way up to above your head. You need to make sure that you are in total control of the weight and that you have plenty of ceiling clearance when you perform it.

This cardio body fat blasting workout will change your life! This is a cardio exercise that I guarantee will burn fat right off of your body and get you into the best shape of your life. Remember that anyone can train hard, but only the best train smart!

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The Best Muscle Building Diet – The Essential Foods For Huge Muscle Growth Revealed!

When you are trying to build muscle there are many things you need to be aware of beyond what they may be telling you in all those muscle magazines. First and foremost, you will never get the same sustainable muscle nutrition from any supplement as you will get from the foods rich in them. Food has a complex blueprint of nutrients and synergistic components that actually include a delivery system. When you eat muscle building foods the body can integrate the components in certain foods very efficiently and effectively. These components assist in the body’s ability to repair muscle tissue and to facilitate the healing process (including the pain you feel after a good workout).

When you take supplements you may get the nutrients but without the delivery system you may not actually be putting all of them into your body and thus your being short changed in what your body will actually be able to use! With muscle building foods you heal faster and are able to get back into the swing of your workout much faster as well. This means building more muscle faster. You are also not going to put your stomach through the torture of trying to dissolve the pills or other things that come in them to hold them together prior to taking them.

Many of the supplement pills have preservatives in them which is bad for your body. Why in the world would you take a supplement and risk not getting enough nutrients to repair your muscle tissue, when you could easily find muscle building foods (and even cheaper than the powders and supplements to boot!), just as easily and know that you will get ALL of those nutrients?

The bottom line is that muscle building foods are good for you, and work with your body to heal the damage/scaring that creates big muscles. Healing and scaring of the muscle is what makes it bigger and stronger, so if the body is void of the building blocks it needs this process may not be as efficient and thus you could actually cause injury. You can make some delicious muscle building foods as well that will contain other things the body needs so realistically you would be benefiting in many ways you couldn’t from a supplement.

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Lose Belly Fat – 2 Secrets To Fat Loss

Are you having trouble losing belly fat? You probably often say to yourself that you have tried every fat loss method out there to get rid of belly fat. That fat still seems to stay there… doesn’t it?

You also probably end up coming across a lot commercials and TV ads that make all sorts of claims that you can get rid of stomach fat in just a few days with their special pills, and other supplements. Oh and I won’t forget to mention those gadgets that you strap to you your stomach, and all the sudden your tummy turns into this all star abdominal physique, I will also not forget to mention the ab rollers.

Hopefully after you are done reading this article you will see that these magical things that these companies have come out with are a complete insult. You cannot lose weight and have a toned body overnight, nor in a few days. That’s just the truth. There is no magic pill.

The only pill that I know of that has made people lose weight is amphetamines. Do you really want to be putting amphetamines in your body? Ugh I don’t think so. When people do consume these they eventually stop taking them, and then go back to their old habits and become even fatter.

So lets navigate away from all these scam products, and get to scientifically proven ways of getting rid of stubborn belly fat for life.

1.) The first thing we are going to talk about is how you manage your workouts. To get rid of stubborn belly fat, you need to stop wasting your time and effort doing exercises that are focused on the stomach. Crunches, sit-ups, leg lifts etc… are all a waste of time.

You do not lose stomach fat by doing workouts or exercises that target your stomach area. That is the truth. Most people know this, and they still end up focusing on their stomach area.

Now… I am not saying to fore go all of these things. In fact these abdominal workouts can strengthen the core of your stomach. However they should only be a small part of your workout routines. You need to spend more of your time focusing on workouts that work the larger muscle groups of the body, such as the legs, back, and chest.

Are you really interested in getting rid of your tummy fat? Well you need to start doing what I am about to tell you NOW. Get yourself a barbell and start doing squats, dead lifts, step-ups, and some chest and back exercises. Also when doing this, keep the rest periods to a minimum. This means no more five minute resting periods between sets.

Getting rid of your stubborn stomach fat requires you to focus your intensity on your exercises. The people that tell you that you can just sit down and watch the television, while wearing some ab belt, or popping some pill are straight up lying to you.

2.) The second thing we are going to talk about is how that belly flab you have revolves around your nutrition. Diets only work against you, if you keep following all these trendy low carb diets, you are losing certain nutrients that you are going to need, such as proteins, carbs, and fat.

You know what is healthy for you. Humans were meant to eat a variety of all types of foods. As long as you are not filling yourself with junk food all the time, you are still able to get rid of your belly fat by using what we talked about before.

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Hardgainer Workout Routine

Most hardgainers learn the hard way that they need a workout routine designed specifically for them to achieve success in the weight room. Hardgainers have different bodies than most of the people at the gym who bulk up easily. Their muscles recover slower than these people’s do so they need a workout routine that accounts for this.

Most workout routines people use would not work for a hardgainer. These routines force them to work out too often and when their muscles are tired and overstrained. This only weakens the muscles and can lead to injury and illness.

Hardgainers need a workout routine that allows for more rest. Their muscles simply can’t take the workload of any other training program. A great routine consists of workouts that last less than an hour. Any session longer than an hour will overstrain the muscles and force an extended recovery time. One-hour workouts are prefect for triggering muscle growth. These workouts should be either 3 or 4 times a week. It’s best to take a day off in between workouts.

The other key to building muscle is practicing good eating and sleeping habits. Hardgainers especially need to eat healthy meals and eat lots of them. During the day, hardgainers should mix in small, healthy meals to compliment the bigger meals of breakfast, lunch and dinner. A protein shake after a workout and before bed is great for muscle growth.

Sleeping is another important ingredient in muscle growth. This is when the muscles grow the most so that is why it’s important for hardgainers to get 7 to 8 hours of sleep every night.

When you take the time to evaluate every aspect of the weight gaining process, even a hardgainer can add weight and build muscle like everyone else.

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