Archive | October, 2015

P90X MASS – Building Muscle With P90X

Let’s face it, anyone that has participated in the P90X exercise program knows that it was designed to help you build lean muscle and shed unwanted pounds and fat. Some of the P90X before and after pictures you see on the internet are simply amazing, they just confirm that this program is no joke and one can easily achieve their fitness goals by following it.

P90X is so effective in getting you ripped that it’s very difficult to build muscle mass when following the program to a tee. It’s great for those that want to drastically tone up but how about those that are happy with their body fat percentage and want to gain muscle? Below are just some of the key components that are absolutely required when your goal is to build muscle mass via P90X.

Train with Heavier Weight: One of the most important factors when trying to gain muscle is to lower your rep count while increasing your weight. You should be doing 6-8 reps and make sure you are using a weight that you will absolutely fail on the last rep. If you can only do 4 reps, take a few second break and try to do another 2-3. 12-15 reps should be done when your goal is to tone up and build lean muscle.

Nutrition: Eat more calories! You must increase your calorie intake if your goal is to build muscle. Most people feel like they can eat whatever they want but this could not be further from the truth. Yes, you will need to eat more but reach your calorie goal by eating high-quality foods. For muscle growth, carbohydrates are not as essential as protein and fats. Your body will not be able to build bigger muscles without an ample amount of protein. You should at least shoot for 1 gram of protein per pound of body-weight. If you weigh 200 pounds, you should consume at least 200 grams of protein a day. Don’t get me wrong, carbohydrates are also very important as they fuel your muscles and provide your body with the energy needed to complete a P90X workout at a high intensity level.

Eliminate a Cardio Workout: Too much cardio slows down muscle growth and P90X has plenty of it. Think about it, even the P90X resistance training routines are somewhat cardio-type workouts. You are constantly moving and completing each exercise one right after another with little or no break.

Recovery Drink: I highly recommend some sort of recovery drink no matter what fitness program you are participating in but I feel that it’s all out mandatory when you are trying to build muscle mass. A post-workout recovery drink with carbohydrates and protein stops the breakdown process that occurs after a workout and stimulates muscle repair and growth. It’s very important to supply your muscles with the nutrients needed after an intense workout, especially when the focus in on building muscle.

Following these tips will help you build muscle mass with P90X. Remember to fight for those extra reps, most people give up too early so break through that mental barrier and muscle up 2-3 more. Also, do not underestimate the nutrition piece as it plays a critical role in building muscle. Drink plenty of water (body weight (lbs) x.06 = water intake in ounces) and if at all possible, try to eat 6 meals a day spread out every 2-4 hours.

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Cardio and Fat Loss – Should You Still Use Long Cardio Workouts to Burn Fat?

When you go to the gym and look around a little, then you will notice that those people who want to lose fat are on some type of cardio machine, and those people who want to build muscle are lifting weights. The majority of people, who want to get rid of fat, always use cardio exercises to achieve their goal. But is it really necessary to spend hours and hours every week doing boring cardio workouts? Or is there a better way to lose fat?

Using long cardio workouts to burn fat?

The number of people who actually are able to lose a lot of fat and keep it off, are very small indeed. People very often get some “advice” from a fat loss “guru” and then put it into practice without even thinking about it. Even when they do not get the results that they want, they still do the same thing over and over again. But if something does not work like you want to, then take time off and find out what is the problem. Most of the time the problem is that people are using the wrong exercises to burn fat.

Although cardio workouts to burn fat are important, but you also have to do them right, or else you will do more harm than good for yourself. The danger of doing very long cardio workouts, is that you lose muscle mass along with fat. The less muscle you have, the slower your basal metabolic rate (BMR) is, and the less calories you burn.

Another reason why cardio workouts are not that effective as people think, is because your body as it gets into better shape, gets more efficient at burning calories. So it takes a lot less calories or energy to do the exercise. So you have to constantly make your workouts longer to burn the same amount of calories, as you did before, and this means muscle loss. Long and boring cardio workouts also have no effect on your BMR, but building muscle with weight training does. Weight training really is even more important, when it comes to fat loss, than long cardio workouts actually.

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Muscle Building Nutrition Made Simple

While there is no question that nutrition is an important part of your bodybuilding success or failure, there is a question as to just how important it is.

Some people say it is eighty percent responsible for your bodybuilding success.

Honestly, I have no idea what the percentage of importance is, but I will say this, if you are going to spend time working your butt off in the gym, why not work just as hard on your nutrition.

What follows is what I feel is the best things you can do nutrition wise to further your bodybuilding gains.

POST WORKOUT NUTRITION

Anyone who knows me knows that I harp on this a lot, but that is only because I feel it is vital to making gains in the gym.

You must eat some form of protein and carbs after your workouts if you want to maximize your gains.

The period after your workout is when most, if not all, of the food you take in will be used for muscle growth and repair-and not fat stores-so missing this chance just does not make sense.

Having said that, do not be fooled by the magazine advertisements for post-workout products.

While they are nice, plenty of muscle has been built with a nice big bowl of chicken and rice after workouts.

Yes, it is not fancy, but it works.

Up next…

SMALL FREQUENT MEALS

One thing you do not want to do when trying to gain muscle is to miss meals.

Eating every two-to-three hours is best.

By eating I am not referring to a twelve course sit down dinner, no, I am referring to small meals that focus on protein first, healthy carbs, and good fats.

For example, a high quality protein shake like Muscle Provider, which is put out by Beverly International Nutrition, and a serving of mixed nuts works well.

As do a couple of hard boiled eggs and a piece of fruit.

These meals do not have to be major, so please do not think that way.

Lastly…

NIGHTTIME NUTRITION

I know to some people eating before bed might seem like overkill in the quest to build massive muscles, but if it helps me along even a little bit, I will do it.

Having some cottage cheese an hour before bed works well here, provided it does not keep you up at night.

If it does, just skip this step, because eight hours of solid sleep trumps the cottage cheese in my opinion.

CONCLUSION

While eating every two or three hours might seem like a chore, it is a vital part of your bodybuilding success.

By planning a head and always carrying a quality source of nutrition with you, like your favorite protein in a shaker cup and maybe a couple of pieces of fruit, you will always be prepared to grab a quick meal.

NEVER STOP

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The Best Weight Lifting Exercise To Lose Fat Fast

Only a small amount of people are aware that lifting weight is one of the best exercises to lose body fat and even a smaller amount of people are aware how to do it right. Weight training increases your lean body mass and this speeds up your metabolic rate. Your basal metabolic rate increases with other words you burn more calories at rest. This is the beauty of weight lifting for fat loss you burn the most calories after the workout. In this I don’t give you a list of weight lifting exercises. You get a much better deal I show you how to lift weights in such a matter that you see maximal results.

First of all let me tell you that lifting weight is not the answer to lose fat properly, you think it is cardio, you are also wrong. What you need is a combination of these two. Lifting weight and doing cardio together with a solid nutrition plan are the answers for maximum fat loss without muscle loss. This is by far the best method to lose fat permanent and save. Most people don’t do this because it takes time and self discipline to achieve the results.The duration of the best weight lifting exercise is about forty-five minutes.

Don’t try to train with weight longer than one hour if you train to long you will ee the opposite result. If you train to long you will increase your level of cortisol and that is catabolic hormone that breaks down muscle.As said before even the best weight lifting workout won’t get result without cardio. The question is should I lift weight first or should I start with a cardiovascular exercise. If your time schedule allows it split your routines into separate sessions. Split testing your routines minimizes the risk of overtraining Perhaps it is not possible to split your routines then do your cardio immediately after your weight training.

Muscles are not growing during the workout but after the workout. You should give your muscles enough time to recover so it is not recommended training more then two days in a row without giving yourself a day rest. If you are a beginner start to train with three days a week but never train more then five days a week even if you are more advanced.Most people don’t know how much repetitions they must do and giving a correct answer is nearly impossible. A repetition between 6 and 12 is ideal however how much exactly depends on your goal. Is your primary goal fat loss or muscle loss? Which muscles do I want to train. But one thing is sure high reps don’t mean that you burn more fat. Resting between sets is also an important factor and again it plays a role if your main goal is to burn fat or to increase muscle mass.

I’m sure you have some ideas know how to select the best weight lifting exercise for fat loss. No matter if your goal is fat loss; gaining muscles or both you still need a good nutrition plan.

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Golf Workout Tips With Specific Strengthening and Flexibility Exercise for Golf Fitness

Make no mistake about it, golf is a sport and it demands a certain amount of athleticism. With that said, there are certain aspects of playing golf that can be improved through directed exercising. Most of these exercises are designed to improve overall performance while others are designed to help prevent injuries.

The Golf Swing

While walking and climbing on a golf course with a bag of clubs strung over the back provides a decent workout unto itself, it’s the golf swing that tests the limits of what the human body can do. Many a golf expert will be quick to point out that the golf swing is kinetically opposed to how the human body normally functions. In order to create a good golf swing, a golfer has to retrain their body to go against its convention.

Golf Workout Tips

Exercises that will most benefit a golfer are focused on strength and flexibility. The strength exercises will focus on the arms, legs and back while exercises intended to improve flexibility will be directed at the joint areas, namely the knees, hips and shoulders.

Strength Exercising Tips for Golfers

1. The Legs – The power in a golf swing comes from the rotation in the hips and leg strength. Leg exercises like leg presses and jogging will improve the endurance of the legs and help the golfer to maintain stability and drive the ball better. Also, exercises that focus on the hamstring will strengthen that muscle and help prevent injuries that might occur while climbing up and down hills or into sand traps. Remember, you aren’t looking to build mass, you just want to tone the muscles.

2. The Arms and Wrists – The best exercise for the arms and wrists would be curls done with dumbbells. In order to avoid building mass, you might want to use lighter weights with more repetitions. Any type of isometric arm exercise would also be helpful.

3. The Back – The golf swing puts a lot of torque on the lower back. The best exercises for the lower back and stomach muscles would be waist bends and sit ups. By varying the speed of these exercises, you can help tone the lower back muscles without building mass. This also improves flexibility and helps to prevent injury.

Flexibility Exercising Tips for Golfers

1. The Knees – During your golf swing, your knees will need to move side to side. Any type of pivoting exercise will help to tone the muscle around the knees, helping to keep them stable.

2. The Hips – The most important part of your body during the swing is your hips. The rotation of the hips will dictate how you come to the ball on the downswing, which dictates whether or not you can control your direction. Any isometric exercise that tones the trunk of your body should help give you the “core” strength you need to deliver a consistent swing.

3. Shoulders – The range of motion limitations of your shoulders will be tested with a golf swing. Exercises that emphasize moving the arms in a circular motion will help to keep your shoulders flexible and stable during your swing.

The Warm-up

Between walking and swinging golf clubs 200-250 times per round (practice swings included), every part of your body will be used and tested during the day. As is the case with any other physical sport, it is important that you stretch key parts of your body before picking up a golf club. You can devise a good warm-up routine by practicing the same routine prior to any workouts you use to improve your overall golfing performance. A good warm-up is the key to preventing injuries that are certain to ruin your day of golf.

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6 Essential Muscle Building Tips

Muscle building can be great fun and pleasure. Muscle building for many people is a life style or sometimes even the profession. Muscle building is also a skill that should be applied with precautions to get the best results and not to harm you.

Here are some muscle building tips for you.

Create your training program in such way, so it includes all muscle groups. The body you are willing to create should be proportional and symmetrical. You don’t want to get wide shoulders and tiny, little legs.

Your exercises should be different for every muscle, as every exercise trains only one part of the muscle. Use all the techniques you know to appropriately develop every muscle of your body.

If your goal is to build your muscles, that you absolutely have to modify your diet. You must eat one gram of protein per pound of the bodyweight every day, no matter whether you train or not.

If you can not achieve the needed amount of the proteins by means of the regular food, you can find out the information about the protein supplements that are freely available in most of the shops and on the internet.

Your training should be constant and regular. The weight increase should be slow but constant. You can also increase the number of times you lift the weight instead of increasing the weight.

Muscles should have an appropriate rest after the training, as they need time to relax, renew, and grow. Do not overtrain.

Use these basic muscle building tips and you will get a great result.

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Exercising at Home – Barbell Complexes For Cardio

For the last three years, I’ve mostly been working out at home. For a while, I continued going to a commercial gym as well but, eventually, I made the commitment to stop paying for a gym membership that I didn’t need and started working out exclusively at home.

To start with, I found the lack of equipment and machines difficult to do without. After a few months, though, it got easier. And before the first year was out I was enjoying exercising at home far more than I ever did in a commercial gym.

I soon found that there were in fact lots of different options for exercising at home, even if you’re concentrating on cardio, or aerobic training. Most people think that they have to invest in the same piece of equipment that they’ve always used in the gym but that’s not the case. I used to be chained to the Concept 2 rowing machine but I soon learned that there were other options to give me the cardio buzz that I needed.

Barbell complexes

One of the best ways to do cardio is to use barbells to create complexes. Some strength coaches refer to this as weighted cardio, or strength cardio.

Barbell complexes only really work if you are already comfortable using barbells as part of a resistance training programme. If you start grabbing a barbell and tearing through complexes before you’ve mastered the basic lifts, you’re going to suffer horribly because your form will deteriorate. First, get mastery over the basic lifts and only then think about complexes.

Here are a couple of key pointers, if you decide to use complexes as your cardio option:

  • Make sure that your complexes programme fits in with your resistance training goals. Don’t start ripping it up with complexes if your resistance training programme already has tonnes of volume in it or they will make you unhappy.
  • A good example complex might have 5 to 8 exercises of 5 to 8 repetitions each but everyone has their own sweet spot.
  • Choose exercises that you’re familiar with. I learned the hard way that complexes aren’t the time or the place to learn the good morning!
  • Put the harder exercises first. This makes it easier to use the same weight all the way through. E.g. you would want to place a deadlift or squat variation earlier than a press or a row.
  • Don’t put exercises that require lots of co-ordination too late in the complex. E.g. even if you can Olympic lift safely I wouldn’t include snatch or snatch variations too late in the complex as your form may get sloppy owing to fatigue. Doing them as a first exercise is great, however, if you are comfortable doing them safely.
  • Choose big, compound movements. You’re looking for whole-body recruitment here to burn calories and get the heart pumping. We’re not isolating muscles.
  • Emphasis the posterior chain. Think deadlifts, cleans and squats. This will make you a better athlete, a more upright human being and a stronger person. Birds will sing around you as you walk and flowers will grow at your feet. (OK, I made the last bit up).
  • Plan the transitions in your complex. You don’t want to be finishing a deadlift and transitioning to a squat, because this means you would first have to do a clean and jerk to get the weight over your head before you can then drop it onto your upper back. Deadlifts and rows transition well into cleans (or high pulls). Cleans (and high pulls) transition well into push presses or front squats. Presses transition well into back squats or good mornings.

My favourite complex is: Romanian deadlift, high pull, front squat, push press and good morning. This comprises purely compound movements, puts the harder movements earlier and transitions nicely all the way through.

Lots of options

I hope this short article has gone a little way towards showing you how barbell circuits can be used to do cardio or aerobic training at home.

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Metropolitan Police Retirement: Fitness, Nutrition And Health

Introduction

They say that police officers when they reach the end of their service and retire, only last about five years before they die. How do you feel about that now that you are retired or are coming up for retirement? I know I would feel a little concerned if I was in that position.

I retired from the Metropolitan Police In December 2006, so I suppose I should be concerned at least until the fifth anniversary of my retirement from the police which will be in December 2011. I personally take my fitness, health and nutrition quite seriously. I have let the fitness go a bit, but I do a lot of walking instead of running or playing soccer. also I pay attention to what I eat and drink, so that I can just feel much better.

But this article is about you and the actions you take when you retire or are within the last year before retirement. Are you still working long hours? If you are then you should be slowing down a little, so that you can ease into the slower pace that will inevitably come i the not too distant future. Now I did not say that you should go from working twelve hours a day to doing very little and I am not suggesting for one minute that when you retire you become inactive, nothing could be further from the truth.

But you will want to take some time out and smell the roses, because i know from experience that most active police officers have their minds on their work and in many cases, do not take care of some of the good things that life has to offer.

So what do you need to take care of during your retirement in relation to your fitness, health and nutrition? Here are a few suggestions to think about.

Your General Health.

Ensure that you read the signs of your body, because it normally tells you if something is wrong or pending. Do not be afraid to go to the Doctor’s surgery if you need to. Do not put anything off, rather be safe than sorry.

Perhaps it could be a great time to consider giving up smoking. Hear me now I am not preaching, it is just a suggestion and to be fair I have never smoked at all.

Your Exercise Regime.

Take stock of what you have been doing up until now and decide if what you have been doing is conducive to your new life. Whatever you do, obviously it is always best to have some plan in place, if you have not been the best at looking after your fitness. It will be your total choice of course, so choose wisely.

A lot of people I know just continue to play golf quite regularly and that is great, but consider some other type of exercise that gets the heart pounding a bit. Now don’t go too mad here, but maybe a bit of power walking or swimming.

It is important to remain active for the rest of your life and for as long as you can. Remember the old maxim, ‘If you don’t use it you lose it.’

Your Sleep Patterns.

Now this is an interesting subject and I think the key here is to look at your current sleep habits and see if you can improve them at all. Everybody is unique here and will find their own balance. But I know as a police officer I usually did not have enough sleep between shifts, mainly because you try to live as normal of a life as possible.

As a serving police officer I used to survive on five to six hours a night. Is that enough? Probably not, so consider increasing your hours slightly. I now have managed to increase my hours to six or seven a night and I really have noticed the difference.

It is also important for you not to waste your time spending too much time in bed. Now I know there are exceptions to this, but I will keep this article clean. But at the end of the day it is a person’s choice what they do with their complete day.

Your Nutritional Needs.

When I was working from ten up to twenty hours a day on occasions, I still managed to do exercise, but I found that i was not eating regular meals and what i was eating was probably fast food. Now eating takeaway food is great, but not on a regular basis. Now eating those things that you like, that are probably not that very good for you is quite normal for most people, but you may want to consider cutting down on fast food and looking to eat a more balanced nutritious diet.

I love my food but even I now eat much healthier than when I was a serving police officer. So, what should I eat more of? Well the first thing to understand there is absolutely no rush to improve your diet. It is not completed overnight and you should not just cut everything out of your diet immediately, otherwise you will find yourself overwhelmed and decide just to go back to what you are used to.

Start introducing more fish, fibre, fruit and vegetables into your diet. You could possible cut down on salt, saturated fat and sugars. This is a complete subject and will require some investigation on your part.

Your Requirement For Fluids.

I love a pint of beer and I know lots of other police officers like their tipple, however please remember your activity levels may go down initially when you first retire, but sometimes your beer intake stays the same, just be careful. What you drink can have a big effect on your fitness, nutrition and health.

Personally I believe that a variation of drinks is great for your body, so add some vodka, gin and scotch, only joking. We should be aiming at around two litres or three pints of fluid per day. Most of that should come from water, juices and cordials.

If you do consume lots of tea, hot chocolate, coffee or alcohol, remember that these are diuretics and produce more urine. You will want to go to the lavatory more often and your water retention capabilities are compromised, which may not be the best thing for you as you move on into your retirement.

In Conclusion.

It is your choice how you live your life, so all I am suggesting is that you seriously think about how many hours you sleep, how you exercise, what you eat and drink. Do not be afraid to seek advice or guidance on the these subjects.

As you move on through your retirement as a ex-police officer or anyone else who happens to read this article, seriously consider improving your fitness, nutrition and health, so you live a full and productive life. Good luck.

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Muscle Building Foods – Eat Right to Boost Muscle Growth

If you dropped in here to read this article, you probably really desire a well defined, muscular look. Fitness magazines, movies, celebrities are all showing off bodies with shrink wrapped muscles. They are being described as shrink wrapped because the muscle definition is so hard and angular that the skin tightly wraps around the muscle, giving it a very attractive appearance. Perfect examples of shrink wrapped muscles are when you see pictures of six pack abs where the abs seems to have grooves around them.

Gone are the days when building meant that you bulked up to look like a mini hulk. Muscle building these days is far more advanced and it is not just the exercises that have advanced to new levels. Muscle building foods play an equally important role in helping a person achieve muscle building and sculpting targets. This article will give you a brief overview of some of the most important muscle foods that will allow you to reassess your diet and prepare a better one.

Eggs – Eggs are rich in protein and several vitamins and minerals that help in muscle building. In fact, eggs are the best source of natural foods that readily provide protein for the muscles. A few eggs a day will have a tremendous impact on your muscle building efforts and it should definitely go on your list of muscle building foods.

Almonds – Two handfuls of almonds a day will give you plenty of natural vitamin E that will help with really aggressive muscle repair. Almonds will work like a charm after a heavy workout, allowing you to recover in time for your next session. They are often even referred to as muscle medicine.

Salmon – Salmon is a great source of high quality protein that is easily broken down. It is also very low in fat and high in Omega-3 fatty acids that aid in muscle recovery just like almonds.

Yoghurt – The common misconception is that yoghurt is just a chick food. However, it can provide a boost of both carbohydrates and protein that will fuel muscle growth after a workout. Buy regular yoghurt with sugar as it will be able to provide you with an insulin spike that will minimize protein breakdown following a rigorous workout. Lesser protein breakdown will mean a faster muscle building process.

You do not necessarily have to spend a lot of money on muscle supplements to get the nutrients required for muscle building. Natural foods like the ones mentioned above can be more than enough.

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Weight Loss Exercise Info – The Most Productive Cardio Machines

In most gyms across the country, you will find an everlasting choice of cardio equipment. They have everything from ellipticals to stair climbers and stationary bikes to treadmills, from treadmills to stationary bikes to stairclimbers to ellipticals.

There is no doubt that a well-planned cardio regimen plays a major part in any fat burning workout program. However, it is hard to know which machines are the best and what criteria should one use to decide which ones are the most suitable and which machines should you focus on? Hopefully, you will find the answers to these questions in the weight loss exercise tips below:

Weight Loss Exercise Tips: What to Look for When Deciding on a Machine

1) Look for a cardio machine that does not require very many skills to use.

What this means is that you should look for cardio machines that are easy and mechanical to use. Do not overdo your cardio workouts by using the machines for an hour (or more); short and extremely intense workouts should be your goal.

For this reason, balancing on the machine and sustaining specific form during your cardio sessions must not be your main concern.

A better idea is to pick an easy and straightforward cardio exercise so that you can almost entirely focus on generating high intensity levels. This is hands-down one of the best weight loss exercise tips you will ever hear.

2) Operating the machine should be safe, with low risk of injury.

One of the most significant goals with regard to cardiovascular exercises and weight training is to always keep your joints and connective tissues healthy and strong. Injuries will bring even the most well-structured and effective sessions to an immediate halt.

Therefore, it is best to stay with a cardio machine that has less impact on joints and does not make more severe any injury you might already have.

Try experimenting with different machines and see how they work for you. A machine that produces any discomfort at all is one you want to avoid.

Weight Loss Exercise Tips: What Brand of Machine Should You Use?

Stairclimber

Almost anyone, both beginners and seasoned users, can use a stair climber. Another low impact exercise option, the stairclimber allows you to stay focused on increasing the intensity of your workout. You want to avoid leaning on the handlebars, as this will lower the intensity of the exercise.

Treadmill

If you are going to carry out an interval-style program, treadmills are highly recommended. Treadmills are a great alternative to running outdoors; this is because their platforms are designed to produce less pressure on the joints. To increase the rigor of your workout, simply raise the platform up on an incline.

Upright Stationary Bike

One of the most straightforward machines, the upright stationary bike lets you put all your focus on reaching a high intensity level, without having to concern yourself with form. This is also a very low impact exercise, and it does not put pressure on your joints. Interval-style training is commonly recommended, and for this, stationary bikes are great choices as they are easily programmable.

Recumbent Bike

This allows for the same exercise choices as a stationary bike, but in a seated position. Sitting eases the pressure off your lower back. For anyone with lower back problems, this is a nice plus.

So, which cardio machines are the safest, most impressive fat burners? Hopefully, you have received your answer from the weight loss exercise tips you have been given here.

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