Allow me to introduce you to the TRX suspension trainer, a great tool that has been very popular with my personal training and small group training clients. Suspension Training is a revolutionary method of leveraged bodyweight exercise. Weighing less than 2lbs, the TRX is more than just one of the most versatile pieces of exercise equipment available, it’s a complete training system. Use it at home, outdoors, or even in your hotel room. Safely perform hundreds of exercises that build power, strength, flexibility, balance, mobility, and prevent injuries, all at the intensity you choose.
Seeing pictures of people holding their entire body weight on two straps may be intimidating to some. In order to do several of the moves on the TRX you need to have good core strength and you also should have a qualified fitness professional with you to be certain you are doing it correctly until you get the swing of things. It comes with instructions but the downside to that is if you’re new to exercise, how will you know you’re doing it correctly.
You’re not going to fall over when you use the TRX, but you are going to experience new physical sensations and challenges on your body that may seem unfamiliar. After a few sessions on the TRX, you’ll feel more coordinated and be better at executing exercises. As you pay greater attention to your body, you’ll probably notice that, like many people, you have imbalances in your strength in three areas:
1. Pushing versus pulling,
2. Squatting versus lunging
3. Asymmetries between the right and left sides of your body
Learn how to execute movements on the TRX properly with good form. Take the time to develop good training habits, because they’ll stick with you as you reach a higher level of fitness and progress to more challenging exercises and training protocols.
If you’re interested in using the TRX, and you don’t have access to a Personal Trainer, taking a class would be a good way to expose yourself to this wonderful training tool before making a commitment to purchase.
1. Acceptance-It all starts with you. First and foremost, you must acknowledge and accept that you need to make a change. Nothing can happen unless you take the first step.
2. Make an appointment- Grab that Blackberry, I Phone, PDA or appointment book and make an appointment with yourself. Even if you only find 30 min of free time to exercise in that day, pencil yourself in. Whether it be morning, noon, or night. If you can’t make it to the gym or your favorite fitness class try moving more during the day and break it up into three 10 minute increments.
3. Patience- It’s very important to realize that you didn’t get that way in two weeks so you won’t be able to undo it in two weeks. Patience is key! FYI-A pound of body fat equals 3500 calories. So if you have a calorie deficit of 500 calories (meaning that you burn 500 calories more than you eat each day) you would lose approximately one pound per week: 500x 7= 3,500
4. Start Slow- You’re back in the gym and you can’t wait to get started. You’re so motivated that you’re ready to run 10 miles on the treadmill five days a week. Think again. A routine like this will definitely burn you out and may have an adverse effect on you. You have to walk before you run. For the first month or so, start off going to the gym 3 times a week, leaving at least one day of rest in between and let your body build gradually build up to going four or five times.
Metabolic rate is the rate at which the body burns up calories. A body that consumes 3,000 calories a day and burns 3,000 calories a day will stay at the same weight. A body consuming 3,000 calories daily but burning only 2,500 will gain weight at the rate of about one pound a week. You burn calories to provide energy for three main functions:
Basil Metabolic Rate: This is the amount of calories you burn just by being alive, even when you’re doing nothing. It accounts for approximately 60 percent of calories you burn.
Burning Calories For Activity: This is the energy used during movement- from lifting your arm to button your shirt to cleaning house. This accounts for approximately 30 percent of the calories you burn.
Dietary Thermogenesis: The calories burned in the process of eating, digesting, absorbing and using food.
You can influence all these factors, and speed up your rate of burning calories, using the following tactics:
• Build muscle: increase the amount of muscle in your body. For every extra pound of muscle you put on, your body uses around 50 extra calories a day.
• Be active: the average person burns about 30 percent of calories through daily activity; sedentary people only use about 15 percent. Taking every opportunity to move can make quite a difference to the amount of calories you burn.
• Eat spicy foods: spices, especially chili, can raise the metabolic rate by up to 50 percent for up to 3 hours after you’ve eaten a spicy meal.
• Aerobic exercise: high-intensity exercise makes you burn more calories during exercise and for several hours afterwards.
• Eat little often: eating healthy small regular meals will keep your metabolism going faster than larger, less frequent meals and often helps control hunger, making you less likely to binge.
*Source: Lifestyle Technologies
Since food is an important part of many holidays, celebrations, family and cultural traditions. In fact, special occasions often center around food. Consider these 10 tips for fully enjoying the holiday season without gaining weight!
1. Focus on weight maintenance vs. weight loss during the holidays.If you are currently overweight and want to lose weight, this is not the time to do it. Maintenance of your present weight is a big enough challenge during the holiday season.
2. Plan on NOT dieting after the New Year. Anticipation of food restriction sets you up for binge-type eating over the holidays. It has been found that restrictive diets don’t work in the long run.
3. Be physically active every day. Physical activity, especially aerobic activities (like brisk walking, jogging,bicycling, roller blading, and swimming) can help relieve stress, regulate appetite, and burn up extra calories from holiday eating.
4. Eat a light snack before going to holiday parties. It is not a good idea to arrive at a party famished. Try eating some almonds or an apple before you go.
5. Make a plan. Think about where you will be, who you will be with, what foods will be available, what foods are really special to you (that you really want to eat) vs. those that you could probably do without, what are your personal triggers to overeat and how can you minimize them.
6. Take steps to avoid recreational eating. At parties and holiday dinners, we tend to eat (or keep eating) beyond our body’s physical hunger simply because food is there and eating is a “social thing.” To avoid recreational eating, consciously make one plate of the foods you really want.
7. Reduce the fat in holiday recipes. There are plenty of low fat and low calorie substitutes that are amazingly tasty.
8. Choose your beverages wisely. Alcohol is high in calories. Liquors, sweet wines and sweet mixed drinks contain 150-450 calories per glass. By contrast, water and diet sodas are calorie-free. If you choose to drink, select light wines and beers, and use non-alcoholic mixers such as water and diet soda. Limit your intake to 1 or 2 alcoholic drinks per occasion. And, watch out for calories in soda, fruit punch, and egg nog as well. Try adding a lemon lime diet drink with wine to make a wine spritzer and always have a bottle of water handy!!
9. Enjoy good friends and family. Although food can be a big part of the season, it doesn’t have to be the focus. Holidays are a time to reunite with good friends and family, to share laughter and cheer, to celebrate and to give thanks.
10. Maintain perspective: Overeating one day won’t make or break your eating plan. And it certainly won’t make you gain weight! It takes days and days of overeating to gain weight.
Now go out and enjoy the holiday season!
Source: Lifestyle Technologies
Thanksgiving has passed and Christmas is quickly approaching. Don’t let the hustle and bustle of the holiday season be the reason why you give your exercise routine the boot. It’s hard to resist all the great food, not to mention, a holiday gathering is much more fun than an hour on the treadmill. Here are three tips that will help you stay on track:
1.) Implement fitness goals and stick with them. Set a workout schedule and have an idea of what you are going to work on before going to the gym. Without a plan it’s easy to start missing your routines.
2.) Make it a priority to be as active as possible everyday. Aim to get your body moving for a total of at least 30 minutes. Try taking the stairs instead of the elevator or going for a brisk walk. The more you move, the more you burn.
3.) When you’re pressed for time, grab your weights. Muscle aids in burning fat, and will help fight off the extras you normally don’t consume. If you’re going to cut your workout short for the day, I would suggest hitting the weights first, even at the expense of cardio.
Don’t Forget to Breathe
I know a lot of people who know nothing about Yoga. Half of those people don’t want to know anything about Yoga (they have they’re reasons) and the other half are curious but haven’t taken that plunge yet. Whatever your reasoning (or excuse, whichever is more appropriate for you), there are many things you can do without a Yoga class that will benefit your health and strength (mentally and physically).
The first foundation of Yoga (without doing any Yoga) is breathing. Most of you will either look at the screen confounded or wonder, “how can we learn about breathing? I already know how to breathe!” Even though we naturally breathe (if we don’t breathe, people will be singing and crying at our funerals), most of us don’t know how to breathe properly or fully. If you’re a cigarette smoker, it can be even more difficult to breathe fully.
Yoga classes can teach you how to increase your capacity to inhale and exhale. Yoga can also show you how breathing techniques can help to heal the body and mind. But why the focus on something that we can do naturally anyway? What most people don’t realize is that the breath is the link between the body and the mind. Even more amazing is the correlation between the breath and the emotions. Think about it…when you’re angry, what happens to your breath? It gets heavy and short. At times, you will hold the breath until you’re red in the face. What happens to your breath when you cry? Your breath gets short and stops – like hiccups. No matter what emotion you have, there is a breathing pattern to match it. Whatever emotions you have affects your mind and for most, these deepest and darkest emotions can affect the muscles and joints as well.
Above all else, Yoga teaches you how your breath relates to your spirit. What do we consider the soul/spirit? That part of your life-force that connects to the Divine. The Chinese call this life-force “chi” and the Indians call this life-force “prana.” Air itself is not life-force but it is a vehicle for the life-force that enters your body and pervades your spirit and mind. So as we learn how to breathe better, we open ourselves up to having more life-force enter our spirit for that true mind-body-spirit connection.
Reading all of this will make most people new to Yoga ready to run to the first yoga class. Know that most yoga places won’t teach breathing techniques, much less teach it to beginners. That’s because the practice of pranayama (prana = life force, ayama = extension) is subtle and powerful and can damage your body and mind if not done properly and not under the supervision of an experienced and well trained teacher. But don’t fret…there are breathing techniques that the average person can learn that will help them to breathe, live, and feel better. The next time I write to you, I will let you know exactly what they are.
Until then, know this. No matter what happens in your life, when you are at your worst, you want to cry, kick, and scream and don’t know what to do….don’t forget to breathe!
Talk to you soon.
As a mother, wife, student, and entrepreneur, I truly identify with the image above. Some aspects may take a back seat to others but somehow I manage to get things done. It wasn’t always like this though. I was the kind of mother who would totally put everything before myself and unfortunately I burned out.
Here’s some of the main things I’ve learned in the past 16 years of being a parent. Dare I share it with you? Warning- it’s not all nice!
1. No matter how many mistakes you make, your kids will always love you.
2. Never compare yourself to others, you’ll be surprised to find out what’s really going on behind the scenes.
3. Being a parent is only an extension of the person you already are.
4. If it doesn’t get done today, there’s always tomorrow.
5. Put your oxygen mask on before your child’s. As mothers our natural instinct is to put our kids first but if you are passed out, how are you going to help anyone else? It’s imperative that you make time for you, even if you have to lock yourself in the bathroom for 30 minutes.
One Shoe Fits All?
Not necessarily! There are numerous brands and styles of shoes on the market today; however, there is no one best brand. Running shoes should be selected after careful consideration. Some factors to keep in mind when looking for a new shoe include past experiences with shoes, problems with your current shoe, biomechanical needs (arch type, pronation, orthopedic injuries, etc.), environmental conditions, and running and racing requirements. It pays to do a little homework.
The Characteristics of Your Foot
First, you need decide what shape of shoe you need based on your foot type. A stability shoe works best for a normal foot with a normal arch, a motion-control shoe is good for a flat foot with a low arch, and a cushioned shoe works for a rigid foot with a high arch.
Guidelines for Purchasing Shoes:
- Purchase running shoes from a good running shoe store or from someone knowledgeable about matching the correct type of running shoes based on your foot type and stride pattern. They can help you with fit as well as specific characteristics of the shoe for which you are looking. They can also keep you informed of manufacturing changes in your favorite brand of shoe. Watch for shoes with excessive wear. Worn shoes often amplify a foot problem and injuries can occur when a shoe is worn too long before being replaced. Analyze the need to purchase new shoes based on the number of miles on your old pair of shoes, not by the amount of tread left on the outer sole. It varies among shoes and individuals, but most estimates place mid-sole breakdown, and the increased potential for injury, at around 400-500 miles. For some, this means replacing shoes before they show major wear.
- Eighty-five percent of the public wears shoes that are too small. Running shoes may need to be a half to a full size larger than street shoes. Check for adequate room at the top. There should be at least a half inch of space between the top of the shoe and the longest toe. The shoe should have adequate room at the widest part of the foot. The shoe shouldn’t be tight but it shouldn’t slide around either, and your heel should fit snugly into the rear of the shoe.
- Try shoes on later in the day and bring the socks you normally run in. Try on several pairs of shoes in the category closest to your foot type. Make sure you try on both shoes and keep them on your feet for about 10 minutes to make sure they remain comfortable. Most good stores will allow you to run up and down the block to experience what running will feel like.
- Consider purchasing two pairs of running shoes. Alternating their use increases the life expectancy of each pair.
- Once you’ve purchased new shoes, don’t try them out for the first time with a 12-mile run or a heavy track workout. Rather, run easily in the shoe for only a short distance. The key point is to have sufficient time to break the new pair in through logging around 60-70 miles. After you have wisely selected your new running shoe, take it home, put it on and enjoy the run!