An Easy And Healthy Workout Plan

 Exercise  Comments Off on An Easy And Healthy Workout Plan
Feb 012013
 

Do you have limited access to a workout gym? Are gym fees just too expensive? Do you find the typical workout plan too long and boring? Is 30 minutes a day just too much time to set aside for exercise?

You’re in luck.

A new study by researchers at Oregon State University indicates that small amounts of physical activity throughout your day can be just as beneficial to your health as longer bouts of physical exercise. And the small amounts of activity can be just one to two minute increments that add up to 30 minutes a day.

According to the researchers, “an active lifestyle approach, as opposed to structured exercise, may be just as beneficial in improving health outcomes, including preventing metabolic syndrome, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.” This is their conclusion after studying 6,000 American adults.

What may be more important is that 43% of the people who participated in “short bouts” of physical activity met the activity guidelines of 30 minutes a day. In comparison, only 10% of the participants of the longer bouts of structured exercise routines met the 30 minute per day guideline. In other words, it is easier for people to exercise 30 minutes each day by being physically active in short intervals throughout the day, rather than exercising for 30 minutes in one, long session.

What’s even better, is that you can incorporate these short bouts of activity into your daily routine. You can do things like

  • Standing up and pacing while talking on the phone
  • Walk to deliver a message rather than using email or phoning
  • Walk up stairs rather than using the elevator or escalator
  • Do some simple exercises while commercials are on TV
  • Get up and get your own refreshments rather than asking someone else to do it for you
  • Cut your grass with a push lawnmower
  • Sweep your driveway with a broom rather than an air blower
  • Walk short distances rather than driving
  • Vacuum more often

I think that you get the idea.

The health benefits of the shorter bouts of activity compared well with the longer bouts of a structured exercise routine. For example, 89% of the people who met the 30 minute guideline with short bouts of activity did not develop metabolic syndrome, compared to 87% of the people using the structured exercise approach. “Metabolic syndrome is the name for a group of risk factors that raises your risk for heart disease and other health problems, such as diabetes and stroke,” according to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.

The one drawback with the shorter activity intervals is that it did not help people lose weight.

In general, however, you can stay healthy by incorporating short periods of easy physical activities throughout your daily routine, as long as it totals at least 30 minutes a day of physical activity. In the long run, you are more likely to stick with this easy workout plan, and you will be healthier.

Sources:

Oregon State University: "Taking Stairs, Raking Leaves May Equal a Trip to the Gym"

National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute: "What Is Metabolic Syndrome?"

Diet And Abdominal Exercises That Get You Six Pack Abs

 Diet, Exercise  Comments Off on Diet And Abdominal Exercises That Get You Six Pack Abs
Dec 252012
 

According to personal trainer and registered dietitian Jim White, “…a muscular physique – and, yes, sculpted abs – are definitely achievable.” However, it will take some discipline and desire to have the right diet and abdominal exercise routine.

The first step in reshaping your body into a lean and mean machine is to have the proper diet.

  1. Men, especially, need to watch their meal portion size. We men have a tendency to eat too much. Eat just enough to sustain health and energy levels, but not more than that.
  2. Eating five to six small meals a day will help you burn more body fat, and maintain energy levels throughout the day. Just make sure that these meals are small in portion size.
  3. Definitely stay away from white flour products. You may consider staying away from all wheat products as explained in a previous post titled "Learn How Wheat May Be Preventing You From Having A Flat Belly." Modern wheat is being considered by a growing number of dieticians and doctors to be a super carbohydrate that is very good at increasing your body fat.
  4. Stay away from simple, white carbohydrates like potatoes, pasta, white rice and chips. Sugars and processed carbs are definitely junk foods that you need to stay away from.
  5. Stay away from foods with hidden calories and sugars like granola bars, juices and processed cereals.
  6. Stay away from fried foods and fatty meats.
  7. Good, complex carbohydrates include sweet potatoes, brown rice, oatmeal, quinoa and beans or legumes.
  8. Lean proteins include grilled and skinless chicken, cold water fish like salmon and sardines, egg whites, and ground turkey.
  9. A few almonds and protein shakes will help you burn stored fat.
  10. Make breakfast your largest meal. This will speed up your metabolism and give you energy throughout the day.

Exercise, of course, is the other half of the fitness equation.

  1. Do a thirty minute aerobic routine before you eat breakfast. This can include running, rowing, boxing or jumping rope. Then you can eat breakfast after the workout. Rowing and boxing are excellent exercises, because they both use multiple muscles groups and your core muscles.
  2. In the middle of the day, you should do a full body workout. This is when you are using all the muscle groups throughout your body. A few examples of full body exercises include The Bicycle Maneuver, Dumbbell Squats and Dumbbell Lunges.
  3. Either following the morning aerobic workout or the midday full body workout, you should do 20 to 50 repetitions of abdominal exercises like Hanging Leg Raises, Abdominal V-Ups, Bicycle Crunch, Planks and Side Oblique Crunches.

Hanging Leg Raises Video

Abdominal V-Up Video

Bicycle Crunch Video

Plank Video

Side Oblique Crunch Video

For those of you who are already in shape and can spend a lot of time working out, you can get firm abs in about three weeks. For the rest of us, it will probably take about six months.

Just remember that the models that you see on TV or in the movies workout six hours a day with a personal trainer. So don’t be discouraged if you don’t look quite as awesome as they do. However, with the diet and abdominal exercise routine describe above, you can develop an awesome looking body that will impress most of our unfit population.

References:

Health on TODAY: "Get six-pack abs like the guys in 'Magic Mike'"

Why It Is Important For You To Be Able To Sit And Rise From The Floor Without Hands

 Exercise  Comments Off on Why It Is Important For You To Be Able To Sit And Rise From The Floor Without Hands
Dec 152012
 

I was a little concerned at first because I couldn’t rise from the floor without using my hands. Try it yourself. It’s not easy. But with a little practice, I found a way to do it without using my hands or knees. Now I’m a little happier.

To say the least, I will now add a sitting and rising from the floor routine to my daily exercise workouts.

You may want to improve your ability to do this exercise yourself. Results of a study conducted by Dr. Claudio Gil Araujo at the Clinimex – Exercise Medicine Clinic in Rio de Janeiro indicate that those of us who can do this exercise are less likely to die anytime soon compared to those who can’t do this exercise.

Take a look at the video below to see how the study was conducted.

The study tested 2002 adults of both sexes aged 51 to 80 years old in their ability to sit and rise from the floor. Their ability was scored from 0 to 5 with one point being subtracted from 5 whenever a hand or knee was used for support. The researchers then followed up on the people tested for an average of 6.3 years.

During the test period, 159 people died. As it turned out, the majority of the deaths were people who had low test scores. Only two deaths occurred to people with the highest score.

This test indicates that aerobic fitness is not the only important aspect of fitness as we get older. Strength and flexibility is equally important. The high test scores reflect the ability of fit adults to be able to be continuously active in their daily lives.

If you haven’t done this type of activity in a while, you may find it difficult at first to do it. Start by sitting down on the floor and getting up again with some hand and knee support. As your muscles increase in strength and flexibility, you will find it easier and easier to do. Just keep doing it every day. You’ll live longer and healthier.

Take a look at this extra video below to learn how to do this exercise properly.

References:

European Journal of Preventive Cardiology: "Ability to sit and rise from the floor as a predictor of all-cause mortality"

ScienceDaily: "Abilit to Sit and Rise from the Floor Is Closely Correlated With All-Cause Mortality Risk"