Monthly Archives: October 2014

What is Plyometric Exercise? And Can It Help Me Lose Weight?

When I first heard about Plyometric exercise, I became curious and wanted to know more about it and this is what I have learned. It is a muscle power increasing technique originally developed for competitive athletes. It involves dynamic resistance routines to strengthen the muscles by means of jumping and hopping hence the other known name for Plyometrics – Jump Training. I personally enjoy how the movements are very similar to the movements engaged in tennis, football, skiing and other similar sports that involved a lot of leg muscles. I can guarantee that the benefit is explosive lower body power and I engaged in it to know if it can also effectively help lose weight.

The main idea behind Plyometric exercise is to subject the body in two ways: first, the eccentric phase – the stretching of the muscles in a rapid manner; second is the concentric phase – the speedy shortening of the muscles. The results include:

  1. Strengthened muscles that help boost vertical jumps.
  2. Lessened risks of joint impacts through reduced force.
  3. Improved muscular contraction power with strengthened myotactic reflex.

The more I did Plyometric exercises, the more I learned that different muscle groups are alsorbfb_33 stimulated so I continued and saw how fat loss is improved at the same time. With Plyometrics, my performance became better so did my strength and endurance, coordination and agility. And with all of these working together, can fat transformation into lean muscle be far behind? My answer is the same as yours! As an added bonus, because of the ignited caloric burn, the perked up heart rate is another benefit to enjoy.

Spice Up Your Workout

I know how you feel when it seems you have hit a plateau in your workout. But think of the different kinds of jumps there are in Plyometrics: straddle, sumo, squat, lunge, hop over, hopscotch, skater and plank lifts – all these could help spice things up. Practice caution though because these are very high impact exercises but trust that whether you want strength, general fitness or weight loss, this program can help you achieve them.

Doing the workout up to 5 times a week can help you trim inches off your belly and hips in about a month. You will observe how your muscles, nerves and tendons are challenged but you’ll be amazed at how fun it can be. Best of all, all you need is to jump and something to jump on. No fancy equipments needed. So go ahead. Jump for Plyometrics joy and lose that weight.

Below is one plyometric exercise called “The Skater.”  It’s a great way to strengthen your body and burn fat at the same time.  For more exercise videos like this, go to:

Exercise Myths Debunked

I acknowledge that regularly exercise offers numerous benefits. It is through exercise and good, clean eating that I manage to control my weight and improve my disposition. I also know for a fact that it is a major factor in lowering the risks for certain diseases. However, I have discovered that not everything should be taken hook, line and sinker. There are common myths about exercise and I would like to offer guidance so you can fit into your practice only what is most beneficial.

Myth #1 – Exercise will result to bulking up.

Of course not! I know that a lot of girls are probably worried about this that it becomes a reason why they can’t begin an exercise program, especially one that involves some weight Exercise-Myths1lifting. In my years in this endeavor, I can tell you that this should be the least of your worries. Girls, our very low levels of testosterone will make it very difficult for us to bulk up.

Myth #2 – More cardio exercise means more weight loss.

My take on this is both YES and NO. Yes, cardio consumes a big fat percentage but so do other activities. The longer you cardio, more protein also goes to sustain energy and this could be unfavorable to the muscles. No, cardio isn’t only the answer to weight loss but workouts that dwell more on resistance and intensity. Recent studies show that high intensity workouts have better residual metabolic result leading to better impact on fat loss than prolonged cardio exercises.

Myth #3 – Spot training can make specific-area-fat-loss possible.

I can’t count the times I have shaken my head in disbelief how this idea even existed in the fitness world. In my years of experience, I have seen how spot training can tone and hqdefaultstrengthen a specific body part. Yes, certain spots can be made firmer, more compact but it is the whole training system that can help decrease significant amount of weight. If you have problem areas that you want to address, spot training will not do the trick. What will work best is to supercharge your training to achieve overall fat loss including the areas that you have issues with the most.

Myth #4 – Great quantities of protein are a must for those who exercise.

Where did this suggestion come from? High protein diet is only required for certain athletes. While it is needed by those who are into fitness, it doesn’t follow that you should wolf down protein shakes like it is a career growth. Remember, too much of anything could be harmful. What I suggest you do is consult a training professional for the recommended intake based on the exercise program you are on.

Easy and Yummy Ways to Add Vegetables to Your Diet

I remember how I dreaded those times when I was young and was made to eat vegetables. Now that I am older (and wiser, yes!), I just can’t get enough of how healthy and nutritious they are. Bright and crisp and offering a unique flavor, ah, delightful! I know that vegetables could well be the elusive fountain of youth yet many adults are still not getting enough of it.

Out of every 10 adults, 6 or 7 of them are not getting the recommended amount of daily veggie
requirement. So I thought I’d share with you some of the ways I discovered to add them into your diet.

  • Make vegetable salad and have some at each meal. Keep a jar of homemade salad dressing in your fridge and a bag of ready-to-eat greens and you can have a quick-fix salad at any given meal of the day. Toss in some sliced fruits in there for added yum!
  • If you love tacos and omelets, use leafy veggies as wraps. What a healthier way to snack than this? Instead of using pita bread or tortillas, use radicchio, escarole, cabbage or butterhead lettuce.
  • Slip in pieces, slices, or cuts of veggies into your regular dishes. I love lasagna and my way of making a healthy serving is tossing in some cooked carrots in it. I know you can use your creative genes in doing the same using other veggies to add to meals you love eating.
  • Make colorful soups. I just love how appetizing a soup can look when I see green, orange and red swimming in there. Add some diced carrots, green beans and bell peppers to your soup. It will look better and taste better too!
  • Have some raw veggies for crispy snacks. Instead of opening a bag of junk food, why not munch on celeries, carrots or other crispy vegetables so you can eat without the guilt.
  • Prepare an all-veggie pizza. Who doesn’t love a good slice of pizza? It’s everybody’s favorite snack. Combine onion slices, fresh tomatoes, bell pepper strips, slices of mushroom and some chopped basil to make a healthier topping.
  • Drink up me hearties and veggies yo-ho! That should have been what Jack Sparrow had said and I believe you would have been encouraged to have more than your daily share of healthy veggie smoothies. Blend some carrot or other veggies that will do together with some fruit juice and a little honey and you have your healthy smoothie.

See how easy it is to get your daily dose of vegetables? And since most of them

Should I Hire a Personal Trainer

Success in health and fitness does not begin and end by in simply joining a gym or buying an exercise video. I know that you, just as I am, are aware that some who embark on a physical fitness program quit after some time. That is not entirely surprising and money isn’t always the reason. Often, it is the lack of drive and inspiration.

That said, what could sustain that desire to get in shape and push fitness to a greater level? personal-trainerHow about considering a personal trainer? Let me tell you why it will make a good investment.

  • Responsibility and motivation.

A trainer will make sure results are seen in you. That’s a responsibility they take seriously and as such, they make sure to keep you motivated. Besides, the money you spend is enough motivation, if I may add.

  • Personal experience and expertise.

I used to think I could simply watch exercise videos and I’m all good. To a certain degree, yes, but there was no way I could correct the mistakes I was doing then until an expert showed me how.

If there is one person in the field of physical training who can confidently say “been there, done that”, it’s the trainer hence the expertise they are able to provide. They were once beginners too but have worked hard to become licensed fitness professionals.

  • Right push, no rush.

At first I thought all I had to do was push myself to the limit and I’ll see results. I didn’t know that there were times when harder push was needed and times when I wasn’t to rush ahead so fast. Where I was uncomfortable, I switched to different exercise. How wrong was I!

An expert showed me how to work around difficult exercises, how to modify or create a program tailor-fit for me and I just love how I learned the right way according to my fitness level that kept on improving, thanks to a supervised training. I was able to identify and reach my goals.

It is proven time and again that there are several reasons that could discourage you from working out without fail. But any of these reasons will never be entertained by a determined trainer whose aim is to see you succeed, leaving you no room to be unenthusiastic. So keep it up, don’t be stuck in a boring program and have a trainer help keep your fire …err… I mean the calories burning.

Should I Run or Walk? What’s Best For Me?

If I asked which is heavier a pound of nails or a pound of cotton, I wouldn’t be surprised if your answer is nails. Now let’s try and relate that with weight loss. Have you asked: “Should I run or should I walk?” I have asked the same question when I was trying to figure out what’s best for me when it comes to shedding the unwanted pounds. I thought back then, “Aren’t they the same?”

I know that both running and walking are great exercises but to know which is better may have to do with one’s general health and how much weight has to go. You may be fit but not so funny-running-images-3much that you can run miles. If a treadmill test with a running pace of 6 kilometers in 30 minutes increases your heartbeat to almost 160 per minute, running may not be a good choice and you may have to simply resort to walking. Both give the same end effect anyway.

The weight loss battle

When we eat, that’s putting energy in. When we exercise, that’s energy out. The equation has to be balanced to maintain an ideal weight. Without it weight gain is quite sure but the more energy you burn, the more weight is lost and running certainly helps achieve weight loss better.

Does that mean running should be the choice?

Again, that depends on your health. And to end the argument about which will provide better results, the answers lies on intensity. Yes, running is more intense but if your health dictates that you can’t run, why not do a more intense walking? Uphill walk is more intense compared to the opposite. If a 10-minute run will burn about 160 calories, then walk for 25-30 minutes to burn the same amount.

Further considerations:

  • Walking is a low impact exercise which means less chances of injury.
  • Running is like putting three times of your body weight on your knee joints.
  • Walking is ideal for those who are older, heavier or with a heart condition.
  • Running requires preparation against joint jarring, muscles cramps and the like.

My ultimate message for you is to find your fitness level, increase slowly and you are sure to reap the rewards of your efforts. The benefits coming from both exercises are proven so whether you walk or you run, the bottom line is you will feel good in many years to come.