June 13, 2013 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
These full-blast workout routines focus on the three parts of your deltoids, resulting in stronger, bigger shoulder muscles. If you want cannonball delts, grab your weightlifting gloves and get to work with these routines!
For each of these moves, you should use an amount of weight that results in muscle failure by the specified reps. Before beginning any of these workouts, warm-up for ten minutes and stretch your muscles.
The Front Delt
Start by doing three sets of ten overhead presses, then move into three sets of ten upright rows. Next, do three sets of eight front dumbbell raises followed by three sets of ten one-arm machine front raises. Finish off the workout with two sets of ten seated dumbbell lateral raises and two sets of ten standing cable reverse flies. These are all just focusing on one part of the shoulders!
The Middle Delt
Build the middle section of your delts by doing three sets of ten seated dumbbell presses, then three sets of ten overhead presses. Do three sets of eight reps of standing dumbbell lateral raises followed by three sets of eight reps of machine lateral raises. End the workout by using your training grips to complete two sets of ten reps of bent-over cable lateral raises and two sets of ten front barbell raises.
The Rear Delt
Start this heavy-duty shoulder workout with three sets of ten reps of front barbell raises, then do three sets of ten Arnold presses. Next, do three sets of eight bent-over dumbbell lateral raises followed by three sets of ten reverse pec-deck flies. Finish off the workout routine with two sets of ten front cable raises with rope and two sets of ten cable lateral raises.
What are your favorite shoulder-strengthening workout moves? Share your best tips for getting ripped delts with our readers in the comments section below!
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June 10, 2013 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
You don’t have to have a gym membership or hours of free time to burn calories and tone your body. With this workout, all you need is a half hour, space at home, hand weights and a good pair of fitness grips! The routine includes strength-training exercises that will tone and boost your muscles, plus cardio intervals that will increase your heart rate and help you burn calories. Prepare to break a serious sweat!
Start with two minutes of old-school jumping jacks to get your heart pumping and work your calves, shoulders, thighs and back.
Next, put on your training gloves and do side lunges while holding five to eight pound dumbbells. Do 24 reps on each side.
Go into 24 forward lunges per leading side to work your abs, legs and hips, then jump in place for two minutes. Pretend like you are jumping rope to get your heart pounding!
Next, hold the plank position for one minute to work your core. Flex your abs for support, take a 20 second break and hold the position for another minute.
Put your fitness grips back on and do 16 reps of small arm circles on each side, holding a five to eight pound dumbbell. Keep your palms up and elbows bent as you make a small circle.
Bust out that jump rope move for another two minutes to keep your heart rate up, then work your triceps by doing 24 overhead extensions using your weights.
Last, but not least, do 50 crunches to work your core before finishing the workout with two more minutes of jumping jacks. Don’t forget to cool down with a stretch!
Are you too busy to get to the gym? How do you stay fit at home when you already have a full schedule? Share your best tips with our readers in the comments section below!
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June 6, 2013 | Filed Under Exercise | No Comments
A strong, well-developed back improves your posture and gives you the strength you need to perform everyday tasks that require pulling. If you want a ripped, strong back, grab your fitness grips and follow this two-day workout routine to get results.
This workout focuses on building strength and size, so don’t be afraid to use heavier weights. Complete three sets of the following exercises, resting for one minute in between sets.
Start by doing six to eight one-arm dumbbell rows per arm. This power move emphasizes the entire lat, the trap muscles and the upper back.
Next, do eight to ten one-arm straight-arm lat pull-downs per arm. This isolation exercise will give you that elusive V-taper and build up your lats.
After resting for one minute, do eight to ten reps of reverse wide-grip lat pull-downs. Use your core for support to really work your lats.
Finish with eight reps of seated wide-grip cable rows, taking caution not to bounce or pause at the bottom of the lift.
Give your muscles and your workout gloves a rest for two or three days, then move on to workout two.
You will do the same exercises during this workout as you did in workout one, but the increase in reps creates a focus on building endurance.
Start with 12 reps of reverse wide-grip lat pull-downs. Do three sets, resting for 45 seconds to one minute in between.
Next, complete 12 reps of alternating one-arm dumbbell rows per arm. Do two sets without resting in between.
Move onto 12 reps of seated wide-grip cable rows. Do three reps, then rest for up to one minute.
Finish the workout with 12 reps of alternative one-arm straight-arm lat pull-downs per arm. Do two sets, then pat yourself on the back. You deserve it!
What are your favorite back exercises? Share your most effective routine with our readers in the comments below!
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May 30, 2013 | Filed Under Benefits of Exercise | No Comments
Building strength and gaining speed are common exercise goals, but few people know exactly what to do to reach these aims. The secret to boosting both your muscle power and speed is explosive moves that focus on multidirectional stability and power. Grab your weight training grips or gym gloves and follow this workout to get stronger, faster and fitter.
Do all the exercises as a circuit, completing 12 to 15 reps before going on to the next. After you have finished them all, rest for one minute before repeating the entire circuit twice more.
Half-Kneeling Rotational Chop
Attach a rope handle to a cable station’s high pulley and hold the handle with both hands. Wear your gym gloves for protection, then kneel on your left knee with the weight stack to your right. In one fast movement, pull the rope down past your left hip while keeping your arms straight and rotating your torso. Get back to the kneeling starting position, complete 12 to 15 reps, then repeat on the other side.
Split Squats with a Medicine Ball
Place the top of your right foot on a bench behind you, then hold a medicine ball in front of your chest with your elbows bent slightly. Lower your body slowly toward the floor while lowering the ball to your right thigh. Hold the position for two seconds, then push yourself back up as you lift the ball over your left shoulder. Do all your reps before repeating on the other side.
Shuffle Pushups with Band Resistance
Get into the pushup position with a resistance band looped around your wrists. With your left hand, reach out until the distance between your hands is approximately twice the width of your shoulders. Reach in with your right hand so your hands are shoulder-width apart again. Repeat the move to your right, then do 12 to 15 reps of this power exercise, wearing your gym gloves to prevent slipping.
What are your favorite strength and speed boosting moves? Share your top picks with our readers in the comments below!
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May 27, 2013 | Filed Under Workout Goals | No Comments
It is one of the most-asked fitness questions: “how much do I really need to workout?” There is no one-size-fits-all answer, because the amount of time and energy you need to spend breaking a sweat with your training gloves depends on your fitness goals.
The Bare Minimum
To keep your cardiovascular health in check and maintain a healthy weight, most adults should get a minimum of 75 minutes a week of intense aerobic activity or 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic activity. These workouts should be spread out over the course of seven days.
Healthy adults should aim to get at least two strength training sessions per week, but there are no specific guidelines dictating their length.
A good rule of thumb to follow is to get at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day. You can spend that time using your fitness gloves in the gym, walking the dog, cycling or gardening. Any activity that gets your heart pumping counts.
Stepping It Up a Notch
The aforementioned guidelines are the bare minimums. If you dream of having six-pack abs, an elite fitness level or bulging biceps, you are going to have to kick your exercise routine up a notch.
While brief bouts of activity are a good way to get into the fitness mindset, 150 minutes a week just won’t cut it if your fitness goals are more serious. You can accomplish more with longer workouts, and your aim should be to always increase the intensity and length of your exercise. After defining your goals, work with a personal trainer to determine how much you need to exercise to reach them, then grab your fitness gloves and start working towards them!
What are your fitness goals and how much do you workout each day to reach them? Share your experiences with our readers in the comments section below!
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May 23, 2013 | Filed Under Exercise | No Comments
As you get older, you may notice some extra pounds that were not there a few years ago. Putting on excess weight with age is common, but it is not an inevitable part of the aging process. In your 50s and beyond, you burn fewer calories, your metabolism slows and your muscle mass decreases, but there is plenty you can do to prevent gaining weight.
Create Healthy Eating Habits
Eating healthy is important at any age, but it is especially essential for people in their 50s. To take control of your eating habits and lose weight, think in terms of moderation, not elimination. Occasionally indulge in your favorite foods, but make them a treat instead of a focal point of your diet.
- Listen to your body’s cues and eat balanced meals and snacks when you are hungry to avoid out-of-control eating later.
- Learn the proper portions for foods and measure it out until you can judge them accurately.
- Instead of focusing on counting calories, concentrate on making healthier food choices. Instead of sweets for dessert, switch to fresh fruits. Skip soda in favor of sipping on water or homemade flavored water, and choose whole-grain products instead of those made from refined flour.
You will need your fitness grips and workout gloves to get fit at any age. Physical activity is always a part of long-term weight loss.
- Get started slowly by sitting instead of standing, walking instead of driving or taking the stairs instead of the elevator. These small changes make movement a bigger part of your life, and every step you take adds up when it comes to weight loss.
- To reap the most health benefits, add variety to your workout routine. Do aerobic exercise to build your endurance, use your workout gloves for strength training and do exercises that improve your flexibility.
- Talk to your doctor before beginning an exercise program, and don’t be afraid to try something new. Your 50s are a great time to start a new healthy activity, like swimming, walking or playing a team sport.
Share your best tips for staying fit in your 50s with our readers in the comments section below!
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May 20, 2013 | Filed Under GRIPAD Weight Lifting Gloves | No Comments
Conventional wisdom dictates that overweight people are unhealthy and that thin people are healthy, but being thin can also be dangerous if you are a “skinny fat” person. The official term for being “skinny fat” is metabolically obese normal weight, a term used to describe someone who has too much fat and not enough muscle. People under this distinction may look thin, but they are not in shape.
The majority of Americans are overweight, and millions of them have been diagnosed with pre-diabetes, Type 1 diabetes or Type 2 diabetes, but nearly a quarter of skinny people also have pre-diabetes and are considered “metabolically obese.” These people have an increased rate of death when diagnosed with diabetes than overweight people.
Testing Your Health
Instead of using the scale as an indicator of your physical fitness and health, see your doctor for these important tests:
- Blood pressure
- HDL (good cholesterol)
- Fasting blood sugar or glucose
- Insulin response test
- NMR lipid particle test
These tests are essential for people who automatically assume they are healthy because they are thin. Taking a second look at your health can reveal metabolic obesity, which is just as dangerous, if not more, than actually being obese.
Becoming Skinny Fat
Many people become skinny fat by losing weight the wrong way. They cut calories but skip using their workout grips or fitness gloves on a regular basis. Drastically cutting calories forces their bodies to rely on lean muscle mass for energy, causing the body to store more fat for future energy use. This puts their energy balance totally out of whack, and although they shrink sizes because their lean muscle mass is disappearing, they are still storing more body fat… leading to becoming skinny fat.
Be honest… are you skinny fat? What’s your plan for getting in real shape and building lean muscle mass? Share your ideas with our readers in the comments below!
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May 16, 2013 | Filed Under GRIPAD Weight Lifting Gloves | No Comments
Health misinformation runs rampant in today’s world of instant messages, Twitter updates and spam e-mail. In the blink of an eye and the click of a mouse, wild stories about health spread around the world via the Internet. Fortunately, most of the health scares you see online are at best a misinterpretation of the facts and at worst blatant lies. Here are two common health myths you may have seen in your inbox and the truth about them.
- MILK is the best source of calcium and essential to bone health.
Contrary to popular belief and the extensive marketing efforts of the dairy industry, no study has found that dairy products increase bone health. Calcium, consumed together with other nutrients like Magnesium and Vitamin D are essential for bone health, but every study is conducted with supplementation and not with actual milk, cheese, etc. Making the claim that “Milk is the number one source of calcium” literally just means that we drink a lot of milk in this country and so that is where we are getting the most of our calcium! Considering that the majority of the world’s population cannot handle dairy very well, or at all, sometimes leading to side effects like digestive issues, chronic infections, skin conditions and more, there are many other foods that can serve as better sources of calcium without that added growth hormones and other chemicals that are present in most conventional dairy products. Sesame seeds, almonds, chick peas (garbanzo beans), and leafy greens like kale, collards and turnip greens are packed with calcium, not to mention tons of other micronutrients that have been found to prevent disease and manage a healthy weight. If your body type does handle dairy well, then opt for the best quality in moderation like real Greek yogurt and grass-fed cheeses. Don’t forget that many studies have found that physical activity DOES boost bone health, so encouraging the use of your weight lifting gloves is more important than downing glasses of milk. In addition to physical activity, a diet loaded with fruits and vegetables will help maintain a healthy body weight.
- EGGS boost your bad cholesterol.
Eggs have gotten a bad rap for over 50 years, when researchers linked them with heart disease. What we know now is that those studies were flawed and biased, being conducted by the Cereal Institute, the lobby group for…well, you guessed it: cereal and grains. It’s not a coincidence that soon after, cereal became a staple food on American breakfast tables and the consumption of eggs and meat declined. But, rather than heart disease, diabetes, and other health issues declining too, they only got worse. What’s the disconnect? The real culprit was sugar, not fat and cholesterol, and now we just added a huge load of additional sugar to our diets by upping our intake of cereals and grains.
Eating an egg a day is fine, as they are a great source of vitamins A and D and lean protein. Eat one before you use your workout gloves for fuel, and be sure to eat plenty of vegetables and other whole foods throughout the day.
We have all believed at least a few common health rumors, but remember research is key. Make sure you know the source of your information and be sure to steer clear of industry funded research, because their first priority is to sell products, not look after your health.
What health myths have you fallen for? What are the wildest ones you have heard?
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May 13, 2013 | Filed Under GRIPAD Weight Lifting Gloves | No Comments
While some fats are good for your body, trans fats have no place in a healthy diet. Unlike other types of fat, this cardiovascular troublemaker lowers your good cholesterol while raising your bad cholesterol. This combination raises your risk of heart disease, the greatest killer of both men and women.
What is trans fat?
Through the process of hydrogenation, trans fat is created when vegetable oil and hydrogen combine. The combo increases the shelf life of the oil and helps keep foods stay fresh longer. It also increases your cholesterol levels more than other types of fats.
Trans fat in your diet
Trans fats are most commonly found in commercial baked goods, like cakes, cookies and crackers. Fried foods, like french fries and doughnuts, are also often loaded with them. Working out with your weightlifting gloves or gym grips may help you burn off the calories from these foods, but it won’t eliminate the effects of trans fat in your diet.
Understanding food labels
The amount of trans fat in a food must be listed on its nutrition label in the United States, but foods that have less than 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving may be classified as having 0 grams of trans fat. That may seem like a miniscule amount, but it adds up when you eat multiple servings of foods with less than 0.5 grams of trans fat.
Foods that list partially hydrogenated vegetable oil as an ingredient also contain trans fats. “Completely” or “fully” hydrogenated oils do not contain trans fat because they are made through a different process than partially hydrogenated vegetable oil.
The effects of trans fat
Trans fat has an unhealthy effect on cholesterol levels, and eating too much of it can raise your risk of developing heart disease. The fats raise your “bad” cholesterol, which can cause the formation of plaques on the walls of your arteries. These fatty deposits can reduce blood flow through your arteries.
Trans fat also increases triglycerides, a type of fat in the blood that may thicken the artery walls and contribute to atherosclerosis.
Share with our readers: How do you avoid trans fats and get the right amount of healthy fats in your diet?
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May 10, 2013 | Filed Under Nutrition | No Comments
Exercising with your fitness grips can certainly help you burn fat and build lean muscle, but taking a daily dose of supplements can round out your diet and help you reach your fitness goals. If you are trying to reach your physical best, you may want to consider these supplements.
Exercising really takes a toll on your body, including the loss of essential vitamins. If you train hard, you need a multivitamin every day to make up for the loss.
If training with your workout gloves makes you feel run down, glutamine may help put a spring back in your step and reduce infection and inflammation. It can even stimulate muscle growth by regulating the glycogen within your body.
- Conjugated Linoleic Acid
Certain types of fat are an essential part of a healthy diet, and this supplement is a great source of omega fatty acids. This type of “good fat” can actually help you lose the fat that makes you flabby, and it also helps preserve muscle tissue.
This nutrient is vital both before and after your workouts. Protein stimulates muscle growth, and grabbing a nutrition bar loaded with it or having a shake made from protein powder is a great way to fuel your body for a workout or recover after breaking a sweat. Just make sure your supplemental source isn’t also loaded with unnecessary sugars. Sugar depletes the body of nutrients as well and can basically cancel out any good effect you were getting from your supplement source.
Creatine is essential for building lean muscle mass and strength. Taking a creatine supplement every day can boost your growth factor by over 20 percent, but be careful not to take too much so you can avoid negative side effects.
- Branched Chain Amino Acids
If you work out to the point of fatigue and muscle soreness but still don’t see fat loss, try taking this supplement to reduce soreness and enhance your fat burning potential.
What supplements do you use to reach your fitness goals? Share your favorites with our readers in the comments below!
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May 7, 2013 | Filed Under Nutrition | No Comments
Protein, carbs and healthy fats get a lot of attention when it comes to an athlete or bodybuilder’s diet, but citrus fruits deserve just as much focus. If you want to lose weight and get fit, including them in your diet is just as important as using your gym grips. Packed with antioxidants and essential nutrients, these tasty fruits reduce the risk of certain chronic diseases and can help control your appetite. Read on to learn how to incorporate them into any meal to boost your health and help reach your fitness goals.
- Add Flavor & Fiber to a Salad.
Infuse a vegetable-heavy salad with a touch of sweetness by tossing in some grapefruit slices or mandarin oranges. Citrus fruits taste good in any basic salad, but they are especially delicious in an Asian-inspired salad made with tomatoes, spinach, grilled chicken and snow peas. Add some peanuts or cashews for a bit of a crunch, and then top it off with a mixture of soy sauce, oil and vinegar. Tasty and nutritious, this light lunch will keep you full all afternoon.
- Spike your Water.
Staying hydrated is important, especially when you are working out with your weightlifting gloves, but if plain water gets boring for you now and then, liven it up without adding unhealthy sugars. Adding fruit slices like lemon, oranges, or lime can make a refreshing difference. You can squeeze some juice right from the fruit in their too for a light flavor. You can also bring your creative inner chef out and try mixing fruit or fruit and herbs. A couple favorites of ours here at the GRIPAD offices is Strawberry/Lavender (strawberry slices and sprigs of fresh lavender) or Watermelon/Mint (diced watermelon and fresh mint leaves.) ENJOY!
- Snack with Citrus Salsa.
Top off your favorite lean protein, like chicken or fish, with a spoonful of citrus salsa. This treat is easy to make – just combine diced pineapple, mango, red pepper, red onion and fresh chopped cilantro. The high levels of vitamin C in all of these fruits boost the fish and poultry’s bioavailability, so the salsa is a winning combination of flavor and health benefits.
We want to know – what are your favorite citrus recipes? Share your best dishes using these flavorful fruits in the comments below!
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May 3, 2013 | Filed Under Nutrition | No Comments
Aptly named, supplements are designed to add-on your diet, and to round out your intake of micronutrients, calories and macronutrients. If you want six pack abs, supplements may be a great way to ensure you have all your nutritional bases covered, but not everyone needs supplements or will benefit from them. To find out if supplements are right for you, ask yourself these questions.
Am I eating enough fruits and vegetables?
Many bodybuilders focus on meats, grains and fat sources, completely ignoring the produce aisle, but fruits and veggies contain something these other foods are lacking: micronutrients. These complex chemicals, vitamins and nutrients are just as essential for getting a six pack as working out with your weight training grips.
If you are not eating enough produce with every meal, you may need a supplement to boost your levels of vitamins and nutrients. Remember, though, nothing beats the real thing!
Am I timing my nutrients properly?
Your food choices are obviously important, but so is your timing, especially when eating carbs in the form of grains. For most people, the best time to scarf down some starches is before and after a tough training session with your fitness grips. Eating starches before you training provides your muscles with glycogen, and you need to replenish those stores after a workout with more starches and sugars. Eating carbs after a workout also raises your insulin levels temporarily and facilitates protein synthesis for muscle growth. If you can’t get your hands on some carbs at these important times, consider using a supplement.
Where am I getting protein from?
Many of the most popular types of supplements contain protein, but whole foods are really the best sources of this muscle-building nutrient. When you get protein from whole food sources like nuts, seeds, vegetables, lean meat, eggs, poultry and fish, instead of from a protein shake, you also get a variety of minerals, fats, vitamins and other nutrients. Instead of getting all your protein from a shake, head to the grocery store!
Do you take supplements to get killer abs? What are your favorites?
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May 1, 2013 | Filed Under Workouts | No Comments
There are some legitimate reasons for skipping a workout, like nursing an injury, but most of the time excuses are just a way to talk yourself out of exercising. The excuses we come up with, no matter how lame, are a way to make us more comfortable with skipping the workout. When your psyche is throwing excuses at you, follow this guide to overcome the most common gym deterrents.
- The Excuse: I am too tired.
This is the top reason people blow off using their workout grips. You feel tired after a long day at work, or you just can’t seem to roll out of bed early enough to hit the gym.
If getting out from underneath the covers is your problem, make sure you are getting plenty of rest at night, or download the Sleep Cycle alarm clock app. When you set the alarm for a 30-minute window, it wakes you up in the lightest stage of sleep. When the sound blares and you open your eyes, you will feel most rested and ready to workout.
If you prefer to exercise with your weightlifting gloves at the end of the day, make a killer playlist or recruit a workout buddy to help motivate you.
- The Excuse: I don’t have enough time.
Let’s assume you are super busy and work 50 hours a week. If you get eight hours of sleep a night, you still have 62 hours leftover each week for other things. To improve your health, you should get a minimum of 75 minutes of vigorous activity each week. When you break down the numbers this way, it doesn’t sound so impossible to find time to workout, does it?
Find time by making it. Schedule your workouts like you would a business meeting or doctor’s appointment. If you are short on longer chunks of time, break your exercise into smaller pieces, like taking a brisk walk on your lunch hour or biking to the store instead of driving.
- The Excuse: Exercise is boring.
Sure, running on a treadmill for an hour may be boring, but it is a lot more fun when you watch television or read while you are breaking a sweat. And few people would call inline skating, hiking or surfing boring, yet they are all forms of exercise.
Mix up your workouts and keep them interesting by trying something new. Take a class, join a sports league or take up rollerblading. There is an exercise for everyone.
What excuses do you think of to not use your weightlifting gloves? Fess up in the comments below, then let us know how you overcome them!
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April 29, 2013 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
Anyone who has ever had a good workout has felt sore the next day. After a tough workout with your weight lifting grips, you start to experience delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS), a process caused when high intensity exercises create microscopic tears in your muscles. When your body is at rest, your muscles begin to rebuild these tears and become stronger and bigger. The soreness you feel after a workout is actually a good thing because it signals that you’ve trained intensely enough to break down muscle tissue, and as a result, you’ll be rewarded with stronger muscles.
Even though the process is healthy and necessary, sore muscles can be a pain. Here’s how to recover in time for your next workout:
- Actively Recover
It may sound counterintuitive, but one of the best ways to recover from muscle soreness is to stay active. To help heal your muscles, do an activity that is less intense than the one that caused your soreness. For example, if you are sore after running, take a light walk. If a killer chest workout with heavy weights was the culprit, do yoga or pushups to recover your arm, shoulder and chest muscles.
- Ice Your Muscles
Apply ice soon after the onset of inflammation. This method is most effective when it is started within the first 48 hours of exercise induced muscle soreness.
When you sleep, your body produces anabolic hormones that speed up the recovery process. Try to get at least eight hours of rest before you reach for your crossfit grips.
- Rest Between Workouts
Let your muscles recover in between workouts by rotating the focus of your workouts. For example, if you work your upper body one day, focus on your lower body the next.
What are your best tips for getting rid of muscle soreness? Share your best tips and tricks with our readers in the comments below!
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April 25, 2013 | Filed Under Workouts | No Comments
When it comes to working out your arms, it’s all or nothing! This hardcore workout will blast your triceps and biceps, resulting in strong, toned arms. Grab your workout gloves and get going!
Medicine Ball Pushups
Start your all or nothing arm workout with five sets of ten reps of this exercise. Place a medicine ball on the floor, then in standard pushup position, place your hands on the side of the ball. Slowly lower your body down until only an inch remains between you and the ball, then push yourself back up to the original position. To make it even harder, use only one hand on the ball.
Reverse Grip Bench Presses
Put on your workout gloves, then grab the bar with your hands a bit wider than your shoulders and your palms up. Lift the bar, hold it right above your chest, and then squeeze it hard as you arch your upper back. Lower it down to just under your nipples, then push your feet into the floor as it touches your chest. Press the weight up, then repeat for seven sets of three reps.
Keep your fitness gloves on for this move, too. Load up a barbell with more weight than you would normally curl. Use an underhand grip to hold it with your hands shoulder-width apart. Bend your knees and bend forward at the hips to gain momentum, then curl the weight by extending your knees and hips. Reverse the motion to get back to the original position. Keep adding more weight for seven sets of four reps.
Place two towels over a chin up bar. Grab one with each hand, let your body hang, then pull yourself up until your chin hovers over the bar. Lower back to the original position, then repeat for five sets of eight reps each.
How do you get shredded arms? Share your favorite exercises with our readers in the comments below!
April 22, 2013 | Filed Under Finding a Trainer | No Comments
Are you straying from your 5k training plan? Not using your fitness grips as often as you should? Confused about the best workout routine for your needs? It sounds like you need a personal trainer. If you can’t drop major money on the real thing at the gym, invest a few bucks in these awesome apps. They will motivate you, give you great workout advice and keep you moving just like a real personal trainer!
THI Personal Trainer
If you are looking for predesigned workouts, this is the best place to start. The hundreds of workouts in the library are proven to work, and every exercise is explained in full detail so you can workout safely and effectively. You can even easily track your progress and create personalized fitness reports.
Download this free app to get instant access to over 450 exercises, descriptions and photo references. Custom create your own routine, track your workouts and share your logs with family and friends through the online portal.
Jillian Michaels Slim-Down Solution
You probably can’t afford to hire Jillian as your personal trainer, but you can get the next best thing with this free app. She’ll virtually kick your butt with dozens of exercise routines and circuits. You’ll also get nutritional guidance and daily tips and tricks to help you shed pounds quickly.
If just getting to the gym is the hardest part of your workout, you need this app. It makes it easy to create a workout schedule and stick to it. You can also search for new exercises and track your progress.
Other than your gym grips and fitness grips, this app is one of the most important things you can bring to any workout. Use it to find instructional videos, connect with live personal trainers, create detailed progress reports and learn exactly what you need to do to reach your fitness goals.
What fitness apps can you not live without? Share your favorites with our readers in the comments section below!
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April 18, 2013 | Filed Under Nutrition | No Comments
We know that cutting calories is the way to lose weight, so it seems logical that skipping meals is a healthy, effective way to shed pounds, right? Wrong! Skipping meals can actually lead to weight gain. Here’s why:
- Skipping a meal tricks the body into preparing for a famine. Worried it won’t get food, the body slows down its metabolism to store more body fat and burn fewer calories. The body’s preferred fuel is carbohydrates, so skipping meals creates a carbohydrate deficit.
- When the body is in a carb deficit, it uses stored fat as an alternative source of fuel. This may sound like a benefit of fasting, but it actually isn’t because fats don’t burn completely without carbohydrates. They produce a byproduct called ketones, and these compounds can damage the liver and kidneys and make the blood more acidic.
- Skipping meals also makes you hungrier. If you skip lunch in order to lose weight, imagine how hungry you will be by the time dinner rolls around. With your stomach growling and your blood sugar low, you will be tempted to eat everything in sight. Instead of cutting calories, you may actually overeat out of hunger. You also won’t have enough energy to use your gym gloves or fitness grips!
- Skipping meals can lead to future risks in your health. In a 2007 study published in “Metabolism,” researchers found that subjects who skipped meals during the day and ate one large meal in the evening experienced risky changes in their metabolism. Participants who skipped meals had a delayed insulin response and elevated fasting glucose levels. Both of these conditions could lead to diabetes if participants continued to fast in the long term.
- Although counterintuitive, eating more meals throughout the day can actually help you lose weight better than skipping meals. The key is to eat five or six small meals throughout the day, or three meals separated by healthy snacks. Eating mini meals keeps your energy levels steady so you can use your fitness grips and prevent hunger, which in turn keeps you from overeating.
What other dieting myths have you heard? Share the wildest ones in the comments section below!
Carlson, O, B Martin, et al. "Impact of Reduced Meal Frequency Without Caloric Restriction on Glucose Regulation in Healthy, Normal-Weight Middle-Aged Men and Women." Metabolism. 56.12 (2007): 1729-34. Web. 4 Apr. 2013.
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April 15, 2013 | Filed Under Exercise | No Comments
Increasing your flexibility means reducing your risk of injury and boosting your performance. When we talk about flexibility, we talk about the range of motions your joints have and how far a muscle group can stretch. Improving both of these factors helps you work out more safely and effectively, and you can increase your flexibility with these simple exercises. Do them before and after you use your workout grips to stay safe and feel your best!
- Plié Reach
This move stretches your outer and inner thighs, back, arms and shoulders. Stand with your feet wider than your shoulders, turn your toes out and gently raise your arms above your head. Next, lower your arms in front of you as you squat deeply. Bring your elbows to your knees with your palms facing forward. Raise your right arm, then twist in the opposite direction as you raise your left arm. Return to the starting position, and do eight reps before you grab your fitness gloves.
- Low Lunge
Stretch your back, leg and butt muscles with this dynamic exercise. Lunge forward with your right leg until the floor and your thigh are parallel. Place both of your hands flat on the floor on either side of your right foot. Rotate your right shoulder back as you stretch your right arm up toward the ceiling. Slowly bring your hand back to the starting position, then repeat on the other side.
- Wrap Around
Great for the neck and shoulders, this exercise is particularly great for after a tough workout with your fitness gloves. Stand with your feet hip-width apart. Reach your left arm behind your back, then clasp your hands as you pull your right elbow back. Gently draw your shoulder blades together, then circle your head slowly. Repeat this exercise eight times to increase flexibility and finish off your workout.
What are your favorite flexibility-boosting moves? Tell us your secrets for getting limber in the comments section below!
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April 15, 2013 | Filed Under Nutrition | No Comments
Starting a diet plan is always a good idea, but the way you start it off can have an effect on your long-term success. Get started on the right foot and set yourself up for success by following these tips to kickstart your weekly diet plan.
- Identify your weight loss goals.
Think about how much you need to lose before you create a plan to do it. The amount of weight you must shed will affect your overall diet and exercise plan. For example, very overweight or obese people may benefit most from entering a weight loss center or formal program. People with less to lose can start by controlling their portion sizes to cut calories. Everyone can benefit from using their weightlifting gloves and gym gloves more often, so definitely make that part of your plan!
- Make a firm commitment.
Understanding why you want to lose weight will help you stick to your weekly diet plan. Before you start your diet, ask yourself these questions:
- Am I ready to lose weight?
- Where is my motivation coming from?
- How will I deal with lack of progress or occasional setbacks?
Rethink these questions every week before you start your diet, and write down the answers in case you need a little reminder come mid-week.
Make Meal and Exercise Plans
Plot out exactly what you will do each day to reach your weight loss goals. Calculate your daily caloric needs, then create a healthy, well-balanced meal plan for each day that will give you energy and fuel your workouts. Schedule time for exercising with your gym gloves on most days of the week to burn calories and build muscle.
How do you stay on track at the beginning of a diet? What are your best tips for kick-starting a weight loss plan? Share your advice with our readers in the comments below!
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April 11, 2013 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
For some, the most difficult part of exercising is doing the dreaded pull-ups, a long heart-pumping cardio class or a yoga pose that you don’t have the strength for yet. But for many, the hardest part is staying motivated. If you have been working out with your fitness grips for a significant amount of time, odds are that something in your life has caused an exercise set-back. It may have been a pulled hamstring, sprained ankle, career change, move or just a few bad days in a row.
Whatever it is, a setback can unleash your inner workout bully – you know, that little voice in your head that says “Skip your workout today!” or “Go ahead, swap your training gloves for a donut!”
It is hard to keep your head up in the face of this powerful bully, but you can conquer it and get back on track by following these tips.
- Use only positive words.
Instead of telling yourself “I can’t” all the time, tell yourself “I can.” Repeat it enough and you will start to believe it. Focus on the positive improvements you’ve made instead of your failures.
- Be patient.
The workout bully can make you feel like you are not seeing results fast enough. Change takes time, and there are no shortcuts to getting a healthier, slimmer or more toned body. The only way to do it is to eat a healthy diet and use your fitness grips most days of the week! Keep doing what you need to in order to reach your goals, and you will see progress.
- Trade your bully for a buddy.
Kick the workout bully out of your life and replace it with a workout buddy! Exercising with a friend or making connections with people who have similar interests as you is a great way to stay motivated. Choose a training partner whose goals vibe with yours, join a running group or sign up for a group fitness class at your gym.
What do you do when the workout bully starts giving you doubts? Share your best tips for staying motivated in the comments below!
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