November 28, 2011 | Filed Under Finding a Trainer, Workout Tips | No Comments
If you’re a workout beginner and you’re just getting started with your cardio or weight training regimen, there are few things you should know. First, congratulations! A healthy lifestyle is its own reward. You’re on your way to better muscle tone, a tighter, leaner body, better sleep, a sharper focus and a positive mental outlook that can help you tackle the challenges of your day.
Second, you may be wondering how much help you need. Some workout beginners aren’t sure how much they should take on by themselves, and they aren’t quite sure how to set realistic goals. You may be wondering how to get from where you are to where you want to be, and you may want to avoid setting goals that are too easy, which can prevent you from getting the most out of your workout, or too unreasonable, which can set you up for discouragement. You may also be looking over a room full of machines at the gym with no idea exactly where to start.
A professional trainer can definitely step in and act as your guide and motivator. He or she can assess your starting point and help you push yourself right up to and just past the limits of your comfort zone, so you can get the most out of your routine and take the most efficient path to the successful accomplishment of your goals. But if you can’t afford a trainer, don’t let that stop you from taking control over your health and your destiny. Use the internet and consult with others if you can about their own progress and experiences. And work out with a friend or social group. A close, supportive community can help you track your progress and provide the encouragement you need to stay motivated.
November 25, 2011 | Filed Under Nutrition, Workouts | No Comments
Getting and staying in shape requires dedication, patience, and a willingness to push the limits of your comfort zone. It also requires a few adjustments to your lifestyle that carry beyond the borders of the gym and the weight room. To get the most out of the time you spend weight training and working on your cardio health, you’ll also need to make sure you’re drinking plenty of water, getting adequate sleep and making wise decisions about healthy, balanced eating.
A healthy diet may represent a change from what you’re used to. But contrary to what fad diet proponents would have you believe, healthy eating isn’t terribly complicated. A few general basic tips can help keep you on track. First, green leafy vegetables are never a bad idea, and there’s no such thing as too many of them. We only have so much room in our stomachs each day, and the more you maximize vegetables as a component of your calorie intake, the healthier you’ll be.
But we can’t quite live on vegetables and fruit alone. We also need carbohydrates, proteins, and healthy fats. Find the best carbohydrates in whole grain breads and cereals, and get your protein from nuts, beans, eggs, and lean meats like fish and poultry.Try to keep your meat choices as lean as possible, since too much beef and pork can undermine the gains of an otherwise healthy diet. And make an effort to steer clear of sugary soft drinks, corn syrup and other calorie sources that offer energy but no nutritional value.
Balance your eating habits with your workout routine. Don’t skip breakfast, but if your workout goals include weight loss, recognize that you may feel hungry as you burn more calories during the day, and resist the urge to add those calories back into your routine by eating more.
November 23, 2011 | Filed Under Workout Routines | No Comments
When you decide to begin an exercise program, you’ll need to set clear workout goals, establish a plan, and choose habits that are reasonable and sustainable over the long term. Taking care of small details can help you make things easier on yourself. For example, if you know you’re a night owl who likes to sleep in, don’t schedule your first workout sessions at five in the morning. There’s no need to turn your life into some kind of boot camp if you don’t have to. And besides, habits that vary widely from your current ones will be easier to abandon during episodes of stress or boredom. Don’t give yourself an easy way out or a simple justification for dropping your program. If you’re a night owl, work out in the evenings. If you’re sociable and don’t like to be alone, don’t attempt a five mile run every day without a partner to talk to.
You’ll also want to make things easier on yourself by choosing the right gear. Exercise feels great, but it feels even better when your shoes don’t pinch and your hands are protected from weight room-induced blisters and abrasions. Choose clothing that wicks away moisture and doesn’t constrict, ride up, or hang loose. If you work out outdoors, wear layers during the winter. In the summertime, wear light colored natural fibers like cotton, and carry plenty of water.
For indoor routines and weightlifting, Gripads can make a world of difference. Try to end your routine on a high note, looking good and feeling great. At the end of your session, you should be refreshed, breathing evenly, and most important, free of pain. If your hands are chapped, blistered, or scraped, try Gripads next time. You shouldn’t leave the gym thinking about your sore palms. Instead, you should be ready to face the rest of your day and looking forward to hitting the weights again tomorrow.
November 19, 2011 | Filed Under Gear, Motivation, Workout Tips | No Comments
Aside from quitting smoking, there are few ordinary challenges that rival the difficulty of successfully losing weight. When you decide to make a go of getting in shape, the obstacles ahead can seem insurmountable, especially at first, and every day thousands of people all over the world struggle to gain even the smallest inch of ground in this ongoing battle.
But every single day, all over the world, millions of people succeed. And most of those people don’t have access to anything you don’t have. With determination, patience, and a few simple, inexpensive tools, you can make astonishing changes to your body, no matter who you are and no matter your starting point. And simple gear isn’t hard to find. You don’t need a fancy gym. If you have a sidewalk, living room, or even a tiny patch of floor, you can exercise. And you don’t need expensive weights. As long as you can maintain a safe grip, almost any suitably heavy object, like a milk container filed with sand, can help you develop and improve your muscle tone. The only thing you need to make you home into a weight room is a little ingenuity and safe pads to maintain your grip and protect your hands.
Take a walk outside. If you stay alert, keep safety in mind, and choose your route wisely, any street can be a walking or jogging path. Investigate your local area for well-maintained parks, and if you have an exercise trail with simple workout equipment like pull up bars, don’t let it go to waste. Take your Gripads with you and make the most of the crisp fall weather. Back at home, consider push-ups, crunches and simple dumbbell workouts that don’t require anything but your Gripads and a pair of five pound weights.
November 16, 2011 | Filed Under Gear, Workout Routines | No Comments
No matter how great your routine may be, and how many rewards and benefits it’s provided over the years, there may come a day when you realize it’s time to shake things up a bit and make a few changes. You may want to move from an indoor to an outdoor routine or vice versa. You may want to start targeting neglected areas of the body. Or you may just be getting a little bit bored and losing sight of the motivation that got you started in the first place.
Your gear may also need a refreshing turnover now and then. Sometimes your favorite workout clothes and gear can break, tear or wear out. When that happens, you have no choice but to make replacements. But there are other times when you simply realize that the same old item just isn’t working as hard for you as it once did. Shoes, for example, need to be replaced frequently by serious runners even when they seem to be in excellent shape. If you’ve been running moderate to long distances in the same pair of shoes for more than a year, it may be time for a replacement pair. Your resistance training gear may need the same kind of shake up now and then. Take a close, objective look at your old gloves. They may have served you loyally for a long time, but gloves collect sweat, mildew and bacteria over time. And even when you wash them frequently, they still wear out and wear thin and eventually fail to provide the durable protection you need to get the most out of your workout.
If you’re ready for a change, try Gripads. These super tough, super-soft neoprene pads are fun to use, long lasting, and perfect for high intensity workouts. They slip on easily and, unlike gloves, they wick away moisture and don’t breed bacteria or mildew.
November 13, 2011 | Filed Under Exercise | No Comments
All across the country, millions of people are waking up to the fact that protecting your health doesn’t just mean living longer. It means looking great, feeling great, and having the energy to do the things you love with the people who matter most. Working out tones your body, improves your posture, regulates your sleep, and can even spring you out of a prison of negativity and blue moods. Combined with healthy eating and plenty of water, exercise can help you relax, sharpen your focus, and even expand your social life.
These things happen with time. The lasting effects of an exercise regimen begin to show only after you’ve had the patience to stay at it for a while. But there is one powerful effect that begins to show up right away: Exercise feels great. At the end of even one workout session, endorphins are released that flood us with a sense of well-being and accomplishment. Our problems take a few steps back and we feel focused and ready to face the day.
Finding time to exercise can be a challenge, and maintaining a routine that pushes us beyond our comfort zone can sometimes seem like a hassle. But if we accept the challenge get over those minor obstacles, the feeling of reward can keep us coming back. If you’re ready to get up, get outside and get moving, don’t let little things get in the way. Choose a time during the day that’s easy for you, and don’t fuss too much over your gear. A good pair of shoes plus comfortable clothes made of natural fibers will perfectly suffice for your cardio workouts. And for you resistance training routine, you really don’t need much: just a few simple weights (or an accessible gym), and something to protect your hands. So don’t wait. You deserve a healthy body and a healthy lifestyle. Get out there and make it happen!
November 10, 2011 | Filed Under Hand Protection, Workouts | No Comments
You’ve been making the most of your cardio routine for a while now, and you’ve recently added a session of weight training a few times a week. You’ve seen how even short weight training sets can have a noticeable impact on your muscle tone, your strength, and your overall motivation. You’re ready to take your workout to the next level.
Awesome! And congratulations. Your determination and willingness to push the limits of your comfort zone will definitely pay off. But bear a few things in mind before you take your resistance training routine up a notch. First, make sure you have enough supervision and guidance to keep your technique on track and help you avoid injuries. If you’re lifting weights without the benefit of a machine, keep safety in mind and always lift with a spotter.
And second, you’ll need to protect your hands. Sessions of just a few reps a few times a week won’t cause problems, but if you plan to lift with intensity, you’ll need to place a layer of protection between your palms and the rough surfaces of bars, ropes and equipment. Otherwise you’ll end up with blisters and abrasions that can really hurt and will certainly drain your motivation.
Gloves are fine, but gloves can restrict your natural movement and can prevent your skin from breathing properly. Gripads make a great alternative to gloves, since they only cover the surface of your palm, allowing the rest of your hand to breathe and move naturally. Gripads place a soft, super-tough neoprene layer between your palms and rough surfaces. And while you focus on your goals and technique, your Gripads work just as hard as you do, wicking away moisture and protecting your skin from abrasions, blisters, and bacteria. Gear up, slide on a pair of Gripads, and get moving!
November 4, 2011 | Filed Under Motivation, Workout Routines | No Comments
Moving, changing jobs, or having a new baby can turn your daily schedule upside down in an instant. In just one day, everything can change. Tasks and goals that used to fall at the top of the priority list can suddenly drop to last place, if they stay on the list at all.It’s perfectly natural to lose touch with a passion or hobby after a major life change. Many of us can think of something that once held our devoted attention—roller derby, rock climbing, skydiving—and now years have passed since the last time we took a class, entered a race, or broke out our climbing gear.
But there are a few things that should never be allowed to slip away because the currents of our lives have shifted. Drop the softball team or the gardening club when you need to, but there’s never a time to drift away from healthy eating, and there’s never a time to drift away from exercise. If your life has changed and you no longer have access to your old gym or your bygone days of ample free time, try these tips:
1.Take care of it now.
Habits are tough to break. So before your new routine hardens around you, work in some workout time. Even if it seems impossible, wedge it in. The more you wedge now, the easier the wedging will be later on and the more reasonable it will seem to make time for such an otherwise low priority.
2.Make it easy on yourself.
If the old gym is gone, find a new one even closer to home. And make sure you have the best possible gear. Invest in good shoes, clothes, and Gripads, and working out will be a pleasure, not a chore.
3.Shift your routine.
Maybe you used to lift heavier weights, run longer distances, or stay in the gym for an hour each day. And maybe you just can’t do that anymore. That’s fine, just don’t stop altogether. Even if your workout represents only a shadow of what it once was, keep going. Stay in touch with your body and work within your current limitations. Just keep working.
November 3, 2011 | Filed Under Workout Goals, Workout Routines | No Comments
If you’ve been working out at the same place, at the same time of day, using the same basic routine for a long time, you may have settled into a comfortable relationship with a healthy habit. That’s good news, and there’s nothing wrong with turning exercise into a regularly scheduled part of an ordinary day. But in the interest of keeping your body healthy and your motivation intact, it might be time to change your routine if you fall into any of these categories:
If you’re bored with the gym and you’re beginning to drag your feet and give less than 100 percent, change your workout before you start finding reasons not to go. Maybe it’s time to get out of the gym altogether for a little while. Consider going running in a park or using the equipment on an outdoor fitness trail. (Take your Gripads—they work just as well outdoors!)
2.Your abs are in perfect shape. But you aren’t sure about the rest of you.
An unvarying routine can certainly sculpt one targeted area of your body to near perfection, but you don’t live in just one part of your body. You live in the whole thing. It may be time to let the triceps go for a while and focus new energy on your obliques or quads.
3.Your routine hasn’t changed for more than a year.
If your routine has been the same for twelve months or longer, it’s time for a new one. If you aren’t sure where to go from here, have a conversation with a personal trainer and let her know what you’ve been doing so she can move you to the next level.
4.You need new partners.
Your workout buddies can be helpful when it comes to getting you on track, but at some point, your goals and plans may begin to diverge from those of your partners. If a relationship is holding back your progress, try to find a way to stay in touch for some parts of your routine while diverging in others. And remember, you can still stay friends outside of the gym.
November 1, 2011 | Filed Under Hand Protection, Workout Routines | No Comments
The best motivation and the fanciest, most expensive gym in the world won’t help you stay on track to your workout goals if improper gear stands in your way. If your routine involves resistance training, machines, or weightlifting, you’ll need to find a reliable way to protect your hands from rough surfaces, and you’ll need to maintain your grip when sweat builds up and equipment gets slippery. The wrong hand protection can interfere with your grip, causing you to drop heavy bars or lose your technique. Improper protection can also restrict your range of motion, cause blisters and other injuries, and make your hands feel sweaty, confined and uncomfortable.
Chalk can keep you from slipping, but chalk is messy and can’t protect you from injuries or germs left on equipment by other users. Gloves are fine, but they keep your skin from breathing in a natural way. Sweat can build up inside and form a breeding ground for mildew and bacteria, and after a while, even frequently washed gloves can wear out, get moldy, or begin to stink.
The answer? Gripads! The Gripad is a lightweight, extremely durable, neoprene-lined pad that helps you grasp and hold slippery bars so you can focus on your reps and technique, not your grip. The neoprene layer wicks moisture and sweat away from your palms, which keeps your hands dry, cool and comfortable as you work out. And since the Gripad doesn’t cover your whole hand, your skin can breathe easily and your range of motion isn’t compromised. Once you slip on a Gripad, you forget it’s there. But during your entire routine, the Gripad works as hard as you do, keeping your palms protected from rough surfaces while you keep your mind on your goals. Gripads are a clean, wear-resistant, lightweight solution that can outlast even the toughest workout session. Try a pair today, and you may never wear gloves again.