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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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 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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April 8, 2013 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
Many gym-goers and athletes push themselves on empty stomachs because they mistakenly believe they will burn more fat. It is a common myth – but that’s all it is: a myth. Instead of swapping breakfast for your fitness grips, read on to discover the truth about working out on an empty stomach.
Over the last ten years, popular fitness books and countless trainers have perpetuated the myth that working out an empty stomach forces the body to use fat stores for fuel instead of carbohydrates made available thanks to a pre-workout snack or meal.
Although the myth seems to jive with conventional wisdom, research shows that using your gym gloves on an empty stomach does not lead to any benefits and may actually work against you.
Regardless of whether or not you eat before exercise, the body burns roughly the same amount of fat. However, you are likely to lose more muscle if you break a sweat in a depleted state. Without adding fuel to aid the workout, your overall calorie burn and exercise intensity will be reduced.
If you do snack or eat a meal before exercising, you will burn fat instead of muscle, leaving you with a higher calorie burn and more energy while you are using your fitness grips.
A study published in the September 2002 issue of the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism revealed another benefit from eating before working out: Women who ate 45 grams of carbs prior to hitting the gym ate less throughout the rest of the day.
The Bottom Line
Working out on an empty stomach is a bad idea. To boost your energy and perform your best, eat something about 30 minutes before you exercise, like a protein shake or yogurt topped with fresh berries.
 Melby, CL, K.L. Osterberg, A. Resch, B. Davy, S. Johnson and K. Davy, “Effect of carbohydrate ingestion during exercise on post-exercise substrate oxidation and energy intake.” International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism. 12. 3. (2002): 294-309. Web. 14 March 2013.
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March 29, 2013 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
In the past, no one ever asked how long children should workout because most kids ventured out and played hard every day. They built forts, played kickball, and climbed trees until the streetlights came on. Today’s kids, however, are more likely to be found in front of a video game or computer screen than playing pick-up baseball in the park. So what is the right amount of exercise for kids? The answer depends on your child’s age.
Children Under Five
Young children who can walk without assistance should be active each day for a minimum of three hours. This activity should be spread throughout the day and can take place indoors or out.
To encourage activity in your young child or toddler:
- Go to a playground where he or she can run, jump or climb.
- Play tag in your backyard.
- Keep the garage stocked with riding toys, balls and a tricycle.
- Jump in piles of leaves together in autumn.
- Build snowmen and make snow angels in winter.
- Walk to the supermarket or library together. Take your toddler out of the stroller for a few minutes of the journey.
- Take the stairs together instead of the escalator.
- Limit your child’s TV time to establish healthier habits later in life.
- Sign up for a sports league, tumbling class or other activity with children.
- Set a good example by using your gym gloves or fitness gloves often at home, letting your toddler see you being active or taking a “Mommy and Me” type class together.
Children & Young Adults Aged 5-18
Children and young people in this age group should get at least one hour of aerobic exercise each day.
The hour should include a mix of:
- vigorous-intensity activities, like running, gymnastics, martial arts, riding a bike on hilly ground or at a fast speed, energetic dancing or aerobics, and
- moderate-intensity activities, such as walking to school, rollerblading, skateboarding or playing on the playground.
Older kids and teens should also incorporate strength-building activities into their workouts. Get gym gloves for the whole family, then encourage your kids to build strength by doing activities like resistance exercises, rock climbing, playing tug-of-war or doing push-ups. Be sure not to push kids under 18 to workout like an adult; it can lead to injury and stunt proper growth among other health issues. Remember, always let kids be kids.
How do you encourage your kids to be more active? Share your best tips for getting fit as a family with our readers in the comments section below.
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January 11, 2013 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
For many people, motivation to get and stay fit comes in waves. It is particularly powerful around New Year’s, when the gyms are packed with resolute newbies hoping to sweat away their holiday pounds. It may wane in the following winter months, then return again during swimsuit season. If your attitude and motivation toward exercising fluctuates, adopt these tips today to stay on track for a lifetime of fitness.
- Make a Lifestyle Change
Instead of working out to lose a few pounds or meet some other short-term goal, think of exercise as part of a lifelong commitment to good health. Short-term goals are great motivators, but only in the short-term.
- Try Something New
When you are in a slump, add a new activity to make your routine more exciting. Grab a pair of GRIPAD gym gloves and lift weights, join a kickball league or finally try water polo. Looking forward to a new challenge will help you stay motivated.
- Track Your Goals
Setting and meeting goals is a major part of long-term fitness success. Write down your aspirations and create concrete plans to meet them in an Exercise Journal. Track your progress, reward yourself when you meet your goals, then set new ones and repeat the process.
- Exercise Safely
Improper form or using the wrong type of gear can cause injury and derail your entire fitness plan. Stay safe by learning the proper form and always using the right kind of gear, like GRIPAD workout gloves, moisture-wicking clothing and supportive shoes.
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December 21, 2012 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
Many of us who work out often reach plateaus and get stuck there. This can result in boredom, slacking off, or even giving up entirely. Increasing your stamina is the key to maintaining challenging workouts and pushing past plateaus. These simple workouts can help boost your endurance and keep you going through future challenges.
- Increase Your Intensity
High intensity interval training (HIIT) improves stamina through quick bouts of intense exercise. A 2005 study concluded that people who do sprint intervals for just two weeks can double their endurance capacity compared to people who do not do HIIT. To boost your stamina, complement your regular training with physically demanding plyometric routines, or sprint intervals around the track.
- Add Strength Training
Variation is an important component of endurance training. Resistance training strengthens the ligaments, muscles, tendons and bones, improves overall fitness and increases stamina. Mix up your aerobic exercise with bodyweight exercises, dumbbells or kettlebells to boost your stamina. Maximize your results by using GRIPAD fitness gloves every time you hit the gym. GRIPAD weight lifting grips minimize problems like blisters, odor, sweat and calluses so you can focus on working out and increasing your stamina.
- Work on Your Weaknesses
Instead of shying away from your weaknesses, confront them head on. Sticking to your fitness niche is a fast path to plateauing, and pushing yourself is one of the best ways to increase your endurance. Create a new personal best by focusing on what challenges you.
- Build Up Slowly
Building stamina takes time, and pushing yourself too hard too fast will only lead to frustration and injury. Set small, manageable goals each week to safely and slowly boost your endurance. For example, extend your workout time by 10 percent each week or increase your run by one mile. Once you meet a goal, set a new one and continue to challenge yourself.
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December 15, 2012 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
Between the family dinners, cocktail parties and office treats, it is easy to overindulge in pumpkin pie, eggnog, cookies, cake and other unhealthy but delectable treats. Ramp up your fitness routine and shed those extra holiday pounds with these easy workout tips.
- Intense Cardio
Intense cardio workouts are a key component of boosting your metabolism and losing weight. Break a sweat at a cardio kickboxing or dance class, run at a challenging speed or take up spinning. Your goal should be to keep your heart rate up and be so out of breath you can’t carry on a conversation.
- Interval Training
High impact interval training (HIIT) burns lots of calories in a short period of time because it relies on quick bursts of intense movement. Instead of biking or running at a moderate speed for an hour, mix it up by alternating short, all-out sprints with brief periods of active recovery.
- Circuit Training
This type of exercise pairs the high intensity of cardio with the muscle-building of strength training. Building muscle is a key to weight loss, and strength training can help you burn as much fat as cardio. To shed those extra holiday pounds and look lean in the New Year, add bodyweight or free weight exercises to your routine. Don’t forget to use GRIPAD weightlifting gloves to maximize your effort. When you use GRIPAD weight lifting grips, you won’t be sidetracked by blisters, calluses or hand sweat. Instead, you can focus on getting a great workout and losing that holiday weight.
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December 1, 2012 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
While working out can help you achieve your fitness goals, overdoing it can actually lead you to the path of self-destruction – literally. Just like everything else in life, too much of a good thing, even a healthy workout routine, can have a negative effect. In this case, too much exercise can actually lead to increased body fat accumulation.
So, how do you know if you are working out too much? Are there any telltale signs that can help you determine when it’s time to hit the brakes? Well, fortunately, there are. Here are some warning signs that can help you determine if you’re headed for a disastrous workout overload:
- Delayed recovery time. Do your muscles feel sore for days on end after your workout? If they do, then your body is telling you to slow it down a bit. Your muscles need some rest, too, you know.
- Mood swings. Overexertion commonly leads to anger, anxiety, confusion, depression and irritability. Are you exhibiting these signs? If you are, then you may need to take a much needed break.
- Fatigue. Are you feeling weak and lack the energy to do the things you’ve always done? If you are, then it’s time to take things slowly.
- Changes in appetite. A diminished appetite coupled with an increased craving for sugar and caffeine is a clear indication of workout overload.
- Weakened immune system. Pushing way past your limit when your body is giving clear signals that it needs to take a break will put your health at risk. It can weaken your immune system and make you susceptible to injuries and chronic inflammation.
Keep in mind that a healthy workout can help you reach your fitness goals, but overdoing it will never do you any good. Have you ever pushed yourself too far? Please share your insights in the comments section.
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November 20, 2012 | Filed Under Exercise, Healthy Lifestyle, Stretching, Tips for Beginners, Workout Tips, Workouts | No Comments
Learn how to keep injuries at bay while working out.
While working out in the gym can help you get in better shape, doing the wrong things can inevitably lead to unwanted injuries. Since no one wants to get hurt while trying to tone their thighs, flatten their belly or build muscle, you need to know the most common ways you can injure yourself so that you can effectively prevent making these mistakes. So, what are the easiest ways to turn your healthy workout into a disaster? Here are some of them:
- Skipping your warm up. It may be tempting to skip the warm up part of your routine and dive head-on into your workout, especially when you’re pressed for time. Well, to tell you the truth, you are putting yourself in harm’s way if you choose to do this. Keep in mind that warm up exercises are there for a reason. They work by preparing your mind and body for the task ahead and by improving the elasticity of your muscles to prevent injuries. This is what a healthy workout is all about.
- Not using the proper form. Using bad form not only compromises your workout, it also puts you at a greater risk for injury. So, whether you are doing cardio workouts or weight training exercises, you need to use the proper form at all times. When lifting weights, keep your back straight when bending at the hips, don’t lock the joints or bend your knees excessively, and keep your head and neck as still as possible. Also, consider using proper fitness gloves since they provide additional comfort as you perform these muscle building exercises.
- Going past your limit. To get the most benefits from a healthy workout, you need to know your limits. Don’t try to make up for lost time by overexerting yourself. This won’t do you any good and may cause harmful strain to muscles and tendons that can lead to pulls, tears, or snaps, not to mention dehydration and nutrient deficiencies.
- Lifting excessively heavy weights. This can increase your risk of straining your muscles and/or injuring your back, shoulders and knees. Weight training is not a sprint, but rather a marathon. You need to work your way up to heavier weights in a gradual manner to build true strength and endurance.
- Doing the same routine. Doing the same exercises over and over again can lead to overuse injury so consider varying your workout. Try to modify your moves, or work only certain muscle on alternate days, or revamp your total workout routine. Not only will it prevent boredom, but also prevent overuse injuries.
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October 31, 2012 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
The rotator cuffs are a set of four slender muscles that curve around the joint connecting the shoulder to the upper arm. These four muscles extend from the collar bone and join at the outmost point of the shoulder like the arms of a starfish, and while they provide the shoulder with a wide range of motion, they’re also very delicate. A simple twist, jerk, or hyperextension in the wrong direction can seriously injure these muscles and sideline an athlete for an entire season or longer. So can a stressful repetitive motion that goes uncorrected. So how can you protect your rotator cuffs while you work out? Here are a few tips.
Protect Your Rotator Cuffs from Injury
- Choose the right weight lifting gloves. How can fitness gloves protect your shoulders? The answer is simple: Slip-proof workout gloves provide a tighter grip on heavy workout equipment, and a tighter grip means better control.
- Skip workout moves or machines that raise your arms overhead past the level of your ears. Your fitness gloves can’t help you if you overextend the shoulder voluntarily.
- When reaching your arms out to your sides, keep both arms at or in front of your body plane. Imagine your back is pressed against a wall. Your arms need to stop when they reach the wall.
- Stop any workout move if you feel tingling, numbness, or pinching in the shoulder area. Rotator cuff injuries often happen when athletes try to power through pain and only increase the damage caused by a tear or pinched nerve.
- Make sure all of your gear—not just your workout gloves—is in a good condition and appropriate for the workout session ahead. Choose the right shoes and clothes, and don’t overload weight machines. Always lift heavy weights with a spotter.
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October 29, 2012 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
You have everything you need for a successful workout plan—you’re motivated, you’ve set aside time each day for both cardio and resistance training, and your neoprene GRIPAD® fitness gloves go with you every time you head to the gym. But something isn’t right. No matter how hard you seem to be working, you’re just not getting the results you need. There’s nothing wrong with your fitness gloves, but there may be something wrong with another aspect of your workout plan…your sleep habits.
Without 6-9 hours of sleep every night, stress hormones begin to circulate in our bloodstream that can interfere with everything from blood pressure, to blood sugar regulation, to metabolism. Keep these considerations in mind before you decide to keep burning the midnight oil.
Sleep and Your Workout
- How much is best? Some of us are “long sleepers” who need 9 hours of sleep every night in order to stay healthyand some of us only need 6. We don’t get to choose which category we fall into, though, so if you were born a long sleeper, 6 hours simply won’t be enough, no matter how well this schedule may work for someone else. Our body doesn’t go into its regenerative phase until it reaches the deep REM sleep cycle. Many skip this stage entirely, or allow it to be disrupted by bathroom breaks or electronics.
- Electronic Pollution. Keep TV, computers, other electronics and clutter out of your bedroom. Store your workout gloves and other gear in a closet and keep your sleeping area neat and stress free. Your bedroom should be a peaceful, calm space that supports a restful night’s sleep, and even the smallest light or beep from a nearby gadget can disrupt your body.
- Environment. In addition to no clutter and gadgets, the darker the room the better. Make sure you have curtains that block out as much light as possible. Biologically, our bodies are designed to release chemicals that wake us up when there is light and to make us sleepy when the day comes to an end. Ever since electric light, we’ve tried to fool our bodies into believing there’s a few more hours of light in the day, but they know best and fight back in their own way to try to restore balance. That can translate to falling asleep in the middle of the day, waking up constantly in the middle of the night, or not being able to fall asleep at all.
- Nutrition. If you consumer caffeine, limit it to very small amounts and only in the morning, as the effects can last many hours and disrupt sleep by confusing the body’s natural sleep chemicals. Stop all beverages about 2 hours before bed to prevent bathroom trips during the night, and do your best not to eat past 8pm. Not only will this help you sleep better, but it will also prevent unwanted pounds that can result from food eaten too close to bedtime and therefore is stored in the body instead of being burned off as energy.
- Routine, routine, routine. Don’t wait until you’re tired to go to bed. Establish a regular bedtime and stick with it. Same goes for a waking time. The human body is a natural clock, and keeping yourself to a routine promotes health and longevity. Establish a “wind down” period. Turn off all electronics at least 30 minutes before going to bed and listen to some relaxing music or read a book (preferably not horror or suspense thriller) to prepare your brain for sleep.
Your working time and socializing time are sacred, so why shouldn’t you give the same respect to your sleep time? If you do, you’ll see the payoff in better overall health and better results at the gym.
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October 8, 2012 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
It’s no secret that most of us come out of hibernation at the end of the winter carrying a few more pounds than we had during the late summer and fall. This fluctuation probably made sense at an earlier stage in our evolution, but these days, a cycle of gaining and losing weight as the seasons change isn’t necessary or very healthy, and it leaves us with an uphill climb every spring that gets steeper as we age. It’s better to give our bodies a break and make life easier for our metabolic systems by staying in relatively steady shape all year long. Here are few winter workout tips that can help.
Stay in Shape and Keep Up with Winter Workouts
- Seasonal Temptations. It’s a good idea to avoid the seasonal habits and obstacles that get us into trouble in the first place. If you know you’ll be heading out to holiday parties loaded with rich, unhealthy food, eat some oatmeal or an apple before you go so you won’t be likely to overindulge.
- Move your workout indoors before the cold weather forces you to decide between working out inside or not working out at all. Plan to shift your regular running route onto a treadmill or attend the gym at an easier hour than five am. Prepare yourself by stocking up on winter gear—running pants, outer wear, gloves, etc.
- Stay in touch with your partners and workout friends and keep each other moving. Don’t lose touch or drop your routine when the cold and busy schedules get in the way.
- Make sure your stay hydrated. Sweat happens in the winter just as it does in the summer time. Winter workouts are more pleasant when they don’t dry us out or give us dehydration headaches, and pleasant workouts are easier to maintain.
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October 3, 2012 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
Gym fees can be expensive. And the cost of a membership may be only one of the many reasons you’ve decided that the local gym won’t be playing a role in your workout routine. Shared equipment can be “germy”, locations and parking can be inconvenient, and sometimes the culture of a gym environment just doesn’t suit your personality.
If your gym is far away, unpleasant, or cost prohibitive, don’t forego your workout plans altogether. Just try these popular alternatives to gym memberships.
- The YMCA swimming pool. Just using the pool is much less expensive than a full membership, and if you attend at the right time during a quiet weekday, you can sometimes have the entire pool all to yourself!
- Get outta here! If you have sidewalks or safe streets near where you live, who needs a treadmill or stationary bike? Just tie on a sturdy pair of running shoes—or grab your bike– and head out the door for a ride or hike.
- Parks. Does your local park have a fitness trail? Investigate before you answer. Sometimes trails with fitness equipment aren’t obvious, and they’re almost never as crowded, well-advertised, or as well-used as they should be.
- Your living room. In the internet age, there’s almost no fitness activity or workout routine you can’t simply bring into the living room with you via your TV or computer screen. And you don’t need fancy weights or equipment. Just a pair of durable GRIPAD®s and some heavy objects with secure handles will do. Start by lifting and maneuvering your own body weight using simple leverage exercises like sit ups and push-ups. When you’re ready, you can take your living room workout to the next level with resistance bands and suspension training straps.
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July 27, 2012 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
To attain great results (or any results) from a workout plan, we need patience. And we need to be willing to commit to a workout routine long enough for two things to happen:
- If all goes well, our workout plan will eventually become an ingrained habit, and healthy habits—just like unhealthy ones—are not as easy to break. So when we begin a workout routine, we don’t need to look far into the future and make a fifty year commitment at a single bound. That’s asking too much. We just need to look toward a future when working out will come as naturally as brushing our teeth before bed.
- Exercise feels great, both mentally and physically. But it doesn’t always seem that way at the beginning. Maintain your exercise plan long enough to start feeling the results, including post workout euphoria and the rush of trying on new clothes after dropping a few pounds. From that point forward, things will get easier.
In the meantime, keep these simple workout tips in mind to maintain your motivation:
- Look for small rewards and celebrate them. You lost two pounds? Fantastic! Don’t let anyone laugh or take away your small victories. Each success builds on the last.
- Surround yourself with support. Choose workout partners who make you feel encouraged, and give back the same energy. If you can’t find a supportive group, work out on your own until you find your feet.
- Choose music and gear that feel great and don’t stand in your way. Wear comfortable, breathable clothing, protect your hands with Gripads, and choose your workout playlist with care. Small things can have a big impact on your progress.
- Finally, be proud of the challenges you face and willingness to overcome them. It isn’t easy to push yourself to your physical limits, but remember: you’re doing the right thing, and you’re doing it for the right reasons.
July 12, 2012 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
When most of us were children in PE class, we were taught a basic principle that seemed unassailable at the time: Stretching before physical activity is good. It warms up the muscles, increases circulation, and improves our range of motion so we can perform better. With that idea in mind, we would line up to touch our toes before heading off to an intense session of dodgeball or rope climbing.
But exercise science has come a long way since then. We’ve since learned that while stretching does, in fact, organize and align the muscle fibers, and this does have the effect of improving circulation and nutrient delivery, there’s more to an effective stretching routine that we once thought. Here are a few stretching-related workout tips that experts now recommend.
A Simple Guide to Effective Stretching: Workout Tips
- Static stretching, or stretching performed while standing or lying in place, may actually reduce our muscle strength and diminish our abilities for a full 30 minutes afterward. Experts are still trying to determine what causes this effect.
- Instead of static stretching, try stretches that happen while the body is in vigorous motion, since these moves tend to bring better results. Keep your knee straight and kick your left leg out in front of you as high as you can, then your right leg. Then crawl across the gym floor, staying as low to the ground as you can.
- Before you begin your dynamic stretching exercises, warm up with a light jog or ten minutes of mild aerobic activity. Your heart rate should be noticeably elevated before you begin the first stretch.
- Once you’ve warmed up, then done a few dynamic stretching moves, begin your activity right away. A pause or extended period of stillness can actually reduce the benefits of the stretch, and may not provide your muscles with adequate heat, circulation, or protection from injury.
June 21, 2012 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
For both women and men, a healthy workout begins with motivation, a plan, the right gear, and a supportive lifestyle. Are you trying to get in shape in time for beach season? Are you looking for ways to build strength and improve your athletic performance? Maybe you just want to lose a few pounds or add muscle volume to your chest and arms. Consider these goal-specific workout tips.
Workout Tips: Building Muscle Volume
If you want big muscles, lean toward heavier weights with fewer reps. Lift till you reach the point of failure, take a two second break, and grab the weights again. Consult a trainer for area-specific body sculpting tips.
Workout Tips: Slimming Down
Remember that weight loss is a function of caloric intake versus caloric output. Choose workout moves that elevate your heart rate and keep it elevated. Meanwhile, skip the soda, processed foods and red meat, and increase your intake of water, green vegetables and colorful fruits.
Workout Tips: Building Strength
To gain strength in a specific muscle group, focus on lower weights and higher reps. Make the most of your technique and keep the tension focused within targeted muscle areas as you complete each move. For workout tips and helpful moves specific to your sport, consult with your coach or trainer.
Workout Tips: Getting Healthy
Any amount of exercise during the day can reduce your risk of a cascade of diseases like diabetes, cancer, high blood pressure, and even depression. All of us should be moving in a way that elevates our heart rate for at least fifteen minutes every day. If you aren’t quite there yet, start small and work your way up. Just don’t stop moving. For a healthy workout, stay balanced by blending cardio activities with resistance training.
June 18, 2012 | Filed Under Workout Goals, Workout Tips | No Comments
If resistance training plays a strong role in your workout routine, it’s a good idea to make sure your training goals are clear. Muscle tissue responds differently to different exercises at various levels of intensity, and once you clarify your goals, you can choose the exercises (and even the nutrition plan) that can help you get where you need to be. Are you trying to build muscle strength? Or do you care more about volume and size? Here are a few workout tips that can be applied to specific muscle building goals.
Muscle Building Workout Goals
For a muscle building plan focused on size and mass, rely on the burn-down or drop set lifting approach. This means lifting heavier weights at lower reps. The fastest muscle building strategy comes from lifting until you reach the point of failure, or until you’re entirely unable to continue. After a short pause, continue until you reach the failure point again.
Strength Building Workout Goals
If you’re trying to increase muscle strength and agility and you don’t care much about getting big, focus on lower weights and more reps. Make sure you’re creating resistance in the rails, or supporting small muscle groups that contribute to core stability, balance, and speed. Building muscle strength can be great for your athletic performance, but if you pursue this method, you may never get the bulky, muscular look of a professional body builder.
For both types of muscle building goals, remember to get plenty of sleep, stay hydrated (choose juice or water), and eat several servings a day of lean protein. Legumes, fish, poultry, eggs and nuts can support the muscle building process and help your muscle tissue recover from the miniscule damage caused by high intensity resistance training.
June 16, 2012 | Filed Under Workout Tips | No Comments
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Enthusiasm, high energy, and a willingness to push past your limits can be great attributes to bring to an effective workout session. But careless mistakes and sloppy technique can lead to slower results, and can sometimes cause injuries that can send us to the sidelines. A few core weightlifting tips and guidelines can help you find ways to safely channel your energy and get the strength-building impact you’re looking for.
Weightlifting Tips for a Safe and Effective Workout
- Protect Your Rotator Cuffs
The rotator cuffs are the small muscles that curve around the joint between our collarbone and upper arm. These muscles allow the shoulder to rotate in every direction, but they can easily become damaged, and the ligaments and nerves connected to them can be pinched by our bones as we move, which can lead to pain and other problems. For an effective healthy workout of the shoulder area, keep your arms in front of the level of your ears during flies and overhead lifts. Keep your arms from moving too high or too far back behind you, and stop doing any move if you feel tingling or numbness in the shoulder area.
- Protect Your Lower Back
As with your shoulders, don’t place your lower back in any high stress position that feels unnatural or causes pinching, tingling, pain or numbness. Stop immediately if you feel any of these things. Don’t twist or jerk your lower back, and try to build a strong core to protect this sensitive area and provide 24 hour support to the spine.
- Protect Your Knees
As our legs get stronger and our bodies become heavier, our knee joints stay the same size. So large heavy bodies have more power to tax, strain and injure the sensitive ligaments and tendons that allow our knees to function. For a safe, healthy workout that includes squats or lunges, don’t allow your knees to move further forward than your toes.