Debunking the Myth of Spot Reduction
Do you ever wonder how to shrink the fat on your thighs or reduce the flab on the back of your arms? Ever wake and up and dream about wearing your favorite pants from the glory days of college? Well, short of plastic surgery, there is no way to simply eliminate certain problem areas.
The reality is that slimming your figure is not a simple task. In order to lose weight in one spot, you must be willing to work your entire body. So, the women who want thinner hips and the men who seek to shed the spare tire must attack the body as a whole. You must lift each body part, and to see the best gains I advocate performing more multi-joint exercises such as bench presses, rows, squats and lunges.
These types of exercises challenge the cardiovascular system as well as stimulating the muscles because they require a lot of effort and force the heart to work harder. Another great trick to speed metabolism during lifting workouts is to steadily reduce your rest periods. This is an advanced technique and should be changed according to perceived exertion levels, experience and training goals.
You can perform all the crunches and inner/outer thigh lifts you want, but it takes more to see the desired results. First, you must perform a consistent progressive strength training program that calls for you to work each body part twice per week. Next, you must engage in a moderate amount of aerobic exercise to aid in boosting metabolism. Finally, you need to follow a sound eating plan (not necessarily a diet). With hard work and consistency, you will begin to see positive changes.
With that said, you can toss away all those exercise tapes or gadgets that promise quick fixes or spot reduction. The best approach is developing a sound nutritional and fitness plan with the intent of making long-term lifestyle changes. This philosophy, albeit slower and more difficult, will deliver permanent results and prevent you from feeling disappointment with unfulfilled claims from fraudulent fitness marketers today.
See how these five proven fitness tips will change your figure in just 3 months:
1. Perform strength training circuits for 30-40 minutes. Consider a circuit as 3 different exercises performed consecutively. Do 3 circuits.
2. Following the circuit, perform 15-20 minutes of high intensity cardiovascular training (perceived exertion = at least 7 on a scale of 1-10).
3. Split your routine into 3 days ? total body, chest/back/triceps and legs/shoulders/biceps.
4. Perform 3 sets of 10-12 reps for each exercise in the circuit.
5. Rest no more than 60 seconds between each circuit set, and no more than 2 minutes between each circuit.
Brian Schiff, PT, CSCS, is a respected author, physical therapist and fitness expert. You can sign-up for his free online newsletter @ http://www.thefitnessedge.cc.
Copyright © 2004 Brian Schiff
The Many Benefits of Exercise
Health experts encourage us to include exercise as a necessary part of our daily routine to promote our general well- being. Together with healthy and balanced diet, adequate rest and relaxation, exercise is recommended to promote optimal health. People who are usually inactive can improve their health and well-being by becoming even moderately active on a regular basis.
Top 10 Exercise Mistakes and How To Fix Them
This is a list of ten common mistakes made during exercise. Quite often the exerciser and even the personal trainer or coach is unaware of these mistakes, decreasing the effectiveness of the exercise and even risking injury. This list describes each "mistake" but follows with a suggested "correction". You may find this list helpful in grading yourself or even your personal trainer.
Exercise: Why YOU Should Do It
Hundreds of Thousands of Americans spend millions of dollars each year on diet pills, "magical" exercise devices, and misrepresented health and fitness products, when in all actuality a good set of dumbbells and a brisk walk may be all you need to get in better shape than you've ever been in.
Stretching for Health
Lack of flexibility is now seen to be a major cause of general health problems and sports injury and is being linked to everything from stress. back pain, and even osteoarthritis. It also means that nagging injuries, especially around your joints take longer to heal.
Arthritis Exercise ? One Way to Relieve Pain & Stiffness in Your Joints (part 2)
Even when you cannot make it out to walk or to an aquatics or yoga class, there are exercises you can do daily to improve flexibility, strength and conditioning when you suffer from arthritis. You can flex your legs while sitting in a chair facing forward, simply by moving your leg outward while keeping your foot on the floor and holding it there for a few seconds, then retracting it until your foot is behind you, then alternating to the other leg. Interlocking your fingers and slowly flexing your wrists to the left and the right for a few minutes a day can help tremendously to increase flexibility and reduce pain in the wrist area.
Tai Chi, NOT Chai Tea!
Those of you that have either completed a one-on-one program, purchased an on-line program or have read anything else that I have written in the past have most likely determined by now and realize it is quite evident... I am a huge supporter and advocate of integrated and phase-based training as optimized methods of health and fitness technologies/systemologies. And it wasn't until I started researching Tai Chi as an alternative form of exercise (I have been exercising for three-and-a-half decades consistently) did I understand how such a slow-velocity activity can help decrease blood pressure, reduce stress, help develop a greater degree of coordination and diminish the number of falls experienced by the elderly. The affects of resistance and aerobic type activities and their impact on health is unequivocal. Resistance training improves strength and the development of lean muscle mass, as well as an increase in bone-density and cardiovascular training improves the efficiently of the heart, lungs and circulatory function while decreasing mortality rates. However, over the past few decades, Eastern practices such as Tai Chi and Yoga have complimented mainstream fitness training programs by demonstrating comparable health benefits to traditional fitness training. A closer look at Tai Chi is warranted and yes this is coming from a fitness coach who intrinsically knows and has meticulously practiced and has been the recipient of the absolute benefits of weight bearing exercise for over 30 years.
The Lactate Threshold ? Reality or Fallacy?
For many years exercise science has perpetuated the concept of a lactate threshold - a point during exercise where a sudden, sharp increase is noted in the concentration of lactate in the blood. This phenomenon is supposedly noticed when blood samples are taken from subjects performing incremental to max exercise tests much the same as a VO2 max test. Traditionally, it has been noted that when concentration of lactate is plotted against running speed (or %VO2 max) on a graph, as the individual runs faster the quantity of lactate in the blood remains constant up to a certain speed, after which a sudden inflection in the gradient occurs. This inflection point has been dubbed the lactate threshold - the point during intense exercise where the muscles become increasingly anaerobic, generating vast quantities of lactate. Therefore, this phenomenon has also become known as the anaerobic or ventilation threshold.
The New Discovery That Makes It Possible To Get An Effective Workout In Less Time
The Art of Multifunctional Training
Warming Up Properly
In our 'Stretching' article series (http://optimumlife.co.nz/Fitness%20Articles/Stretching/Stretching1.htm), we discussed why it's important to stretch as part of your workout. We also touched on the importance of warming up before even *thinking* about stretching. Since that article, I've had a couple of questions about warming up, so it seemed like a good topic for this week's Optimum Fitness News.
Home Gyms with Free Weights
Having your own home gym with free weights is not only convenient but gives you the freedom to work out anytime you want. You save time and money, have no costly gym fees, no driving time, and no child care is needed.
Top 10 Reasons To Exercise In The Morning
If I had to pick a single factor that I thought
Salsa Dancing for Fitness is Hot
Salsa dancing is emerging as a refreshing replacement for conventional aerobic exercises. Classes based on the fiery music and movements of Salsa, Mambo, Cumbia, Merengue and more are starting to get people interested in Salsa dancing, while at the same time giving them a pounding workout.
Monitor Your Body Fat Levels For Results
A very important aspect in really finding out if you're on the right track or not, is to monitor your body fat levels. Go to your local sports store and buy some body fat calipers to test your fat levels. Record these levels along with your body weight each week and start to monitor these changes. You want to make sure you're building quality muscle mass and burning that extra body fat.
Thick Today Is Fat Tomorrow
As we twentysomethings get further along in our twenties, we may start to notice ourselves gaining weight. It sucks, because at one time you could eat whatever you wanted and now it's like someone shut off your metabolism. But did you know that by not exercising to lose those extra pounds you are actually setting yourself up for heart disease, colon cancer, diabetes, and osteoporosis? I just learned that these are all lifestyle diseases and can be eliminated even prevented by exercising and maintaining a healthy diet. Who knew?
Exercise and Diet ? For Your Waistline
Caring for your body is the most important thing you can do in your life. You only get one body, and it needs attention. Too often in society, we let things get out of control and then we try to find the easy way out. In weight loss, this means crash diets and diet pills. These are not the best for our bodies, as they suck out the energy and don't provide enough nutrition.
Exercise - Anxiety & Panic
Yes, all I'm afraid this does play a part in reducing anxiety and depression. As much as you may not like doing it (I've never been a huge fan of it myself) but once you get into it, you certainly feel better for it afterwards.
Toning Your Abs - Common Exercising Myths
1. The 'Chew Then Crunch' Myth
Exercising for life ? The magic is in the synergy!
Synergy: the working together of two or more things, people, or organizations, especially when the result is greater than the sum of their individual effects or capabilities
Exercising - Ways of staying motivated!
The number one reason people say they do not exercise is lack of time. Not long ago, a twenty-year study was completed centering on the theory that, "There is not as much time in the day as there used to be." The study concluded that just the opposite was true. It showed that with all the technology today, we have 1.5 more hours in a day than we did twenty years ago. In other words, with all the gadgets out there to help us communicate and manage our time, we should have an hour and a half more time for ourselves. What is the solution? With a little prioritizing and some time management, we can find the time to exercise!
Six Simple Strategies to Turn Your Walks into Workouts
If You are already fitness walking several times a week ? great! Now its time to step it up a bit. Here are 6 ways to turn your walks into workouts. They involve adding a little creativity but with these few simple techniques you can maximize the benefits of your walk and get more of an overall body workout.
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