October 23, 2021

Online Fitness 4-1-1 by Jenna Michael

We’ve all done it. Looked in the mirror, found something we don’t like and then immediately googled how to make it smaller. It’s human nature and the beauty of the internet. We have unlimited resources at our finger tips with the quick punch of a key. One quick search for “butt toning workouts” and you have millions of links to all sorts of tips, tricks, and workouts. So how do we sift through the junk to find quality workouts online?

Is your workout coming from a reputable source?

We all have that trusty blogger that we can’t get enough of. Your blogger of choice may post amazing recipes, healthy tips, DIY tips, daily adventures, workouts and many other things but before you get too attached, check their credentials. Does he or she have a fitness certification, license, or degree that validates their advice? I can’t tell you how many times I have come across a pinterest workout of the “best kettlebell moves” or “amazing flat abs” exercises that were created by non-certified fitness enthusiasts and have been pinned hundreds of times. While I have nothing against aspiring fitness enthusiasts, I do suggest only taking the advice of qualified professionals.

Does your source have adequate information for you to execute the workout safely?

Look for proper form and ample exercise explanations from your source. You don’t have to be an expert to see major mistakes like contorted body positions, awkward moves, or exercises that make you think “that can’t be healthy”.

Does he or she clearly explain how the workout is supposed to be executed?

One of the hardest parts about using workouts from the internet is figuring out what the author wants you to do. Repetitions and sets can get mixed up, timing can be poorly explained, and don’t even get me started on weird exercise names!

The moral of the story is to do your research thoroughly, don’t trust everything you read, and don’t be afraid to ask questions.  When your health and safety are on the line don’t settle for anything but the best.

Jenna Michael is a certified personal trainer, group exercise instructor, and author of Little Green Running Shoes, a healthy living and exercise blog. She blogs about her latest exercise tips while providing a common place for active people to discover new workout trends. Her passion for active living began at an early age in the dance studio and flourished thanks to her parents. Jenna has dedicated her life to helping others reach their healthy living goals through exercise and positive thinking. Don’t settle for anything less that what you want and always keep your focus on the ultimate goal.

Fitness Blunders by Nicole Bryan

Slamming the weights, not wiping down the equipment after your use or cutting in one someone else’s superset without asking! These are all etiquette oops-a-daisies in the gym. There are also misconceptions in the science of doing exercise that you’ll see often in the gym. Are you guilty of any of these?

Doing too much too soon. As a basic principle your body’s job is to always adapt to what you’re doing. Your muscles will adapt to the load of your workout by becoming stronger, when the load is appropriately increased in small intervals that is. Performing too many exercises too soon will place harmful stress on muscles, as well as your tendons and ligaments leading to injury.

Using momentum. Another basic principle in the science of exercise is control before load. If you are unable to control the weight you are lifting, it is too heavy. Decrease the weight before causing injury. Control means you should be able to stop the movement at any time during the range of motion. If this is not possible, momentum has taken over in place of your working muscles. Bouncing through exercises is a waste of time and more importantly, will lead to injury.

Doing the same thing all the time. Performing the same exercises for months on end will lead to a plateau. If you perform the same workout, same weight, same order, same exact exercises, your body will no longer be experiencing overload which means your body will cease becoming stronger.

Rushing through your workout. Rushing through your workout will cause your form to suffer, therefore increasing chance of injury. If the duration of your workout is overwhelming, it will be unsustainable. In turn you won’t be consistent. Since consistency is the key to your body changing, if you are hurrying through your workout to get it all in, it’s time to re-evaluate our exercise plan or change your schedule to allow for the extra time in the gym.

Pushing through extreme range of motion. More is not necessarily better in regards to exercise; the same rule applies to range of motion. Moving in a greater range of motion is not always best, because you’ll sacrifice stability. It’s important to stay in the range of motion where the resistance is the greatest on the goal muscle.

Mix it up!

Get Fit Quick Tip

Mix it up! Change up a component of your workout routine every 4-6 weeks to:

Keep results coming. Your fitness will improve while adapting to a new challenge.
Increase motivation. Your mind and focus is required when learning new exercises or skills.
Decrease risk of injury. Changing the angle at which you’re working your body prevents over-training.

 

Our Get Fit Quick tip will always be easy to remember and you’ll be able to implement it the very same day. Our tip will be so clear and concise you’ll be motivated to forward it to all your friends and family to inspire them to live healthy and fit as well.

Catch it!

Catch it!

Living healthy is contagious! Catch the energy and then pass it on to others you know struggling with exercise motivation! It’s challenging to be around those who enjoy fitness and physical activity, and NOT smile and take part. Joining our #HealthyWayMag Fitness Chat Community on Twitter is easy. Here’s how:

 

When: Every Monday 5pm(Pacific)/8pm(Eastern)

Where: Twitter!

How: Simply follow #HealthyWayMag for live chat feed

Thank You Summer Fitness Chat Sponsors! Check them out and learn how they can help improve your fitness.

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Milestone Pod. Milestone Pod the simplest way to track the mileage on your shoes. Lace the Pod on and it automatically collects workout data including: distance, pace, cadence, stride length, stance time, calories, and run history.  The Pod also displays the total mileage on your shoes, so you know when it’s time to replace them! Follow them on Twitter for details.

Efficient Fitness by Andi Singer

No matter what your goal is with your fitness and nutrition, you should aim to be efficient with both. You don’t need to spend three hours at the gym to lose weight, and there’s no need to starve yourself either.

Here’s a look at a few variables to consider whether you are trying to lose, gain, or get better at a particular sport.

Looking Beyond Calories

Too many people focus solely on calories in and calories out in regards to nutrition. True, you will lose weight if you expend more calories than you take in, but health and performance should be taken into consideration as well. Alternatively, to gain weight you must eat more calories than you burn.

You will get ideal results if you focus on keeping your diet rich in whole foods, proteins, and healthy fats. Focusing on macronutrients as well as calories will ensure that you feel full and have the energy to play sports or get through your workout routine without feeling tired or sluggish.

Supplement Where Need Be

It is also important to consider supplementation of nutrients your natural diet may be lacking. Women especially need to consider iron and calcium, and a high-quality multivitamin can help meet those needs. Speak to your doctor about your individual health.

If you have a high activity level whether you lift weights, run, or play sports, it’s also important to consume sufficient enough protein. If you are not a big meat-eater, you might want to consider supplementing your diet with nutritional shakes or bars to boost protein intake.

Train Smart Not Long

Cardio is not the only way to lose weight– in fact, it is not the most efficient either. When you do aerobic exercises, you essentially train your body to be efficient and burn fewer calories as you work out. That is the opposite of what we want!

Instead, do exercises that use the most energy possible in the least amount of time as possible. This might include sprinting, plyometrics, or lifting heavy weights. If you do competitive sports, consider supplementing your workouts with activities that will help improve your skills at that sport.

Andi Singer is a blogger working with a health management resource program based out of San Diego. She is both a personal trainer as well as a competitive athlete, and specializes in weight loss and performance. Go to www.ihmonline.com for information.

Find your Fitness FUN

Bored with your workout and in need of motivation to continue? Join our Fitness Community on Twitter!

Come CHAT FITNESS with us every Monday at 5pm(pacific)/8pm(eastern) via #HealthyWayMag. We trade workout ideas, exchange exercise tips and super-charge your fitness motivation!

Fitness motivation starts with finding the FUN in your fitness. A fun workout means you’re more likely to be consistent with your workout. Workout consistency is where results and fitness improvement happens. So, what are you waiting for? Find your fitness FUN!

THANK YOU to the following Chat Sponsors for helping us share motivation to live healthy and fit.

Drink Chia. Drink Chia is an innovative all natural chia seed beverage that offers an alternative to sugary and stimulant laden drinks. Drink Chia provides enhanced hydration, endurance and immune system support. They are the only chia drink that has the power of chia with B-complex vitamin, selenium and zinc as well as being rich in plant sourced-omega-3 fatty acids. Follow them on Twitter @DrinkChia.

Shaping Her Esteem. Shaping Her Esteem (SHE) promotes the participation of girls in physical activity to increase their health and wellness. They share nutrition tips, motivational videos and facilitate boot camps for young girls. Shaping Her Esteem is looking for girls between 8-16 who would love to write about her experiences in sport/dance, and to share positive experiences in physical activity! Follow them on Twitter for more info @ShapeHerEsteem.

KIND Healthy Snacks. They are your healthy food choice with a positive mission of promoting kindness. With a variety of snacks from which to choose, you’ll rest assured you’re feeding your fitness with healthy and nutritious ingredients.  @KINDSnacks

Buddy Up for Fitness Results

Get Fit Quick Tip

 

Buddy Up. Finding an Exercise Accountability Partner is a great way to stick with your workout. Having an Exercise Partner doesn’t always mean doing every single workout together, it simply means you agree to hold one another accountable to your fitness and healthy living goals. Find a friend, family member or co-worker with whom you’ll agree to check in on a regular basis as to the progress of your workout goals.

 

Check back often for your useful and practical healthy living and fitness tip! Our Get Fit Quick tip will always be easy to remember and you’ll be able to implement it the very same day. Our tip will be so clear and concise you’ll be motivated to forward it to all your friends and family to inspire them to live healthy and fit as well

Take your exercise outdoors! By Tera Busker

When the weather is beautiful, the last thing we want to do is be cooped up inside any longer than we have to. Step out of the gym and head out to your local park to change up the scenery for your  workout. Always consult your physician before participating in exercise. The following exercises are for those without injury concerns.

WARM UP
Walk or jog 5 minutes around the park.

WORKOUT
Beginners: 10 reps each exercise for 1-3 circuits, resting 30 seconds between exercises
Intermediate: 15 reps each exercise for 2-3 circuits, resting 15 seconds between exercises
Advanced:  20 reps for each exercise for 3 circuits, no rest between exercises or do 30 seconds of jumping jacks between exercises

EXERCISES
1. Platform Pushups
Find a platform like a bench or a step. Place your hands about shoulder width apart on the platform. Keeping the back flat, core tight and hips down, perform a pushup. Make sure the movement comes from the elbow and shoulders – not the hips.

2. Bench Step Ups
Using a bleacher or a bench, step up on to it with your left foot. Use and up, up, down, down cadence. After 30 seconds, switch and step up starting with your right leg.

3. Plank
To get into the plank position, start on elbows and knees, locking hands together. Straighten legs and raise your body so that you’re supported by the balls of your feet, with feet hip-distance apart. Face the ground, being careful not to arch your back or stick your hips in the air.

4. Walking Lunges
Walking lunges are very similar to the way walk but include an extra element, the lunge. With your right leg, lunge forward about three feet until your right thigh is parallel to the floor and your left knee is nearly touching the floor. Pause momentarily and then repeat the forward motion with your left leg. Make this exercise harder, try doing the walking lunges up a hill.

5. Bench Dips
Head back to the park bench and have a seat. Grab the edge of the bench keeping your hands close to your hips. Walk your feet forward slightly until your hips are off of the platform and your knees are at a 90 degree angle. Bending your shoulders and elbows, bring your hips straight down towards the floor. Push yourself back up.

6. Hanging Abs
This one is tough! Hang from the high monkey bars. (Your feet should not be able to touch the ground.) Pull your knees up towards your chest and then lower them back to your starting position. Be sure to keep the movement slow and controlled. This is an ab exercise, so try not to use the momentum and swing the legs.

Tera Busker is an ACE Certified Personal Trainer and owner of Fitness To Go, an exclusive In Home & Private Studio Personal Training Service based out of Roberts, WI. www.fitnesstogo.net

Is Heart Rate Training for You? By Jason Saltmarsh

Would you like to run longer and faster with less effort? Heart rate training can help you reach that goal. A heart rate monitor provides real-time biofeedback during your workouts to help you stay in the optimal training zone. Consult your physician to determine your specific target heart rate zones as they vary based on fitness goals, medications and state of health.

Determining Your Maximum and Minimum Heart Rate
To find your target heart rate zone, you’ll need to know your maximum heart rate and your resting heart rate. Then, you can determine several training zones between those two extreme values. The idea is that you use the heart rate data during your workout to stay in the intended heart rate zone. Some people choose to run by pace per mile speeds, while others by their ability to carry on a conversation. Heart rate training is based solely on BPM (beats per minute).

The American Heart Association recommends a method for identifying your maximum heart rate. Their method is to simply subtract your age from 220. For example, if you are thirty years old, you get the following: 220-30=190.

Determining your resting heart rate by taking your pulse for one minute just after waking up, or while sitting down relaxing. Athletes usually find their resting rate is around 60 BPM.

Determining Your Heart Rate Training Zones
Variety is the spice of life and the cure for ‘lazy’ running. Runners aren’t lazy, but their approach to training may be if they’re doing the same thing, at the same effort, day after day. To see improvements, you’ll need to mix things up and challenge yourself in a variety of ways.

The advantage to heart rate training is that it’s based solely on your own biofeedback. External measures such as pace per mile do not interfere with your results. For example, if you run a flat 6 mile course on a cool day at 8:00 pace, how does that compare to running 6 miles on a hilly course under a scorching sun at 8:30 pace?

Final Thoughts
Training principles remain the same no matter what method you use. A blend of long and short, easy and hard, fast and slow, and plenty of rest will keep you fit and healthy. Heart rate training offers you an exact measure of effort and gives you the certainty of knowing that you are training at your intended level of exertion.

 

Jason Saltmarsh is an competitive masters runner at distances ranging from 5K to the half marathon. In November 2013, he raced his first 26.2 at the iconic New York City Marathon. Jason’s goal is to share with others the benefits and joys of running, fitness and healthy living. For more information, please visit saltmarshrunning.com

Breathe!

Get Fit Quick Tip

Stressed Out? Practice Deep Breathing exercises! Deep breathing is an exercise that may be done anywhere, anytime, and without equipment. Inhale for a count of 2-4. Slowly exhale for a count of 4-6. Repeat every hour on the hour!

Range of Motion/Breathing for Relaxation Combo:
Inhale/Pull your shoulders up to your ears.
Exhale/Pull your shoulders down and back.
Enjoy!

Make our Get Fit Quick column your go-to for motivation and inspiration to live healthy!