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Posts Tagged ‘fit’


Lately I find it hard to keep my eyes open while studying, and difficult to stop from yawning in the middle of work. How can a girl concentrate on anything while wishing she was snuggled up in bed falling fast asleep? She can’t! It has become clear that I need more energy, so I decided to do a little research to see what I can do to give myself a boost. Here are some of the best tips I came up with – I guarantee you’ve heard some of these before, but some of them, or the ways some of them are meant to be done, were certainly new to me.

  1. Get Enough Sleep
    We’ve all heard this one. The “you need your rest” mantra we hated as kids, but now miss oh so much. Seriously though, get at least 8 hours of sleep a night. You’d be surprised how much it helps.
  2. Eat Breakfast
    Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day. Don’t skip it. Even if it’s just grabbing a granola bar as you race out the door, or grabbing an apple or banana from the break room at work. It’ll make a difference to how you get your day going.
  3. Drink Enough Water
    8 glasses a day ladies! 6 of those glasses are supposedly best to drink before 3pm because that’s when your body does most of it’s flushing out of your systems, so re-hydrating will help that process, as well as keep you ready for action AND (this is always a plus) help keep your skin looking great.
  4. Rub/Tug On Your Earlobes
    According to Chinese medicine, stimulating your earlobes also sends stimulation to the rest of your body. It also helps draw blood to your head and gets it flowing. So give your ears a little massage and a few gentle tugs when you’re feeling drowsy.
  5. Stretch
    Sitting around all day is enough to make anyone drowsy. Get up and stretch, let your body get some movement. You’ll notice that you perk up a bit.
  6. Work Out
    Working out releases endorphins, which in turn, release energy into your body. That pumped up feeling you get after working out? That would be those endorphins.
  7. Try Deep Breathing & Meditation
    Deep breathing allows more oxygen to get into your system, giving your body more to work with. Let your stomach inflate as you inhale slowly and deeply through your nose, and deflate as you exhale slowly through your mouth, pushing out the air until you can’t anymore. Meditation and visualization can help bring you to a place where you feel fresher and are ready to tackle anything at hand. Meditation however, does take practice. But don’t give up! I promise you that once you master it, it is well worth it.
  8. Take Power Naps
    No, not hour-long ones. Believe it or not, the perfect power nap lasts only 15-20 minutes. This way, your body only has time to go into the first stage of sleep, rather than going deeper and not having enough time to come out of it properly. Anything over 20 minutes can lead to waking up more exhausted than before. So set that alarm!
  9. Eat Healthy, Balanced Meals
    Making sure to eat healthy and regularly is an important life skill. It helps to nourish your body and get the right nutrients into your system as the day goes on. Choose healthy snacks as well, to ensure that you are getting your energy from the correct places, and also to help you keep up your energy longer.
  10. Play
    Remember how you could run around for hours as a kid? Well that’s because you loved it! Get out daily and play – literally. Do something fun with your kids, your pet, or a friend. Do something you enjoy. Make time for you to have some fun.
  11. Re-evaluate Your Relationships
    Relationships can easily drain you of your energy. If you constantly have to argue with someone, work hard at keeping up a relationship, or give and not get anything back, you need to take a long hard look at those relationships. There’s a fine line between putting in the effort, and being taken advantage of or being worn down. Be careful.
  12. Take Your Vitamins 
    Taking a vitamin supplement can help boost your energy (whether you have a vitamin deficiency or not) and make you healthier overall.

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Find out what guys know (and you don’t) about getting in shape
By Brynn Mannino

Not that we’re envious (actually, yes, we are), but guys seem to have a much easier time getting fit than women. Sure, their bodies are different, but what if there’s more to it? After looking at men’s traditional workout habits versus women’s, we found that they have a few tricks up their sleeves. For one thing, strength training burns way more calories than cardio alone, and post-workout protein shakes are more than just an excuse to drink a smoothie. But that’s not all! Read on to find out how you can improve your own fitness routine by taking a few tips from the boys.

 

1. They work multiple muscle groups at once. 

The more muscles you work at one time, the more calories you’ll burn at one time—not only at the gym but during the days following, as your muscles rebuild, says Myatt Murphy, coauthor of The Body You Want in the Time You Have. Compounding exercises, like squats, dead lifts and bench presses, will give you the most bang for your buck, as they engage multiple muscles in your upper or lower body simultaneously. Revamp your routine by including exercises that work more than one muscle group or combine two moves (like doing biceps curls on a stability ball) in order to make the most of your time spent at the gym.

 

2. They leave magazines out of it. 

Reading while on a cardio machine could not only stifle your workout by interfering with your form, but it might also shorten your workout as well. “Looking down can hinder the oxygen flow to your lungs,” says Murphy. “The less oxygen you breathe in, the quicker you’ll exhaust yourself.” If you need a little more mental stimulation than you get from logging miles on the treadmill, Lou Schuler, coauthor of The New Rules of Lifting for Women, suggests doing calisthenic-style exercises, which mix short bursts of cardio with strength training.

 

3. They get their sweat on. 

If there’s one place sweating is socially acceptable, it’s at the gym. Not only does getting a good sweat on mean your body is heating up and, consequently, expending energy (read: burning calories!), it also detoxifies your skin, says Monica Vazquez, personal trainer at New York Sports Clubs. So don’t be afraid to break a sweat and push yourself as hard as you can to ensure you’re burning the maximum amount of calories.

 

4. They flex their muscles.

“When you strength-train, you’re not building muscle—you’re breaking it down,” says Murphy. Contrary to popular belief, the building-back-up part happens over the next 48 hours, mostly while you sleep, he explains. Contracting (a.k.a. flexing) your muscles right after a weight-lifting set continues to break down the fibers, even if only slightly. And the more you break them down, the more they’ll build back up, Murphy says. “In other words, boosting your ego can boost your results!”

 

5. They eat after they exercise. 

After you’ve depleted your energy, it’s important to refuel, “especially after you exercise, when your body is desperate to replace the stored energy it just used and will pull it from wherever it can,” Murphy says. Ideally, you want the energy to come from your stored fat, but your body may also pull from the calorie-burning muscle. By eating a mix of protein and carbohydrates after you train (thus the protein shake!), you can prevent your body from turning on its muscle, since it looks to your stomach first for fuel.

 

6. They hone in on a different set of numbers. 

Rather than fixating on how many calories they’ve burned or how much weight they’ve lost, men tend to focus on how much of a certain task they’ve accomplished—and how much more they should do next time they hit the gym. According to Schuler, steadily increasing speed (cardio) or weight (strength training) in increments contributes to improved strength and energy, and consequently, more muscle and better workouts in the future. Focus on improving your exercise stats (reps, workout time, weight lifted, etc.), rather than the number on the scale. 

 

7. They focus on getting stronger—not thinner. 

If you’ve ever tried to compliment a man by telling him he looks slim only to have it backfire, then you know: Men tend to want to look “big,” which denotes strength, while women usually want to look slim, which suggests a low percentage of body fat. Why is the guys’ way more effective? Strength means more muscle; muscle not only burns calories, but shapes your whole body. “If you’re aiming to change the way you look, you must change the shape of your muscles,” says Vazquez.

 

8. They log their workouts. 

Because of the nature of weight lifting (you should consistently increase the weight you lift) it makes sense that men record their workouts. Frankly, it’s hard to remember all those numbers! But there are other advantages to writing down workout stats that everyone could benefit from, explains Vazquez. “Not only does it keep you honest about how much you’re really working out, but it makes your success tangible,” she says. Figure out a system that works for you, whether that means jotting things down in a small notebook or creating a cheat sheet on your mobile or portable audio device, so you can build upon your improvements each time you work out.

Read more: Fitness Tips – New Exercise Advice at WomansDay.com – Woman’s Day

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