29Jul
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Health Benefits of Mediation

One of the newest trends is mediation. Many experts claim mediation not only clears your mind, but can offer many health benefits as well. Mediation is largely considered a spiritual practice or an element to practicing Yoga. The technique of mediation can be used to treat life threatening diseases to help treat or being a sense of tranquility to the patient. Many doctors now recommend Yoga or mediation to help being a higher quality of life.

Health Benefits

  • Mediation will help lower blood pressure, regulate blood sugar, and lower the oxygen you consume. It will also help bring a state of serenity to you, bringing to peace.
  •  It will lower your anxiety level and stress levels down to an acceptable rate. There is a direct connection between anxiety and health problems. Many doctor believe that if you can manage stress and anxiety, the patent will recover much faster.
  • It will help relieve and decrease headaches and muscle tension. This is especially true for those who suffer from Migraine disorders. Migraines have been known to disappear nearly if you practice mediation. Muscle tension will cause headaches, if you can find a way to relax your muscles, the headaches will likely disappear.
  • It will help relieve allergies, eczema, or any other chronic condition. Many allergy issues may be stress related. If one can find out how to control their own stress level, many allergies etc. will disappear.
  • It can help with post-operative pain or discomfort. Post-Operative pain is unlike any other. It hurts from the inside out. Many times the pain is coming from the stitches on the inside healing as well as the outside healing. If you can find a way to relax and allow your body to heal itself, the healing process will go much faster.
  • It will help with managing pain and fear of being diagnosed with a long term disease like cancer. Being diagnosed with cancer or other terminal illness, will be one of the scariest experiences one can go through. Research has found that mediation can actually enhance your immune system which will help you fight the terminal illness.

Benefits for Women

Mediation can help women separate themselves from the identity of being just a mother, wife, or daughter. It can give them a sense of their own identity and develop who they are as a person. It forces one to truly spend time with themselves and really look deep on the person they are. They forces the woman to accept who they are and work on changing the qualities they do not like.

Mediation for many is as important as medication they take orally. It can help cure your body of negative thoughts and bring a sense of calmness to you. This state of calmness can be life or death for those inflicted with depression, anxiety, or terminal illness.

25Jul
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Weight Lifting For Women

Weight lifting used to be considered a men exercise. Women would strictly do cardio to avoid having any muscles. They would strictly do running, walking, or aerobics. Women wanted to be very thin. That is a thing of the past. Now women want to have muscles, lifting heavy weights, and be fit not skinny.

Benefits to Lifting Weights

Women, and me as well, lift weights for the muscle definition. One of the biggest benefit to lifting weights is it burns fat. This helps by increasing your metabolism thus burning more calories in a day. This will translate to the person being able to eat more food. Lifting weight will also give you results you can see. You will see the muscle showing. You will feel stronger and able to do more in your strength workouts like pushups or pull-ups. Weight training should be incorporated in every exercise plan for two to three days a week.

Basics to Weightlifting

In order to successfully gain muscle mass you must be able to increase the weight gradually. You may start with 10 pounds, then add weight to 15 pounds, and so on. Another foundation is when lifting, you must isolate the muscle to force it to change. The last tip is allow the muscle rest time. The general rule is 48-72 hours rest between working the same muscle group. If you do not rest the muscle group you will risk injury and over training.

Overtraining

Over-training can be a real problem for many weight lifters. One of the most common reasons for overtraining is doing too much too soon. You must, allow your muscle time to rest. There are tell-tell signs of overtraining.

These symptoms are:

  • Fatigue or insomnia
  • Injuries
  • Headaches
  • Lack of energy to complete workouts

If you are not able to sleep, workout, or feel ill, you may be training too hard too soon. Try giving yourself a few days rest to see if your body recovers enough to be able to get back into working out daily again.

Lifting weights is a fun sport but, should be done safely. Consult a book or a personal trainer that can show you the correct way to lift. They can should you routines that will target certain muscle groups and develop a work out plan for you. When lifting weights it is also important to eat enough calories and protein to feed the muscle growth. If you feed yourself well, eat enough calories and fats, you will see amazing results.

22Jul
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Home workouts or Gym, Which is right for me?

Deciding whether to buy an at home workout or purchasing a gym membership will be dependent on your needs, personality, and fitness level. Some people need a gym to leave their home and the distractions to work out effectively. Others do better at home where they can feel comfortable in their own home without feeling like other people are looking at them. So what are your options?

Home workouts

There are so many home workouts. In fact, the exercise video industry is a multimillion dollar business. The most popular videos are P90x, Insanity, Tapout XT, Body Revolution, and the 30 Day Shred. These workouts will offer a  total body workout. P90x is a weight lifting and cardio based program that promises you can get in amazing shape in as little as 90 days. Most people who use these programs when combined with a low calories and natural whole foods diet will see great results.

Gym Workouts

Gym workouts are good for those who do not do as well on their own. They often have classes one can join or you can use the equipment.  The weights are very popular attraction to the gym. Some like to run on the treadmill. They also have experts to help you along the way in the form of a personal trainer or nutritionist. This is so helpful if you know what part of your body you would like to tone or if you run into problems with your nutrition.

Celebrity trainers agree that the best time and work out is the one you will end up completing. If all one can fit in their busy life is 20 minutes, complete 20 minutes. Life can get in the way of exercising and fitness goals but only if you allow it too. Make yourself a priority. Explain to your family, working out is your time and not to disturb you. The family and work can do without your attention for twenty to thirty minutes  a few times a week. The result will be you feeling refreshed and able to be a better friend, wife, mother, husband or father. You will be healthier in mind, body, and emotional state. If you continue to live by ignoring your needs for others, your health  and body will suffer the price. Bottom line is it doesn’t matter if you workout at home or at the gym, as long as you do the workout out. The best method for you, is the one you will complete.

18Jul
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Swimming

Swimming is a great exercise. It is often recommended to those who need to lose a lot of extra weight because the water is kind to the joints. It is virtually a zero impact sport. Even a person who is very obese can swim and even jog in the water. The bonus to swimming is that it burned a lot of calories even if you are just horsing around with friends or your kids.

Freestyle

Everyone loves to swim. Kids, adults, babies all love the water. A good exercise to start is freestyle swimming. This is one of the most common forms of swimming. They also refer to this method as front crawl. It is common in swimming long distance. The reason it is called freestyle is the swimmer has freedom to choose the style they swim.

Water Jogging

Water jogging is much easier to do than jogging on a treadmill or outside. It has no impact on your shins and legs. The bonus is this exercise will burn a bunch of calories. This exercise is great high intensity interval training (HIIT). To complete a HIIT exercise with water jogging, you would sprint for 30-45 seconds, then rest 30 seconds. Repeat the process 20 times to get a complete workout.

Leisurely Swimming

This is also a great exercise, without feeling tired or out of breath. This exercise is just playing in the water with the kids or doing back flips. It includes walking around the pool holding your baby. You may not realize how many calories you can burn just by throwing your kids in the water or diving off the diving board for an hour or so. It is an excellent form of exercise

The bonus to exercising outside is you receive vitamin D from the sun at the same time. Working out outside is also a great place to clear your head from all the distractions of daily life. It can be a great exercise to be able to be without your family as well. Swimmers are known for their muscular build, lean physique, and endurance. Swimming is also a great way to break up your normal workout routine while getting Cardio at the same time. It is a win win for exercise and getting a break from hard exercise.

15Jul
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Obesity Concerns

When someone is obese, it is not uncommon for them to wonder how they got to be so fat. The weight comes on slowly usually and it is hard to notice when one gains weight.  Before long, you are obese or even  morbidly obese.  It may feel like it happened overnight, but it didn’t. Food, activity level and medical problems can all lead to America’s increasing obesity problem.

The great thing about Obesity, if there is a good thing, is that it is reversible. When you start exercising and eating well, the weight will come right off. It will take some time and dedication on your part, but it will come off.

“I am overwhelmed by what to eat”. This is a common concern when trying to tackle obesity. The fact is many people are overweight from not knowing what to eat, how much, and when to eat. People will often eat either too little or too much. Both are dangerously bad for your metabolism. If you eat too much, it is too much for your body to use all that energy(food), so it will store the food for a time of starvation. We, today, do not have periods of starvation like they had many many years ago. If one eats too little, it tricks your body into thinking it is starving. This will make your body hold on to every calorie you do consume.

“I don’t know which exercises to do”. Exercise is a big reason for America’s growing obesity problem. To many of us are living a sedentary lifestyle. We work at desks. We play video games. We are entertained by watching television, movies or playing on the computer. All it takes is 20 minutes of activity a day. It doesn’t need to be a hard workout either. Walking, yoga (stretching) or simple floor exercises will help getting one away from being completely sedentary. Use exercise to clear your mind. It is so relaxing to go for a walk after a hard day working. Exercise will help one’s mood and increase the calories you are burning throughout the day.

“I am fat because I have a medical condition”. This one is true sometimes. There are a few conditions that can cause obesity. For example Diabetes causes one to gain weight suddenly or lose weight suddenly when it is uncontrolled. Diabetics often have a hard time losing weight due to their insulin resistance problem. Thyroid, Depression and Diabetes are common diseases that can cause weight gain when not controlled.

Obesity can cause death if not controlled. Obesity can lead to a variety of health problems. It causes heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, and cancer. It can head to a heart attack. The fact is what one put in their mouth tells much about their present health status. When one changes their diet, making a change to be healthy, the health implications of their past obesity are no longer an issue. It is reversible.

Obesity causes damage to one’s self esteem. This can cause depression, even leading to suicide. If you don’t feel good about yourself, it is hard to take care of yourself like you should. It becomes very hard to feed yourself well. Showering, exercise and healthy eating is usually too difficult to plan out. This can be a chain reaction. Often health problems and mental health impact of obesity go hand in hand.

Obesity can cause a difficulty in women conceiving children. Obesity causes a disease known as Polycystic Ovarian Disease. It causes the cyst to be formed in the ovaries making it difficult for the woman to release an egg to become pregnant. It can cause fibroid’s to grow in the Uterus. This causes pain, bleeding and may need surgery to correct.

Obesity is such a complex problem with a simple solution. We should eat less meats and sugary substances and more fruits and vegetables. We should move more outside or participate in a sport and do less television watching. If we have a health problem, we should seek the advice of our doctors. It is our right to treat our bodies well with food, exercise and healthy happy thoughts. If we don’t make time to get healthy now, we will be making a deal to make time to be sick later.

11Jul
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Gluten free eating, Is it right for everyone?

Gluten free eating is becoming the newest trend. Celebrities like Miley Cyrus are claiming that gluten-free eating helped her shed her extra weight. Are gluten free diets right for everyone? Most experts say that there is no need for the average person to eat gluten free. To benefit from a gluten-free diet, you must be allergic to gluten, according to the experts.

Allergy to Gluten

It is estimated that approximately 1% of the world population are allergic to gluten. A few of the symptoms one may experience if they are sensitive to gluten is stomach pain, diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, rashes, and irritability. If you are truly allergic to gluten, eating a gluten free diet will resolve most of the symptoms if not all of them.

Living and Eating Gluten Free

In order to eat glutton free, first we have to discover what gluten is exactly. Gluten is a protein found in wheat. All products made with wheat, barely or rye will contain gluten. Gluten-free eating involves eating by removing those out of your diet. To eat gluten free, one must learn to read labels and avoid wheat and its byproducts. Most products will be labeled gluten free. If they aren’t labeled, it is easily to read the food label looking for any wheat product. They now make gluten free breads, pastas, sauces, waffles, pancakes and cookies. Gluten free eating is not hard to stick with anymore.

Is gluten Free Eating Healthier?

The misconception is that if you eat gluten-free, it must be healthy. This is only partially true. There are so many processed gluten free foods, that it isn’t hard to gain weight eating them. Gluten-free eating will not cause any harm if you are not sensitive and expert claim that if combined with fresh fruits, vegetables, and proteins, it is enough to lose weight. The best way to lose weight and to take charge of your health is to pick of a way of eating that is sustainable for you to do for the rest of your life. Unless you do that, you will play yo-yo with your weight and never truly attain your gain weight.

Health eating starts with eating the foods you love, and eating better portions while being more active. If you do not have Celiac Disease, the allergy to gluten, you do not have to avoid wheat to be healthy. If eating gluten-free will help you keep eating healthy, then it is the right eating plan for you. The ultimate goal is to get healthy by moving more, eating less, and being a healthy body weight.

Yoga for Beginners

Studies have shown that adding yoga to your exercise regime can help accelerate your weight loss. They have found that those who practice yoga are much more aware of when they are truly hungry, much less inclined to overeat, and experienced a greater weight loss than people who do not practice yoga. Where do beginners start with yoga?

Poses

Yoga has simple and very complex poses. The great thing about yoga is once you master one pose, you will want to master an even harder pose.  Downward Dog is a very popular yoga pose. It relaxes your whole body while stretching your muscles. Another popular beginner pose is Warrior 1. This pose is an excellent choice for pregnant moms, beginners, and advance practices. Once you have mastered this pose, you can move on to Warrior II and III. In yoga classes, the instruction will do them in a row like one yoga pose. It is a very beautiful pose once you master it.

Mediation

Yoga is an excellent choice to become more Intune with your feelings and thoughts. Yoga will force you to channel you thoughts to relaxation and slowing down. This will allow you to deal with stress much better, sleep better, and eat less. Yoga has been shown to reduce anxiety, depression, increase mental clarity, and insomnia. When attempting yoga poses at first, you will feel awkward. The best advice is not to think about the pose but to breathe. Free your mind, by breathing in and out.

Health Benefits

In addition to the weight loss, there are numerous health benefits.  Those who practice yoga regularly have less constipation, less muscle aches and pains, and promotes a state of mental calmness.  Studies have shown that it can help promote healthy digestion. This mental clarity helps lower blood pressure and high blood sugar. The flexibility you gain from practicing, can help relieve back or joint pain.

Self-Awareness

Yoga leads to one being much more comfortable with who they are. First, you will learn poses and mediation; this will lead to self-discovery which is a one-way ticket to self-acceptance and love. Yoga teaches you about limitations you have or do not have, and teaches you that you can accomplish anything. This will spill over in your personal life. You will be able to set limits in your personal relationships because you have become more secure with who you have become.

Yoga can be a life changing practice. It is a great exercise for beginners to implement in their workout regime. It will affect your fitness level, personal relationships, self-esteem, and your health in a positive way. You will learn to accept yourself as you are, not comparing yourself to others. When you truly accept yourself, you will be able to change from the inside out.

Body Fat

The new trend today is not to be skinny but to be fit. Fit people often have well developed muscles and have a low body fat percentage. The common recommendation on message board and social media sites are to not look at the scale as your goal but have a certain body fat percentage in mind. So how do you know what your body fat percentage is?

Calipers

Body fat calipers can be bought for very little money. They are made of plastic and will measure the belly fat in millimeters. You would then take the measurement with your age and gender to find the body fat percentage on the chart that comes with the calipers. The downside is the calipers do need to be used at the same place each time you use it to be accurate.

Scales

Some scales have an option for body fat percentage and water weight. To get the measurement, you need to program your scale with your height, weight and gender. These scales are usually a little more expensive than the typical digital scale.

Measuring Tape

In this method, you use the method the Navy uses for body fat. You take the measurements of the neck, waist, hips, height, and hips. After getting the measurements, you put it in a calculator. The results is an estimation of body fat. There are some methods of measuring body fat that also takes your wrist, forearm, thigh and calf. This method is by far the most inaccurate version. You cannot possible measure body fat with way. It will give you a rough estimate and is a great starting point, but the result would be as much a ten percent wrong in either direction.

Water Submersion Test

This is considered the gold standard of measuring body fat. The downside is it is expensive about $150 USD. In this method, you sit in a bench like chair in a pool of water. You are then dunked in the water and told to exhale the air out of your lungs. The theory behind this method is that bones and body mass is denser in water, thus easier to get your true body fat percentage. This is the method they use on the hit NBC television reality show “Biggest Loser”. It is not practical for the average person however, would be beneficial for a bodybuilder or fitness model.

Bottom line is finding out what your goals are. If you are a mother trying to get healthier and just need a rough idea of what your body fat is then a calipers or measuring tape would be enough. However if you want to compete in a bodybuilding competition, you might need to do the water submersion test. Once you know your number, you are able to figure out what your goal body fat percentage is and work towards your goal at a slow, steady pace.

Choosing a Personal Trainer

A personal trainer is a person that will help you achieve your fitness goals. During your sessions, they will take your weight, measurements, and keep record of your progress. Finding a personal trainer can be a stressful experience. There are so many trainers and all their styles are so different. So how do you decide which trainer is right for you?

Experience

Experience in a personal trainer is vital. Do they have experience in keeping their clients motivated? Ask them to show before and after shots of previous clients. They need the experience to be able to know how to guide you in the right direction. They should have instruction experience and exercise equipment experience.

References

Ask them if you can contact current and former clients. Talk with the references personally. If they are a former client, a good question to ask is why they are no longer working with the trainer.

Attitude

How is the trainer’s attitude?  Do they make you want to work hard? Do they encourage you? Are they able to develop a workout program for you? Are they too aggressive or to passive?  These are all very important. It is important to pick a trainer whose personality does not clash with yours.

Integrity

How does the trainer dress? Do they appear not to give hoot about how they look? Are they messy? Their appearance will tell you how they feel about themselves.

Scheduling

Are they able to work around your schedule? The ideal trainer will make time for you around your schedule not the other way around. Do you feel rushed in your sessions? If so, the trainer is not the right one for you.

Qualifications

What type of degrees does the trainer have? Are they certified? It is important that your trainer have a certification or education so you know they can tell you how to work out safely. It would be an added bonus if they were certified in nutrition so they could give you diet and food advice.

Cost

Now more than ever, people are watching the bottom line; cost. It is important for your health to be able to afford the best trainer your budget allows. If that means only seeing your trainer once a week instead of three, so you can afford the best one available to you.
Personal trainers are important part of the fitness industry. They can help transform your body from obese to extremely fit. It is vital you find the right trainer for your budget, fitness goals and your personality. Trainers are not a one size fits all. In order to find the right trainer, you may have to interview several trainers. The right trainer can be the difference between reaching your fitness goals, and quitting. The right trainer will be your cheerleader, your go–to person, and your worst enemy all rolled into one person.