Feb 27, 2008

9 Exercises That Boost Your Metabolism You Can Do at Home

By John Barban In your quest to lose weight there are only two things you can do. The first is to eat fewer calories, the second is to exercise. This sounds simple, but not all exercises are made the same. I would say that all exercise is definitely good, but some exercises give you more return for your time spent. Specifically exercises that can give you both an cardiovascular and resistance workout are #1 in my book. Exercise that can do both of these will help you burn calories while you workout and boost your metabolism every day by maintaining your muscle mass. Here are 20 great exercises you can do right in the comfort of your own home that will burn a tone of calories and maintain good strong muscles and boost your metabolism even when you're not working out. Bodyweight squats - Stand with feet shoulder width apart squat down like you're sitting back into a chair, drive your heels into the floor a return to the starting position. Try 10 reps to start working up to 20, and then 30. Y-Squat - Same as above, with your arms up and out to your sides to make your arms and body resemble a "Y" shape. Try 10 reps, working up to 20 and then 30 reps. Squat jumps - Starting in the same position as above, squat down as if you're sitting back into a chair and then jump up from this bottom squat position. When you land from the jump sit right back down into this squatting position and repeat. Try 8 reps to start, working up to 12, 15 then 20. Lunges - Standing with feet shoulder width apart talk a long step forward with your right foot lunge down touching your left knee to the ground. Drive your right heel into the ground and push yourself back to the starting position and switch legs. Try 10 reps per leg to start, working up to 15 then 20. Reverse Lunges - Standing with feet shoulder width apart talk a long step backwards with your right foot, touch your right toes to the ground lunging backward touching your right knee to the ground. Drive your left heel into the ground and step back forward with your right foot, then switch legs. Try 8 reps to start working up to 15 then 20. Push-Ups - Lying flat on the ground face down. On your toes and hands push yourself off the ground. If toes and hands is too difficult, start with knees and hands. Try 8 reps to start, working up to 12, 15 then 20. (once you can do more than 20 on your knees and hands, start trying to do some on your feet and hands) Push-Up/Stick-Up - Do a push up the same as above, now in between each push up stand up and raise your arms above your head (like your being held up at gun point...this is why they call it a 'stick up') and then get right back down and do your next push up. Continue doing each repetition like this. Try 8 to start, working up to 12 and then 15. Step-Ups - Go to a set of stairs and step up to the second stair with your right foot. Step back down and then switch feet. Continue alternating feet until you've stepped up 20 times with each foot. Bridge - Get into a traditional push up position on your hands and feet keeping your body rigid and hold for 30 seconds. As you get better at these work up to 45 and then 60 seconds. Start by working through one set of all of these exercises. As you get better at them you can progress to adding another set of each, or choose which exercises you like to add more sets. Take 30-60 seconds rest between each exercise. This is an example of my new style of advance circuit training programs. John Barban is a Strength Coach and has his masters degree in nutrition. His trademarked 6 Minute Circuits Workout program is a new advanced style of whole body circuit training that is developed from his time spent as a varsity strength and conditioning coach. Eat Stop Eat is the new nutrition program John uses with all of his clients and athletes for weight loss and accelerated conditioning. Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=John_Barban http://EzineArticles.com/?9-Exercises-That-Boost-Your-Metabolism-You-Can-Do-at-Home&id=784598

Feb 20, 2008

Taking Control Of Your Thyroid

The thyroid gland is a butterfly shaped gland located in the neck. In simplified terms the thyroid pumps out hormones that impact how smoothly and quickly your body operates when converting calories to energy. It is estimated that approximately 13 million cases can undetected each year with symptoms ranging from mood swings, forgetfulness, lowered energy levels, weight gain to muscle or joint pain. A major problem however is for the category of individuals that are labelled sub clinical, which means that their thyroid levels are not low enough to be diagnosed with hypothyroidism but at the same time they do not have normal levels. With sub clinical levels it may be hard to find a doctor who is willing to provide treatment because many believe that medications may lead to hyperthyroidism which also has its own set of issues. If your doctor is unwilling to treat your sub clinical levels then get a second or third opinion and in the meantime you need to take some action of your own. There are a few easy tips that you can incorporate into your life that can help manage your lowered thyroid levels and in many cases return them to normal. Ensure that you are getting appropriate amounts of iodine which is found in iodized salt (table salt) and this is approximately 1/2 a teaspoon. Ironically the general health focus has been on the reduction of salt intake due to the concerns associated with raised blood pressure however it needs to be understood that the salt found in processed foods is not iodized. Iodine is necessary for the production of thyroid hormones, but don't go crazy with the salt shaker. This is not one of those situations where if some is good than lots would be even better, just be aware of the amount you are consuming. Another important mineral necessary for the production of thyroid hormone is selenium, Approximately 55 micrograms are necessary and can be found in foods such as brazil nuts, tuna, and rice. Watch your consumption of isoflavones, found in soy especially if you have a family history of thyroid disorders. Isoflavones can interfere with both the body's production and use of thyroid hormones. It is also recommended that if you are diagnosed with sub clinical hypothyroidism that you consider drinking bottled or filtered water that does not contain fluoride. There is a new concern that fluoride which is a standard in drinking water may impede the function of the thyroid gland resulting in lower levels of thyroid hormones for use in the body. Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish such as salmon, mackerel or fish oil supplements is necessary for the maintenance of the cell membrane. Although omega-3 fatty acids do not directly affect the production of thyroid hormones they help ensure the cell membranes are able to transport them into the body's cells. Last but not least is, learn to relax. This can be as little as ten minutes of quiet time locked in your bathroom but it will have huge impact on your overall health. Stress increases the body's production of steroids which in turn suppress the secretion of thyroid stimulating hormone thus causing an insufficient amount of thyroid hormone being produced. The tips listed above can be easily incorporated into your daily lifestyle with just a little awareness and can have a huge impact on your thyroid levels.

Feb 10, 2008

Two Flat Stomach Secrets for Women

By Holly Rigsby, CPT http://www.fitbusymoms.com/ Have you tried everything under the sun to get a flat stomach, only to come up disappointed? Have you fallen prey to all the gimmicks, fad diets and shameless infomercials promising you that elusive flat stomach that you desire? Well fret no more, I'm going to let you in on the two ‘secrets' that will help you shed unwanted fat and reveal your toned, flat stomach once and for all. The first secret for a flat stomach is eating supportively. While this doesn't seem like a secret at all, most women get this wrong in spite of their best – but misguided – efforts. Women have fallen prey to low-fat, low-carb, Hollywood, grapefruit, South Beach and every other over hyped diet that marketers can dream up, all in hopes of shedding those unwanted pounds. But eating supportively isn't about dieting or deprivation; it's about moderation and balance. While cutting carbs or fats out of your nutrition plan might give you a temporary loss of a couple of pounds, it's typically followed by a drop in metabolism and a weight gain of more than you lost in the first place once you go back to your old eating habits. So what is eating supportively? Eating supportively is having protein and carbohydrates at every meal. It's grazing on 4-6 meals or snack each day instead of missing meals and then gorging yourself. It's enjoying a healthy breakfast and not drinking your calories. But most of all, eating supportively is enjoying the foods you love in moderation instead of in excess. If eating supportively is the first secret to a flat stomach, then what's the second? The second flat stomach secret is resistance training. Unfortunately, just as fad diets have stood in the path of women achieving the flat stomachs they so desired, so have the myths of spot reduction and cardio being the best method for fat loss. Late night infomercials have long promoted gadgets that promised to spot reduce those trouble spots that women struggle with and sucked us in with testimonials from fitness models that undoubtedly picked up a nifty paycheck for endorsing their wares. But spot reduction is a myth. Think about it – have you ever met someone with a flat stomach and fat arms? Didn't think so. If spot reduction was possible then undoubtedly one of these happy customers would have toned and tightened their stomach, yet kept their flabby arms. The other myth that has led women astray is the belief that cardio is the best solution for fat loss. Treadmill manufacturers have sold the virtues of the ‘fat burning zone' and led us to believe that we could plod along on a treadmill watching Oprah and before long a flat stomach would be ours. These two myths have diverted us from the path of what really does work – resistance training. Resistance training is a flat stomach's best friend because not only does an effective resistance training session burn plenty of calories while you're doing it, but it keeps you're metabolism revved long after you're done. One recent study showed that you're metabolism would stay elevated for over 36 hours after a resistance training session.Try to get that out of an aerobics class! And there's another benefit of resistance training when it comes to getting a flat stomach. The lean muscle that you gain will raise you're resting metabolic rate and help you burn more fat all day long, each and every day. There you have it, two ‘secrets' that are guaranteed to boost your metabolism and give you that flat stomach you've been longing for. So ditch the diet books and the aerobics classes and start eating supportively and resistance training. Before long that flat stomach will finally be yours. About the Author Holly Rigsby is a nationally recognized women’s fitness coach, certified personal trainer (CPT) and the author of the internationally popular e-book – Fit Yummy Mummy - Burn Your Baby Fat & Get Your Body Back. Go to http://www.fitbusymoms.com to get your FREE copy of her special report: "The Five Ways To Boost Your Metabolism

Feb 9, 2008

Why Weight Train?

Women shouldn't be scared to "pump some iron". There has always been a myth that if women weight lift or do resistance training they will end up looking like the incredible hunk. This of course is not true unless we inject ourselves with testosterone. Committing to weight/resistance training does not mean that you have to go out and join a gym with a bunch of beefy looking men; it can be done in your own home. Reasons for lifting some weight The fact is that when we decide to diet (eat less) our metabolism does the unthinkable and immediately slows down. We combat this problem by doing exercise. When we engage in cardio exercises we do in deed burn calories however as a defensive mechanism our bodies adjust by burning less calories during the rest of the day (our bodies don't like to lose weight). The outcome from doing cardio alone or large amounts of cardio is that our metabolism goes into the toilet. This happens in two ways: 1. Cardio eats up muscle mass along with the fat; muscle mass burns calories (one pound burns 35-75cal/day) and fat does not burn anything. 2. As your lungs and heart become stronger and more efficient from your work outs you burn less calories both during your work out and after your work out. The bottom line is you must build lean muscle mass in order to compensate for the decline in metabolism caused by the bodies defenses against losing weight. It is important to remember that muscles burn calories 24/7 so it is a definite necessity for healthy weight loss to occur. Putting effort into building and then maintaining your muscle mass will also assist in overcoming the "plateau" stage that so many individuals fall into from doing cardio alone. Women should not be afraid to "pump some iron" so to speak, just remember that fat takes up 4 times as much space than muscle so what would you rather having hanging from your belly. By Christine Erickson http://www.fitbusymoms.com/

Why Women Should Exercise

Women know that exercise should be an integral part of their lives or do they? We know that exercising will allow us to lose weight and fit into our favorite clothes but what are some of the other benefits? Exercise when done on a regular basis has far reaching effects. Not only does exercise give you an immediate boost but it also improves sleep quality which in turn promotes even more energy giving you the boost you need to get through your busy days. The number of chronic illnesses that exercising helps prevent should be reason enough for anybody get up off the couch and get moving. These include high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels (think heart attack or stroke), Type ll diabetes, and arthritis. For middle aged women in particular the benefits to combating osteoporosis should be of great concern. Another disease that everyone is being touched by is cancer and exercise has not only been proven to help prevent many types but has also been linked to survival rates. Exercise has great significance in improving the health of our bodies but it also has effects on our minds. Studies suggest that exercise can not only reduce the symptoms of depression but it also helps with mental sharpness and even increases the number of actual brain cells in the areas that are responsible for memory and learning. This is just a brief list of the benefits of incorporating exercise into our daily lives however it definitely should be enough to motivate anyone to get up walk around the block a couple of times. By Christine Erickson Http://www.fitbusymoms.com

Feb 1, 2008

Women and Exercise

The fact is, a women's metabolism slows down with age and this begins to happen as early as 25 years of age and the simplified reason for this is the loss of muscle mass and increase in fat. A women's metabolism is ultimately different or slower, because there is less muscle to burn the fat. Some women may even have the same diet and exercise program as they had earlier in life but they begin to gain weight due to the natural changes in physiology and hormones that occur. For many more of us however, this is compounded by the lifestyle changes that occur as we have children and our priorities shift from ourselves to those of our families. In the end the bottom line is a lowered metabolism and a few or a lot of extra pounds. First of all in layman’s terms metabolism is the rate your body breaks down and uses the food we ingest into energy for use in the growth, repair, and general function of your body. When there is too much of a deficit between the foods we eat and what our bodies needs to function the metabolism slows; muscle and fat reserves are used. Muscle is the most metabolically active tissue in our body, for every pound of muscle a woman loses the number of calories she burns decreases by as many as 50 per day. Fat burns nothing; it just sits there hanging out, literally. Therefore, the amount of lean body mass you have is an important factor in determining the rate at which you burn calories. We are spending billions of dollars each year on a quick fix solution to our expanding waist lines however the fundamental principles remain the same: don't do time-wasting exercises or follow non-sense diets that do not contribute to your desired result. The only way too naturally increase your metabolism is through exercise however just three 20-minute strength training sessions per week will help you shed approximately 15 pounds over the course of a year without changing anything else. This works because you don’t not need huge hulking muscles (which are impossible to naturally get) in order to see the benefits of an increased metabolism. It is also a misconception that you have to spend time in a gym to achieve these results, working your muscles doesn’t have to be a complicated or time consuming endeavor. You can do many types of resistance training exercises in your own home, such as using a balance ball, doing leg lunges, or using hand weights. It is generally believed that for women a regiment of weight training should involve higher repetitions with light to moderate weight. Higher repetition means 15 to 20 while light to moderate means only light enough to ensure that you are able to keep your proper form and complete range of motion. If you are able to easily achieve this then adding a little more weight would be appropriate. Last but not least, working out with weights is not only an important weight loss tool but also a bone loss preventive activity. The health benefits from working out are numerous and just the fact that weight training gives your body natural stress relief due to all the endorphins that you are releasing while you are working out, makes it a powerful mental booster as well (who doesn’t like to be happy). Typically low calorie diets wreak havoc on your metabolism and amount of muscle loss is substantial. For many individuals it is beneficial to use a calorie counter to monitor their calorie intake. One of the biggest problems for women is that they under estimate the number of calories they are actually ingesting during the day. For this reason it has been proven that individuals who document there food intake on a daily basis have a better understanding about what and how much they are actually putting into their mouths. It doesn’t take a lot of time to become familiar with the nutritional values and the calorie content of foods when you spend a certain amount of time activity seeking the information. There are endless numbers of diet programs out their and everyone claims they have the answers. It is important to not get overwhelmed with an eating plan. If you can make small changes, focusing on a balance of all your food groups and ensuring that you are getting all of your recommended serving of fruit and vegetables you will be well on your way. The number one problem for most individuals is the lack of fruits and vegetables in their diets. The other important thing to remember is that it is necessary to incorporate lean proteins into your diet because these are necessary for your body to build muscle. The most important thing to remember is that a combination of exercise and a healthy diet are the key to not only weight loss but ultimately your health. For long term overall health it is necessary to incorporate both into your lifestyle. Neither part of the puzzle should be stressful and doesn’t need to be confusing, make small changes and have fun.

Is There Such a Thing as too Much Cardio?

Women have been spending endless amounts of time and money trying to lose weight or wishing they had either to even attempt the venture. Many have turned to "fad dieting" and "magic pills" only to fail in the end. It becomes a bitter cycle that just seems unrealistic because who has the extra hours to dedicate to an exercise program that requires 4 or 5 hours in a gym or the time and money to shop for special foods and "potions". A mother and physical trainer has gone ahead cracked the weight loss code for other women who want to transform their lives without turning it upside down. The exercise program is designed to be done at home without the loss of time or expense of daycare or a gym facility. The Fit Yummy Mummy Life Style Program is a proven safe system that was designed by a mother (and professional trainer) that not only targets the problem areas of the post baby body but also enhances your overall health and energy so that you can get through your already busy days. This exercise system is one that anyone can follow because it doesn't ask the impossible, it requires only 90 minutes of exercise per week and that can be as little as 15 minutes six times a week or three sessions of 30 minutes. Holly teaches you how this is the most effective way to get rid of the fat. Doing endless amounts of cardio actually has a negative effect on the body in terms of losing weight; it eats up your lean muscle mass which in turn slows your metabolism to a crawl. One pound of muscle burns between 35-75 calories per day which gives you a permanent metabolism boost where as fat burns absolutely nothing. The other metabolism downfall of your cardio workouts is that as your lungs and heart become stronger and more efficient from your workouts you will continue to burn fewer and fewer calories both during and after your work out. A doctor from Kentucky said "Despite what women tend to believe, endless cardio sessions do not render the results of a tight and toned body, nor is it found in the surgeon’s office, the solution instead can be found in time efficient workouts especially those busy moms can do right in their homes." The bottom line is you must build lean muscle mass in order to compensate for the decline in metabolism caused by the bodies defenses against losing weight and Holly teaches you that this can be done easily and quickly in your home. Women should not be afraid to “pump a little iron” so to speak, just remember that fat takes up 4 times as much space as muscle so what would you rather have hanging from your belly. This program offers help in making a permanent lifestyle change. Although you will loss the weight with this exercise and nutrition program you will more importantly you have renewed energy, strength and ultimately your health. As women we need to start making ourselves a priority in their own lives, if you aren't healthy and happy it is impossible to be there for your friends and family. To learn more about a program that will work for you go to: http://www.fitbusymoms.com