Regular aerobic exercise can help you live longer and healthier. After all, aerobic exercise reduces health risks, keeps excess pounds at bay, strengthens your heart and boosts your mood.
Healthy adults should aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity a week. That doesn’t have to be all at one time, though. Aerobic exercise can even be done in 10-minute increments.
And recent studies report significant health benefits from interval training, which means exercising at your near maximal intensity for short periods of 60 to 90 seconds.
For many people, walking is a great choice for aerobic exercise. In fact, walking is one of the most natural forms of exercise. It’s safe, it’s simple and all it takes to get started is a good pair of walking shoes and a commitment to include aerobic exercise in your daily routine.
Of course, there’s more to aerobic exercise than walking. Other popular choices include swimming, bicycling and jogging. Activities such as dancing and jumping rope count, too.
Your weight is a balancing act, and calories are part of that equation. Fad diets may promise you that counting carbs or eating a mountain of grapefruit will make the pounds drop off. But when it comes to weight loss, it’s calories that count. Weight loss comes down to burning more calories than you take in. You can do that by reducing extra calories from food and beverages, and increasing calories burned through physical activity.
If you have serious health problems because of your weight, your doctor may suggest weight-loss surgery or medications for you. In this case, you and your doctor will need to thoroughly discuss the potential
Losing pounds doesn’t have to be torture (we’re looking at you, cayenne-pepper cleanse). Adopt at least three of these behaviors — they’re simple to integrate into your day-to-day routine, and all are enthusiastically backed by nutritionists — and you’ll be thinner and healthier in days. (Plus, the weight will stay off.)
1. SNACK, BUT SMARTLY
Grazing between meals used to be on the weight-loss hit list. But nutritionists now know that it’s better to satisfy a craving with healthy grub than ignore it and risk a junk-food binge later. The best picks are filling, protein-packed snacks, such as one stick of string cheese, a tablespoon of peanut butter on a piece of fruit, or a medium-size bowl of edamame.
2. TURN OFF THE TV
Dining while viewing can make you take in 40 percent more calories than usual, reports a new study. And texting, driving, or any other distracting activity during a meal can also result in your eating too much. Instead, make each meal something you put on a plate and sit down to, even if you’re eating solo.
Maybe you’ve had sand kicked in your face. Maybe you’ve lost one too many attainable women to beefier guys. Or maybe you’ve read so much about weight loss that actually admitting you want to gain weight is a societal taboo.
Here’s your fix: Follow these 10 principles to pack on as much as a pound of muscle each week.
1. Maximize muscle building. The more protein your body stores—in a process called protein synthesis—the larger your muscles grow. But your body is constantly draining its protein reserves for other uses—making hormones, for instance.
The result is less protein available for muscle building. To counteract that, you need to “build and store new proteins faster than your body breaks down old proteins,” says Michael Houston, Ph.D., a professor of nutrition at Virginia Tech University.
2. Eat meat. Shoot for about 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight, which is roughly the maximum amount your body can use in a day, according to a landmark study in the Journal of Applied Physiology.
For example, a 160-pound man should consume 160 grams of protein a day—the amount he’d get from an 8-ounce chicken breast, 1 cup
1. Walking strengthens your heart
Reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke by walking regularly. It’s great cardio exercise, lowering levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol while increasing levels of HDL (good) cholesterol. The Stroke Association says that a brisk 30-minute walk every day helps to prevent and control the high blood pressure that causes strokes, reducing the risk by up to 27 percent.
2. Walking lowers disease risk
A regular walking habit slashes the risk of type 2 diabetes by around 60 percent, and you’re 20 percent less likely to develop cancer of the colon, breast or womb with an active hobby such as walking.
3. Walking helps you lose weight
You’ll burn around 75 calories simply by walking at 2mph for 30 minutes. Up your speed to 3mph and it’s 99 calories, while 4mph is 150 calories (equivalent to three Jaffa cakes and a jam doughnut!). Work that short walk into your daily routine and you’ll shed the pounds in no time.
4. Walking prevents dementia
Older people who walk six miles or more per week are more likely to avoid brain shrinkage and preserve memory as the years
Many people who’ve decided to get fit or lose weight are great at getting out and going for a walk or a run, and maybe you’ve grown to love doing cardio at the gym. But if you’re not including strength exercises as part of your exercise program, you’re missing out on a key component of health and fitness.
Completing regular strength exercises has been shown to reduce body fat, increase lean muscle mass and burn calories during and after exercise!
Benefits of Strength Exercises
- Improved muscle strength and tone
- Weight control
- Increased bone density and strength
- Boosted metabolism
- Increased self-esteem
- Prevention and control of health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and arthritis
Options for Strength Exercises
- Using your own body weight – easy and free! Strength exercises include push-ups, chin-ups and abdominal crunches
- Free weights such as dumbbells or barbells
- Resistance bands – light and portable, these bands provide continuous resistance throughout a movement
- Weight machines such as those found in gyms
Research into Strength Exercises
A recent study showed that 10 weeks of strength training can increase your resting metabolic rate by seven percent and reduce fat by 1.8kg. Strength exercises also improved the study participants’ physical
The best exercises are those you can do daily, so choose ones you enjoy and don’t be afraid to mix things up. Adding interval training to your fitness regime will not only burn the calories faster, it will keep your workout fresh.
While a daily walk can improve fitness levels and relieve stress and anxiety, if weight loss is your goal, running – not walking – is one of the quickest, most efficient exercises to help you lose weight and increase fitness.
Running burns about 650 calories per hour. As it’s difficult to run consistently for an hour though, interval training will help you reach a high-intensity burn faster, increasing your endurance, lowering your heart-rate recovery time and torching fat. Add in hill or stair sprints to your program, then recover with slower-paced runs.
Whether stationary or outdoors, cycling is one of the best forms of exercises for fitness. Sports physiologists have found that the body’s metabolic rate – the efﬁciency with which it burns calories and fat – is not only raised during a ride, but for several hours afterwards.
Even after cycling for 30 minutes, you
Many of us spend our nighttime hours flailing from side to side, flipping from stomach to back, yanking covers, doubling flat pillows, putting on socks, taking socks off, etc, etc. So it shouldn’t be all that surprising that we wake up feeling a little bit…discombobulated. And even those of us who sleep peacefully need a good stretch after 7 to 9 hours of slepp. All that time on your back is bound to make you feel a little creaky. Here, a 5-minute stretching routine that will start your day off right.
Perform 20 repetitions of exercises 1 and 2. Hold exercises 3 and 4 for 20 seconds on each side. Then perform 10 repetitions of exercise 5. At the very end, take one final deep breath, smile, and embrace the gift of another day.
Place hands behind head with elbows wedged wide open. Bend at hips, slightly bend knees, and reach butt back—not down!—as far as possible. As you do this, allow torso to tip forward. Be sure to engage core and tip forward at torso, and avoid rounding back. Hold momentarily then draw hips forward, raise torso, and stand
1. Mental attitude
Having the right mental attitude to fitness is critical. Your fitness goals are achievable if you have a positive attitude. Start by believing that you can get in shape and achieve the level of fitness you want.
2. Find a fitness regimen that works for you
There are hundreds of workout styles and gym classes. Do you want to do cardio fitness? Interval training? Resistance workouts? Do you want a personal trainer who can develop a personalised fitness routine for you? All fitness classes have their benefits, so do your research and find out what will work for you. Most importantly – try it out! You’ll quickly discover what kind of fitness exerciseyou enjoy.
3. Work on your fitness with a buddy
Join a fitness class or workout with a friend, sharing tips and inspiring each other along the way. It’s much easier to meet your health and fitness goals if you have a buddy motivating you.
4. Anytime is fitness time
You don’t have to hit the gym to get fit. Make the most of your commute by walking or cycling to work. Likewise, swap your chair
Have you ever started a fitness program and then quit? If you answered yes, you’re not alone. Many people start fitness programs, but they may stop when they get bored, they don’t enjoy it or results come too slowly. Here are seven tips to help you stay motivated.
Wobbling like crazy in one-legged yoga poses? Totally normally. Women naturally start to lose muscle mass as early as their 30s, and balance can take a beating as a result.
Fight back with targeted strength training: This plan works your stabilizers, the smaller muscles that keep you steady on your feet. The ab toning is an extra perk! For best results, do the entire circuit, three times a week.
Stand on right foot, left leg bent back and lifted. Extend left arm over head. Hinge forward from waist, keeping back flat, reaching left hand toward right foot (as shown). Return to start. Do 12 reps. Switch sides; repeat.
Go easy: Keep back toes lightly planted.
Fit tip: Contract abs throughout.
Sit with right foot flat, left foot off floor. Press into right heel and quickly stand. Return to seated position. Do 12 reps. Switch sides; repeat.
Go easy: Use arms to push off the seat.
Fit tip: Stare forward to stay balanced.
Stand with feet
Before you start this 15-minute routine, dim or turn off the lights. You’ll also need two props: something small and heavy like a large book, and a couple of folded towels or thick pillows. Keep this up nightly and you should see results in a week or two.
Relaxed Diaphragm Breathing
Lie in a comfortable position on your back with your book (or other heavy object) on your belly. Notice your breath and see if you can gently lengthen it by breathing into your belly where the book it set. Use the pressure of the book to help you breathe more and more into your belly as you relax your neck, chest, and upper back. Continue for two to three minutes. This practice will help you learn to breathe from your diaphragm, which in turn will help decrease stress hormones by stimulating the parasympathetic nervous system.
Legs Up the Wall
All you need is a small spot at a wall for this one. Lie on your back and walk your hips close to the wall. Extend your legs up the wall and rest them there gently. If this is too difficult, move your hips a little
To Tone Everything at Once
Step 1: Stand with your feet together and your weight on your right leg, knee slightly bent. Bend forward at your hips, lifting your left leg until your body is parallel to the floor.
Step 2: Pull your abs in and squeeze your right glute as you return upright, without letting your left foot touch the floor. Do three sets of 10; repeat on the other side.
For Sturdy Knees
Stand on one leg with the other raised in front of you. Spread your arms for balance (or use a chair). Keeping your front leg up, squat down and reach for the back foot with the opposite hand. Do 10 reps; switch sides.
To Stand Taller
Start on all fours, with your abs tight and back straight. Slowly extend one leg behind you and the opposite arm forward, then bring them toward your belly until they touch. Continue for 5 to 10 reps; switch sides.
For a Strong Pelvic Floor
Lie on your back with one leg bent and the other raised, opposite hand on knee. Lift your pelvis, abs engaged. Keeping your hips still, lower the arm
Those padded benches at the gym aren’t just for pressing! These moves rely on your own body weight to tighten you up from head to toe. For best results, do this routine three times through, twice a week. If you want to squeeze in some cardio while you’re at it, try this variation: Between moves, step onto the bench with your right foot, then bring your Those padded benches at the gym aren’t just for pressing! These moves rely on your own body weight to tighten you up from head to toe. For best results, do this routine three times through, twice a week. If you want to squeeze in some cardio while you’re at it, try this variation: Between moves, step onto the bench with your right foot, then bring your left foot up so you’re standing. Return to start. Repeat 5 times, then switch sides.foot up so you’re standing. Return to start. Repeat 5 times, then switch sides.
# Split Squat
Perfect your posture with these easy exercises. For best results, repeat the routine three times through, twice a week.
Start on all fours. Extend left arm forward at shoulder height and right leg behind you in line with hips (as shown). Hold for one breath, then bring left elbow to meet right knee. That’s one rep. Do 10 reps; switch sides. Make sure to keep your back from sagging by pulling your belly button toward your spine.