Monthly Archives: September 2016
Monthly Archives: September 2016
In this episode, I wanted to share my best fitness tips. Each of these fitness tips build on each other. You really need to keep each of these in your programming to ensure you're getting the most out of your fitness program.
1. Warm up
This has to be everyone's #1 fitness tip. Like rubber, your muscles and connective tissue get stiff when they are cold. It is important for you to do a proper warm up to avoid injury. A warm up consists of slow and controlled movement to get the blood flowing through your body. Only after you've warmed up should you stretch or exercise.
2. Have purpose
Each time you go to “work out” you should know why you're there. I see so many people come into the gym and wander from place to place with no clear agenda. I'm not saying they're wasting their time, but they certainly are not getting the most out of those sessions.
Once you're in the gym, focus on why you're there. The only reason for you to have your phone out is to skip a song on your playlist or record your effort on a fitness app. Yes, you are on a rest, but without focus you're likely resting too long. See warm up above.
4. Use good form
This is another key fitness tip. Injuries will keep you from meeting your fitness goals. Just as a good warm up is important for injury prevention, you should use good form. I'd encourage you to listen to the episode with David Knox, author of Body School. If you don't know good form, ask a trainer. I'm even willing to help, just ask.
5. Have consistency
Consistency is key to reaching your goals. Our bodies adapt to the exercise when we work through a challenge, feed, rest cycle. Taking too many days off will stall your progress.
Using the same weight each time you work out will help you retain the strength you have, but you won't be getting any other benefit from it. When you exercise, push yourself. As I said above, you have to challenge, feed and rest to get results.
Another big part of the adaptation cycle, rest is imperative. This includes rest between sets, which should align with your purpose (shorter rests for endurance/mass and longer rests for strength). It also includes the rest between workouts. Don't think you can work the same muscles every day and see improvement. You have to allow the muscle to rebuild, which can take up to 72 hours.
Your muscle requires protein for rebuilding and some glycogen for fuel. Making sure you're getting enough food is important. If you're working while you're on a calorie restricted diet, you might find you don't have the energy to push. As a result, you're holding yourself back from seeing good results.
Hydration is key. You should make sure you're fully hydrated before you hit the gym. I like to take a sip of water between each set. This typically has me walking more during my workout and keeps me hydrated. And I'm not on my phone.
From time to time, you'll need to step back and see how you're progressing. This reevalution will help you avoid plateaus.
11. Educate yourself
Take the time to educate yourself. This goes with form, fuel, exercises, and reps/sets. You need to figure out what works for you.
I hope you enjoyed these fitness tips. Do you have any fitness tips you'd like to add to the list? If so, please comment below…
In the book Body School, David Knox lays out the ways movement and form will keep our body healthy, fit and injury free. As a life-long dancer (yoga, jazz and modern) and a martial artist (holding two black belts), David knows a thing or two about movement and form.
Our inner voice is a very powerful thing. It drives our mood and feelings, and it can determine whether we will be successful in our health and fitness journey.
I'd like you to take a few minutes to do an inner voice audit. Answer the following questions (you may want a pen and pad to write down a few notes):
Now take a few minutes to think about this. Would you use the same words to address someone you love?
I'm currently reading Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol S. Dweck, PhD. Yes, I actually read more than just health, fitness, and weight loss books. This best-selling book has been out for a while and has gotten a ton of praise in the business and education fields. That said, I think there are some very practical applications for someone on a health and fitness journey. I'll include a link to the book at the end of this post.
In the book, Dr. Dweck explains that mindset typically takes one of two natures:
Maybe you feel you have a little bit of both. Or maybe you think intelligence can be improved but we can't change who we inherently are deep inside. That's okay. Rather you're squarely in one or the other, or have some of both, you can move into a growth mindset, which in the end is the inner voice you need.
You can improve your inner voice with a few practices:
If isn't, now you know you can fix that.
Pause training is thought of as an intermediate to advance technique, but I think there are some good applications even for the beginner. In this episode, we'll discuss pause training and how you can use it in a safe and effective way.
I use pause training in two different types of exercises.
Squat to the bottom and hold for improved range of motion:
In his book, The Art and Science of Aging Well, Dr. Mark Williams writes about the current science on aging in a way that give insight into how we should live to make sure we have the highest quality of life as we age. He notes a statistic that is quite relevant to aging. The death rate for humans is one per person, in other words, we all die. It is all just a matter of how and why.
It used to be thought that cells live forever. This was disproved by Leonard Hayflick. A cell can replicate approximately 50 times before they effectively die. The only way to break out of the aging control is when the cell becomes malignant.
Cells count the number of times they can replicate. Each time a cell replicates the end is slightly shorter. A telomere is an end-cap that causes the cell to stop replicating and the cell dies (apoptosis).
If our blood sugar is high, which is typically measured in blood work as A1C. This shows advanced glycation end products (AGE), which gums up the works. High consumption of high glycemic and processed foods age us faster. Avoiding these kinds of foods are important for aging well.
We were made to move. Physical exercise is a key requirement for aging well.
Proven benefits of exercise:
How much exercise should we get? An answer came from one of Dr. Williams' clients. Work up a good sweat every day.