The Top 9 Exercise Lies Many People Believe

The Top 9 Exercise Lies Many People Believe

Get up and go! That’s all it takes, right? Not so fast! Many things that people think are true about exercise are actually wrong. Like anything else, if you don’t do it right, you are unlikely to get the results you expect. So let’s cut the fat and slim on down to the facts.

Lie Number 1. You will always achieve your goals if you stick with your exercise program.

Well, obviously, this depends on your goals and your program. Goals must be realistic and your exercise program must be designed with you in mind. Not everybody responds the same to the same exercise program. Given each of our genetics, it is likely that your personal gains in speed, power and endurance may be very different from that of other people you know.

Lie Number 2. You can lose as much weight as you want just through exercise.

Exercise is very important. But it will not do the job alone. As with all responses to exercise, weight gain or loss is dependent on many factors, including dietary intake and genetics. As discussed above, not everybody will lose the same amount of weight on the same exercise program. Believe it or not, it is possible to be active and still be overweight. You won’t believe how many black belts in karate I have known who were quick, strong and talented, but they just could not lose their beer bellies! Nevertheless, even though exercise by itself probably will not guarantee you reach your desired weight, regular physical activity is one of the most important variables in achieving a healthy and fit body.

Lie Number 3. You will burn more fat with low intensity workouts.

It’s a darn lie! The truth is that you will burn up more calories per minute the faster you move. The problem is that high-intensity exercise may be hard to maintain in the beginning, so most people are not able to exercise very long pushing so hard. Because of this, it is much safer and more practical to start out at a lower intensity and gradually work your way up. In general, the main benefit of low intensity exercise, other than as a starting point, is that it is less stressful on joints. However, the bottom line is that fat reduction depends on the total energy cost or how many calories are used up when exercising.

Lie Number 4. With specific exercises anyone can build their arm muscles or get a six-pack.

It’s just not true. What is true is that specific exercises will definitely tone and strengthen specific areas of your body. But if you have fat there you may not be able to see those strengthened muscles as they are covered with your fat! Not only that, but you cannot control where you will lose fat on your body through dieting or exercise. That is all genetic. That’s why being careful with what and how much you eat goes hand in hand with exercise. It’s a package deal. The good news is that research continues to show that any exercise is better than no exercise. For example, regular walking or even gardening for as little as an hour a week has been shown to help a person feel more energetic and reduce the risk of heart disease.

Lie Number 5. People who are obese are not likely to benefit too much from exercise.

That’s outright nonsense. Everybody benefits from exercise and everybody should consult with their doctor before beginning any workout program. Those who are very overweight probably need much more professional oversight and guidance so they do not try to do too much too quickly. But the truth is that research shows that obese people who participate in regular exercise programs have a lower risk of all-cause mortality than sedentary individuals, regardless of the fact that they are so overweight. Even a little bit of exercise is significantly better than no exercise.

Lie Number 6. If your goal is to lose weight, forget about strength training since it’s going to bulk you up.

Life is about balance. Your body needs cardiovascular exercise, such as aerobics or running, as well as strengthening, through push ups, planks or weight lifting. Strength workouts help increase muscle mass and decrease your body fat ratio. Everyone needs both.

Lie Number 7. Yoga and Tai Chi may be enjoyable but the fitness benefits are still unsubstantiated.

That may have been true years ago. But more recent research clearly illustrates that these exercise forms are quite beneficial in multiple ways. Some of these benefits include, improvements in coordination, flexibility, posture, balance, strength and stress management. Tai Chi has even been shown to help improve fibromyalgia and pain in the lower back.

Lie Number 8. Exercise programs in water are mainly for seniors and the handicapped.

Just because water fitness programs are primarily marketed to the handicapped and seniors, does not mean that they aren’t terrific alternatives for all of us. Water exercise offers many benefits, such as going easier on the joints, but don’t be fooled. These fitness programs can be just as challenging and successful for improving fitness and losing weight as any other. There are many athletes who incorporate water fitness programs into their workouts.

Lie Number 9. The best way to get healthy and lose weight is by going to a gym.

Poppycock! The best workout is one you are going to do! It has to be at least somewhat enjoyable, convenient, easily accessible and affordable. In fact, studies have shown that many people strongly prefer a home-based fitness program for all of these reasons! So ignore the hype about the latest fitness fads and trendy exercise equipment and facilities. Your best workout is what fits into your schedule, budget and needs. Do what works for you. But ya gotta do it!

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Take it Easy with the Vitamin D!

Take it Easy with the Vitamin D!

When vitamin D is taken at moderate levels, it has many excellent and necessary health benefits. It’s great for fighting various different bone diseases and even goes as far as to preventing the flu. However, a recent study suggests that people are ingesting way more vitamin D than they should be. Researchers found that 18.2 percent of Americans ingest more than 1000 IU than they need. Ingesting more vitamin D than you need in your body can lead to developing hypercalcemia, which is when you have too much calcium in your blood, and this can cause issues like fatigue, kidney problems, weakness, and poor appetite.

Vitamin D is produced when our skin is directly exposed to enough sunlight. However since it is best to avoid direct contact from the sun’s UV rays, it is advised to only spend about 10 to 15 minutes unprotected in the sun for vitamin D. We also get vitamin D through the foods we eat fairly regularly, such as milk, orange juice, salmon and eggs.

Since vitamin D is regulated in our bodies, people who have too much vitamin D in their system likely have it as a result of taking supplements. The reason why so many people have been excessively ingesting vitamin D supplement pills in the past few years is because of all the new research being found that proves all the beneficial effects of vitamin D. Although it is very important to maintain the suggested daily intake and amount of vitamin D required in our bodies, too much of it is never good for you! It can turn toxic, and lead to nausea, vomiting, weakness, frequent urination, bone pain, and kidney problems.

But when done properly, here are some of the health benefits of vitamin D:

  1. Better bone health
  2. Prevention of rickets and osteomalacia
  3. Prevention of osteoporosis and fractures
  4. Improved physical performance
  5. Protection against multiple cancers
  6. Beneficial for brain development and function
  7. Improves cognitive functions
  8. Reduces risk of Parkinson’s Disease
  9. Beneficial in Multiple Sclerosis
  10. Improves sleep quality
  11. Reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease
  12. Reduces blood pressure
  13. Prevents obesity and metabolic syndrome
  14. Reduces severity of asthma
  15. Protects kidney function
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Don’t Blame Metabolism on Age-Related Weight Gain

Don’t Blame Metabolism on Age-Related Weight Gain

As many people age, they tend to lose interest in taking care of their body physically. In some cases, many feel that they may be past their prime, and in other cases, they would blame their metabolism rate for being the reason why they gain weight. In reality, the weight gain that comes as people get older has very little to do with metabolism.

Okay, we must say that yes- every year from age 30 onwards our metabolism rate does indeed begin to slow down, however, it slows down at a very minimal and almost unnoticeable rate. Instead, the weight gain that comes with older age has to do with the fact that as people get older, they tend to get less active. Even if you didn’t formally exercise as a kid or teen, you did surely go out more and be more active. You played with friends in the park, and took part in other physical activities such as dance or gymnastics routines. At the very least, you simply ran around more from store-to-store, or from school to your job. And those things pretty much tend to come to a halt once people become established in their careers and adult life in general.

At first, the idea of gaining weight as a result of being less active at an older age may not seem so relieving. However, it actually is very alleviating because now you know that you can slowly work your way to start being active and do something to prevent age-related weight gain! The best calorie-burning and weight losing activity is simply to just get active. Making small changes in your daily life that you know will lead you to becoming a more active person overall can efficiently help you avoid gaining those extra pounds. For instance, by doing something as simple as taking the stairs more often, you may notice feeling more energized and motivated to being more active. Staying more active is also great for avoiding diseases like diabetes and heart disease that people commonly develop at an older age.

In addition to being less active, as people get older they tend to not pay attention to what foods they eat and are more likely to eat unhealthy foods. We advise you to stick to multiple small portioned healthy meals throughout the day, and be mindful of what exactly you are eating. By staying active and eating healthy, you can definitely steer clear of age-related weight gain.

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Weight Loss Myths And The Truth Behind Them

Weight Loss Myths And The Truth Behind Them

Every year or so, a new weight loss trend spreads either through social media or from what celebrities suggest. Yet sometimes these trends don’t actually work and may even make it harder for some people to lose weight. Here are some weight loss myths that many people who are on their weight loss journey may hear, and the truth behind them:

Carbs are Bad for You
A common misconception that many people tend to believe is that any form of carbs are terrible for you. Complex carbohydrates (rice, pasta, bread, etc.) are actually very important for providing energy. However like any other food group, portion sizes and what you eat the carbs with are important to control.

Skip Meals
Skipping meals is never a good idea. Not only will you end up gaining more weight, but people who skip meals, like breakfast, are more likely to develop heart diseases and mess up their metabolism rate.

Diet Pills are a Quick Solution
Any dietary pill or supplements that claim to have quick results are never long term solutions and can possibly end up being extremely dangerous! Most diet pills are not regulated by the FDA. Your body may react very badly to some of the ingredients and there are many negative side effects that come with it.

Cut off Whole Food Groups
Many people believe cutting off dairy or gluten is healthier. However, cutting off gluten and dairy also means losing out on calcium, protein, and carbs that your body needs. This can lead to serious long term effects.

Always Count Your Calories
According to many dietitians, counting calories may actually be a complete waste of time. Firstly, you don’t actually know how many calories your body needs or ends up absorbing.  Sometimes, many nutritional panels will not even have an accurate calorie count as the FDA allows up to a 20 percent margin of error. Instead of constantly counting your calorie intake, go for healthier food choices, and remember that moderation is key.

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One Interesting Hack can “Trick” You To Buy Healthier Food

One Interesting Hack can “Trick” You To Buy Healthier Food

When shopping for healthy food at the grocery store, sometimes it can be very tempting to add a couple of items into your cart that you’re really not supposed to. In moments of weakness, the mind might even begin to rationalize such decisions by thinking that muffins are healthy because they don’t have frosting, and chocolate is healthy because it comes from a plant. Do not give in! That will put you on a slippery slope real fast!

There are many little tips and tricks that we are all aware of when it comes to saving money while shopping for healthy foods- but what about tips and tricks that will actually lead to you to subconsciously choose more of these healthier foods? According to a research associate at Cornell University’s Food and Brand Lab, Aner Tal, “Having a little healthy snack before you shop—as long as it’s something that you really think of as a healthy snack—can change your choices for the better”.

Tal and his team conducted an experiment where a group of about 120 shoppers were given either a cookie or a slice of apple as a snack before they went shopping. The shoppers who were given the apple slice bought 28% more fruits and vegetables than the group of people who ate the cookie. They also bought 25% more fruits and vegetables than a group of people (the control group) who were neither given an apple slice or a cookie. Although apples undeniably have many nutritional benefits, the apple’s nutritional content was not actually what was credited for the results, but the healthier mindset that each shopper had after eating the apple slice was.

In fact not only can eating healthy food can change your mindset but also simply being near healthier foods can actually change your mind and “trick” you into making healthier choices. So now that you are armed with this knowledge, the next time you go grocery shopping, try having a small healthy snack to get into that healthy mindset, which will help you make wiser choices while you are food-shopping.

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Quick Tips to Eat Healthy on a Budget

Quick Tips to Eat Healthy on a Budget

The misconception that eating healthy can be very expensive has a way to stop many people from taking the first steps towards practicing cleaner eating habits. However, that is not true at all! There are many easy ways one can stay on budget while shopping for healthy foods that are delicious and very filling, and we’re talking about tasty items that won’t even make you feel like you’re on a diet.

We all know that with any task, it’s always best to plan ahead. The same idea applies for preparing healthy meals. Make a list of items you need before you go grocery shopping so that you know exactly what to look for. This is an effective way to shop quickly and also not buy any unhealthy junk food. Also, never shop when you are hungry!  You will tend to pick up items that you don’t actually need or are unhealthy.

When shopping for ingredients, don’t think that every healthy meal must include only organic produce. It’s okay to not always buy organic and sometimes this would not even make a difference! Always look for bargains, especially at your local farmer’s markets. Buy foods in bulk especially when you know those specific foods are going to be on sale. Try going to ethnic shops since foods sold there are cheaper than what you might find at a big supermarket. Here’s an infographic by Kool Smiles that offers a run-down on additional tips to make it easier to shop healthy on a budget:

Another way to save money is to start cooking more for yourself instead of eating out. Not only is this healthier and less expensive, you might even explore your hidden talent! Consider meal prepping every week so that it saves you time by allowing you to cook beforehand. If you have leftovers after you are done cooking, avoid throwing it out, and see if it can be repurposed into a new dish. The next time you go grocery shopping, be sure to use these tips and techniques to save money while enjoying the many benefits of the clean eating lifestyle!

 

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Clever Ways to Sneak Running into Family Routines

Clever Ways to Sneak Running into Family Routines

It can get hard to find time to workout when managing a busy lifestyle, especially if you’re taking care of your family in addition to your other responsibilities and obligations. Sometimes you may even feel guilty for putting other commitments, or even yourself first instead of your family. But what if you could get your whole family to join in with you the next time you go for a run? Talk about two birds with one stone! That way you wouldn’t need to compromise family time and also get your family to start exercising regularly!

Running can improve your health in many different ways and play a tremendous role in weight loss. Studies show that running can help prevent diabetes, stroke, and high blood pressure. Children that are old enough to run can go running with you or even ride their bikes as you run. You don’t have to worry about going at the same pace as them but instead just enjoy some time with your family as you get that movement in. If your children are too young to run, you may want to consider investing in a stroller that is designed specifically for you to push while you run. Make it a family activity and slowly get your kids into a healthy exercise routine! But be sure to get them proper running shoes first! Heck, let everyone else play an active role in choosing the shoes they would like to run in, to make it even more exciting for them. Here’s an infographic with more details on that:

How To Choose Running Shoes

To really spice things up, you can make a list of cool places that are nearby, and get there with the kids by running or even making it a race. That way you can have fun and get to the place you need to go to while getting some exercise done. If you don’t feel comfortable with running with your kids, then wake up an hour earlier than the rest of your family and go for a jog. Make every minute count! Although it may be hard at first to wake up much earlier, at the end it will all be worth it. If waking up early isn’t your thing (or if you’re already waking up earlier for other commitments,) then get your friends involved. You can ask your friends to help babysit or look after other things while you run, and offer to return the favor when they run. There are many ways to incorporate exercise and running into your family routine, so you and your family can live the healthy lifestyle you all deserve!

 

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14 Realistic Fitness Tips For Real People

14 Realistic Fitness Tips For Real People

When it comes to searching for fitness tips on the web, things get get overwhelming real fast. Where to start? Which tips will actually suit you/your body/your lifestyle? Oftentimes, the plethora of fitness tips available online seem a bit much and simply unrealistic. So we decided to compile a list of realistic tips for real people! Have a look!

 

  1. Set A Goal
    Before beginning any important task, especially when working out, you should always set a goal for yourself. Don’t mindlessly work out without an objective. Sometimes it’s better to actually set a goal that might intimidate you at first. That way, you’ll be determined to reach your goal!
  2. Multitask While Working Out
    If you’re worried about not having time to work out, try incorporating exercises into your daily routine. For example, instead of taking a car to places you need to go, take a bike or walk (when possible.) If you work somewhere where you have to sit at a desk for the whole day, get up and stretch every hour or so.
  3. Walk More!
    Simply walking more will lead you to burning more calories and increasing your metabolism all while getting to different places. Take small steps such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator, and you will eventually notice a difference.
  4. Get A Personal Trainer Or Sign Up For A Fitness Class
    If you don’t know what to do or where to start when it comes to fitness, sign up for a fitness class or even consider getting your own personal trainer.
  5. Make The Most Out Of Your Time
    Don’t waste your time! You can do easy and small exercises throughout the day. For example, while your food is simmering on the stove, you can do a few squats right there in the kitchen.
  6. Eat Right
    By simply eating healthy food, you can get away with working out a little less, and reach your goals faster.
  7. Use A Fitness Tracker
    Consider downloading an app to help count your calories or even invest in a Fitbit! Knowing where you’re at during your fitness journey can be very helpful to determine how and when you’ll reach your goal.
  8. Sleep Well
    Sleep is a very essential part of our daily routine, but many people don’t take sleep very seriously or know that it is as important as healthy eating and exercising. Sleeping for about 7-8 hours a day can lower your risk of becoming obese and also helps to increase your metabolism as well.
  9. Exercise With A Friend
    Surrounding yourself with friends that motivate you to reach your goals is a crucial element to living a happy and healthy life. Next time you workout, encourage your friends to work out with you, or at least arrange to have a designated workout buddy. This way you can have company while also reaching your goals with people that you care about!
  10. Reward Yourself
    You deserve to get something in return for reaching your goals, even if the reward is something small. Next time you hit a major goal, treat yourself! Wait, not with 10 pies, but maybe with an awesome new outfit.
  11. Work Out During Your Lunch Break
    If you have a job where you have to sit at your desk the whole day, take a walk at some point during your lunch break. You’ll feel more rejuvenated and energetic when you get back to your desk.
  12. Buy Some Workout Gear
    Many people feel more motivated to exercise if they have the appropriate clothes or gear to work out in. Work out clothes can also improve your overall performance- so give it a shot!
  13. Watch TV While Working Out
    It’s important to make workouts fun and enjoyable. If you enjoy watching TV or playing video games, incorporate this into your exercise. Play a game that requires you to move or even watch a show while you do some yoga.
  14. Make Workouts Shorter
    If you’re the type of person to want a shorter workout, try HIIT (High-intensity interval training) workouts. Short intense workouts are great for burning fat and may be a great way for you to get fit.
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The Perks of Prenatal Fitness

The Perks of Prenatal Fitness

Pregnancy is a very important and beautiful experience for many women. Since being an expecting mother is such a huge responsibility, isn’t taking care of the body that will carry the baby also crucial?

Staying physically fit while being pregnant and after giving birth can sound difficult and almost impossible. However physically training yourself so that you can stay fit during and even after your pregnancy makes all of this much easier and efficient. Many physicians say that they have noticed a trend in pregnant women who are physically fit or trained for the pregnancy beforehand, they are all much happier during their pregnancies and have less complications. The infographic below goes into detail on fitness exercises during pregnancy, which can also be practiced before pregnancy.

Exercise during pregnancy

In some ways, prenatal fitness can make it easier for many women to become pregnant. For instance, weight can be an issue for women who want to become pregnant but can’t because of how their weight affects their hormones. By exercising and having a proper diet, it can be much easier for these women to lose weight, conceive and have a healthy pregnancy all at once! Prenatal fitness can also decrease chances of health risks that occasionally come along with pregnancy. Although actually delivering the baby can be a very different process from person-to-person, studies show that having a fit cardiovascular system can make a normal delivery much easier and lower your chances of needing a C-Section.

Many women worry about how their bodies will look after their pregnancies. It is completely normal to not look fit right after delivering the baby, and it does take time and effort to eventually get back into shape. But staying fit during your pregnancy and maintaining a routine can make it much easier for women to get back to their routine soon after their delivery. There is never any disadvantage to staying fit and having a healthy lifestyle. So if you plan on getting pregnant, make sure to plan ahead and try your best to maintain a fit body during and after your pregnancy!

 

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