Thursday, September 26, 2013

Video: Treadmill Trainer - Your Personal Running Coach

Whether you're training for a marathon, or just running to get in shape, having a coach can really help you achieve your running goals. Hiring a personal trainer is great, but if you can't afford it, don't have the time to schedule regular sessions at the gym, or just don't want to spend the money, there are other options available. This quick video gives you a brief overview of the expert coaching sessions available through Treadmill Trainer. A variety of different Ipod workouts provide you with coaching and encouragement throughout your workouts, whether you prefer to run on a treadmill or outdoors - it's like having your very own personal running coach perched on your shoulder (but without all the extra weight). :-)

I love all of Yuri Elkaim's fitness programs - they are consistently high quality, affordable, and based on common sense and true health principles - not hype. Check out the Treadmill Trainer website, and find a program to help you achieve your running goals.

Treadmill Trainer iPod Running Workouts Run faster, farther, and longer with just 2 runs per week.  Running workouts for your iPod/MP3 player that can be enjoyed outdoors or on the treadmill.  Yuri Elkaim, Canada''s top trainer, provides audio guided instruction and motivation alongside heart pumping running music.

The Treadmill Trainer running workouts are so effective because of their interval design. Bouts of high and lower intensity allow the runner to get a better training effect with less time running.

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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

How to Set, And Reach, Your Running Goals

There are many different reasons to run. You may be running to lose weight. You may want to run to get in good shape. Another reason to run is to clear your head and relieve stress. And you wish to enter a race and be competitive. All of these reasons can overlap too. You can have many running motivations. One way to stay motivated, regardless of your reason for running, is to set running goals.

Setting Good Running Goals

People running at the 2007 20 kilometer road r...
 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The key to setting good running goals is to make them realistic and attainable. For example, if you are new to running it is unrealistic to set a goal of running a marathon in a month. It’s a surefire way to get injured. However, setting a goal of running a marathon in a year is a very reasonable goal.

The second step to setting a good running goal is to break larger goals down into small and attainable steps. For example, if you have a goal of running a marathon in a year then you may want to add two miles to your long run mileage every month. By the end of a year you’ll be at 24 miles.

Reaching Your Running Goals

Once you’ve established a running goal the next step is to plan how you’re going to reach it. For the sake of clarity let’s continue with the example of running a marathon in a year. A plan to run a marathon in 12 months might include:

* Three short runs each week
* One long run each week – this is where you would gradually increase your mileage by two miles each month.
* One complete rest day
* Two days of stretching and strengthening – yoga for example.

There are tools that can help you reach your running goals. The most important tool is a running log or fitness journal. A running log can help you track your mileage, pace, distance and any notes from the run that you want to make.

For example, you may realize once you reach the ten mile mark that you don’t have enough water in your water bottle. This may mean modifying your hydration routine or finding a new water carrier.

There are online programs and mobile apps that help you track your running information too. And of course there are a number of fitness gadgets that track heart rate, intensity and other factors. Find a tool that’s easy to use and supports you to achieve your running goals.

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Thursday, September 19, 2013

Video: Yoga Weight Loss & Balance Workout

This excellent yoga workout will help you reduce stress and optimize your weight-loss potential with yoga expert, Tara Stiles as she takes you through this flowing and effective exercise routine that will leave you looking and feeling your best. Lengthen and strengthen your body with Tara's powerful vinyasa of authentic yoga and achieve lasting weight-loss results. This total body-toning workout is great for any skill level,* and will help you sculpt and define your arms, legs, abs, shoulders, buns, and back. Lead with the breath and get in tune with your inner self through the magic of Yoga as you flow through this calorie-burning workout led by Deepak Chopra's very own private instructor. This calming segment was taken from the Yoga Transformation: Weight Loss & Balance Fitness DVD featuring Deepak Chopra and Tara Stiles. For the full video, and some related workouts, see resources below the video.

*(This workout is okay for any skill level, but you should still consult with your doctor or fitness professional before starting any new exercise routine, especially if you are starting at a low fitness level.)

Tara Stiles: Yoga Weight Loss & Balance Workout
Tara Stiles: Yoga Weight Loss & Balance Workout is a short but powerful series of authentic Yoga poses that are designed to stretch and strengthen key muscle groups, burn fat, and improve balance for a lean and toned body.

Grab this DVD & Related Workouts Here:
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Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Balance Your Life & Get Fit With Yoga

After a surge of interest during the consciousness-conscious '60s, yoga began to fall out of favor. Exercisers apparently lost patience with the activity, which offers slow but steady results, and turned to the fast pace and quick shape-up of aerobics. Now yoga is back - but less mystical than in the past, less reminiscent of gurus in pretzel positions, and more attractive than ever to people who are interested in working out rather than working toward some spiritual goal (although there are certainly many forms of yoga that can help with that as well).

People in various yoga asanas. Original title ...
People in various yoga asanas.  (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Once you step out of the metaphysical, yoga is a great stretch and flexibility program. Yoga is increasingly being used by those who are having a trouble in balancing their work and personal life. A stressful working environment and a hectic schedule has an unhealthy impact on the personal lives of modern day executives and so many are turning to yoga to bring about peace of mind and a better work-life balance.

Also, many disgruntled runners, weight trainers and aerobic dancers complain that instead of reducing the stress in their lives, their exercise regimes add more.

People rush to work out every day at lunch, force themselves to keep up and then rush back to work. Although being active in just about any form has health benefits, in some ways these forced, fast-paced workouts are somewhat counterproductive. Yoga is less competitive, less stressful, and above all gives a wonderful feeling of well being.

Indeed, the healing aspects of yoga are key to its renewed popularity. The strained knees, aching backs and neck pains generated by the push for fitness and the stress of making it in a competitive world have inspired many to turn to yoga instead. Some orthopedic surgeons, chiropractors and neurologists are now referring patients to specific yogis during treatment.

Growing interest in the mind-body connection is fueling a major comeback of the ancient practice, boosted by research suggesting yoga can reduce stress and blood pressure, improve work performance, and even slow the effects of aging.

Several yoga techniques are now being taught in mainstream hospitals and businesses; books about them are brisk sellers and many discussion groups have sprung up on the Internet.

US Army 52844 Soldiers learn to connect mind, ...
US Army 52844 Soldiers learn to connect mind, body, soul through breathing (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Even the Army is interested - it has asked the National Academy of Sciences to study meditation, yoga, and other new age techniques that might enhance soldiers' performance.

Details differ, but a common theme is relaxing the body while keeping the mind alert and focused - on an object, sound, breath or body movement. If the mind wanders - and it always does - you gently bring it back and start again. Yoga exercises include holding and/or moving through postures that tone and strengthen muscles throughout the entire body, while increasing flexibility and range of motion.

Stress-related problems and musculo-skeletal pain account for 60% to 90% of U.S. doctor visits, and mind-body approaches often are more effective, and cost-effective, than drugs or surgery. For example, in one study of people starting a regular yoga practice, 34% of infertile patients got pregnant within six months, 70% of insomniacs became regular sleepers, and doctor visits for pain are reduced by 36%.

Yoga can be a great addition to your exercise regimen, and can help balance your life in many different ways, which is of utmost importance in living a healthy, holistic lifestyle.

Visit our website for more on holistic living:

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Thursday, September 12, 2013

Video: Dr. Al Sears Discusses Fat Loss vs. Weight Loss & Interval Training

In this video, Dr. Al Sears explains why he developed his PACE Express program, and how fat loss differs from weight loss and why that is important for your health. He also explains why traditional endurance exercise can actually backfire and sabotage your weight loss efforts. Interval training is different from endurance or steady-state workouts because it conditions the heart to work more efficiently and gain strength. It also increases your metabolism over time, so that you begin burning more fat even when you aren't working out.

It's really very interesting, and his workout is not only effective - it's a lot of fun. Check out the interview to learn more, and if you're interested in the program, you can find a link to it below the video.

What is P.A.C.E.?
Dr. Al Sears, founder of PACE Express, explains P.A.C.E. and how it is a completely new way to exercise and get fit.

Grab Dr. Sears' PACE Express Workout Here: 

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Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The Benefits of Cardio Interval Training for Your Heart & Health

In a long-term study of health in the United States, the U.S. Public Health Service documented the chances of developing heart disease among various groups in the population. Long before the any symptoms appeared, epidemiological research could identify high-risk groups.

Among the highest risk factors are male sex, age over 35, cigarette smoking, high blood pressure, high levels of certain blood fats such as triglycerides, and a family history of cardiovascular disorders.

Other researchers have added to this list another risk factor: the compulsive, hard-driving, highly anxious "type A" personality. The greater the number or severity of the above risk factors, the greater the person’s overall risk.

English: Measurement of blood pressure in arm ...
Measurement of blood pressure in arm with a sphygmomanometer. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
These threats to the heart can be divided into two main categories: those beyond individual control, such as age, sex, and heredity, and those that can be controlled, avoided, or even eliminated. Among those in the second category are what cardiologists call “the triple threat.” These are high blood pressure, cigarette smoking, and high cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood.

If you smoke a pack of cigarettes a day, your risk of having a heart attack is twice that of a nonsmoker. If you smoke, have hypertension, and eat a diet high in sugar and carbohydrates without any exercise at all, your risk is five times greater than normal.

The Healthy Heart

If these risk factors endanger the heart’s health, what enhances its well-being and improves its odds of working long and well?

Obviously, quitting smoking and eating a balanced healthy diet will help. The next best thing you can do for your heart’s sake is to give it what it needs: regular exercise and in particular, the right kind of exercise, such as cardio interval training.

The heart is a muscle, or, more accurately, a group or “package” of muscles, similar in many ways to the muscles of the arms and legs. And just as exercise strengthens and improves limb muscles, it enhances the health of the heart muscles as well.

Since World War II, several large-scale statistical studies have evaluated the relationship between physical activity and cardiovascular disease. One well-known survey compared 31,000 drivers and conductors of several bus companies. The more sedentary drivers had a significantly higher rate of heart disease than the conductors, who walked around the buses and climbed stairs to the upper level.

The why and how behind these statistics were best explained by classic experiments with dogs whose coronary arteries were surgically narrowed to resemble those of humans with arteriosclerosis. Dogs who were exercised had much better blood flow than those kept inactive.

The exercise seemed to stimulate the development of new connections between the impaired and the nearly normal blood vessels, so exercised dogs had a better blood supply to all the muscle tissues of the heart. The human heart reacts in the same way to provide blood to the portion that was damaged by a heart attack.

An example of a heart attack, which can occur ...
An example of how a heart attack occurs. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
To enable the damaged heart muscle to heal, the heart relies on new small blood vessels for what is called collateral circulation. These new branches on the arterial tress can develop long before a heart attack — and can prevent a heart attack if the new network takes on enough of the function of the narrowed vessels.

With all these facts in mind, the question becomes, how do we strengthen the heart muscle and keep it healthy, and help it develop these new connections if it is already damaged?

A number of studies have shown that moderate exercise several times a week is more effective in building up these auxiliary pathways than extremely vigorous exercise done twice as often.

The general rule is that exercise helps reduce the risk of harm to the heart. Some researchers further attested to the link between exercise and a healthy heart based on the findings that the non-exercisers had a 49% greater risk of heart attack than the other people included in the study. The study attributed a third of that risk to sedentary lifestyle alone.

By employing cardio interval training, you can absolutely expect positive results not only on areas that relate to your cardiovascular system but on the overall status of your health as well.

This type of activity consists of a cycle of “repeated segments” of intense nature. These segments are separated by periods of recuperation to allow the heart rate to return to normal. This not only strengthens the heart muscle, but as you can imagine, it more closely mirrors the nature of human activity. Most people don't move at a constant high rate of intensity. Your body just wasn't designed for that. It is much more natural for you to experience a high rate of exertion for a short time, followed by a period of rest.

Consequently, engaging in this type of activity can bring you many more positive results than you may have previously experienced from steady-state exercise. These are:

1. The threat of a heart attack is lessened - sometimes quite drastically

2. Enhanced heart strength and ability to handle bursts of activity - for example, shoveling snow or moving heavy objects

3. Increased metabolism and increased calorie burn, even after you're finished with your workout, which leads to easier and faster weight loss

4. Improved lung capacity

5. Helps lessen or eliminate stress

Indeed, cardio interval training is one of the best ways to create a healthy, happy heart and body.

There are a number of interval training resources available, but my favorite is the PACE Express program by Dr. Al Sears. This is a comprehensive workout program that is designed to get you great results in just 6 weeks. It comes with 6 DVDs, each of which contains 6 workouts. They each take only 15 minutes, and believe me, you will feel like you worked out for an hour! They are fast, fun, and effective, and they help you shed fat with ease. If you would like to learn more, just click the link above, and check back Thursday for an interview with Dr. Sears and how and why he developed his unique program.

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Thursday, September 5, 2013

Video: Fun 8-Minute Cardio Interval Workout

This short video will give you a full-body workout in just 8 minutes - no equipment needed. Doing your cardio in intervals not only strengthens your heart and cardiovascular capacity, but it also boosts your metabolism for up to 24 hours after your workout, and it's easier on your body than steady-state endurance cardio, which is hard on your heart and your other muscles.

Plus it's way more fun, since you are constantly switching motions and taking breaks in between exercises, which is more natural for your body. And you'll be done with your whole workout in less than 10 minutes! Be sure to let your heart rate come down a bit in between sets in order to get the maximum benefits. And use the modifications if needed - work at your own pace and fitness level. (Be sure to consult your physician before beginning any new exercise routine, especially if you are starting at a low fitness level.)

Simple and Effective Cardio Interval Workout: Just 8 Minutes
From and featuring "America's Top Personal Trainer to Watch," Coach Nicole. Coach Nicole leads you through a fun cardio workout th...

For 36 fun interval cardio workouts which give you a full exercise routine in just 15 minutes, check out my favorite resource - The Pace Express Program.

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Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Tip #10: Reward Yourself!

Make sure that you have a reward plan set up whether it is a new little black dress, a day at the spa, or a meal out after your goal is reached and then continue to reward yourself periodically throughout the maintenance period thereafter. Giving yourself little incentives like this is not only fun, but makes you feel like you've really accomplished something, and that's worth celebrating! From boosting your immune system, to reducing fat, to improving cognitive function, regular exercise is one of the best things you can do for yourself.

A study of cancer patients found that an exercise program resulted in a higher ratio of disease-fighting T cells to less beneficial T cells. (

And physical activity has special benefits for older adults. There is strong evidence that it helps prevent falls and improves cognitive function, and moderate evidence that it lowers the risk of hip fracture and increases bone density. (

Overall, walking is the most popular form of exercise, with 30% of U.S. adults who exercise participating in an average day. Weightlifting takes second place with 13.1%, and using cardio equipment is the third most popular activity with 12.7%. (

But whatever form of exercise you choose, it's all good - just make sure to mix it up from time to time - not only will this keep boredom at bay, it will have more of a positive effect on your body as well. If you need ideas, be sure to check this blog from time to time for fun workouts and suggestions for keeping your activity level up.

We hope you've enjoyed this summer series on ways to get more exercise. As you know, getting enough exercise can give you a longer, healthier life and also just make you feel better overall. Even if you start out small, you can reap noticeable benefits. By incorporating these tips into your daily or weekly exercise routine, you will discover that exercise can be successful, fruitful, and rewarding all rolled into one.

To find more fun ways to exercise, visit
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