Thursday, August 28, 2014

Video: 20-Minute Morning Yoga Workout for Weight Loss

This short and fun yoga workout takes only 20 minutes, but will help support your weight loss efforts, loosen up tight muscles, and energize you for the day ahead, so it's a great way to start off the day! It starts out very slow and easy, and then will speed up and become more challenging as your body warms up. You won't need any equipment other than a yoga mat. She gives very clear instructions along with the demonstration, so it is very easy to follow.

My husband and I are moving into our new house, so depending on my schedule, we may not be posting next week. But be sure to check back soon for more fun fitness tips and weekly workouts that help you get in shape fast!


More Fun Yoga Workouts for Weight Loss:

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

5 Weight Loss Tips to Help You Acheive Your Goal

When it comes to weight loss tips, it's not the "magic cures" that you should pay attention to, it's the real, solid advice that will set you on a healthy track for the rest of your life. And when you're setting a new weight loss goal, anything that'll make things easier on yourself is worth trying. With that in mind, here are 5 steps you should take at the start of your weight loss journey.

1) Buy A Scale: You'll need to keep a scale not only to keep track of your weight, but also scales for the kitchen to weigh out proper portions of food. Many of us overeat when we don't strictly measure our portions!

2) Find Support: If you can find an exercise and/ or dieting buddy then you'll have the support you need to continue even when things are at their most difficult. Studies show that dieting alongside someone else makes it a lot easier to meet your targets and set up healthy new habits. If there really isn't anyone who wants to join you, at least confide in others and share specific goals that will keep you accountable.

Notepad (software)
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
3) Get A Notepad: You need a notepad to note down the foods you're eating, and even the exercises you're doing if that helps. Although it can be tedious, knowing exactly what goes into your body helps you to improve things little by little. You can also use your notepad as a place to vent if you're feeling frustrated, and to reinforce your goals to help motivate you to continue.

4) Go Through Your Cabinets: If you're going to be dieting then you don't want to have temptation all around you in your home. So go through all your cabinets and get rid of food that will lead you astray and won't serve you well. Then go shopping and buy plenty of healthy snacks, like fruit, vegetables, and nuts, that you can have on hand whenever you're feeling peckish.

5) Choose An Exercise Program: Now that you've got everything else sorted, it's time to decide on the kind of exercise you want to do. Although you'll have to make sacrifices and sometimes do things you won't enjoy, you can cater your exercise to what feels best for you, which will keep you motivated. This could mean starting by walking every day, taking a yoga class, or running x amount of miles on the treadmill  - whatever you enjoy doing the most. Whatever you do, make sure you put it into a solid plan - and have some fun with it!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Video: 10-Minute Stability Ball Workout

This 10-minute workout uses a stability ball (also known as an exercise ball or a balance ball) to tone and tighten your entire body. It's a short workout, but it will still make you burn! This is a great way to get some effective exercise into your day, even if you only have a few minutes in your busy schedule.

For this routine, you will need a stability ball, an exercise mat, and an open wall. You will do each exercise for 45 seconds. Like most Fitness Blender workouts, this video provides clear instructions, along with the demonstration. So grab a ball, and let's work out!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

5 Reasons to Make Stability-Ball Exercises Part of Your Workout

Whether at a gym or in your own home, one piece of fitness equipment that is often overlooked is the stability ball.  It is known by many different names:  Swiss ball, exercise ball, fitness ball, and physical therapy ball, among others.  Used alone, or in conjunction with other equipment, stability-ball exercises can add a whole new dimension to your workout. 

English: Sgt. Maj. Brent Jurgersen, also known...
Stability balls can be used by people of all ages and fitness levels. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
1. The stability ball is more versatile than other piece of fitness equipment. 

* Originally used by physical therapists decades ago to help improve on their patients' balance, these balls are now used in a wide variety of exercises. 

* Although they are used to strengthen the core muscles of the abdomen and lower back, stability balls can be used with dumbbells for conventional upper body exercises requiring a bench such as the military press, pec (pectoral) flies, and the bench press.  You will likely find that you cannot lift as much weight when performing stability ball exercises compared to the conventional bench.  This is due to the reduced stability of the ball.  However, because your muscles are working to stabilize the weight, you will find that you will get just as challenging a workout as if you were lifting the full amount of the weight.

2. A stability ball helps to improve your balance. 

* Since you are not sitting on a static chair, your core muscles must always make small corrections to stabilize your position on the ball. 

* The reality is there is only one surefire way to improve your balance, and that is practice.  Sitting on a stability ball, even for everyday activities such as watching television, can do wonders for your sense of balance. 

3. Some workout benches are better than others, but no bench can ever conform exactly to your body.  An advantage of stability balls is that they will do just that

* Even when firmly inflated, the shape of the ball will change to follow your body's shape.  This is regardless of whether you sit or lie on it. 

English: an exercise of upper back
Upper back exercise with stability ball. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
4. As previously mentioned, stability balls require you to focus on maintaining your balance while performing any given exercise.  Because of this, you will activate a wider range of muscles than if you used a bench alone. 

* For example, with a conventional bench press, the focus is solely on the chest and arms.  Add a stability ball into the mix, and you now activate not only the chest and arms, but also the abs, lower back, and leg muscles as they work to keep you steady on the ball.

5. Lastly, compared to other exercise equipment, a stability ball is quite inexpensive. 

* As with anything in life, you get what you pay for, so seek advice when making your purchase.  However, the price of even the most expensive balls out there pale in comparison to the cost of some of the other gym equipment on the market.  In addition, although a stability ball is big in size, it can usually be tossed into the corner of a room and out of the way when not in use.

In conclusion, there are a number of reasons of why you should be incorporating stability-ball exercises into your workouts.  You are limited only by your inexperience with them.  So take the time to look for exercises that will work for you, and be sure to include them in your daily workout routine for a stronger, more toned core and better balance. 

You Can Even Buy Stability Balls Online:

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Video: Strength Training & Toning Workout

This excellent workout from Fitness Blender provides guidance through an effective weight training workout to help you tone and strengthen your entire body, increase your metabolism, and boost fat loss - all in about 25 minutes. You will need a set of dumbells, and the workout does not include a warmup or cool down, so be sure to do a few minutes of cardio first, and stretch afterwards.

This is a great way to get in your 30 minutes of daily exercise, while mixing it up a bit to challenge your body in different ways. You will do 3 rounds of 8 different exercises, to challenge each of your different muscle groups in combination, which is more effective than using weight machines, and also helps avoid injury.

Now grab some weights, and get lifting!

Lean & Strong - Strength Training and Toning Workout for Fat Loss

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

6 Tips To Minimize Your Chances of Injury During Weight Training

Weight training can be a great way to shed some excess fat, and transform your body from saggy to firm and toned.  This is best achieved with regular, scheduled workouts.

There are two main reasons why people stop doing their regular workouts: 

1. They lose the motivation to continue, which can be attributed to a number of factors.
2. They injure themselves too often. 

The good news is you have control over the first point listed above, as long as you have the desire to do some exercise - and you find a form of exercise you enjoy.  As for the second reason, although you cannot eliminate the chances of an injury, you can definitely take steps to reduce the risk of being injured during weight training. 

So what are some steps you can take to reduce the chances of being injured?

1. Seek Professional Advice 

Personal trainer assisting and correcting a cl...
Personal trainer assisting and correcting a client during a stretching exercise. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Assuming you are just starting a program, seek advice from a personal trainer.  He will guide you through a series of exercises to target the muscle groups you seek to improve.  He will also demonstrate the proper form, which will reduce the chances of hurting yourself. 

2. Concentrate

When you are about to do a set, focus on what the repetitions should look like.  Psych yourself up, and make the weights or the machine your focal point.  Do not be distracted by others around you. 

One of the worst things that can happen to you is to laugh at something when you are in the middle of a bench press, for example.  This is why people often listen to music with headphones while working out – it minimizes outside distractions.

3. Ask For Help

If you are pushing yourself to a new level, or even if you are just not sure that you will be able to get those last couple of reps in, ask someone to spot you through your set.  If you get in trouble, he'll be there to assist you. 

4. Know Your Limits

Do not lift beyond your ability.  When weight training, the tendency is to lift too much too quickly.  Lifting more than you can handle, creates several problems:
* It leads to poor form.
* There is a lack of controlled speed, which can lead to jerky or bouncy movements.
* You may unexpectedly go beyond your maximum range of motion.

Not only will the aforementioned points cause injury (especially the third point), but you will not be properly working out the muscles you wish to target. 

5. Stretch

Although there has been some controversy over the actual benefits of stretching before a workout to prevent injury, the general consensus is that joints and muscles should be thoroughly warmed up before lifting weights. 

A few minutes of cardio before a workout is advisable to help prevent injury.  And  although the jury is still out on whether or not stretching can help to prevent injury, regular stretching has one major benefit – it will increase your flexibility!  This is important for all ages. 

6. Stop

It is one thing to work through muscle stiffness, but you should not be working through pain.  If, on a lift, you feel that something is not right, or pain sets in, stop immediately.  Do not finish your set. 

In conclusion, when it comes to injury prevention during weight training, an ounce of prevention really is worth a pound of cure.  Using a common-sense approach with safeguards in place, will keep you on track toward your workout goals. 

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Video: Stronger Seniors Strength & Cardio Workout - Lower Body

This video from the Stronger Seniors Chair Workout series focuses on the lower body, increasing strength in the legs, while using the arms to increase heart rate for a gentle no-impact cardio workout at the same time. This one is for those who are either chair-bound, or unable to do a full workout standing up due to injury or infirmity.

You won't need anything to do this workout other than a sturdy chair, and it takes less than 10 minutes and should be safe for all fitness levels. Still, consult with your physician if you are unsure if you are fit enough for any form of exercise.

While it may not be as exciting as some of our usual weekly workout videos, fitness is more imperative than ever for seniors, increasing both quality and length of life. For those who are chair bound, any form of exercise is better than none - and you can tell that some of these lovely ladies are really having some fun with it!

If it's too basic for your needs, please do share this with loved ones in your life who may need a very gentle form of exercise!

Stronger Seniors Strength - Senior Exercise Aerobic Video, Elderly Exercise, Chair Exercise #ExerciseForSeniors Seniors Chair Aerobics- This clip focuses on the lower body. This Chair Exercise program helps seniors an...

More From the Stronger Seniors Workout Series:

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Review: Stronger Seniors Core Fitness Workout

Whether you're a senior, or just someone recovering from an injury and and you find some workout programs have too much impact on your joints or you have physical challenges that make traditional exercise programs difficult, the Stronger Seniors Core Fitness program is a great solution.

This is a DVD fitness program you can enjoy in the privacy of your own home. But what you’ll find is unique about it is that all of the exercises are performed while seated in a chair, so you won’t have to worry about any impact on your joints.

While there are several different Stronger Seniors workouts, this particular program is designed to help you improve the strength of your abdominals. In addition, you’ll find that you take pressure off of your lower back and you experience better posture and balance. You’ll also learn the best breathing techniques while you exercise.

It’s important as you age that you continue to exercise your body. Exercise has been shown to improve mobility and decrease the risk of developing chronic diseases. If you have a chronic disease, in some cases, exercise can help to alleviate symptoms and even reverse it.

But if you’re experiencing problems related to aging such as arthritis, heart disease, or osteoporosis you may have a hard time with exercises that require walking, jumping, or anything that puts pressure on your joints.

This workout program is free from impact but will help you to strengthen the muscles of your body that help you to stay balanced and pain free. With a stronger core you’ll find it easier to perform your daily tasks and possibly even enjoy exercises such as walking or riding a bike.

If pain or a lack of fitness has kept you from enjoying activities, this program can help you to get back the strength that you’ve lost. You’ll find that it improves the way you feel and helps you to be more independent.

This program uses principles from Pilates to create a core strengthening program perfect for seniors or people with disabilities. Core strength is critical, but many Pilates exercises call for a wide range of flexibility that many people just don’t have.

As you practice the exercises on this DVD you’ll see that they meet you where you are. You can do all the exercises from the comfort and stability of a chair. You won’t have to risk impact or injury as you work to get fit.

There’s also an emphasis on the connection between the mind and body that will help you to have even better success as you work toward fitness goals. With the Stronger Seniors Core Fitness Chair Exercise Program you’ll get stronger, develop better balance, and be able to manage stress better.

Click Here to Get Yours on, and give it a try today!