Thursday, March 31, 2016

Strengthen Your Quads With Bike Sprints

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If you are looking to grow your muscles the “pump” will help you do just that, bike sprints are the best way to pump up those quads so at the end of leg day why not add some bike sprints for bigger quads?

Regardless of the basic and harmless look of the Airdyne bike it never ceases to put me in my place. I like to push myself till breaking with drop-set leg presses, one hundred rep squats and walking lunges until I drop. Anything there is to try I have tried pump get in my quads from bike sprinting with the Airdyne bike is by far the most intense of them all.

Bike sprints for bigger quads are not necessarily any better than the above mentioned routines but if you really give it your all your quads will get the work out of their lives. Case and point would be a sprint cyclist quads, big cannot even begin to describe them even when compared to other cyclists sprint cyclists are far bigger. If you are an average lifter then bike sprints will add to your training, do these at the end of your exercise routine and they will be beneficial for the growth of your muscles.

There are many ways in which you can execute a bike sprint properly, you can do based on time or distance depending on what you prefer. You want to begin with a distance which places you in in a fifteen to thirty second range and three to four intervals should be performed during each workout, you can then add on by either increasing the amount of intervals per workout or the distance of the sprints, if you are truly looking to push yourself you can increase both. An example of this is as follows: eight rounds twenty seconds on and ten seconds off.

If you do not have access to an Airdyne or Assault bike do not fear, a spinning bike or even a normal bike will work just fine. The tension should be high enough that your legs really feel the pressure but low enough to keep the RPMs high enough that it is more like a sprint and not a grind. Just remember to always add some bike sprints for bigger quads.

See this demonstration video from T Nation below!

The post Strengthen Your Quads With Bike Sprints appeared first on NUTRITION CLUB CANADA.





from The Nutrition Club http://thenutritionclub.blogspot.com/2016/03/strengthen-your-quads-with-bike-sprints.html

Want To Stay Healthy? Stay Away From Bad Food

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While we think of food as nourishment for our bodies, we also need to know what is good for us and what is not, but in today’s world of food influenced by the demand for innovation and novelty, we often get blinded by what is pleasing to the eyes rather than what is needed by our bodies.

Coloured jellies and candies are one of the biggest culprits of non-healthy food in fact, they do not contain any nutritional value at all, causing the body more harm and no good at all.

Made mostly, if not totally, of processed sugar that is known to cause high glucose levels in the blood and trigger obesity, they are also mostly made with colouring agents and flavours from chemical additives that have been known to cause certain allergies or even behavioural issues.

Jellies, on the other hand are also made of sugar and gelatine, which may be sources from questionable products.

Good alternatives for these sweet treat would be dried fruits or edible flowers, or look for organic jellies and candies that are made with consideration to regulated amounts of nutrients for the body as well as made with organic additives and ingredients.

Soda beverages are also among those that contain large amounts of sugar and could also be harmful to the body and yes…even the ‘diet’ varieties.

While diet sodas contain artificial sweeteners, too much of these additives in the system can result to kidney or even brain issues- disadvantages that far outweigh the benefits.

You can opt for a more natural beverage with natural fruit juices or a  slice of lemon on a glass of iced water, of if you want a soda-like feel, get as little organic sarsaparilla cordial and mix with purified or mineral water on ice.

Processed deli meats like hams, sausages, etc. These cured and preserved cuts of meat have been enjoyed throughout the centuries but should only be taken in moderation.

Loaded with salt, nitrites and sodium nitrates linked with problems in the kidneys, cardiovascular system and high blood pressure. Tests have also shown that these meats also contain chemical compounds that aggravate chronic diseases and may trigger cancer cells in the body.

If taken in moderation, alternative choices could be smoked wild salmon or organic pastrami.

You may start the day with something heavy and filling, but try to steer clear of sweet and sugary cereals. These cereals are loaded with sugar that is enough to boost calories in the body. Some brands were also found to contain Butylated Hydroxytoluene (BHA) that are banned in some countries due to its carcinogenic properties.

The post Want To Stay Healthy? Stay Away From Bad Food appeared first on NUTRITION CLUB CANADA.





from The Nutrition Club http://thenutritionclub.blogspot.com/2016/03/want-to-stay-healthy-stay-away-from-bad.html

Your Birthday Can Help Predict Your Allergies, Studies Show

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Have you ever thought why you have allergic reactions at the start of the spring or autumn seasons? Then you may want to check the prevailing season from when you were conceived or born.

Researchers have reason to believe that the season you were conceived in your mother’s womb may play a role in letting your body react to changes in seasons or the environment surrounding you – as early as you were still inside your mother’s womb.

In a study published recently in Allergy by the European Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, researchers stated that they have found evidence linking a person’s allergy risks with their birth season through what is called as epigenetics – that may be responsible for marking the DNA on the prevailing season from conception.

Although further evidence is still needed whether the season of birth and DNA are linked directly, there are initial findings relating a person’s allergic reaction to the season where several test subjects were had conditions associated with environmental peculiarities of the season.

These epigenetic marks may change with environment as a stimulus which could allow gene expression in response to environmental exposure and may embed into the cells for a long time.

The test involved DNA methylation profiles of 367 participants from the Isle of Wight, where researchers found an epigenetic imprint on the genomes on the season on which a person was born and that the marks were visible until they turn 18 years old, concluding that this marks would tell when a child is born influence risks of allergies as they grow.

Dr. Gabrielle Lockette, study lead from the University of Southampton, said that they on to test whether the DNA methylation differences varying by season of birth that were also associated with allergic diseases where they found that two of them appeared to be influencing the risk of allergy in the participants.

“As well as allergies, other studies have shown that season of birth is associated with a number of things such as height, lifespan, reproductive performance, and the risks of diseases including heart conditions and schizophrenia,” said Dr. Lockette, adding that it is possible that the birth season-associated DNA methylation “that we discovered might also influence these other outcomes but this will need further investigation.”

The findings however, does not suggest that parents must choose the seasons in which they can start conceiving a child, rather, would  be more helpful to know which seasons could trigger particular allergies so mothers could supplement nutrition and essential minerals during pregnancy.

The post Your Birthday Can Help Predict Your Allergies, Studies Show appeared first on NUTRITION CLUB CANADA.





from The Nutrition Club http://thenutritionclub.blogspot.com/2016/03/your-birthday-can-help-predict-your.html

Is This The End Of Days For Beekeeping?

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Aside from being a good cottage industry, beekeeping is also believed to be a highly therapeutic past-time- but recent developments in the global economy, as well as climate change and bio-engineering is putting the industry at risk.

Years back when beekeeping was in its heyday, honey production and honeybee culturing and breeding was not only productive , but also a lucrative venture that sparked a lot of interests  from both hobbyists and large-scale honey producers.

Today, many beekeepers wake up each day with the uncertainty of what the coming production season would bring as losses as starting to increase by as much as 25% each year – from honeybee mortality to hive damage.

One such beekeeper is Nick French, founder of the Frangiosa Farm, in Parker, Colorado.who said that they work long hours during the summer to raise healthy bees, but is always faced with uncertainty if the most of the honey bees can make it through the winter months.

For several years now, they have been suffering huge losses, especially during the winter where based on statistics, beekeepers are losing almost a third of their hives due to honeybee mortality and hive damage, French said, pointing out that replacing damaged stocks are costly.

Many beekeepers have adopted a fund-sourcing scheme to help sustain beekeeping operations from avid honeybee supporters called “adopt a hive’- where adopters pay a fee for their adopted hives.

They will each receive an adoption certificate recognizing their efforts to support the cause and in return, they receive a portion of the honey product that is generated by their adopted hive.

In the case of French, his Adopt A Bee program at Frangiosa started in 2012, where adopters pay an adoption fee of $40 to $120 per hive in exchange for jars of honey.

During the first year, he was able to secure 25 hive adoptions and only late 2015, his adoption network went up to 300, who said that the adoption is more than increasing honey sales, rather, a step to ensure his hives’ survival.

“With the kind of losses we are experiencing, other industries would agree that we are going out of business,” French said, “I could not keep going without community support.”

According to a recent report by the Bee Informed Partnership, a non-profit group of research centers and universities, revealed that beekeepers are having an average of 30% losses every year ranging from a lot of actors like climate change, parasites, pesticides and loss of forage, among others.

The post Is This The End Of Days For Beekeeping? appeared first on NUTRITION CLUB CANADA.





from The Nutrition Club http://thenutritionclub.blogspot.com/2016/03/is-this-end-of-days-for-beekeeping.html

A 12-Week GPP Programme for Kettlebell Sport Athletes

GPP training keeps you healthy, injury-free, and away from boredom. Tailor a programme to suit your needs with this simple template.

I often get asked what the best form of general physical preparedness (GPP) for kettlebell sport is. Most people would like a quick “silver bullet” solution and get frustrated by my answer: it depends.

 

The truth is, the variables of exercise selection, intensity, and duration are many. Each athlete is a unique and beautifully complex individual. There isn’t a golden programme that will sort everything out for everyone, and this holds true in kettlebell sport as much as any other discipline.

read more

New Moms: Try This Baby-Wearing Workout

 

As a mom, it can be difficult to find the time to work out. Plus, to make things even more challenging, hitting the gym often requires hiring a babysitter. And at-home workouts? Most babies want to be in Mom’s arms, not watching Mom work out from the sidelines.

 

The newest trend in postpartum workouts, baby-wearing classes, involves simply strapping your baby to your body, BABYBJĂ–RN-style, and working out like you would in pretty much any other fitness class.

 

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You can see the appeal, right? Keep your baby close, be hands-free, and get in a workout—it’s a pretty great deal!

 

Interested? Try performing the following full-body strength workout while wearing your baby in a secure carrier, such as a Mei Tei or a soft-structured carrier (SSC).

 

Note: Women often find that wearing the baby on their back makes keeping proper body alignment easier and doesn’t create as much strain throughout the low back and abdominals, so if your baby is big enough for a back-loaded baby carrier, that is something to consider.

 

Baby-Wearing Workout

To do this workout, you will need light- or medium-weight dumbbells as well as either resistance bands and mini resistance bands or a cable machine..

 

Perform three sets of Circuit 1 and Circuit 2. Rest up to 30 seconds between exercises and 90 to 120 seconds between sets.

 

Circuit 1

1A. Reverse Lunges: 8-10 reps per side

  • Be sure to keep your lunge stance short to medium length
  • Inhale to lunge down and exhale to get back into the starting position

 

1B. Seated Hammer Curls: 12-15 reps

  • Feel yourself seated on your sitz bones
  • Control the movement both up and down

 

1C. Split Stance One-Arm Chest Presses: 8-10 reps per side

  • Lean your upper body slightly forward
  • Squeeze your back leg’s glutes to help increase your stability

Circuit 2

2A. Bodyweight Squats: 10-15 reps

  • Inhale to squat down and exhale to stand up
  • Watch that you aren’t slumping into a “tucked bum” position at the top of your squat

 

2B. Seated Two-Arm Rows: 12-15 reps

  • Feel yourself seated on the sitz bones
  • Exhale to pull in, then inhale to straighten the arms

 

2C. Lateral Band Walks: 10-15 short steps in each direction

  • Use either a full-length resistance band or a medium mini band
  • Keep a ¼ squat-like position as you walk

 

Extremely Important Reminders for Baby-Wearing Workouts

1. Strengthen Your Core and Pelvis First

Before wearing your baby and adding physical activity into that scenario, please ensure that you’ve completed a good core and pelvic floor restoration program. (FYI, after giving birth, it’s important to restore strength to your core and pelvic floor before beginning any workout.) Wearing your baby is physically demanding and can create stress for your core and pelvic floor. Your core and pelvic floor muscles need to be functioning safely and effectively in order to handle that extra load (the baby on your body!) without injury to your low back, pelvic floor, hips, knees, etc.

2. Maintain Good Body Alignment

Keep good positioning to allow your core and floor to work optimally. A couple of general alignment cues: keep an “untucked” bum, with a gentle arch in your low back. Keep your ribcage stacked directly over your hips

 

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The position on the right is a better alignment for my body. My bum is untucked, and I have a nice arch through the lower back. In the picture on the left, my tailbone is tucking under, and I’ve lost the natural curve through the spine.

3. Keep Breathing

Inhale during eccentric or “easy” part of the exercise and exhale during the concentric or “tough part of the exercise. Making sure to engage your core and pelvic floor (scoop your belly button up) as you perform the exercise’s concentric movement.

Remember The “3E” Rule:

  • Exhale: do a simple, easy exhale breath
  • Engage: do your core and floor connection (think about drawing the front of your hips bones together, and your belly button up towards your sternum)
  • Exert: do the toughest part of the exercise

For example, to stand up from a squat, start your exhale breath at the bottom of the squat as you begin to rise, engage your core and pelvic floor,, and stand back up.

4. Tune Into Your Body

Check in with yourself and be honest about how your body is feeling during and after the workout. If at any point in the workout, you have pelvic pain, back pain, or feel heaviness in your pelvic floor, stop, sit, and rest.

 

Next Steps?

If you want more information on the exercises that are safe to perform after pregnancy as well as the ones to avoid, download our FREE report here.

It’s great for brand-new mamas, although many of the exercises are also appropriate for women who are much farther along in their postpartum recovery but haven’t yet done specific exercises to heal their core and pelvic floor.

So if you or anyone you know has had a baby, and hasn’t done a specific core and pelvic floor healing protocol, make sure you grab your FREE report here.

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A 12-Week GPP Programme for Kettlebell Sport Athletes

GPP training keeps you healthy, injury-free, and away from boredom. Tailor a programme to suit your needs with this simple template.

I often get asked what the best form of general physical preparedness (GPP) for kettlebell sport is. Most people would like a quick “silver bullet” solution and get frustrated by my answer: it depends.

 

The truth is, the variables of exercise selection, intensity, and duration are many. Each athlete is a unique and beautifully complex individual. There isn’t a golden programme that will sort everything out for everyone, and this holds true in kettlebell sport as much as any other discipline.

read more

The Athlete With the Best Brain Wins

The primary purpose of the brain is movement. So what are you doing to train the brain?

read more

Size, Strength, or Power? A Training Method Primer

Understanding the intricacies of different protocols will equip you for success in the gym.

What is your ultimate goal: to gain size, strength, or power? Do your workouts reflect that goal? Or do you train blindly without any rhyme or reason?

 

read more

5 Injury Prevention Exercises to Build Bulletproof Athletes

The most important job of a strength coach is to help reduce injury both on and off the field.

As strength coaches, the athlete’s health should be our top priority. The role of a strength coach is to prepare athletes to play their sport and compete through strength and conditioning programs that are developed to elevate their athleticism.

 

read more

Learn the Rules, Then Break Them

The fitness industry is all about creating rules, but you can break all of them and still succeed.
Charles is here on a weekly basis to help you cut through the B.S. and get some real perspective regarding health and training. Please post feedback or questions to Charles directly in the comments below this article.
 
When you set out to improve yourself in the physical realm, it’s easy to get pigeonholed or fixated on the hundreds of rules, programs, and philosophies that exist in the fitness world.
 

read more

Life Ain't Easy: Train Anyway

You have two choices: Find comfort in excuses or attack training obstacles head on.

Most of us spent a huge portion of our childhood being told to do things we didn’t want to do. We had to be told every day to get out of bed, get ready for school, eat our vegetables, do our homework, brush our teeth. And on it went on for years, until we finally struck out on our own in the world, fully capable of doing it all for ourselves.

 

read more

Water Burns: Tread Water to Lose Fat

For maximum calorie burn and minimal impact, nothing works like treading water.
I’ve been a big guy all of my life. I was that awkward kid in junior high who was taller and definitely heavier than every kid in my class. Naturally, I migrated to football and found my home at center. Big guys are necessary on the offensive line, but what happens when you aren’t suiting up for a game on Saturday and don’t need that weight to tackle an opponent?
 

read more

Transform Takeout: Homemade Beef and Broccoli for Athletes

This version of the classic Chinese food takeout dish won't weigh you down.

When you’re an athlete, weekend mornings are often met with long training sessions, events, or races. A well-balanced Friday night dinner of good carbohydrates, lean protein, and healthy fats is key to making sure that you wake up feeling fresh and ready to move.

 

read more

A 12-Week GPP Programme for Kettlebell Sport Athletes

GPP training keeps you healthy, injury-free, and away from boredom. Tailor a programme to suit your needs with this simple template.

I often get asked what the best form of general physical preparedness (GPP) for kettlebell sport is. Most people would like a quick “silver bullet” solution and get frustrated by my answer: it depends.

 

The truth is, the variables of exercise selection, intensity, and duration are many. Each athlete is a unique and beautifully complex individual. There isn’t a golden programme that will sort everything out for everyone, and this holds true in kettlebell sport as much as any other discipline.

read more

The Athlete With the Best Brain Wins

The primary purpose of the brain is movement. So what are you doing to train the brain?

read more

The Athlete With the Best Brain Wins

The primary purpose of the brain is movement. So what are you doing to train the brain?

read more

Size, Strength, or Power? A Training Method Primer

Understanding the intricacies of different protocols will equip you for success in the gym.

What is your ultimate goal: to gain size, strength, or power? Do your workouts reflect that goal? Or do you train blindly without any rhyme or reason?

 

read more

Size, Strength, or Power? A Training Method Primer

Understanding the intricacies of different protocols will equip you for success in the gym.

What is your ultimate goal: to gain size, strength, or power? Do your workouts reflect that goal? Or do you train blindly without any rhyme or reason?

 

read more

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Basic Moves For Crushing Your Lower Abs

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Tired of not having that six pack you always dreamed of? Your lower abs are the most challenging to tone up. Body fat seems to settle in the lower abdominal section and if you want your muscles to show you’re going to have to shed every bit of that fat. Strict diets can help but the biggest secret is the workout.

Hundreds of sit-ups and crunches aren’t going to get you there. You’ll have to retrain your muscles from various angles and diversify all of your workouts.

If your lower abs are shredded, you’ve been doing hard work and it shows. While some people may appear to have been born with a naturally tiny waist and toned abdominal muscles, the rest of us have to work for it. Months or years of diligent workouts can pay off, however, with consistent training and clean eating you’re sure to reach your goals.

Here are four simple exercises that can help you crush your lower abs and show off those abs in no time.

Hanging Reverse Crunches

This is a challenging alternative to crunches. You’ll have to hand from a bar with your knees and bring your knees up to the front of your body while keeping your arms straight. Then you’ll learn slightly forward and squeeze your abs. Raise your knees up toward your head and return your starting point. While intense, they will help to restore those six packs.

Leg Raises

This was designed as a strength training exercise and it’s ideal for beginners as well as advanced lifters. It’s effective to build up thick strong abs. Lie on your back and keep your legs straight. Place your arms at your sides and slowly raise your legs while you’re flexing your abs. Hold the contraction for several seconds and return to your starting position. keeping the abs tight during the entire motion this will help your body tone up those muscles. Increase your sets and make it more challenging by changing it up to seated, hanging and other positions. You could also add weight to the exercise.

Bench Crunch Crush

A variation of the hanging reverse crunch, this is done on a regular basis to strengthen the core muscles. It will tone the lower abs and help to burn off fat. Simply use a bench on the vertical with elbow rests and place your body in the hanging position. Lift the knees high and keep the abs tense. Lower the knees in a controlled movement.

Cable Crunches

Include these in the workout as well. They will target both lower and upper abs. To begin tie a rope to the pulley or to the lat pulldown machine. Use your hand or your wrist against your head a hold the rope. Lean over and tighten the abs. Bring the elbows to the mid of the thighs and squeeze hard. Return to the starting point. Hold this as long as possible and repeat. Remember, use enough weight to affect the results. Begin with light weight weights and gradually increase them as you go for best results. Choose loads that allow you to do this slowly with proper form at all times.

The post Basic Moves For Crushing Your Lower Abs appeared first on NUTRITION CLUB CANADA.





from The Nutrition Club http://thenutritionclub.blogspot.com/2016/03/basic-moves-for-crushing-your-lower-abs.html

Is The Market Ready For Organic Products? Not Quite Yet

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A recent study published by the Journal of Food Products revealed that the awareness is there, unfortunately, it is not as diversified as previously expected.

Organic products have recently been touted as the ideal food item to steer people away from chemically-laced food products  as well as the healthy benefits that it entails. Major food retail chains have already joined in the organic bandwagon by coming up by stocking up on organic vegetables and meat, lowering prices and offering discounts.

Researchers, however, were surprised to find out that retail stores that were selling most of these organic products are those belonging to the Upper East and West neighbourhoods of  Manhattan- the more affluent section of Manhattan’s residential communities.

Their research involved food sales across Manhattan by painstakingly visiting 1,256 stores in terms of location, sale of organic products and comparison of organic and conventional food products sold.

Study co-author Carolyn Dimitri of the New York University’s Food Studies Program, said that their study revealed that only a few stores had wide range of organic food selections on their shelves and seemed to be concentrated mostly on a few select neighbourhoods, rather than the broad expanse of which it was previously expected by the industry.

Dimitri pointed out that only an average of 5 organic products were found a tenth of all the stores visited and these products are lettuce, yoghurt, milk, eggs and cheese.

The believe that many retailers would rather stack up on products with higher turnover and costs less to have them sold, especially in Manhattan as real estate values for places like New York place a premium on products that are being displayed for sale.

This also factors in costs of organic products that are priced higher compared to conventional food products.

The Organic Consumer’s Association on the other hand, indicated that seeing these products in the more affluent sections of the community does not mean that people could not afford to buy these products, rather, it is more on the widespread confusion of consumer interests and budget.

This is not just because organic products are rare, consumer perspectives still prevail over awareness on organics simply because they command a higher price, adding that it is more than just demand, it is making it more affordable and accessible to the general population.

Image Credit: Organic Foods Still Aren’t As Mass Market As You Might Think – NPR 

The post Is The Market Ready For Organic Products? Not Quite Yet appeared first on NUTRITION CLUB CANADA.





from The Nutrition Club http://thenutritionclub.blogspot.com/2016/03/is-market-ready-for-organic-products.html

Are Depression Studies On The Right Track?

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Researchers may be barking up the wrong tree as scientists are looking at entirely different factors that cause depression, claiming that there is evidence to suggest that this condition is caused by life events and circumstances rather than biological or genetic.

This, after psychologists claimed that too much emphasis is being made on genetic profiling and biological testing when it could have been re channeled to put more effort into identifying and studying the real causes of depression if the research community wants to get ahead in their quest to find answers.

Clinical Psychology Professor Peter KInderman from the Liverpool University said that numerous independent studies and researches are one in declaring that the cause of depression are the least studied from social factors that cause it.

In the United Kingdom alone, spending on mental health issues reach a staggering 70 billion British pounds according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.

The group also claimed that mental health factored in more than 40 percent of 470,000 new disability benefit claims every year and almost half of adults are expected to suffer from a mental health condition at least once in their lives and one in every four are diagnosed with a mental health issue, mostly depression.

Unfortunately, Medical Research Council only spends as much as 3 percent of their budget appropriations for the study of mental health conditions, while it has spent a lot on funding studies on biology and genetics of mental illness with little success to speak of, while not much has been spent for research on social factors.

In the United States, the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) reported that more than 14.8 million Americans are affected by major depressive disorder or roughly about 6..7 percent of the country’s population of those aged 18 and older, every year.

Although major depressive problems occur at any time and at any age, the average age based on statistics is 32 and is more likely to occur in women than in men.

Those suffering from depression are more likely to develop heart conditions even heart attack compare to those without any history of the illness and worse, higher risk of death in the event of a second attack.

Globally, depression is the third ranking workplace issues and cost estimates for losses in the US alone amounting to almost $100 billion every year due to lost productivity, absences  and medical expenditures.

Image Credit: Depression is ‘triggered by life traumas, NOT genes’: Experts warn too much money is spent on researching biological factors – Daily Mail

The post Are Depression Studies On The Right Track? appeared first on NUTRITION CLUB CANADA.





from The Nutrition Club http://thenutritionclub.blogspot.com/2016/03/are-depression-studies-on-right-track.html

Vinegar Can Aid Weight Loss, Experts Say

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We have heard a lot of benefits that one can get from vinegar- from the treatment minor skin sores to common household disinfectant – but did you know that vinegar can also help in weight loss?

That is, if you are patient enough to allow it to take effect, according to Carol S. Johnston, associate director for the Arizona State University nutrition program, reacting to the recent popularity on claims of vinegar as an effective appetite suppressant and weight loss tool.

This may have been the result of a 2009 Japanese study of obese adults participated in tests that allowed them to consume 5 to 10 ML of apple cider vinegar mixed in a daily beverage and lost two to four pounds in 3 months, compared to those who did not.

Dr. Johnston said that they acknowledge the fact that there have been studies proving that people taking at least small amounts of vinegar before meals prepared mostly with starchy foods like rice, white breads or sugars could impact the production of blood glucose levels in the body and as it partially inhibits the digestion of starch that reduces the glycemic response by 20 to 40 percent.

Vinegar works in such as way that once it comes in contact with the starch it binds itself with the molecules and causing some portions of the starch to take on a fibre-like structure that escapes digestion.

It also causes a person to feel full for longer periods of time as it leaves a sensation of satiety and helps curb down appetite for food.

Dr. Johnston, however, pointed out not to take this as a secret weapon for weight loss as there are people who are either allergic to vinegar or have different body responses once it is ingested like feelings of nausea or dizziness.

Vinegar would be more palatable or taste better when diluted  in juice or water and further cautions that vinegar is still not established as a part of nutritional recommendations by the American Diabetes Association.

Vinegar contains acetic acid that has potent biological effects as it contains amounts of potassium, amino acids and antioxidants.

Acetic acid in vinegar also had antimicrobial properties and kills bacteria, preventing them from multiplying further. It also has been used numerous times as a natural preservative and disinfectant.

Vinegar may not be the only answer to weight loss, but surely gives everyone the idea that it is being used and can be used for such purposes.

The post Vinegar Can Aid Weight Loss, Experts Say appeared first on NUTRITION CLUB CANADA.





from The Nutrition Club http://thenutritionclub.blogspot.com/2016/03/vinegar-can-aid-weight-loss-experts-say.html

5 Injury Prevention Exercises to Build Bulletproof Athletes

The most important job of a strength coach is to help reduce injury both on and off the field.

As strength coaches, the athlete’s health should be our top priority. The role of a strength coach is to prepare athletes to play their sport and compete through strength and conditioning programs that are developed to elevate their athleticism.

 

read more

Learn the Rules, Then Break Them

The fitness industry is all about creating rules, but you can break all of them and still succeed.
Charles is here on a weekly basis to help you cut through the B.S. and get some real perspective regarding health and training. Please post feedback or questions to Charles directly in the comments below this article.
 
When you set out to improve yourself in the physical realm, it’s easy to get pigeonholed or fixated on the hundreds of rules, programs, and philosophies that exist in the fitness world.
 

read more

5 Injury Prevention Exercises to Build Bulletproof Athletes

The most important job of a strength coach is to help reduce injury both on and off the field.

As strength coaches, the athlete’s health should be our top priority. The role of a strength coach is to prepare athletes to play their sport and compete through strength and conditioning programs that are developed to elevate their athleticism.

 

read more

Learn the Rules, Then Break Them

The fitness industry is all about creating rules, but you can break all of them and still succeed.
Charles is here on a weekly basis to help you cut through the B.S. and get some real perspective regarding health and training. Please post feedback or questions to Charles directly in the comments below this article.
 
When you set out to improve yourself in the physical realm, it’s easy to get pigeonholed or fixated on the hundreds of rules, programs, and philosophies that exist in the fitness world.
 

read more

Life Ain't Easy: Train Anyway

You have two choices: Find comfort in excuses or attack training obstacles head on.

Most of us spent a huge portion of our childhood being told to do things we didn’t want to do. We had to be told every day to get out of bed, get ready for school, eat our vegetables, do our homework, brush our teeth. And on it went on for years, until we finally struck out on our own in the world, fully capable of doing it all for ourselves.

 

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Life Ain't Easy: Train Anyway

You have two choices: Find comfort in excuses or attack training obstacles head on.

Most of us spent a huge portion of our childhood being told to do things we didn’t want to do. We had to be told every day to get out of bed, get ready for school, eat our vegetables, do our homework, brush our teeth. And on it went on for years, until we finally struck out on our own in the world, fully capable of doing it all for ourselves.

 

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Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Are Deadlifts For Everyone?

 

I love deadlifts. My clients love deadlifts—all of them. Once, when I overheard a woman in my gym say that she didn’t like deadlifts, it made me so sad! Learning that she had small hands that made lifting the bar extraordinarily difficult for her, I immediately bought a smaller bar just for her. Now she loves deadlifts, too.

 

I like to believe deadlifts are for (almost) everyone. They are just too great to not be.

 

What Makes Deadlifts So Great?

 

The most basic answer is that the movement you do when deadlifting—the hip hinge—is the fundamental movement that underlies all physical performance. Want to run faster, jump higher, be able to pick up your kids or grandkids with ease? Improve your hip hinge.

 

In case that’s not enough to convince you, though, the hip hinge also strengthens your entire backside, referred to as the “posterior chain.” In a world of sitters, this is a good thing. All that sitting can stretch and weaken the muscles of the posterior chain, from your shoulders all the way to your legs. Deadlifting can give them a new lease on life.

 

Lastly, once you learn how to properly do a deadlift, it just feels awesome. When you stand up after lifting a heavy* weight, you can’t help but feel strong and powerful. It’s a pretty great feeling!

 

*  “Heavy” is relative to the strength of the person lifting the weight. Any weight that challenges you is heavy.

 

Are You Ready for Deadlifts? That Depends on Your Hip Hinge.

 

Now that you know why you should be deadlifting, let’s talk about whether or not you’re ready to deadlift. I use the hip-hinge test to find out with my clients. I mentioned briefly above that the hip hinge is an important movement at the foundation of all physical performance, and that it’s a big part of deadlifts.  Literally, it means bending over at the hips. The key is that you bend with the hips, not with the back. While this sounds easy, many people have a remarkably hard time doing it

 

Interestingly, I’ve found that men are more likely than women to have a hard time with the hip hinge. That’s not to say that all women rock the hip hinge right away, but I do find that most of the people who really struggle with the deadlift are men.

 

Wondering how you would do with the hip hinge? Watch the video below and try it.

 

 

Now, here are some things you should be shooting for in a nice hip hinge:

 

  • Bending from the hips, which means that your hips will shift backwards.
  • The shift backward, however, is not so great that it pulls the knees behind the ankles. That becomes a combination hip and ankle hinge, which is not ideal. Make sure that the knees stay in front of the ankles.
  • The back holds the same position throughout the movement. This means the low back does not round at all. In fact, for most people there will be a small arch. This also means that any arch that is there does not get bigger.
  • The shoulders do not reach toward the floor as the torso moves toward parallel. Keep your shoulders in place by keeping your lats engaged.
  • The knees move, but much less than the hips do, and usually after the hips.
  • The feet are firmly planted throughout the movement.
  • The movement does not elicit pain.

 

While running through this checklist, also make sure that you can bend over to the point where your back is almost parallel to the floor without the dowel losing contact with your head, upper back or butt. Sometimes it can be hard to feel if the bar is touching all three points. If you find that to be the case, then have someone watch and give you feedback, or record yourself doing the hip hinge so that you can see for yourself.

 

If you lose one of the points of contact during the hip hinge test, does this mean you shouldn’t deadlift? Not necessarily. It just means that you have to work on it until you are able to. Then you should deadlift.

 

Also, if the movement hurts to perform, don’t ignore it! If your back hurts when you do a hip hinge, see if correcting these things above makes it not hurt. If it doesn’t, then before proceeding with deadlifts, please go see your doctor or a physical therapist (or a chiropractor, athletic therapist, or osteopath) and get things checked out.

 

Try This If You Need to Fix Your Hip Hinge.

 

Practicing the hip hinge test is one way to work on it. Only go as low as you can while maintaining the three points of contact, and over time, you will likely find that you are able to get a greater range of motion while doing so. You should also find that it feels easier and more natural.

 

For some, however, if you don’t get the movement the first few times you try it, the above hip-hinge test might not be the best teaching tool for you. In the video below, you can see another option I use to teach the hip hinge at my gym:

 

 

It’s Deadlift Time!

 

Once you have mastered the hinge, it’s time to move to the deadlift. Starting with kettlebell deadlifts will allow you to learn the movement with a lighter weight and from a slight elevation. On some kettlebells, the handle sits slightly higher off of the floor than a regular bar with regular plates do. If you’re starting with a kettlebell on which the handle is still too low, place the kettlebell on a riser or low box to achieve a comfortable starting position. Depending how this goes, you can determine what the best deadlift option is for you. Here’s a video explanation of performing a kettlebell deadlift:

 

 

If everything looks and feels good, then regular deadlifts are in the cards for you. Start increasing the weight of the kettlebell, and once you run out of kettlebells, it’s time to move to the bar. Watch this video to find out how.

 

 

Equipment Considerations

 

The standard radius (distance from the hole in the middle to the edge) of a 45-pound weight plate is 8.75 inches (225 mm). So, when you lift with those plates on, the bar sits 8.75 inches off of the floor. Deadlifting with this setup is called “pulling from the floor” or “deadlifting from the floor” and is considered the full range of motion for this exercise. Most lighter weight plates are also smaller in size, this means that for a proper deadlift setup at most gyms, you have to start at 135 pounds (a standard bar is 45 pounds).

 

If you train at a gym that has bumper plates and a women’s barbell for you to use as a starting point, lucky you! A bumper plate is a weight that has the standard 45-pound plate radius but is lighter, ranging anywhere from 10 to 45 pounds. The women’s barbell is even better, not because it is lighter (35 pounds instead of 45), but because it has a smaller circumference, meaning it is easier to grip for people with smaller hands. If available to you, this equipment will allow you to start doing deadlifts with only 55 pounds and progress from there.

 

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If you don’t have access to this equipment, there are other options to help you get started lifting with a setup that gets you the right distance from the bar. Start with lighter plates, but place the loaded barbell on a riser of some sort. What you use will depend on what you have available. You may be able to set the safety arms or pins low enough on the squat rack, or you may be able to place the barbell on some weight plates (if they are flat). Because most people tend to round their backs as they reach down lower, setting the bar to the proper starting height is important when using lighter weights.

 

If you have small hands and find that your grip fails before you get to do much work with your butt, legs, upper back, and core, consider using straps to help you hold the bar. Some suggest that using straps is “cheating.” I disagree, especially for people with small hands. Remember my client with small hands? Getting a smaller bar made all of the difference for her. Seriously—ask your gym to bring in some women’s bars. You undoubtedly aren’t the only woman in the gym who wants them. If a smaller bar isn’t available, using straps is perfectly acceptable as you build your grip strength.

 

The Five Most Common Deadlift Problems And How to Fix Them

 

There’s a pretty good chance that your deadlift won’t look perfect right away. That’s OK—it just means you have a bit of work to do before deadlifts become your new favourite exercise. I want to share with you the cues and corrections I use to help my clients achieve great deadlift form. In fact, I have found that most deadlift form issues fall into one of these five areas:

 

Hips Sinking Too Low

 

 

Rounding the Lower Back

 

 

Bending the Knee Too Much

 

 

Not Finishing the Lift

 

 

Flaring the Rib Cage

 

 

There’s actually a sixth form issue that I didn’t address in these videos, and that is not keeping the feet firmly planted. If any part of your foot comes off the floor while deadlifting, you are losing stability and limiting yourself. If you’re not sure if you do this, consider deadlifting without shoes to get a better feel. Some cues that can help include “crush the floor,” “screw your feet into the floor,” and “spread the floor with your feet.”

 

What If You Try All of That and You Still Struggle?

 

I want to share a little secret with you: You don’t have to deadlift from the floor. The truth is that the 8.75-inch full range of motion setup is based on a manufacturing decision that has nothing to do with deadlifts. It is actually related to the size of your head! The size of a 45-pound weight plate was designed for Olympic weightlifting, where people lift bars over head with speed. The standard height of 8.75 inches was determined as a precaution to prevent a crushed skull in the event of a lift gone wrong. That’s an excellent design feature for Olympic weightlifting, but it has no real relevance to deadlifts.

 

In fact, it is very possible that your body is not designed to deadlift from 8.75 inches off the floor. I know this for certain, as I’ve tested my clients, measuring their arm, torso, thigh, and shin lengths and used Adobe Photoshop to draw diagram representations of their structures. (Oops! My “engineer” is showing!) There are significant differences between the lengths of our limbs, and this can have a big impact on whether your body is structurally capable of deadlifting with good form from 8.75 inches off of the floor.

 

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If you can’t get your back to stay straight in a deadlift…

 

 

  • Add just enough of a riser to fix your form. Make this your deadlift setup for two weeks, while you focus on perfect form. Add weight as it becomes more comfortable.
  • Add some exercises to work on hip, ankle, and thoracic spine range of motion.
  • After one month, lower the deadlift weight back to where it was two weeks ago, remove the riser, and try to lift with perfect form. Can you? If so, great! Build from there. If not, that’s OK. Remember that “full range of motion” is an arbitrary standard, and it may not apply to you. Go back to the riser and continue to use it as you enjoy and excel at deadlifting.

 

If you can’t get your hips up…

 

 

  • If a regular deadlift just doesn’t feel great for you, it may be that your structure is better suited to Sumo deadlifts. Give it a try. If it feels great, awesome! Make that your standard. (Thanks to Nia Shanks for this video.)

 

If deadlifts bother your low back…

 

  • Your back may  just be adapting to the exercise. Deadlifts are a great, full-body exercise, and even though the back is not actively moving (remember it should stay straight), it is involved in holding the weight. This may be more work than your back is used to, which can result in muscle soreness. My advice is to pay attention to the level of soreness over a few sessions. If it is just a matter of your back adapting to the work, then the soreness will decrease with each subsequent training session, and should eventually reduce to almost zero.
  • Something may be “off” with your form. Review the form issues discussed above to see if there’s a correction that helps. If soreness stays the same or increases, you may need to do a little more work on perfecting your form. If none of the corrections from the videos help, then it’s a good idea to work with a qualified trainer to help you sort this out. If this is not an option for you, and you can’t work with someone who can monitor and coach you to a place in which you feel great doing deadlifts, then I hate to say it, but deadlifting may not be your best bet right now. It’s OK—there are other excellent exercises out there!
  • Your back might just not feel great when you deadlift. It’s not soreness, and it’s not about your form. They just don’t feel right. If this is you, I suggest you book an appointment with a good manual therapist (physical therapist, chiropractor, athletic therapist, or massage therapist) for an evaluation, to see if they can see or feel anything that may be contributing to this. They may find something, work on it, and that may help you get to a place where deadlifts feel great. Or they might not be able to help at all. Again, it’s OK—you have a lot of other excellent exercises at your disposal.

 

How’s your deadlift now? My hope is that, after implementing these tips, all of the former deadlift skeptics out there become fans, and that all of the deadlift fans come to love—and get more out of—deadlifts than they did before. The deadlift is truly the foundation of strength and total-body performance. Happy deadlifting!

 

 

Benefits Of Adding Cayenne Pepper To Your Diet

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If you enjoy spicy foods, you have probably had foods with cayenne pepper. When it comes to cayenne pepper, you either hate it or you love it, depending on your tolerance for heat. The capsaicin in this veggie offers numerous medicinal benefits, including fat loss. Numerous studies have shown that red cayenne peppers help curb your appetite and increase metabolism. This is especially true for those who do not often enjoy spicy foods.

Thermogenic Effects of Cayenne Peppers

The capsaicin found in cayenne peppers offer a thermogenic effect. By including cayenne peppers in your diet, you can increase your core body temperature. An increased body temperature increases metabolism, an increased capability to burn the fat stored in your body and improving the ability to process foods. Finally, capsaicin is an appetite suppressant and is often used to help curb hunger.

Glucose Control

When you eat meals with a lot of carbs, a spike in blood sugar levels occur. This is especially true for foods that have a high glycemic index rating. An increase in glucose levels can cause a number of negative effects on the body, including fat gain and unstable energy levels. When glucose levels spike, you often experience excess energy. Then, as your glucose levels plummet, you will experience fatigue and tiredness. Additionally, carbs are addictive, which can cause you to crave more and more of them, which can not only cause you to gain weight but also negatively impact your health over time.

One way of to avoid sudden blood sugar spikes is to add cayenne pepper to your meal, especially if it contains a lot of carbs or sugars. Additionally, cayenne pepper helps you feel fuller for a longer period of time.

Detox

Cayenne is a natural detoxification agent. When you cayenne, you can help pull toxins from the body. Detoxification helps improve your metabolic rate, which in turn helps you burn more calories and lose weight.

The post Benefits Of Adding Cayenne Pepper To Your Diet appeared first on NUTRITION CLUB CANADA.





from The Nutrition Club http://thenutritionclub.blogspot.com/2016/03/benefits-of-adding-cayenne-pepper-to.html

Two exciting announcements!

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You may have noticed that things have been quiet around here. Maybe record-setting quiet? Either way, I think I have some ‘splanin to do!

In my last post I mentioned that we’ve been busy as bees behind the scenes building something really special. If you subscribe to our newsletter, you were the first to find out that we’re getting ready to launch the gorgeous Oh She Glows recipe app! The dream we’ve had in the works for years and years is finally happening and I can’t wait to share it with you guys. Keep your eyes peeled for our official launch in the very near future!

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What I haven’t shared yet is that I’ve been creating something else, too. As grueling as the app work has been, this work has been even more exciting, exhausting, and life-changing. I’ve been lying awake for hours at night thinking about it. During the day, my thoughts are filled with vinegar-soaked cucumbers (seriously), these fruit chews, and 8:30 pm bedtimes.

Any guesses?

You got it: we’re expecting our second baby this September! That’s right…a second cookbook and a second baby will be dropping (well, hopefully not literally!) in September 2016. Our timing is impeccable, I know. But, joking aside, we always hoped to have our children close in age so we’re very grateful about the spacing; my due date is roughly two years since we brought Adriana home from the hospital.

My main worry right now, aside from the well-being of our little ones and state of this world, is how we’re going to take care of a two-year-old and a newborn. I’m expecting a loss of sanity for the first several months…or decades?! There will be an adjustment period for sure (especially when you add these lovely toddler temper tantrums into the mix), but if Adriana treats her sibling anything like she treats her favourite “baby” doll (lots of doting and kisses), I think it will all work out in the end! We just need to teach her that eye poking and head dropping probably aren’t the best approaches with an actual newborn. Baby steps, people.

I spent the first few months of 2016 revamping and shooting a ton of fan-favourite recipes and photos for our new recipe app. It was an intense few months when I didn’t want to be anywhere near food, but I also enjoyed being distracted with a totally new project! It kept me going. When I wasn’t immersed in the app project (and cookbook editing), I was collapsed on the couch and often feeling down and out (the first trimester blues hit me with both pregnancies, unfortunately). So while things have been quiet on the blog, they certainly haven’t been behind the scenes. Plus, I didn’t think you needed a recipe for salt and vinegar chips, popcorn, dill pickles, mustard-covered veggies (ew), cereal, nut butter and jam toast, or how to convince your husband to pick up a container of vegan caramel chocolate chunk ice cream during a cold snap. (…Or do you?!) Because that’s basically what I lived off of for a month or two. Oh, there was also that day when I decided to drink all the juice from my Bubbies Sauerkraut jar. I didn’t want to eat the actual sauerkraut, just drink the juice. I’m pretty sure Eric was ready to commit me!!! I haven’t touched sauerkraut since. Actually, I think I’ve been banned from buying it in North America.

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Now that I’m in the second trimester, I’m slowly getting my mojo back (case in point: I changed out of my sweats for the photo above). Workouts have returned to my life on a regular basis which feels like a damn miracle, and the nausea is starting to fade a bit. The good news is that the app is almost finished, my second cookbook will be heading to the printers shortly, and I’m ready to get back into the swing of things—well, maybe after a much-needed break first.

Of course, I also have some delicious food to share with you soon. Eric strongly discouraged the dill pickle soup recipe I was dreaming up, so with some serious restraint, I moved on to Plan B. This post is already much too wordy, so I’m going to have to share the recipe in a separate post. Stay tuned for the recipe!!! It’s a great one, and I promise it’s worth the wait.

Debunking Myths We Thought Were True

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There are still a lot for fitness and health myths that people still believe to be factual, which in fact are not, often causing frustration or more harm than good.

As legends and stories go, people have their unique brand of ‘knowledge’ they feel are helpful as they put one or two ideas together then sharing it as gospel truth for others to follow.

However, one needs to be more careful and cautious about following these ideas blindly that could not only affect your perception or beliefs, but may also cause harm, especially when it comes to health and fitness.

Here are some of those myths that need your careful attention and those you need to be aware of.

Crunches are the best way to lose fat and give you flat abs. Experts agree that crunches are the iconic exercise to target the abs, it is the least effective in burning fat and only provide little impact on the abdominal muscles.

The more you perspire, the more you fat gets burned. Perspiring is more of the body’s way to cool the body, rather than an indicator of fat being washed out of the system. You may sweat out in buckets but still have the same amount of body fat.

Running can cause knee injuries. On the contrary, running in itself may actually help strengthen the joints and knees by allowing the joints to be lubricated. But although there are people at risk of getting knee injury or joint problems due to factors like weight, hormones or hereditary joint-centered problems, experts suggest that a total body workout be included in the regular jogging activity to prevent joint problems to stop you from running.

Stretching allows the body to recover quickly. Many believe that stretching exercises during pre and post workouts help in the recovery of muscles. However, studies have shown that blood lactate levels that help restore and refresh muscles do not show any difference. Although there are some benefits to stretching and limbering that helps prepare the muscles during pre workouts, it can only do so much as promote the blood flow throughout the body and helps increase joint flexibility.

The body needs at least 45 minutes of exercise to start getting health benefits. This is not true, in fact, it is not the exercise that causes it but the cardiovascular activity that follows every active movement or routines. You may sit in a sauna for 1 hour and only sweat out the perspiration and liquid from your body but not lose any weight.

It is important to be aware of health myths that we still believe and may help guide us in doing the right things instead of working on the wrong ones.

The post Debunking Myths We Thought Were True appeared first on NUTRITION CLUB CANADA.





from The Nutrition Club http://thenutritionclub.blogspot.com/2016/03/debunking-myths-we-thought-were-true.html

Water Burns: Tread Water to Lose Fat

For maximum calorie burn and minimal impact, nothing works like treading water.
I’ve been a big guy all of my life. I was that awkward kid in junior high who was taller and definitely heavier than every kid in my class. Naturally, I migrated to football and found my home at center. Big guys are necessary on the offensive line, but what happens when you aren’t suiting up for a game on Saturday and don’t need that weight to tackle an opponent?
 

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Transform Takeout: Homemade Beef and Broccoli for Athletes

This version of the classic Chinese food takeout dish won't weigh you down.

When you’re an athlete, weekend mornings are often met with long training sessions, events, or races. A well-balanced Friday night dinner of good carbohydrates, lean protein, and healthy fats is key to making sure that you wake up feeling fresh and ready to move.

 

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3 Ways to Make Your Workout Program Work for You

 

You know what sucks? Workouts that don’t work. That aren’t fun. That don’t make you excited to hit the gym, the trail, or the yoga mat.

I should know. I’ve totally been there. I’ve bounced around between figure competitions, dabbling in powerlifting, and grinding away doing hours of cardio every week, just trying to find something that worked for me.

And I know I’m not the only one. At Girls Gone Strong, we regularly get emails from women complaining about how much they hate their training and aren’t getting the results they want. It’s an absolute drag to do things in the gym that don’t bring you joy and don’t serve your health and your body. Trying to find something that meets these criteria can be a huge source of frustration.

It has taken me years to figure out how to design a training program that is all-encompassing: program that’s fun, that makes me smile, that keeps me healthy, and that gets me exactly where I want to be, goal-wise (granted goals change all of the time). But, even though it took a while, I did figure it out. I got there.

You can get there, too, and I want to help you. Here are three must-follow tips when it comes to crafting a program that will truly work for you:

 

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1. Be Honest About Your Ability Level

First and foremost, you must choose both exercises and a workout protocol that match your ability level. If it’s your first day in the gym, you don’t need to be doing reverse band deficit speed deadlifts with chains, got it?

Even if it’s not your first day in the gym, you need to respect your individual capabilities and choose exercises accordingly. If you want to squat, there are countless squat variations from which to choose, and I promise you it’s possible to find one that you find both appropriately challenging and fun. You’ve got bodyweight squats, goblet squats, single-leg squats, barbell back squats, front squats.The options are endless.

It’s also important to keep in mind that every day will be slightly different for you depending on what’s going on in your life and with your body. There are some days that I can rock out 20 reps of the dumbbell bench press with the 50-pound dumbbells, and on other days I feel like I might get crushed after just six reps.

Some days your favorite exercise might not be right for you, even if it’s what is prescribed in that workout. For example, at our friends’ Jen Sinkler and David Dellanave’s gym, The Movement Minneapolis, they do a baseline range-of-motion (ROM) test followed by multiple ROM tests to find the movement, the tool, the load, and the position or variation for the exercises they are going to perform that day. They use biofeedback, as this approach is called, to customize their programming to not just a client’s overall ability level, but their ability level on a specific day, decreasing risk of injury while increasing their performance.

Whether you use an approach like biofeedback, or simply have a gut feeling as you’re warming up that this isn’t your day for a particular exercise, it’s OK. Give it a rest and choose something else. Live to fight (and get stronger) another day.

 

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2. Pick a Goal

This one sounds pretty obvious, right? But you’d be surprised how often I see women who want to look better, feel better, and feel strong—and they are working themselves into the ground with two-a-day workouts every day, intense WODs six days a week, or ultramarathon training.

To be perfectly clear: If that is what you want to do for your training, then by all means, do not let me stop you.

However, if that’s you, be honest with yourself and acknowledge that your main priority is running that ultramarathon—not necessarily to looking and feeling your best and strongest. Different types of training lead to different performance and physical results.

I say this because the majority of women who come to us just want the three things I mentioned above: to look better, feel better, and feel strong and capable.

Guess what? We actually know the training formula that will help most women reach those goals. Wanna know what it is? Here you go:

  • Strength training two to three times a week, generally lasting 45 to 50 minutes
  • High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)/Metabolic Conditioning one to two times a week, generally lasting five to 10 minutes
  • Moderate Intensity Cardio (MIC) one to two times a week, generally lasting about 30 minutes, with your heart rate at 120 to 150 bpm.

Keep in mind that some of these days can be combined to allow for two to three full days off each week. Of course, nutrition, sleep, and stress management also play a huge role.

Additionally, it’s important to remember that those strength workouts, HIIT workouts, and MIC workouts won’t look the same for everyone because you must take into account ability level ((see above!) as well as our next consideration, which is… you guessed it: fun!

 

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3. Mix Things Up to Make It Fun

At GGS,we believe training should be fun. Seriously—how likely is it that you’ll keep training over a long period of time if you hate what you’re doing?

Not us!

While your training program should follow sound training principles with an intelligent exercise selection, set-and-rep schemes, and overall layout to help you get the best results, you should always have options to choose from to ensure that you enjoy what you’re doing. You can do this by having different exercises you can sub in and out of your strength training program in case you’re missing equipment, or are really not “feeling” a particular exercise that day. Have a lot of options for your HIIT and MIC cardio, too, to keep things fresh and fun. This will ensure that you’re consistent over months and years, which we all know is the key to long-term success.

 

What’s Next?

Obviously, you can see that I am extremely passionate about building training programs that fit a person’s ability level, matches her goals, and keeps her having fun in the gym—all while delivering the results she wants with minimal time and effort.

This passion is what spurred Girls Gone Strong to develop The Modern Woman’s Guide to Strength Training. We wanted to create a resource that could help any woman—from a beginner all the way to a high-level intermediate lifter—get leaner, healthier, and stronger. We wanted this resource to help women learn everything they need to know about strength training in a format that is easy to understand and implement.

Over the years we have received so many emails saying:

“I want to start working out, but I just don’t know how. I don’t know where to start, and I can’t afford a personal trainer.”

“I’ve been training for a couple of years, but I’m stuck in a rut and don’t know what to do next. Can you help?”

“I want to get leaner and stronger. I’m currently lifting six days per week, taking two spin classes, and one hot yoga class a week. Oh, and I run during my lunch break every day. What do you suggest?”

We wanted to be able to help each of these women by providing a valuable, yet affordable solution.

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For one-third to one-sixth of what it would cost to hire a trainer for a month, The Modern Woman’s Guide To Strength Training includes:

  • The Modern Woman’s Guide To Strength Training Getting Started Guide:This program comes with a LOT of information, but the it will walk you through everything step-by-step.
  • The Modern Woman’s Guide To Strength Training Manual:This guide explains what strength training is, why it’s important, a glossary of strength training terms, and need-to-know information about recovery, sleep, and stress management.
  • The Modern Woman’s Guide To Strength Training Programs: Three 16-week training programs for beginners, intermediates, and high-level intermediates (with multiple options for every single exercise in case you want to make a substitution).
  • The Modern Woman’s Guide To Strength Training Video Library: 90 minutes of high-definition video with me coaching fellow GGS co-founder Alli McKee through 70 different exercises. I will discuss proper form as well as common mistakes and how to correct them.
  • The Modern Woman’s Guide To Strength Training Exercise Glossary:A written version of The Modern Woman’s Guide To Strength Training Video Library for quick reference, in case you forget how a particular exercise is performed while you’re at the gym.
  • The Modern Woman’s Guide To Strength Training Progress Tracker:A progress-tracking guide where you can track measurements, weight (if desired), mood, sleep, stress level, strength level, energy level, etc., so that you can get a comprehensive picture of what’s going on with your body.

If you’re interested, we also offer The Modern Woman’s Guide To Good Nutrition Package, written by GGS Advisory Board Member Dr. Cassandra Forsythe, PhD, RD. The nutrition upgrade package includes:

  • The Modern Woman’s Guide To Good Nutrition Manual: This is an 18-chapter manual with everything you need to know about nutrition, from caloric requirements and ideal macronutrient ratios to recommended food sources and beverages to medications that could interfere with your progress.
  • The Modern Woman’s Guide To Good Nutrition—Meal Plans: Cassandra recognizes that every woman is different and needs a unique nutrition structure to be successful. Here, she has put together ready-to-go meal plans for fat loss and maintenance at various calorie levels; a FODMAP plan for women with digestive issues; and a Paleo meal plan at multiple calorie levels. She has also outlined multiple “If It Fits Your Macros” (IIFYM) plans for those who prefer that type of eating plan.

Learn more about the The Modern Woman’s Guide To Strength Training.