Tagged in: Exercise

6 Healthy Tips To Start Your Day Off Right!

A healthy morning routine can balance your life in a very effective way. Here are some great tips to start your day off healthily and happily.
 

Wake Up 30 Minutes Early
 
Early risers are more proactive when compared to people who hit the snooze button. Waking up earlier will help you become more energetic so that you can start off with your work immediately. To help with this, set up an alarm, but thirty minutes before your actual alarm time. This way, you’ll be able to take advantage of those extra hours you’ve always wanted in your day.
 
Drink Water With Lemon
 
Take a glass of lukewarm water, squeeze fresh lemon in it, and drink it on an empty stomach. This will help your digestive system run smoothly for the entire day and will help flush toxins out from the body.
 
Breakfast Is a Must
 
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Though a lot of people tend to skip breakfast, sip coffee, and start the day, most of them are unaware of the fact that their bodies need higher energy in the mornings. For instance, a fiber-enriched breakfast including oatmeal porridge topped with almonds or berries may help boost brain activity instantly.
 
Walk, Run or Jump. Just Sweat It Out!
 
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No other time is better to exercise than in the morning. It helps improve your metabolism for the day by elevating it for hours.
 
When you exercise consistently, your endocrine system and circadian rhythms automatically adjust themselves according to your specific exercise timings. This helps you wake up easily as your body is preparing itself for exercise while you are sleeping and the hormones help to prepare your body for exercise by regulating blood flow to your muscles.
 
Take A Shower
 
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Taking cool or warm shower in the morning can refresh you for the entire day. It will make you feel clean for the rest of day and will help boost your confidence.
 
Relax And Meditate
 
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Once you’re done with your breakfast, exercise, and shower, it’s time to calm yourself down before your day begins. Take 10 to 15 minutes, sit on a mat, and relax. Breathe in and out and let go of all the negativity in the morning.
 
Starting off with a healthy and active morning can really make a difference to your overall routine. Doing this will calm your nerves and let you stay relaxed for all the work activities you have planned to carry out during day.

 

 

9 Remarkable Workouts For Swimmers

There are numerous sports which can be done throughout the year like cycling, running or going to the gym. However, swimming is usually associated with the few months of summer only, except if one lives in San Diego. Therefore, it’s an ideal time to seek out some interesting swimming exercises for the coming months. Earl Walton, head coach and owner of Tailwind Endurance (a sports coaching center) states that swimming is an impeccable combination of HIIT (high intensity interval training), cardio, flexibility, and strength. Additionally, it is useful for revitalizing one’s energy without injuries from swimming excessively. Despite the significance of swimming, easy free style laps are dreary.
 
Interestingly, following these 9 types of workouts are worth giving a try:
 
1. Swimming Skills For The Pool
 
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Total Immersion Swimming founder, Terry Laughlin, considers human swimmers “the machines of wasting energy”. His company deals with adults to become buoyant and effective swimmers while starting swimming very late. The average human swimmer uses only 3% of his energy to move forward, whereas, dolphin utilizes 80% energy for the same purpose. It is recommended to specialize in the following skills to enhance lap swimming output. This exercise is developed for pools of 25 meters:
 

  • Perform four laps in a pool for warming up your body. Keep a stroke count and efforts record on the scale of 1-5 in every lap. The objective is to maintain the stroke count and effort at 3 or below in each lap.
  • In this workout, five rounds each with four laps will be performed, each concentrating on a new skill. Each round will begin by doing 4-6 strokes away from the wall and swimming back towards the wall, both with no breathing. This boosts concentration. Repeat this four times and go ahead with the skills.
  • In round one, you have to perform four laps of 25 meters and the first five strokes are to be done without breathing (keep yourself concentrated after you start breathing). Concentrate on dangling your head with full water support in these laps. You will see yourself watching the pool’s bottom view instead of the front view and the head will be weightless.
  • In round two, you have to perform four laps of 25 meters and the first five strokes to be done without breathing (keep yourself concentrated after you start breathing). Concentrate on the way your hands go into water in these laps. You can attempt to make a space on water’s surface with the hand and put the forearm in it just like sliding hand into the mailbox. It will make you feel that the arm is going steeper in the water. Do not make a splash or noise as your arm enters the water.
  • In round three, you have to perform four laps of 25 meters and first five strokes are to be done without breathing (keep yourself concentrated after you start breathing). Concentrate on tall swimming in these laps. After sliding the arm into the water, maximum farther. Try not to cross your arms and move it straight towards the shoulder; a little downward in a way that your hand is below your body and work on excluding bubbles.
  • In round four, you have to perform four laps of 25 meters and first five strokes are to be done without breathing (keep yourself concentrated after you start breathing). You are prohibited from kicking in these laps. Keep your legs to follow you from behind with small effort. Your upper body will perform all the work.
  • In the fifth round, choose your most favorite style from the previous four rounds, redo them, or repeat each one of them for laps of 25 meters.
  • Lastly, redo the warm up process while concentrating on the skills from this workout and observe the comparison among your stroke counts and effort percentages.

 
2. Sprint/ Power Workout In The Ocean
 
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Walton suggests utilizing waves, currents, sand and surf present in the ocean into the workouts. However, it is recommended to take a friend along or notifying lifeguards about the nature of your workout.
 

  • Do 10 minutes of jogging in sand to warm up your body.
  • Do a walk in the ocean, perform 50 straight strokes and come back towards the shore. Repeat thrice.
  • Reach the ocean by running and do 50 hard strokes, then come back softly towards the shore. Repeat thrice.
  • Reach the ocean again by running and take a deep dive, come to the top and do 50 hard strokes. Then come back softly towards the shore. Repeat thrice.
  • Swim along the shore of the ocean for about 10 minutes. Come out, take rest, and repeat.

 
3. Workout Using Alternating Currents In The Ocean
 
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Walton states that the swimmer has to check the direction of current in this workout. For this purpose, enter the ocean by running, do 50-65 strokes and observe the direction of the current (right or left). Start the workout after this.
 

  • Initially, swim hard against the current for about two minutes, then softly with current for 90 seconds. Repeat this four times with no break.
  • Take one minute rest.
  • Swim hard against the current for about four minutes, then softly with the current for three minutes. Repeat this four times with no break.
  • Take one minute rest.
  • Final push: 20 minutes swimming with normal effort against the current, and softly go back to the starting point.

 
4. Sprint Pyramid In Lakes
 
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Although lakes lack big waves or currents, identical rules are applied as those in ocean swimming. Walton suggests to be attentive of the environment and to always take a friend along.
 

  • Do a simple swim for 5-10 minutes parallel to the shore to warm up your body.
  • Do five strokes expeditiously, then five slow long strokes.
  • Do ten strokes expeditiously, then ten slow long strokes.
  • Do fifteen strokes expeditiously, then fifteen slow long strokes.
  • Do twenty strokes expeditiously, then twenty slow long strokes.
  • Move towards the ladder for your return and do five strokes expeditiously, then five slow long strokes to end.

 
5. Racing In The Lake
 
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In this workout, you need a friend for a racing competition with best from seven as suggested by Walton. Select a target on shore and record who arrives at the target first, but do follow the instructions for every race.
 
Remember these points:
 

  • Hands cannot be used.
  • Feet cannot be used.
  • Only swimming on the back is allowed.
  • Head must be kept outside the water throughout.
  • Racer 1 says three, two, one, discloses the stroke or rule of his preference and both will start.
  • Racer 2 says three, two, one, discloses the stroke or rule of his preference and both will start.
  • All the four strokes to be used while swimming in this race (back, freestyle, breast and butterfly).

 
6. Finning in Ocean/Lake
 
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Coach of Canyons Aquatic Club and Speedo, Coley Stickels, says that this workout needs a kickboard and fins set.
 

  • Perform 10 air squats and jumping jacks each and a sprint of 50 meters in water for warmup.
  • Select a target such as buoy or pier at a distance of 75 meters. Swim towards the target and then return to shore. Get your kit, wear the fins, and get the kickboard and return to water. Do a kick swim while holding the kickboard towards the target and return. Repeat the process once more (swim with and with no fins).
  • Stand on the knees in water, run for 15 seconds alongside the shore, and for about 15 seconds swim too. Repeat one time.
  • Perform 10 burpees and pushups each after going to the dry area. Repeat four times.
  • Return to pool, swim hard towards the 75 meter target and come back towards the shore softly.

 
7. In and Out Workout in Pool
 
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This is a lengthy workout developed by Stickels and includes exercises both in and out of pool.
 

  • Enter the water and use any stroke of your choice to swim for 100 meters. Come out of the pool and do 10 burpees. Return to the pool and perform 50 meters freestyle kick or flutter while keeping your arms ahead of you in order to utilize the feet to move forward. Put the hands on pool’s rack in such a way that your back faces the wall. Push yourself to come outside the pool and return to the water easily. Do this five times. Perform the complete process four times beginning with a swim of 100 meters.
  • Perform a solo medley of 100 meters including 25 meters backstroke, freestyle, butterfly, and breaststroke each, and instantaneously do a very hard butterfly of 50 meters.
  • Put the hands on pool’s rack in such a way that your back faces the wall. Push yourself to come outside the pool and return to the water easily. Do this six times.
  • Perform another solo medley of 100 meters, and instantaneously do a very hard backstroke of 50 meters.
  • Lie down on the back and straight legs on the pool deck. Engross the core and vertically lift the legs. Push them upwards and lift the hip from the deck. Bring the legs down slowly to the deck. Repeat six times.
  • Return to the water, and do a solo medley of 100 meters, and instantaneously do a very hard backstroke of 50 meters.
  • Perform six instant pushups on pool deck.
  • Return to the water for the last (fourth) solo medley of 100 meters and end it with a freestyle hard swim of 50 meters.
  • Hold the plank while moving towards pool deck for the maximum time. Take break, repeat the process, and calm yourself by softly swimming for 100 meters.

 
8. Numerous Laps in Pool
 
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This type of workout requires a stopwatch so the swimmer can time himself / herself as recommended by personal trainer, Nick Iwaniuk, who works in Equinox Lincoln Park, Chicago.
 

  • Do 10 spiderman step-ups (begin with plank state with elbows on sides, first lift 1 knee and bring it up to elbow, then lift another), 60 jumping jacks along with air-squats for 20 times. Repeat this thrice.
  • Perform high knees of 10 meters while standing in the shallow side of the pool. Repeat this thrice.
  • Make dolphin dives in the shallow end of the pool equal to pool’s length. In dolphin dives, the swimmer dives down, touches the pool bottom, joins the feet and hands together at the bottom, blow up on the feet, pushing body upwards, and outside the water. Repeat thrice.
  • Kick yourself using a kickboard for about 200 meters.
  • Do freestyle for 100 meters 5 times and take 15 seconds break during this. Record time for each time and then take 1 minute break.
  • Do freestyle for 50 meters seven times and take 10 seconds break between each. Record time for every round and take 90 seconds break.
  • Do broken IM for 50 meters, eight times including 50 meters freestyle, 50 meters butterfly, 50 meters breaststroke and 50 meters backstroke. Repeat this 8 times and take 20 seconds break in between. Record time for each round and take one minute break.
  • Do 50 meter sprints of freestyle seven times, take 10 seconds break in between and try to do each round quicker than the previous.
  • Do simple backstroke or freestyle for 300 meters to calm yourself.

 
9. Covering Long Distances in Pool
 
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This workout is beneficial to cover long distances in the pool as recommended by Iwaniuk. Pool buoy and kickboards will be required to avoid kicking and allow using upper body only. They will be held between the legs.
 

  • Do three rounds of warmup exercises on the pool deck including maximum air squats and pushups for 30 seconds each and rope jumping for 45 seconds.
  • Jump into water and swim with dolphin dives three times across the pool.
  • Use pull buoy to swim for 300 meters.
  • Use kickboard to swim for 250 meters.
  • Don’t stop at 60% effort while swimming freestyle of 150 meters on a stable speed. Repeat the process twice after stabilizing breath.
  • Don’t stop at 75% effort while swimming 150 meters at stable speed. Repeat the process 5 times after stabilizing breath, shifting between backstroke and freestyle.
  • Don’t stop at 50% effort while swimming freestyle for 500 meters at stable speed. Repeat the process twice after stabilizing breath.
  • Don’t stop at 95% effort while swimming freestyle for 200 meters, stabilize breath and repeat the process but do it faster than the first time.
  • Take a simple swim of 300 meters to calm down, any type stroke can be used.

 

 

Type 2 Diabetes And Exercise: The Benefits

Millions of people are affected with diabetes. Most of these people have type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes is simply a condition in which the victim’s body is generating insulin, but for some reason, the insulin is unable to work effectively in the breaking down glucose and converting it into energy, and this leads to a rise in the blood sugar level. Type 2 diabetes could be caused by DNA, which means it’s a common problem that runs in the family and is passed on from one generation to the other, or it could be due to obesity and consumption of foods that are high in sugar.
 

There are definitely ways to keep this under control. You could consult a doctor and take medication, but there is one solution to type 2 diabetes that’s not only easy and convenient, but also has multiple benefits attached to it – exercise! Studies have proven that extended physical activity increase the levels of energy expenditure in the body, thus forcing the body to convert excess glucose into energy.
 
There are various types of physical exercises that have a positive effect on your body and assist in retaining the required sugar levels in the blood, thus avoiding insulin resistance.
 
Regular Exercise to Maintain Proper Body Weight
 
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Exercising daily helps keep your body in good shape and improves immunity. Type 2 diabetes mostly occurs in people who are overweight, as the body is unable to maintain the level of sugar in the body. This problem of excess weight can be curbed by exercise. And even though you may not seem to lose weight through exercising, you need not worry as the physical tension helps burn sugar thus maintaining your blood glucose levels.
 
Exercise Enhances Glucose Conversion
 
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The human body produces insulin that aids in the breaking down of glucose into energy. When the body is at rest, this conversion slows down as there is no energy being utilized. However, during exercise, the body requires a lot of energy, forcing the insulin to continuously break down blood glucose. This ensures that the glucose doesn’t stay in your blood stream and this eventually contributes to the cure of type 2 diabetes.
 
Levels of Intense Exercises
 
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Depending on your ability, your physical trainer can guide you on the types of exercise that your body can endure and will plan out a routine for you. Every type of physical movement and physical exertion is good for burning excess sugar in the body. However, based on the intensity of the exercise, your blood sugar will reduce. Light intensity exercises like yoga and tai chi have also proved effective in the reduction of blood glucose levels. However, the most effect type of physical exercises are aerobics and physical resistance training.
 
Health Adviser Approval
 
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Exercises are a proven cure for type 2 diabetes, however, before you take up any physical activities, it’s best to consult your doctor first to ensure the exercises you have chosen do not have an adverse effect on your health. Based on your weight, health, ability, and requirement, your doctor will suggest what exercises would be best suited for you.
 
Maintaining a Balance
 
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Your body requires glucose at all times. So when you start an exercise routine, it’s imperative to maintain a diet that includes the required amounts of glucose. Exercising will make your body use up most of the glucose present in your blood, as you will require energy. If you do not fuel your body with glucose again, you could go really low on your energy levels.
 
Exercise is a highly underestimated form of treatment for various physical and psychological problems. However, while exercising is proven to help control glucose levels, it’s not the only cure to type 2 diabetes. If you have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, it’s best to visit your doctor who will provide you with the required medication and diet plan that will help you curb your blood sugar. These supplements may need to be taken along with the exercise routine planned by your trainer.
 

 

11 Exercises That Help Reduce Knee Pain Quickly

Are you facing your worst of troubles – knee pain? Its cracking noises giving you the creeps? Well, don’t you worry! About 50 million Americans are going through the same dilemma every day. Knee pain or knee problems are pretty much common among everyone. And yes, it does give you hard time, especially when climbing up stairs. It’s one of the most horrible tasks to accomplish. As a result, you slowly tend to feel less active in your daily life.
 
Well, it’s time to close the rusty doors of pains and welcome the healthy lifestyle that is exercise. If you’re still struggling with hamstrings or quadriceps or other similar conditions, you can overcome all those problems with the help of some vigorous exercises. Here are some interesting tips for your knee pain:
 
The Gentle Push
 
For this exercise, sit on a chair, rest your foot on another chair and keep your knee in a raised up position. Then gently push the knee downwards slowly, and hold it for 5-10 seconds and then turn it back to its original position. Do it at least 5 times.
 
The Heel To Knees
 
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Here, you will lie down on your back, and then you will bend your left knee with left foot flat on floor. You slide your left heel away from your body. Hold it for 5-10 seconds, and then release it to its previous position. You can do this exercise 5 times.
 
Loop a Long Towel
 
This one is surely an interesting one. You sit on a chair and rest your towel on the floor under your foot. Then, slowly pull the towel with your hands and take your feet off the floor so that your knees bend. Keep this position for 5-10 seconds and release it.
 
The Stretch
 
In case of hamstrings, you can use this stretching exercise. You stand straight, put one foot in front of you while keeping your toes up. Hold on to something for support and bend the opposite knee and hip and stretch. Hold it for 5-10 seconds and then loosen up.
 
Lean With Wall
 

Lean your back against wall, bend your knees at a 30 degree angle, slide down slowly while leaning with the wall and then straighten up. Repeat at least 5 times.
 
Bend Your Knees
 
Sit in a chair. Straighten one leg in the air, holding it for a moment. Then bend your knee slowly to lower the leg. Work it out for 4 times!
 
Lift the Foot
 
While sitting straight in a chair, rest your foot on another one; lift one foot in the air and it should remain straight. Hold it for 5 seconds and bring back to its previous position.
 
Lie and Propped
 
You should lie on your side while propped on one elbow. Keep one leg on the floor bent and other one straight. Slowly lift the straight one in midair for few seconds, and then bring it back to its position. Repeat this 12-15 times.
 
Flex One Knee
 
Stand against the wall or a table while the front of your thigh should be aligned with it. Then, flex one knee up and the lower it slowly. Repeat this action 12-15 times.
 
Sturdy Bench or Stairs
 
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Take your position in front of the steps of a sturdy bench or stairs. Then step up and step down repeatedly.
 
The Bike for Strength
 
While biking, you should be cautious about the position of your legs. During pedaling, the knees should be bent 15 degrees.
 
In the initial phase, you should start your exercises 3-4 times a week and you should not strain yourself. Before beginning your exercise routine, you should consult a doctor regarding your pain and strain to avoid any further injury, possibly making your pain worse than before.
 
Tip: After doing all the exercises, some of you might feel increased soreness, so in order to overcome the pain, use ice bags over the joint to soothe.
 

 

Jessica Alba Hates Working Out

Even though Jessica Alba is quoted in the July issue of SELF magazine as saying she hates exercising, the mother-of-two, Golden Globe-nominated actress and star of Sin City, always looks great.
 
Calling working out “boring,” Jessica says she spent a decade making physically demanding movies which forced her to “work out all the time.” After her first child, Honor, in 2008, the 33-year-old admitted that she needed to exercise to “get back into shape” but then stopped as soon as she reached her goal.
 
The same thing happened when the star got pregnant with the couple’s second daughter. Once she had Havie in 2011, Jessica again exercised but stopped out of sheer boredom when she was happy with her post-pregnancy weight.
 
These days Jessica, who co-founded an eco-friendly baby product business called, The Honest Company, and is also involved in numerous charities such as Habitat for Humanity, ONE, Safer Chemicals Healthy Families, and Project HOME, says she works out to relieve stress.

 
She’s quoted in the SELF Magazine interview as admitting: “I realize that I just need to give my mind a break. When you’re being pulled in so many different directions — and I’ve done more this year than I have in the last six or seven — it’s full-on. If you don’t get rid of some extra energy, you can internalize it, and it becomes so unhealthy.”
 
In addition to an exercise routine which includes CrossFit work outs, Jessica follows a low-carb diet and healthy lifestyle. This not only helps maintain her enviably slim 5-foot-7 figure, but keeps her energy levels high enough to lead a life that’s full-on.

 
Her sex-symbol image, something she says she never really enjoyed, has somehow been easier for her to accept after becoming a mother. The STYLE article quotes Jessica as saying: “I don’t have the body of a 14-year-old anymore. I have cellulite and stretch marks, and I have a muffin top! I think the more we try not to have that unrealistic ideal, the happier we’ll be.”