Archive

Category Archives for "Flex Belt"

Kettlebell Injuries: How Do I Prevent Them?

kettlebell injuriesPhoto by WilsonB

Kettlebells are a great way to exercise whether you want to get a cardio workout or you want to focus more on strength workouts. This is why they have become more and more popular in recent years. They are even available in gyms these days and are slowly replacing the traditional dumbbells.

However, due to the size and weight of kettlebells, people tend to get injuries easily especially if they are not holding the kettlebell properly or if their posture is not correct. This article reveals some useful tips to avoid these injuries when you are training with a kettlebell.

Always Warm Up And Cool Down

Lower back injuries or injuries to the knees often occur due to lack of warm up exercises. It is important to prepare your body for the strain that you are going to put on it. Warm up exercises will increase your blood circulation and stretch your muscles and ligaments so your body is ready to undertake physical exercises.

Most professional dvd workouts will include warm up exercises these days so make sure you follow them. You can also have a look online for kettlebell warm up exercises. You should usually aim to do between 5-10 minutes of warm up exercises before starting your kettlebell training session.

A lot of people underestimate the importance of cooling down. They think that because their muscles are not sore straight after exercises they can skip the cool down. What they do not realize is the fact that the full effect on the muscles is not felt until a day or two after exercise.

Proper cool down will get the blood flowing to your muscles which will in turn lessen the pain and soreness you feel over the next couple of days after exercise. Again, aim to spend between 5-10 minutes cooling down after a kettlebell training session.

Use Protective Gloves

Most people who do not use gloves end up getting blisters when they work out with kettlebells. This is due to the fact that kettlebells tend to be really heavy and a lot of friction is created when your hand is in contact with the kettlebell handle.

You can still try and work out without gloves if you think that your kettlebell weight is not heavy enough to cause blisters. However, if your calluses start to get painful, you are better off with a pair of gloves.

Make sure that you invest in a good quality pair of gloves of medium thickness so that they do not get worn out quickly. An alternative would be to use tape to protect your hands but we would recommend gloves as they are designed for this purpose.

Get Your Posture And Grip Right

This is especially important if you are lifting heavy kettlebells. You need to make sure that you have the proper body mechanics. Make sure that your knees are tracking just over your feet and that you keep your back straight and only bend at the hips during exercises.  When you are exercising, stay focused on your form and do not deviate from it because it is easy to get distracted during the exercises.

It is also important to grip the kettlebells tightly so that the kettlebell is not sliding in your hand and rubbing against your skin. This will help maintain your body posture if you are not constantly trying to stop the kettlebell from flying out of your hand.

This will also ensure that you do not accidentally drop the kettlebell on your head or toes or cause damage to your property. You might want to use chalk and powder to increase your grip.

Train Safely

A lot of kettlebell injuries happen when people move up in weight too quickly. You need to make sure that you can fully handle a specific kettlebell weight and then safely move up to a heavier weight.

If you are fairly new to kettlebell training, avoid things like kettlebell juggling. Considering the benefits you are going to get from it, you will find that it is not worth the risk.

Always follow the specific workout routine on the workout dvd or online. If your are a beginner and try and change your posture or the kettlebell exercise, you could end up with injuries.

Create Plenty Of Space

You want to create a good space to perform your kettlebell exercises. You want to minimize the risk that you are going to trip over something or hit something during your workout session.

This will also ensure that if you do end up releasing the kettlebell accidentally during exercises, it is not going to cause damage to your property.

I hope that this article has given you some good tips on how to avoid injuries during kettlebell training. Remember that kettlebell injuries are best avoided because some of them are very difficult to heal and sometimes they can stay with you for life.

 

 

The Flex Belt Reviews: Can It Really Transform Your Abs?

Close Up On Perfect AbsYou will probably have heard of THE FLEX BELT Ab Belt Workout – FDA Cleared to Tone, Firm and Strengthen the Abdominal Muscles from the TV infomercial. In the infomercial, this belt is presented to be the first EMS (Electric Muscle Stimulation) device which has been cleared by the FDA as a class II medical device.

Having seen the infomercial, many people are now searching the internet to try and find real Flex Belt user reviews showing results users have obtained from it and whether it does work when it comes to transforming your ab muscles. It can be extremely hard to find genuine independent slendertone Flex Belt abdominal toning belt consumer or customer reviews on the internet and this is why I have written this article to make your life easy.

I have looked at various sources on the internet for reviews from real users of Flex Belt. I also tried to find the issues and complaints people have with this device. I will share my findings with you below.

I was quite surprised by some of things I found and you might be too. Hopefully, by the end of this article, you will be able to make an informed decision of whether Flex Belt is what you are after.

What Is Flex Belt?

Flex Belt is an ab belt toning system which which claims to tone, firm and strengthen the stomach muscles.

As mentioned above, the Flex Belt uses medical-grade abdominal toning technology, which the company has patented as EMS (Electric Muscle Stimulation) technology. This technology is similar to what physical therapists use on patients who are unable to exercise their muscles effectively.

How Does It Work?

The manufacturers’ claim that you only need to use it for 30 minutes a day to get an effective abdominal workout. They claim that you can use it even if you are too tired or too busy which are the main reasons why people tend to skip traditional workouts. This is because you only need to wear the belt and it does all the work for you with no effort required on your part.

  • The Flex Belt is made up of three medical-grade gel pads which are positioned to cover the abdominal area as well as the external obliques.flex belt pic1
  • When it is being used, it sends signals which stimulate the nerves that are responsible for the contraction and relaxation of your muscles.
  • The nerves extend to all the stomach muscles and this ensures that the entire abdominal area gets an effective workout as the muscles contract and relax naturally.

What Do People Think Of It?

Since you have come to this site to find out about Flex Belt ab belt and toner reviews, here is a summary of what I found. The Flex Belt reviews have been taken from trusted sources such as Amazon and other reliable bodybuilding forums and blogs.

In this Flex Belt customer review, a professional body builder claims that Flex Belt has played an important role in making him win his latest contest:

I have used The Flex Belt as one of my tools in my contest preparation for my recent show which I placed 1st  in my class. The Flex Belt played a huge part in keeping my midsection tight, defined and giving me a competitive advantage.

Art (Professional Body Builder), Official Flex Belt website

Flex Belt is presented as a device which will deliver results in just 4-8 weeks. This user also thinks that it is easy to store and assemble.

I have been using the Flex Belt for the last eight weeks, and I have seen great results. My stomach muscles are tightening, and the mid section that so many women have difficulty losing is diminishing…It is easy to store, charge, and assemble with very little effort on your part.

Johnson, Amazon.com

In the Flex Belt review below, a user with back problems has found the product extremely useful in getting an abdominal workout:

..having a bad back keeps me from being able to keep my abs strong but using this belt so far I have seen and felt a big difference in my midsection and starting to see results.

jerry, Facebook.com

It seems that you can use Flex Belt anywhere you are and while going about your day as normal which saves on time and energy for busy people:

I am a 45 year old mom with 3 children age 3 and under…I lost the majority of my baby weight, I couldn’t tone up all the “jiggly bits”! Also, with 3 small children at home, it’s impossible to get out to the gym regularly. I really like using it and it is so easy. I can use it around the house while I work, clean or do so many different things and I am toning my stomach at the same time…The Flex Belt is the perfect solution.

Salena, Official Flex Belt website

Are There Any Flex Belt Complaints?

There were no clearly negative Flex Belt reviews and it is clearly not a scam product. Some people just had some concerns which I have summarized below.

Product not genuine – One of the main concerns from Flex Belt negative reviews is the fact that people received counterfeit products. This problem can be easily solved. I recommend that you buy Flex Belt from Amazon from the link below to avoid counterfeit products.

No Warranty – The other concern from users is the fact that they did not get 24 months warranty when they bought Flex Belt. Again, this happened to users who bought the Flex Belt from other re-sellers. To ensure that you get the 24 month warranty, you should buy the Flex Belt from Amazon.

No weight loss – There were also some concerns from people who claimed not to have lost weight from using Flex Belt and they started calling it the Flex Belt scam. Flex Belt is not being sold as a weight loss device but rather as a device designed to strengthen, tone and tighten your abdominal muscles. This means that you will probably lose some weight around your waist from getting an abdominal workout, but it is unrealistic to expect to shed the pounds as you would with other workouts.

Verdict

From my research, it seems that Flex Belt has proved to be an effective device for strengthening, tightening and toning abdominal muscles based on user reviews.

Therefore, if you are looking to get tighter abs but are too busy or too lazy to go to the gym or perform traditional workouts, then you should give it a try. The other advantage of the Flex Belt seems to be that you can use it even if you have back problems.

What’s Included In The Package?

The Flex Belt package includes the following:

  • The Flex Belt and gel pads
  • Power supply unit which is rechargeable – This can also be used with other Flex products for the different body parts
  • A belt extension to cater for those with a waist over 44 inches
  • The instruction manual

Additional Free Bonuses

Meal Planner – As an added bonus, when you buy Flex Belt, the complimentary meal plan which is worth $50. This meal planner is designed to help you achieve your weight loss goals while using Flex Belt.

Warranty – When you order Flex Belt from Amazon from the link below, you also get a 24 month warranty. If you have any problems with the product, you can get in touch with the manufacturer through Amazon customer service.

I advise you to only buy this product through Amazon, rather than other re-sellers. This will ensure that you get the genuine product and that you are fully protected in case anything goes wrong.

Click Here To Check The Latest Price On Amazon
And Get That Six Pack You Have Been After

 

What’s The Secret Of Good Ab Workouts For Men At Home?

ab workouts at homePhoto by petar_jurina

What’s the truth about getting six pack abs? Are those home ab workouts that are so widely advertised any good? The information below will help you find out.

It can be hard sometimes to separate truth from fiction as regards to developing the abdominal muscles. In this article, I’ll try and give you some guidance as to what works and what doesn’t. After that, we’ll look specifically at typical ab workouts for men at home so that you can get started straightaway on developing those rock-hard sculpted abs.

The first thing to say is that non-stop muscle isolation exercises are unlikely to work. This is because you simply cannot burn away fat from one specific part of the body. The body does not work like that. While muscle isolation exercises are certainly part of an ab development process, and therefore part of a good ab workout, there has to be more to it than that.

Include Cardio Exercises In Your Workout Routine

In order to support your ab workouts at home effectively, you also need to consider some kind of effective cardio routine. This will help burn fat from all around your body – and that will include your abs.

Another point to be made is that focusing exclusively on the abdominal muscles is a waste of time. Remember that the abdominals are muscles just like any other muscles in your body. You simply do not need to do thousands of repetitions in order to develop them. All that kind of over-exertion will do is result in you over-training and perhaps even injuring yourself.

While it is true that abdominal muscles are stamina-oriented, and therefore may actually benefit from a higher number of repetitions than other kinds of muscles, it is simply not necessary to overdo it. Increasing the level of the muscles’ resistance, and introducing variety into your training, will be a far more effective way of developing them. Keeping the number of repetitions down to 20 or less is a much more effective way of getting great results.

Gradually Increase The Resistance Of Exercises

As with any other kind of exercise, you should gradually be increasing the resistance of the exercise in order to continue getting effective results. And this is true for the abdominal muscles as well. The stronger you make those muscles, the more toned they will look when your body fat is reduced.

That is when you will start to see your six pack abs appearing. There are a number of different ways of increasing the level of resistance in your ab workouts at home. You may decide to use actual weights along with your ab workout or, if you are using an ab machine or ad belt of some kind, you may decide to increase the resistance of it gradually over a period of time.

Another point to be made, which people often overlook, is that it is okay not to train your abs every single day. Think about it. Do you train your other body muscles every single day?

If you are being wise with your workouts, you give your muscles a chance to rest between workouts. Just like your chest, leg and bicep muscles, your ab muscles benefit from rest and recovery time. This means that it is simply unnecessary to train your abs more than about three times a week. Relax and take a day off from time to time!

Build Your Ab Muscles

Since you should treat your abdominal muscles just like any other muscles, then also realize that if your goal is to have a completely flat stomach with a rock-hard six pack, you must go ahead and develop those abs. If you don’t, you will simply end up with a flat stomach with nothing visible beneath it.

So, like I said above, developing those abs is really a balance between reducing overall body fat and developing the ab muscles themselves. Without dealing with both aspects, you simply will not have visible six pack abs.

Now that we have exposed some of the misconceptions that people have about ab workouts, let us look in detail at some example ab workouts for guys.

While it may be the case in most people’s minds that the most effective abdominal exercise is that of doing crunches, this is actually not the case. A good ab workout will target all the abdominal muscles as well as incorporating cardio and strength exercises.

Let’s take a look at some of the kinds of exercises that should be in place for a good ab workout.

What Should A Good Ab Workout Include?

Ab crunches are definitely the classic ab exercise. It may be tempting to do only this particular exercise but your routine will be far more effective if you include other kinds of exercises that target other parts of the abdominal muscles.

These kinds of exercises can include the following:

Lying Bicycle – Lie down, and bend your right leg at the knee. Pull your right thigh up at the hip at the same time. Curl the spine up to the right, and allow your left elbow to touch your right knee. Now repeat the same process from the other side of your body, that is, from the left leg.

Standing Tower Circle – Here, you stand up holding a small towel or a resistance band tightly above your head. Stand up straight. Now contract your abs and slowly move your hands in a large wide circle above your head and around your torso.

Seated Jackknife – Lie down in a face up position. Put some kind of support under your hips, and then stretch your legs and arms. With your knees bent, pull your legs back. Simultaneously, bring your arms, shoulders and head forward into a jackknife position pivoting on your buttocks. Now, hold this contracted position.

Cardiovascular Exercises – I said earlier that cardio exercises should be part of your routine as well. Examples of these are aerobics, swimming, jogging, running and walking. By doing these kinds of exercises, you burn calories fast and shed the belly fat that would otherwise hide your abs. For women especially, belly dancing has proven to be a great combination of ab exercising and cardiovascular exercising. As well as this, it can be great fun!

Weightlifting – Another not-often-spoken-about essential exercise to getting those great abs is that of lifting weights. Just by increasing the mass of muscles in your body, you will automatically burn more body fat because you will be using up more calories to maintain those muscles.

Mind And Body – And finally, don’t forget about the link between your mind and your body. It has been found that by spending time visualizing changes to your body, you can help those changes come about.

So, if you imagine yourself with terrific six pack abs, and really believe it, your body will start to respond to that visualization. A great visualization to use would be to imagine yourself in the mirror with the perfect abs. Then, imagine yourself stepping into the mirror and becoming the person in the mirror. Allow yourself to completely merge with that person. Imagine how that feels. After feeling all the sensations of it, step out of the mirror and get on with your life.

In this article, we started out by looking at some misconceptions that people have about developing their abdominal muscles. We then looked at the kinds of exercises that will help you get those six pack abs. I hope you found this article useful and I wish you well with your abs workout goals.

 

 

Ab Toning Belt: Effective Strategies For Six Pack Abs

six pack toning beltPhoto by Hammerin Man

Are you looking for information on how to transform your stomach muscles into firm hard washboard-type abdominals? Are you looking for a way to reach this ideal body with the least amount of effort possible? Well, you’ve come to the right place.

In this article, we are going to investigate three secrets for reaching a washboard-ripped stomach and then we’re going to look into a time-saving exercise device called an ab belt or an ab toning belt that will help you reach your goal even more quickly and easily.

It’s a dream of many people that they can eventually have a six pack of abdominal muscles. It’s a dream that many chase but few achieve. The ones who do achieve it crucially know and practice three essential everyday things. And they make the routine practice of these things a part of their daily lives.

Let’s get started and reveal exactly what those three way-of-life aspects are that will help you reach your six pack abs. Just by making these tiny changes everyday, you’ll be moving forwards towards your ideal body condition and you’ll will be confident that you will get there steadily and safely.

The Importance Of Water And Diet

It’s frequently said that you should drink at least six to eight glasses of water every day but it’s surprising how often men and women ignore this crucial piece of health advice. And yet maintaining a healthy diet is absolutely key to helping you get those toned and firm abdominal muscles.

The reason for this is that if you do not drink enough water and keep to a healthy diet, you are going to carry around belly fat. And, once that happens, it doesn’t matter how firm or toned your abdominal muscles eventually become…they just will not be visible under that layer of belly fat.

It is then of vital importance that you stay hydrated, not only because this is part of a healthy lifestyle, but it will also help you to regulate the amount of food you eat. It will help you in the fight against fat, and that includes the belly fat. Just by drinking a glass of water before every meal, you will find that you will naturally eat less food at a meal.

Cardio Exercise Is Key

But it’s not enough just to drink water and improve your diet, you also need to be practising some kind of physical exercise that will get your heart rate up. Your target is to elevate your heart rate to what is known as “The Fat Burning Zone”.

If you can achieve this target heart rate four or five times a week, you are setting yourself up to reach your six pack abs efficiently. There are a lot of cardio-based activities that will help here such as riding your bike, swimming, circuit training, walking, Pilates, aerobics or even just running or jogging.

As a side benefit, getting your heart rate up a few times a week will also help you sleep better and give you more energy throughout every day. There is so much to be gained from exercising your heart that it’s a complete no-brainer to do it…you have absolutely nothing to lose by giving it a try.

Precise Workouts For The Abdominal Muscles

The first two points we have discussed have been about ridding yourself of the belly fat that will hide your wonderfully-developed abdominal muscles from the world. While these two secrets are absolutely essential to reach your six pack abs, you obviously need to firm and tone your abs as well.

Let us now investigate what kinds of exercises you can do in order to achieve that toning. Traditionally, abdominal crunches and situps have been an effective way of focusing directly on the abdominal muscles. It has also been found that leg lifts and leg raises also work and, at the same time, they reduce the amount of strain being placed on the back and neck while performing the exercises.

This is an important point. While you are performing any kind of workout, it is key that you maintain a safe and effective form otherwise you risk hurting your body through just through the act of doing the exercise.

Maximize Your Results

As well as the exercises that have already been mentioned, there is a new strategy for abdominal toning that has recently been becoming more and more popular. This is the use of the abdominal belt, more commonly known as an ab belt.

To many people, these devices initially appear to be just money-making scams. But on further investigation, you may see that they are actually based on solid medical principles.

Let’s look a bit closer at how these devices actually work.

How Does An Ab Toning Belt Work?

The ab belt is a belt or pad that fits around your waist, though you can actually buy versions that fit other parts of the body as well. Some systems like Slendertone are able to be used on body parts as diverse as arms, thighs and even your bottom. These kinds of systems allow you to target multiple areas of your body and may eventually prove to be a much better purchase for you if you are interested in them.

An ab belt works by sending electrical current from a powerpack to the pad or belt. Your muscles, once they become subjected to the electrical current, contract just as they would if you were doing a situp. By contracting the muscle again and again, the muscle is being worked-out in the same way as you would if you were doing the actual physical exercise with it. This is how the muscle tissues become toned without effort.

Choose Your Belt Wisely

So that you can get the best ab belt results, it is usually best to buy one that is accompanied by an educational toning program. These kinds of programs will tell you how often to use the ab belt and for how long you should use it.

There will likely also be advice on how to adapt your usage of the belt as your muscles gradually become firmer and stronger over time. With some makes of ab belt you can make your own decision about how to vary the electrical pulse that the powerpack sends to your muscles. You may find that you will need to increase the strength of the pulse as your muscles become firmer.

Our Recommendation

There are lots of ab belts on the market. However, from our research around the internet, we would recommend THE FLEX BELT Ab Belt Workout – FDA Cleared to Tone, Firm and Strengthen the Abdominal Muscles. It comes with a 24 month warranty and shipping is free if you order it from Amazon.

It is very light and therefore can be worn anywhere and anytime as it is well hidden underneath your clothes. You won’t have to worry about hurting your back with the Flex Belt as there are no aggressive movements around the back area. You are likely to suffer from back problems with other ab belts.

In this article, we’ve looked at general principles for reaching your goal of having six pack abs and then we’ve looked a bit deeper and investigated the usage of ab belts. I hope you have found this information useful and wish you the best of luck with your journey to getting your dream six pack.

Click Here To Check The Latest Price of The Flex Belt
On Amazon

 

 

What Are The Six Best Kettlebell Workouts?

best exercises with kettlebells for workoutsPhoto by .v1ctor Casale.

Training with kettlebells is becoming more and more popular because it is a great way to get fit and feel great. But the greatest benefit is probably the fact that it cuts down on gym fees.

You will be surprised about the number of different workouts that you can perform using a kettlebell and this makes a kettlebell rack one of the most attractive pieces of gym equipment to have in your house.

You can get as fit as you want with a kettlebell even as fit as an athlete by just varying your kettlebell weight. In this article, we will discuss some basic facts regarding the kettlebell and also discuss the best kettlebell workouts.

Are Kettlebells Different From Other Gym Equipment?

Kettlebells differ from other pieces of gym equipment mainly because of the variety of workouts that you can perform with it. To explain the difference better, let us use an exercise bike as an example.

The exercise bike is one of the most popular home gym equipment to purchase and a lot of the time the only one people tend to purchase in their lifetime. It is undoubtedly a really good machine, however, it is restricted in the types of workouts you can get from it.

You can only really get two types of workouts, either a long slow paced cardio session or a high intensity interval session. On the other hand, a kettlebell rack with a number of the appropriate weights will give you a variety of workouts that target different training goals and body parts. However, make sure that you take appropriate steps to avoid injuries during kettlebell training sessions.

Achieve Any Desired Fitness Goal

Whether you want to achieve a lean muscular physique or you want bulky muscle mass, you can achieve either of these with two or three kettlebell weights. If you are a man, you will probably not need anything heavier than 24 kg and for a woman you want to stick to a maximum weight of 12 kg.

It is a good idea not to go lower than a 4 kg weight because you are not going to achieve a decent workout from that. Once you get fitter and need to increase your weight you can usually do so by purchasing a new kettlebell which is 2 to 4 kg heavier and carry on increasing your fitness levels this way.

Do More Reps For A Cardio Workout

You can also get cardio workouts from kettlebells. You just need to use lighter weights and perform a high number of the repetitions using one basic exercise routine.

For example, you can easily get your heart and lungs to work harder and create an oxygen deficit by using a 6 kg kettlebell and performing sets of 100 repetitions.You can perform these repetitions for 10 sets and just take two minute breaks in between.

This will put great pressure on your body and give you a great cardio workout which will also increase your metabolism. Even compared to dumbells, the kettlebell is much better because it makes workouts harder which tend to burn more calories.

The Six Best Kettlebell Workouts Revealed

The full body is also being worked out in a lot of kettlebell exercises which means that circuits can easily be built to achieve a variety of different fitness goals. However, a lot of kettlebell exercises can also be considered as isolated exercises because they put emphasis on specific muscle groups during those movements.

The following specific muscle groups exercises give the best kettlebell workouts. However, bear in mind that you need to be very careful when handling kettlebells because you can easily hurt yourself.

Two-handed swing – This is considered one of the best kettlebell workouts because it involves the more major muscle groups which includes the shoulders, back and hips. In addition, it also increases the flexibility of your upper body, overall balance and overall coordination.

Turkish getup – This is considered to be the best full body exercise when it comes to kettlebells. It is very difficult to achieve because it involves standing up from a lying down position with a fairly heavy kettlebell. The Turkish getup also improves stability and strengthens the shoulder, spine and hips.

One arm swing – This is the same as the two-handed swing except you use only one arm to swing the bell. This puts more pressure on the body than the two-handed swing. This is a good exercise for the lower body and arms.

Renegade push-ups – This workout works on several muscles. The plank posture strengthens the core muscles. The rowing position strengthens the arms and the middle back muscles. The push up position strengthens the shoulders, lower back, arms and triceps.

Goblet squats – You can perform this workout by having the kettlebell either in the bottom up position or the bottom down position. This workout is good to strengthen the shoulders, legs, hands, glute and core.

Windmills – This workout requires a complex move. Therefore, this is for more advanced people. It is a full body move which gives a good workout to the shoulders, arms, core and chest.

The kettlebell exercises discussed above will probably be quite difficult if you are a beginner. However, with practice you will get more and more comfortable with these workouts and this will gradually make you stronger.

 

 

Health Benefits Of Yoga: Top Five Health Benefits Revealed

yogaYoga is becoming more and more popular these days because people are finding out that it has lots of advantages to it.

However, to get the best results from yoga, you need to practice it regularly and not take big breaks where you are not doing yoga. There are a lot of people who start off doing yoga and, after doing the first session, they fail to see the point of putting their body in various uncomfortable positions. Therefore they just quit after the first session. Don’t become one of them. Here are some of the health benefits of yoga:

Increases Strength

Yoga can rightly be regarded as a physical workout. You have to adopt different positions and poses that can sometimes be difficult and challenging for some body parts and muscles. By challenging your body in this way, yoga helps you tone your muscles, lose weight and become stronger.

Therefore, if you practice yoga on a regular basis, you will notice that you gradually get stronger and stronger and at the same time get leaner.

Yoga also tells you a lot of things about your body. A lot of people start out thinking that they are not flexible but after practicing yoga for a bit, they find out they are indeed actually quite flexible.

You find out what your body is good at and also find out about its limitations. For example, you will find out whether you are a good back bender or arm balancer. There will also be some poses that the body just cannot do and some that are a real challenge.

Promotes Relaxation

We are all very busy these days with work and family and all sorts of other problems which most of us keep thinking about. This is what leads to stress which is also becoming an increasing problem.

When you are setting aside an hour for a yoga session everyday, it requires your complete focus so that you are able to follow the instructor’s directions and also to be able to get into the right posture and stay in that posture for the required amount of time.

When your focus is on yoga, you leave all your worries about work or family behind. Your mind is clear during your yoga session and this relaxes you. A clear mind helps you live in the present moment and just enjoy life more because you are not worrying about so many things.

A clear mind will also help you sleep. If you suffer from snoring, you should check out anti-snoring mouthpieces because they will really help you have a good night’s sleep.

Increases Mind Strength

In the first instance, because yoga is a physical workout as well, as it gradually gets you physically fit and healthy, you will also gradually be moving to a healthier mind.

But more specifically, some of the poses are very beneficial for the mind. For example, when you are upside down, this helps to push the blood flow to your brain and helps pump out old blood which helps to revitalize your mind.

Furthermore, as you practice different poses, there are different state of mind you have to try and achieve in these poses such as Sthira, which is a posture which also requires one to stay firm and alert, and Sukha which requires a state of ease and no tension.

It requires a lot of practice to achieve these states for these postures and this mindset is beneficial in a lot of other areas of your life such as work and also your personal life.

For example, let us say you are faced with a crisis in your personal life or at work and being able to maintain a calm mindset during this crisis is crucial. This is where yoga will come to your rescue.

Change Bad Habits

First of all yoga helps you identify your bad habits. As mentioned before, when you do yoga it requires your full focus and therefore you really get to know yourself over time and therefore also get to know the bad habits you have.

Because we lead very busy lives these days, if we do not take time for ourselves we will not even recognize when we have a bad habit. And so if we do not recognize that there is a problem then we cannot start changing it for the better.

By helping us focus on ourselves yoga helps us know who we really are and identify those bad habits that we might have.

Also once we have identified these bad habits, yoga also helps us change these bad habits. This is because, over time, by working with the body with the different postures and mindset, yoga teaches the concept of “letting go of that which does not serve me”.

So, for people who have problems with smoking and drinking, yoga will help them change these bad habits over time.

Prevent Future Problems

Yoga essentially teaches that if a posture is painful or does not feel comfortable, you should stop it and try a different posture that feels better to your body.

The reason this concept is important is because quite a few times in life we keep taking the same action every time expecting the outcome to be different.

In other words, we keep trying to get good results by doing the wrong things again and again. Yoga helps you get away from this mindset and just let go and stop doing those things that are clearly not getting you anywhere.

It helps you to move on and take a different action that feels better. In most cases that new action is probably going to yield better results. Therefore, yoga helps you make the right choices and prevents you from future problems.

Hopefully, after reading this article, you have a good idea of what are the health benefits of yoga. You can now decide whether you want to go ahead and practice it.

 

 

High Protein, Low Carb Diet: Key Facts Revealed

high-protein

A high protein and low carb diet is an ideal diet plan to follow if you are looking to lose weight or maintain a lean physique. This type of diet has been beneficial to large number of people already and therefore it definitely seems to work.

However, there are a few things to bear in mind when following this kind of diet. The first mistake most people make is the fact that this is a low carb diet and not a no carb diet, and therefore we are not trying to ban carbohydrates completely because carbohydrates are essential to our body but most of us just do not need as much as we consume.

A typical low carb, high protein diet would consist of lean meats such as fish, or chicken. Highly processed carbohydrates such as white rice, potatoes, white bread and noodles should not be consumed on this diet but further pointers are going to be given below.

First of all let us address some important facts before we give you examples of the best foods to have on a high protein low carb diet.

See Your Doctor First

Generally, this type of diet should not cause an issue for most people. However, it is advisable to consult your doctor before embarking on it in the rare chance that you suffer from a condition that would make a high protein diet harmful to you.

If you generally suffer from some health problems, then you would probably be referred to a trained nutritionist who will be able to help you come up with an optimum diet plan that suits your specific needs.

Exhaustion

The body needs carbohydrates as its main source of energy. So if you are not consuming enough carbohydrates, you will probably feel really tired and exhausted. This will be more of an issue if you are quite active on a daily basis in which case you will need a reasonable amount of carbohydrates to keep you going without feeling fatigued. Depending on how active you are, you need to have the appropriate amount of carbohydrates in your diet plan.

Brain Function

Carbohydrates are the brains most important nutrient to function properly. Therefore, reducing the amount of carbohydrates you are consuming might have an effect on your intellectual capacity. A high protein, low carb diet is not recommended for people who require their optimum mental capacity on a daily basis for their job.

Mood Changes

This is a factor to consider if you are generally a moody person. People who have been on this type of diet have noticed that it affects their moods significantly. This diet might not be suited to you if you already have mood swings.

All Proteins Are Not Equal

There are lots of foods that contain proteins. However, some are very high in protein and some have low protein content. We will go through some examples of good sources of protein later on in this article.

Let us discuss some of the specific foods to have and not to have as part of a low carb, high protein diet. In general, some of the foods to have on hand for a high protein, low-carb diet include foods high in proteins and fats, nuts and grains, fruits, vegetables and dairy products.

Protein

Foods rich in protein are key to this diet. Meats in general tend to be high in protein and low in carbohydrates. Examples are lamb, low fat cuts of pork, beef and veal. Chicken is also a great source of protein as well as all seafood and fish, tofu, eggs and beans.

Dairy

In terms of dairy products, butter, cream cheese and full fat cheeses are not really advised. Alternatives would be cottage cheese, soft cheeses and hard cheeses.

Fruits

Contrary to the general belief that fruits are really healthy, they also contained a high amount of naturally occurring sugars which are high in calories and can make you put on weight really fast. Therefore, fruits that are high in sugars should be avoided such as dates, raisins, figs, bananas and pineapples. Low-calorie fruits include most berries such as blackberries, raspberries and blueberries. Lemons are also low in sugar.

Vegetables

Most vegetables are allowed in this diet, especially leafy vegetables, peppers, cabbage, broccoli and cucumbers. Vegetables that are not recommended are starchy ones such as potatoes, beets, squash and peas. These starchy vegetables have alternatives such as celery roots and cauliflower. In terms of proportions on your plate, at least half of your plate for any meal should consist of salads or vegetables. Fibrous vegetables are also high in fiber which prevents constipation (which can lead to problems such as hemorrhoids).

Bread

Have low carb tortillas, high fiber crisp-breads and make sure you read the label to buy other breads that have low calorie content.

White breads and wholemeal breads are not recommended because they are made from wheat and wheat tends to be high in calories. Breads which are lower in calories tend to be made from sprouted grains and are very filling.

Cupboard

Snacks to keep in your cupboard are things like seeds and nuts. If you eat canned food, try and aim for ones with no added sugars.

This article gives you an idea of what to expect and what foods are recommended on a high protein, and low carbohydrate diet. You should now have enough information to decide whether this diet is appropriate for you or not.

 

 

The Best Home Exercise Equipment Choices

exerciseequipment

Photo by The Library of Virginia

If you watch television for any length of time, you will no doubt see a never-ending stream of new and exciting exercise equipment. Many of the products may appear to be quite good while many may appear to be just gimmicky. The question you have to ask yourself is what’s good and what’s bad?

Among the options available are free weights, from which you can get an excellent workout by themselves.

Kettlebell Popularity

Kettlebells have become very popular recently for overall toning and cardio as well as for muscle building. The reason for their popularity is their simplicity, affordability and the fact that it gives you a full body workout.

At the start though, you might find kettlebells can be a bit fiddly and can take you a while to get through your workout routine, especially if you’re aiming to exercise your entire body.

But, if you stick with it, you will get better in no time. Kettlebells can be used by both men and women. The recommended kettlebell weight for an average woman is 8 kg and the recommended kettlebell weight for an average man is 12 kg.

If you are aiming to build more muscle mass and get less cardio, then you can just increase your kettlebell weight accordingly and perform less reps of your chosen workout routine.

Cardio Machines

A better option might be just to use a good cardiovascular machine. The kinds of machines that are excellent are the ones that offer you the capability to exercise every major muscle group such as the elliptical trainer or a treadmill.

Elliptical trainers are great for people who suffer from bad knees and want a low impact on their joints. Treadmills enable people to walk or run indoors. If you choose a treadmill that can be inclined, then you can get a more challenging workout. Often they can be folded and stored away quite easily without causing any inconvenience. You will find a full review of a high spec treadmill for the home here on the site.

Another option for you is the good old exercise bike. Exercise bikes have been around for such a long time, decades in fact, and although many people do not regard them as having the same flexibility as many other exercise machines, you can buy them for a relatively small amount of money.

They’re convenient to use; you just jump on and you can get a great workout for your heart in minutes. Even just a quarter of an hour a day would make a significant difference to you.

Target Your Whole Body

I’m not sure though I would recommend this as the only form of exercise you should do. The problem with exercise bikes is that they only target a very limited part of your body. Your upper body will be neglected if you simply rely on an exercise bike.

Another less popular piece of exercise equipment that gives you a good cardio workout is the jump rope. Once you get the hang of it and get used to the timing, rhythm and speed, this form of exercise is so fun that it will get addictive. The best types of jump ropes are the weighted jump ropes, that give your shoulders a better workout and the speed rope that gives a more intense overall workout.

Rowing machines are yet another very popular option for exercising. They’re often compact, extremely affordable, and can often give you a whole body workout. And the great thing is that you can get this complete workout in very short amount of time.

If You Buy It, Use It

There are so many different types of exercise equipment these days and it would be impossible for one article to cover everything that is available. Your basic strategy should be to simply find something you like using – and use it!

If you know that all you are going to use is an exercise bike, then by all means go ahead and get one. It is far better to buy a piece of equipment you know you are going to use than one that is going to sit around the house doing nothing all day.

Even a bike, combined with a brisk walk during the day, perhaps a swim at some point, and perhaps even some gentle stretching, will enable you to keep fit in a relatively short amount of time.

Your Body Is For Life

Whatever piece of exercise equipment you choose, the most important thing, like I said, is to use it. There is little more painful than paying out a large sum of money for an expensive piece of equipment and watching it deteriorate in the corner of your house.

It seems amazing that many people will work huge amounts of overtime each week to afford a large house and a nice car yet they won’t even spend half an hour taking care of their own body a few times a week. Add to this all the horrible food that they put into their bodies and the stress caused by the demands of everyday life. They are asking for major problems with their health.

You want your kids to see you grow older don’t you? So don’t fall into the trap of putting your work before your body. Just by buying a piece of fitness equipment that you will definitely use will go a long way to helping you live a long healthy happy life.