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Bodyline Wellness Center is one of the leading centers in the Sports and Fitness world, that champions the fitness industry for over two decades. The key to our success is in offering every client a unique personalized service at the one-stop Bodyline Outlets.
In an industry often equated with fad and fashion, Bodyline Fitness has steadily increased its presence by focusing on the one lifelong benefit valued by everyone: good health.
Our strong and successful growth stems from our commitment to understanding and meeting the distinct needs of each community we serve. With our wide range of amenities and a highly trained staff, we can provide fun and effective workout options to family members of all ages and interests. Because we know that a healthy society depends on the wellbeing of all those who comprise it, our emphasis is on giving our members the most for their money to make the Bodyline Fitness experience accessible to more segments of the community.
If you’re serious about dodging seasonal bugs, get some exercise.
You already know the basics of dodging sickness: get a good night’s sleep and wash your hands thoroughly and often. (It takes 15 seconds of scrubbing to wipe out germs, by the way.)
Garlic, vitamin C, and even chicken soup may also help prevent or reduce the duration of the common cold, though most research suggests that the benefits of each are modest. Some newer research also shows probiotics may be protective, though experts are still sorting out which strains and amounts are beneficial.
But if you’re really intent on sidestepping illness, meditation may be the best way to stay cold free, says Dr. Bruce Barrett, a professor of family medicine and community health at the University of Wisconsin. In his research, he’s found that mindfulness meditation can lower risk for common respiratory infections by up to 60% by combating immune system-crippling stress.
Daily exercise offers similar immune-boosting benefits, Barrett and other experts say. “People who exercise 30 to 45 minutes a day experience a 40% to 50% reduction in the number of days they get sick,” says Dr. David C. Nieman, director of the Appalachian State University Human Performance Lab at the North Carolina Research Campus.
For the past three decades, Nieman has conducted more than 100 studies on the immune system benefits of physical activity. Whether you’re fond of fast walking, running, swimming or weight training, he says, exercise appears to pump up your body’s built-in defenses.
Within minutes of starting your exercise routine, your body’s circulating levels of white blood cells, natural killer cells and other sickness-fighting agents increase, Nieman says. Likening them to the military’s special operations forces, he says these immune system warriors seek out and attack invading viruses or bugs. The more active you are, the more active your immune system tends to be.
But it’s possible to get too much of a good thing. Exercising for prolonged stretches without a break eventually puts stress on the immune system. “During the week or two after running a marathon, we see infection rates doubling or even rising sixfold,” Nieman says.
The human body wasn’t designed for long stretches (90 minutes or more) of unrelenting vigorous exercise, he explains—”and this is coming from a guy who’s run 58 marathons.” Once your body is pushed to the point that muscle glycogen becomes depleted, levels of stress hormones and inflammation both spike. These suppress your immune system, leaving you exposed to illness.
But even intense exercise is fine as long as you’re taking breaks between bouts. Nieman has looked into various forms of interval training as well as sports like tennis. He says you can train or play for hours as long as you’re giving your body periods of intermittent rest.
As you might expect, long periods of sitting or inactivity are detrimental to the immune system. “When people sit around a lot, that’s when you see infection rates go up,” he says.
If you’re already sick, you need to rest, Nieman says. But for everyone else, moving is one of the best ways to keep well.Read more ...
Your workout vs. your junk food!Read more ...
No gimmicks, no lies — just 11 science-based shortcuts from slim-down guru Jim Karas.
"The trouble with dieting," I hear many women say, "is that it takes too long. If I want to look good for my anniversary next month, I should've started losing weight way back in February. Now that I'm finally focused, it's too late." Well, yes and no. Taking the long-term approach to weight loss is wise because it means you'll lose pounds slowly and steadily -- making it more likely that you'll keep them off. But there are ways to rev up your metabolism so you burn calories and lose weight more quickly. Check out my favorite no-fail jump starts.
WATCH YOUR FLUIDS
1. Drink green tea. Get this: When a recent study compared the metabolic effect of green tea (in extract) with that of a placebo, researchers found that the green-tea drinkers burned about 70 additional calories in a 24-hour period. If you can believe it, those 70 calories a day add up to a total of 7.3 pounds of fat a year! It's not magic, it's science: Researchers believe the difference is caused by metabolism-enhancing antioxidants known as catechins, which are found in green tea.
2. Avoid calories in a glass. Scientists now know that the body does not register liquid calories in the same way it does solid calories. Drinking a grande caffe mocha, for instance, won't make you feel satiated the way eating a bowl of pasta will. Which means that although the caffe mocha actually has a greater number of calories than the pasta, you're still more likely to want a second cup from Starbucks than another plate of linguine. So monitor your intake of juice, soda, coffee drinks and wine. If you consume one of each of those beverages during the day, you'll have taken in at least 800 extra calories by nighttime — and you'll still be hungry. (Incidentally, alcohol may suppress the metabolism of fat, making it tougher for you to burn those calories.)
3. Buy a set of five-pound weights. It's a onetime investment you'll never regret. Here's why: Strength training builds lean muscle tissue, which burns more calories — at work or at rest — 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The more lean muscle you have, the faster you'll slim down. How do you start strength training? Try some push-ups or a few squats or lunges. Use your free weights to perform simple biceps curls or triceps pulls right in your home or office. Do these exercises three to four times per week, and you'll soon see a rapid improvement in your physique.
4. Lose the salt. Sodium contributes to water retention, making you look and feel bloated. Do you eat too much salt? Probably — the daily value suggests no more than 2,400 milligrams of sodium each day (or about one teaspoon), but most of us are getting more than twice that amount. So keep an eye on your sodium intake, and that doesn't just mean ditching the saltshaker. Hidden sources include soups, canned foods and drinks (did you know a serving of regular V8 juice has 800 mg of sodium?), salty snacks such as chips and pretzels and many prepackaged foods.
HEAT THINGS UP
5. Spice it up. Angelo Tremblay, Ph.D., director of the division of kinesiology at Laval University, in Canada, found that eating hot peppers can boost a person's basal metabolism (the total calories the body burns at rest). The reason? Capsaicin, a compound found in jalapeno and cayenne peppers, may increase your body's release of stress hormones such as adrenaline, which can speed up your metabolism and your ability to burn calories. What's more, eating hot peppers may reduce your appetite, Tremblay says, helping to curb your cravings. So spice up your stir-fried veggies, eat low-calorie chili or salsa (try them on salads and baked potatoes), and watch the pounds come off faster.
6. Get some sleep. As funny as it sounds, sleep deprivation may make you fat — and not just because you're susceptible to cases of the late-night munchies (although there's that too). Women who get less than four hours of sleep per night have a slower metabolism than those who snooze for a full eight hours, according to researchers at the University of Chicago. So don't skimp on your zzz's, and you'll be rewarded with an extra edge when it comes to shedding pounds quickly.
7. Go for an evening walk. Don't get me wrong — exercising at any time is good for you. But evening activity may be particularly beneficial because many people's metabolism slows down toward the end of the day. Thirty minutes of aerobic activity before dinner increases your metabolic rate and may keep it elevated for another two or three hours, even after you've stopped moving. What that means for you: Those dinner calories have less of a chance to take up permanent residence on your hips.
8. Eat every meal. Listen up: Skipping meals will not make you lose weight faster. That strategy backfires because your body thinks food is in short supply, so it slows your metabolism in order to conserve energy. Over time, the result is that when you do eat — even if you consume the same foods as always — your body will be slower to use the calories as fuel, thus creating a backlog of unwanted pounds. If a hectic day makes a sit-down meal impossible, stash an energy bar or a piece of fruit in your purse or briefcase -- anything that will keep you from going hungry.
9. Add 20 minutes of exercise per day. If you're on a diet, you're probably already working out a couple of times a week. (No? Well, you should start!) But whether you exercise or not, you can get a leg up on all those other weight-loss wannabes by doing a little something extra each day. Take the stairs instead of the elevator; walk to the bus, train, or all the way to the office; window-shop with your best friend rather than sit over coffee. Taking the dog out, gardening and even housecleaning all increase the number of calories you expend. You don't have to go for a jog (although that would help!) to speed up weight loss. Twenty minutes of moderate exercise a day means you'll burn approximately 700 calories.
10. H20, H20, H20. You've heard it before, and you'll hear it again. That's because drinking 64 ounces of water daily is one of the easiest ways to speed up weight loss. Your body needs water in order to efficiently metabolize stored fat. When you shortchange your supply, you're likely to slow down that process, meaning it's more difficult for you to burn calories. An easy eight glasses a day (at least!) will keep your system running smoothly.
11. Don't go for the gimmicks. At any given time, there are dozens of weight-loss hypes in the marketplace that claim to have the ability to take off 10 pounds in 10 days, or whatever. Desperation can tempt us to try anything, but you and I both know these schemes don't work. Save your money, but more importantly, save yourself from the emotional pain when these gimmicks fail. Be realistic. Jump-start your weight-loss program in ways that make sense, and not only will you be thinner, you'll be happier too.Read more ...
Your workouts may not mean a lot if you sit too much
Most of us know that we need to be more physically active. Only 20% of American adults get the recommend amount of physical activity—150 minutes of the moderately intense aerobic kind—each week.
But simply moving more isn’t enough, according to a new report published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. The benefits of exercise can be blunted if you also spend most of the rest of your day sitting. Dr. David Alter, a heart expert from the University of Toronto and senior scientist at the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, and his colleagues found that sitting too much—even among people who exercise regularly—led to higher rates of hospitalization, heart disease and cancer, as well as early death.
The researchers looked at 47 studies that asked people how much time they spent sitting and exercising, as well as rates of heart disease, diabetes, cancer and death from any cause. The more hours people in the studies spent sedentary—like watching TV or reclining on a couch—the higher their risk of all of these negative outcomes. Heavy sitters showed a 90% higher risk of developing diabetes than those who sat less, an 18% higher chance of dying of heart disease or cancer, and 24% greater odds of dying from any cause. These rates were the average among people who both exercised regularly and those who did not.
“What struck me, and I was quite surprised by this, was that the deleterious effects of sitting time were almost uniform across the board of total mortality, heart disease mortality, the occurrence of heart disease, the occurrence of cancer and the mortality from cancer,” says Alter. “When we see a consistent effect, that reaffirms that something real is going on.”
What’s happening, he suspects, is that the metabolic effects of sitting are overwhelming any benefits that exercise might have. Even if people exercise regularly for half an hour or an hour a day, how they spend the remainder of that day is also important to their health. Alter says that the unhealthy effects of sitting are somewhat reduced among those who are physically active—by about 15%—but they aren’t completely erased. “You can make a little bit of headway on the bad effects of sedentary time by at least doing some exercise,” he says. “But you can’t completely nullify it.”
The only way to do that is to sit less, and not just exercise more. For so long, the public health message has been to move more and squeeze in as much active time as possible into the day. That message is still important, he says, but it needs to change as new research on the dangers of sitting starts to emerge. “It’s time to modify the public health message,” he says. “We still need more research, but there is a signal there that it’s time to do that. We need two different strategies—one that targets exercise for 30 minutes to 60 minutes a day, and the other is to reduce sedentary behavior.”
For his patients, Alter starts by helping them realize how much of their day they spend in a chair. There’s no prescription for sitting, and no research yet to support the optimal levels for avoiding cancer or heart disease or early death. But studies have shown that standing burns twice as many calories per hour, about 140, as sitting. And burning extra calories is a good way to maintain a healthy weight, one of the key factors in preventing heart disease and some cancers.
“Little things add up to a lot,” says Alter, who says he checks emails while on a elliptical. He also recommends standing up or moving around for several minutes every half hour when you’re at your desk, and aiming to sit two to three hours less in a 12 hour day. If you can’t give up your favorite TV shows, he adds, stand during the commercials.Read more ...
4 Reasons You Should Do Pull-Ups are;
1. Functional Strength: As humans, we perform a wide range of movements on a daily basis, including standing, walking, pushing, pulling, twisting, turning, etc. By improving your functional strength through dynamic compound exercises like pull-ups, you strengthen the relationship between your nervous and muscular systems.
2. Posture Improvement: As you strengthen your back and core muscles, you can achieve better posture. When your posture improves, you appear longer and leaner.
3. Back Pain Alleviation: A lot of people sit on the drive to work, sit in front of a computer all day, and then sit driving home. You might even sit on the couch once you’re home. All of this cumulative sitting increases the physiological load on your back. By strengthening your back and core muscles with the pull-up, you reduce your chances of future pain and injury.
4. Better Looking Physique: Want to look great in that tank top? Pull-ups help define your back and biceps and work your core. All of this makes your waist look smaller. For guys, it can also help create the “V” shape.Read more ...
The BODathon is throwing a new twist into the Beachbody regimen: Asking you to do multiple hard workouts in a day. Our company thrives on making exercise time efficient. Programs like FOCUS T25, P90X3, and 21 Day Fix can get your body into great shape in 30 minutes a day or less. For those looking to go bigger, whether it’s for the BODathon or something else like a triathlon or a Spartan race, learning how to safely exercise for longer, across multiple disciplines becomes vitally important. Here are a few rules to ensure success.
Warm Up and Cool Down While these things are always important, the more workout volume you have in your day the more they’re necessary to reduce your risk of injury. Cool downs help lengthen contracted muscles, which help you get ready for your next session. On days when you’re doing two workouts, warm-ups are doubly important because they will signal you if your body isn’t ready for the second workout, in which case you should NOT do it, no matter what your schedule says.
When doing two workouts in a day, it’s very tempting to skip warm-ups and cool-downs because they add time but, as someone for whom multiple daily workouts have almost been a religion, take it from me that this is a bad idea. I’ve had minor injuries cut short many training programs by trying to cut corners.
Abandon Your Program’s Diet Plan Most of Beachbody’s workout programs come with a nutrition plan. These are generally designed around that specific program, which is usually targeting weight loss. Eating 1200 to 1600 calories a day can be great for shedding some pounds when doing a moderate amount of exercise, but multiple hard workouts a day change your nutrition template. You need calories to recover from each workout and underfeeding your body is the quickest way to stall your metabolism.
On days when you do multiple workouts, you should add at least as many calories as the second workout burns. Since workout caloric burn is a direct result of how hard you try, you need to estimate this yourself. In a given hour of exercise, half-baked efforts generally only burn a few hundred calories, while keeping your pedal to the metal can result in over a thousand.
A good way to tell if you’re eating enough is performance. If you workouts are improving, you’re doing okay. If they’re getting worse, you almost certainly need to add food. After three or four bad sessions in a row, you likely need to add food AND rest.
Don’t Abandon Your Program, Especially Rest and Recovery Protocols Hopefully your two-a-day schedule was written by someone who knows what they’re doing. Most Beachbody workouts are designed as all you need to do for a day. Combining them takes some thought. Most programs that add multiple workouts take into account how long your body needs to recover from that type of training. This is accomplished with active rest days and recovery weeks. Like skipping your warm-up and cool-down—which often happens because these things are “boring”—your risk of injury increases greatly when you skip planned recovery days.
Learn About Nutrient Timing Adding food to your diet is best accomplished by understanding how your body utilizes calories at different times during the day. Before and after you eat are the main times to consider. Pre-workout, you don’t want many calories. Just enough to ensure your glycogen stores are topped off. Post-workout is the most vital time. Proper eating in the hour following your workout will help you recover from one session so that you’re ready for the next. This subject requires more information, so check out this article, or at least read the next tip.
It’s worth noting that the above article is old. Not much has changed, though it’s worth discussing the need for glycogen in shorter workouts. Workouts under 45 minutes or so rarely extinguish all of your glycogen. This changes what you should consume post-workout, mainly the need for sugar to rush protein into your muscles. When doing more than one workout, assuming they are both hard, your body will often burn glycogen at “rest” between the two workouts, so you should add the time of both workouts to figure out whether you need your glycogen topped off. This is a topic in the article linked to in the next section.
Supplement Wisely The harder you exercise, the more important supplements are. Most effective sports supplements are designed around the nutrient timing windows discussed above. Good supplements target pre, post, and during exercise windows, as well as addressing night and morning, the time that your body has slept and fasted, two actions to promote hormone production, which means recovery.
If you’re a Beachbody customer, you’ve likely noted that our Performance Line addresses these times in depth. It’s by design, of course, and this article will help you make perfect sense out of it.
Hydrate When your body’s trying to recover, it burns calories, which requires water. This means that standard 6-8 glasses of water a day the experts say you should drink goes up. We like to use “half your weight in ounces of water” as the gold standard for hydration. Adding another quarter for each workout should be your minimum target.
Listen to Your Body After considering all of the above, the most important rule is to listen to your body. Close! There are no hard and fast rules about doing multiple workouts in a day except that it puts excess stress on your body. If you can keep your body’s recovery processes working properly, more training equals faster and better results.
But that’s a big if. Be careful. One of the rules I personally follow is to assess how my body’s responding while warming up and base the following workout on its response. If it’s stiff and sore, but still working properly, I may drop a gear from full throttle. If I feel lazy, which you likely will at some point, but everything feels okay, I’ll push 100%. But if I’m lethargic, meaning that my warm-up doesn’t get me feeling springy and ready for action—or in any way brittle or susceptible to injury—I’ll shut things down and try again the next day. Because no training is beneficial if you can’t recover from it.Read more ...
The sit-up is an effective exercise for anyone who wants to train both the abdominals and hip flexors. However, it’s also been shown to impose extremely large compression forces on the discs in your spine. That’s a problem.
Bend a wire coat hanger back and forth and, eventually, it will snap. You can’t predict in advance exactly how many bends it will take before it breaks. But you know it’s going to happen sooner or later. Likewise, the discs in your spine can only tolerate so many bending cycles before the accumulated damage manifests itself in the form of pain. Sit-ups may not damage your spine right away. But each set could be moving you one step closer to a crippling back injury that keeps you out of the gym for some time.
There are also better abs exercises to choose from. In fact, certain exercises have been shown, in some studies anyway, to work the abdominal muscles harder than sit-ups. These abdominal exercises not only work your stomach muscles but they increase the strength of your stability muscles and experts and users have found that these exercises work your core harder than abs crunches or sit-ups!
The Plank Lie face down on the ground. Lift yourself up into your elbows whilst keeping your feet on the ground toes pointing to the floor. Keep your body aligned straight, pulling in your belly button inwards. Hold this position for 30 seconds and work your way up to 90 seconds as you improve. This exercise works all the core muscles and keeps your spine stable and straight. You will be putting less strain on your back compared to crunches or sit-ups.
Mountain Climber Go into the push-up position either on the ground or on an exercise ball. Bend one leg towards your chest, bringing your knee up, hold for a second and lower back to the ground while keeping your back straight.
Repeat again for the other leg. Do 20 reps where raising one leg to your chest is one set. This exercise works your core muscles as with the plank exercises. You also increase the stability workout for the muscles in your core, arms and legs if done with a stability ball.
Roll Out With Exercise Ball Kneel on the ground in an upright position with your hands out in front of you resting on the exercise ball. Roll the ball out in front of your so that your arms are extending. Roll out as far as you can and hold for two to three seconds. While keeping your stomach pulled in and your back straight at all times, pull yourself back to the starting position. This exercise will work your core and lower back stability muscles as well as working your abs. Although your lower back is getting a workout, it is not put under any strain.
Jackknife Roll yourself on your stomach over an exercise ball so that your hands are shoulder length apart on the floor and your shins and feet resting on the exercise ball. Keep your arms and back straight pulling your belly button in. Roll the exercise ball towards your chest raising your hips and rounding your back. Pull the ball until your feet are on the ball. Pause and return to the start position.
Russian Twists Sit on the ground or on an exercise ball and roll yourself onto your back. Move your feet forward so that they are at 90 degrees. Clasp your hands together and hold your hands out in front of you with your arms straight pointing to the ceiling. Roll towards the right and then to the left. This is one repetition. Do 12-15 reps. You can increase the difficulty by holding a free weight disc or kettle weight. These five alternative abs exercises that strengthen core muscles and help you towards flattening your stomach, but this alone is not enough to get the desired results. It requires changes to your lifestyle and there are ways that don’t even involve exercise. Here are a few tips to uncovering your abs:
Eat More Fat (The Good Kind) While some sources of fat like hydrogenated oils and lard can lead to weight gain, other sources like extra virgin olive oil and walnut oil can have the opposite effect, making them excellent tools in any flat-belly arsenal. While Olive Oil increases blood levels of serotonin, a hormone associated with satiety, walnut oil’s high polyunsaturated fatty acid content is to thank for its fat-torching powers. The fatty acid has shown to increase diet-induced calorie burn and resting metabolic rate, the calories we burn to keep our body running.
Sip On Green Tea In addition to its great taste and long list of health benefits, sipping green tea can make the time you log at the gym more worthwhile. A recent three-month study found that those who sip up to five cups of the brew daily and log 25 minutes at the gym lose more abdominal fat than their non-tea-drinking counterparts who also broke a sweat. What makes the drink is such a powerful flab incinerator? It’s filled with an antioxidant called Catechin that hinders the storage of belly fat.
Focus On Lean Proteins While dairy, fresh fruits, veggies and whole grains are important elements of a healthy diet, no other food group has as big an effect on weight loss as lean proteins. Low-fat meats like white meat turkey, chicken and pork chops have been shown to boost satiety, which can reduce your daily caloric intake, fueling weight loss. Lean meats also have a high thermogenic effect, meaning your body actually burns off some of the meat’s calories as it digests. For the best flab-burning results, consume 0.8 to one gram of lean proteins per kilogram of bodyweight each day.
Get More Sleep Believe it or not, sleeping, dieting and training are equally important when it comes to sculpting a sick set of abs. No matter how many calories you cut or miles you log, it won’t get you anywhere near your goal unless you’re also getting enough sleep. In fact, losing a mere hour of shut-eye over the course of three days has been shown to negatively impact the body’s hunger hormone, ghrelin, increasing the number of calories you’re bound to consume each day. Researchers also say that skimping on sleep increases the odds you’ll wind up munching on junk food, especially at night, which can make it difficult to get chiseled abs.
Cut Down On The Beers There no trainer out there that can help you out-train poor nutritional and lifestyle choices, and this includes drinking alcohol. When you down a drink, be it beer, wine or liquor, your body has to break down the alcohol before it can process all the other food in your system. This slows down the metabolic process, and can make it difficult to strip away the layer of fat that’s covering your abs. What’s more, consuming just half a drink can significantly increase appetite and the number of calories you subsequently consume, even if you still feel stone-cold sober. The bottom line: Ditch the booze if you really want to see your abs shine through.
HIIT Everyone has abs, even if you can’t see them because they’re hidden under a layer of flab. The best way to burn off the fat and carve out abs is to add high intensity interval training (HIIT) sprints to your weekly fitness routine. If you’re looking to shed some weight, combining high calorie burning HIIT workouts with a balanced diet comprised of complex carbs, healthy fats and lean protein is a must. Sprinting builds muscle, which helps burn fat quickly. Also, the action of driving the legs initiates the abs and core. The faster you go and the shorter your recovery, the more your abs will develop.
Mix It Up If you think juggling multiple projects at the office is challenging, wait until you try multitasking at the gym. While it’s not easy, it’s an important aspect of the flat ab equation. I’m a huge fan of exercises that work multiple body parts because they allow you to cut down on the time spent working out, torch loads of calories and are more challenging than working one body part at a time. Doing sit-ups in hopes of getting great abs is a lot like studying for a test with the wrong set of notes. Sure, you’re working your butt off, but your efforts are misguided.Read more ...
I hear from coaches about speed on almost a daily basisâ€”training requests like "I want my kids to shoot down the field and catch guys from behind," "My kids need to be way faster for this league," and "Our team needs to learn how to sprint with better form."
Speed is so much fun to work with because you can dramatically improve it with some smart work.
There are two avenues for you to pick up speed: on-field speed (running, drills, sprints etc) and weight room speed. Which is better? Neither. You need both to become faster, but building weight room speed can lead to serious gains. Check out the video player above for a demonstration of the 5 exercises below.
The key factor for sprinting is the ability to drive a really strong force into the ground in a small amount of time. The bigger force you drive with your lower body, the more your entire body moves.
How do you develop that force?
A new year brings both the opportunity for reflection on the past year as well as a chance to set goals that (we hope) will guide our thoughts, actions and intentions in the future. An overwhelming percentage of New Year's resolutions pertain to diet, exercise and weight loss. In fact, one survey found that three out of the five most common American resolutions involve these appearance-centric goals.
[Read More: Why You Shouldn’t Start a New Year With a Diet]
In general, goals for improving the physical self through exercise begin as healthy pursuits. However, for a subset of the population, these resolutions -- exercise alone or exercise combined with dieting -- can spiral into something very unhealthy: compulsive exercise. Also known as "over-exercise," this term refers to performing too much exercise motivated by an urgent, compulsive need for movement.The notion of exercise as being unhealthy is difficult for many Americans to understand: Our culture sends strong messages telling us that exercise is "good" for us. In light of this pervasive cultural sentiment, how do we define and identify unhealthy exercise? At a very basic level, we can look at quantitative measures, including frequency of exercise and the intensity of the movement. We can also examine the physical repercussions of over-exercise, which often include significant weight loss, low body weight, fatigue and injury. In addition to evaluating how often and how hard one exercises, it's important to look at the underlying intention to determine if exercise is healthy or not. Exercise can be worrisome if driven by guilt or shame, a feeling of being out of control if one cannot engage in exercise behaviors, or the perception that exercise must be used to "make up for" eating or missing a workout session. Compulsive exercisers can't go through a normal day without doing their exercise routine (or a comparable activity), and this need can interrupt normal life behaviors, including work, school or family commitments. Exercise consumes one's thoughts: People who struggle with unhealthy exercise behaviors are often incapable of having a conversation without talking about exercise. Compulsive exercise is particularly common alongside an eating disorder. The perfectionistic temperament often seen in individuals with anorexia, bulimia and related disorders can also drive over-exercise behaviors as a compensatory mechanism for "getting rid of" calories and driving weight loss. When combined with depleted nutrition and medical complications characteristic of an eating disorder, over-exercise can be dangerous and physically compromise the body even further. While some people may be able to overcome unhealthy exercise with the support of an outpatient psychiatrist, therapist or dietitian, others may need more intensive treatment. In general, treating compulsive exercise involves the following: * Thorough medical, psychological and nutritional assessment. Compulsive exercise has both physical and emotional aspects that are unique to each person and should inform the individualized treatment plan. There are many times when individuals struggling with exercise or body issues are challenged with being able to reliably self-report. In these situations, a body-movement sensor can be helpful in establishing exercise patterns, including the frequency, volume or intensity of the movement. * Stabilizing nutrition and interrupting exercise. This is important to determine metabolic function and, for individuals who are underweight, restore a healthy weight. * Psychological support to explore contributing and maintaining factors of the over-exercise. I think back to one patient who, following interruption of her excessive exercise, said to me: "It was such a relief to be able to let go of the constant feeling that I had to get to the next level or reach the next goal. It felt like someone tapped me on the shoulder and said, 'It's OK, you've done enough, you can stop now.'" For some, permission to stop exercising and understanding how movement has been used to cope with painful feelings can be life changing. * Identifying healthy movement versus over-exercise. Definitions of movement and exercise vary. For example, many of my patients may not consider walking, riding their bike or even doing stomach crunches to be exercise. They'll say this movement "doesn't count" because it's not part of their goal-based exercise. Understanding how the body supports movements of all kinds can help individuals understand healthy versus unhealthy movement. * Identification of physical activities that the individual enjoys that uses their body. This could include walking with a friend, gardening, yoga and dance -- and adding in exercise/movement over time based on the individual's unique recovery needs. When reintroducing movement, exercise should not be about burning calories or creating a perfect body, it should be about the joy of movement. Weight-loss resolutions at the start of the New Year can spiral from a simple exercise goal into unhealthy exercise compulsion, particularly among individuals with perfectionistic temperaments. Understanding that not all exercise is healthy is an important first step to growing awareness of the dangers of compulsive exercise. If you or someone you know is struggling with exercise behaviors, specialized treatment is available and lasting recovery is possible. Read more ...
Strong abs not only look great, they also help you perform better at sports, lift more weight in the gym, maintain good posture and even prevent potential back pain while seated at your desk. Try any or all of these ab moves individually, as an add-on to your workout or all together as an abs-centric circuit. If you’re performing them as a circuit, do 1 set of each move sequentially, with 15-30 seconds in between exercises, repeating the full circuit up to 3 times in total.
1. Mountain Climbers Pump up the cardio while activating your abs with this multi-tasking, calorie-blasting move. HOW TO DO IT: Begin in a full plank position with arms extended under shoulders and legs extended straight with feet hip width and abs drawn in tight (body should create a diagonal line from head to heels). Quickly bend right knee into chest (without rounding back) then immediately return to start. Do 3 sets of 20 quick (almost at a running pace), alternating reps.
Related: The “Eat a Whole Pizza” Workout
2. Side Hip Raise Fire up your obliques during this total-body exercise that provides a great complement to traditional crunch-style abs moves. HOW TO DO IT: Begin lying on one side, with your bottom elbow bent under your shoulder and your legs extended straight with hips and heels stacked and your top hand on your hip. Engage your abs and lift your hip off the floor and press up into a side plank position. Lower your hip lightly to the floor and then immediately repeat. Do 3 sets of 12 reps on each side.
3.Standing_Rotational_Chop This functional exercise works the abdominal muscles and lower back together, with an extra emphasis on the obliques. HOW TO DO IT: Begin standing with your feet wide and your knees slightly bent, holding onto the handle of an anchored cable or resistance band with your arms extended out in front of your lower chest. Brace your abs in tight to your spine and begin to chop your arms across your torso from side to side, keeping your hips steady while rotating your torso through the shoulders. (Adjust resistance as needed.) Do 3 sets of 15 reps. (Each side to side chop is 1 rep.)
4.One_Armed_Farmer’s_Walk It may not look like an abs move, but this single-arm variation of the farmer’s walk exercise will have your core muscles working overtime to stabilize your spine with every unevenly weighted step. HOW TO DO IT: Stand with your feet under your hips, holding 1 dumbbell or kettlebell to the side of your body with your palm facing in. Keeping your spine tall, abs engaged and shoulders square, take 5 steps forward, turn around and take 5 steps back to start. That’s 1 rep. Do 3 sets of 5 reps on both sides.
5.Burpee_Tuck_Jump This advanced double-whammy abs move is not only a dynamic way to work the core, it’s also a killer way to blast off major calories to help reduce body fat fast, which is crucial for showing off that six-pack! HOW TO DO IT: Begin standing with your feet hip-width apart and your arms by your sides. Squat down to the floor, bending your knees and pushing your hips back. Place your hands under your shoulders. Jump your legs back into a full plank position, bracing your abs in tight and immediately lower into a push-up tapping your chest lightly to the floor. Then jump your feet back into a squat position and swing your arms up and immediately jump straight up, tucking your knees into your chest. Land in a squat position and repeat as quickly as possible with good form. Do 3 sets of 5-10 reps.
6.V_Ups_This advanced move is a challenge for the abdominals and requires some flexibility, so feel free to modify by bending the knees as much as needed to build strength and mastery. HOW TO DO IT: Begin lying face up with your arms extended overhead and your palms facing up and legs out straight with your feet hip-width apart. Engage your abdominals and sit all the way up into a “V” position, lifting your legs and trying to touch the tops of your feet with your fingertips. Lower with control back to starting position. Try up to 3 sets of 10 reps.
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