Choosing LA Fitness to Increase Fitness and Improve Your Attitude

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Feb 042012

LA Fitness centers from outside appearances seem to be like every other fitness club around. They are packed with the best fitness equipment, aerobics classes, and all the things you would want, but there is a subtle difference.

The LA Fitness Difference Starts with Attitude

The difference is in the attitude you discover when you enter a LA Fitness center. How often have you walked into an exercise center and were completely ignored. You walked around looking at all of the gear and felt overwhelmed. You saw people participating in classes but you had no idea how to get started. They were excited to get you signed up, but then the staff’s enthusiasm died.

At LA Fitness you will encounter trainers, receptionists, and managers who live and breathe the fitness business. They are doing the job they love and it shows. They welcome you into the building and start asking you questions. You do not feel deserted. You will be shown around the facility and all the equipment is clearly explained. The best part is the time they take to discuss your fitness goals and to help you plan out a workout plan to get started.

If you want a little extra help every LA Fitness center has personal trainers on staff who can work with you one-on-one to get you up to speed fast. There is a big advantage to using a personal trainer as you get started. It is called motivation. Imagine waking up in the morning and knowing someone is waiting to meet you at the fitness center to coach you through a training session. You will not be tempted to put off working out. You get ready. You get to the fitness center and you meet your goals. Consider this option when you start out to improve your success.

Enjoy Working Out with Other Beginning or Advanced Members

One thing which will really excite you about your membership at LA Fitness is the fact all of their group classes are included in your monthly membership fees. You can join in a kickboxing class, yoga, tai chi, aerobics, aqua fit, boot camp, or many other group offerings.

Being part of a group can make exercise more fun and push you to workout harder. You will feel challenged by the instructors and your desire to keep up with other class members. Keep in mind you should always set your own pace dependent on your fitness level. Your LA Fitness instructor will remind you of this fact and pays attention to their students during exercise sessions.

Diversity is one of the most important aspects of staying focused on your fitness goals. You need to be able to change up your routines and keep your excitement high. LA Fitness offers more choices for working out than anyone. You can swim laps, jog around a track, lift weights, perform aerobics, play racquetball, or dozens of other methods of getting fit you can choose from, also.

LA Fitness provides a great balance between price, equipment, and the interactive help you need. When you get everything you need for a low price you attitude stays great and you stay committed to your fitness goals.

Jan 222012

La Fitness is a chain of fitness clubs with millions of members across the United States and Canada. They started back in 1984 with just one club, and now have over 500 locations.

They are known as a “super gym”, meaning that they have lots of facilities in each gym, such as swimming pools, squash and basketball courts etc, as well as the usual weight and cardio equipment. This means that La Fitness is well suited to cater for anyone, of any fitness level.

Below is a brief run down of what you will find in a typical La Fitness center.

Free Weights: LA Fitness have a wide variety of free weights available. They start at a very light weight, suitable for women or the elderly, up to extremely heavy weights that a bodybuilder would use. Free weight exercises are one of the best for toning and overall fitness. Free weights include such things as dumbbells and barbells.

Cardio Machines: The cardio area is the go-to spot for weight loss, and fat burning. That’s why cardio machines are a must for any gym. LA Fitness has a wide variety of machines, such as treadmills, rowing machines, ellipticals, bikes, and stair climbers. There are plenty of high quality machines that will be enough to satisfy even the most picky of cardio bunnies.

Group Classes: Sometimes when working out, it’s hard to get motivated. That’s why group classes are ideal because when you are in a group, you don’t want to be the first person to stop so you push yourself harder. All La Fitness gyms will have classes like aerobics, yoga, kickboxing, Zumba, spinning and more. Before you join a group class, make sure you do a lot of stretching, as they can be very intense and you don’t want to pull a muscle. Some classes will cost extra, but many are included in your monthly gym membership.

Swimming Pool: Swimming is one of the best cardio workouts to lose weight because you use your entire body, both upper and lower. It is also low impact, which means there is less stress on your joints and thus less chance of injury. The swimming pools at LA Fitness have three or more lanes, and the water quality is monitored regularly.

Basketball and Racquetball Courts: Basketball workouts are fantastic as cardio. LA Fitness also caters to basketball teams and leagues. If you are into racquetball, their facilities have hard-wood floors spanning the entire length, and glass that is shatter proof for your safety.

Spa and Sauna: After a tough workout, you can wind down and relax in La Fitness’s spa and sauna. Spas are usually found near the swimming pool, and the saunas are segregated and can be found in the mens or ladies locker rooms.

Personal Training: In order to achieve the best you can, some people like to hire personal trainers to help them. You might be concerned about the cost of personal trainers, but if you can afford it, it’s well worth the money. LA Fitness has well trained and qualified trainers that can help you improve your fitness.

Although these are great benefits that every LA Fitness gym offers, there are some downsides to using a large scale chain gym. You may want a more “personal” gym, where you can get to know other members. Smaller gyms with fewer clients will have a more “family” feel, and if this is what you prefer, than a large fitness center like LA Fitness may not be right for you. But if you like having a lot of facilities under the one roof, then give LA Fitness a try.

Oct 132011

The stomach area is usually the hardest, and last place you will lose fat when exercising and dieting. It’s stubborn, yet there is no magic cure to targeting fat loss from this area. However, when you combine the following exercises, with a low fat diet, you will see results within 4 weeks.

Unfortunately, you cannot just lose fat from your stomach. You need to follow the general fat loss principles and you will lose fat from your whole body, including your stomach. Fat is burnt when performing cardio, or aerobic exercises. This type of exercise is long duration, moderate intensity exercise. In other words, you elevate you heart rate to about 70% of your max heart rate, and sustain this for a minimum of 20 minutes.

When performing cardio exercise, your body uses fat stores as energy during the exercise. It uses fat stores from all over your body, as I mentioned earlier, there is no way of targeting burning fat just off your stomach. Research as shown for optimal weight loss, it is recommended that you perform 30 minutes of aerobic exercise, at an intensity of 70% of your max heart rate, at least 4 days a week.

Once you start burning fat form the area, by exercising and eating a low fat diet, its now time to tone an tighten the abdominal muscles. There is no point starting these exercise earlier as they will never be seen if there is a layer of fat covering them! The three best ab toning exercises are crunches, oblique crunches and the plank.

Crunches are basically 1/2 of a traditional sit-up. Start by lying on your back with knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Make sure your feet stay on the floor throughout the exercise, if they lift off you are using you hip flexor muscles more than your abs. Place your hands behind you neck. Never pull you neck with your hands, they are just there for support. Breathe in as you lift you head and shoulders off the floor towards your knees, then breathe out as you return to the starting position. Perform 3 sets of as many as you can!

Oblique crunches are a variation of the above exercise. As you lift you head and shoulders off the floor, twist your body as if trying to get your right shoulder to your left knee. This exercise targets the oblique muscles more than the rectus abdominus (six pack) muscles at the front of your stomach.

The final exercise is the plank. It is important you don’t hold your breathe when doing this exercise. You start by lying on your stomach. raise your body off the floor so your body-weight is supported on your elbows and feet. Try and hold this position for as long as possible. If you feel any back pain stop the exercise immediately.

In summary, the first step in losing stomach fat is starting a low fat diet and an aerobic exercise program. When you start losing fat, ad din resistance exercises and you will tone and strengthen the area, creating a six pack in no time!

This is a guest post by Susan. To learn more of the fastest way to lose weight off your stomach please visit Susan Johnsons blog here.

Workouts That Work – The Startling Problem With Your Workout

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Sep 012010

Do you see the problem with this statement, “Workouts that work”? It should be striking you as a very bad statement for one very simple reason. Do you know what it is?

This statement is completely backwards. Instead you need to learn to say “Work Your Workouts”. This statement will produce power, effort, results, and success in your workout efforts.

Workouts that work implies most workouts do not work, which is not a true statement. Most workouts can be highly effective when you commit to doing them with passion, commitment, and effort.

Let us take a look at a few of the most popular workouts and see if they truly work, or if people just fail to work them.

Pilates has become one of the hottest workout regimens in existence. It focuses on building core strength and stability. You will find a long list of supporters and lovers of this workout program and for great reasons. It creates lean, long, flexible muscles. It uses a combination of light resistance and stretching to improve your body.

Where Pilates attracts a great number of detractors is when they start complaining it does not burn off their excess fat and improve their cardiovascular fitness. Their complaints while being correct are unwarranted. Pilates does exactly what is claims. It produces better core strength, flexibility, and power.

Some people claim exercise bikes are one of the workouts that work for everyone. Once again they are correct in most ways. An exercise bike is fabulous at burning calories, improving cardiovascular fitness, and improving leg muscles. It is terrible at building core strength, better abs, and overall physical power.

Perhaps the greatest definition of workouts that work which exists today comes from Crossfit. They define fitness as being able to do any activity with above average capability. Their idea of workouts which work requires you train in a multitude of methods including sports, resistance training, stretching, cardio fitness, and more.

You may beginning to wonder what the point of all this is. Workouts that work can only be defined by the goals you set for yourself. All workouts work for their intended purpose. You must define your goal and then select a workout to match it.

If you want bigger muscles and power then do not buy an exercise bike or treadmill get yourself a home gym filled with resistance exercises. If you want to lose weight and get lean then stay away from the weight equipment and focus on aerobic exercises like running, cycling, and rowing.

You are in charge of creating your own workouts that work, and then learning to work the workout. You will quickly discover all workouts work, the majority just happen to not match your chosen goals.

Get out the pictures of how you want to look. Write down your fitness goals. Think about what is required to hit those goals in terms of physical motion and intensity and then the answer to your question of choosing workouts that work will become very obvious. You will be able to spot the proper workout for you from a mile away.

Tennis Workouts – Your Special Sport Requires Special Training

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Sep 012010

Name another sport which has the same physical requirements as tennis. The only one even close is racket ball. Tennis workouts must be designed to work on your specific needs, not the general needs of other sports.

Tennis requires quick lateral movement, rapid speed forward and back, rapid rotational power, and great flexibility. Here are a few ideas to help you improve your tennis workouts and gain maximum power and ability.

For serving and overhead slams you must have great downward power. One of the easiest exercises to perform is done with a medicine ball. Grip a medicine ball in both hands stretching upwards as high as possible. Go up on the tips of your toes. Now as fast as possible throw the ball down forcefully in front of your feet. Do this move furiously. This uses almost identical muscles as required for ultimate power in your serves and slams.

Swinging the racket with power requires great twisting or perpendicular power. You can accomplish this in two easy ways. The first is back to the medicine ball. Hold it in both hands extended in front of your waist. Twist to one side pulling the ball back as far as possible. Now unwind quickly throwing the ball with power into the wall.

You can perform almost the same motion using a cable pulley system in most gyms. The advantage of the pulley system is you can work on one arm at a time. Make sure to establish proper foot position for your swing, and then rotate your body in the fashion you use for striking the ball.

Building an explosive first step and leaping ability is one important part of great tennis workouts. We can steal a page from a football workout for this one. Get a box for jumping on and off of. Leap quickly up onto the box and then quickly leap down. Choose a box which challenges your leaping a little. On your landing do not land and stay stagnant. Land and take two quick steps, alternating between moving left, right, or backwards. This simulates what you do on the tennis court when you leap for a hit and then must move rapidly to recover.

Two more important exercises you should add to your routine are single leg squats and single leg calf raises. Single leg squats are performed by holding the weight and putting one leg up on a bench or block behind you. This makes sure the leg is not used. Bend to 90 degrees with the one leg and power back up. Use dumbbells for added weight when you can easily do your own body weight. Single leg calf raises are done in the same way only raising high on your toes to work the full motion of the lower leg.

Tennis workouts need to focus on the body parts and motions you will actually use on the court. If you train in general methods you can still improve but not to the degree of specializing your workout. Becoming a more powerful hitter, faster on the court, and a more explosive leaper is all a matter of training.

Rugby Workout – Fantastic Gains In Performance Through Proper Power Training

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Sep 012010

Rugby is a grueling sport requiring power, speed, agility, and sometimes grimacing explosive burst of energy. The proper rugby workout in the weight lifting gym can take your play to the extreme.

Designing your rugby workout is going to require you think carefully about your position. If you are a winger who need explosive acceleration, speed, and strong hand and shoulders to fight off opposing players, your needs are very different from a hooker who needs size and massive power. By choosing your exercises to match your position you can improve dramatically.

As an example, a winger should not spend a massive amount of time building muscle bulk, it is not needed. You would be much better served working on explosive speed and quickness. Use plyometric exercises like the box jump to increase you explosiveness. Use a variety of heights of boxes leaping quickly up on to the box, and then leaping back down. For a winger the landing and movement after hitting the ground is critical. On every fourth leap, land and then sprint. On the first sprint go hard to the left. The next sprint go hard to the right. On the final sprint, run backwards. Sprinting 2 to 5 yards is adequate.

A winger should work on having strong hands, arms, and shoulders, too. This can be accomplished with tricep extensions, barbell curls, and military presses. Work in higher reps, at about 15 to 20 reps per set. You are not concerned with bulk, but more with strength and endurance.

As a hooker your requirements are very different. You need massive bulk and pushing power. Bench presses, squats, and deadlifts should be the core of your training on one day per week. On another day, do Olympic lifts, specifically the power clean. By using this combination of lift you are going to develop mass, power, and explosiveness. If your opponents are not hitting the weights with the same intensity they will not be able to stand up to your power.

For the hooker you are wanting to vary your workouts. As mentioned above do heavy lifting 1 day each week for each style of power gaining. Keep the reps very low in the range of 2 to 5 reps working to maximize power gains, working with 80 to 100% of the maximum weight you can handle. Always strive to improve in each workout. You may wish to add another day or two of weight lifting to your schedule depending on your rugby workouts. You do not want to overtrain. If you do add two more days, these days are not for heavy lifting, but for speed lifting with lighter weights. This helps to develop fast twitch muscles, and increase muscle endurance. Never train over 1 hour.

No matter what position you play in rugby you can evaluate your needs and design a simple rugby workout in the weight room. You can develop power, explosiveness, and speed which makes your team unstoppable. The best teams are the ones who train like professionals.

Plus Size Workout Clothes – Sensational Looking Workout Attire

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Sep 012010

You must hate all those super centers sports departments, sporting goods stores in the mall, and fitness outfit shops. You have finally committed to getting in shape and working out and you need some plus size workout clothes before heading to the gym. You walk head into all those stores and they have nothing except boring ugly sweat pants and sweat shirts in plus sizes.

Before you get frustrated and decide to give up on the idea of working out with friends it is time to get busy shopping online. There is not a lack of plus size workout clothes it is simply your local stores do not feel they sell enough of the them to maintain a stock. When you start shopping the right places you can find outfits which look great, fit properly, and do not make you look fat.

One of the best and most recognized brands in exercise clothing is Danskin. You would think by all your local shopping they do not make anything in plus sizes. In reality they produce almost every one of their great looking outfits in sizes from tiny extra small sizes to a wide range of plus sizes. They understand exercise and the human body, and want to make sure you are comfortable and keep coming back to Danskin as you transition quickly down in sizes.

Many of the Danskin products are snug on the body which concerns many plus size customers. Just a quick word of advice. Danskin makes their clothes this way for a good reason. Your movement is less restricted with less problems with skin against skin abrasions. Danskin does have a line of looser fitting exercise clothes, too.

If you want to explore another popular brand which has a wide variety of plus size workout clothes take a look at Moving Comfort. Their outfits are stylish, comfortable, and fun to wear. You will look great as you hit the gym and workout. Their t-shirts are designed to avoid chafing and come in a wide variety of very bright colors to make sure you enjoy your attire.

Guys, if you need some plus size workout clothes there is only one choice which fits your personality perfectly. You have to take a look at Crazee Wear. The outfits are offered in plus sizes, look great, and are very comfortable. The name should be enough to make you want them, just so you can dress as Crazee as your exercise.

Needing to find plus size workout clothes should not be hard and frustrating, it should be fun and adventurous. You can find great styles, comfort, and the proper sizes by shopping online for your workout gear. Forget about all those local stores, they do not seem to care about your needs, you can find better choices on your own while saving money at the same time. Look great for each and every workout with great workout outfits in comfortable fitting sizes.

Sep 012010

Weighted medicine ball workouts can be a highly effective way to train your body. You can target almost every muscle in your body, producing gains in strength and flexibility. The range of motion allowed by the medicine ball makes it superior to many forms of resistance exercise, and with the added benefit of throwing, it is very effective.

Medicine ball workouts can be one of most efficient ways to improve your body when you have limited space and resources. They take up almost no room and the investment in buying a quality ball is very low.

Here are a few exercises you can do with a medicine ball to improve your body.

The Woodchopper – Start with your feet spread approximately shoulder width apart. Hold the ball high over head with both hands. Bring the ball down swinging it like an axe, coming between your legs. Maintain control all through the swing, not allowing yourself to get wildly out of control. Go back to the top position and repeat until you have done 20 reps.

The Squat Press – Hold the ball in front of you at chest level with both hands. Bend deeply at the knees. Now quickly stand to an upright position while extending both arms high about your head. The movement looks very similar to shooting a basketball. Do 20 reps.

Weighted Ab Crunches – Using the medicine ball for weight on your chest, do abdominal crunches lifting your head and shoulders. Do a minimum of 20 reps.

Seated Twist – Sit down on the floor with your legs in front of you. Holding the ball extended directly in front of you twist your body slowly side to side. Go as far as your range of motion allows. Do 20 reps to each side.

Toe Touches – Lying on your back bring your legs up to a 90 degree angle. With the ball held straight out behind you on the floor, lift with your arms and shoulders bringing the ball up to touch your toes. This one will give you a great burn. Do 20 reps.

Circles Swings – One of the most basic of the medicine ball workouts movements is the circle. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Hold the ball in both hands, down in front of your. Now with complete control bring the ball in a full circle going to the left. Once you are at the bottom reverse and go to the right. Complete 20 reps in both directions.

Medicine ball workouts are not difficult or complex. They are simple movements using the weight of the ball for added resistance. Due to the ease of movement, full range of motion, and resistance they are a favorite method of training for many trainers and sports fitness experts. They are easy on the joints and easy to handle. You can develop great physical condition with just a simple medicine ball. Give it a try, it is fun and challenging at the same time.

Light Weight Lifting – Training Heavy Is Not The Only Way To A Great Body

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Sep 012010

You see guys hit the gym to hit the heavy poundage and pack on the muscle. They work hard and intense and their bodies show it with bigger muscles. What if your goal is not huge bulging muscles but a lean, fast, trim, fit body? Then light weight lifting may be an ideal program for you.

Light weight lifting is not intended to pack on muscle, it is intended to be used at slightly higher speeds to gain aerobic benefits and to stimulate muscles to grow slightly. Your muscle growth can only be as great as the overload you cause on your muscles. Bigger muscles occur when the muscles must grow to adapt to the stress being placed on them by your workouts.

Lighter weights with higher reps do not cause the same style of stress. The stress they cause are aerobic in nature requiring your body to become more efficient at endurance, blood flow, and recovery. These are all excellent benefits if they fit within your goals.

Light weight lifting should be done using the same types of exercises you would do to pack on muscle mass. Squats, lunges, bench presses, barbell curls, and all your other common exercises are great candidates for lighter training.

One mistake many power athletes make is believing they should do light workout in between their heavy workouts. This is a real detriment to the continued growth of their muscles. If you are working to increase muscle size the time between lifts needs to be for resting the muscles to allow them to heal, grow, and adapt.

Light weight lifting is a great activity for older lifters, too. It helps to increase balance and stability. It increases the strength of your small muscles which are responsible for all the minor adjustments to balance.

If you choose to start lifting with lighter weights you need to adjust your repetitions. Doing 20 to 25 reps per set is not out of line. You are creating improvement through higher reps, not the intensity of each rep. This does not mean your workouts will become longer. Your reps need to be slightly faster, too. This helps to stimulate an aerobic response along with helping to reshape your body.

Should a bodybuilder or strength athlete ever do light weight lifting? There are certain times it makes perfect sense. If you have been injured and are just getting started again do light weight lifting for a week or two to get your muscles back in to shape before you start blasting them again. Just do not anticipate this is a method to greater muscle size, it is just a way to get your muscles used to working out again.

Light weight lifting can play many important roles from aerobic training to injury rehabilitation. Choosing light lifting is making the choice you want a different style of body. Your electing to have a longer, leaner, smaller body. If you want to build massive muscles you will still need to crank up the weight, but that is not the goal everyone strives for. Choose your goal and start training to attain your perfect body.

Lift Weights For Improved Performance In All Aspects of Life

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Sep 012010

With the wide variety of exercise programs you can try ,choosing the right one can become very difficult. One form of exercise should always be an easy choice. No matter what other form of exercise you practice, you should lift weights to enhance your body and workouts.

You are probably wondering why you should lift weights if your main goal is cardiovascular fitness and you are already doing an aerobics class. When you venture into weight lifting some pretty amazing changes begin to happen to your body. You increase you muscle mass, even if it is only slightly. You increase your strength, usually in great measures. You increase you muscle endurance. You increase your metabolism. All of these added bonuses add up to a healthier more fit body.

In the example of enhancing your aerobics class, keep in mind your initial reason for starting the class. For a very high percentage of people it is to lose weight. Aerobics is great for burning off calories and getting your cardiovascular fitness to new levels. When you add in weight lifting on alternative days you increase your ability to burn fat and to lose weight. Increased muscle means more active lean tissue requiring energy. You will see your body fat percentage drop much faster by adding muscle along with continuing a good aerobics program.

Another group which benefits tremendously from strength training is senior citizens. If you are over 60 years old your muscle strength is probably dropping off, and you may even begin to have occasional issues with balance. As you get older these issues increase. When you lift weights you increase your muscle strength, you build up all your supporting muscles and you balance improves dramatically. The problems you experience with balance or tripping easily is the result of muscles which do not have adequate strength and cannot react fast enough. Lift weights and those problems will disappear into history.

Mothers do you lift weights? If you are not lifting weights as part of an exercise program you are really losing out. Increasing your strength is an effective method to keep up with the kids. Think about this obvious fact, as your baby goes from being a newborn to five years old they change in weight dramatically. They still want your attention and want to be picked up. They suddenly have toys which weigh 30 to 50 pounds instead of toys weighing only a couple pounds. If your strength is not increasing along with your growing child it is difficult to keep up with them.

The reason most of people never think about lifting weights as part of their normal routine is because they have no desire to build bulging muscles. What you might be overlooking is the simple fact when you lift weights it does not need to be with the intensity and weights of a bodybuilder, but can simply be a method to increase your strength, flexibility, and metabolism to serve you in daily life. Lift weights and see how much improvement you can have in your own life.

Fitness Workouts – Quick Results From The Best Workout Possible

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Sep 012010

Quick results are easy when you know the best fitness workouts for you. Hopefully you read the opening line carefully, if not, go back and read it again. Fitness workouts are a dime a dozen and almost everyone of them works. Before you can get quick results you must first make some quick decisions.

What are your fitness goals? This question sounds so simple but the answers from people vary so greatly. Do you want to lose weight, increase cardiovascular fitness, pack on muscle, get stronger, become lean, or improve in a sport? The answer to this type of question is going to determine the needs of your workout and get you on the road to fast success. You can answer with more than one choice, too.

A great example would be to say, “I want to lose weight, about 20 pounds, increase my cardiovascular fitness, lower my blood pressure, and get lean.”

When you read the example above your fitness workouts need to be highly focused on aerobic training. Aerobic exercises like an exercise bike, aerobics dance, jogging, and walking can all lead to increased weight loss, better cardio fitness, lower blood pressure, and leanness. Focusing on doing 30 to 45 minutes of exercise 5 to 7 days per week will get you started on quick results. You would need to modify your diet to reduce calories a little, too.

Another example would be to say, “I want to increase my speed, become stronger, gain 20 pounds of muscle, and prepare for football season.”

This example requires a completely different fitness workouts to reach your goals. You would want to plan on weight training 3 days per week doing basic heavy lifting to increase strength and power. You would want to plan on the other 3 days to be focused on running, but not in a jogging style. Go to the track and jog the curves and half the straight areas, then sprint for 40 to 60 yards at high speed. You may even want to do a little zig zag running to improve your lateral speed and movement.

The entire point of this article is let you see the importance of considering your goals in concert with your fitness workout planning. You are almost certainly trying to get fit with a motive, few people just suddenly say, “I want to get fit”, they have an ulterior motive. Choose your goals and then start choosing exercises which lead you to it, not away from it.

Too many people want to get lean, strong, and powerful looking and then buy an exercise bike to get fit. They will get fit. They will get lean. They will not get strong and powerful. You would need to plan your fitness workouts to include strength conditioning along with the exercise bike to reach your actual goals and dreams. Working out is always more fun, more successful, and kept with over the long haul when you are working towards you real goals. Create your goals and desires first, then you can be guaranteed to have quick results.

Fitness Programs – Exciting Ways To Get Fit And Stay Fit

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Sep 012010

Getting fit can be so boring. You sit down on your exercise bike at home, stare at the wall and pedal away for 30 minutes to an hour. You climb on the treadmill in the basement, take off walking to nowhere in your home, listening to some songs on your iPod, and dream of being anywhere else. Fitness programs do not need to be boring and monotonous they can be filled with fun and excitement.

If you really want to get your heart pumping, meet a wildly alive group of people, and have a great time try joining a Tae Bo class. These classes are filled with fast movement, punching, kicking, music, loud commands, and a great time. You will find yourself laughing and joking at the end of the class as you all come down from your strenuous workout.

Do you find getting sweaty a real bore? You hate the feeling of sweat rolling off your body as you workout. Then you may want to choose a completely different direction. It is time to jump into the swimming pool. You can choose the organized fun found in a water aerobics class which is great exercise. You could choose to hit the pool when it is a little less crowded and swim laps. Changing strokes on each lap can help keep your swimming interesting.

Fitness programs do not mean you must stay inside to workout. Get rid of the exercise bike and get a real bike. Take your fitness routine on the road. It is hard to get bored when you are seeing other live people along the path, enjoying nature, and traveling along. The wind in your face will feel great creating a very invigorating workout.

Since we are talking about heading outdoors, turn your idea about exercise completely around. Instead of a boring walk or jogging through the city lace on some hiking boots and head to the local hiking trails. Walking along a natural trail is both exciting and a great way to increase your overall fitness.

Jumping back into the gym, one of the most interesting and effective ways to train your body is a circuit training program. Your fitness programs will be filled with a list of many different exercises you do one after another. You keep moving quickly and you end up exercising every part of your body very effectively.

There are so many different styles of fitness programs you should never allow yourself to become bored or ineffective. Rotate into different programs when you find yourself becoming stagnant and keep having a great time. When you are excited and having fun in your workout program you continue going day after day and producing the results you want. When you allows yourself to become bored you skip sessions, you do not work as hard, and you get less effective results. Get out there and have fun in your fitness routines, fitness should never be boring.

Fitness Ball Workouts – Terrific Workouts In The Privacy of Your Own Home

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Sep 012010

The great thing about fitness ball workouts is how they can be used in fitness classes and just as easily be done right at home. A fitness ball is one of the lowest cost pieces of fitness equipment and adds tremendous flexibility to your workouts.

You may have already ran to the store and bought an exercise ball and now it sits there in your home. You are trying to figure out what your next step should be. Here are a few great fitness ball exercises to get you started exploring the fun of getting fit.

Elevated Push-ups – If you want to develop your chest this is a great exercise. Place your feet and ankles up on the exercise ball and assume a standard push-up position with your hands on the floor. You perform a standard push-up but with the added resistance and balance required by using the exercise ball.

Balanced Push-ups – If the elevated push-up is too difficult it is time to turn around. Keep your toes on the floor and place your hands on the top of the ball. Do your push-ups from this position. You will discover the push-up requires less arm strength but greater balance.

Back Extensions – To improve the strength of your lower back. Rest your stomach across the exercise ball with your shoulders extending forward beyond the surface of the ball. While keeping your back straight bring your shoulders down bending lightly at the waist, then straighten again by using the power of your back.

Crunches – Abdominal Power – Your fitness ball workouts can include several varieties of crunches to improve your core power. The first is to lay on your back on the floor. Put your feet and lower legs on the fitness ball, then proceed to do ab crunches by rolling your head and shoulders up off the floor. Another crunch is the core crunch. Kneel on down facing the fitness ball placing your lower arms and wrists on the ball. Press your elbows and wrists deeply into the ball by crunching your abdominal muscles. A final variety of ab crunch is to keep your feet on the floor, sit with your buttocks and hips on the ball, and then lean back. Perform your ab crunches from this position. It requires more muscles to maintain balance increasing the effectiveness of the exercise.

Superman – Build Core Strength – The superman is one of the classic moves in fitness ball workouts. Keeping your toes on the floor, place your hips on the ball. Reach above and ahead of yourself in the position of superman flying. Work on holding the position and balance using your back muscles and abs. It looks easy, but is much harder than it appears.

This is just a small sampling of the exercises you can included in fitness ball workouts. You can target almost any body part using your fitness ball, and improve your overall fitness. While a ball may be the simplest form of exercise equipment it can be one of the most effective, too.

Exercise Programs – Secrets to Choosing The Right Exercise Program for You

 Exercises, Fitness Tips  Comments Off on Exercise Programs – Secrets to Choosing The Right Exercise Program for You
Sep 012010

Choose the right exercise programs has become a dizzying experience. Great fitness centers have programs coming out their ears. They have water aerobics, weight training, aerobic boxing, water aerobics, exercise machines, and many other choices. How are you ever going to choose the right program for you?

Do you know the number one way most women choose an exercise program? They go to the same class one of their friends is going to. They have no idea whether it will help them achieve the goals they have in mind, but their friend wanted them to come along.

Guys, quit laughing. Do you know how guys choose an exercise program? They look on the list for the most masculine sounding class possible and sign up. It may not have anything to do with their physical needs, but it does stroke the ego.

Choosing the right exercise programs must start with knowing what you want to accomplish. Are you wanting to lose weight and get slim? Are you wanting to gain muscle? Are you wanting to feel stronger and more powerful while getting lean? How do you want your body to look in one month, six months, and one year?

If you are wanting to gain muscle you have only one choice. You must lift weights or use resistance machines. Muscles only grow through being forced to adapt by lifting heavier weights. Nothing else works consistently.

Losing weight and getting slim is a really challenging goal. You need to define your desires even further. Do you want to look long and lean? Then you may want to try Pilates. Do you want to look athletic like a runner? A step aerobics class could be the perfect choice. Do you want to look stronger and more athletic like a gymnast or Olympic swimmer? Then lifting weights is the best option.

Now it is time to get really serious in considering what is best for you and your body. Choosing multiple exercise programs is usually the ideal situation. Choose a program for aerobic training you love and will stick to. If you love fast action, powerful movements, and grunting try a Tae Bo, Kickboxing, or Boxing exercise program. If you love to dance with a full room of women jump into a Jazzercise class. Do your aerobics classes or training 3 to 4 times each week.

For the second part of your program get started in a strength conditioning or weight lifting program. The added strength and muscle will help firm and condition your body. You will increase your metabolism with a little extra muscle. You will become stronger. Do your resistance training 2 to 3 times per week. A good schedule is to do aerobic or cardiovascular exercise on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Do your strength exercise programs on Tuesday and Thursday.

By combining two different exercise programs you can get a much fitter, stronger, and healthy body. This combination helps to keep away injuries from repetitive routines, and keeps your interest high. It is a winning way to design your exercise plan.

Endurance Workouts – Use Variety For Improved Endurance

 Fitness Tips  Comments Off on Endurance Workouts – Use Variety For Improved Endurance
Sep 012010

When you think about endurance workouts what pops into mind? Jogging, exercise bikes, treadmills, swimming laps, elliptical machines, and rowing machines top almost every list. Do the thought of doing these exercises day after day make you cringe?

Endurance workouts do not need to be boring. You can create as much variety and fun as you want. A great example of this is Tae Bo. When you are hearing a trainer barking out commands, punching, kicking, twisting, turning, and being highly explosive you have no time to get bored. The entire class is grunting, shouting, and having a great time. The sweat is flowing, hearts are pounding, and endurance is being challenged.

Maybe you are one of the people who only loves to have weight bars in your hands. You have tried to stay away from endurance workouts. It is time to take a new look at your weight equipment. Circuit training with weights can give you great endurance training while still hitting the iron. You will be lifting much lower weights and moving very quickly. Your goal is to get your heart rate up and keep it there for 30 to 60 minutes. Using a wide range of larger moves. Lunges, squats, dead lifts, Olympic cleans, and other big movements allow you to engage more muscles and get the heart going. Do not be tempted to stand around doing curls, they are not going to engage enough muscles to be effective in endurance training.

Another form of endurance training which is complete fun is obstacle courses. Many parks and fitness areas have setup courses to challenge you. By running from station to station and working through the obstacles you can keep the heart pounding and build great endurance.

We talked about circuit training in relation to weights, but you can use it for a wide variety of exercises, too. Setup a circuit which includes jumping rope, hitting a punching bag, high speed, jumping jacks, and other fast moving exercises. You can avoid boredom by regularly rotating in new exercises.

Where many people find jogging boring, you can add a great amount of variety. Start by jogging a short distance then breaking into a fast run for 40 yards. Go back to jogging a while then challenge yourself with a sprint again. By varying the pace and intensity your interest stays high and your endurance workouts become even more effective.

As you are beginning to see, endurance training is not isolated to only a few activities. You can find a wide variety of ways to drive your body to greater levels of endurance. Do not let boredom stop your workouts. The best way to stay highly interested is to choose several different varieties and switch between them. Your body will pay you back with higher levels of fitness due to the cross training efforts. Endurance workouts can be great fun if you do not settle for doing things the same old ways.

Sep 012010

How do you define fitness? Many people watch an amazing performance by a marathon runner winning the Olympic marathon and are convinced he must be the fittest man alive. Then you watch the 2 days of intense activity of the decathlon and are sure the winner must be the most fit. As you flip channels you see an ironman triathlon underway and become equally sure the winner is as fit as possible. When you choose to become Crossfit you will begin to understand how fitness should really be defined, and discover the real truth.

Many fitness programs are designed to specialize your body for one activity. A great example is bodybuilding. A bodybuilder is strong, lean, muscular, and usually has good cardiovascular fitness. You could term him as being very fit. In the Crossfit method of measuring fitness it would not be so sure.

The Crossfit definition takes a very unique look at fitness. The first part of the qualification is the general qualifications of cardiovascular endurance, stamina, strength, flexibility, power, coordination, agility, balance, and accuracy.

The second portion of the definition is even more encompassing. You must be able to perform at above average levels at any task. Yes, any task you can imagine is included. Take a box fill it with 100 or more tasks, athletic sports, physical activities, and draw one out and perform it. You must be able to do it at above average in order to be Crossfit. An amazing definition of extreme fitness.

The third portion of the Crossfit definition gets into some very scientific measurements of the three metabolic pathways of energy in humans. We are going to skip this discussion for now.

Taking our bodybuilder and running him through just the first two parts of the Crossfit definition leaves us with some serious questions about his fitness. How good is his coordination, agility, balance, and accuracy? At times many power athletes suffer in these areas, and in the Crossfit definition this indicates a lack of fitness. Looking into the second portion leaves even greater questions. How effective is the bodybuilder going to be when you pull out a card which says swim 1 mile in the ocean? Some may be very capable of this task and others would fail in the first 100 yards.

Crossfit training takes into consideration creating an extremely well rounded workout which includes diversity at its core. You cannot continually specialize in one type of movement and reach the fitness levels required to be Crossfit.

Back to our opening questions about who is the fittest person the marathon runner, the decathlete, or the ironman triathlete? Most likely it comes down to a close race between the decathlete and triathlete. They both work on a wide variety of body skills, motions, strength, and endurance. A Crossfit athlete is prepared for anything, in any walk of life for a firefighter, mother, full contact karate contestant, or even a professional football player. Do not just get fit, get Crossfit.

Cindy Crawford Workout – Can Cindy Make You Look Like A Super Model?

 Fitness Tips, Weight Loss  Comments Off on Cindy Crawford Workout – Can Cindy Make You Look Like A Super Model?
Sep 012010

Get ready to transform your body. You too can make millions by being a super model. The Cindy Crawford Workout is the answer to your prayers. Wait a minute, have you lost your mind?

Before you run out to Amazon, Ebay, or the store to buy the Cindy Crawford Workout you need to do some serious soul searching. Are you buying the program because you want to watch Cindy or because you are serious about getting fit? If you are serious about getting fit, it is time to talk.

The facts are very simple, the Cindy Crawford Workout is nothing special. If you really are serious about looking different you can make a much better choice. Let us get started where you should start any decisions about working out. What do you look like today?

The average buyer of Cindy’s plan is overweight and out of shape. If this fits you, then here is some great ideas. Instead of spending money on Cindy’s program buy a fitness ball. The cost of a fitness ball is very low, and the number of exercises you can do are almost unlimited. You can build more muscles, work on cardio fitness, and flexibility. It is a highly effective way to workout.

Take another look at your body. How much do you want to change your body shape? Setting up a home gym with a low cost exercise bike and a few dumbbells is a very effective way to start burning more calories, reshape your body, and develop a body like Cindy’s.

If you are questioning the wisdom of these statements it is time for you to hit the garage sales in your town. You can bet you are going to find the Cindy Crawford Workout sitting on some one’s table. It is nothing special, unless you want to watch Cindy.

If you really want a workout which if going to transform your body look into the programs from the Biggest Loser, Tae Bo, or a Martial Arts fitness program. These programs are going to get you going and working to change your body. If you want a true expert in changing women’s physiques check into Denise Austin.

Cindy Crawford is one of the most beautiful super models of all time. She has one of the most sensational bodies in history. Her program can be successfully used, but it is not the best program available for any purpose.

Set your goals and then seek out a program which matches your goals. If you are not sure, then take your money and invest in one session with trainer in a fitness center to discuss your goals and have them advise you on the proper forms of exercise to change your body.

The Cindy Crawford Workout is a great video to watch and enjoy the elegance and beauty of one our most beautiful women, but take the time to evaluate your real goals, not Cindy’s.

Breathing Exercises for Anxiety – Reduced Stress Through Proper Breathing

 Exercises, Fitness Tips, Health  Comments Off on Breathing Exercises for Anxiety – Reduced Stress Through Proper Breathing
Sep 012010

Anxiety, nervousness, and fear all have one thing in common. They can be reduced by taking control of our bodies. Breathing exercises for anxiety can be a very effective way to release or reorganize your feelings and release stress.

Are you questioning why this might work? Stop and think about how your body reacts in moments of anxiety and fear. You get tight. Your breathing become shallow and faster. Your mind is going a mile per minute and is running out of control.

Breathing exercises for anxiety helps you accomplish two things. The first is physiological. You are taking control of your breathing response on purpose. The second thing is you are taking control of your thoughts. You are changing your mental focus from the anxiety to controlling your breathing.

To get started find a place you can sit down comfortably. If you cannot sit, then find a relaxing place to sit you can practice your breathing exercises standing or laying down.

Make sure you keep your back straight but relaxed. The simplest method of breathing exercises for anxiety is to breathe in deeply for a count of five. Then gently release the breath releasing it slowly for a count of five. Make sure you do not hesitate, or catch, your breath in between the inhale and exhale. You do not need to hold the breath. Practice this rate of breathing for two to five minutes.

Another variety of this method is to inhale for five seconds and then allow the breath out in five short bursts of one second each. The benefit in this method is not as much physiological as it is aiding in changing mental focus. You will need to think about your breathing a little more allowing you to release anxious thoughts.

As you practice either of these breathing exercises for anxiety it is a good idea to close your eyes and relax. Try to fall into a meditative state where you only focus on the breathing in and out. You will feel your body and mind begin to relax as you change focus.

Some people report a higher feeling of relaxation by focusing on breathing in through their nose and out through their mouth. The only way you will discover which works best for you is to give it a try. For one session of deep breathing try using only your mouth and see how it feels. The next time try using your nose for all your intake. You will quickly know what feels natural and proper to you.

The other physiological advantage to practicing these forms of exercises is the increased levels of blood oxygenation. This allows your brain to receive more oxygen, think more clearly, and can help you relax.

Breathing exercises for anxiety do not need to be difficult in order to be effective. Step away from the anxiety and troubling thoughts by taking a few deep breaths and regaining control of your mind. You will discover you have more control over anxiety than you ever thought possible.

Boxing and Weight Lifting – Explosive Power and Speed

 Bodybuilding, Fitness Tips  Comments Off on Boxing and Weight Lifting – Explosive Power and Speed
Sep 012010

The confusing world of boxing strikes many new boxers with fear of hitting the weight room. You hear all the fearful thoughts of lifting weights slowing your punch, making your feet slow, and opening you up to a faster opponent. Boxing and weight lifting do not need to be exclusive, they are a great pairing if done properly to build endurance, speed, and explosive punching power.

What kind of boxer do you wish to be? If you want to have knock out power you need to stop and think where all of this power is going to come from. A powerful knockout puncher is going to have strong arms, strong shoulders, strong rotational muscles in their upper torso, and powerful legs. The power of the punch comes from the floor all the way through the end of your glove.

When you are wanting to build knockout power combining boxing and weight lifting training is the perfect road to take. Where many lifters are focused on only building size and massive power your focus will be completely different. You need to focus on several aspects of weight lifting for the greatest success.

The first area is to lift for power. Do this area with focus on basic moves and staying within a limited schedule of lifting. A few sets with reasonable weights is what you wish to shoot for. Focus on exercises which work large groups of muscles. Bench press, squats, military presses, and dead lifts are good basic exercises to increase your strength without making you slow.

The second area is to work on explosive fast power. Holding dumbbells and jumping, high speed cleans bringing the bar from the floor to your chest, and light weight fast squats are all good for increasing powerful speed. Focus on speed in these lifts to improve your power through the speed of your punches.

The last area is not technically weight lifting, but is crucial to include when you start lifting. Make sure you do a wide range of stretches, and body weight exercises to keep your joints and muscles long, lean, and flexible. This is the area which keeps you fast with a full range of motion.

When you combine boxing and weight lifting you are not heading down a road to failure but a road many of the world champions in boxing have already traveled. They became world champions by going beyond what other athletes were willing to do. Champions like Manny Pacquio, Evander Holyfield, and Mike Tyson all used weight training to increase power. Are you ready to enter the arena of champions, or stay an average boxer?

When you hear other boxers talking about how boxing and weight lifting do not go together check into their records. You will discover their knockouts are non-existent. You will discover when you see boxers who hit the weights, at least modestly, they have more strength, better power, improved ability to absorb punches, and more knockouts. Winners train at a higher level and it shows.

Boxers Workout – Knockout Your Fat With Workouts Inspired By Boxers

 Fitness Tips, Weight Loss  Comments Off on Boxers Workout – Knockout Your Fat With Workouts Inspired By Boxers
Sep 012010

Think about the fitness level of various professional athletes. Can you name anyone more fit than a top ranked professional boxer? They are lean, strong, have excellent endurance, and can take a pounding but keep on going. Using a boxers workout can help you get into the same kind of excellent shape but does not require getting punched in the face.

The key in any boxers workout comes down to basic circuit training techniques. You must have great endurance to make it through 10 to 15 rounds of boxing. The only way to achieve this level of endurance is to train hard and long.

You must have a strong body both to deliver blows and to endure the punishment of getting hit. Building a powerful body requires resistance training either in the form of body weight exercises or weight lifting.

Here is a very simple example of a boxers workout you can either use, or modify to fit your particular needs.

To develop hand power and arm endurance use weighted gloves and shadow box for about 60 seconds. Keep the hands moving fast punching at different levels. Your feet need to be dancing the entire time, too.

Move instantly over to a jump rope and jump rapidly for 30 to 60 seconds. Your feet should stay together and spin the rope rapidly.

Drop down to the floor, it is time to develop arm and chest strength. Start doing push-ups as fast as possible for the next 60 seconds. You want to keep count and attempt to improve the number of push-ups completed in each workout.

Quickly roll over on your back and start doing ab crunches. Again, repeat the crunches for 60 seconds squeezing the ab muscle tightly at the top of the movement. Your lower back stays flat on the floor as your head and shoulders rock upward.

Back to your feet. If you have some dumbbells or a barbell grab them. Do bicep curls for 30 seconds working up to at least 15 reps, then add weight. Next switch to doing presses from your shoulders to straight above your head for 30 seconds. Work to get to 15 reps and then add weight.

You are ready to start all over again. Do this rotation of exercises for 3 full passes. Move quickly on each exercise with little rest in between exercises. This boxers workout is inspired by Earnest Hemingway, and is one used by many young boxers as they get started. You will lose weight, get in great physical shape, improve speed, and power with this simple routine.

The biggest key to making any boxers workout work for you is not in the complexity of the routine, but in your commitment to work through the burn. Your body is going to feel very challenged to accomplish all the tasks laid out in front of you. Once you master these exercises you will know why boxers are among the fittest men in the world because you will be, too.