Tag Archives: Muscle

Pre-Workout Exercises 14: Warm Up For Abs

 Sit Up

Mostly weight loss routines involve that belly block which you want to reduce. Abdominal muscles are strongest and require very advanced workout. Abdominal muscles are also very sensitive and require care as they are link with your back. So to prevent injuries and damage warm up for abs are essential. Below are some warm up exercisesbefore your situps.

There are no specific exercise for warming up your abs. I before starting my actual abs routine I start with stretch as mention earlier, 20 minutes cardio routine, lunges and jumping jacks. My work out routine mainly consists of abs exercises. Above mentioned warm up increase my heart rate and I am sweating severely. After that as my warm up of abdominal muscles I perform 50 sit up.

So mainly your abdominal warm up is preparation of your actual work out routine. Exercise consisting of your warmup routine done in small reps would be well consider as your warm up.

SIT UPS

Lie straight on your back, lying face up on the floor with knees bent and feet flat. Feel free to tuck your feet under a fixed object if you feel the need, but only if you don’t suffer from lower back pain.

The movement begins by curling the shoulders towards the pelvis, with hands gently placed behind or below the ears. Try to keep your eyes on the ceiling even when you curl forward. Avoid placing the hands behind the head itself as using them to exert force on the neck can cause injury. Good practice is for the hands to lightly support the weight of the head, so that the neck flexor muscles can relax during the movement. Do not jerk the head forward with your hands.

Slowly contract your abdominals and come up to an angle of no more than 35 degrees – there’s no need to go further than this – and exhale as you crunch forward.

It’s important to focus on working the abdominal muscles and not the hips and also to keep your chin off your chest. The lower back should not leave the floor which will make the curl up an effective isolation exercise for the abdominals. Start with 10 reps and after 2 days increase 1.

Once you’ve reached the 35 degree position, hold for one or two seconds before gently lowering yourself to the floor. Inhale on the way down and repeat. Focus on natural, rhythmic breathing as you continue to perform the exercise.

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Pre-Workout Warm Up Exercises 10: Shoulder/Arms/Triceps

Mobility of the arms and shoulders is essential for a safe, strong workout. Before diving into a swim routine or a game of volleyball, it’s smart to warm up your upper body. Any activity that uses the arms and shoulders could cause injury if those muscles aren’t properly stretched out.

Shoulder Circles

Start with a simple shoulder rotation. While standing with your feet slightly apart, lift yourshoulder circles left shoulder to your ear. Take the shoulder backwards, down, around and up in one continuous, smooth motion. Repeat the move up to 10 times, then switch directions for another 10 repetitions. Repeat the whole routine on the right shoulder. Be sure your back and chest do not move. Only your shoulders should be in motion during this stretch.

Arm Circles

With your feet shoulder-width apart, hold your arms straight out to make a ”T” with yourarm circles upper body. Make clockwise circles with your arms, starting with a small range of motion and working up to circles that use your full range of motion. Do 10 to 15 reps, and then reverse direction. For a more intense warm up, start slow and then ramp up the speed to fully engage the muscles you’ll use for your workout. Do this for 10 to15 seconds.

Tricep Extensions

Triceps are the muscles on the back of your upper arm. For this exercise, grip a 2 to 10triceps extensions pound weight with both hands. While either sitting or standing, start with the weight above your head. Keep your shoulders steady but bend the elbows back, lowering the weight behind your head. Lift the weight back up until the arms are fully extended to the starting position. Do three sets of 10 to 15 reps.

Bicep Warm Up

Biceps, on the front of the upper arms, can be warmed up with light dumbbells. Hold abiceps curl light dumbbell in each hand, and sit backwards on a chair or use preacher bench so that you have something to rest your elbows against. Start with your arms curled in, dumbbells at shoulder height. Lower your arms until they are fully extended before bringing them back to the starting position. Perform three sets of 10 to 15 reps. This exercise may also be done with a barbell without added weight.

Regards,

Hi Fitness Instructor

Pre-WorkOut Warm Up Exercise 8: Squats Jump

SQUATS

Squat jumps are a great way to add intensity to your workouts and really raise the heart rate. This is an advanced exercise that is high impact, so protect your joints by landing with soft knees. If the impact is too much, you can do the move without jumping. If you’ve never tried this move, take your time and ease into it with small jumps. If you feel discomfort or pain, avoid this exercise.

  1. Begin with feet about hip-distance apart.
  2. Squat as low as you can, keeping the knees behind the toes.
  3. Jump up as high as you can, taking the arms overhead.
  4. Land with soft knees back into your squat and repeat for 30-60 seconds.

Regards,

Hi Fitness Instructor

Pre Workout Warmup Exercise 2: Jumping Jacks

Jumping jacks are an exercise to use primarily for Jumping Jackswarming up before a fitness activity.

After stretching out, nothing gets your entire body warmed up like a set of jumping jacks. Before sports, complete a five-minute set of jumping jacks to get your body going. Not only do you engage most of your muscles during this exercise, but you also increase the volume of blood and oxygen that is moved throughout your body.Jumping jacks are fairly easy to do.

All you have to do is stand tall in a safe area that is conducive for doing exercises. Engage your core while standing with your arms beside you and feet together. Begin by bending your knees slightly and jump out to the sides with each foot while thrusting your arms over your head simultaneously. Quickly, jump back into place and repeat the exercise. Continue repeating jumping in and out until you’ve reached your goal. Intensify by accelerating your speed.

The Move: Jumping Jacks

Besides being a great warm-up exercise, jumping jacks are an excellent form of aerobic exercise and they can help to condition and tone your body. Work out for 20 minutes or more a day with jumping jacks and find you have more stamina, endurance and are in better overall shape. You can also get your heart rate up significantly and expand your lungs while doing jumping jacks. Completing 20 minutes of jumping jacks produces similar results as jogging for 20 minutes.

Regards,

Hi Fitness Instructor

Pre-Workout Warmup Exercise-1: Stretching Before Walking

Stretching Before Walking

Hitting the pavement — or the treadmill deck —

Without warming up your body can lead to injury. One way to warm up is with a trio of slow, gentle stretches that prime major leg muscles for the work you’re about to give them.Increasing the blood flow to your muscles before you stretch them is another vital step in preventing injury. Walk or jog slowly, either moving forward or in place, for at least five minutes before you embark on your stretching routine. Once your blood is pumping and your muscles are heated, move on to the stretches. Stretches work best when you breathe deeply and slowly, hold the stretch for 15 to 30 seconds and keep the muscles relaxed.

Hamstrings Stretch
stretch hamstring bench

You can stretch your hamstrings while standing or lying on your back. To stretch themHamstring strekch while standing, keep your left leg firmly on the floor and prop your right leg out in front of you at a 45-degree angle supported on a bench. Keep your back straight and gently bend slightly forward with your hands on your right thigh. For the lying stretch, lie on your back with your right leg extended and left knee bent and its foot on the ground. Wrap a towel or strap around your right foot, holding one strap end in each hand, and gently lift the strap and your leg. Switch legs and repeat for either stretch.

Calves Stretch

You have two options for stretching your calves, again either standing or on the ground.calf stretches Stand and stretch by placing your left foot firmly on the ground and your right foot slightly forward with the foot flexed and heel on the ground. Sit to stretch your calves with both legs extended and a towel or strap wrapped around your right foot. Flex your right foot and gently lift the towel with one hand holding each end of it. Switch legs and repeat for either stretch.

Quadriceps Stretch

stretch quadricepsquadraceipQuad stretching also has two options. For the standing option, plant your left foot firmly on the ground and bend your right knee back, with your foot behind you reaching toward your butt. Grab your right foot in your hand and gently stretch your foot as close to your butt as possible, feeling the pull on your quadriceps. The lying-down version uses the same movements, but instead of standing, you lie on your side. Lie on your left side with your left leg extended down and your left arm extended above you head on the ground. Bend your right knee and pull your right foot behind you toward your buttocks. Switch legs and repeat.lying quad stretch

Now your legs are warm up enough for your brisk walk either on ground or on treadmill.

Regards,

Hi Fitness Instructor

Why Pre-Workout Warm Up are Important

Why Pre-Workout Warm Up are Important

It happens to the best of us

We rush into a group-fitness class 10 minutes late and jump in at full speed. Or we launch into a quick run over our lunch hour, not wanting to waste a moment of precious time. Whenever we’re pressed, we tend to skip the warm-up, figuring that the main workout is what really counts. But nothing could be further from the truth.  Not only is warming up essential to preventing injury, she notes, but it makes you faster, fitter and stronger over time. In other words, the warm-up is not a prologue to fitness — it’s Part 1 of the main act.

Warming up will make your workout feel easier than if you were just hopping off the couch and going for it.

For maximum protection, it’s important to warm up before stretching. I know this sounds odd and you probably think I’m saying that you need to stretch before your workout, but also workout before you stretch. Let me clear this up. The warm-up should be non-strenuous movements that you can perform easily without any risk of trauma. The goal of the warm up is to actually warm up your muscles by circulating blood throughout your body with simple movements.

When your muscles are warmed up, they become like elastic and are flexible. Imagine your muscles as chewing gum. Initially out of the package, the gum is stiff and brittle and if you try to bend it, the gum will snap in half. If you want to blow a bubble, you will need to warm up your gum by chewing it. A good way to think of warm-ups and stretching is to think about it as a quick insurance policy for your workout. If you prepare properly and still become injured, odds are that you would have been hurt much more seriously if you had neglected to warm up and stretch before your workout.

A Proper Worm-Up:-   
  • Increases muscle core temperature, thus decreasing work required for muscle contraction and making movement feel easier.
  • Allows higher maximum cardiac output and oxygen consumption. (Translation: It increases your endurance and speed.)
  • Causes blood vessels to dilate, which aids the transportation of oxygen and nutrients to the working muscles (so you can run faster and jump higher).
  • Increases your range of motion by heating the synovial (lubricating) fluid in your joints,improving flexibility.
  • Warms you up mentally, increasing motivation and focus.

There is no hard evidence prescribing precisely how much warm-up is needed before a workout or a race. Most recommendations are in the 10- to 20-minute range, though some people need less or more time. “Depending on your fitness level and the particular movements you are performing, the warm-up may feel like a workout in itself,”

A rule of thumb: The higher your fitness level, the longer you probably need to warm up. (The fitter you are, the longer it takes to get your heart rate up and the more muscle mass you have to get warm.) At a bare minimum, though, for even the shortest workouts, you should allow for a five-minute warm-up.

Good warm-up exercises are easy to perform. Simple range of motion exercises is fine. Just focus on getting your blood flowing to your muscles. Swing your arms, walk in place while remembering to lift your knees high, and occasionally throw in a couple jumping jacks. Now, follow your warm-up with some simple stretches making sure to get all your joints nice and loose.

~ Our further session would consist on difference pre work out warmup exercises—don’t miss it ~

Regards,

Hi Fitness Insturctor

Female body shapes& body types- what are they?

Your body shape is based on the size of your physical features and their relation to each Body shapeother on your body, while your body type determines your body’s ability to gain fat and muscle. In addition, certain exercise types are more effective if you’re a particular body shape or body type.

Body Shapes

In most cases, you’ll fall into one of four female body shape categories, or you’ll be a combination of more than one:
The 5 main body shapeare;

  • Pear: A sexy bottom and a petite upper body
  • Apple: Beautifully bigger on your top half than your bottom
  • Ruler: Straight up and down
  • Hourglass: A well-proportioned top and bottom body with a narrow waist

Apple shape: These women have broad(er) shouldersapple compared to their (narrower) hips.Apple shaped women tend to have slim legs/thighs, while the abdomen and chest look out of proportion compared to the rest of the body. Fat is mainly distributed in the abdomen, chest, and face.

Ruler shape: the waist measurement is less than ruler9 inches smaller than the hips or bust measurement. Body fat is distributed predominantly in the abdomen, buttocks, chest, and face. This overall fat distribution creates the typical ruler (straight) shape.

Pear shape: The hip measurement is greater than the pearbust measurement. The distribution of fat varies, with fat tending to deposit first in the buttocks, hips, and thighs. As body fat percentage increases, an increasing proportion of body fat is distributed around the waist and upper abdomen. The women of this body type tend to have a (relatively) larger rear, robust thighs, and a small(er) bosom.

Hourglass shape: The hip and bust are almost of equalhourglass size with a narrow waist. Body fat distribution tends to be around both the upper body and lower body. This body type enlarges the arms, chest, hips, and rear before other parts, such as the waist and upper abdomen.

 BODY TYPES

The human physique can be divided into 3 main body types, based on propensity for fatbody type gain, muscle gain and frame size. While much is made of body shape, body type actually allows you to form a weight loss plan based on how your body responds to exercise and diet. In other words, it makes losing weight easier

  1. Ectomorph
  2. Endomorph
  3. Mesomorph

 

An Ectomorph has the body type that is most often seenectomorph in the pages of fashion magazines. They are slim boned, long limbed, lithe and have very little body fat and little muscle.

Ectomorphs tend to have fragile, delicately built bodies and find it difficult to gain weight or add muscle. Supermodels, ballerinas and basketball players most commonly fall into this group.

ECTOMORPH CHARACTERISTICS:
  • Skinny
  • Small joints/ boned
  • Long arms and legs
  • Linear physique – “ruler body shape”
  • Small shoulders
  • Lightly muscled
  • Small chest and buttocks
  • Low body fat (without exercising or following low calorie diets)
  • Can eat anything they like without weight gain
  • Fast and efficient metabolism
  • Difficulty gaining weight
  • Hyperactive
  • Difficulty in gaining muscle mass
ECTOMORPH PROBLEMS

Although ectomorphs tend to be highly regarded, one must remember that they have problems of their own. Ectomorphs tend to lack shape because of their low muscle mass. Female ectomorphs are likely to be flat chested and may complain of looking boyish, wishing they had more womanly curves. Male ectomorphs struggle to increase their muscle mass and may look wiry. As you see, they too, have to work hard to achieve their goals. As ectomorphs lack muscle mass, thus they need to keep their weight lower than endomorphs or mesomorphs. Furthermore, some ectomorph want and struggle to gain weight – muscle and some fat.

~Being a female ectomorph is currently in vogue. Ectomorphs, tend to lack both muscle and fat. However, it is not impossible to overcome your lack of muscle mass. It requires a serious focus on mass building through diet and weight training. The good news is that you have a naturally low body fat percentage. Thus, with even little gains in muscle you are able to boast excellent muscle definition. Female ectomorphs may want to gain mass to add shape.

Mesomorphs  could be thought of as the “genetically mesomorphgifted”. They are characterized by an athletic, strong, compact and naturally lean body. They have excellent posture. Often, their shoulders are wider than their hips and women tend to have an hourglass figure. Mesomorphs are natural born athletes and tend to be lean and muscular without trying. They generally are described as being of “medium” build. The world’s leading tennis players, figure skaters and bodybuilders fall into this group.

MESOMORPH CHARACTERISTICS
  • Naturally lean
  • Naturally muscular
  • Naturally strong
  • Medium size joints/ bones
  • Wider at the shoulders than the hips – i.e. chest dominates over abdominal area
  • Broad/ square shoulders
  • Female mesomorph: defined hourglass figure
  • Male mesomorph: V or rectangular shape
  • Efficient metabolism
  • Gaining muscle is almost effortless
  • Losing fat is almost effortless
  • Responds quickly to exercise
MESOMORPH ADVANTAGE

It is a great advantage to have mesomorphic qualities, as one has great foundations on which to build. Mesomorphs don’t have to worry too much about what they eat and they can gain muscle mass and lose weight fairly quickly with relatively easily. This combination allows the mesomorph to achieve fantastic definition of the body. However, as easily as you lose fat, you gain fat also. Janet Jackson is a good example of someone who has struggled with fluctuating weight, but when determined is able to lose weight relatively quickly and look incredibly defined and boast amazing abs.

~Female mesomorphs, that includes women who feel they have become too bulky, should do light-to-moderate weight training, no more than 3 times a week for muscle shaping and sculpting. This will help enhance tone and not increase size. Do 2 to 3 sets of 12 – 15 repetitions using light to moderate weights for each major muscle group. Try circuit training, which encourages strength and stamina, but without building bulk. Be careful when choosing thigh exercisesin a bid to slim down thighs.

Endomorphs have a soft, curvy and round physique endomorphand display the opposite characteristics from ectomorphs. They have a sluggish metabolism, gain weight easily and have to work hard to lose body fat. Endomorphs often have a larger frame and tend to have wider hips than shoulders, creating a pear-shaped physique. Some of the sexiest and most beautiful singers and actresses are endomorphs. Similarly, many of the actors and action heroes on the silver screen are endomorphs.

ENDOMORPH CHARACTERISTICS
  • Smooth, round body
  • Medium/ large joints/ bones
  • Small shoulders
  • Short limbs
  • High levels of body fat (may be overweight)
  • Body fat tends to settle in lower regions of body, mainly lower abdomen, butt, hips, and thighs (rather than being distributed evenly throughout body)
  • Pear-shaped physique
  • Can gain muscle easily, but tends to be underdeveloped
  • Difficult to keep lost body fat off
  • Lose weight slowly
  • Have to work hard to lose weight
  • Slow metabolic rate
  • Attacks of tiredness/ fatigue
  • Fall asleep easily
ENDOMORPH PROSPECTS

There is no way round this issue. Endomorphs will have a harder time losing weight. But lets be clear. No one is saying that endomorphs CAN’T lose weight, but that they will have to work harder to lose the weight. Endomorphs do not have to be overweight. They simply require more determination than perhaps a mesomorph would, to achieve the same goal. Endomorphs have to train hard and must eat healthily most of the time. Endomorphs gain fat quickly when eating the wrong types of foods because their metabolism can be unforgiving. 

The good news is that endomorph women are often thought of as voluptuous and sensual because they go in at the waist, have large rounded breasts and have womanly curves in all the right places. In shape the female endomorph is unrivaled – toned and fit whilst being soft, sensuous and alluring.

~Endomorphs have a higher body fat percentage. Thus, as an endomorph your primary focus should be on cardiovascular exercise and fat burning. Endomorphs should either start weight training immediately or wait until you have reached a weight with which you are more happy.

Regards,

Hi Fitness Instructor

BODY MASS INDEX (BMI)

BMI CalculatorThe BMI Calculator is an innovative health and weight calculator that gives personal results on 6 different weight and fitness measurements. Whether you’re just getting started or have already begun your journey, this calculator will help you understand your body’s needs as your body changes for optimal personal success!

Body Mass Index is used to estimate your total amount of fat. It is only an approximate measure of the best weight for your health.

This calculator is designed for men and women over the age of 18. 

A healthy BMI for an adult is between 20 and 25.

Some exceptions to the rule

BMI does not differentiate between body fat and muscle mass. This means there are some exceptions to the BMI guidelines.

 Differences in BMI between people of the same age and sex are usually due to body fat. However, there are exceptions to this rule, which means a BMI figure may not be accurate.


BMI calculations will overestimate the amount of body fat for:

Body builders

Some high performance athletes

Pregnant women.

BMI calculations will underestimate the amount of body fat for:

The elderly

People with a physical disability who are unable to walk and may have muscle wasting.

BMI is also not an accurate indicator for people with eating disorders like anorexia nervosa or people with extreme obesity. 

To calculate your BMI, you can use the BMI calculator provided in side bar. You need to know:
  • Your weight in lbs or Kgs
  • Your height in feet.

Once you have measured your BMI, you can determine your healthy weight range. If your BMI is:

  • Under 18.5 – you are very underweight and possibly malnourished.
  • 18.5 to 24.9 – you have a healthy weight range for young and middle-aged adults.
  • 25.0 to 29.9 – you are overweight
  • Over 30 – you are obeseVisual BMI chart

Risks of being overweight and physically inactive

If you are overweight (BMI over 25) and physically inactive, you may develop:

Cardiovascular (heart and blood circulation) disease

Gall bladder disease

High blood pressure (hypertension)

Diabetes

Osteoarthritis

Certain types of cancer, such as colon and breast cancer.

Risks of being underweight

If you are underweight (BMI less than 18.5), you may be malnourished and develop:

Compromised immune function

Respiratory disease

Digestive disease

Cancer

Osteoporosis

Increased risk of falls and fractures.

Regards,

Hi Fitness Instructor

ARE YOU FIT?

 Are You Fit

Physical fitness refers to one’s overall measure of physical, bodily health; it is typically made up of things such as cardiovascular endurance and body composition, as well as overall muscular strength and stamina.

Just because you are active doesn’t mean you’re fit.  People who appearskinny  aren’t necessarily healthy either. Physical fitness is the ability to function effectively throughout your workday, perform your usual other activities and still have enough energy left over to handle any extra stresses or emergencies which may arise.

Overall physical fitness is said to consist of five different elements:physical fitness

1.  Cardiorespiratory (CR) endurance – the efficiency with which the body delivers oxygen and nutrients needed for muscular activity and transports waste products from the cells.

2.  Muscular strength – the greatest amount of force a muscle or muscle group can exert in a single effort.

3.  Muscular endurance – the ability of a muscle or muscle group to perform repeated movements with a sub-maximal force for extended periods of times.

4.  Flexibility – the ability to move the joints or any group of joints through an entire, normal range of motion.

5.  Body composition – the percentage of body fat a person has in comparison to his or her total body mass.

This is the reason why diet & exercise is so important. It helps improve or maintain all the components of physical and motor fitness through sound, progressive, mission specific physical training.

The Deal with Exercise

You have to adhere to the basic exercise principles in order to develop an effective program. The same principles of exercise apply to everybody–elite athletes to the weekend jogger.

Here are the basics when setting up your fitness program:

Regularity

Working out once a week isn’t going to cut it folks. Exercising often in several of the fitness components each week is best. For example, cardio 3-5 days, strength training 2-3 days and round it out with some stretching 1-2 days per week (yoga, etc). Regularity is also important in resting, sleeping, and following a sensible diet.

Progression

The intensity (how hard) and/or duration (how long) of exercise must gradually increase to improve the level of fitness. For example, if you have maxed out a particular rep range for a specific amount of weight–pick up heavier weights. If you have been jogging on the treadmill for 20 minutes for the last few weeks, add some more time to each session.

Balance

To be effective, a program should include activities that address all the fitness components, since overemphasizing any one of them may hurt the others.

Variety

Mix things up. Providing a variety of activities reduces boredom and increases motivation and results. For example, use different machines or switch out to free weights.

Specificity

Training must be geared toward specific goals. For example, people become better runners if their training emphasizes running. Although swimming is great exercise, it does not improve a 2-mile-run time as much as a running program does.

Recovery

A hard day of training for a given component of fitness should be followed by an easier training day or rest day for that component and/or muscle group(s) to help permit recovery. Another way to allow recovery is to alternate the muscle groups exercised every other day, especially when training for strength and/or muscle endurance.

Overload

Stop making things too easy. The work load of each exercise session must exceed the normal demands placed on the body in order to bring about a training effect.fitness

Regards,

Hi Fitness Instructor