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Entries in Exercise (19)

Monday
Mar252013

Stress vs. Strain

Our bodies are built for certain physical “stresses.” They evolved to handle to them, expect them, and thrive with them. In fact, when we don’t offer our bodies reasonable exertion within these natural stresses, our systems suffer to some degree. We, in effect, downgrade our own physical robustness. Good physical stress is the day to day (hopefully) movement that supports our bone, muscle, organ, hormone, and immune function. Strain, however, results when we push our bodies beyond reasonable exertion (for our present physical condition) or when we engage in exercise without adhering to proper form and periodization. The key to maximizing our fitness gains is to optimize our good physical stress without imposing unproductive strain on our bodies. 

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Monday
Mar112013

The Myth of the Best Workout

You hear the claims all the time: “It’s the best fitness class out there!” or “You’ll never find another workout better than this!” or (my personal favorite) “This is the last fitness routine you’ll ever need!” Behind these claims, of course, is the assumption that a single program can meet all your exercise requirements. How realistic is this concept? When we consider the broad spectrum of our physical capabilities and the need to develop each for good overall fitness, what is the chance that a single approach, let alone practice, will be enough to achieve that potential? Let’s explore the question.

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Monday
Dec172012

10,000 steps a day…let the Fitbit be your guide!

Every day we have the opportunity to move our bodies purposefully, with the intent to exercise. Often it is thought that the ideal is to exercise at least 5 days each week for no less than 30 minutes, but this doesn’t always happen as planned. Our lives are hectic and crazy, with unplanned ups and downs that pull us out of our planned routine and away from our workouts on what seems like a regular basis. With this in mind, it’s important to always have a backup plan to keep yourself as active as possible. I often find myself encouraging the people I meet to simply look for ways to move more. For years I have been encouraging people to wear a pedometer and track their steps each and every day. Fortunately I’m not the only one who feels that moving more each day is beneficial.

The idea of using a pedometer is not a new one. The “10,000 steps per day” slogan has been around for decades and continues to be tossed around as a measure to improve physical activity among adults. The theory of 10,000 steps per day began as a goal for Japanese citizens in the 1960’s and has morphed into an ideal goal for movement each day around the world.1

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Monday
Oct082012

Can too much cardio slow fat loss?


Exercise is often recommended as a way to increase the rate of fat loss in a weight management program. Strength training is important for maintaining the lean mass, or muscle tissue that’s often lost by those who use only diet to lose weight. Endurance training, or cardiovascular training, is often encouraged as a way to increase the amount of fat energy used during the day, train the body to burn fat more efficiently, and help to increase the rate of fat loss.

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Sunday
Jan022011

Ready to Start Your New Year's Resolution? Don't Fall Victim to These Bad Habits

As the new year begins, millions of people are ready to start new diets and exercise programs—with expectations and approaches that may not be reasonable. As a result, many don’t achieve the kind of health and fitness they hope for. New goals need appropriate planning and an eye on the pitfalls that throw programs off track. The following is a list of “don’ts” and “do’s” to help keep your resolutions real and attainable.

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