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Exercise And Asthma

(category: Exercise, Word count: 484)
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If you suffer from asthma, you probably think that you

can't exercise properly or safely. Contrary to what

many think of this subject, there are ways that you

can get in shape and exercise, even if you suffer

from asthma.

Asthma is a chronic lung disease that is marked by

characteristics such as coughing, wheezing, shortness

of breath, and chest tightness. Asthma tends to occur

with people who are genetically or environmentally

presdisposed to the condition.

Some of the triggers that may start or make an attack

worse include exposure to allergens, viral respiratory

infections, airway irritants, exercise, and exposure

to things such as dust mites or cockroaches.

You can prevent asthma attacks by doing the following:

1. Bathe your pets weekly.

2. Don't smoke or permit smoking in your

home.

3. When mold or pollent counts are high,

you should stay inside with air conditioning.

4. Wash your bedding and any stuffed toys

at least once per week in hot water.

5. Wash your hands every chance you get.

6. Get a flu shot.

7. Wear a scarf over your mouth and nose in

the winter months.

8. Be proactive and know your triggers and

how you should avoid them.

Now that you know what you know about asthma, you

may be wondering where exercise fits in. As most

doctors will tell you, you shouldn't give up on

sports or exercise at all. You just have to be

smart about how you play and take special pre

cautions to avoid attacks.

Almost all doctors agree that the best way to

prevent attacks during exercise is to keep your

inhaler and medication close by. You should never

use the inhaler more than 3 times during a game

or exercise session. If you are up the previous

night with coughing and wheezing, it's always best

to go light with your exercise the next day.

For something known as IEA (Exercise Induced Asthma),

the symptoms are somewhat different, in the fact

that they appear after 6 - 10 minutes of exercise

and will often be worse in cold or dry air.

If you have IEA, there are several activities that

you can enjoy such as swimming, walking, biking,

downhill skiing, and team based sports. There are

many activities for you to choose from, to ensure

you get the exercise you need as well.

Keep in mind that the condition of asthma isn't

"all in your head", it is a real physiological

medical treatment that will require treatment to

prevent and treat. Even though your doctor will

be your best friend in treating asthma, you are

the one who can prevent your symptoms.

Always be smart, take your medication, and be

proactive. Don't let it put you in a life of

misery - as you can enjoy exercise just like

everyone else.

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It S Not Just About Getting A Six Pack

(category: Exercise, Word count: 316)
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When people think about ab exercise, they tend to think about getting a six-pack, flattening their stomach and generally looking better. Your abs, however, aren't just there for looking good - there are far more reasons to exercise them than that!

Your abs - that is, your abdominal muscles - are some of the most important muscles in your body. They protect your stomach, liver, kidneys, spleen, colon, and much more besides. In fact, your abs has some role in almost every movement you make, meaning that they are some of the most important muscles you possess.

One of the best reasons to do abs exercise is that it not only helps to prevent abdominal pain, but also helps with back pain as well, as strong abs allow you to sit up straight easily and prevent back strain. A little effort now can save you a lot of pain (and money) later on down the line. Even if your back has already gone, ab exercise can help to relieve some of the pain by taking some of the weight off your back.

Your abs don't just help to support your back - they support your spine, your arms and your legs, too. Although it might seem strange, having strong abs can make it much less tiring to walk long distances, as you are less likely to feel a 'stitch' in your side. Strong abs also keeps you more balanced, as they are situated at the body's centre of gravity.

As your abs are a protective muscle, having strong abs makes you less likely to injure yourself when you fall - when it comes to your vital organs, it could actually make the difference between life and death. This is very important if you are an athlete or play other sports where you might be prone to injury.

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Calf Cramps 5 Ways To Avoid The Pain

(category: Exercise, Word count: 852)
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If you are a runner, then I am sure that you will know about calf cramps.

Imagine this scenario if you will. Let's say that you are 7.5k into a 10k run and the road starts to incline. Ever so slightly, but enough to put that extra strain on your legs as you try to maintain contact with the leaders. And the temperature? Well, it's the morning, but it's hot and liable to get hotter before the end. And to make matters worse, you were so desperate to maintain contact with the leading group, that you forgot to take on liquid at the last feeding station. And did you use tight fitting calf length socks? I know they are all the rage, but why did you do it?

So what do we have here?

* Extra strain on muscles?

* Dehydration?

* Loss of essentials salts?

* Restriction of blood flow?

All in all, I think that we are describing running calf cramps, waiting to happen.

I am not sure that anyone has definitive answer to the cause of cramps, but there are certainly several steps that you can take which could help save you from disaster during competition, in any sport.

1. A Proper Warm Up

Ok, I know you know, but did you do it? If not, then those cramps could be coming. Seriously, if you have been involved in any sport to any level, then you will be aware of the importance of a proper warm up. And I don't just mean a brisk walk up the stairs to the changing room either! A proper warm up should include a routine that gently stretches your muscles to get them ready for the increased exertion, and gets your blood flowing around your body. Not only will a warm help prevent calf cramps, they will also help prevent some of the injuries that might occur when you put sudden strain on cold muscles.

And whilst we are talking of warm ups, don't forget warm downs as well. Warming down after exercise can also help prevent cramping and reduce the risk of injury.

2. Train Hard, Run Easy

Have you heard this before? No? Well you should give it some thought, because it's true. When you train for a sport, not only do you practice the necessary skills required to execute which ever event you are competing in, but you are also training your body for the rigours of the event. To given an exaggerated example, if you train for a sprint, and then try and run a marathon, your body won't be ready. If you try it, I think you could be in for some serious cramps.

Remember, train hard, run easy.

3. Water is Sport's Life Blood

Whenever you start to exercise, you start to sweat (or you should). Sweat is nature's way of cooling you down when you get hot, so, it's a good thing. And since your body is mainly made of water, then you should have plenty, shouldn't you? Well, considering that you lose moisture from your body when you breathe, sweating does take a lot of fluid out of your system.

And your body will demand that it be replaced!

If you start feeling dizzy, or experience a rapid heart beat, then these could be signs that you are starting to dehydrate. I will take it as read that if your mouth and lips feel dry, then you should be taking water on board. It is not always possible to take on fluid during sport, but always have some available as soon as you are able to drink.

4. Sport A'int No Catwalk.

It's true! Sport is not a fashion parade. If you think it is, then you are hanging out in the wrong place! There's nothing wrong with looking cool whilst you compete, but be practical. Don't risk injury (or cramps) by wearing clothing that is too tight, and that restricts your body's movement, either externally or via blood flow. Believe me, I know. When I was younger, I used tie up's on my socks whilst playing soccer (not as a fashion statement you'll understand), just to keep my socks up and my shin guards inside my socks. Three quarters of the way through a game, my calves would tighten up, and I would roll on the floor in agony. Once it was understood, that I 'only had cramp', I was the object of much derision, but believe me, cramp is far from funny if you are the one suffering.

Wear appropriate clothing.

5. Eat Properly.

When you are sweating and working hard, not only do you lose water, you also lose nutrients. There is speculation that that athletes who get calf cramps could suffer from low levels of potassium, sodium, calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus. I am not suggesting that you do low level analysis of your breakfast cereal, but the message is clear. Look after your body, and your body will look after you.

Eat sensibly, and eat the right foods.

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Back Exercise Stretches For Back Pain

(category: Exercise, Word count: 353)
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Back exercise stretches the lower back muscles to help bring relief to back pain caused by over-stressed back muscles. Spine rehabilitation too is done through back exercise. People suffering from back pain are put through an exercise regimen, as exercise stretches the back and promotes better blood circulation in the area.

You will hear many people complain of back pain occasionally. About 75% to 85% of the people experience back pain at some point of time in their life. The most common area of back pain is the lumbar region of the spine. This is the region that bears most of the body weight. Sudden twisting and bending can cause injury to the back. Back pain also occurs when the muscles get stiff because of poor posture. Back exercise stretches the stiff muscles to provide relief.

Back Exercise Stretches - For Back Pain Relief

Back exercise stretches need to be performed softly. You should treat your back gently and not subject it jerky and violent movement. The exercise routine that you follow should start gently, and gradually build over a period of a few weeks. You could cause more harm than good, if you do not follow expert advice in matters of back exercise.

Warm up your body before you embark on the stretching routine. Exercise stretches the muscles, ligaments and tendons in the area surrounding the back. The muscles and tendons associated with the spine are designed for movement. Hence, they need to be stretched everyday to perform optimally. The hamstring muscles are an important factor in back pain problems. Most people with back pain have stiff hamstring muscles.

Stand comfortably with your feet shoulder width apart. Now slowly bend forward and try to touch your toes with your hands without bending your knees. Your action should be smooth and not jerky. Be careful not to overdo the stretching part. Stop when you feel pain. This exercise stretches your hamstring muscles. Your back pain will improve gradually, as you continue with the exercise. The exercise can also be performed while lying down.

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Some Tips To Help Shorten Your Daily Workout

(category: Exercise, Word count: 247)
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Does it seem from time to time that when you go to the gym and do your workout routine, it just takes too long? Maybe you've been noticing that you seem to be spending 20 to 30 minutes longer than you would like to. Well, what you need are some little things you can do that will not only shorten your time in the gym, but will still give you a good workout.

For openers, you can split body parts. Working the legs and arms one day, then working the chest and back one day, then working the shoulders and abdominals the next day is a good, effective way to shorten your exercise time and still give each muscle group a good, solid workout.

Another thing you can do is keep it down to one set. It is usually not recommended to do only one set during exercise despite claims made by other experts that one set can be as beneficial as 2 to 4 sets. But one set, as long as it is one good set, is better than doing nothing at all if time is the issue.

You can also do a circuit style workout with your weight training. All you do here is complete one set of one exercise, then move right along to the next exercise non stop until you've finished each exercise in your routine. Once done, you take a 1 to 1

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25 Ways Get 10 Mins Of Fitness Exercise Pt 1

(category: Exercise, Word count: 453)
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Experts recommend working out 45 minutes to an hour a day (30 minutes for beginners) for weight loss and fitness. But if you're like most women, you don't always have a block of 30 to 60 minutes a day to devote exclusively to doing your workouts.

You can still exercise-you just need to sneak in the equivalent in resourceful ways. "The idea is to keep moving," says fitness expert Ann Grandjean, EdD. "Get a cordless phone or put a long cord on your regular phone, and walk when you talk. Find whatever works for you and just move. Park half a mile from the mall and walk. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Those little, itty-bitty things add up."

Every Stolen Moment Adds Up

Lest you think that short bursts of activity have a negligible effect on your fitness program, think again. One study found that women who split their exercise into 10-minute increments were more likely to exercise consistently, and lost more weight after 5 months, than women who exercised for 20 to 40 minutes at a time.

In a landmark study conducted at the University of Virginia, exercise physiologist Glenn Gaesser, PhD, asked men and women to complete 15 10-minute exercise routines a week. After just 21 days, the volunteers' aerobic fitness was equal to that of people 10 to 15 years younger. Their strength, muscular endurance, and flexibility were equal to those of people up to 20 years their junior.

In yet another study, researchers at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore found that for improving health and fitness in inactive adults, many short bursts of activity are as effective as longer, structured workouts. "It would be useful for people to get out of the all-or-nothing mind-set that unless they exercise for 30 minutes, they're wasting their time," says Gaesser.

Breaking exercise into small chunks on your overscheduled days can also keep your confidence up, says Harold Taylor, time management expert and owner of Harold Taylor Time Consultants in Toronto, who has written extensively on the subject. "Skipping exercise altogether is 'de-motivational'-you feel depressed and guilty," Taylor says. "If you skip it, you tend to figure, 'What's the use? I can't keep up with it anyway.' Yet as long as you make some effort each day, that motivates you onward. Success breeds success."

Keep in mind, though, that short bursts of exercise are meant to supplement, not replace, your regular fitness routine. Here's a roundup of practical ways to work exercise into your day even when you "don't have time to exercise." (You don't have to do them all in 1 day; select what works for you.)

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Why Should I Exercise

(category: Exercise, Word count: 78)
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For some, exercise is a passion. For others, it seems to be a four-lettered word, or in this case an eight-letter word. But, it doesn't have to be a dreaded event. Exercise can be fun. It can mean more than running for hours on the treadmill or climbing the stair master until your legs feel like Jell-O. You can get in shape by doing things that you love to do. Take sports for example

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Fitness Aerobic Training

(category: Exercise, Word count: 558)
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Fitness in general includes both aerobic and anaerobic aspects. According to the priorities of the sportsman, one or the other of the two aspects will be emphasized, but the second one will not be neglected. The purpose of doing fitness exercises is, ideally, to create a complete athlete, able to face various physical and psychological demands.

The object of aerobic fitness is the so-called cardio training, a term which refers to the cardio-vascular system and the heart muscle (myocardium). We'll talk about trainings which do not make oxygen duty and which are generally called 'trainings of aerobic effort'. More exactly, they refer to efforts which take a long time (more than 12 minutes) - usually they take between 20 and 60 minutes and they determine acceleration of cardiac frequency and lung ventilation. Efficiency in training requires a frequency between 60-80% of the maximum cardiac frequency (calculated according to the formula 720-age - in years).

The typical exercises of aerobic fitness come from classic resistance sports (long distance running, cycling, swimming, fast walking, etc.) and from different aerobic training programs (aerobic gymnastics, step-aerobic, tae-bo, dance, etc.).

Aerobic fitness uses specific cardio machines: treadmill, classic or elliptical trainer, stepper,etc. Dosing the aerobic effort depends on the somatic type and the actual objectives of each sportsman.

Normally, the ectomorphic and mezomorphic types, which do not accumulate large quantities of subcutaneous adipose tissue, will need to practice for a rather short time (20-30 minutes per training in two or three trainings a week, in non-consecutive days). This time is necessary for realizing an effective cardiac stimulation, without the risk of losing muscular mass.

For the endomorphic somatic type, 'benefiting' of a lot of adipose tissue, aerobic training must last 45-60 minutes and needs to take place 4-6 times a week.

Even if trainings are extended (time, miles) and they are more frequent, their intensity, which is given by the cardiac rhythm per training, must remain high, so finally the body burns as many calories as possible. It is well-known that only after 20-30 minutes the body starts to mobilize the fat 'deposits'. Before this, at the beginning of the training, the energetic support of the aerobic effort is ensured by the muscular and hepatic glycogen, the same as in anaerobic efforts, which are supported exclusively by the glycogen from the muscles and the liver.

This is one of the main reasons for recommending, in programs designed for losing weight, aerobic exercises - they are the biggest and fastest 'fat burners'. Of course, the other big benefits of these exercises appear at the cardiovascular, pulmonary, psychological and other levels.

A real euphoria is observed at the psychological level during aerobic training. This is motivated by the big number of endorphins produced in the body by this type of effort. Endorphins, also called hormones of happiness, are not produced in such a big quantity during anaerobic effort. Anaerobic training determines a big release of catecholamine (adrenaline, noradrenalin), which are considered stress hormones.

A disadvantage of aerobic fitness is, first of all, non-developing a strong and fortified musculature, because of the reduced muscle efforts. We can also observe (and must resist) the monotony of the training, which is long and repetitive.

However, generally speaking, the advantages of aerobic fitness are remarkable and irreplaceable.

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Fitness For Older Women 10 Years Younger With Strength Training

(category: Exercise, Word count: 899)
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Strength training has a lot of advantages for women, and particularly for women aged 35 to 40 and older. By the age of 40, women generally begin to lose bone density and muscle mass. One study at Tufts University, designed by the author of 'Strong Women Stay Young', Miriam Nelson PH.D, found that instead of losing bone density and muscle mass, the women were 15 to 20 years younger after one year of weight training. They gained bone density, and their strength tests matched women who were in their 30's and 40's.

These women didn't diet, but they did end up looking slimmer. Some lost 1 or 2 dress sizes, and they all replaced fat with muscle. Because muscle weighs more than fat, this is the reason they looked slimmer, though the scales may not have changed much.

The women in this study were all post menopausal, and some of their ages were in the 50's and 60's. They made some remarkable changes in their lives as they got stronger. One woman described going rollerblading with her children. Another went canoeing with her husband. More than any pills or potions, strength training gave these women back a youthfulness some didn't even have to that degree in the first place.

The women in this study used leg weights and free hand weights that were adjustible in their strength training program. They started at a level they were able to - even if this was the lightest weights available. They didn't buy lots of expensive equipment or home gyms, and many of these can be bought second hand with a little research locally. As they developed their strength, they invested in heavier weights.

For the strap on ankle weights, they started with 1 to 3 kilograms in each cuff. The suggested ankle cuffs hold up to 10 kilograms each. The dumbells they used for their arms were adjustable, and they started with 1 or 2 kilograms. The only other equipment they needed was a chair, somewhere to store the weights, and a towel. Because you're working out in your own home you don't need to buy expensive or flashy gym clothes, or worry about feeling the odd one out.

The workout itself is in the book, Stong Women Stay Young. It covers a range of basic exercises that don't take up too much time, which is suggested you do twice a week. Each session takes about 40 minutes including warming up and cooling down.

Tips for women working out with weights at home

* Make sure the area you're working in doesn't have rugs, electrical cords, toys and other items that you can trip over

* Keep your pets and young children away from this area whilst you're working out

* If you're using a chair when you do exercises, make sure it's on a carpet that won't slide around. If you don't have carpet, put the chair against the wall so it stays stable

* If you have problems with your back, you'll need to be careful when you're carrying your free weights around. Take a few trips to carry things if you have to move them in or out of a storage area. And make sure you lift them properly by bending your knees and moving slowly.

* It helps to keep the weights you're not currently using in their container. That way they can't be knocked off by curious children.

* If you're using leg weights, don't walk around with them on. It could affect your balance. And if you trip on something, you are more likely to injure yourself than normal

* Keep the telephone off the hook, and the cellphone off. That way if someone rings you won't be interrupted

* Make sure you have some drinking water nearby in case you get thirsty.

* Don't drink any alcohol, even a little bit, less than a couple of hours before you exercise

* Try and make sure you haven't just eaten a meal before you work out. But by the same token, make sure you're not starving! If you're really hungry, you could become light headed or dizzy when you work out.

* Don't forget to warm up!

* If you're using weights, try doing them in front of a mirror so you can check your posture. You'll get more out of the exercise, and work the right muscles. Sometimes our posture becomes so habitual we don't realize it's not quite right until we see it

* If you're using weights, a good posture means you're chin is down slightly, so that it's aligned with your neck. Your neck is in line with your spine, shoulders are straight and not stiff, back is straight, and your knees are not locked or bent. Your pelvis should be tucked under a little

* When using weights, do the lifts slowly. This really works the muscles instead of letting the motion do the work for you.

* Make sure you pause for a count between lifting the weight up, and lowering it

* Don't hold your breath whilst you're lifting wights. Given that we're contracting muscles, sometimes we unconsciously hold our breaths at the same time. Remember to breath, but don't go the other extreme and hyperventilate!

References: Miriam Nelson and Sarah Wernick, Strong Women Stay Young (Lothian)

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