Tag Archives: strength

Say YES to Weight Training

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Most women I know shun away from weight training. Here’s why-

Me- Hey girl, why don’t you weight train?
Girl – Umm yeah. I know it’s good and all, but you know I do not wanna look like this-
woman body builder

Me- Umm…no you wont, unless you competing for a heavy weight championship, and pumping in loads of supplements and steroids and testosterone in your blood. This is how you might look if you do weight training-

strong is the new skinny

Every women wants a ripped and defined body, but no one quite knows what to do, and what really works. And when they do know, they prefer sticking to the known and boring routine. Weight training is the answer if you are looking to get leaner. As we age, our muscle mass tends to decrease, and fat increases. That is why it is imperative to do weight training to maintain the muscle mass.

Here are the advantages of doing so-

  • Improves coordination of muscles
  • Helps to regress obesity and resolve metabolic disorders
  • Increase strength and endurance in one’s body
  • Weight training causes muscles to grow and pull increased amount of glucose from the bloodstream, cause lower blood sugar levels and decreased chances of diabetes.
  • Weight training helps to melt away visceral fat that builds around organs in the body, decreasing cardiovascular diseases.
  • Weight training reduces greatly the chances of joint pains, and keeps the bones healthy for the long haul.

 

AND THE BIGGEST BENEFIT OF ALL

  • The more muscles you build, the more calories you will burn! MORE BANG FOR YOUR BUCK!

I need not say anything anymore 🙂 GO get your workout in, and make sure to incorporate weights!

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Exercise of the Day!

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leg raises

I quite recently started doing leg raises. I know, it’s sad that I did not before, because I always found them to be too hard. But ever since I decided to push past my hesitation, I have seen definition, I had never seen before!
Wanna target your rigid lower abs?
Wanna tone your biceps and triceps at the same time?
Wanna strengthen your back muscles and glutes?

Do leg raises!

In my opinion, this is truly the MOTHER of all ab exercises (ofcourse after planks 🙂 ). All you need is one of these.
pull-up bar
It targets all the ab muscles at once, give you a more complete ab workout, versus doing a million of different ones. Do 10 reps of these, 3 times, every couple days, and see the difference.

Push your boundaries today and try a new exercises, maybe the one you think you can never do 🙂

Happy Friday!

Maintaining Weight Without Workout

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super food, food groups

Sounds weird right? How can one possibly stay in great shape or even maintain without a daily dose of exercise? I used to think the same until the time I couldn’t workout anymore. For two weeks I suffered a back injury which made me incapable of doing any exercise whatsoever. It was hard enough to sit and the only time I felt good was when I would lie down. I had been showing symptoms of sciatica.

Knowing the fitness freak that I am, it was not a surprise to find me worrying about – “How am I going to workout now? How will I maintain myself? What will I do if I gained weight?”. All the negative thoughts began consuming me until I decided to look at my situation differently. I told myself, “Pallavi, you have been working out way too much and your body is asking for some break. You could use this time to focus on other aspects of fitness and staying healthy – diet.”. And I immediately started researching, more than ever, about foods I could eat to give me energy, but at the same time help me keep the pounds off. I went on some serious grocery shopping and revamped my refridgerator. Here are my 8 super foods I heavily integrated into my diet:

Read the rest of this entry

What is Stopping You?

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4 types of resilience,jane mcgongil

Every morning I wake up and ask myself just one question: “What is stopping me from being the best I can?”. Is it procrastination? Lack of motivation and drive? Is it plane and simple lethargy? or is it some weird concoction of all of those things? Some days my answer is nothing? And other days it is just lack of will to do anything at all. Well we all of those days, and we know how negatively it can impact our productivity. And I have for a long time been thinking of ways to get myself to wake up each day with a surge of energy that I need to get me on the fast lane. Here are few simple tricks I use to get me going:

1). Eat light before going to bed: Eating too much or right before going to bed will give you the feeling of heaviness and lethargy. Hence its important to keep the dinner super light.

2). Early to Bed Early to Rise: Waking up with stingy eyes and a slight headache means that you might not have gotten the amount of sleep your body needed. Make sure you get about 7 to 8 hours of sleep so you are well prepared for another energetic day.

3). Wake up listening to motivational music or talk – Listening to motivational music or talk really works for me. One of my favorite songs that really gets out the energizer bunny in me is “Remember The Name” by Fort Minor. I often listen to Deepak Chopra whose talks are quite inspirational and touches the spiritual side in me the days I am emotionally low.

4). Drink water as soon as you wake up – Drinking a big glass of water flushes out the toxins in my body, gets my metabolism going and hydrates me thoroughly.

5). Tell yourself “you are the best!” – As crazy as it sounds, this trick never fails! While I am busy doing my morning rituals, like brushing my teeth, I make sure I do not forget to look in the mirror and talk to myself. Telling yourself that you are the best and your day is going to be great, and actually believing in your words, has a major psychological effect to your brain which helps you get excited about your day ahead and helps you get through the day successfully.

I am quite sure alot of you are already doing these things. I would love to know what you do to get yourself going at the break of dawn!

Have a great weekend everybody!

Secret To Living Longer

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4 types of resilience,jane mcgongil

Spring break has officially begun! What it means for me? A week off from school! What it means for you? More posts from me to read! I am extremely excited about having sometime out from focusing on school work and spend that time in writing for all of my wonderful readers. Just the other morning as I was getting ready for work, I happened to stumble upon a TED talk and had it playing in the background as I was getting ready. And I must say, it had a huge impact on my day!

Jane McGongil is a game designer by profession and in this video she starts talking about the top 5 regrets of a dying person, and how playing a game can help a person achieve those things while they are still alive. She does an extremely great job in banishing the common myth around playing games – it is a waist of time and it kills brain cells. She scientifically proves that games can in turn have a highly positive impact on people and help them feel better, more confident and fulfilled with their lives. She then goes on to talk about “post-traumatic growth” and how playing certain kind of games help in improving and bringing about life changes after a traumatic incident.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5t3y7EeBhxg

But what I want you guys know the most in this post are the 4 types of resilience – physical, mental, emotional and social.

1. Physical resilience – Physical activity increases our body’s ability to handle stress and heal itself. Eg. adoptive an active lifestyle.

2. Mental resilience – Activities such as creative flow, reading or any kind of concentration increases discipline, determination and the ability to focus.

3. Emotional resilience – Provoking positive emotions such as curiosity, and love increases our overall wellbeing, health and longevity. Eg. hugging your pet, spending time with your loved ones, etc.

4. Social resilience – When we practice positive social engagement especially when touch and gratitude are involved, we get a hit of the bonding chemical Oxytocin. Eg. say thank you to a friend for his/her help, be grateful about your life and all the positive things you are surrounded by.

Now you must wonder what has this to do wit fitness? Well it has everything to do with fitness. Exercises and a good clean diet will only help if you are fit and happy from within. Having a low drive and determination along with low self-esteem or confidence, will not help you develop the will power which is needed to have a fit life. Hence it is as important to be fit from within. So for the next few days, make it a point to do these 5 things with me:

1). Take time out to spend an hour relaxing with your loved one. Eg. your kids, your husband, your friends, family, or even your pet.

2). Genuinely thank people for their help and do a little something to make their day.

3). Spend a few minutes infront of the mirror and tell yourself – “I am the best and I will strive to be better!

4). Smile alot!

5). Play some angry birds for a few minutes everyday 😉

Have a great week all!

Stretch And Flex : Coffee Stretches

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By Pallavi Sharma

I am here to reveal the greatest secret to attaining healthy muscles, but first things first! Try doing this little exercise with me. Regardless of where you are, be it sitting on a chair, in your bed, on your couch or even at your desk at work,  raise your hands to the ceiling and try to straighten out your legs for a brief time. Now push your hands towards the ceiling and your legs towards the ground as if someone were to pull you with a lot of strength from both ends like a rope in a tug-of-war. Hold this posture for 10 seconds and release. How do you feel? Do you feel like it was a much needed stretch for your tight muscles? Do you feel a stream of new energy flowing through your body as the blood begins to circulate? And most of all, do you feel good? 🙂 I am pretty sure the answer to all of the questions above is a very big YES!

Stretching has always been quite underrated, but it is truly quite important for a healthy body. It not only improves flexibility in the muscles and the joints and increases the range of motion, but it also reduces the chances of injury while playing a sport, reduces tension in tight spots in the body and increases blood flow in different parts which cures injuries by providing them nutrient supply.

This is where our dear friend Yoga comes into play, which has proven to be the best form of stretching exercise for centuries now. So what is the first thing you do when you wake up early in the morning, when your body is well rested but lacks the agility which you would require to kick-start your day? The following  video has some highly effective early morning yoga postures which will bring about that much needed alertness in your body as you wake up. I call these COFFEE STRETCHES! (because just like coffee, it has similar “waking up” effect on your body, but comes with health benefits intact! :))

Gas For A Long Drive

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By Pallavi Sharma

Nourishment

On Friday morning, as I was doing my rituals i.e. working the treadmill and the elliptical, I saw a middle aged man walking towards me in a black attire. Turns out, he is one of the Certified Personal Trainers who try to lure the LifeTime Fitness clients into getting a Fitness Assessment Test. Considering my invisible cloak of conceit that I constantly wear, I have never cared enough for one of those tests. So I gladly greeted the gentleman with a sweet smile and shook hands with him. He had been watching me sweating it out for the last one hour and ended up asking if I had filled myself with enough nourishment for a crazy sweat like that. Hmmm, it had never occurred to me that its highly recommended to get a little bit of food inside that belly of ours before a workout, to avoid light-headedness and a growling noise! Now, by “food” I obviously don’t mean an old country buffet or a three course meal right before a workout! What I mean is a little bit of energy snack like an energy bar or a protien shake which will help in providing you more energy for your workouts and get the most out of them. Let me elaborate.

Our body’s main source of energy is the carbohydrates stored in the form of glycogen in the liver and the muscles. So when your glycogen content is depleted, your body will definitely try to burn the stored fat in you body (which you have been desperately trying to get rid of), but it will cause fatigue and you may not have enough energy to keep your stamina up and going. So on the other hand if you were to say eat a hearty meal several hours before a workout or even a little snack few minutes before, the carbohydrate that you would have consumed would get into the bloodstream in the form of glucose which is another readily available source of energy for the body which gives you the extra oomph for your workout. That way you have two sources of energy (the glucose in the bloodstream and the glycogen in the muscles and liver) which causes you to last longer and stay stronger during your workouts.

Now you must be wondering: What to eat before and after a workout?
Here’s a great article I came across which talks about fluid intakes and the kind of food products to eat before a workout. Check it out!

http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/nutrition_articles.asp?id=1074

Starving yourself and thinking that the body would burn stored fat will have the reverse effect on your body. So if you want to enjoy and love your workout sessions, well nourish your body and see yourself turn into a live energizer bunny! YOU ARE WORTH IT!!!