by Brian Dalek February 10, 2012, 10:00 am EST
Thomas Dold has mastered the stairwell of the Empire State Building. See how you can get on his tail.
On Wednesday night, 666 people (seriously) put themselves through their own form of hell by taking the long way to the top of one the tallest buildings in the world when they scaled the Empire State Building from its stairwell. That’s 1,576 steps and 86 flights of hamstring- and gluteal-writhing agony all the way to the building’s glowing observation deck. (more…)
by Markham Heid February 29, 2012, 09:00 am EST
Kettlebell or weights? It depends on your goals. (more…)
These genius tricks will help you drop pounds and sculpt muscle in record timeIt flies. It’s tight. You rarely feel like it’s on your side. Of course, we’re talking about time. You can blame it–or more accurately, the lack of it–for standing in the way of many things, but scoring the body of your dreams is no longer one of them. The latest research shows that sculpting lean legs, a tight tush, and flat abs doesn’t require extra hours at the gym. (more…)
Walking has more health benefits than most people realize.
Can you really walk your way to better health? Research continues to show both the physiological and psychological benefits of the exercise, yet many individuals continue to underrate walking as a health booster.
“The studies are overwhelming; the data is there to show that walking provides all of these health benefits, including reducing the risk of heart and cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer, as well as reducing blood pressure and enhancing mood,” said Dr. Edward Laskowski, co-director of and specialist in physical medicine and rehabilitation at the Mayo Clinic Sports Medicine Center in Rochester, Minn. (more…)
Don’t forget to improve your flexibility as you work on fitness.
By Kelly Turner
Special to the Seattle Times
Cardio is great for the heart, strength training is great for the muscles, and both are amazing for burning calories, but there is one more part to the fitness equation many people overlook: flexibility.
Improving flexibility, or the range of motion of a joint, is important for proper muscle balance, and alignment and to prevent injury. (more…)
Exercise can reduce your risk of getting, or dying from, certain cancers. It can delay or avert Type II diabetes and it can help maintain your cognitive function into old age.
ONE AFTERNOON not long ago, a friend and I were talking at her dining-room table, and I’ll admit it, we were feeling a bit self-righteous.
We’d gone bowling with her parents, and we both noticed her mom could barely roll the lightest ball down the alley. She struggled with a lot of other tasks, too. We didn’t think of her as an elderly person. But there she was, looking feeble.
“Well,” my friend said, shaking her head, “she doesn’t really exercise.” I nodded knowingly.
The way my friend and I see it, there are two kinds of people: exercisers and everyone else. We — the exercisers — prefer to sweat, not sit. They — we’ll call them “the relaxers” — prefer to read, not run. They think we’re nuts. We think they’re slowly letting themselves wither.
We’ll call this The Great Divide, and my friend and I patted ourselves on the back for being on the right side of it. Then we got up to leave.
“Ouch,” I winced, grabbing at my hamstrings.
“I’m sooooo sore!” she groaned.
And as we hobbled away, we felt decidedly less smug.
ARE YOU laughing at us? Nodding sympathetically? Either way, we’ll hazard a guess: Whichever side of The Great Divide you’re on, you can’t imagine living the other way.
“People internalize an image of themselves as an exerciser or not,” says David B. Coppel, a sports psychologist at the University of Washington.
So before we go any further, I’ll confess. I used to think people like me — who exercise four, five, six times a week — were crazy. Three years ago, in the pages of this very magazine, I described my physical condition as being “what you might expect for someone who types for a living.”
Happier, Healthier You
Our Drop 10 cardio plan will turn you into a calorie-torching machine. Find your weekly fat-melting schedule below. You can do the routines with any form of cardio you enjoy. Some days, you’ll HIIT it—as in, high intensity interval training; other days, you’ll dial it down. Begin each session with a five-minute warm-up, and end with a cooldown. Fat, you’re on burn notice.
Why it works HIIT, which alternates all-out cardio bursts with active recovery, releases high levels of hormones that target pudge, especially body fat. Proof: Women who did 20 minutes of HIIT three times per week (8-second sprints, followed by 12 seconds of recovery) lost 5.5 pounds over 15 weeks; those who sweated for twice as long at a steady pace put on 1 pound, a study in the International Journal of Obesity finds. What’s more, the HIITers lost 9.5 percent of their tummy fat, whereas the cruisers gained 10.5 percent. Take that, jelly roll!
What to do Below are five weeks’ worth of effective workouts, all mapped out for you by your Drop 10 trainers, Katrina Hodgson and Karena Dawn, the California girls dubbed “the new faces of fitness” by Jane Fonda. You choose which days to HIIT it hard; for every two intense workouts, you’re rewarded with a take-it-easy day—not to mention a hotter-by-the-day bod. (more…)
First Line of Defense Is Lowering Risk, Even When Genetics Isn’t on Your Side
By RON WINSLOW
Here’s the good news: Heart disease and its consequences are largely preventable. The bad news is that nearly one million Americans will suffer a heart attack this year.
Deaths from coronary heart disease in the U.S. have been cut by 75% during the past 40 years. Hospital admissions for heart attack among the elderly fell by nearly 25% in a five-year period during the last decade, a remarkable feat when many experts had expected the aging population to cause an increase in the problem.
How to Survive a Heart Attack
Still, cardiovascular disease remains the leading killer of both men and women. Doctors worry that the steady progress from an intense public-health campaign beginning in the 1960s is in jeopardy thanks to the obesity epidemic and rising prevalence of diabetes. Only a relative handful of people are fully compliant with recommendations for diet, exercise and other personal habits well proven to help keep hearts healthy. (more…)
Health columnist Kelly Turner explains the benefits of three machines for a great gym workout.
By On Exercise
By Kelly Turner Special to The Seattle Times
The gym is full of twisted metal contraptions with more handles and levers than a medieval torture device, but knowing which machines are worth using cannot only save you time, but get you results faster than you expect.
People like to stick to what they know, and this is no truer than in the gym, which can be an intimidating place for most. The only way to truly get results, however, is to mix up your workout. Doing the same routine, in the same way, day in and day out will eventually hinder your progress. (more…)
By Olivia Putnal, Woman’s Day
When it comes to working out, getting to the gym on a regular basis is only half the battle. The other half? Making the most of your time while you’re there. By paying closer attention to your form, routine, nutrition and more, you’ll be better able to achieve your fitness goals, not to mention avoid injury and weight-loss plateaus. Read on to make sure you’re not committing any common fitness flubs, and if you are, learn how to fix them.
Mistake #1: Not Eating Enough
Keeping yourself properly fueled is vital to a successful workout. Yvonne Castañeda, group exercise manager and private trainer for The Sports Club/LA in Miami, says that many times, when first embarking on a weight-loss journey, her clients skimp on meals. “Working out with little to no food in your system is like embarking on a 300-mile road trip with only a quarter-tank of gas,” she says. “Too often we make the mistake of thinking fewer calories will lead to optimal weight loss. But being properly fueled is essential to making the most of your training.” (more…)
If your belly refuses to flatten, your workout is probably stale. Upgrade your favorite exercises with these tweaks and revisions. Plan on putting these moves into practice and get ready to experience transformed abs.
SIDE PLANK AND ROW(Replaces: Side plank) (more…)
Posted by Don Shelton
If you’re a Seattle runner like I am, you’re no stranger to running in cold, rainy weather. But the kind of bone-chilling temperatures and ankle deep snow that’s hitting the area now is a different matter.
We’re here to help. If you’re looking for some advice on how to stay safe and avoid a pratfall or injury, look no further. Here are 10 tips for runners to weather any kind of nasty extremes, courtesy of running coaches Jess Cover and Sam Davis from RunVermont. These folks seem to know their cold-weather stuff.
So read up and run on.
1. Layer, layer, layer: Layering clothes provides the perfect balance needed for winter running to avoid over- or under-dressing. When done properly, layers will trap the air warmed by your body while still allowing moisture and sweat to be wicked from your skin. Choose layers that can easily be tied around your waist once you begin to warm up; it’s important not to overheat while running since this can put you at risk of hypothermia. (more…)
Thu, Sep 15, 2011
Why not get a workout while you watch TV? After a hard day at work many people, including myself, want to relax and watch television. Break the habit of eating while watching your favorite show and create a new custom. Get into a new routine by working out while watching your favorite program.
#1 Pedal during the program
With a mini pedal exerciser you can pedal during your favorite television program. This compact piece of exercise equipment allows you to sit in the location of your choice, and it is low in cost. I first noticed the mini pedal exerciser when I was at my friend’s house, who is in her 60s. This is a great form of exercise for people of every age.
A torn knee ligament is one of the most debilitating injuries that routinely hit young athletes. Now, medical researchers are deciphering why women are at much greater risk for the problem than men and how it can be prevented.
An estimated 90,000 varsity high-school and college athletes a year suffer an injury to the anterior cruciate ligament, or ACL, which connects the thigh bone to the shin bone. Women are between four and six times as likely as men who play the same sports to be injured, partly because they rely more on ligaments to compensate for less-developed muscles, researchers say. The riskiest sports for ACL tears are soccer, basketball, volleyball, football and skiing, all of which involve sudden stops, changes in direction and jumps.
By Meredith Melnick Tuesday, August 16, 2011 |
U.S. fitness guidelines recommend at least 30 minutes of exercise five days a week. But increasingly, evidence suggests that even half that amount can extend significant health benefits.
Only about a third of Americans currently meet the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) guidelines for physical health, which advise a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week, plus additional strength-training.
Now here’s the good news for the rest of us: even just 15 minutes of moderate exercise a day (or 92 minutes per week) was associated with a three-year increase in life expectancy and a 14% reduction in risk of death by any cause, compared with a sedentary lifestyle, according to a new study.
Each additional 15 minutes of daily exercise (up to 100 minutes a day) reduced the risk of death by an additional 4%, the study found, and people who got 30 minutes of activity a day added about four extra years to their life expectancy, compared with their sedentary peers.
The observational study involved more than 400,000 people in Taiwan, who were followed for an average of about eight years. Researchers gave participants a questionnaire asking about their medical history and lifestyle habits, including how much leisure-time physical activity they got. Based on the answers, researchers divided them into activity intensity groups: light (walking), moderate (brisk walking), vigorous (jogging) and very vigorous (running).
People were characterized as inactive if they got less than one hour of exercise per week. Compared with this group, those who got even small amounts of moderate activity daily lived longer.
“The 30-minute-a-day for five or more days a week has been the golden rule for the last 15 years, but now we found even half that amount could be very beneficial,” lead author Dr. Chi-Pang Wen told ABC News. “As we all feel, finding a slot of 15 minutes is much easier than finding a 30-minute slot in most days of the week.”
But that’s no excuse to scrape by with minimum effort. And it’s certainly no reason to scale back if you’re already working out for at least 30 minutes a day. When it comes to exercise, more is better. As anyone who has ever embarked on a new exercise regimen knows, the hardest part is starting; the longer you stick with it, the easier and more enjoyable it becomes. Over time, as you get fitter, your exercise goals will become easier to attain.
The new study had some limitations. For one, the questionnaires involved self-report, which always carries a measure of inaccuracy. The study was also observational, so it’s not clear whether people’s health outcomes could be attributed to factors other than exercise (though the researchers accounted for other factors like smoking, drinking, cholesterol levels, blood pressure and history of disease), or whether it was inactivity that caused poor health or vice versa.
Still, there is no shortage of existing evidence that increasing physical activity leads to all-around improvements in health, mood and well-being. And the new results suggest that even small amounts of moderate exercise — think biking, walking briskly or dancing — may mean significant benefits.
“The knowledge that as little as 15 minutes per day of exercise on most days of the week can substantially reduce an individual’s risk of dying could encourage many more individuals to incorporate a small amount of physical activity into their busy lives,” wrote Dr. Anil Nigam and Dr. Martin Juneau of the Montreal Heart Institute and the University of Montreal in an accompanying editorial in The Lancet, which published the new study online on Aug. 15.
By Bill Phillips and the Editors of Men’s Health
Aug 15, 2011
SUPER FOODS = SUPER POWERS!
What makes Super Hero’s Super? I will teach kids how they can be healthier, stronger and smarter by the foods they put into their bodies and the activities they choose. Establish healthy building blocks for their lives. Make your kids healthy the fun way!
Warning! Side Effects may include:
Interest in nutritious foods, increased happiness, less picky eating, increased activity level, less colds and flus, decreased crabbiness, urges to cook and prepare foods at home. Better nourishment into their teen and adult years.
Kids : Thursdays 4:30 PM
Don’t just sit around the playground.
When my kids are at the playground, I’m usually the only parent making a spectacle of herself. I do push-ups and lunges. I hang from the monkey bars and try to pull myself up. Or I repeatedly squat down, lower my butt until it hits the bench and then stand up.
Yes, playground workouts can be embarrassing, especially when other moms and dads are relaxing or chatting on cellphones. But if you’re strapped for time, playgrounds are ideal workout spots, and not just because they’re free. You’re stuck there anyway, they’ve got all the equipment you need, and research shows even tiny bouts of exercise are associated with increased fitness.
And while a public workout takes some courage, “your actions might inspire a lifetime of health and fitness in your children or others,” said celebrity fitness trainer Marco Borges.
For some people, playground equipment may even be better than regular-size workout structures, said Borges. Monkey bars, for example, are built for kids so they’re shorter than regular pull-up bars. “That means you can start from a standing position and use your legs for added help,” said Borges, who runs a playground fitness boot camp.
Get out of that chair and move
New exercise guidelines released by the American College of Sports Medicine Tuesday may be more detailed than the last, but don’t worry — the overriding message is that pretty much any kind of activity is better than sitting on the sofa.
Thanks to copious new research the guidelines, last updated in 1998, got an upgrade. The 150-minute or more per week rule for cardio is still there, as is information on strength training. Perhaps the biggest change is the relaxing of stringent exercise guidelines, says Carol Ewing Garber, ACSM vice president and associate professor of movement science at Columbia University. The previous approach emphasized reaching goals for cardio and strength training, a la, “You must do this or you won’t improve your fitness and health,” Garber says. Sure, it would be great for people to reach those goals every week, but that probably won’t happen. “Research now supports the fact that you can do less than what’s recommended and still get benefits. Your weight may stay the same, but your overall health may improve.”
(CNN) – We’re all looking to maximize results while minimizing time and effort in the gym. That search for shortcuts has translated into a lot of myths about exercise. CNN.com asked exercise physiologists, trainers and nutritionists about their most hated exercise myths.
Consider these the 10 persistent myths of fitness.
10) Your cardio machine is counting the calories you’re burning.
“It doesn’t mean anything,” said Mark Macdonald, personal trainer and author of “Body Confidence” about the calorie numbers spit out by the cardio machine.
Some machines don’t even ask for your weight or sex.
“It’s not asking your body composition,” he said. “If you’re at 18% body fat, you’re going to burn a lot more than if you’re female at 35% body fat.”
And how many people know their body fat percentage?
The number calculated by your machine is likely not accurate.
By Bill Phillips and the Editors of Men’s Health
Quick! Let’s free associate. Complete this sentence:
_ SETS OF _ REPS.
Did you answer 3 and 10? Of course you did. It’s the Pavlovian response. After all, anyone who’s ever picked up a dumbbell knows that doing 3 sets of 10 reps of each exercise is the quickest way to build muscle.
Except it’s not. In fact, it’s the quickest way to get nowhere with your workout routine, says Michael Mejia, C.S.C.S., a long-time Men’s Health fitness advisor.
Truth is, today’s most sacred exercise guidelines originated in the ’40s and ’50s, a time when castration was a cutting-edge treatment for prostate cancer, and endurance exercise was thought to be harmful to women. Worse, so-called fitness experts across the country are still spewing these same old conventional wisdoms, despite plenty of research indicating that they (the experts and the wisdoms) aren’t wise at all.
Chances are, these are the rules you exercise by right now. And that means your workout is long past due for a 21st-century overhaul. We asked Mejia to do just that. Here are the five muscles myths he most commonly hears. Hopefully, we’re about to bust them for good.
MYTH #1: DO 8 TO 12 REPETITIONS
The claim: It’s the optimal repetition range for building muscle.
Losing 40 pounds in two weeks is extremely difficult for the average overweight individual. Anyone who has not been medically diagnosed as obese should not attempt to lose such a large amount of weight in such a short period of time. However, for individuals who are very overweight, 40 pounds is not as dramatic in relation to their overall weight. This can be done healthily and safely, although results are not guaranteed. Individual body chemistry and metabolism play large roles in weight loss.
- Difficulty: Challenging
By Laurel House
I don’t get why tabloid magazines continue to “expose” celebrities with cellulite when the fact is that 85% of women – both fat and thin, have it! Another little-known fact about cellulite: it’s not fat’s fault. Which is actually bad news because since it’s not a fat problem, dieting and exercise is not the curative… but it can help minimize the appearance and fight it off before it attacks in the first place.
Cellulite is free-floating fat cells that have penetrated a weakened lattice of connective tissue bands separating the layer of normal fat from the dermis (the middle layer of skin), and have become trapped just below the surface of the skin. There are 3 causes of the sticky stuff:
- Hormones (which is why men infrequently get it)
- Genetics (Thanks a lot mom!)
- Lifestyle (that’s all on you).