Encouraging Health and Happiness

Posts tagged “exercise

The Hardest Workout You’re Not Doing

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…)

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Kettlebells vs. Free Weights: The Smackdown

by Markham Heid February 29, 2012, 09:00 am EST

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Kettlebell or weights? It depends on your goals. (more…)


10 Shape-Up Shortcuts

By The Editors of WOMEN’S HEALTH | Healthy Living – Wed, Aug 8, 2012 7:02 AM EDT

These genius tricks will help you drop pounds and sculpt muscle in record time

 

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 Your Way to Health

Walking has more health benefits than most people realize.

By Shelby Sheehan Bernard

McClatchy-Tribune

Margie Warden, left, and Gladys Johnson walk along a trail at Kansas City, Kan., Community College. Warden and a group of friends have been walking six miles a day for 41 years.

Enlarge this photoSHANE KEYSER / MCT

Margie Warden, left, and Gladys Johnson walk along a trail at Kansas City, Kan., Community College. Warden and a group of friends have been walking six miles a day for 41 years.

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…)


Flexibility a key component of staying fit

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 will change your life, and here’s why.

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.”

(more…)


Wanna lose 10? Just HIIT it!

Apr 26, 2012

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…)