Fitness: Stuff You Need To Know!

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In this article, I’d like to cover a variety of topics – multiple bits of valuable information, or as I like to refer to it, “stuff you should know.” I’ll cover exercise, training technique, nutrition and fact versus fiction. If you love scanning information, learning quickly and then moving on to the next thing in your day, then this article is for you.

Whether you are a beginner, novice or experienced exerciser, here‘s some “stuff” I think you should know:

The Magic Workout
Get it into your mind that there is no “best and only way” to workout. I get a multitude of questions concerning the efficiency of “super slow rep” workouts, “the best video tape workout,” “the best number of days to workout” etc. In reality, it’s all good if it works for you, but you don’t want to stay with any of it for too long. Don’t let the body or the mind adapt. The body will adapt to any exercise routine in approximately 4-6 weeks. Vary volume of sets, time between sets, reps, exercises, cardiovascular exercises, exercise tapes, etc. Manipulate your routine every 3-4 weeks and view CHANGE as the key constant.

Nutrition
When a person starts eating less food than their body uses on a daily basis (calorie restriction), intermediate energy sources are needed to make up the caloric difference. These sources are blood sugar, liver and muscle glycogen (sugar) and blood lipids (fat). After a few days of intelligent calorie restriction, the liver begins to convert stored body fat into new glucose (carbohydrate). This process, known as glucogenesis, will convert as much body fat to glucose as necessary to make up any caloric deficit. That’s part of the major process in losing body fat.

Exercise form and technique
Cheating on form and technique while weight training catches up on everyone eventually – by way of injuries. In weight training, we often place too much emphasis on how much weight to lift and not enough on how or why we perform the lift. Always perform your weight training with perfect form and technique. This way you’ll make great progress and prevent injury.

Fatigue during exercise
Most people think too much along the lines of “no pain, no gain” or “if I workout two hours a day seven days per week, I’ll improve.” Don’t seek fatigue; instead, MANAGE it during the workout. If you have lots of energy during a certain workout, do a few more sets or add five minutes to your cardio routine. If you’re super tired, back off a few sets or reduce the time of your cardio session. Relish in your ability to manage your energy and your mind.

Stay with the basics
Weight train for about 35 minutes to an hour three to four days per week and perform cardio 3-4 days per week for 30-40 minutes; eat a little less; take in enough protein; drink a lot of water; get plenty of rest and be consistent. That’s how you make progress. If you don’t have time for this much exercise, that’s okay. Simply scale back the programme – but remain consistent.

Height and Weight
Height and weight rarely tell you all you need to know. The key is finding out how much muscle versus fat that’s on your body. One person can be 5’4” and weigh 9 stones and look great. Another person with the same height and weight may look soft and out of shape. The first undoubtedly has more muscle mass.

The best way to lose body fat
Fall down, get back up… fall down, get back up… fall down, get back up. No matter how many times you waver from your diet plan, don’t give up. Try to focus on the emotion you’ll eventually feel when you achieve your goal. That’s the key. We live in a very “hand holding” society. I encourage you to challenge yourself and call upon your own levels of discipline. It sits there waiting for you, always waiting for you to exercise it.

Beware of magic potions
Don’t get hooked into supplements that promise to magically reduce body fat or commercials that sell ineffective products and make claims to flatten your abs. Remember, these companies are just in it for a quick buck and don’t provide all the information you require to make a wise decision. They prey on emotion and impulse buying. Stay away…far away.

Applied knowledge
I know you know this, but I have to say it anyway. No matter how much knowledge you have about nutrition and exercise, it doesn’t matter unless you apply it. Application does not mean perfection. It simply means that you steadily move towards your goal. You do know what your short and long-term goals are, don’t you? Gather as much knowledge as possible concerning exercise and nutrition and how YOUR body reacts to it. That way you will see the results you want – a healthier, fitter body!

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