How To Workout On A Budget

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By Joel Cortez

BikingYou don’t have to spend a lot of money to get in shape. Here are some tips to help you get fit without dishing out the dough.

1. Look for alternatives. It’s important to recognize that there are plenty of exercises you can do that don’t cost a dime. Running, hiking, and walking are free – once you’ve bought a good pair of shoes. And if you can’t afford the expensive monthly gym membership, purchase a couple of good workout videos and some dumbbells. P90X, or any of the workouts will give you good results without the cost of a gym. They aren’t cheap, but if you stick with the programs, you’ll see a change in your body and your fitness levels in a matter of weeks.

2. Use free apps to track your calories, water intake, and exercise. Here are a few free (or very inexpensive) apps to consider. Each of these is easy to find via a search in iTunes.

– Lose It! By FitNow
– FitDay Mobile
– Nike Training Club
– iTreadmill Pedometer Ultra with PocketStep
– C25K
– Runkeeper
– Strava

3. Get social. Use your favorite social media tools as free support groups. Post your workouts or weight loss success on facebook and twitter – or do a google search for a weight loss forum where you can meet people with similar goals.

4. Find free workouts online. Yoga Today offers a new free yoga workout each week. And iTrain has a 6 Week Slimdown for Women program available via iTunes.

5. Use Pinterest to find the very latest tips, deals, and ideas on health, fitness, and weight loss. Pinterest is rather addicting, and you can find lots of inspiring advice, as well as coupons and deals on fitness equipment, diet programs, and healthy recipes.

6. Shop smart. Know when it’s worth it to fork out the extra money for organic foods, for example. Doing so is easy if you follow these two rules of thumb: Buy organic if the food is near the top of the food chain,high proteins are a good example(in other words, buy organic dairy, eggs, and meat.)For Peanut Butter & Whole Wheat Crackers-the multi-grain wheat crackers and whole wheat are fiber-rich and unrefined, and with your dab of peanut butter, you have a tasty and wholesome snack with adequate protein, which will keep you full for longer. Who says a weight loss diet is at the expense of taste?

As for fruits and vegetables, buy the following items in their organic form: apples, bell peppers, celery, cherries, peaches, nectarines, grapes, pears, potatoes, raspberries, spinach, and strawberries. This list is often referred to as the “dirty dozen” because researchers say you can slash your exposure to pesticides by as much as 90 percent by always buying these foods in their organic form.

7. Proteins for body building. Creatine is a nutrient that is obtained naturally in foods including meats and other proteins. Everyone has creatine in their muscle cells as it is the nutrient which enables us to use our muscles for heavy tasks. Taking creatine as a body building supplement means that your muscles can take on a greater workload so to speak. It enables you to work harder and lift heavier weights, meaning that as your muscles are worked harder, and therefore will grow faster.

Protein shakes and protein bars are another essential body building supplement. Protein is the nutrient which helps us to grow, so is obviously essential for muscle growth. Protein shakes and protein bars provide an extra boost of protein which not only helps with muscle building but also helps weight management, a good immune system, and bone support.

Purchasing protein in bulk from bodybuilding.com using a coupon will also save you money as you try to achieve your weight loss/fitness goal.

Get The Most Out Of Your Summer Workout

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By Annie Driscoll

joggersIn 2014, Americans visited the gym more than 5 billion times. Our appetite for fitness, and new ways to stay fit, just continues to grow more and more each year. The athletic apparel industry is booming. We’re living in a time where there are more workout options than ever before. But, in this sea of options, it can be difficult to figure out which one works best for you on an individual level. Long story short, your workout is about YOU. It’s all about what works best for your body, your mind, and even your wallet. Here are some ideas for how to make your workout work for you.

1. Figure out what you like to do.

Whether it’s running, hiking, swimming, paddling, or weightlifting—find a workout that doesn’t feel like a chore. This could easily involve getting outside. Lots of people hate the feeling of being holed up in a gym. Being outside makes all the difference in your attitude towards getting fit. If you live near a body of water, go for a rough-water swim. If not, try a trail run or a good hike. Whatever you choose, try to make it something you genuinely enjoy doing.

2. Stay safe, and keep your peace of mind intact.

Ladies especially, bring along a whistle or some pepper spray. There’s this cool company called Booby Trap Bras that makes sports bras and sleeves that hold a blade for self defense, equipped with a slash-proof pocket for safekeeping. Invest some time in learning self defense. If you’re working out outside, knowing how to properly defend yourself in the event of an incident will give you some much needed peace of mind. Also, you’ll have one less thing to try to focus on if you don’t have to be as worried about your personal safety. Guys, feeling safe is important for you too. Know how to protect yourself!

3. Bring a friend along.

This ties into the safety thing as well. Working out is way more fun (and safe) with a buddy. Hit the gym with a partner (you’ll have someone to chat with and to spot you while you’re lifting) or catch up outside on the trails. Dogs also make fantastic training partners—the adventure will be great for you.

4. Wear clothes that make you feel good.

Whether it’s bright colors, bold patterns, or new technology, clothes can be a great motivator. You’re more likely to feel your best if you look your best, and wanting to show off your new gear can be a great way to get yourself to the gym. Look for clothes that are long-lasting, sun protective (usually labelled with a UPF rating), and functional both on land and in water. Invest in yourself!

5. Be happy.

Be happy with what you’ve accomplished, but never content. In other words, know that you’ve given it all you’ve got, but strive to always better yourself. No matter where you start, all that matters is that you’re willing to go the distance to get a little better. Happy working out!

– Annie Driscoll grew up in San Diego as a competitive swimmer and I am now a collegiate athlete living in New York City. In my free time I like to hike, go to the beach, and watch The Bachelorette with my mom. She currently writes and helps the team out at Graced By Grit.

Stretch The Effectiveness Of Your Workout

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stretchThank you to the Baylor College of Medicine for supplying this article. Please share your thoughts below…..

We’ve all heard that you should warm-up before a workout, but according to sports medicine experts at Baylor College of Medicine, oftentimes stretching is misinterpreted as a warm-up, and a proper warm-up before exercise that includes dynamic stretches is most beneficial.

“Dynamic warm-up programs have been shown to prevent injuries,” said Dr. Theodore Shybut, sports medicine expert and assistant professor of orthopedic surgery at Baylor. “The real key for athletes is learning an appropriate warm-up routine for their sport and incorporating it into their training.”

A proper warm-up to exercise is done by using dynamic movements that ramp up in intensity and eventually mimic the activity you will be participating in, according to Meghan McKay, athletic trainer with Baylor.

“Warm-ups should focus on warming up the body for your activity,” said McKay. “When the warm-up is complete, you should have an increased heart rate and be breaking a sweat.”

According to Shybut, warm-ups should be tailored to sports demands.

For example, if you’re playing soccer, a typical warm-up should include walking lunges, side squats, walking toe touches, ball touches, gradual springs, backpedals and shuttles. Baseball pitchers and other throwers need to activate their core, rotator cuff, periscapular and shoulder girdle, as well as arm and forearm muscles.

Ideally, you should warm up and cool down all body parts. If you’re limited on time, focus on those that are primarily used for the activity and do the next closest body part secondarily, said McKay.

stretchAfter exercising, focus on long, slow stretches for each major body part. The best approach is to go slowly into the stretch, hold for 20 to 30 seconds and repeat three to five times per body part and side. When cooling down, you should go into the stretch until you feel discomfort, not pain. If repeating the same stretch three to five times, you should be able to get a little further into the stretch than the previous time. If you aren’t feeling the stretch, find a modified version or different stretch for the same body part.

“Don’t forget to stretch your upper body and back if you’re doing lower extremity activities like running or lifting,” said McKay.

The Best Fitting Workout Shoes For Obese

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By Dana Smith

healthywordsAlmost everyone is a fan of sneakers and running shoes. However, some have a hard luck finding the perfect pair of shoes. Take someone who weighs 200 or 300 pounds or more. Definitely, many of these people find it tough to purchase the right pair because commonly, a retailer might sell shoes according to sole type; however, rarely does one take into consideration the needs of shoes varying in accordance to a person’s weight.

The problem with overweight people and shoes is that they either are not able to find the correct size or are not able to get the style that they are looking for. A plus-size person often complains about getting sores on the feet, shoe bites, aches as well as pains. So, what is the key to purchasing the right shoes for those who weigh a little or a lot extra than normal?

Keep the Following Tips in Mind

1. Brands Are Always Safer Option: While it is recommend for all that they purchase shoes from a reliable brand or retailer, it is a must for overweight and obese people to shop for branded shoes. Certain special retailers manufacture shoes for plus-size people. Do not experiment much with regard to the place from where you purchase shoes. Remember, shoes are not shampoo. Convenience and comfort come first.

2. The Type that Suits: While you should not change the retailer or brand very frequently, you must try out different shoe types to find out which one fits you the best. From spiked running shoes to the one’s that come with a spring-technology to sneakers with thicker soles, keep trying till you find your running mate.

3. Shop Online, With Care: Though there are a number of online stores that promise the best of quality in their products. However, there are very few who actually deliver what they assure. For obese people, it is important that they be double sure about the quality of the shoes before they make a purchase online. There are very few online stores like Zelen shoes, which fulfill the quality standards when it comes to making a purchase online.

4. Try Before You Buy: Until and unless you are extremely sure that the shoe that shows your size on the sole will fit you and be comfortable too, never pick a shoe before you try it on. And, the best way to try on the shoes or boots is to wear them with the same or similar socks that you are actually going to wear them with while running or jogging.

5. Purchase Often: If your shoe has started showing signs of wear and tear, it is time to replace them. Do not wait for the shoes to deplete completely before you chuck them. Even a bit of depreciation of the sole of your shoes can do much harm to your feet. It is better to buy a new pair from online shoe stores than to spend money on pain-killers later on.

The above listed are some of the tips that must be taken as the holy grail of shoe purchasing, by all who weigh heavy. These act like precautionary measures that not only save one from foot aches and pains, but also add to the comfort of a workout. Whether you wish to buy shoes online or from a physical store, you will only reap the full benefits of the money paid, if you make a diligent purchase.

– Dana Smith is an experienced writer who currently writes on subjects of fashion and art. She loves to buy shoes online. Her love for everything fashion related, qualifies her to write on shoes, clothes, cosmetics and more.

7 Ways To Stay Motivated When Starting A New Workout Routine With Your Teens

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By Kenny Meyers

teensBecause nearly 16 percent of kids and teens in the U.S. are overweight, it is more important now than ever for parents and kids to develop a healthy living regimen and a strategy to remain motivated to exercise. Staying active can prevent a teen’s chances of developing Type 2 diabetes or from developing cardiovascular problems. If you develop a regimen with your kids, they’re more likely to maintain good habits into their adulthood. Here are some suggestions to keep in mind when you’re looking for ways to stay motivated:

1. Explain the Importance of Health to Your Teens

Kids — like everyone else — aren’t just motivated by force; they need to know why they need to do something. If exercising doesn’t seem worthwhile, parents cannot motivate their teens to exercise simply by telling them to do so. They need to tell them why exercise is beneficial to their bodies.

Working out can help you and your teens look good and feel good, two important things to every young person’s self-esteem. Exercise can also potentially reduce acne, another great way to encourage your teens to go for that run or enroll in strength training.

2. Incorporate Exercise Into Your Daily Life

When you set aside designated times during the day for physical activity, your teens can get their minds prepared to exercise and be ready. Parents can also get other neighborhood kids involved to keep everyone motivated and prepared. This buddy system is more effective than just trying to tough it out on your own. Don’t treat the workout like some foreign or dangerous thing. Make it a normal part of your day, and soon enough it’ll feel natural.

3. Develop a Regimen of Fun Exercises

If exercising is fun, teens are more likely to engage. Think outside the box and look for ways to stay health and active that are also challenging and interesting. Try getting your teens involved in bike riding or karate classes. Walking the dog or going to a water park will also help younger teens exercise. Most families do not recognize how much exercise they can get just by going on regular outings and walking during the day. Walking around amusement parks, zoos, or nature centers can help you forget that you’re exercising while you’re viewing the sites. You could even hike at a local park. Something like ballroom dancing or softball would also be a good way to get the body moving.

4. Enroll Your Teens in Organized Sports

Organized sports are an excellent way to help teens get active without being bored. Anything will do, so talk with your teen about his interests and see what sport appeals to him. Volleyball, basketball, baseball, or football may be fun enough to motivate him to exercise without seeming like a chore. Plus there’s the added benefit of teamwork and camaraderie.

exerciseball5. Reward Teens for Exercising

Obviously, you’d want the reward to be tied to the workout or at least generally healthy — it wouldn’t make a lot of sense to congratulate your teen on her first 5K with a cake — but there are plenty of options available to help you entice your teen to sticking to the workout. For instance, maybe she’s been eyeing a new set of running shoes, or an iPod for exercising, or taking a trip with friends. Keep the reward positive and goal-oriented.

6. Add Some Variety to Your Schedule

To keep the exercises from getting boring, try to alternate your schedule. For instance, on Monday, take your teens to baseball or softball practice. On Wednesday, take them to ballroom dancing classes. On Friday, take them to martial arts classes. If the weather cooperates or you have an indoor pool, you can try to go swimming on the weekend. Variety will keep the kids going.

7. Get Them Out of the House

It’s easier than ever these days for teens to stay inside and glued to screens all day and all night. One way to get them on their feet and back into an active lifestyle is to limit the amount of time your teen can use his computer or tablet. You can also set up basic physical chores in and around the house, or help him find a job. This will give him not only some pocket money, but the opportunity to get out, stay active, and meet new people.

If you want to remain motivated with your new workout routine, it just takes a little planning. With the right motivation, your kids will remain active and healthy throughout their lives. Communicate with your teens and help them develop good habits early. You’ll be pleased with the results.

– Submitted by Jessica Clark, representing KennyMeyers.com

Shave Minutes (Even Hours) Off Your Workout by Swapping Out These 4 Unnecessary Time-Wasters

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Bay Club Vice President of Fitness Jennifer Beaton reveals the common exercises, techniques, and habits that tack on lots of time but little benefit—and what to replace them with to boost workout effectiveness.

malepushupAt Bay Club, operator of private luxury athletic clubs and sports resorts in California, trainers have a unique window into a wide range of workout MOs. From brand new exercisers to dedicated veterans, clients come to Bay Club for amenities like member cocktail parties, conference facilities, complimentary refreshments, and the in-house spa—but often end up spending more time on the machines when they could be out cooling off at the pool

“At our clubs, clients may not actually want to get out of the gym quicker! But almost everyone could benefit from getting a more effective workout in less time and reaching their goals sooner,” says Beaton, certified personal trainer at Bay Club’s San Francisco location. To that end, here are four moves s/he gives permission to skip:

Excessive rest. All those minutes spent sitting on the bench staring at your watch really add up. “If you can sit down and read the paper between sets, you are likely resting too long,” says Beaton. To see better results with the very same moves, and optimize your time, try super setting exercises such as push ups and squats, to allow rest of a muscle group while you work another muscle group. Replacing station rest with active rest such as 30 seconds of high intensity cardio can also optimize calories burned and muscle recovery.

girljogSteady-state cardio. In other words, those marathon (no pun intended) treadmill sessions. “We see many members who do the same 60 minutes of cardio at the same intensity every day for 15 years. These individuals no longer see improvements and often start to see declines in overall condition. They would benefit by mixing up their routine, adding intervals and high intensity work,” says Beaton

Isolation exercises. “Life is full of dynamic movement, and therefore our workouts should simulate and enhance those efforts by using multi-joint, compound movements like squats, lunges, and pull-ups as opposed to, for example, adductor/abductor machines or bicep curls. To get the most bang for your buck, focus on performing movements that recruit as many muscles as possible; those smaller secondary muscles will get plenty of work as they support the larger muscle groups during those movements,” says Beaton.

Endless crunches. Likewise, if your goal is a great-looking midsection, ab-isolating exercises may miss the mark. “I often see people doing 15-20 minutes of crunches in hopes that it’ll deliver 6-pack abs. Their time would be better spent on nutrition, a solid full-body strength routine, and a balanced cardiovascular program,” says Beaton.

For more workout reward ideas, details on the above, and/or to schedule an interview with a Bay Club trainer on any fitness topic, contact Annie Appel at aappel@wac-clubs.com or 415.901.9220.

About The BAY CLub

Founded in 1977, the Bay Club is the owner and operator of 11 private health, fitness, athletic, sports, and lifestyle resorts on the West Coast. Featuring six regional campuses, the Bay Club provides club members with the finest quality programming catered to the entire family including traditional fitness elements and convenient solutions to daily work, family and life demands. For 35 years, the Bay Club has maintained the highest standards of professional service, earning a reputation as one of the leading private club companies in the United States. The company employs approximately 2,000 people and is headquartered in San Francisco, California. For more information on the Bay Club, its clubs or services, visit: www.explorebayclub.com.

Three Best Strength Workout Routines For Women

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By Rod Devreese

womanstrengthworkoutWomen, especially on their late teens all the way to middle age have this one common frustration – to look as fabulous and fit as their favorite star. Lo and behold not all women are built the same. Due to factors universal to all of us – time, money, discipline, etc. not all women can have those to-die-for washboard abs or that firm behind that everyone is talking about.

Let’s face it; you can’t achieve that sexy physique with minimal effort but expecting maximum results. Advertisements on TV promise everything under the sun but mostly they’re all just a bunch of bull. Here are three surefire workout routines for women to pump up those problem areas specifically the arms, abs and lower extremities. Note that this will always be more effective if done with proper diet.

The Arms

Most women are afraid of lifting weights just because it might make their arms larger. Wrong. By forcing your body to burn calories more than they usually do, it essentially carves away the fat to reveal more lean muscle. Goodbye flabby arms!

Body weight training can be most beneficial for a newbie. By doing pull-ups and push-ups, you essentially gain the strength to lift your own weight. This prepares you for the big boys and all that iron. One can easily do this at home without need for any other equipment. As you progress and with proper supervision you can start on with free weights, gradually going heavier.

Push-ups with mountain climbers will give you a good cardio workout while firming essentially your arms, legs, chest and abs. You can do this by getting on the push-up position but with your arms straight and on the balls of your feet. Lift your right knee to your right arm. Hold for thirty seconds with your back straight. Do this with the other arm and leg. Then slowly bend your arms to ninety degrees and back up to the original position. Do this in eight to twelve repetitions.

The Abs

exerciseballWhole body exercises can make great abs like the push-ups I mentioned earlier. But to concentrate specifically on the abdominal muscles, crunches are the way to go. Add some resistance by doing this on an exercise ball. It supports the back and firms your butt. Sit on the exercise ball and slowly roll your back with your arms crossed. Lift your shoulders and tighten that abs. Release and get back to the original position.

The Lower extremities

The hips butt and legs are the most problematic areas in women. Plie squats with shoulder raises can be most effective. Do this by standing with your feet wide apart about shoulder length. Then slowly bend your knees up to ninety degrees while tucking your stomach in. Then raise your arms (preferably done with dumbbells) up to your head and slowly lower them. Do this for about five seconds in eight to twelve reps.

Train hard

The myth that men and women have to train based on their gender is wrong in so many ways. That notion that we are all created equal proves true at this point. Look at all the athletes out there. Strength training and high intensity interval routines challenge the body to adapt to the ever-changing movements. These workout routines are great for your heart and force your body to burn all that fat FAST!

– Rod Devreese is a health and fitness enthusiast as well as an author for www.AllWorkoutRoutines.com. His research and writing focus mainly on workout routines for women and workout plans.

Turn That Frown Upside Down…….Adventures In Aerial Fitness

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By Kim Evans

arielfitnessI am an upbeat person who is usually in a good mood, but I did something that really made my day. On a recent visit to the Phoenix area, I took an aerial fitness class at Tough Lotus in Chandler AZ. According to owner instructor Marnie Valliere the class is a combination of yoga, Pilates, suspension training moves done using an aerial silk or hammock suspended from the ceiling. You will work your entire body in the 3-D space across all planes of motion, upper and lower body strength will increase, you can stretch a little deeper and have better balance.

Walking into the space you see a dozen or more hammocks suspended from the ceiling over a cheerful black and white checkered floor. Each person is instructed how to sit in the hammock to get used to being airborne. Marnie explains the philosophy behind the class, how you will benefit by lengthening your body, how you can move through a range of motion stretch better or further when you are not attached to the floor. She talked about spinal decompression, the vestibular system and how aerial fitness can benefit your balance and sense of motion. And so the class started.

In addition to the large hammock, there are loops of varying lengths to use with your feet or hands. We sat in the swing and put one foot in a sling and one two three we were off! It was important that we all lifted up at the same time so that we didn’t crash into each other. It was exhilarating to have all of the swings moving to and fro, creating a slight breeze. It was hard not to say “Wheee!”

Marnie guided us through many moves, some with one foot on the ground, some up off the ground. It was so relaxing and freeing. Finally we moved to inverting in the swing. Wow…..that was fun, and a bit nauseating! We hung upside down for a while with our legs wrapped around the sling. We put our hands on the ground to stretch out. At the end of class we pulled the hammock from tip to toe and stretched out in the cocoon for quiet time. We all got out of our silks smiling.

As I went through the day, I realized that I felt pretty awesome.

As I went through the day, I realized that I felt pretty awesome. I felt loose, no pain and relaxed. Being in the swing was akin to swimming for me, another space where you can move freely and with ease. No wonder I enjoyed it.

I think this is a great complimentary training for stand up paddling. I confess, I have some issues with getting sea sick, and anything that I can do to help to acclimate my vestibular system and be more comfortable is something that I will continue doing. I was fine inverting, but shutting my eyes was not comfortable. I plan on taking aerial fitness classes again, and even buying a system to use at home. I also liked how my spine felt afterwards…..long and strong.

NOTE: It has been four days since I took the aerial fitness class at Tough Lotus. I was a little bit sore on Monday, but that is all gone today. And when I went to the pool for my swim I realized that I was loose and pain free. My swim was focused and strong. I think that aerial fitness got me back in alignment and worked out any kinks that I may have had. And that is even after sitting on a cramped airplane for four hours on Sunday. I found a place in the Grand Rapids area that has aerial yoga, and I am going to try that soon.

– Guest Author, Kim Evans, Tough Lotus

Spinning Or Running – What’s A Healthier Workout Regimen?

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By Jeff Nexder

girljogGetting in shape is no walk in the park, but perhaps that’s because walking in the park doesn’t burn many calories. If you’re serious about getting healthy, the key is to make the most effective use of your exercise time. Running and indoor cycling are two very popular options, and in fact both of these routines can help you to achieve your fitness goals, but the questions remains, which one offers the competitive edge you need?

Running

Running is perhaps the oldest workout on Earth, and it still holds up as well as ever. Daily running can help you to burn calories, eliminate or prevent obesity, maintain a healthy heart, relieve stress and even alleviate depression. That’s because rigorous cardiovascular exercise results in the release of endorphins, which are pleasure signals from the brain. The number of calories burned during a run depends largely on the size of the runner and the amount of effort put forth, but according to research, 155-pound person running at 6mph can burn an average of 704 calories in an hour.

Indoor Cycling

spinclassSpinning classes have become exceedingly popular over the past couple of decades, and it’s not surprising. This challenging workout—performed on stationary bicycles—provides all of the same benefits of running, but without the risks. While running places a lot of strain on the joints, indoor cycling is safe for just about anyone. According to experts, indoor cycling offers a comparable—and possibly even preferable—calorie-burning workout, with a 155-pound person burning an average of 739 calories per hour during a vigorous session. Indoor cycling also offers an appealing social element, as Spinning classes are great for making new friends and staying motivated in a structured environment.

The Verdict

Running places more stress on the body, which can mean greater potential for injury, but indoor cycling can get expensive if you don’t already possess a stationary bike or gym membership.

There are pros and cons to consider on both sides. Running places more stress on the body, which can mean greater potential for injury, but indoor cycling can get expensive if you don’t already possess a stationary bike or gym membership. Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to the question of biking vs running, because your own personality is also important variable. Some people prefer the freedom of racing against the wind, while others thrive in a group class setting.

Find Your Perfect Workout Today

If you have never tried indoor cycling, find a class in your area today and see if it’s a good fit for you. If you’re interested in running, consider challenging yourself by training for a 5k, 10k or even a marathon. The important thing is that you get out there and be active. Start burning those calories today!

– Jeff Nexder has a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of California Riverside, and has been writing professionally for the past decade. His articles have appeared in publications as wide- ranging as Livestrong, The Houston Chronicle Business and the San Francisco Chronicle. He currently contributes content to Spinning.com. In his spare time, he enjoys working out and attending rock concerts.

Optimal Workout Starts With Smart Diet Choices

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joggersFrom Your Health Journal…..”What a great article written by Linda Copp for U T San Diego called Optimal Workout Starts With Smart Diet Choices. So many people who train to get healthy or prepare for an athletic event work the body hard with various exercise, but many times, the fail to eat healthy which is extremely important. Athletic ability is comes from both genetics and training. But, without smart food choices and timing of meals, training and performance may be compromised. It is imperative that the majority of the athlete’s diet leading up to an event includes nutrient-dense foods to ensure that the required nutrients are available for general health and optimizing training. Active individuals must consume diets that are rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grains; are low in saturated and trans fats; and contain adequate fiber and protein. Carbohydrates do play an important role in a healthy training diet, but make sure they are the complex carbohydrates, not the simple carbohydrates. Complex carbohydrates come from whole grains like oatmeal, oatbran, rice, breads, pitas, tortillas, buckwheat, barley, beans, and lentals. They give you long lasting energy and higher in nutritional value. Please visit the U T San Diego web site to read this important article as well as support Ms. Copp in her message. The link is provided below.”

From the article…..

Are you preparing for that 10K race, half marathon, marathon, swim meet, long hike, soccer tournament or cross-country bicycle ride? Put in those laps, miles, games and rides, but don’t forget to pay attention to what you’re putting in your body. Pre-event nutrition is essential for optimum performance.

Athletic ability is derived from both genetics and training. However, without high-quality food choices and the appropriate timing of meals, training and performance may be compromised. It is important that the majority of the athlete’s diet leading up to an event includes nutrient-dense foods to ensure that the required nutrients are available for general health and optimizing training. Active individuals must consume diets that are rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grains; are low in saturated and trans fats; and contain adequate fiber and protein.

Carbohydrates are the best foods to fuel one’s muscles, because they provide glycogen to the muscles for energy during exercise. They also digest quickly and are readily available for fuel. These can be in the form of simple sugars such as in fruits and juices or complex carbohydrates as in pasta, bread, rice, cereal, oatmeal, corn and many other grains.

Protein is important for muscle growth and to repair muscle damage after workouts. Consuming sources of fat is important not only for energy but also to help your body use some vitamins and plant compounds known as phytochemicals.

Vitamins and minerals help to release the energy stored in food so that your body can use it as fuel. Water is the most important nutrient to keep you hydrated as you exercise. It is integral to replace fluids you lose through sweat or performance will suffer.

Here are some food suggestions to help you prepare for the event. Because we are all unique, each of us must experiment to figure out which foods — and how much of them — work best before an event. Some athletes can consume a large meal right before an event and experience no digestive problems. Others would rather not eat anything for four hours prior. Each of us must determine which foods, and also if any, settle easily, and when we should eat them. The current research does suggest that pre-exercise food actually enhances performance.

To read the full article…..Click here