exercise

Guest Post: How to Maximize Muscle Mass Before, During and After a Workout

This article provides a summary of how to build muscle mass and the type of workout required, the best type of exercises to get the quickest results and the importance of diet.

Strength, Size and Endurance Training

There are three main types of workouts. Workouts designed to produce muscle strength, workouts designed to produce muscle size or mass and endurance training workouts.

If you’re training for strength it’s advised to do fewer reps per set (about 1-5), whereas for muscle endurance doing more reps per set is preferable (13-20). Focusing on building muscle mass, involves a type of muscle growth called Sarcoplasmic Hypertrophy and is somewhere between this range.

It is muscle size and mass that I will concern myself with in this article and it’s the most common type of workout, designed to create a lean and bulky muscular look.

Workouts Designed to Produce Muscle Mass

To maximize muscle mass, you have to do more than just push your body to the limit through resistance training. You have to choose the right exercises, the right number of reps and the right amount of rest after each workout. All this done correctly maximizes muscle fibre engagement.

I recommend targeting different muscle groups at different times of the week giving yourself one or two days rest in between exercising that muscle group.

One effective technique is the 3 day split and involves exercising three different muscle groups on three different days of the week. This could involve exercising the legs and Abs on a Monday, taking one day rest and exercising the Chest, Shoulders & Triceps on a Wednesday, taking another days rest and exercising the Back and Biceps on a Friday. Then taking two days rest and repeating the next week.

So for example:

Monday – Work on your Legs and Abs with 3 different exercises. 4 sets for each and 12-15 reps per set

Wednesday – Work on your Chest, Shoulders & Triceps with 3 different exercises. 4 sets for each and 12-15 reps per set

Friday – Work on your Back & Biceps with 3 different exercises. 4 sets for each and 12-15 reps per set

You should pick two or three exercises for each muscle group and then perform 4 sets of between 12-15 reps for each exercise. This would work out at around 8-12 sets per day with 12-15 reps per set.

If three different exercises for each muscle group is too much you should stick to two while starting out, or you could try 2 sets instead of 4 sets for the last exercise.

Working out more than 3 days a week can mean your muscles don’t have time to recover, resulting in wasted effort.

Isolated versus Compound Exercises

You need to choose the correct exercises to maximize muscle growth. This means targeting as many muscles as possible. Compound exercises target more muscle fibres with each lift and therefore provide the most results in the shortest period of time and with the least exercises.

For example a tricep kickback will target just one group of arm muscles — the triceps on the back of the upper arm. However the bench press will target your triceps, pec muscles, and your deltoids, with your biceps acting as a dynamic stabilizer. If you’re targeting two or more muscles than it’s a compound exercise and not an isolated exercise.

By targeting a larger portion of muscle fibres, this will be more taxing on your system and result in a greater release of anabolic hormones resulting in greater muscle growth.

With compound exercises, you don’t need as many exercises per workout and you can spend less time in the gym.

Typical compound exercises include:

• Squats

• Split Squats

• Lunges

• Reverse Lunges

• Pullups

• Deadlifts

• Barbell rows

• Incline bench press

• Decline bench press

• Flat bench press

• Standing Military Press

The Role of Protein, Creatine and Glutamine

Of course nutrition and supplements play a huge role in building muscle with protein being at the top of the list for supplements needed for gaining lean muscles. Creatine and Glutamine are also very important.

Protein should be taken half an hour before a workout to provide your muscles with adequate nutrition thereby reducing the breakdown of muscle or catabolism during workouts. Also, right after a workout, when your muscles are depleted of nutrition. This will aid in muscle recovery and growth. Another important time to take protein is right before bed and upon waking when the body again is again depleted of nutrition.

Glutamine on the other hand should be taken right before bed as this boosts growth hormone levels significantly. Another good time to take glutamine is first thing after waking as this helps in the recovery process from difficult workouts.

You should take creatine about half an hour before a workout and again right after a workout as this creates an anabolic state for your muscles and helps prevent muscle breakdown.

Don’t Over-train

Don’t’ get into the bad habit of working out too long, or train too many days. When it comes to body building, often less is more. Overtraining comes with little to no gains in size or strength. You need to give your muscles time to recover, which means plenty of rest between workouts.

So combining a good workout with the right exercises and reps and the right nutrition, sufficient rest, and a solid supplementation program, you will build a great physique with the least amount of work.

Simon is a personal trainer and gym instructor, his website www.fithealthyliving.com is devoted to all things fitness related, but mainly focused on gym equipment reviews, strength training, workouts, and nutrition.

Healthy, Natural Ways To Feel More Energized

Countless people, probably including a lot of our readers, rely on coffee to get up and go in the mornings and throughout the day. This isn’t really surprising considering all the stresses and responsibilities we have to deal with in modern-day life. While there’s nothing wrong with a controlled amount of caffeine in your diet, you really don’t need the world’s most popular drug to feel perky in the mornings. Here are some of the best natural ways to feel more energized and less stressed

Lighten Up!

Sunlight is nature’s way of telling our body clock that it’s time to start the day. Getting a little more light in your eyes earlier in the day can make a huge difference to how energized you feel throughout the day. Try leaving your bedroom drapes open when you go to bed, or turning on more lights when you get up to simulate sunlight.

Jump Out of Bed

As tempting as it is, resist the urge to hit the “snooze” button and give yourself a few more minutes in your warm, cozy bed. Getting out of bed as soon as you wake up will be much better for your energy levels in the morning.

Get Moving As Soon As Possible

Once you’re out of bed, start doing some kind of exercise to remind your body it’s time to release its energy stores. Yoga is a nice, low-stress choice for this, and there are many yoga moves specifically for making you feel more energized.

Take Some Natural Supplements

Taking supplements can be a slippery slope if you’re working out a lot, but there are a number of natural supplements and vitamins that can do wonders for how energized you feel. Maca root, for example, contains amino acids and minerals that are excellent for promoting energy release.

Eat Something Containing Coconut Oil

The triglycerides in coconut oil are a fast-acting source of energy which your body can process much faster than coffee. Go and buy a big container of coconut oil you can drizzle over your food, or a lot of snacks that are rich in it.

Add Protein to your Breakfast

protein-rich meal in the morning will help your brain cells function, and get rid of that foggy feeling many of us have when we’re trying to get stuck into a day of work. As a bonus, they’ll also repress cravings for food through the rest of the day.

Avoid Late-Night Snacking

If you eat a lot right before you go to bed, it can give you a “food hangover” when you wake up in the morning. If you’re absolutely dying for some kind of food when it’s getting late, then try not to make a meal of it. Choose lighter foods and try to keep your serving under 150 calories.

If you’re sick of feeling sluggish and bleary-eyed every day, then start applying a few of these pointers. You’ll be amazed at what a few tweaks to your lifestyle can do for your energy levels!

Ally Gonzales is the creator of RunningSoleGirl. The go-to place for everything healthy lifestyle and conditioning for running. She’s a runner, speaks a total of five languages, and is a soon-to-be college freshman majoring in Exercise and Sports Science.

Why You Should Take Up Golf

Despite what you might think, golf is not just a workout for retired men, and it is by no means a gentle exercise. In reality, golf incorporates cardiovascular exercise, strength training, and even balance and coordination. It’s also a low-risk injury sport, which is probably why it’s safer for older players to take it up. Read on to find out why you should take up golf and why it should be your next fitness craze.

Long Walks

There is a lot of evidence that walking is good exercise, and golf involves a lot of walking. Most golf courses span across multiple acres of hilly terrain. With 18 holes, the average golf course is between 5 and 8 miles, so you are guaranteed a good workout if you keep a brisk pace between holes. Not to mention how many calories you’ll burn. With all the walking, carrying and swinging involved, golfers can burn up to 1000 calories in a single game.
Once you take up golfing, some side effects from the regular movement include an improved mood, a reduced risk of chronic disease, your legs will look fantastic, and your jeans might feel a little more loose. Remember, this only applies if you don’t take the cart.

Swings Build Strength

Even without weighted clubs, repeated swinging can build up arm strength. Your lower body gets strength training in the form of the aforementioned walking; trekking up those hills is sure to work the quadriceps and hamstrings. Additionally, carrying your own clubs counts as a weight bearing exercise and when used in conjunction with walking you will cause your heart to beat faster and increase calorie burn. If this sounds like to much strength training to take on at once, then just focus on the walking and your golf swing. However, you should also learn more about push carts before you buy one in the hopes of easing your strength training.

Balance

It may not be as obvious as a yoga workout, but golf does involve a great deal of balance. When you first learn how to play golf, your instructor will go over your stance so that you don’t fall over while you swing a club high above your head. Training to achieve the proper balance engages your core abdominal muscles, as well as the muscles of the lower back and even the buttocks. These muscles work together to help prevent back pain, falls and a number of other dangerous occurrences.

Improved Mental Health

Studies show that social interaction with others increases our self-esteem and happiness, and golf is one of the most social sports activities you can do. It can widen your social circle, lift depression, and improve your overall mental health.

Sleep

The more physical activity you do, the easier you find it to sleep at night. Golf incorporates a lot of muscles, takes a lot of concentration, and the players absorb a lot of Vitamin D when they spend time outside. As a result, golfers are more able to sleep soundly without being interrupted by insomnia.

Ally Gonzales is the creator of RunningSoleGirl. The go-to place for everything healthy lifestyle and conditioning for running. She’s a runner, speaks a total of five languages, and is a soon-to-be college freshman majoring in Exercise and Sports Science.

Workout Woes: Three Common Mistakes Women Make At The Gym

Staying in shape is pretty high on many women’s lists of priorities. There are plenty of different reasons why you might want to work out regularly. It could be a desire to look a certain way, or you might just be trying to live a slightly healthier lifestyle. Whatever your reasons are, you likely want to use your time at the gym as productively as possible. There’s nothing more discouraging than putting a lot of effort into your workouts, only to find that they’re not really having any impact. Luckily, if that’s something that you’re dealing with, there are often some pretty simple reasons behind it. This means that you often have to fix one of a selection of pretty simple mistakes in order to start getting the most out of your workout!

Ignoring Weight Training

This is one of the most common mistakes that women make when they’re at the gym, and sadly it comes from some pretty unpleasant gender stereotypes. For one thing, it comes from the idea that women simply don’t have the capacity for strength that men do. The other reason is that there are a lot of stereotypes about what results women “should” get out of their workouts. Many women are taught to avoid getting too muscular because that’s not feminine enough.

These things are both ridiculous, but they do tend to get into many women’s heads a lot of the time. Of course, that doesn’t mean that you should run straight for the heaviest possible weights and potentially hurt yourself. Check out these adjustable dumbbell reviews if you’re looking to get started doing some strength training so that you can find something that fits your personal comfort level. The muscle building that comes with strength training is going to help you get a lot more out of your workout than if you were just focussing on cardio.

Not Refueling After a Workout

Sadly, this comes from more unpleasant stereotypes that surround women trying to get in better shape. You’ll almost always see men at the gym having a protein shake after a workout, and most men’s workout routines involve a pretty hefty amount of calories. Sadly there’s an assumption that a woman at the gym should also be watching their caloric intake really carefully. Of course, it doesn’t take a genius to realize that it’s impossible to have the right amount of energy during any workout if you’re not taking in enough energy in the first place. Make sure that you’re balancing the number of calories you’re eating so that you’re not left exhausted within moments of arriving at the gym.

Not Having Clear Goals

If you don’t have a clear goal to work towards, then you’re going to find it very difficult to find the motivation that you need to stick at anything. A goal to aim for is the thing that gives you the energy you need when you’re faced with the desire to quit. And make no mistake, that desire will appear at some point. When you’re tired and feeling like you just want to give up, having a clear goal in mind is one of the very best ways to give yourself that extra boost you need to motivate yourself. By the same token try to keep your goals realistic, putting in a lot of work but not reaching your goals because they were simply too ambitious, is a seriously effective way to end up frustrated and discouraged.

Ally Gonzales is the creator of RunningSoleGirl. The go-to place for everything healthy lifestyle and conditioning for running. She’s a runner, speaks a total of five languages, and is a soon-to-be college freshman majoring in Exercise and Sports Science.

Three Workout Myths It’s Time To Stop Believing!

There’s a lot of information out there when it comes to trying to have the best possible workout routine. Whether it’s from the internet, from a friend, or from that one guy at the gym, who won’t stop going around giving out unsolicited advice. (You know the one.) However, for every decent piece of workout advice that you come across, you’re likely to end up hearing at least two or three things that are somewhere between pointless and actively dangerous. These kinds of workout myths are a serious pain because they not only waste your time and money but can sometimes have the opposite of the effect that you wanted. To make sure that you don’t fall prey to them, here are a few workout myths that you need to stop believing right now.

Cardio is the Only Way to Lose Weight

Now don’t worry, no one is going to tell you that cardio isn’t important as part of a balanced workout because it definitely is. However, it’s also true that a workout needs more than just cardio in order to be effective. Cardio certainly helps you lose weight as it shifts the balance of calories going in to calories being burned. However, if you’re looking for a more long-term solution, then you need to start incorporating strength training into your workout as well. More muscle means that your body is going to be much better at burning calories while at rest, meaning that it’s going to be far easier to stay in shape in the long run if you’re working out in ways beyond just workout up a sweat on the treadmill.

Sweating Heavily Means You’re Working Out Properly

Speaking of sweat, there’s a stereotype that being drenched in sweat by the end of your workout means you’ve really had a good one. This is not only inaccurate, but it’s the kind of attitude that could actually put your health at risk. Exercising your muscles will increase your body’s temperature, but it’s not sweating that cools you down, it’s the evaporation of that sweat. This means that if you’re drenched in sweat after a workout, your body isn’t actually able to cool down and your body’s temperature is going to keep rising.

Make sure that you’re wearing the right kinds of clothes to work out in. If you’re not wearing breathable fabrics, then you’re going to end up overheating pretty badly. Clothing brands like Gymshark are specially designed to help you stay cool and comfortable while you work out. This Gymshark coupon code can help you save some money on workout gear without having to sacrifice quality at all. You should also make sure not to exercise in places where it’s especially hot or humid since that’s going to greatly increase your chance of overheating.

You Need to Work Out Every Single Day

Working out regularly and often is important, there’s no doubt about that, but the idea that you need to work out every single day is ridiculous. Not only is it not going to make much of a positive difference, working out every day can actually make your workouts less effective. This is because you build muscles while you rest, not while you’re working out. If you don’t give your body a chance to rest then at best, you’re going to end up wasting your time, and at worst, you could do yourself some serious damage.

Ally Gonzales is the creator of RunningSoleGirl. The go-to place for everything healthy lifestyle and conditioning for running. She’s a runner, speaks a total of five languages, and is a soon-to-be college freshman majoring in Exercise and Sports Science.

Getting Active: Don’t Leave Your Weight To Fate

Getting your weight to a level with which you’re happy, whether you need to lose or even gain a few pounds or stone, is never an easy task. Motivation is only half of the equation, as consistency and maintenance when you do start to reach a weight at which you’re happy are the things with which people most frequently struggle. Getting involved with fad diets is often the problem, as a routine which forces you to starve yourself essentially and exercise excessively is something which nobody can keep up on a long term basis.

A healthy exercise regime and dietary pattern must be exactly that: a regime. It must become part of your lifestyle and routine, which means you need to be creating a diet and exercise pattern for yourself which can fit into your daily life (whether you need to squeeze in a run after work or a game of football after school). This is important because you need to keep up your diet and exercise pattern on a permanent basis if you want to keep your weight level consistent and constant. Otherwise, once your fad diet is over and you return to normal, the weight will pile back on instantly.

Yes, it may be frustrating to take the long route to success and gradually knock off the pounds with a new and improved dietary schedule and active lifestyle, but it’s the healthier and smarter way to do so to keep your weight off forever. If you’re wondering how to achieve this, then here are some health tips and tricks to help you become happier with the way you look and the way you feel on a health basis.

Set an End Goal

If you want to develop a new exercise and diet regime and stick to it, then your mindset needs to be focused and on-track. You need to be geared towards an end goal to motivate yourself to strive towards a better lifestyle. Maybe you want to have a more toned physique, and stronger muscles or maybe you just want to shed some pounds and return to a skinnier weight level.

Whatever the case, you must remember why you’re leading a healthier lifestyle; health should be just as important to you as appearance, as keeping your body toned and slim has its practical benefits as well as shallow ones. Write down your goals, pin them on the wall, and remember every morning why you’re doing what you’re doing. Remember why it was so important to you in the first place to get in shape and sort out your eating pattern.

Focus on Your Diet

Diet is so important when it comes to an active lifestyle, as your body needs the correct amount of sustenance for the level of activity demanded of it. For example, strength training requires a lot of your muscles, and you’ll need a protein-heavy diet. Cardio demands a lot of your heart, so fruits, vegetables, and foods high in carbohydrates are necessary. Of course, a balanced diet is always the key. Still, if your weight is holding you back from achieving your end goal because you’re struggling to exercise effectively, you could always consider options such as orlistat tablets alongside a healthy diet and exercise routine to help you lose weight a little more easily.

Obviously, you’ll need to consult with your doctor before trying any medication. Leading a naturally healthy routine should always be at the front of your mind, and you should be taking the safest route towards achieving that. Changing your routine drastically or even on a minor scale is always something you should consider discussing with a medical professional if you think you’re putting a lot of strain on your body very suddenly. It’s a personal call, at the end of the day, as only you know whether you’re demanding a lot of yourself too quickly after months or years of leading quite an inactive or unhealthy lifestyle. You don’t want to push yourself to a breaking point, run into complications and then be deterred from returning to a healthy routine ever again. Ensure you get your diet right for the style of exercise you have in mind.

Take it easy

Most people give up on a new exercise routine or diet because they turn it into a chore. If you want to stick to a healthier lifestyle, you need to ease yourself into it. Go on a walk every day to enjoy nature and shed some pounds while you do so. Take up cycling as a fun activity that doubles up as an excellent form of exercise. Carry small weights on your walk to train your muscles while you get a good cardio workout.

Ally Gonzales is the creator of RunningSoleGirl. The go-to place for everything healthy lifestyle and conditioning for running. She’s a runner, speaks a total of five languages, and is a soon-to-be college freshman majoring in Exercise and Sports Science.

Give It A Rest! Downtime Is As Important As Exercise For Your Body

Lots of people focus on their health these days, and that’s fantastic. It means they have an understanding of how their bodies operate. It also means they often take action to improve their bodies and increase their lifespans. However, it’s possible to overdo it, and you could cause lots of damage if you’re not careful. There’s an old saying about burning the candle at both ends that comes into play here. Believe it or not, downtime is just as important as exercise when looking after your body. For that reason, I wanted to highlight some ideas that could help you to relax better after you work out. Without enough rest, your body will never recover properly.

Try to Sleep for 8 Hours Each Night

Doctors and medical professionals recommend that you should try to get at least eight hours sleep each night. Most people think that’s impossible due to family and work commitments. However, you’ll achieve the goal if you take the time to organize yourself. It’s also vital that you create a comfortable area in which to relax. The last thing you need is a bad back from an uncomfortable mattress. With that in mind, invest in a premium product and treat yourself. At the end of the day, back pain can become debilitating. If you don’t rest your muscles properly, there is a high chance you might strain them the following day. That could put you out of action for weeks.

Listen to Relaxing Audio When You Relax

Many women say to me that drifting off to sleep can become a real hassle. They claim their minds are just too busy, and they can’t stop thinking. One friend even asked if I thought she needed to go to the doctor for medication. In the most extreme circumstances, that might make sense. Even so, there are lots of things you should try first. Medication is a last resort, and you should never take any drugs unless you have no other solution. Before you do that, consider listening to relaxing audio when you’re in the bedroom. There are lots of specialist recordings available on YouTube that are guaranteed to send you to sleep.

Pay for a Professional Massage

Massages are an excellent way to ensure your body relaxes as much as possible. Best of all? You can usually get them before you leave the gym if you speak to the right people. If not, there are sure to be lots of people with the right qualifications in your local area. I know some girls don’t like a stranger rubbing their hands all over them. However, it’s one of the best ways to unwind after a workout. It should stop muscles from becoming too tense the following day. You just have to listen to your body and understand when it needs some assistance. Just be warned; you’ll probably start to form an addiction. I know I did.

What’re Your Thoughts

Now you know about some brilliant ways to relax your body, you should get better results from your workout routine. You should also limit the chances of suffering a muscle injury. There is a time for pushing your body, and a time for letting it recuperate. Whether or not you achieve your fitness goals will depend on how well you strike a balance.

Ally Gonzales is the creator of RunningSoleGirl. The go-to place for everything healthy lifestyle and conditioning for running. She’s a runner, speaks a total of five languages, and is a soon-to-be college freshman majoring in Exercise and Sports Science.

Exercising? You Need These Nutrients

You need to eat well while you’re exercising. Otherwise, you’re simply not going to get all the benefits possible from your activities. But it’s worth finding out how precisely you should eat when you’re exercising.It’s not enough to say “eat well” – you need to know what nutrients your body actually requires!

Sodium

Many people may cringe upon hearing the word “sodium” in relation to health; they know it essentially means you need to think about the inclusion of salt in your diet. But isn’t that a big no-no? Actually, exercise makes you lose sodium very quickly, and if you don’t replenish that sodium then you can experience cramps. Low sodium levels in the long-term can cause hyponatremia. That’s why sports drinks have added salt in them!

Zinc

When you don’t get enough zinc, your oxygen intake can become negatively affected. So if your exercise is focused largely on cardiovascular and endurance activities (and what good exercise routine doesn’t at least feature these things?), then you need to pay attention to your zinc levels. It’s also great for helping to keep testosterone levels up, which is something that will become increasingly important for men approaching middle-age! Chickpeas, spinach, cashews, and mushrooms are fantastic ways to get zinc into your system. (Psst – so is dark chocolate!)

Omega-3

If you’re working on cardiovascular activities, then you need to keep your heart healthy. And there are few nutrients out there better at protecting your heart than omega-3. To many, this means you need to consume fish and fish oil – something that worries vegetarians and vegans! But omega-3 can be found in abundance in berries, seeds, mangoes, and leafy greens. Precisely the kind of things you can combine in a Ninja blender to make a tasty and nutrient-packed smoothie!

Magnesium

When you exercise vigorously, you’re actually putting your bones through quite the ringer. Those frequent hard impacts that accompany running can cause problems if you’re not keeping up your bone strength. Calcium is usually considered the obvious nutrient when it comes to bone strength, but you mustn’t forget about magnesium. It also helps you retain muscle strength. After all, your muscles take similar punishment during rigorous exercise! Avocados and bananas are great sources – they’re also rich in potassium, helping you maintain your energy levels. (Psst – dark chocolate also contains a lot of magnesium! Seriously, don’t underestimate dark chocolate. But, y’know, don’t pig out on it, either.)

Vitamins B, C, D, and E

It might be a safe assumption that you need all the lettered vitamins when you’re exercising regularly. But it’s good to understand why these ones, in particular, are so important. Vitamin B helps you metabolize fats and proteins, an essential function for people who exercise. (Vegans will probably need to take supplements to keep their levels up!) Vitamin C helps prevent shortness of breath during and after exercise, so stock up on oranges and grapefruit!

Vitamin D – the sunshine vitamin – helps the mitochondria in your muscles regenerate energy during exercise. This helps you maintain endurance. As for vitamin E – well, vitamin E is just really good at preventing illness. And few things disrupt your exercise routine quite like being ill!

Ally Gonzales is the creator of RunningSoleGirl. The go-to place for everything healthy lifestyle and conditioning for running. She’s a runner, speaks a total of five languages, and is a soon-to-be college freshman majoring in Exercise and Sports Science.

Fighting Fit: How A Healthy Lifestyle Can Help Your Body Battle Illness

Getting ill is something that we would all avoid all the time if possible. Though this may be a farfetched fantasy, there are a few lifestyle changes that you can make to boost your immune system. As well as reducing your chances of falling ill; you will then be more likely to fight off any illnesses that do happen to come your way. Here are some natural ways that you can improve your odds of staying healthy.

Reduce Your Stress

Many people seem to be living highly stressful lives these days. This nonstop pace can easily run you down and increase your risk of falling ill. A surge in hormones like cortisol and adrenaline that have been closely linked to stress cause a rise in blood pressure and the heart to beat faster. A huge amount of health problems can be linked directly to stress, so try to take action wherever you can. A common coping mechanism is meditation, which can really help refocus our minds away from the common stresses of everyday life.

Alter Your Diet

Omega-3 fatty acids which are commonly found in salmon, walnuts, and seeds can help to stabilize your mood. Superfruits such as pomegranates and blueberries have been shown to have all sorts of positive health properties. Another thing that is constantly being linked to having a major positive effect on your health is green tea; so consider switching your morning cup of coffee for some of the green stuff. Not getting enough nutrients in your diet decreases your body’s ability to fight off illnesses should they arise.

Supplements and Oils

There are plenty of natural supplements and oils that you can take which can have various effects on the body. There are a whole host of examples on www.healthwatchlist.com which can give you a clearer idea. Ultimately, it is a good idea to do some research online so you get a fuller picture.

Regular Exercise

As with a huge amount of other health advice; it all comes back to regular exercise to make all the difference. Losing weight, building healthier bones and boosting mood are just three of the ways that regular exercise can improve your overall health.

Get A Good Night’s Sleep

The restorative properties of sleep are fairly universally acknowledged, but new research is being done all the time that uncovers new pieces of the puzzle of sleep. When you do get ill, this is when your body does a huge proportion of its recovery. As well as this, getting enough sleep can make all the difference when it comes to reducing stress, which brings us right back to the first point on the list.

What’re Your Thoughts?

Ultimately, getting ill is not something that we can always avoid, but taking a few steps to naturally improve your health is within everyone’s reach. The above points mark a good starting point so try them out to see what a difference they could make to your overall health and wellbeing.

Ally Gonzales is the creator of RunningSoleGirl. The go-to place for everything healthy lifestyle and conditioning for running. She’s a runner, speaks a total of five languages, and is a soon-to-be college freshman majoring in Exercise and Sports Science.

Guest Post: 5 Mistakes To Avoid When You Start Exercising

The typical person will begin a workout regimen and stop within six months. The new dieter, on average, doesn’t make it beyond two weeks. The reason is they didn’t see enough results to keep them mentally engaged. When considering the physical body, it is important to be mentally prepared too. It’s a mind over matter thing for those who want to get in shape. Here are five common reasons why people fail at their workout and weight loss journey.

#1 Setting Unrealistic Goals

Have you ever seen someone running a race? There are those who start off with a bang, but they run out of steam half way through. Then there are others that pace themselves throughout the whole journey. The ones who are pacing themselves have learned a thing or two about endurance. They understand that it doesn’t mean anything to make record time on the first lap if you cannot finish the last one. Remember the old saying “slow and steady wins the race?”

Many people start off their journey by doing too much, too quick. They push their bodies far beyond its limit. They expect to have a serious workout and lose 25 pounds in the first week. Things just don’t work that way. It takes time and consistency to be successful. The frequency of the workouts and the intensity is very important. Don’t overestimate your goals. Start slow and increase your time and exercises over a well spanned time frame.

#2 Being Too Easily Distracted

When exercising in your own home, it is easy to be distracted from everything else that is going on. The kids need food, the laundry needs put in the dryer, and you are tired after a long day of work. Sure, exercising at home has its benefits, but it also has the potential for some major distractions. Plan your workouts when you have alone time. You will be far less distracted and able to focus on you.

#3 Doing the Wrong Type of Workout

Most people come up with their own workout based on watching someone else. It can be a person at the gym or one on television. The exercises that you select will directly affect your outcome. Write down your goals and what you hope to accomplish on this journey. Speaking to a personal trainer can help give you insight on the exercises that will get you where you want to be. A trainer can tweak your workout for your body and weight loss goals.

#4 Underestimating Your Eating

Working out and your diet goes hand-in-hand. Do you count calories or do you think that working out should burn whatever you want to eat that day? Many people are in complete denial about what they are putting in their mouth. The quality of calories consumed can hinder your workout and weight loss. Keep it real, and write things down. A food diary is a great way to make sure you are getting the right types of foods in the correct quantities. Calorie counter apps are great for tracking both weight loss and exercise progress.

#5 All Quantity, No Quality

If you go to the gym, take a look at all the people that are getting a quality workout. What is really amazing is the number of people who are just wandering aimlessly around. They may be reading a book while walking at a snail’s pace on the treadmill. Many lift weights that are so light that they look bored. Some go to the gym to exercise out of habit. However, they are on automatic pilot. Ask yourself what you want to get out of your workout. If you want to get good results, then you will need to do some serious exercise. Enjoy your workout time and have some fun. If you don’t enjoy what you are doing, you won’t be able to force yourself to do it for long.

Changing Your Mindset

Working out can be an adventure. To keep yourself in check, make a goal list and upgrade your goals periodically. Once you reach a milestone, pat yourself on the back and set a new one. With dedication and a great mindset, you can have an amazing body in no time. This journey starts in the mind before it ever involves the body.

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