Friday, 30 August 2013

Fitness Mistakes You Should Avoid

A human is a perfect biological machine and the body is like an exoskeleton. Anatomy explains each and every part of it scientifically. That’s why you need to know about the effects of whatever you intake or activities you carry out to keep it fit. In case of fitness, the specified exercises, diets, routines, medical history and other factors demand close attention. Only lifting weights or just simply sweating with machines like a crazy bull won’t fetch the results which you might have expected. There are some common errors which discourage many fitness nuts to continue with their fitness schedule. Everyone knows we need to eat before our body allows us to lift weights, but there is more this that matters. Here are some of the fitness mistakes you should avoid.   

Bad diet, ignoring right nutrients
No matter what you eat, if your body isn’t getting what it needs to fuel the muscles, it brings down your chances of getting really satisfactory results. Carbohydrates and proteins are most required when you are going through intense workouts. For instance, if you don’t pay attention to post workout foods, then it’ll rather backfire you. For proper re-growth and repair of muscle-tissues, make sure you never miss the exact nutrients your body demands. You need to include lean meats, fruits and vegetables and avoid fast foods. People make a mistake by choosing soda and juices over water. That’s no good. Nothing can deliver what a plenty of water can.
Imbalances or single exercise routine
Another big mistake that you should avoid is to ignore versatility and routine shuffling of different exercises for different muscles of the body. It’s very common that people stick to a couple of routine workouts such as running and weight lifting. It’ll work on a few targeted muscles, but what about the rest of the body where "you’ll gain fats". Asymmetrical shape isn’t desirable, is it? It’s a mistake to underestimate one exercise over other.  Therefore, create more than one workout routine for all the different muscle groups of your body.  For instance, focusing only on cardiovascular exercise will burn calories, but for a proportional body shape, you must do core-conditioning exercises. It’ll help you strengthen muscles in pelvis, hips, back and abdomen along with improving your posture and flexibility of body.
Don’t overdo it too soon
The very first day you enter the gym isn’t the judgment day. People expect too much in a very short period of time and set impractical targets. In this quest, they put extra pressure on muscles and body metabolism for which they aren’t quite ready. Your body needs some conditioning and warm-ups first. Starting with heavy weights or running impractical number on treadmill on the very first day would be a great mistake. Give your body muscles time to gain strength and your metabolism adapt to the new, raised fuel demand.
Pre workout and post workout meals
Healthy pre workout meals are must-have before you enter the gym, it's important that your body isn’t deficient of nutrients, and same way, make sure you don’t ignore an energizing post workout meal. Post workout meal is often ignored, which results in unproductive workouts. Body needs proteins and carbohydrates after intense workout to reinforce the muscle-tissues. Banana shakes, natural energy drinks, juices, eggs, tuna, fruits, dry fruits and nuts are some of the best examples of post workout diet.
Starting with Supplements
Supplements are considered the shortcut if you are upto bodybuilding. However, it’s not advisable to use supplements till you reach the peak of your natural muscle growth through routine workouts. You won’t get any additional benefit if you began to take supplements on your very first day. Giver you body time to grow to its full potential naturally. 

Sticking to machines only
Machines are definitely programmed aids to become fit and build body mass. However, if you only stick to machines and ignore free weight exercises, it might imbalance your progress. You need to introduce free weight exercises to recruit more muscle fibers and stabilize muscles that enable your body to perform the movements in more effective way, producing overall muscular strength. For instance, there are a lot of options with a simple set of dumbbells. Running and Yoga would also make good options.
Dieting without exercise
It’s obvious that your diet decides the intake of fats. Dieting is a part of "losing weight". However, without exercise, it’s very hard to keep that weight loss permanent. You need to burn calories. Weight loss is about muscle tissue and the key to keep weight off once you have reached your goal is exercise. So, don’t make a mistake of relying only on dieting. Shed some sweat in the gym too.
Ignoring gym instructions and doctor
Any imperfection or malfunctioning of any part or muscle in your body will set limits to what workout is healthy for you. Also, the lack of knowledge while attacking the gym machines with temporary enthusiasm to get into perfect shape does a great harm to new comers. Beginning with the right workout and gradually passing on to the higher levels is one of the basic instructions of any fitness program. 
Secondly, do consult your doctor and get yourself properly checked before you opt for any fitness routine. Mind your symptoms like dizziness, improper breathing, and pains in muscles. It could be deadly in some cases, especially when the newcomer is an aged person. Do not ignore your chronic pains and injuries.
Pay attention to what a gym instructor has to say in order to avoid mishaps and injuries with machines. For instance, most common cause of injuries in gyms is dropping dumbbells or weights improperly. In addition, it’s a mistake to work with a machine about which you don’t have sufficient knowledge.

Monday, 26 August 2013

Yoga can Help You Gain Muscle

To gain muscle, joining a gym isn’t the only way out; however, it may be considered an essential step by professionals. Common folks like you and me too aspire to have body some symmetry, muscularity, and conditioning as well.

Whether it is professionals or common people, Yoga can be used as an effective way of building muscles with endurance, flexibility and strength. Yoga isn’t just about some positions which stretch your muscles through grotesque postures; it is a whole world of natural fitness of which muscle building is just a part. Different Yoga postures focus on gaining mass to a specific muscle of the body. For instance, a warrior pose targets muscles in the legs.
Gyms of the western world are flooding with DVD’s, books and special Yoga trainers since it gained popularity in 80s. Yoga has proven to be much more than a bunch of guys taking to light exercise and babbling about spirituality.

How Yoga builds muscles?
Through specific Yoga stretches, you can cut the time you spent on lifting weights and sweating with similar popular practices you follow to build muscle. The fact that Yoga can help develop your body muscles isn’t a conjectural theory anymore. It’s a proven fact.  Some poses of Yoga require a lot of strength and endurance.

Yoga has some specific stretches to help you develop high isometric muscle endurance. These poses are held for longer durations and equal a lot of workout. As a professional bodybuilder, Yoga improves your posing endurance and ability with creativity.

Then, there are some Yoga poses that ask you to lift your own body weight and position your body to work your muscles.

Specific Yoga poses to build muscles

Tree Pose
In this pose, the entire body weight is balanced on a single foot, which requires significant strength to control the muscles. Through it, you’ll gain muscles of that specific leg. In this pose one needs to stand straight on the left leg and bend the right leg, and then put the right foot on the inner left thigh. In a correct pose, the right knee points to the right with your hands together above your head.

Warrior I Pose
Warrior I Pose is another effective pose to gain muscles on the legs. In this pose, jump the feet apart, one towards front and one towards backside. Bring the back foot at 45-degrees, and extend your front leg with front foot those points straight ahead. Hold the position while you lift through the core.  Other poses like Warrior II and III are also recommendable to build leg muscles.

Shoulder Stand
Work on lean muscle with Shoulder stand. It requires you to lay flat on the back and inhale. Then, raise both legs straight up without leaving space between them and exhale. The head, neck, shoulders and upper arms holds the weight of the body. The breathing must be gentle while this posture is held. It will build muscles around your back and arm muscles.
However, avoid this pose in case you have been diagnosed with disorders such as osteoporosis or arthritis.

Cobra Pose
The specific stretch strengthens the back muscles along with toning glutes. To perform it, lift the chest, pelvis and belly off the surface while lying on your stomach. It forces a stretch in your shoulders, chest, and abs.

Triangle Pose
Triangle Pose is another pose that strengthens and build muscle mass in the legs, targets lean hip-muscle, and develops the abs. The stretch requires the individual to spread apart the feet between three to four feet sideways. The left foot should point forward while the right foot and the knee are turned outward.  Raise the arms straight to the sides to the shoulder height. Extend the body over the right leg and place the right hand on the floor, and exhale while you lean to the right. Left arm goes overhead and look up toward your hand.

Plank Pose and Side Plank Pose
Through performing Plank pose, you can work on the wrist, arms, spine and also tighten the abdominal muscles, while the side plank pose helps you gain muscle in the core and legs.
Another effective pose to tone the buttocks and strengthen the arms and wrists are Upward-Facing Dog. For building muscles in both the arms and legs, Downward-Facing Dog is recommended by trainers.

Handstand and Supported Headstand
Handstand is tough stretch to perform. You need to rest your feet against the wall without losing the alignment with the hips. It’s only when you build enough arm strength that you can let the wall support your legs in a full handstand. On finer level, you must perform this pose unsupported. It elongates your abdomen; strengthen the arms, wrists, shoulders.

Author Bio
I’m Mike a Health& Fitness Consultant having 5+ years of experience working in clinics, gyms and also Yoga instructor dealing with health, pain and injuries. I provide professional assistance and advice on health issues currently associated with

Monday, 12 August 2013

Post Workout Foods You Should Stock up on

Post workout meals mean the same as reinforcement, ammo, and first aid mean for a soldier in the battlefield. It’s a lethal habit not to have post workout meals. In a 30 minute of exercise session, your body burns a lot of calories and muscle-tissues ask for repair. If your workout is hard, but the post workout meal is missing, you are rather "damaging your muscles". Also, if you are late in consuming your meal, you body would not be able to suck up most of it. The deadline gap is 20-50 minutes.  Most of the post workout foods are combinations of varying doses of protein, carbohydrates, and liquids. Sports nutritionists suggest high combo of protein in carbohydrates through a meal that is easily and quickly digestible so that your muscles get instant energy. Here are some of the most suggested meals for a post workout menu.  

Protein Shake with Banana
Bananas restore the levels of glycogen in your body. Glycogen is responsible for "rebuilding muscles" damaged during workout. In terms of food, you need high dose of carbohydrates; the source of glycogen. Bananas are a quick source of carbohydrates. Protein shake with bananas will be a great diet in a quick window between workout sessions. Bananas also supply potassium, which is the electrolyte responsible for maintaining muscle contractions.   

Duck for quick recovery
Duck can come for a quick recovery after a post workout session.  An average breast has little fats and approximately 30g of protein. It’s also a quick supplier of vitamin K through its coriander, anti-inflammatory amino acid glutamine in its cabbage and cholesterol-lowering alfalfa.
Hummus on a whole-grain pita
As a common and important suggestion regarding the post workout meals would be to substitute meat for alternatives from time to time. In that case, Hummus is best alternative to meat.  Have it with whole-grain pita and it’ll turn out to be a good source of protein-carbohydrate combo. Carbohydrates from pita are released slowly and gradually, which maintain energy levels during the workout.
Chocolate milk
This is perhaps the most delicious, therefore most favored, post workout energy drink. But, we aren’t talking about the common and basic choco-milk. Rather, it must be low in fats. Fats are never advisable in post workout meals. Protein-fortified and preformulated chocolate milk is the right fuel. It gives you about 48 grams of carbohydrates and 20 grams of protein; a perfect ratio of carbohydrates and protein. The best thing about it is that it comes in flavors.

Orange Juice
Instead of running after popular energy drink cans available in the stores, grab a big glass of Orange juice. It literally juices you up, really! It aids muscle contraction with a high dose of potassium in addition to vitamin C. Potassium restore its fluid levels in your body.
Spinach and egg
‘Popeye the Sailor’ wasn’t wrong about spinach.  It’s one of the most alkaline foods which supply "iron and phytoecdysteroids" for faster muscle growth. Post workout drinks are mostly about right combination of carbohydrates and protein. A spinach omelet is a good example of it.  An egg has about 6.3 grams of protein and also contains Vitamin D. Egg protein is readily utilizable and carries the highest biological value among foods.  Have some egg whites and make yourself a spinach omelet. You muscles need re-growth.
Skim milk and cereal
Replace your popular sports drink with a grain cereals and milk. It’ll give you a far better supply of protein, carbohydrates and vitamins with additionally available minerals with it. In a short rest session, it will prove to be one of the quickest fuels to digest.
As a combination of heart -healthy omega-3 fatty acids and low fats, tuna makes a good option for a post workout meal. It’s easy to prepare and a tuna salad has the required amount of anti-oxidant. It’ll help you reduce muscle soreness and if you could add some yellow pepper for some vitamin C, then it’ll improve your blood flow by strengthening your blood vessels. Salmon, mashed potatoes and salad can also fetch you high dose of protein and anti-inflammatory omega-3’s to help rebuild your muscles.

Dried fruits and nuts
If you don’t have enough time to manage a healthy meal routine after exercise, then carry a lot of dried fruits, nuts and fruits. Dried foods give you carbohydrates, while nuts are rich in protein with healthy fats. This is perhaps the handiest way to maintain regular supply of fuel when you don’t have enough time to grab a proper cooked omelet or fry a tuna.
Choosing the right post-workout foods can go a long way in helping you achieve your fitness goals. Make sure you choose the right ones.

Monday, 5 August 2013

6 Herbs for Joint Pain Relief

Joint pain and aches are not only bound to age, but they can also be triggered with different health problems such as arthritis, lumps and other chronic problems. Some people can find relief from pain killer and other kinds of anti-inflammatory medicines, but most of these (baring few exceptions) medicines tend to have an ill effect on the body in the long run. Read on to find herbal remedies for joint pain, which if adopted, can provide satisfactory results in the long run

In contrast to medicines, using natural ingredients to "cure pain and stiffness" in the joint can be really helpful (without any harmful side effects). Of course clinically proven products with a mixture of organic and chemical ingredients too can be effective but having some information on herbs can go a long way in choosing the right supplement or treatment.
Herbs, healthy diet and exercising can be three great ways to relieve people from joint pain. We have listed below some finest herbs that can really help in joint pain relief.

     1.    Ginger
Being an anti-inflammatory herb, ginger is widely used in Ayurvedic medicines, manufactured in many parts of the world today. Ginger comprises of zingibain - an anti-inflammatory enzyme, and has been tested as a great herb for decreasing pain and inflammation caused in the joints by painful medical conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and/or osteoarthritis. 

       2.    Cayenne
Cayenne is another herb that helps in relieving patients from mild to excruciating joint pains. Cayenne pepper is a blood circulatory stimulant – it regulates blood flow and makes the arteries strong. Cayenne also contains pain relieving substances that helps counter the problems of joint pains.

       3.    Boswellia
Found majorly in China and India, Boswellia is one of the finest herbs for the treatment of joint pains. Boswellia can be used as cream or it can be taken orally; it basically reduces inflammation in the joints and helps in preventing the degeneration of connective tissues which can cause pain in the joints. 

     4.    Gotu Kola
Gotu Kola has been in use for repair of connective tissues since time immemorial. Along with the ability to prevent degeneration of connective tissues, Gotu Kola also works as an "anti-inflammatory herb". It also helps in strengthening collagen in the body joints which allows it to improve the joints’ responsiveness to stress, thereby eliminating the possibility of painful sensations.

      5.    Flaxseed
Flaxseed is one of the finest natural sources of Omega-3 fatty acids, the fatty acids responsible for a "strong immune system", capable of fighting back numerous bacteria and infections. Omega-3 also helps with its anti-inflammatory properties, which makes it a really good herb for joint pain relief.

     6.    Nettle leaf
Ever since we have known Nettle leaf, it has been used in Ayurvedic treatment of Arthritis. Nettle leaf helps in blocking the degeneration of connective tissues and cartilages. Nettle leave extracts have positive effects on the treatment of rheumatic or osteoarthritis.