5 Habits to Lose Fat While Gaining Muscle

Is there an effective way to lose weight while gaining lean muscle? Reducing fat means consuming fewer calories than you’re burning. Dropping pounds mean that you might lean muscle together with fatty deoposits. You need to be smart in terms of losing weight since you need lean muscle mass to perform physical activities like exercising.

It’s a fact that muscle burns more calories than fat, hence, having less muscle slows your metabolism as well. Once you lose that hard-earned muscle mass along with fat, it will become a bit more difficult to reduce weight the proper way. Don’t worry since there are ways to preserve lean muscle while you reduce weight.

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1.) Stimulate Your Muscles Through Working Out

Working out will definitely maintain your muscle mass, but you need to be consistent so your body will continue to build it and make it firmer. So, if you’re on a low-calorie diet but you’re not doing resistance training then you might add more fat than muscle. According to a 2015 Harvard study, lifting weights is a better fat-reducing technique compared to cardio exercises.

Your Muscle-Building Fix: You don’t need to lift weights on a daily basis. Reserve two intense weight-lifting session that will incorporate whole body movements such a squats and deadlifts. Determine how much you can lift so you can gauge the volume of reps per set.

2.) Consume the Right Amount of Calories

Once your body enters a starvation mode, you won’t be able to gain and sustain muscle mass and can add fat in the process. Eating an ample amount of calories will help maintain your metabolic rates. In a nutshell, you need enough energy not to go in starvation mode in order to perform physical activities.

Your Muscle-Building Fix: We recommend that you consume around 500-1,000 calories from your current daily intake. This will help you maximize muscle-building while losing fat. Keep in mind to keep your daily calories intake about half your daily need and half for your exercise activity.

3.) Minimise your Cardio Exercises

Do you think spending an hour on the treadmill or elliptical for an hour will only make you reduce fat? Your hard-earned muscle might be compromised spending too much time on the treadmill. This is what makes weightlifting exercises very effective in building lean muscle mass since cardio doesn’t engage muscle fibers in movements.

Your Muscle-Building Fix: We’re not saying cardio exercises aren’t good, it’s a matter of doing in a moderate pace. Schedule low-intensity cardio exercises 2-3 days weekly, and then schedule high-intensity cardio intervals to shock your system and protect your muscle as well.

4.) Observe your Post-Workout Action Plan

A post-workout plan is equal weight loss action plan. So where do you start? After a grueling yet fulfilling at the gym, it’s important to refuel with the right food for your muscle fibers to recover. Aside from proper nutrition, you need ample sleep for your body to recover and build muscle overnight. Both aspects are important when it comes to the actual muscle-building process.

Your Muscle-Building Fix: Make sure to consume a high-quality protein meal after your workout. This will enable your body to replenish nutrients and send amino acids to your muscles. Also, keep in mind that you need 7-8 hours of sleep for your muscle to begin repairing itself and even building new ones as well.

5.) Load Up on Protein

One of the principles of weight loss isn’t only about how much you eat but what you eat as well. In a 2015 study, people went on a low-calorie diet for a month and those who consumed more protein decreased their body fat around 27 percent. It’s because the protein found in meats, eggs, and poultry which contain essential amino acids to build and sustain lean muscle mass.

Your Muscle-Building Fix: Consuming 1.6 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight will sustain your lean muscle gains. The idea here is to spread out your protein throughout the day and include in each meal.

 

Let’s get started towards your muscle-building and fitness goals. The Naked Truth Fitness Team have more than 40 years experience personally training clients and would be more than glad to talk to you about your fitness goals. For an obligation free chat, Click here to know more.

How to Activate your Weight Loss Hormones

Taking advantage of female hormones have shown that it may support your fitness and nutrition goals. You might blame your intense period cravings on your hormones but they’re helping in terms of muscle-building and metabolic processes.

Women have always felt vulnerable to hormonal cravings and sluggish metabolism due to stress and period. It’s a good thing that science is now discovering how female hormones are related to weight loss and increased metabolism.

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In this post, we will be sharing tips on how to activate these hormones to support weight-loss and revving up metabolism. Here are 4 ways to turn on your hormones to reduce weight and unwanted fat.

1.) Discover the Staying Power of Protein-Packed Meals

Did you know that you have hormones that slow down the movement of food through your GI tract? This is called cholecystokinin which are released by your intestines whenever you eat. It’s a glucagon-like peptide 1 and peptide YY that helps in gradual digestion of food intake. The big idea here is that slow-moving food makes you fuller after a meal.

Your Hormone-Activating Trick: Integrate protein, healthy fats, and complex carbs for every meal. How do you make your meal feel you fuller? Consume around 20 to 25 grams of protein in each meal. High-protein meals increases these satiating hormones, but make sure to add some fiber from complex carbs and some veggies that contain healthy fats.

2.) Curbing Your Cravings

There’s a hormone that decreases your appetite called leptin. It’s also called the feel-full hormone or satiety which is released from your body’s fat cells once it is activated from your brain’s hypothalamus. High levels of the feel-full hormone can lead to leptin resistance since the more fat you have then the more leptin your body will produce. Most women have low levels of leptin which is making them super hungry.

Your Hormone-Activating Trick: People with sleeping disorders such as sleep apnea and insomnia are struggling with weigh loss. Why? Sleep deprivation directly affects leptin secretion. To optimize your leptin levels, women should get around 7-9 hours of sleep per night. Manage your sleep habits to leverage on your leptin levels.

3.) Engage in Fat-Burning and Muscle-Building Exercise

The more lean muscle that you have then the more calories you burn even if you’re not doing any physical activity. How’s that possible? Your testosterone levels are at work even if you have a little of them. It’s a common notion that men have tons of testosterone but women have their share of it as well. It’s our body’s primary muscle-building hormones and you need to turn it on to lose weight

Your Hormone-Activating Trick: Weightlifting movements is an effective way to promote the release of testosterone. Performing compound movements such as pullups and squats will use more muscle fiber which will trigger the release of fat-burning testosterone.

4.) Support Your Thyroid

Our thyroid gland secretes a variety of thyroid hormones including T3 and T4. These hormones manage how many calories you burn by just being in a stationary position. Autoimmune diseases are the cause of thyroid hormone levels, and even healthy women experience a drop in thyroid hormones which result to reduced metabolic rates.

Your Hormone-Activating Trick: Iodine deficiency is the cause of thyroid malfunction. This means that you need to load up with iodine-rich food such as tune and cod. Seaweed is also a good source of iodine. If you take a close look, these can be included as a source of protein and fiber respectively

Do you want to learn more about creating a diet plan or an exercise routine that will boost your metabolism? Let’s get started towards your fitness goals. Chad of the TNT Fitness team would be more than glad to talk to you about your personalised diet plan. Click here to know more.

5 Important Questions to Ask Before Enrolling with a Personal Trainer

Lisa recently relocated because of a better job opportunity. It’s a new challenge for her but also a great opportunity to enhance her career. She’s busy at work throughout the day, and around 5 pm she usually prepares herself for her resistance training at the gym. But wait, she just relocated and needs to find a new fitness center.

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Whether you’re a newbie or a regular, choosing a gym to enroll at is quite tough. You can easily get distracted by the new gym environment and ambiance before you enroll. Sales reps from a gym’s marketing team can also entice you to enroll in an instant. These are the issues that you’ll encounter once you enroll in a new gym. On top of things, it’s important to ask a personal trainer a few questions before you enroll and get his services.

Here are 5 important questions you need to ask before hiring a personal trainer:

1.) Are You Offering a Free Trial Workout?

Personal trainers who reach out to you and offer free trial workouts either want to help you reach your fitness goals or simply want to add you on their long client list. It makes a free trial workout worth your time since you can gauge a personal trainer if he or she is worth your money.  It can take a week or two to determine if the personal trainer’s approach is for you. Just keep in mind that free trial workout is a step forward in attaining your fitness goals.

2.) Will You Provide a Diet Program?

One of the reasons why people hire a personal trainer is to start a weight loss program. Weight loss happens in the kitchen and not in the gym floor. Exercises routines, cardio workouts, and group classes simply help you tone your muscles and improve your physique. So, if ever your personal trainer knows his way around meal planning, then it’s a bonus for you. Not all nutritionists are personal trainers, but there are some personal trainers that have received certification for them to assist you with your diet plan.

3.) What Difference Does It Make if I Hire a Personal Trainer Instead of Joining a Group Class?

This question is a follow-up question to “What fitness goals do I want to achieve?” so it’s a common issue whether you hire a personal trainer to work on your goals or group classes should do it for you. The greatest benefit you’ll receive once you hire a personal trainer? Focus. The personal trainer will concentrate on your fitness needs in different aspects such as nutrition and training. A group class is also a good thing but it’s a mere supplement to your custom-tailored workout from your personal trainer.

4.) Will I Reach My Fitness Goals Without a Personal Trainer?

Buying yourself a gym membership is an investment. If you think you can achieve your fitness goals by yourself at home, you wouldn’t have entertained the idea of joining a gym or even getting a personal trainer. It’s important that you know what are the premium features of your membership such as relevant gym equipment that will complement your goal. If you are looking to do circuit training but there isn’t ample space and yet a personal trainer tells you he can help you, then he’s just tickling your ears to buy a personal training package.

5.) Are You a Certified Personal Trainer?

It’s important to check if your personal trainer has the license and relevant credentials for you to hire him. You don’t need to be formal, a casual approach to ask this question will make way for both of you to get acquainted. It’s always great to know if your personal trainer is a member of the Australian Strength and Conditioning Association, or studied in a school like the ACPE Academy (Australian College of Physical Education).  It also helps to check his previous client’s testimonials as well. With this in mind, you’ll be able to decide after you avail of your free trial workout sessions.

Are you already thinking to hire a personal trainer right now? Let’s get started towards your fitness goals. Chad would be more than glad to talk to you about your fitness goals. Click here to know more.

3 Fitness Essentials for Women in Their 30s and Above

Most women don’t really contemplate about hitting their mid-30s, let alone their health and fitness goals. Once you do a reality check, growing older is an aspect which we can simply yield and follow. It’s like a current in a fast rushing stream. Before you know it, you’re past your 30s and you’ve already hit the 40-year mark.

Let’s be lenient though, 35 isn’t really considered as middle age. However, you’ll start noticing that your body will not be the same as when you were in your 20s. You’ll put on weight more easily, and not to mention, you don’t feel as energetic as before.

Worry not, there are more ways than not to cling on to your youth. You just need to invest a lot of smart effort to stay physically, emotionally, and mentally fit. Being young and fit is all about looking good and feeling great at the same time, right?

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Here are 3 fitness mindset essentials for women 35 and up:

1.) Eat Smart

It’s a fact that as we grow older, our bodies require fewer calories to function properly. Hence, when you continue binge eating the way you did back in your 20s then expect to gain some weight in unwanted places. So, don’t be surprised if suddenly you’ve put on a couple of kilos in a months’ time even if you haven’t customised your diet plan. It’s natural for everyone to notice their body reacting to the aging process. There’s no quick fix for this, the only practical approach would be to consume a diet with more nutrients and minimise eating just for the sake of eating.

2.) Adjust Training Intensity

Your fitness mindset hasn’t changed but your body is slower compared to to when you were in your 20s. It’s a must to do yourself and your body a favour by toning down the intensity of exercise routines. This will enable you to prevent injuries while you still enjoy doing your favourite exercise. Keep in mind that your bone density decreases which can make you more prone to early arthritis. The solution? Invest in strength training routines while minimising high impact activities to build greater bone density.

3.) Prevent Ailments

Keeping yourself healthy and fit is easier said than done. You need to walk the talk and focus on your health in every aspect. Regular exercise routines and a balanced diet will complement your health. However, you also need to have yourself screened regularly for gynecological disorders and breast cancer for prevention. It’s also advisable to give up vices such as drinking and smoking which can increase your stress levels. Remember that prevention and monitoring is always key to avoiding unwanted illnesses.

Let’s get started towards your fitness goals. The Naked Truth Fitness Team have more than 40 years experience personally training clients and would be more than glad to talk to you about your fitness goals. For an obligation free chat, Click here to know more.

5 Simple Ways to Boost your Metabolism

Nature works in different ways. This goes the same for every person’s body and metabolism. Each of us vary in terms of metabolic rates since we do different types of work, some would be glued to their office chair most of the time and some would be doing more labourous work.

So why do some people easily gain weight and others have a difficult time gaining some?

Metabolism is our body’s own “personal trainer. It’s a process that works naturally to support you in shedding unwanted fat and burning calories. Enzymes in your cells break down food then convert it into energy. This enables your heart to keep on beating, your mind to thinking whenever you’re at work, or even when you engage in a group exercise class.

The idea here is that metabolism is a subjective matter. The faster a person’s metabolism works then the more she can burn those calories. It also means that the more you burn then the easier it is to shed those kilos off.

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Here are 5 simple yet effective ways to improve your metabolism:

1.) Start your Day with a Hearty Breakfast

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. The big idea here though is the quality and quantity of your food in the morning. Always keep in mind that a hearty breakfast is better since it will make you full for hours and prevent you hop on starvation mode.

A combination of lean protein coupled with complex carbohydrates and healthy fats is what works best. The old reliable would be hard-boiled eggs and cup of oatmeal. You can also add some berries and a teaspoon of omega-3 fish oil. Remember to consume a quantity that will make you full for the next few hours even before thinking about lunch.

2.) Remember Fiber

It’s a best practice to include vegetables and fruits in your daily diet. This will enable your body to flush out toxins more easily. The idea here is that consuming organic fruits and veggies are considered more effective since they are grown without pesticides. These chemicals block your thyroid function. Your thyroid is your body’s personal thermostat and gauges how fast your metabolism runs. Whether it’s organic produce or not, it is a must to have your greens during lunch and some fruits to complement your breakfast.

3.) Strength Training

Did you know that muscle weighs more than fat which means it uses more energy as well? Most women in their 30s and 40s tend to increase their resting metabolism by 100 calories per day through strength training. This can be achieved spending 40 minutes twice a week for 3-4 months. The great thing about training twice weekly? It keeps your thermostat running at an ideal rate even if you don’t visit the gym daily.

4.) Make Calories Work for You

It’s a fact that if you trim those calories in your diet plan, it will deliberately affect your metabolism. The body’s metabolic process will think that times are lean and puts a hold on fat-burning to conserve energy. The solution would be to eat enough calories at least to match your resting metabolic rate. It’s a tricky situation but keep in mind that eating the right food, which give you sufficient calories is key to making those calories work for you.

5.) Protein First

Do you even wonder why your personal trainer promotes a protein-packed diet for you? It’s because your body digests protein more slowly compared to carbohydrates. A high-protein meal also boosts your metabolism. During thermogenesis, your body uses around 10% of its calorie intake for digestion, which means it takes longer to burn protein than fat or carbs. With this in mind, your body tends to expend more energy-absorbing nutrients in a high-protein diet.

 

Do you want to learn more about creating a diet plan or a exercise routine that will boost your metabolism? Let’s get started towards your fitness goals. The Team at The Naked Truth Fitness would be more than happy to talk to you about your personalised eating plan. Click here to know more.

5 Benefits of Joining Group Exercise Classes

It’s a norm that when you hit the gym for the first time, you are somewhat unsure on where to start. Some people encounter a difficult time doing an exercise or using a machine, some don’t know the proper form of an exercise, and other would simply spend time on the treadmill while browsing on their phones.

If you’re new to the gym or you just don’t know where to start once you hit the floor, introducing yourself to group exercise classes could be the quick fix for you. While there’s always an option to hire a trainer to teach you or tag a friend along to support each other, joining a group class will be a good start for your fitness goals.

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Here are 5 benefits that you will get once you join a group exercise class:

1.) Group Classes Mean Fun

It’s a given that there’s a social factor when you join a group class. It’s one of the most exciting and enjoyable approach to do exercises. Whether it’s a Bootcamp class, High Intensity, Zumba or a group spinning session, you’ll have fun with other gym members who are motivated to reach their fitness goals but want to enjoy their stay at the gym as well. Now let’s turn on some upbeat music!

2.) Exercising with a Group Motivates You More

As we mentioned earlier, group classes should be fun, and a bonus is that you have the opportunity to surround yourself with like-minded individuals who have fitness goals as well. It’s true teamwork at play – an enthusiastic instructor and group class buddies support each other during their routine. Joining a group class will bring the best out of you and complement your gym mates as well.

3.) There’s a Variety of Exercise Classes

Several newbies in the gym tend to lose interest once they feel everything is routine. Joining a group fitness class will suck the boredom out of you in an instant. You can choose classes such as Pilates, HIIT, cardio kickboxing, and Zumba among others. Another advantage of joining a wide array of group classes is that you have the chance to work out several body parts while increasing your metabolism.

4.) An Instructor Guides You as a Group

Being part of a group exercise class allows everyone to learn from an expert instructor how to execute exercises properly. This is important specially for new gym members who want to feel at ease in doing certain routines with fellow newbies. As an instructor coaches you as a group, you can also share a tip or two to other newbies who would join the class soon.

5.) There’s a Standard Structure or Routine

Joining a group class doesn’t ask too much from a beginner. You can hop in and have a great workout without really thinking of a plan. Every class has an instructor that leads the way from warm-up phase, to the actual workout, and a cool-down session. The great thing about having an instructor throughout each group class is that you can ask questions about the advantages of doing such exercises.

 

TNT Fitness offers a group exercise class called the Ultimate Class. It is packed full of the best exercises to shed kilos and get you in the best shape of your life. Would like to learn more about the Ultimate Class? For more information or to register for women’s only bootcamp click here.

Busting 4 Common Myths of Strength Training for Women – PART 1

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In regards to strength training for women there are so many myths floating around it’s not even funny. These myths make it so hard for any woman to know exactly what to do when it comes to exercise, in particular strength training, to get the best results. This is when confusion and disappointment sets in, as their goals are not achieved.

In part 1 of myths of strength training for women we look at the following four topics:

•    Strength training will make you bulk up
•    High repetitions, low weight will work
•    Strength training for women should be different to men
•    You can spot reduce fat

There is a lot of information out their which is not fact at all and leads women in all sorts of directions. Here, we answer all those myths to set you back on track. Strength training is actually pretty straight forward if you know the research backed facts about strength training and get rid of all the false information.

Myth 1: Strength training will make you bulk up
We hear this time and time again; no you will not bulk up and become the muscly hulk that you think weight or strength training will cause you to become. There are specific reasons why females cannot do this and if they are, then they must be taking something to cause them to look that way, it is just not a natural phenomenon amongst females.

So, why is it that females cannot bulk up like our male counterparts? Well, females do not have the testosterone levels that males do. Sometimes, males do not even have the amount of testosterone needed to develop that hulk looking physique we know you are all thinking about.

Testosterone is the male sex hormone responsible for the increase in muscle size and mass in males and as females we only have the smallest amount of this hormone. The female sex hormone is estrogen, which we have heightened levels of and controls the feminine aspects of our bodies, which ensures a lean and toned physique rather than excessively large muscles. Yes we will get strong, but not big!

Lightweights induce muscular endurance where as heavy weights will induce muscular strength, which causes your muscles to get stronger and not necessarily bigger. The stronger your muscles, the higher your metabolism and thus the more calories they will burn. The fat layered on top of your muscles will be burned and reveal your muscles to give you that ‘toned’ look. A pound of muscle tissue takes up less room in your body than a pound of fat tissue does, an of course it is more metabolically active (think calorie furnace) than fat too!

Remember ladies; strength training is great for that lean toned look and you will definitely not become bulky and too muscly. All toned females will participate in some form of strength training to allow their bodies to develop that way. If you too want to get lean and toned, start strength training today!

Myth 2: High repetitions, lightweights will work



Many ladies think that lifting heavy weights will not allow them to loose weight or body fat, rather light weights, low sets with high repetitions is what has been drilled into everyone. Even some personal trainers believe this, which according to research is not right.

By strength training with lightweights for high repetitions you are only training your muscles for endurance and not building your muscles up for strength. Strength is where the calories are burned, as you need more muscle to do so. Heavy weight for low repetitions with build new muscle tissue and increase strength.

Lifting heavy weights for lower repetitions and high sets is much better. As we have mentioned, heavy weights are what will build and develop your muscles to be stronger and more efficient. This means you will have greater muscle mass, higher metabolism, greater capacity for burning calories during and post workout and thus reduce body fat all at the same time. The leaner someone is, the higher their metabolism. Essentially, building and strengthening muscle is important for your metabolism, which will help regulate and manage your weight.

So change your ways and stop fretting about walking past the cardio section and into the weights room. Try to opt for heavy weights not light; unless you are training your muscle t endure something or a long period of time the lightweights are not doing you any good in achieving your weight and fat loss goals. Even if you are a little older, lifting heavy relative to the maximum amount of weight you can lift for one repetition will get you to where you need to be in regards to managing your weight. A little more muscle wont hurt; in fact it will keep you lean, strong and more able to participate in the things you love for longer as you get older! Not a bad reason to lift heavier than usual.
Myth 3: Strength training for women should be different to Men

Again, the answer is no. There is no reason as to why female’s strength training should be any different to males. That ladies, is a definite myth. Yes, we may not have the ability to lift as much in some cases but it does not mean the exercises we use to strengthen and build our muscles should be any different. Think lunges, squats, overhead presses, deadlifts, push-ups, pull-ups and many more. Men can do these and so can women. While males will quite possibly do these types of exercises to get bigger muscles, females can do them too but instead develop lean, dense, tight and toned muscles to get that look most females are looking for.

Again, those sex hormones testosterone and estrogen play a big role in how the male and female body responds to strength exercises. Yes there are women specific programs, but that is only to do with the small programing differences needed for women to get he best results more efficiently, not necessarily in the types of exercises.

It is all about the woman’s goals whilst training in the gym, doing heavy lifts may be appropriate for eth female involved and if it is the best way to achieve that goal then by all means she should lift heavy and utilise the same exercises that a man might. Its not about your sex or gender, it is about your goals.

Women have just as much of a right as men do to be in the weights rooms. Unfortunately it is common for men to dominate this area yet so many women can benefit from the effects of strength training. So, move over guys the ladies are coming through!

Myth 4: You can spot reduce fat

I am sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but unfortunately not ladies, spot reducing is impossible. Fat will deposit where it wants to deposit and all you can do is eat and exercise correctly and hope that the fat from those areas will be burnt, as fat storage around the body is genetically predisposed. Your genetics may be programed to store fat in certain areas first and thus when loosing fat, come off other areas first, say arms, then legs, them stomach, then chest and then your bottom. But everyone is different and this order of where fat is lost or gained first varies. No amount of targeted exercise will alter how your fat disappears.

What you can do to help yourself is eat well and strength train to increase muscular toning and reduce fat by recruiting lots of muscles and burning more calories.

Your diet and eating habits contribute 80 – 90% of your fat loss and thus focusing on what you are eating an when if an important factor. In combination with strength training you will see the best results.

By increasing your muscle mass you will have a leaner more toned looking physique in the particular areas you’re looking to target. With more muscle comes an increased metabolism, which will influence the burning of fat, which can aid in reducing whole body fat percentage, but not target specific areas. The best types of exercises to induce this effect are compound exercise. Compound exercises are those that utilise the whole body as they activate major muscle groups as well as the smaller stabilizing muscles.

Four common myths on strength training for women, BUSTED! Ditch the myths and follow the facts, and you should notice a difference in how your body responds. Make sure you read part two of myths of strength training for women answered to find out more on what other information you have been told that is not fact but fiction and ruining your success.

The Benefits of Exercise for Baby Boomers, Seniors and Retirees

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As we age, there are certain declines in bodily functions that occur, particularly to the female body. These changes cannot necessarily be stopped, however, we are able to prevent them from developing or occurring later rather than sooner. No, it is not through a pill or some form of medication.  It is through the power of healthful eating and regular exercise. Yes, exercise! Exercise can be just as powerful if not better than some medications in reducing or preventing the effects of certain health issues that develop as we age.

Many difficulties and chronic diseases, which develop as we age, are a result of inactivity or sedentary lifestyles. As a result your chronological age (numbered) may be 55 but your biological age (physical) may be 35 due to an active lifestyle and vice versa for a sedentary lifestyle.

Regular exercise should be an important factor in the lives of senior and retiree women over the age of 55. There a multitude of health benefits that result from participation in regular cardiovascular and strength based exercise.

Participating in physical activity has shown to help with reducing the symptoms of menopause, risk of heart disease, diabetes and osteoporosis just to name a few. We will go into more detail on these benefits in the following.

 

  1. Bone healthBone health is an important factor for females as they age as they are at an increased risk of developing osteoporosis.

Osteoporosis is a weakening of the bones due to decreased bone mineral density (BMD). BMD is the density of calcium and other minerals within the bones that keep them strong. A combination of reduced exercise, physical activity, dietary calcium intake and aging impacts the development of osteoporosis.

By undertaking weight bearing exercise such as walking and stair climbing over the lifespan and into older age you can increase or maintain your BMD to reduce your risk of developing osteoporosis.

  1. Muscular healthMuscular health pertains to the strength and endurance of the muscles which work in accordance with your nervous system and skeletal system within your body that allow movement and stability in everyday and leisure activities.

    Keeping your muscles strong means you are able to functionally complete daily tasks and leisure activities due to increases stability from your muscles. You are also able to maintain or increase your metabolism with increased muscle mass and strength and thus will reduce the risk of putting on weight if you maintain your healthy eating regime as you age.

  2. Cardiovascular healthCardiovascular health pertains to the function of your heart, blood, capillaries and blood vessels – veins and arteries – which work to pump blood and thus oxygen and nutrients around the body in order to function optimally in daily tasks, physical activity and exercise. It is also responsible for removing carbon dioxide and other waste products from the body.

    Cardiovascular disease such as coronary artery disease, atherosclerosis and heart valve dysfunction are leading causes of death as we age. A healthy cardiovascular system can reduce the risk of cardiac disease.

    Increased levels of physical activity and exercise can aid in reducing the risk of developing or dying from cardiac disease. Exercise enhances the function of your cardiac muscle (heart) plus increases blood flow to your heart and other muscles throughout the body.

  3. HypertensionHypertension is excessively high blood pressure, which places undue stress on your arteries as the blood struggles to pass through. It is characterized by a resting blood pressure of Systolic blood pressure (top number) greater than 140mm Hg and a diastolic blood pressure (bottom number) of greater than 90 mm Hg, taking anti hypertensive medications or being told by your GP on more than two occasions that you have high blood pressure (BP).

Regular exercise can aid in the reduction of high blood pressure over time. In individuals with hypertension aerobic exercise can lead to reductions in resting BP by 5 to 7 mm Hg. Aerobic exercise should be emphasized on most days of the week and supplemented by moderate intensity resistance training 2 – 3 days of the week.

  1. Metabolic diseaseMetabolic disease is the combination of multiple (at least three) health issues pertaining to cardiovascular disease risk factors. These include abdominal obesity, diabetes, hypertension, being female, high cholesterol and high blood triglycerides. Together these risk factors pose a greater risk to health than they do alone.

    Changes in nutritional intake in combination with moderate increases in physical activity and exercise can help to combat metabolic disease. This includes at least 30 minutes of moderate to intense physical activity on most days of the week.

  2. DiabetesType 1 diabetes is a result of autoimmune destruction and type 2diabetes is a result of excess body fat.

    Type 2 diabetes usually develops, as we get older and is characterized by an increased level of fasting glucose due to a deficiency in insulin secretion or inability to utilise insulin. Sustained elevated glucose levels places your body at risk of disease.

    In those with type 2 diabetes glucose levels can be controlled through regular exercise. Regular exercise can increase glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity and thus decrease insulin requirements.

    Those at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes can also reduce their risk of developing the disease through exercise participation. It is recommended that moderate intensity exercise be completed for at least 150 – 300 minutes a week in order to aid in reducing the risk of or controlling type 2 diabetes.

  3. FallsThe risk of having a fall or multiple falls can occur, as we get older due to a natural decrease in muscle mass and strength. Decreased hip, thigh and core strength can predispose an individual to increased falls risk.

As we age it is important we partake in regular exercise that works to increase the strength of our core, hips and thighs to maintain stability during everyday activities. Having strong muscles also allows us to quickly respond to certain actions such a slips and trips, which we would usually respond to automatically.

  1. StrokeStroke can occur as a result of a blockage or hemorrhage in the brain stopping blood flow to the brain tissues and thus limiting bodily function.

    Eighty percent of strokes are preventable and are caused by lifestyle factors such as exercise, diet, and blood pressure. Exercise can help to prevent stroke as well as aid stroke survivors. Moderate aerobic exercise such as walking is recommended and can reduce the risk of women having a stroke by 20 percent.

  2. ArthritisOsteoarthritis is a common occurrence as we age due to degradation of the cartilage between the joints causing swelling, inflammation and pain.

    Exercise can reduce the symptoms of arthritis by increasing mobility and strength in and around the joints.

    Regular balanced exercise is important for those with arthritis and should engage in various types of exercise such as strength, aerobic and mobility training. Activities such as swimming, water aerobics, walking, strength training and tai chi are effective low impact forms of exercise.

  3. Mental HealthAnxiety and depression will impact most people at some point in their lives and as we age this becomes more apparent. Exercise can be an effective form of therapy for these mental health issues and improve your mood and mental fitness.

    Regular moderate to vigorous aerobic exercise such as walking or jogging can reduce tension, elevate and stabilize mood, improve sleep patterns as well as self-esteem. As little as five minutes can stimulate anti-anxiety effects.

A variety of different types of exercises should be completed on a regular basis. This includes aerobic exercise, strength training and stretching. Each type of exercise has an important role in maintaining and improving optimal function of your body as you age.

Aerobic exercise

Aerobic exercise encompasses activities such as walking, jogging, swimming, cycling, stair climbing and even dancing, gardening and housework. This type of exercise works to improve the function of your cardiovascular system, which includes your heart, blood and blood vessels – arteries and veins – that together keep blood and thus oxygen pumping around your body!

Strength training

Strength training encompasses lifting free weights, machine weights or utilizing your body weight to improve your strength and posture in addition to improving bone strength and reduces the risk of injury. It is best to try target multiple muscles within the body in order to strengthen the whole body.

Stretching

Stretching encompasses exercises such as yoga and Pilates, which move through the joints range of motion and work to improve range of motion (ROM) and flexibility. Completing this type of exercise helps to reduce injury and soreness.

It is important to note that these health benefits as a result of regular exercise are integral to a long and healthy lifespan. Late life exercise has been accepted to have positive benefits for strength, aerobic fitness and ROM/flexibility. The next few articles we provide you with will go into more depth on how regular exercise is essential for particular benefits for senior and retiree women over the age of 55 as they age, in order to have a full and happy life.

Resources:

  1. ACSM’s Introduction to Exercise Science, Jeffery A. Potteiger, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2011
  2. ACSM’s Guidelines for Exercise Testing and Prescription Eighth Ed., Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2010
  3. Health Promotion for Older Women: Benefits of Nutrition and Exercise Programs, Ronni Chernoff, Et Al, Vol 18, No. 1, Sept 2002

Fitting Fitness and Exercise Into a Very Busy Schedule

too-busy-to-exercise

 

You have a million appointments and things to do. You feel as if you can’t possibly fit any more into the day than you are already. You work hard to stay organized and to get things done, but yet you know that you need to make fitness a priority. So how do you do it? How do you try to squeeze in exercise time when you can barely tell what end is up? How can you make fitness a priority when you have so many other things to do?

The reality of the situation is that you must make this a habit. This is about lifestyle change and that means that this becomes an inherent part of your life, not just a short term solution to fix a problem such as weight loss. You have to change the way that you view exercise first if you want to get it to become an important part of your life. Once you enjoy it and look at it as a positive thing rather than a chore, you will get a lot further.

You might feel like between work commitments, family and social events you simply have no time for exercising, but you might be surprised at how easy this transition can be. The more prepared you are to take on this task, the easier it will become. Try to focus on the positive outcomes rather than making this about a chore. If you can get to that point and really start to see results in terms of better health, a changing body, and reaching your goals then you will be much more likely to stick with it.

As you work to embrace fitness and make it a pivotal part of your life, here are some effective ways to do so. It may not be as hard as you might think, and in the end you are in charge of creating a fitness routine that works well for you and gets you to where you want to be.

  • Schedule your workouts like any other appointments: If you make this an appointment like any other, then you are going to stick to it. You probably aren’t in the habit of skipping doctor’s appointment or client meetings, and so if you approach this as another appointment you are not going to skip it. This is on the calendar and this is something you are committed to and then the rest will follow until you hit the gym without ever giving it a second thought.

 

  • Consider getting in exercise time early in the morning or late at night: Throughout the course of your day you likely handle a lot at work and a lot at home—and therefore you may need to extend your day a bit. Consider waking up an hour early or stay up an hour later to get the workout in. Never cut yourself short on sleep but perhaps give up something else so that you can get in a workout a few times a week. Most of us tend to think of this as prime time for relaxing, but a workout can give you so much more and it can make the most out of your day.

 

  • Try to squeeze in some activity throughout your day whenever possible: It may be that you take the stairs to move throughout your building rather than ride the elevator. It may be that you park further away from the building so that you are forced to get in some activity. Maybe you take a few small breaks throughout the day to help you to get in a power walk or even lift some weights if they are available to you. It’s quite amazing what a few minutes here and there throughout your day can help you to accomplish.

 

  • Set goals to help you to make this your new habit: If you know that you want to be to a certain weight or point in your life by a certain date, then set yourself up for this. Set goals to help pave the way towards what you are doing all of this for. Set short term and tangible goals to help you to stay focused, and then reward yourself when you reach them to stay motivated. This will help you to find time no matter what else you have going on, and you will love how inspired you feel to stick to the plan.

Accept this as your new norm and don’t let yourself waiver, even if times get tough. You will love how great you feel when exercise is an inherent part of your life. It may take some effort on your part to squeeze in the exercise, but it’s so worth it in the end. Stay focused, embrace this as a positive part of your life rather than a chore, and find the time necessary to make fitness a wonderful part of your health and well being.

If you’d like to talk to Chad about Learning how you can fit a simple, fast and effective exercise program into your lifestyle Click Here