Back Exercises- Basic Stretches Before Working Out

Before you work out it is VERY important that you stretch before.

WRIST EXTENSOR

Extend your right arm in front of you with your palm up and your elbow straight. Point your fingertips toward the floor by bending at the wrist. Using your left hand, pull the back of your right hand toward you gently. Hold for 20 seconds; repeat three to five times with each arm.

KNEES TO CHEST

Lie on your back. Bend your knees, and lift your feet off the floor. Grasp your knees with your arms and pull your knees toward your chest. Hold for 20 seconds. Repeat three to five times

TRICEPS STRETCH

Place your right hand behind your head, palm facing your head. With your left hand, grasp your right elbow and pull downward until you feel a stretch in the back of your right arm. Hold for 20 seconds; repeat three to five times with each arm.

CALF STRETCH

Face a solid structure such as a wall with your right foot ahead of your left, toes straight ahead. Bend your right knee, press your hips forward, and lean into the wall. Keep both heels down, your left leg straight, and your right knee over your ankle. Hold for 20 seconds; repeat three to five times with each leg.

All these stretches I have found helpful. Stretching is so easy-so why not just do it every time??

Not only is stretching great before and after a work out- it is great to wake up in the morning and just stretch in your bed to wake yourself up!

How to Diet – Whats So Great about Yoga?

I have always wanted to try Yoga. It looks fun and relaxing while offering your a great source of physical activity. I like it because any age group can participate.

Yoga has many styles, forms and intensities. Hatha yoga, in particular, may be a good choice for stress management. Hatha is one of the most common styles of yoga, and some beginners find it easier to practice because of its slower pace and easier movements. But most people can benefit from any style of yoga — it’s all about your personal preferences.

The core components of hatha yoga and most general yoga classes are:

  • Poses. Yoga poses, also called postures, are a series of movements designed to increase strength and flexibility. Poses range from lying on the floor while completely relaxed to difficult postures that may have you stretching your physical limits.
  • Breathing. Controlling your breathing is an important part of yoga. In yoga, breath signifies your vital energy. Yoga teaches that controlling your breathing can help you control your body and quiet your mind.

The health benefits of yoga

The potential health benefits of yoga are numerous and may include:

  • Stress reduction. With its quiet, precise movements, yoga draws your focus away from your busy, chaotic day and toward calm as you move your body through poses that require balance and concentration.
  • Increased fitness. As you learn and refine new poses, you may enjoy improved balance, flexibility, range of motion and strength. And this means you’re less likely to injure yourself in other physical endeavors or in your daily activities.
  • Management of chronic health conditions. Yoga might help with a variety of health conditions, such as cancer, depression, pain, anxiety and insomnia, by helping with sleep problems, fatigue and mood. Yoga also can help reduce heart rate and blood pressure.
  • Weight loss. If you’re overweight or have binge-eating disorder, yoga may help you make the healthy lifestyle changes necessary to gain control of your eating and drop those extra pounds.

This video gives you a quick lesson in Yoga.

If you are interested in taking yoga classes, learning more about Yoga techniques or its health benefits check out these sites.

Write it Down!

You may feel silly having a chart up in your house or a “fat” picture of yourself up on the fridge: but it helps. If you have a goal that you want to reach, write it down. Keep a journal that you record what you eat (calories,fat etc.) and how much physical activity you do. I have a calender on my fridge that I keep track of what I do to stay healthy. It keeps me motivated and I can track my progress!

 

Once you start recording your daily routine- it will become apart of your daily life. You will no longer have to thing about “is this good for me”- you will just know.

If you are a tech-savvy person there are many online journals and help with getting healthy. I found this free one very helpful http://www.fitday.com/webfit/Index9.html

Or you can just keep a small notepad in your purse, car or wallet.

 

Working Out – How much Physical Activity Do You Need A Week?

After a long day of work, making dinner for the family, and cleaning the house; the last thing on your mind is to throw your running shoes on and hit the gym.  According to the 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, you need to do two types of physical activity each week to improve your health–aerobic and muscle-strengthening. For Example, 2 hours and 30 minutes (150 minutes) of moderate aerobic activity (brisk walking) every week and muscle-strengthening activities 2 or more days a week that work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest,  shoulders, and arms). Try going for a 10-minute brisk walk, 3 times a day, 5 days a week. This will give you a total of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity and for two of those days do some weight lifting. Find more about a fitness plan that works for you at http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/guidelines/adults.html

Everyone knows that the holiday season is the season for gaining weight. I found this fun workout that is only 10 min that will help you shed some of those unwanted pounds. The nice thing about this is that you don’t even have to leave the home.

Here are some workout tips that should help you:

  • Stretch before you start
  • Pick a cardio exercise you enjoy
  • Drink plenty of water throughout the entire workout
  • Mix it up: Don’t do the same routine every time.
  • Limit your workouts to 30-40 min

I know working out is not the most fun, but you will feel better about yourself when you are done. I hope some of these tips helped!

Blaine Seitz, Jeff Tucker take crossfit training to the next level

Even though he has only been participating in CrossFit for two years, Blaine Seitz knows what it takes to help people achieve their fitness goals. A trainer at CrossFit 10-10 in Columbia, Md., Seitz focuses on proper form and nutrition to fuel performance. His understanding of technique and form can be seen at the Suburban Club golf course, where he is a PGA pro.

Seitz represents a wave of young CrossFit trainers who come from other disciplines. In his case, golf. Jeff Tucker, CEO of GSX CrossFit in Fort Worth, Texas, has a longer history with the sport. Tucker says he was doing “back tucks and muscle ups outside of the school” as a kid in Central Texas.  He has been a gymnastics coach, firefighter, police officer, and spent five years as the director of Texas Christian University’s gymnastic and cheerleading program.

As Blaine Seitz and Jeff Tucker clearly show, CrossFit can readily accommodate people of varying backgrounds, whether firefighting or golf. It is this adaptability that has helped CrossFit become one of the fastest growing fitness trends, grabbing new participants every day.

There are now 7,000 crossfit gyms in the U.S., with a success rate of 98 percent. Part of CrossFit’s recipe for success is continually changing and embracing new challenges. As reporter Emily Ritter points out: “CrossFit is a perpetually changing mix of aerobic exercise, gymnastics, and weight lifting, but there’s something else that nobody seems to be able to put their finger on. Is it the comraderie? The fact that there’s something new every day? Or maybe it’s the way your muscles have started revealing themselves in places you haven’t seen for years.”

Blaine Tucker – Winning On And Off The Field

Here at Fitness Life Stories we are eager to recognize young stand out athletes who have transitioned successfully into community icons, more than just a player on a team. After many recommendations, we turned our thoughts towards making note of Blaine Tucker. This young man was the quarterback for the South Brunswick Cougars, based out of North Carolina where he grew up; these days he is a respected and contributing member of his community. There are many things to praise Blaine for, but what most people in his community would say is that he maintained a level of poise and kept a cool head after the devastating loss to Eastern Alamance the end of his 2012 season.

Blaine is not the kind of quarterback to let losses set him back in any way even for a moment he does not lose his composure. Mental health is an important factor in athleticism and maintaining a positive attitude through good sportsmanlike conduct is a great example to be setting for American communities. From a young age Blaine was a successful athlete, and because of his positive words, actions and behavior even after suffering losses, his peers grew appreciation for him and he kept returning the respect by being a contributing member of his society. Any athlete that can keep from flying off the handle sets the bar for his teammates, classmates, and that positive change has the power to alter a whole city’s attitude and environment.

Fitness Life Stories encourages the kind of complete professionalism that Blaine Tucker executes. The example that such a young man has set in Southport North Carolina has enriched the culture of more than just Football but the lives of those around him.

Scott Tucker Starts Fitness Bootcamp

We were extremely pleased to learn recently that Scott Tucker has announced plans to start a free fitness bootcamp for his community. Scott Tucker says that he has benefited immensely from his work as a personal trainer, and he wants to give back to the community that has supported him. While Tucker cannot take on free clients for one on one training sessions, the community bootcamp is a way for the dedicated personal trainer to inspire good health in his community on a group level.

Tucker is accepting individuals with a body mass index over 30 for free admission to the group workout sessions. While the workouts are free, Tucker says that participants are expected to work hard and pay their dues in sweat.

Participants are asked to keep a journal of everything they eat for the week prior to the start of boot camp so that Tucker can correct their bad eating habits on day one. According to Tucker that first week is the hardest for most of the participants.

“I push them the hardest the first week. I want to assess their abilities, but I also want to know how dedicated they are to the program. I can’t help them if they aren’t willing to eat right and work hard.” says Tucker.

Dates for his free boot camp have not yet been set, but Tucker says he “could not be more excited.”

We hope that by publishing Tucker’s good deeds on Fitness Life Stories, more personal trainers will reach out to their communities in similar ways. If there is are free group workouts in your community, let us know! We would love to share your fitness inspiration with the world.x