10 Secrets to Optimizing Your Exercise Plan

Keeping up with your exercise routine is more than just having the right motivation. In fact, this might only conquer half the battle. If you are having a hard time achieving your exercise goals on time, keep in mind these tips the next time when a situation threatens to veer you out of your path.

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Gym Free-weights Area Category:Gyms_and_Health_Clubs (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

  1. Know your body.

Before anything else, you need to assess you body. Go to a local clinic or take some fitness tests so you have an idea on the current state of your body. From here, picking out your goals along with the exercise routines should be easier.

  1. Book yourself.

The people around you might not understand why exercise is very important for you but do not be wavered and still keep this as a priority. Place this in your datebook so you can always that you have a prior commitment if someone attempts to take this time away from you.

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8 Helpful Hints for Home Video Workouts

Are you a neophyte in the realm of working out? Or are you just shy to brave the gym with all those intimidating equipment and people? If this is the case, you would probably highly benefit from getting one of those home video workouts and do your routines right in the comfort of your own home without having to pay for ridiculously expensive gym memberships or a personal trainer.

These home exercise videos sure are good alternatives to losing and keeping off those pounds. Before you get started, make sure that you check out the following tips first. They might come in handy at some point while you are exercising at home.

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Physical Fitness for Senior Citizens

The baby boomers are the largest generation in our history.  As they start to turn to senior citizens, talking the important steps to maintain their health will become more and more important.

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So to help those who are turning 65…or who have already done so…I wanted to put some simple to follow steps together so that those who wish can regain their strength and vitality.

Step 1: Get a thorough physical exam from your physician.  You need an honest appraisal of your health with your doctor to determine what your current condition is.  From this, you will learn not only what you current medical condition is [ie: if you are diabetic, high blood pressure, need to lose weight, etc…] but also have a conversation with your doctor to find out some of the weight loss tips you will need to follow in order to get in shape.

Step 2:  I am going to recommend the best overall exercise you can do…WALKING!  Why would I say so…because walking:

  • Can be done anywhere
  • Is free to do
  • Anyone can do it
  • No special equipment needed

And so long as you do it long enough…30 minutes at least…and strenuously enough…aiming to reach a 4.0 mph pace…this is one of the best workouts you could consider.

Step 3: Perhaps the biggest misnomer about exercise is that it has to involve ‘working out.’  Just because you are not sweating in a gym doesn’t mean that you aren’t exercising.  Here are a few ideas…

  • Playing with your grandchildren
  • Washing your car
  • Home remodeling
  • Dancing
  • Gardening
  • Yard work

All of these will get your heartbeat up without you going to the gym.

Step 4: Strength training-The best way to build muscle, lose weight, maintain strong bones, ward off osteoporosis and fight off the effects of age is by strength training.  Now, men won’t have the problem that women will have with that.  But just think about things this way…

The key to losing weight and regaining your health is to increase your metabolism so that your burns more calories when you are not working out.  And the only way to effectively do, as I said, this is to speed up your metabolism.  To do this is a natural and holistic fashion; there is one way to accomplish this…to add muscle to your frame.

In addition, for women strength training has the added benefit of strengthening bones so that the effects of ailments such as osteoporosis can be lessened or eliminated.

Now, I am not suggesting to anyone here that they have to start lifting heavy weights or compete in the World’s Strongest Man competition.  Quite the contrary, I am suggesting that you develop the discipline to do 20-30 minutes of resistance band and body weight workouts…from home…2-3 days a week.  Done properly, if you do resistance band exercises from home you will be able to obtain the same workout without having to go to the gym.

Step 5: Yoga…this one the guys will resist, but don’t knock it until you have tried it.  Yoga increases strength, flexibility and endurance.  And because it is a very low impact workout it is great for people with joint problems.

Step 6: Explore other avenues of cardiovascular endurance.  If you are bored with walking…especially if you do it on the treadmill at the gym…here are a few alternatives for you.

  • Elliptical machine [cross country skiing]
  • Step machine
  • Swimming
  • Step aerobics
  • Kickboxing
  • Rowing machine, etc…

There are plenty of options for you to choose from to get your heartbeat up.  The choice is up to you.  Find something you enjoy to do and start moving.

Step 7: Eating right.  I will mention it here even though your doctor probably talked to you about changing your diet and adding less processed foods at your physical.  Make sure to listen to your doctor’s recommendations regarding your intake of sugar and salt, as well as saturated fat that can raise your cholesterol.

About the author:

Tony Rovere is an advocate for senior citizens and elder health issues having to deal with the complexities of the Medicaid process following his mother’s heart attack.

He now shares his insights on care giving and senior issues on his blog, StuffSeniorsNeed, which was created to help senior citizens and baby boomers who have become caregivers.

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How to Monitor Your Heart Beat Rate While On The Elliptical Trainer

Even though most fitness novices do not really understand the necessity of monitoring heart rate while on the training machines, this guide is compelled to point out that there is a solid reason why most of the top cardio machines like treadmills, bikes and elliptical trainers come equipped with a heart beat rate monitor. In general, when you make the generous investment of purchasing one of the cardio exercise machines, you probably want to ensure that your workout routine is at an optimal level. But getting in shape as fast as possible implies far more than owning a high-end gym and training equipment; it also implies the ability of monitoring your progress and adapting your workout accordingly.

Use Heart Beat Rate To Avoid The Plateau Phase

In essence, what you need to avoid is getting stuck in the plateau phase, where the body is no longer forced to push the strength and resistance threshold further, therefore the muscles are no longer developing and you are not burning any adipose tissue during the exercise routine. For the goal of determining the level of exertion of the workout, the heart rate is an excellent indicator.

Avoid Excessively High Heart Rate

However, remember that while the heart rate under the recommended level means you are in plateau, the excessively high heart rate can be equally counterproductive. Therefore, what you will need to do is ensure the heart rate is at an optimal level and here is how the reading for each of the five zones should look like. On a side note, the maximum heart rate for an individual can be calculating by subtracting your current age from 220.

Primarily, warming up the body for the exercise routine is necessary, so this part of the workout should be designed to stimulate the heart rate no more than simple walks. The advantages associated with this part of the routine include lowering the blood pressure, the bad cholesterol and diminishing the percentage of adipose tissue. In the warm-up phase, the exertion should only solicit 50 to 60 percent of the highest heart rate. Next, you will be moving to the temperate zone, where the exertion increases from 60 to 70 percent of the highest possible heart rate, burning up more calories in the process.

The aerobic zone, which has the same level of exertion as the constant-paced jog, implies you will need to use between 70 and 80 percent of the high end heart rate in order to keep up. The aerobic zone of the workout routine has the purpose of boosting the functioning of the respiratory and the cardiovascular system and strengthening the heart. In the anaerobic zone, which is basically the equivalent of intensive running; the level of the heart rate should vary between 80 and 90 percent of the maximum capacity.

Finally, the red line zone which is a part of the routine that aims to push your limits should be performed only for a short amount of time; this utilizes between 90 and 100 percent of the max heart rate. When using the cardio vascular exercise machines, most coaches and trainers advise people to shift between these zones frequently in order to attain optimal results.

Pauly Singh was reading some reviews of elliptical machines on the internet and was amazed to find the importance of monitoring your heart rate while using it. So he would like to share his experience to help you find the best elliptical trainers through his article.

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Eating Healthy and Losing Weight 101

If you are overweight and have been trying everything to lose it than you need to know a couple of simple steps. Eating healthy is the only way to go, plan out your meals so that you know what you are going to eat even the day before. Try to avoid restaurants, they put more butter and other ingredients in there foods to make them taste better,even in foods that are normally more healthy. If you do go to a restaurant, ask the waiter to go easy on the ingredients.

Drink a lot of water, drinking as much as you can will help you throughout the day. It helps to clean your system and it also helps you not to feel hungry during the day. I can’t really tell you how much you should drink because everyone is different but look it up according to your body mass or the best thing to do is to ask your doctor. Weight loss is simple if you know how to accomplish it. You are going to have to remain on track with your workouts. And if you mess up don’t let it get you down just do better in the future.

Buying fitness equipment will help you lose weight in specific areas of your body. You don’t have to buy the most expensive equipment either, there are some pretty cheap fitness equipment for sale. You can find those on the internet or at local garage sales, pretty much anywhere. One of my favorite workout machines is the pull up bar. There are plenty of great workouts you can do without fitness equipment that help you get toned as well. One is simply just flexing your muscle every now and then. You can flex your stomach muscles or your arms and neck, whatever, the ending result will make you look more toned and chiseled.

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Calculating Your Optimum Fat Burning Heart Rate

Everyone knows that quickly burning fat requires a certain amount of cardiovascular exercise. You will read all kinds of different theories about what your target heart rate zone is for burning the most fat possible. Well, I have experimented with numerous different heart rates and I found that there is a very simple way to determine the heart rate range for you to efficiently shed unwanted body fat.

A friend of mine actually told me about this simple calculation as he had been using it for several months and had gotten great results. The only thing you need to know to determine your target fat burning heart rate is your age. Using your age, you can approximate your maximum heart rate, and once you know what your maximum heart rate is, you can easily determine the heart rate range you should be shooting for when doing your cardio workouts.

The formula for maximum heart rate looks like this:

Maximum Heart Rate = 220 – Your Age

So a 30 year old person will have a maximum heart rate of 190 beats per minute. My friend explained that he noticed the best fat burning results when maintaining his heart rate in the range of 70% to 80% of his maximum heart rate. So he would simply take his maximum heart rate (calculated using the formula above) and then multiply his maximum heart rate by 0.7 and then multiply his maximum heart rate by 0.8. The results of multiplying his maximum heart rate by these 2 values provide the heart rate zone that he uses for his cardio workouts.

So, using the 30 year old example, they would take their maximum heart rate of 190 beats per minute and multiply it by 0.7 and 0.8 separately. This calculation yields the values of 133 and 152, respectively. This means that the best fat burning heart rate for a 30 year old person is 133-152 beats per minute and this should be the heart rate that is maintained for the majority of that person’s cardiovascular workouts.

When starting your cardio workouts it may take a few minutes to elevate your heart rate into the desired heart rate range, but once you get it there, it should remain there as long as you don’t drastically decrease your level of intensity. Using your, age calculate your own personal fat burning heart rate range and give it a try for a week or two. You will be pleasantly surprised at the results you will see compared to using a heart rate zone that is much lower in intensity.

Keep in mind that no matter how often you exercise, you will never significantly reduce your body fat percentage if you are not in a daily caloric deficit. I recommend starting at a specific daily caloric allotment and then reducing your calories anytime a week goes by and you haven’t lost any weight. Never quickly take away calories from your body as this will make your body go into “panic mode” and it will hoard as much fat as possible. The right way to shed body fat is to start off at a moderate amount of daily calories and slowly decrease your number of daily calories when you are no longer losing weight.

Combining cardiovascular exercise with a calorie conscious diet will produce noticeable results in a matter of weeks if you remain committed to achieving your fat loss goals. My experience has told me that the only people that fail to get the body they desire are those that give up. Without fail, everyone that I know that has remained committed to their goals, have eventually reached them.

For more information on reducing body fat and transforming your body, I recommend checking out RippedOut.com.

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