Thursday, 5 July 2018

How To Maintain Body Fitness

maintain body fitness

Exercise is a must for anyone and everyone. It is time to erase the misconception that only the overweight need to stay fit. Nature has it that even the underweight persons may have toxic cholesterol levels in the body. You need just about 30 minutes every day to steer clear from the deadly life-threatening diseases that currently sweep millions of people across the globe. Read on for invaluable tips on how to maintain your body fitness. Remember you don’t have to spend lots of cash to keep fit.

The 5 elements of fitness
Allow me to approach it from this angle. An effective fitness program comprises 5 basic components, be it in the gym or at home.

These are:

1. Warm-up

2. Cardiovascular workout

3. Strength exercises

4. Flexibility moves

5. Cool down

Warm-up
Warm-ups are normally designed to help you stay safe and reap the maximum out of your workout. A warm up basically raises the temperature of the body and loosens up the muscles before embarking on the actual workout.

stretching

They are very critical if your workout has to be injury-free. Try active exercises such as hops, rotations and chest expansions to prepare your body. You may also want to have an easy walk outside, jog lightly, or do a few light kicks and punches. The tread mill is another option. A stationary bike will work out fine too. The basic is to get your blood flowing.

Keep the warm-up short, normally not more than 5 minutes.

Cardiovascular workout
These are meant to get your heart rate up, with the resultant effect of balancing the blood flow and boosting your air intake. The best place to start will be walking. It is surprising how this simple form of exercise is underestimated by many. I would recommend you come up with a daily walking routine, say every day at 5.00 p.m. Start with any speed and distance you are comfortable with, but focus on improving with time.

jogging

Do not however limit yourself to this session. Go out of your way to find more opportunity to walk. Be it from your place of work to home, to the shopping centre, an afternoon stroll with your spouse, a weekend nature walk in the local parks, etcetera.

Light jogging is another vital cardiovascular workout you should never ignore. Like walking, start with whatever speed you are comfortable with, but keep improving day after day.

RELATED: 10 Mind-Blowing Benefits Of Walking 15,000 Steps A Day

The third on my list is cycling. This is one important activity to help you maintain body fitness. Consider cycling to work or school, or go for bike races on weekends.

Strength exercises
It is a matter of fact that your muscle strength will decrease as the years roll on. Scientists say that the muscle strength decreases by up to 25 % when you hit 70 years. The figure rises to 50 % as you proceed to 90 years. You definitely have to do something to stop this decline.

You can start by doing jump squats. Squat down then jerk up from the floor. When you land back on your feet, lower your upper body into a squat again. Repeat this for a few minutes and you are on your way to perfect fitness.

push ups

Next try the sit-ups. You can either lie on the ground or sit on a chair. With your hand clutched to the back of your head, raise your upper body with the pivot at the waist.

Push-ups are likewise important strength exercises. Place the hands wider apart than the shoulders with the legs straightened behind you. Lower and raise your body continuously with the arm hinged at the elbow. You may also try the side plank if you wish.

Also try climbing the stairs while carrying a pair of dumbbells. Do the bicep curls as you climb the stairs.

RELATED: Health Benefits of Circuit Training

You can also do the plank. With your face down, support yourself with the elbows and straighten out your body from the head to the ankles. Stay in this position as long as you can. Remember to tuck tight the abdominal muscles.

Finally, lie flat on your back and stretch your arms above your head. Lift up your legs and try to touch them with your stretched arms. This is better known as the jackknife. Repeat this for some few minutes.

Flexibility moves
The American Council on Exercises defines flexibility as

“the range of motion of a given joint or group of joints or the level of tissue extensibility that a muscle group possesses.”

In other words, it is the ability to move joints effectively through a complete range of motion.

Away with the definition, let us see how you can achieve flexibility. The most famous stretching exercises are yoga and Tai Chi.

Start with the shoulder and chest. Clasp your hands behind the back then raise the hands as high as possible while keeping the arms straight.

stretching

Next place one arm across your chest. With the other hand on the elbow, pull the arm towards your chest and stay for a while.

With one hand behind the back, elbow pointing upwards, place your other hand on the elbow and pull it towards the head. This is known as the triceps stretch.

RELATED: Top Benefits Of Doing Squats

Flexibility exercises for the lower body include the glute stretch, the adductor stretch, the single leg hamstring, standing quadriceps, frog stretch, piriformis stretch, lunge with spinal twist, triceps stretch, the standing calf, figure four stretch, 90/90 stretch, butterfly stretch, seated shoulder squeeze, side bend stretch, lunging hip flexor stretch, and lying squad stretch, amongst many others. Try all these variations for complete flexibility.

Cool-down
After the work out, it is just wise to transition your body from the hard work to resting. This is very important as the strain on the heart muscle is reduced as it tries to exert itself back to normal. With cool-down exercise, you are also able to prevent dizziness and discomfort that may arise from blood pooling on the feet.

cool down

Some of the cool-down exercises you can perform to promote that good feeling include: walking, stretching the legs, stretching the chest, stretching the arms, stretching the core, jumping jacks, swimming, having a massage, dancing, doing household chores, etcetera.

Remember to concentrate on every part of the body so as to reap great results.

Diet
A session on maintaining body fitness cannot be complete without mentioning diet. The two go hand in hand. As they say, you are what you eat.

So get rid of all junk food. This is one important aspect of fit lifestyle. Even if you exercise a lot then go back to piles of junk, you may not be doing yourself any good. This is because junk immediately replaces the fat you’ve been trying to burn.

RELATED: 9 Dangers Found In Sugar For Your Health

Avoid foods that are high in sugar, including donuts, cakes, cookies, pudding, canned and dried fruits and cereals and sodas. Also avoid foods that are high in fat. These include processed meats and hydrogenated oils. Foods with high content of artificial ingredients are likewise detrimental.

healthy diet

Make sure to balance your diet by so as to boost your metabolism. Fresh vegetables and fruits such as onions, broccoli, carrots, eggplant, spinach, bananas, oranges, melons and apples should be part of your daily meals. Also include grains such as whole wheat toast, quinoa, barley and oatmeal. Go for high fiber foods such as black beans, pears, cooked lentils, oat bran, raspberries and green peas. Of importance also are high-protein foods such as poultry, lean meat, legumes, fish, chia seeds, nuts, tofu, hemp seeds, eggs, soy beans and cottage cheese.

RELATED: 10 Benefits Of Eating Vegetables

Avoid skipping meals at all costs. I have found this thought amongst people that skipping meals is a solution to losing weight. This is wrong and very inaccurate. Instead, spread your meals across the day, eating small portions every 3 hours or so.

The most important meal is obviously the breakfast. Top this up with some mid-morning snack before lunch time comes. An afternoon snack would be much appropriate before you close the day with dinner.

RELATED: How Bad Is It To Consume Fats For Our Body?

Do not underestimate the importance of water. Look at this: The human body is made up of about 65% water. You got to replenish this as you lose lots of water from morning to evening. Your water intake should even be more if you are exercising, since you lose a lot of it through sweating. Aim at an average of 2 liters per day and you will be safe.

Stick to your plan
Finally, it is important to stick to your daily workout plan for you to reap great results. Do not assume that exercise will automatically fit in within your daily schedule. It requires prior planning so as to be achievable. Just as you plan when to go to work, when to take kids to school, when to go for shopping, or when to prepare your meals, you will need to include your workout session in your day’s to-do list.

motivation

Hooking up with a friend who is also aspiring to get fit is a great idea. He/she can be one source of motivation and encouragement, to keep you going when you feel like letting go. Believe in yourself and do not pay much attention to what others think.

I hope by reading these tips you can visualize a fitter you. Isn’t it? Drop a comment below if you wish. Feel free to share the tips with a friend or two.

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How To Maintain Body Fitness

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