Posts Tagged ‘lose-weight’

Easy Exercise Program

In an ideal world we would all be setting our alarm clocks for 6:30am, drinking a smoothie made of 7 vegetables for breakfast before heading to the gym for a gruelling 3 hour workout.

Life just isn’t like that is it? No matter how good our intentions, life has a knack of throwing things at us. How is it possible to keep fit whilst dealing with all the hassles of every day life?

The Answer: Work Smart Not Hard

I was going to join my local gym the other week but decided against it as I wasn’t impressed with it. So instead I’ve been using a “little and often” technique which can be done from your own home without the need for any expensive equipment.

Basically you do a few exercises at regular intervals spread throughout the day. You might only have time to do 30 seconds at a time or you might be able to manage 5 minutes. It’s better to do a little bit often than nothing at all.

(I’ve included a number of quality links in this post, I suggest you bookmark this page so you can refer to it later.)

Here’s what you need to do:

1. Warm Up

It’s important to get the blood warmed up and pumping round your body so that your muscles can stretch easier. Swing your arms around your head, do star jumps or have a dance to your favourite tune.

2. Stretch

To prevent possible injuries you need to make sure your muscles are nicely stretched and supple. A lot of people don’t spend enough time stretching or even miss it out altogether. If you have been leading a sedentary lifestyle you’ll probably want to concentrate on stretching for a couple of weeks before doing any strength exercises to prevent injury.

If you are looking for a comprehensive book on stretching I personally recommend Sport Stretch as this is what was recommended by my mum’s personal trainer. He used to be a trainer in the Army, so he should know what he’s talking about!

3. Strength

When it comes to increasing strength there’s two main types of exercise you can do. You can either work each muscle individually (isolated) or you can exercise a number of muscles all at the same time (compound).

Ideally you should do a mixture of both isolated and compound exercises but because you have a life you should concentrate on compound exercises. You don’t need expensive gym equipment to do these exercises however you might later on want to buy a Dumbell Set and an Exercise Ball.

Here are some links on how to do the main compound exercises:

  • Lunges – Workout all the muscles in you legs and bum (great for us girls!). If you’re new to exercising then you can start of doing lunges without dumbbells.
  • Press-ups – This is an excellent video on how to do a press-up correctly. I learnt a lot from it.
  • Tricep Dips – If you find your wrists get sore, try doing Dumbbell Kickbacks instead.

Some more exercises to try out here: Total Body Strength for Beginners

4. Cardio

Doing cardio is important for increasing lung capacity, reducing your chance of coronary artery disease plus generally gives you more energy. It might be a bit more difficult to do a cardio workout in your own home without a treadmill or exercise bike but here are some tips for you:

  • Walk instead of taking the car
  • Use the stairs instead of the elevator/escalator
  • Run up the stairs instead of walking
  • Play with your kids in the garden

It might seem a lot to do everyday but you only need to do a few exercises at a time. Remember: little and often. I’ve been on this regime for about 2 weeks now and am amazed at how much strength and flexibility I’ve gained.

Why not challenge yourself to do this for the next 21 days?
Why 21? Well, it seems that’s how long it takes to form a habit.

Disclaimer: I’m not a trained fitness expert; the above tips are what I follow personally and may not be suitable for every one. Please check with a doctor before starting any exercise regime.

Can Tea Really Help You Lose Weight?

You may already have read about tea’s ability to decrease your chance of heart disease and reduce your stress but will it help shift a few pounds? Well, there have been studies, and yes, it seems that tea can help you lose weight.

Increase Your Energy

Many people these days suffer from a lack of energy so turn to caffeine tablets and pills but a better way of increasing your energy is by drinking tea. Because tea gives you more energy there’s no excuse for not exercising which means you can burn off extra fat calories.

Tea has also been shown to increase your body’s metabolic rate so that you can burn of fat. It seems that according to studies, tea can help you burn off 80 calories a day along with exercising.

You may or may not have heard of “flavanoids”. Flavanoids work by increasing your body’s natural hormone “norepinephrine”. So how does this help you? Well, norepinephrine encourages the body’s metabolic rate for burning of the fat calories.

Fat Oxidation

Studies have also shown that if you drink between 3 and 5 cups of green tea a day an extract within the tea helps with fat oxidation speed. This was tested against a group of people who took a placebo – those folks didn’t notice any change in energy levels. Green tea is definitely a better alternative to expensive diet pills which may cause you more harm than good.

Other Health Benefits

Don’t think of tea as just being a way to lose weight. Tea also offers many other health benefits including improved immune system, helps with arthritis symptoms and may prevent cancer.

You don’t have to be a health expert to know that water is essential to a healthy lifestyle. By drinking a few cups a day you’ll be giving your body the water it needs. When buying tea however, look out for one which either is low in caffeine or is caffeine free.

Better Than “Diet Pills”

There are many problems associated with diet pills; the weight loss industry is massive so there are many unscrupulous people selling pills at over-inflated prices. Many of these products don’t contain what they say they do or only contain a very small amount. You don’t have these problems with tea because it has been tested so much and is proven to be safe. Its also a fraction of the price compared to the normal diet pill.  You might also want to add in some lemon juice as part of a lemon juice liver cleanse.

If your aim is to lose an extra few pounds, then why not try some tea? Its not expensive, it’s healthy plus it’s also very tasty. If you’re a drinker of coffee and sugary drinks then simply swap them for a cup of tea. Easy as that.