I’m going to give you a little Exercise Physiology lesson today…all about strengthening your heart and lungs!
The cardio-respiratory system or the heart and lungs is responsible for the distribution of oxygen throughout the body. Oxygen, the gas that makes up 21% of the air we breathe, is critical to life. In fact, tissues will start to die without oxygen in about 6 minutes. So the efficiency of the heart and lungs and how they work together is very important both during rest and exercise.
This system functions by first causing us to breathe using our respiratory muscles. Air then enters our bodies and travels to our lungs. The oxygen is diffused through our lungs and into our blood stream and travels towards the heart. The heart is a strong enough muscle to be able to pump the blood to the entire body where tissues will extract the oxygen to use it to produce energy. Carbon Dioxide, a toxic waste product, is produced and the body must then dispose of it so it travels back up to the heart, then to the lungs and we exhale it. This entire process is an ongoing system that of course, occurs more rapidly during exercise. There are a few things that can make this system function more or less effectively. Read more on Strengthening Your Heart and Lungs…
Our annual 6 week Spring Makeover Challenge allows our clients to participate in a fun, friendly team competition to help them shed that extra winter layer that most of us put in during the cold, dark rainy days. Each of our trainers recruit team members and we all compete against each other to see who can ramp it up the most and achieve the best results. There’s nothing like a little peer pressure to get you to do what you need to do to reach your goals.
Read more on Spring Makeover Challenge – Week 6…
When it comes to your health and fitness goals, there are a lot of different ways to achieve the same results. At Northwest Personal Training, we host an annual Spring Makeover Challenge when our clients and trainers compete against each other using different approaches to maximize fat loss in a 6 week period.
Read more on Spring Makeover Challenge – Week 5…
The old adage “use it or lose it” appears to ring true in almost all areas of your general health and fitness. You just can’t store the benefits associated with a healthy lifestyle. Here are some areas that may be affected by neglect:
If you don’t challenge your heart, your aerobic capacity will definitely decrease with time and unfortunately, it becomes a vicious cycle. You don’t exercise so you get out of shape, then daily activities start to become more challenging so you start to look for ways to make movement easier ie take the elevators and escalators instead of stairs, park closer, sit more, drive more etc. Then your cardiovascular fitness deteriorates even further, you’re huffing and puffing more and starting to move even less because it’s uncomfortable. So stop the cycle and start moving your body and challenging your heart.
For those of you who do exercise regularly and find yourself out of your routine for whatever reason, generally, after only one or two weeks of complete inactivity, significant reductions in cardio-vascular fitness can be measured. It seems to be the fitness component that is affected first by a lapse in training. But the good news is Read more on Use It Or Lose It…
Achieving Your Goals and Dream Life – Step Six
Surround Yourself with Amazing People
We have so far discussed 5 critical steps to achieving your goals and dream life. If you’ve missed the series, it would be helpful to go back and review what we’ve covered so far.
I am 100% confident that today’s step “Surrounding yourself with Amazing People” is one of the keys to the life I live. I feel incredibly fortunate to have an amazing group of friends who like to participate in events and activities with me. Then it made me think that that’s what absolutely everybody needs!
If you want to be great, you have to surround yourself with great people.
You are who you hang with – it’s called contagism – it rubs off! If you want to be healthy and active, surround yourself with active and healthy people. If you want to commit to eating a healthy diet, surround yourself with people who are also committed to that. If you want to travel the world, surround yourself with others that have that adventurous spirit. If you want to finish a triathlon, start hanging out with triathletes. If you want to succeed in your career, find a mentor who has achieved great successes who can guide and direct you. If you want to have a healthy relationship with your partner, surround yourself with friends who put their relationships first so they can offer a positive role model. Bottom line – you are who you hang with! So if all your friends sit around cursing and gossiping about others, you’ll find yourself doing the same. If all your friends cheat on their spouses, then you may find yourself overstepping boundaries. If all your friends are happy to live a mediocre life, you’ll find yourself settling also. If all your friends are unhappy about their jobs and sit around complaining about it all day instead of doing something about, you’ll do the same. If all your friends drink, eat pizza and chicken wings and sit around watching TV all day, that’s probably what you will do as well. And don’t get me wrong, I enjoy living it up as well but, my friends and I all understand, we’ve got to earn it first!
Everybody needs people in their life who inspire them, challenge them, build them up, empower them, support them and encourage them to reach for their potential, their personal best, their dreams.
The opposite happens if you surround yourself with those who are negative, critical, and controlling and who steal your job and tear you down.
Some people will pull you up and others will pull you down – it’s your decision who you will give your time to.
It doesn’t necessarily mean you have to Read more on Achieving Your Goals and Dream Life – Step Six…
Achieving your Goals and Dream Life – Step Two
Last week we discussed the importance of creating a map for all realms of your life so that every initiative and action you take points you towards your goals and your dream life. Do not underestimate the power of Step #1 – that’s why it’s number one!
Today, we move onto….
Step Two: Get Physical!
Since I’m a fitness professional, you had to know we’d be going here right? But it’s true that it’s hard to be great if you don’t feel great. It’s hard to live your best life and achieve all your dreams if you’re not at your physical best. Unfortunately, more than half of our population is overweight or obese and out of shape. The International Journal of Obesity released a report that says we expend about 500-800 calories less per day than we did a few decades ago. All the labor saving devises like remote controls, escalators, elevators, moving walkways and the internet that are supposed to be making our lives easier are in fact making us sick and slowly killing us. If you think about it, that’s equivalent to a 5-8 mile run! That’s how much less we move our bodies today! Daily movement is absolutely critical to counteract our sedentary society.
The Surgeon General released a finding that said we need to move our bodies about 30 minutes a day to increase our health. The finding wasn’t referring to exercise but rather just being active with household chores, walking the dog, cleaning the house, mowing the lawn etc. I remember thinking that I can’t believe a government official would have to make a public announcement to just move our bodies 30 minutes a day. But the sad reality is that most people don’t. Think of the average North American day. We wake up, sit to have breakfast, get in the car and drive to work, sit at a computer all day perhaps working right through lunch with interoffice email not even requiring us to leave our desk to communicate with a co-worker, get back in our cars to drive home, sit to eat dinner and then lay on the couch all night watching TV. When you add up the actual minutes of movement it doesn’t even add up to 30 minutes. That’s a sad reality. But in America, instead of fixing the problem, we accommodate the problem. There are entire industries creating products and offering services to accommodate our bigger butts. We don’t want to make someone feel uncomfortable so we build bigger chairs and airline seats!
Something’s got to give and hopefully it won’t be our hearts.
So yes, you have to move your bodies – every day! And one of the things I’ve learned after being a fitness professional for 25 years is that exercise is 10% physical and 90% mental. My biggest obstacle when working with clients is helping them to change their mindset so they catch the ‘fitness bug’ and exercise becomes a lifestyle habit like brushing their teeth or taking a shower. In the beginning most people find exercise a chore and they actually hate it but eventually, if you stick with it long enough, you will notice your days are better when you workout, you may look forward to workouts and actually enjoy them! Eventually, you want to workout and actually need exercise and then you’re hooked for life!
Read more on Achieving Your Goals and Dream Life – Step Two…
Soccer players are amazing athletes possessing exceptional speed, agility and kicking, jumping and throwing power. The following drills will enhance performance in all components of the game. Click on the link below for photos and descriptions of all exercises.
Read more on Exercises for soccer players…
Baseball, a favorite American summer activity for kids and adults, requires speed, throwing power and batting strength. Click on the link below to learn exercises to enhance performance and minimize injury.
Read more on Exercises for baseball players…
Heading down to your local community pool for a relaxing swim is an activity that many look forward to. But if want to swim with more strength and greater efficiency and avoid feeling like you’re about to drown, click on the link below for some exercises to improve your swimming performance.
Read more on Join me at the pool?…
Many people are nervous initially to in-line skate because of a fear of falling. But if you spend some time working on your balance, you can feel confident strapping on a pair of skates and cruising to an awesome workout for your hips and thighs.
Read more on Are you inline?…