No Time For Exercise? Try This!

“Fitness” is an elusive term covering a vast array of attributes: flexibility, cardiovascular endurance, muscular endurance, strength, power, balance, coordination, body-fat percentage and more. While its generally accepted that multiple 30-60 minute sessions per week are optimal for producing results, the truth is that it’s possible to do a great amount in far less time.

EVERYONE has five minutes a day…the only question is, can anything really useful be done in just 300 seconds?

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The answer is a resounding “yes”, but we need choose our exercises carefully. If there is such a limited amount of time, the best choice is to pick the most important muscle group. Chest? Back? Shoulders? Legs? All wrong. The abdominals are the most important muscles in the body. In no particular order, they:

1) Protect the low back.

2) Are vital to sports performance, transferring power from the lower to upper body.

3) Aid digestion, and massage the internal organs.

4) Are important for proper, healthy sexual function.

5) Are “the window of health”—we judge fitness and health more rapidly with a glimpse at the waistline than any other single indication.

6) Are vital for posture, which increases physical energy and mood.

7) Are the linchpin of your entire fitness program. You’ve never seen someone with toned abdominal muscles and flabby arms and legs, have you? The reverse is not true.

8) Are the most important muscle group for physical attractiveness in men or women. No matter the wonderful definition of arms or legs, if your gut is sagging, you have a problem!

There are other reasons, but one of the best is the fact that of all body parts, the abs tend to be the least favorite body part to work. They’re hard! That reason alone should be enough to motivate you: anything other people don’t like working is a golden opportunity for you!

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But how can you do anything useful in just five minutes? One daily approach is to perform five minutes of the toughest ab exercises you can find, and a fantastic tool for this is a “Roller Wheel” available for five dollars at any sporting goods store. Not the fancy ones, just the simple get-on-your-knees variety. Try this: perform one rep, and take a breath. Then do two reps, and take two breaths. Then three, and take three breaths…and so on until you can’t go any higher. Then, drop back to one rep, and start climbing again. When that gets easy, take one breath for every two reps.

An even better method is to break up your exercise into multiple daily sessions. The roller wheel is useful here as well, but you might want to investigate some of the powerful “Vacuum” exercises from yoga, or the dynamic-tension style “stomach flattening” exercises. In these, you exhale all air, and flex the abdominal muscles for several seconds. Believe me, if you do these properly, even without aerobic exercise your waistline will decrease!

While there is no serious disagreement that longer sessions produce better, and more balanced results, the busiest man or woman on earth can find five minutes a day…and sometimes, that toehold is what it takes to get you started on a new, healthier lifestyle.

No Excuses Exercises

It’s old news that exercising is the single best way to spark up your weight loss efforts. The activity perks up your metabolism, and eats up more calories. In addition, the more you exercise, the better the effect. Exercising builds muscle mass, which is denser and more compact than fat. That means your body has to expend more effort to pump blood through it, and it requires more nutrients to keep it healthy. The end result? Even at rest, your body naturally burns more calories.

Unfortunately, the prospect of exercising tends to elicit groans from most people. There’s all the logistics to work out – the time, equipment, expense and the sheer, utter boringness of it all. Negative thinking about exercise can sabotage all your good intentions. Here’s a list of answers for some of the most commonly used excuses not to exercise.

I don’t have time to exercise!

Exercise could be one of the most important things you’ll do for your health today. MAKE time to exercise. If you’re doing traditional workouts – move those weights and mats right out into the family room and make use of your television time. Instead of flopping down in a chair while you watch the news or your favorite show, be active. Run in place, do leg lifts or heft weights. Use time in your car to tighten and tone muscles with isometric tummy tighteners. Walk up the stairs instead of using the elevator. Exercise doesn’t have to be a solid hour at the gym. Anything that revs up your motors is great for your body.

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I don’t have the right equipment at home.

You don’t need equipment to exercise. A brisk walk around the block is good for you – and burns over 200 calories. Vacuuming your carpets can burn nearly as much. Flip on your radio or pop in your favorite high-energy CD and dance. Don’t fool yourself into thinking that your ‘exercise’ has to be a carefully planned workout to work all the right muscles in the right order with the right tension. Exercise means being active. Just do it.

I can’t afford a membership to the gym.

If you’d rather exercise at the gym (and have access to their fitness machines, whirlpools, swimming pool and trainers), there are a lot of ways to make it more affordable. Check with your health insurance company to see if they offer incentives. Most of the major health insurance companies, including Blue Cross, cover part or all of fitness club memberships as part of your benefits. If yours doesn’t, or if you don’t have health insurance, call your local YMCA or YWCA. Most offer ‘scholarships’ or sliding fee scales for memberships to their facilities.

But exercise is such a chore!

Says who? Make getting your daily exercise fun. Play a game. Go dancing. Grab a few friends for a weekend hike in the state park. Exercise doesn’t have to be routine. Stop thinking of it as a chore and start thinking of it as recreation. You’ll be amazed what a difference it makes.

Need A Weight Loss Plan Strategy?

These days, it seems that you can’t open a newspaper without seeing an article about one medical study or other that warns about all of the potentially harmful consequences associated with being overweight. For example, overweight people have higher risks of heart disease, hypertension, stroke, and diabetes. If you ask me, those are some pretty compelling reasons to make a commitment to shed some pounds now. But perhaps you’re a bit cynical about the whole dieting process because of failed attempts in the past.

With the number of weight loss plans, the key is most likely to find the best one that suits you and your body. One of the big ones on the market today is the South Beach diet. I swear everywhere I turn; I bump into a new meal from South Beach Diet. You really can’t get any simpler than that. The meals are already prepared for you. A microwave is all you need. While great weight loss plans such as Weight Watchers offer a plethora of products to suit anyone’s needs, we have to remember the other part of the weight loss equation. Regardless of what weight loss plans you’ve tested out, exercise is always a factor. It remains imperative that in order to drop pounds and stay in good shape, we all need to have a good fitness regime along with our healthy diets.

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Many of us look too hard for the easy way out. This is not a plausible solution by any means. Jump online and sort through the deluge of weight loss plans and you will surely come across one that suits your lifestyle. With the vast spectrum of information at our fingertips, there is no reason why we should have any difficulty locating that perfect diet and workout routine. The key to successful weight loss plans is tenacity. Follow the diet accordingly and strive to exercise on a regular basis and you will certainly fit into those tight jeans again.

People are constantly looking for ways to improve the results when they have made the decision to lose a few pounds. We all know the traditional advice to watch what you eat and to get more exercise. Just remember that there are no magic weight loss products out there. The foundation of any effective diet is a combination of healthy eating habits and exercise. If you do just one or the other, you’re not likely going to see any noticeable long-term results.

Move, Move, Move for Greater Weight Loss

Incidental activity is very important in the process of losing weight as you can burn more calories than relying on dietary means alone. Fat is burned from the body when cells oxidize to release energy in the form of exercise or movement. When the exercise is done slowly to moderately then the majority of energy is taken from the fat stores.

The loss of fat comes from fat cells all over the body, not from one or more specific area’s so spot reduction of a certain area is not possible. The main priority of this article is to show you the quickest and safest way to lose fat from the body.

The key to effective aerobic training that burns off the maximum amount of fat is long-term consistency not intensity. It doesn’t matter if you run a mile, jog a mile or walk a mile you will burn exactly the same amount of calories.

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The best exercise by far for the purpose of fat-loss is fast walking either indoors on the treadmill or outdoors. What many don’t know is that walking produces a greater percentage of fat loss as opposed to jogging or running. Other aerobic activities are the treadmill, bike, climber or any other training gear found in or out of the gym.

Walk or exercise until you are mildly puffing and hold that rate until the allotted time. If your aerobic activities leave you panting or breathless, your going too hard, your energy is coming from your carbohydrate reserves and not from your fat stores. Try fast walking for one hour a day every day of the week if you are able.

Here are some of the benefits of Fast Walking : Easy to Perform – Most Conventional – All Natural Body Movement – Doesn’t Cause Injuries – Can Be Done Anywhere – The Best Minimal Effort Exercise for Fat Loss.

Research shows that regular, brisk walking is one of the best exercises we can do for overall fitness. It suits people of all ages and fitness levels, it’s easy to get started and there’s no complicated technique to learn or equipment to buy.

Walking is an excellent way to get fit because it uses nearly all the muscles and, as you have to carry your body weight, you can get a good workout from it.

It’s also safer on the joints and the back than most other forms of exercise because you’re not jumping up and down, so the impact is low.

Studies have shown that taking a daily 20-minute walk can reduce the risk of heart attack as much as 50%, it also reduces high blood pressure and helps to burn fat to keep weight under control.

Walking and other weight bearing exercises (Strength training) helps to increase bone mass, which protects against osteoporosis and bone fractures.

In the first two weeks, go for a 20-minute walk every other day and then increase this to 40 minutes. At first try to do five 20-minute walks per week totalling 100 minutes a week. Once you get used to the regular exercise, increase this to 40 minutes for five times a week.

You can then gradually increase this as you see fit, if you want to walk every day for 40 minutes or even an hour so be it. Remember the more you walk the more fat that will be burned off. The best pace for fitness training will make you slightly breathless, but you should still be comfortable and be able to carry on a conversation.

As you get fitter, you’ll want to stretch a little harder to keep your heart rate up. Try lengthening your strides, increasing your pace. Keep your shoulders back, your chest lifted and your tummy pulled in when you walk, hold your head up for open, easy breathing.

Practical Tips

If your feeling stressed, try counting your steps repeatedly from one to ten as you walk, this helps some people achieve a meditative effect and can be a great tension reliever when practiced over a full 40 minutes.

Time yourself, measure the distance or increase the gradient to make the workout more challenging. Drink plenty of fluids during and after your walk.

Make safety your first consideration. Don’t walk after dark except in well-lit, busy places. Start the walk slowly, and then gradually increase the pace.

In all other activities try to move, move, move. Try parking the car further away from your destination so you can walk the extra distance, hide all your remote controls so you have to get up and change the channels manually. These all help burn those extra calories and body fat from your frame.

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