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You Can’t Be Too Fit

Dramatic results in a new study from the Cleveland Clinic show that you can't be too fit, and that not exercising is worse for your health than smoking, diabetes or heart disease.

How Protein Builds Muscles

Many body builders and weight lifters are overly concerned about what they eat and what food supplements they take. If you want to grow larger and stronger muscles, it helps to understand how food can help your training program. Anything that helps you recover faster from a hard workout will allow you to do more work to make you stronger. Scientists have known for years that you recover faster by eating immediately after you finish your hard workout.

Intervals for Everyone

The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) surveyed more than 4,000 fitness professionals and found that High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is the most popular trend in fitness for 2018. All healthy people can benefit from some form of interval training. They can pick up the pace for a few seconds while walking, running, cycling, swimming, skiing or skating, and then slow down when they feel the least discomfort.

Even a 100-Year-Old Can Improve with Training

You can improve athletic performance at any age with proper training, even if you are over 100 years old. Traditional feeling among scientists is that aging is progressive and inevitable, and that your genetic programming causes you to age no matter what you do. This paper shows that physical training can reverse established markers of aging.

Lifting Weights Won’t Make You Musclebound

Training for strength improves coordination. Your brain is a master switchboard that coordinates your muscles. Lifting weights does not interfere with brain function; it improves coordination in events that require strength, such as playing sports, working as a carpenter, opening a stuck door or beating a drum.

Stress Fractures – Prevention and Treatment

If you are an exerciser and develop a sharp pain on a bone that hurts when you press directly on that spot and does not hurt to touch an inch away, you probably have a stress fracture. Stress fractures are very common injuries, particularly in runners.

Cold Weather May Help You Lose Weight

A new study shows that exposing mice to cold temperatures increases their body’s production of calorie-burning "brown fat" (Molecular Cell, published online Jan. 8, 2015). You have two types of fat in your body: • white fat that your body stores when you eat too much or exercise too little, and • brown fat...

Sitting Will Not Harm Vigorous Exercisers

I think that asking people to stand at work, rather than sit, is harmful advice because standing and not moving is no better than sitting and is just going to make you too tired to exercise vigorously when you are not working.

Achilles Tendinitis

Achilles tendinitis means you feel pain in the large tendon that extends from in the back of your heel to your calf muscle. It hurts most when you get up in the morning and when you start to walk or run. It will heal only if you stop running and find another sport that doesn't hurt when you do it, such as cycling, swimming, or pulling on a rowing machine.

Do You Need a Heart Rate Monitor?

All maximum heart rate formulae are based on averages. They can be used to help you plan and monitor your exercise program, but they should not be interpreted as absolute limits or goals. Your maximum heart rate may differ from these averages. Whether you are a competitive athlete or an ordinary exerciser, you really do not need a heart rate monitor.

Stretching Doesn’t Deliver

Whenever I see someone stretching before or after hard exercise, I worry that the person has gotten bad advice about training. You should not stretch before a competition because stretching weakens muscles.

No More Junk Miles

Junk miles means adding extra miles to your training plan with no purpose other than to increase the number of miles that you ride or run each week. They are done at such low intensity that you do not become short of breath and you do not push yourself very hard.

Exercise May Change Gut Bacteria for More Endurance

An interesting study showed that after finishing the 26-mile Boston Marathon, runners had changes in the bacteria in their colons that may have helped them to run faster and longer.

How to Pedal a Bicycle

You should pedal with the ball of your foot, not your arch. The ankle is the fulcrum for the force you generate with your feet. The ball of your foot is further away from the ankle than your arch so you generate far more force with the ball of your foot. As you straighten your...

Challenging Your Brain During Exercise May Help to Prevent Dementia

Scientific American has a fascinating article that explains why you should exercise your brain while you exercise your body. There is evidence that you may be able to make You can make new brain cells as you age by exercising your skeletal muscles and brain at the same time

Tennis Elbow: A Home Treatment that Works

You don't have to play tennis to develop tennis elbow. It can be due to any movement that puts excessive force on the wrist muscles. Tennis elbow refers to elbow pain as the result of an injury to the elbow tendons that bend and straighten the wrist. Hold your hand down with your thumb on the outside (lateral to your hand) and your elbow straight. Pain on the lateral (outside) part of your elbow is called backhand tennis elbow. Pain on the medial (inside) part is called forehand tennis elbow.

How to Prepare for Skiing When There’s No Snow

The best way to train for skiing is to ski, but snow isn’t always available. To prepare for a skiing trip, you need to strengthen both your heart muscles and your skeletal muscles. You can strengthen your heart for skiing with any exercise that will raise your heart rate for at least 10 minutes, at least three times a week.

Knee Injury Rehabilitation

You are supposed to exercise. It makes you stronger, faster, healthier and may even prolong your life. However, every time you exercise, you risk injury and many sports injuries last forever. Depression, heart attacks, strokes, obesity and diabetes are all associated with a sedentary lifestyle. A twisted ankle can change an active person into a sedentary one. A torn anterior cruciate ligament or meniscus of the knee has a greater than 50 percent chance of causing permanent pain within five years, regardless of the treatment.

Running May Help to Protect Your Knees

Running a marathon may strengthen the cartilage and muscles in knee joints. Marathon runners their MRIs showed a remarkable reduction in the knee bone and cartilage damage and marked strengthening of the knees.

Super Slow Training

Moving a weight very slowly in sets of ten causes the same amount of damage as moving a much heavier weight rapidly, and causes the same type of muscle damage. Lifting lighter weights slowly is far less likely to cause injuries than heavy lifting.

Exercise Treats Insulin Resistance

Up to 70 percent of North Americans adults will develop diabetes or pre-diabetes, usually from insulin resistance caused by excess fat in the liver and muscles. Exercise helps to empty fat from the liver and muscles, so exercise helps to prevent and treat diabetes.

Ten-Minute Workouts for Fitness

One minute of intense exercise can give you the same level of fitness as 45 minutes of more casual exercise. Two groups of out-of-shape men exercised three times a week for 12 weeks. . .

Fitness for Cancer Patients and Survivors

Exercise is now recommended as part of the treatment for cancer by the American College of Sports Medicine, American Society of Clinical Oncology, National Comprehensive Cancer Network, American Cancer Society, Oncology Nursing Society, the Commission on Cancer, and the Cancer Foundation For Life. A regular exercise program reduces carcinogenic inflammation, strengthens the immune system, and improves mental processing by lowering cancer-inducing insulin-like growth factor 1, DNA damage and gene mutations, and increasing apoptosis.

What to Eat Before Prolonged Exercise

Eating a meal three hours or less before exercising can prolong your endurance and improve your performance. This applies whether you are going on a long walk, cycling, rowing, jogging, playing golf or tennis, lifting weights, or even if you are running a marathon or racing long distances on your bicycle. You have only...

How Exercise Helps to Prevent Diabetes and Heart Attacks

Everyone should try to exercise every day because exercise helps to prevent diabetes and heart attacks by lowering high blood sugar and stabilizing plaques. A review of 12 studies shows that exercising within three hours after eating lowers blood sugar levels significantly because contracting muscles remove sugar from the bloodstream at a very high rate and don't even need insulin to do so.

How to Do Interval Training

If you want to improve your level of fitness, you can try interval training, the technique used by athletes in sports requiring speed and endurance such as cycling, skiing, running or swimming. They exercise very intensely, rest, and then alternate intense bursts of exercise and rest until their muscles start to feel heavy or tired.

Slow Runners Don’t Come Out Ahead

A Danish study agrees with most previous studies that regular joggers as a group live longer than sedentary non-joggers (Journal of the American College of Cardiology, February 2, 2015). However, most of the news media reported that this study showed that slow, low-intensity joggers are less likely to die than intense exercisers ("Slow Runners Come Out Ahead," proclaimed the New York Times headline). The joggers who ran faster than 7 mph for more than four hours a week had the same death rate as the non-joggers.

Brain Benefits from Exercise

Three new studies help us understand the many good things that exercise does for your brain. The first study shows that a regular exercise program alters blood flow to the brain to improve mental function in older people who suffer from mild cognitive impairment that often precedes dementia. The second study shows that exercise can improve thinking skills in people of all ages. The third study shows that exercise-induced muscle changes may help to boost mood in older adults

NSAIDs Interfere with Exercise Training

Some athletes and exercisers use pain medication, such as ibuprofin (Advil, Motrin) and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), because they think it will help them to recover faster from muscle soreness so they will be able to do more training and become better athletes. NSAIDs do not prevent DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness).

Fruit Beats Sports Drinks for Exercisers

Many studies show that you can exercise longer and more intensely and recover faster when you take a source of sugar during vigorous exercise. Dozens of brands of sports drinks are promoted to fill this need, but a new study from Appalachian State University shows that a banana appears to offer superior results, specifically helping athletes to recover faster from intense exercise.