General health and training

General health and training

Nine reasons why women should do weight training

Lyen_Wong

Lyen Wong

Strength training is an important part of improving your overall fitness, and for women, it can mean much more. In addition to numerous health benefits, adding weights to your routine can become a form of personal development that builds strength in all areas of life.

1. Boost your metabolism naturally

By adding muscle through strength training (even just a little bit), your resting metabolic rate (i.e., the amount of calories you burn daily by just existing) also increases. Athletes are calorie-burning machines even when they are not exercising.

2. Protect your knees

Women have a wider pelvis than men, which creates a larger angle at which the femur meets the tibia, also known as the “Q-angle.” This larger angle leads to an amplified chance for ACL injuries— up to 10 times greater than men. Building hip strength through movements such as squats and lunges has been shown to decrease this risk.

3. Gain more independence

Isn’t it nice to be able to put your luggage in the overhead compartment without the help of the man sitting behind you? Let’s smash the stereotype of men being the only ones who are able to help move furniture and get heavy jobs done!

4. Maintain bone density

Due to dropping levels of estrogen, postmenopausal women are prone to osteoporosis. Numerous studies show a positive relationship between resistance training and bone density. When bone feels the “pull” from the muscles, bone growth is stimulated. Not only can strength training offset bone loss, it can actually cause an increase in bone density in women who regularly lift weights.

5. Elevate mood

Women are twice as likely to develop clinical depression as men, yet two-thirds of these women do not do anything to combat these feelings. The release of norepinephrine, dopamine and serotonin during resistance training chemically helps exercisers acheive a feeling of well-being. Weight training also leads to an increase in energy, better sleep patterns, and a feeling of accomplishment and control.

6. Improve posture

Combat a kyphotic (hunched over) posture by strengthening the backside of the body. Proper posture leads to injury prevention and better power transfer in athletics. Plus, you just look better when you stand up straight.

7. Shape without the bulk

Due to their lower levels of testosterone, it is very difficult for women to develop large, bulky muscles. Instead of the bulk, most women tend to build a nice hourglass figure—curves we can be proud of!

8. Move better for longer

By strengthening muscles and improving bone density, women who spend time in the weight room are typically active for longer periods of time. Increased hip and leg strength aid in mobility and balance, and upper-body strength helps combat postural issues that can lead to back and shoulder injuries.

9. Become a better athlete

Gone are the days when coaches worried that lifting weights would build bulky muscles that would weigh down athletes. Strength training can lead to better functional movement, explosive power, durability and, of course, greater overall strength.

In conclusion

As often as we talk about all of these benefits,  still 9 out of 10 women do training because they want a better butt. What is the best way to achieve a better butt? Squats. Lunges. Strength training. Period.

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Weight loss or fitness: Lean and fit, not thin and lanky

Nowadays, people are more aware about health and fitness than ever before. But we are constantly bombarded with information and this can lead to misconceptions. Most of us desire to be thin and may end up taking the “easy” way, which may have severe repercussions on our bodies and our health.

What is fitness?

The first step to developing an effective fitness program and to achieving optimum health, is to understand that fitness and nutrition are two sides of the same coin. A fit body is one that has cardiovascular fitness, muscle endurance, strength, flexibility and optimal body composition. Most of the time, we fail to consider this and only concentrate on losing weight. But it is important to remember that losing weight and having a good body composition is not the same thing.

What is body composition?

Body composition is the right proportion of fat and muscle in your body. But the number we see on our scale can cause confusion. One must understand that body weight is made up of skeletal mass, muscles, organs, water, body fluids and fat.

In today’s world, with significant improvements in technology, body weight is an archaic concept. If you weigh a lot, do not be alarmed, but if you have a high percentage of fat in your body you may need to worry. You need to consider that muscle mass is heavier/denser than fat. A seemingly thin body frame with a low body weight should be considered a sign of poor health ONLY if the muscle mass is low. Understand that irrespective of shape and size what is important is to have less fat and more muscle in your body – this is what defines health in very simple terms.

Therefore achieving the right body composition should be the first goal for everyone. The only way to accomplish this goal is by incorporating a good workout and eating healthy food into your everyday lifestyle.

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Lyen Wong’s 39th birthday workout

Watch international figure competitor, fitness model and and personal trainer Lyen Wong do her annual birthday workout. It’s her 39th this year…

Lyen also does individual birthday workouts with our clients if they’re lucky (or foolish) enough to come in for a training session on their special day!

 

The video was filmed at our new Small Group Personal Training studio in Miami. Special thanks to Patrick A. Frey, CSCS who came up with the idea first!

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The importance of posture in your workout

Working out at PEAK PHYSIQUE & PERFORMANCEEach January, people flock to gyms and training programs, determined to get in shape, return to fitness and lose weight. Then: ouch! A hurt, an ache, an injury. Or, alas, no results. Often, that is due to bad alignment and bad posture.

Q: What does proper body alignment mean in terms of working out?

Proper body alignment means maintaining good posture and core stability, no matter what movement or exercise you are performing.

Q: Why is proper posture important when you’re in the gym?

Good posture has been proven to improve all levels of human performance. Studies show that when you are aligned, your body moves with less effort and mobility, stability and strength improves — and you become more efficient at transferring energy and strength up and down the kinetic chain (foot-to-ankle-to-knee-to-hips-to-spine-to-scapula-to-shoulders-to-arms). Therefore, stress of training stays within the muscles of your body and reduces joint stress and injury.

Q: Any advice to people headed to the gym about body alignment that can help them avoid injury?

Be aware that your body will mold to the posture you are in at the end of a rep. Ask yourself…is that what I want to look like? Compare how closed and slumped forward you look finishing a front fly to how open and tall you look at the end range of a reverse fly.

Also, one of the most important moves to master in fitness is a proper hip hinge. Most movements in core and posture training (squat, lunge, etc) involve moving properly from the hips, instead of rounding forward and using your back, which is the cause of many low back injuries in training and sports.

Interview with Dr. Brown

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Article: Effects of rapid weight loss on your body

Magazines and websites everywhere want to tell you how shed weight quickly or, even better, “melt” your fat off either through diet or exercise. But they leave out the negative effect that quick weight loss has on your body. We all want to lose weight in a hurry but we hate to break it to you: the only ‘quick’ solutions to weight loss are usually unhealthy. Are you aware of the effects of rapid weight loss on your body? Let’s find out.

  1. Cellulite – The term cellulite refers to the appearance of dimpled skin on your abdomen, thighs, buttocks and hips. Weight gain and loss are one of the reasons for cellulite.
  2. Weight gain – We may lose weight quickly with intense ‘dieting’, but your body tries to accumulate calories when it lacks sufficient vitamins and minerals. The practice of not eating only does more harm than good.
  3. Malnutrition – This is common sense, lack of a balanced diet will lead to malnutrition.
  4. Makes you hungry – If you haven’t eaten after a long time, do you feel like eating fried and oily food? That’s exactly what happens if you starve yourself.
  5. Lack of energy – fainting – Lack of nutritious food equals lack of energy. Feeling tired? Eat a healthy meal.
  6. Hair loss – Lack of protein and nutrients can lead to hair loss. Your body needs food to regenerate cells.
  7. Depression, lack of sex drive and irritation are some emotions you will face.

Bottom line: Don’t be fooled with quick weight loss diets. Effective weight loss is a combination of exercise and diet, the healthy way. Weight loss is not a piece of cake!

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