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how to fix muscle imbalances

How to Correct Muscle Imbalance

When you’re trying to get rid of your soft belly or excess fat on the back of your arms, targeting only those specific areas is almost impossible. Losing weight is a process during which you might experience some asymmetry until you lower the percentage of your body mass index and shed excess fat across the board. The same principle applies to muscle growth. Once you start lifting weights, your muscles will grow, but you might encounter some imbalances due to several reasons. Aside from an aesthetic point of view, correcting muscle imbalance is vital because of potential injuries that can occur due to lack of adequate joint support. Today we are going to talk about how to fix muscle imbalances, but let’s start by covering why they occur in the first place.

What Causes Muscle Imbalances

Common muscle imbalances happen due to a couple of reasons. For example, each one of us has a dominant side so let’s say you are right-handed and are exercising with a barbell. You need both hands to lift a barbell, but because your right hand is more dominant, you’ll be contracting your right side more than your left. We all tend to do this subconsciously, and as a result, end up with asymmetric muscles.

Another reason why we might experience muscle imbalances is due to the nature of our workplace. Most people who have a 9 to 5 office job remain in a seated position for an extended period of time. This can affect your posture and create imbalances. The muscles surrounding the hip joint are especially susceptible to imbalances if you tend to spend a lot of hours in a sedentary position.

If you’re a novice in the gym, you might not be familiar with a diverse number of exercises. Performing the same exercises that target specific muscle groups more than others can easily lead to imbalances. For instance, activating your pectorals more often than your lats can result in bad posture and rounded shoulders.

Worried you might have uneven muscles? Complete a simple test and find out.

Muscle Imbalance Test

Face the mirror sideways, take your shirt off and look at your posture. If your shoulders are leaning forward and you can see your upper-back, your chest muscles and your back muscles are of unequal strength and need to be corrected. While you’re standing in front of the mirror, check if your stomach protrudes forward and if your pelvis is slightly tilted. This can also be an indicator of muscle imbalances.

Fixing Muscle Imbalances

Aside from hard work and commitment, you’ll need a few tried and tested methods to fix your muscle imbalances. Here is our advice:

  • When performing exercises, concentrate on activating your less dominant side.
  • Choose unilateral exercises and do more reps with your weaker side.
  • Watch your posture when spending countless hours slouching in your chair and take every opportunity to stand up and move.
  • Work on your hip mobility by stretching them out and focus on diverse exercise programs.
  • Use mirrors and monitor your movement. Make sure your performing exercises in the correct form.
  • Be consistent and make sure to follow a specially designed program. Don’t skip certain muscle groups just because you enjoy chest day more than leg day.

Are you seeking help in correcting your posture? Here at Peak Physique & Performance, we can give you our undivided attention and work closely with you in overcoming muscle imbalance. To achieve all your fitness goals this year, keep up with our blog and follow our advice.

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Advantages Personal Trainer

Advantages Personal Trainer Can Provide

This is the year. The year you sit down and finally make a promise to yourself that you’re going to set your fitness goals high and fully commit to achieving them.

You’ve made a list, a long term plan, bought new gym clothes, even made a dedicated calendar with little to no rest days, but it might all be in vain. Besides, it’s not the first time you’ve made all the necessary preparations and pledged to get in shape and become the best you. However, you never quite manage to stick to the plan, so you end up running into a brick wall.

What could you possibly do to garner different results this time around?

What you might need is a little bit of help, a push in the right direction. Someone to guide you on your journey to fitness excellence. You might need a personal trainer, and here’s why.

What Does A Personal Trainer Do

The basic notion is that personal trainers are there to demonstrate exercises and workout routines to their clients who have no idea what they are doing in the gym. But, you might ask yourself – do I need a personal trainer if I’m already familiar with how to perform certain exercises and have an idea which muscle groups to combine? If you’re looking to achieve the best possible results in the least amount of time, then the answer will undoubtedly be — yes.

Personal trainers are much more than just a person who will help you perfect your form. They are your support system — they keep you accountable and committed. They are entirely focused on carrying you to the finish line. Going to the gym casually does not necessarily require a personal trainer, but if you’ve been leaving your blood, sweat, and tears, and the results are just not there, or you are setting back from getting injured, consider hiring a professional to help you.

At Peak Physique & Performance we are more than trainers — we teach our clients! We are personal trainers familiar with your needs.

Personal Trainer Has Valuable Knowledge

Educating yourself on the internet about different ways to workout will put you on the right path, but will only get you so far.

Personal trainers are certified for having extensive knowledge in the field of fitness and know all the nuances of creating a good workout regimen. What works for someone’s body type does not mean it will work for you, but thanks to personal trainers, you won’t have to worry about that. They will use their knowledge to create a workout plan that is specifically tailored to you and only you. As long as you listen to their advice and follow the plan they made for you, the results will follow.

Personal Trainer Can Help You Eat Right

Not only will personal trainers encourage you to maintain a healthy eating routine, but they will also help you plan your meals. Being experts in nutrition, personal trainers can tell you what to eat and when to eat it. Just eating the right macronutrients is not enough to achieve your fitness goals. Knowing when to eat fats, carbs, and proteins is essential to giving your body the necessary fuel in order to exert the maximum potential out of your workouts.

Personal Trainer Will Motivate You

Admit it, the hardest thing about working out is waking up in the morning or finishing a long day at work and hitting the gym when you’re either tired or still sore from your last session. It’s much easier just to postpone your workout for tomorrow… or next week. This is where the additional motivation comes in handy.

Not only will personal trainers motivate you to always give your best effort in the gym, but the fact that you know you have a one-on-one session scheduled will be another reason to get out of bed.

So what do you think? Do you need some assistance to reach your goals? If you’re looking to hire a personal trainer in Miami, we’ll be more than happy to acquaint you with our highly qualified and experienced personal trainers that can help you with your fitness needs. Reach out to Peak Physique & Performance, today!

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working out while pregnant

Workouts to do While Pregnant

Future moms all have the same question – is it safe to exercise while pregnant?

Not only is working out while pregnant safe but it’s also desirable due to several health benefits and exercises that can help alleviate some of the back pain that is associated with pregnancy. That being said, caution is advised, and we recommend adjusting your workouts to fit your new state.

Even though the simple answer is yes, there are still a couple of things to consider before hitting the gym with full intensity. Today we’re going to discuss how much exercise is too much, and look into some safe and healthy exercises for pregnancy.

How Much Can You Work out While Pregnant?

Physical activity during pregnancy can be amazing for your overall health and can help you handle the inevitable symptoms that come with childbearing. However, a woman’s body goes through drastic weight and hormone changes that can affect when and how she exercises.

The amount of impact the aforementioned can have on your regular workout routine is individual due to every woman handling pregnancy differently. Some women might experience some symptoms more regularly and more intensely than others, which can hinder their ability to work out.

For example, some women feel nauseous in the morning, some in the evening, and some rarely ever experience it. Depending on when and how you handle nausea will determine the best time to exercise.

Also, the amount of body weight you gain can differ from case to case. The weight gain won’t be that significant in the first few months, but at one point, it will affect your ability to do cardio exercises like running or jogging.

So, how much exercise is too much? Generally speaking, in absence of contradictions, pregnant women are advised to get at least 30 minutes per day of moderate-intensity activity on most, if not all, days of the week. If you have previously been very active, we suggest you tone down your workout routine and stick to medium intensity exercises which do not require sudden changes in direction.

Here are some of the exercises you can do at the gym or at your own home. Mix these with walking and swimming (if you are an experienced swimmer). If you feel fatigued, dizzy, or just need to lay down, stop exercising immediately and consult your physician.

Exercises to Do While Pregnant

  • The Plie Squat

This exercise will significantly improve your balance and is terrific for firing up all your lower body (quads, hamstrings, and glutes) and core muscles. It is a very functional exercise, and it helps to open a woman’s hips in preparation for labor. It is considered a very safe exercise to perform throughout pregnancy because it keeps the pelvis in a stable position with weight equally distributed on both feet.

Start by assuming a standing position with your feet facing away from each other and slightly wider than hip-width apart. Slowly bend your knees and move to a squat position while keeping your inner core muscles active. Once you feel those quadriceps burning, slowly return to your starting position, that’s one rep.

  • Planking

Planking is a great stabilization exercise that will strengthen your core, shoulders, arms, and glutes.

To assume a planking position, you’ll need to lay down on your yoga mat and set your elbows under your shoulders. Then you’ll want to lift your knees and straighten your body to form a straight line from head to feet. Keep proper core engagement and neutral spine alignment the entire time while holding the position. Take a few breaths and return to your starting position.

Be ready to regress the exercise when you have difficulty engaging or you start struggling or breaking the form.

  • Side-Lying Leg Lift

If you’re looking to strengthen your inner and outer thighs, then this is definitely the exercise for you.

Start by laying on the side with your supporting arm under your head, your top arm on your hip, and your top leg extended. Slowly raise your top leg in the air while keeping your hip steady and your back straight. Avoid sudden moves and rotations.

Try out these three exercises and let us know how they work for you. One final word, when exercising during pregnancy, the most important thing to remember is to always listen to your body!

If you need more advice on how to exercise in general or have any questions regarding fitness, reach out to our team at Peak Physique & Performance, today! We are happy to help!

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exercise for women over 40

Fourties Are the New Thirties: Make Your Workout Effective

Your forties can be the new thirties as long as you take care of your body and stay physically active. However, there is a big difference between just exercising and exercising the right way.

The more we age, the more we are prone to gaining weight, having various hormonal imbalances, low-thyroid function, and the list goes on. Cortisol spikes become a frequent occurrence, along with insulin resistance, and generally, the feeling of drowsiness. This can affect not only our performance in the gym, but also our everyday life, and how we look and feel.

Another thing that comes with age is wisdom. You want to be wise about the way you approach your workout. Listen to your body, adjust accordingly, and train smarter. If you don’t know where to start, we can help you with some advice and an exercise program for women over 40.

Keep Moving And Stay Consistent

As we age, gaining weight becomes a problem due to our metabolism slowing down significantly. To combat this, make sure you’re staying physically active as often as possible. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a full training session every single day of the week. As long as you squeeze a minimum of 30 minutes three to four times per week, and break a sweat, you will be safe. Attempt to mix weight lifting, some type of cardio, and stretching.

Trainning

High-Quality Sleep Is Essential

When life gets busy, the first thing we resort to is sacrificing our sleep. While we can get away with cutting our sleeping hours when we are younger, getting your 8 hours of rest is more important than ever when you reach a certain age. Giving your body enough time to recover is key to combating fatigue and being able to keep up with your workout regimen.

Exercises for Beautiful Legs

Here are two great exercises that will keep you in shape.

  • Squats

Squats focus on your quads and hamstrings, giving you that much-needed leg strength. Having strong legs will take some load off the ligaments and joints.

Keep your feet flat against the floor and your chest high as you go down into a squat. Don’t worry about going too deep, just work through the range of motion that suits you.

15 to 20 reps

  • Lunges

This exercise will give your hips a nice stretch and improve their flexibility. Besides the obvious glutes, quads, and hamstrings involvement lunges fire up your core muscles which are vital in supporting your entire body and improving your overall stability.

While performing lunges focus on keeping your back straight and your front knee in line with your toes. If you have the right technique, challenge this exercise by doing walking lunges

3 sets of 10 reps

Need more exercises to complete your workout regimen? Want to find out how to properly execute them? Check out Peak Physique & Performance blog section where we regularly publish articles and share tips on health, fitness, and nutrition.

We are a Miami-based fitness studio that focuses on personal training sessions with a unique approach to fitness. With our help, achieving your goals is easier than ever.

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warm up exercises

Great Warm-Up Exercises

Regardless of what age group you fall into, hitting the gym twice a week, and establishing a few healthy habits along the way, is key to leading an active lifestyle.

However, there are no shortcuts to obtaining good health and an admirable level of fitness. Just as you wouldn’t want to skip a meal, you also shouldn’t skip warming up before lifting weights or doing any kind of exercise. No matter if you are a teenager or past your prime, doing a few fun warm-up exercises will set the tone for your workout and prevent potential injuries from happening.

The goal of these warm-up techniques is to increase body temperature, increase your heart rate, lubricate your joints, and prime your muscles for the workout ahead.

Here are a few warming up ideas that will get you fired up and ready for an efficient training session.

Four Fun Warm-Up Exercises

  • Walking Lunge

The walking lunge will warm up your hamstrings, glutes, and quads, but is also a great way to start up your core muscles and stretch your hips.

When you go down into a lunge position, you want to make sure to keep your spine at a 90-degree angle to the floor. Your front knee should be in line with your toes, while your other knee goes down but does not touch the ground.

You can involve your arms by holding small dumbells, but if that’s too much for you, keep them on your hips. If you’re limited in space, you can perform a static walking lunge exercise.

Number of reps: 10 reps each side.

  • Squats

Another great way to fire up your quads and hamstrings is doing good old squats.

A couple of things to remember while squatting are:

  • keeping your feet flat against the floor as much as you can
  • keeping your chest high
  • focusing your weight on your legs instead of your back or knees

When you assume the squat position, you want your glutes to be in line with your knees. Going deeper is not necessarily a bad thing, but you want to get down the basics first and execute the squatting motion properly, so try and keep everything parallel.

Keep your hands in front of your chest. They will aid you in balancing your body.

Number of reps: 14

  • Walk-Outs

This exercise will activate some crucial muscle groups while giving you a nice stretch at the same time. Depending on your level of fitness, you can perform it faster or slower.

Start by placing your feet at hip width and slowly bend over. Use your hands to “walk out” to a plank position and hold there for a few seconds. This will engage your core, especially your abs. From the plank position slowly crawl back in the neutral position, and repeat.

Number of reps: 8

  • Jumping Jacks

Finally, star jumps will skyrocket your heart rate and put you in fifth gear for your workout session. Star jumps are super popular both as group warm-up exercises and as an individual exercise.

To properly execute a jumping jack you want to start with your feet together and your arms at the sides. Keep your back straight and perform a jump with the legs spread wide and your arms touching overhead.

Number of reps: 10

Now you have a better idea on how to warm up properly and assure your body is primed and ready for a great workout. That being said, everyone has a unique body and a different fitness level. Some of these exercises might be too easy, too hard for you, or not recommended, meaning that you’re either overworking yourself before even starting your training session, or not warming up enough, exposing your body to potential injuries.

We suggest you listen to your body, adjust the reps accordingly, or find the appropriate modification for you. If you really want to find out what works best for you, our experienced personal trainers can design the perfect warm-up regimen for you to follow. Reach out to our team at Peak Physique & Performance today, to start training with a proper warm-up routine.

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Review: “…we’re thrilled with the approach to fitness.”

woman_orange_square“We discovered Lyen Wong’s fitness studio, Peak Physique & Performance, several years ago when we first moved to Miami from Austria. After one visit to the well-equipped studio and a meeting with Lyen, we signed up for an early morning (6:30am!) weekly fitness program and have been thrilled by the “holistic” approach that Lyen and her team use! Not only are the fitness workouts tailored to our specific needs and age group, but they are conducted in such a way as to motivate us and keep us coming back week after week! With the PPP core and weight training, the endurance workouts, the increased flexibility and the great stretching exercises, we have found a true “fitness partner” in Miami! Thank you, Lyen and team!”

Christophe and Verena

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Review: “…one of the most talented personal trainers I have ever worked with.”

“Lyen is one of the most talented personal trainers I have ever worked with. I was in Miami for a 3 week vacation and decided based on recommendations to train with Lyen. What immediately impressed me was that she quickly accessed my level of fitness and designed a workout regimen that targeted areas of weakness. I have a bad knee and so do limited leg work. She came up with a program to strengthen the leg without inflaming the knee by putting too much pressure on it. I ended the vacation a lot fitter and with a better ability to keep training on my own.

In addition to training me, she organized a fun workout session for a large group of friends visiting with me. We all enjoyed her enthusiasm and cheerfulness. I highly recommend Lyen as a personal trainer.”

Anil P.

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Awesome January bootcamp specials at PPP!

We’re making your training experience more adventurous, interesting and challenging with our special 75 min. bootcamp classes every Saturday during the month of January. Don’t miss it!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What you’ll get:
  • Warm up: yoga salutations (10 min)
  • Strength and endurance: dumbbells, bands and body weight training (30 min)
  • Cardio intervals: heavy ropes, jump ropes, calisthenics (20 min)
  • Cooldown/stretching: yoga poses/savasana (15 min)
WHEN: Saturday, Jan. 6th, 13th, 20th, and 27th
WHERE: “Peak Physique and Performance”, 350 NE 24th St, Miami, FL 33137
TIME: Choose from two available times:
• 10 am – 11:15 am
• 11:30 am – 12:45 pm

 

RSVP by email today! Limited space!
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