Calorie nutrient tracker-for optimal nutrition

When it comes to nutrition and dieting, many people feel that they don’t have the time, it’s not only a lot of work going to the gym and getting a workout in but to keep track of all those endless calories and the thought of trying to keep track of them kind of scares many people away, so they figure it would be easier to skip the whole nutrition thing and only eat whatever is handy.

If more people could take the time to realize that if they could take just a little bit of extra time to plan a healthier diet, they might be spending a little less time in the doctors office in the future. So that brings up the discussion of today’s subject, calorie and nutrient tracking for optimal nutrition and getting the most out of using the tools you need for getting on the right track for a healthier tomorrow.

A measure of energy 

Calories are simply a measure of energy. A calorie is the amount of energy required to raise the temperature of one kilogram of water by one degree Celsius. So naturally it stands to reason that when you are active for a long enough duration to sweat you are burning away excess calories, those excess calories are stored as fat, so you will need to keep your fat intake low, consume fewer calories than what it would take to maintain your weight and stay active enough to burn any excess calories that are stored as fat.

We all know that counting calories and limiting our intake of food can be an effective tool in weight loss but it’s also being aware of what foods we need to cut out of our diet and having the will power to follow through with staying clear from these foods.

Then there are other factors that we need to keep in mind, if you are going to get some idea of how many calories you need to burn every day to lose a pound of fat, you are going to need to know how many calories it will take to maintain your weight, then there are other factors like gender, age, weight and activity level.

Click on this link to find out how many calories you need per day to lose weight

Nutrient tracking 

Nutrient tracking is a process of collecting information from your dietary intake for the purpose of reaching a goal. I feel that a very useful tool for collecting this information is a journal, you can go with the hand written or there is the option of a digital app. To get you going on this simply document the foods you eat, how much you eat and how many times you eat in a day and what time of the day you eat, and your beverage consumption.

Another good idea to keep track of is how you feel about what you have eaten throughout the day. This way if you fall away from what you had written down as your dietary plan, you will naturally feel a little guilty about this and it may just give you that little edge the next day to keep on track with your dietary plans, but that isn’t to say that you can’t have a cheat meal now and then.

Having a cheat meal is something you can build into your journal, this way it will be set in writing when you have a cheat meal and when you have one, you won’t feel guilty because it is part of your structured plan.

From information that you have so diligently gathered together in your journal, you can calculate how things balance out between macronutrients and micronutrients, then you can identify areas that are out of balance or where you might find any deficiencies.

Other forms of tracking 

The tape measure is another form of tracking progress, measuring the waist circumference and the waist to hip ratio.

The waist to hip ratio is usually related to physical attractiveness. A waist to hip ratio of 0.7 is considered optimal for a woman because it is a sign of fertility. Women sought after for their bodies have all had a similar difference of 7 inches between their waist and hips. 

The body fat calipers can be another useful tool for measuring body fat distribution. A calipers calculates body fat by pulling fat away from the muscle creating skin folds. The calipers is used to measure the folds lengths at different sites, generally three sites are taken and they are taken on the right side of the body.

The measurements are taken into two equations. The tester will have a reliable estimate of the person’s body fat percentage. A person can test themselves, although it is recommended that a professional does the testing.

Eating healthy 

Eating healthy should always be a person’s first priority when it comes to optimal performance and nutrition. Keeping fat low and fueling yourself with a diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables, lean white meat and drink plenty of water to keep yourself hydrated.

When measuring calories, most people don’t want to take the time to count through all those endless calories and food scales don’t always make the job easier and they’re not always that accurate.

Portion your food, for example you have lean white chicken breast baked, portion it to no more than the size of a deck of cards, portion a serving of veggies to no larger than the palm of your hand.

Where many people make the mistake is they have a tendency to over portion, somehow there eyes become larger than their stomachs. Eat slowly, this helps the food to digest better and you won’t have a tendency to overeat. If you eat slower, you will likely find yourself satisfied and still have food left on your plate. Another trick is to drink water before your meal, you will likely find yourself eating less.

Conclusion

I hope this article finds you well and eager to get a fresh start on a healthier lifestyle, a fresh start on a cleaner leaner diet and a new zest for life with some new goals to pursue.

I don’t expect that people will drop everything and start counting calories, that’s unnecessary, all you should try every day is portion what you eat and if you have a cheat day, try to portion that as well, if you go a little overboard, go an extra mile with your cardio.

If you like the idea of getting your body fat percentage checked with a calipers, have a professional do this, they will give you a more accurate reading.

For the women reading this, the waist to hip ratio is just a statistical number, their are many body types and everybody shouldn’t be expected to look like someone else.

Just try your best to eat healthy and to take care of yourself and do your best to keep up with a daily exercise regimen.

Only you know what your capabilities are and do the best that you can, you owe it to yourself to.

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below.

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Gold’s Gym XRS 55 home gym system review

Gold's gym XRS 55 home gym.

Gold’s Gym XRS 55 home gym system

Manufacturer-ICON Health and Fitness

This product review is an endorsement for Amazon, if you click on the affiliate link and purchase a product, I will receive a small commission, but at no additional cost.

 

 

Today I would like to talk about a great home gym that I think is a real good piece of home equipment, especially for those days when it’s tough to make it to the gym. Then there are some of you that don’t like working out at a gym and would rather workout in the privacy of your own home.

Well, this durable piece of workout equipment is exactly what you are looking for if you are interested in working out and doing it in your own home where you don’t have to stand in line and wait to get your next set in, then this Gold’s Gym XRS 55 home gym system is just what you’re looking for.

Ideal for strength training 

The Gold’s Gym home gym system offers full body strength training if your interested in just toning up your muscles or if you want to give your muscles an all out assault. It features a variety of strength training exercises that will allow you to build strength in your upper body and lower body.

It’s just like training at the gym, you don’t go to only train upper body and completely forget about training your legs, it’s important to get a full workout and train the whole package, that’s why the Gold’s Gym home gym system also comes with a leg apparatus so you can fully train your legs working the quads with leg extensions and the hamstrings with leg curls.

Gold’s home gym durability 

There is one thing that I always look for in a home gym, is durability. Gold’s Gym equipment is known for its standard of excellence, they would never sell themselves short by turning out equipment that didn’t stand up to their specifications, precision pulleys and bearings make every movement smooth and fluid.

Padded adjustable vinyl seats offer support and comfort and you can change up your workout with the multi grip lat-bar that comes included, plus you also get the adjustable preacher pad and row plate.

Some additional features are a 125 lb vinyl weight stack, adjustable padded seat, adjustable preacher pad, multi position lat-bar and precision system components.

Gold’s gym background

The bodybuilding authority since 1965, Gold’s Gym is the original southern California bodybuilding gym founded by Joe Gold. Based on that history and experience, the ICON of health and fitness has developed Gold’s Gym home gym’s, weight training equipment, cardiovascular training equipment and more, all of which offer, a gym quality, total body workout.

What Gold’s Gym equipment has to offer can be enjoyed by everyone, yes, those with busy schedules and all in the comfort and privacy of your own home at any hour of the day or night.

 Features

The Gold’s Gym home gym features a combo chest press/butterfly arm, 330 lbs maximum resistance, high and low pulleys, 4 role leg developer, manufacturers warranty included.

Assembled dimensions 77″L x 43″ w x 82.5″h.

*Item may ship in more than 1 box and may arrive separately.

*125 lb vinyl weight stack.

*Combination chest press/fly station.

*4 foam leg developer, upper and lower pulley, padded adjustable vinyl seat.

*Workout accessories included, lat bar, strap with handle,preacher pad, row plate.

*300 lb weight capacity, 90 day warranty.

*Product information, black/yellow/gray.

Designed for versatility

This makes for a great home gym, you can design a real good workout based around the Gold’s Gym home gym. This home gym comes with a chest press and a butterfly station which are both great for working chest and if you like giving your muscles a workout with super sets, the chest press and butterflies work great together.

The lat apparatus designed for lat pull downs is great for working the back. The lat pull downs give your back the appearance of that v shape. You can also use the lat apparatus for triceps push downs. I also like using the lat apparatus for cable pull overs.

The leg apparatus is great for developing the thigh muscles. The Gold’s Gym home gym comes with the 4 foam leg developer, the leg extensions work the quad muscles (front of the thigh) leg extensions are not a great exercise for building large quads but they give your leg muscles a great workout and they definitely do their job when it comes to creating shapely thigh muscles.

When it comes to developing the back of your thighs (hamstrings) the leg curls do a beautiful job of doing just that. A well developed, shapely set of hamstrings add the finishing appeal to a developed shapely set of quads.

The pros

The Gold’s Gym home gym  is an excellent  whole gym all in one. It’s well constructed and versatile and built to take the impact of my most strenuous workouts. Built with durability in mind, Gold’s Gym products turns out one of their best pieces of home gym equipment yet, they have my satisfaction, guaranteed.

The cons

The Gold’s Gym home gym is a great piece of equipment and I really enjoy training on this one, but the only things about this piece of equipment is it has a low pulley but there is no cable row attachment, so to make up for this little setback, I sit in position, facing toward the Gold’s Gym home gym, grasp the lat pull down bar, lean way back and do cable rows in this manner and I find this does a great job.

One other downfall about the Gold’s Gym home gym is the warranty is for only 90 days, odds are if something breaks it wouldn’t be until after the 90 days and the cables will tend to wear out especially if you use it every day, but all in all, I have never found any equipment for my home gym that didn’t have some kind of downfall.

Conclusion

If you are interested in starting a home gym or adding on to it, I would recommend that you find something that you are comfortable using, that is versatile and durable and from my experience the Gold’s Gym home gym delivers just that.

I believe the price for this home gym is a steal for all that it offers,  but if you are looking to build a massive physique of a pro bodybuilder, it would be best to get a gym membership for a wider range of equipment, but for those days that you just can’t get to the gym or if you simply want to workout in the privacy of your own home, I think that the Gold’s Gym XRS 55 home gym system is an excellent alternative.

If you have any questions concerns or comments, feel free to leave them below.

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Best workout program for rock hard abs-sixpack abs by summer

That seems to be one of the top ongoing goals for the realm of fitness is getting a six pack, no , I don’t mean a six pack of beer, six pack abs is the must-have by summer time.

working the abdominals helps to strengthen your core, it’s good to cover a variety of exercises so that you can reach all angles of the abdominals region. If you want to get this area in shape and you are interested in bringing those abs out for everyone to see, you still have three months to get them in shape before summer comes creeping up around the corner.

In today’s subject we are going to discuss some of the best exercises for developing the abs, how many times per week you should train them and following a good diet to make them abs stand out if you are looking for the best workout program for rock hard abs and getting those six pack abs by summer.

Bicycle crunch

The first exercise that I will talk about is the bicycle crunch, when doing floor exercises such as this one, it’s best to use a floor mat, they will give you a little more cushion than doing them on the floor, a rug can give some cushion but nothing like using a floor mat. Another idea you can try, especially if you have lower back problems is to roll up a bath towel and place it under your low back area to help give support and keep an arch in your spine.

When doing the bicycle crunch you can either hold your arms in front of you or your hands behind your head, holding your hands behind your head will put more tension on your abdominals, so if you’re new to working abs and haven’t quite built up strength in this area it would be best to start out with your arms in front of you.

First you start by lying on your back, when you crunch forward, twist at the abdomen extending your right elbow forward simultaneously bringing your left knee towards your chest, then alternate, lowering your left leg while raising your right knee to your chest while crunching forward leading with your left elbow.

Muscles involved in the bicycle crunch are the rectus abdominis, the front sheath of the abs that make up the six pack muscles

Cross crunch  

The cross crunch is pretty similar to the bicycle crunch but the slight variation can stress your abs in a slightly different angle.

Start by lying on your back with your arms out to your sides, while raising your right leg keeping a slight bend at the knee to take tension off your lower back, crunch forward raising your left arm stretched forward toward your toes, lower back to starting position, alternate and raise your left leg while raising your right arm stretched forward toward your toes.

Muscles involved in the cross crunch are the obliques located on the sides of the abdomen.

Leg raises

The leg raises are a pretty common exercise for the abs but they are great for working the lower abs and there are a couple of variations to this one which will help from keeping your workout from getting dull.

This is another exercise where you will be lying on your back, keep your arms at your sides with the palms of your hands on the floor for stability, while keeping a slight bend to your knees to keep tension off your lower back, slowly raise your legs keeping them together until your toes are pointing upwards, slowly lower and repeat.

Other variations to the leg raises, instead of keeping your legs straight, you raise your legs bending your knees, bringing your knees towards your chest or another variation, you can keep your legs straight but alternating from one leg to the other. Another variation for the leg raises you can put an exercise ball between your ankles, this variation will help with tightening the inner thighs.

Muscles involved in the leg raises are the lower abs. Sometimes the lower abs can be a little tougher to reach but the leg raises are sure to reach this area.

Knee to chest stretch

The knee to chest stretch isn’t a real direct exercise for working the abs but it’s a good one to help with tightening the abs if it’s done in the right way.

Start out by lying on your back with your arms at your sides, raise your knees to your chest, grasp your knees with your hands and gently pull your knees in tighter towards your chest. This will stretch the back of your thighs, (hamstrings) while you pull your knees towards your chest, concentrate on pulling your abdominal muscles in as far as you can and hold this position for a count of ten.

Slowly lower your legs to a count of five, as you lower your legs, really concentrate on the abdominal muscles working. Once your legs reach the floor, stop just short of your legs resting on the floor, this will help to keep tension on your abs really making them muscles work, then repeat the process.

Muscles involved in the knee to chest stretch are the lower back, hamstrings, glutes and abs.

Following the right diet  

What’s the best diet for bringing that six pack out? It will need to be real low in fat, try to stay away from real starchy foods, excess bread, two slices of bread in a day would be more than enough and stay away from processed meats and anything that is high in sodium.

Soda and candy is a absolute no no and pizza might be a tough one but if it’s rock hard abs is what you want then you will need to leave the pizza alone as well.

Garden fresh salads are an excellent choice, as far as that goes, fresh fruits and vegetables should be your staple. Real lean meat like chicken, Turkey, fish and tuna would be your best choices and the best way to prepare them is to bake them, never resort to fried food, it is unhealthy and to high in fat.

Conclusion  

In this article should be a sure fire way to slim and trim your waist line down and carve a six pack that will get head’s turning, but the information here alone will not do the job in itself, you need to have a burning desire to  develop the chiseled waist line of a God and do the hard work, follow a lean diet plan and stick with it.

Another important factor to include is a rigorous cardiovascular program, whether it be cardio equipment at the gym or in your home, bicycling, jogging, swimming or an aerobics class, which ever path you follow, you have to burn of more calories than you take in, the exercises that I covered in this article will firm, tone and chisel your waist line, but you also need cardiovascular to back that up.

I hope that this information will help you in your training goals and help you in achieving a healthy lifestyle, just remember, it all is up to you and if you choose to pursue a healthy way of living.

If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave a reply below.

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Why should I set a goal?-how can it be achieved?

Goals, a powerful tool but many view as a daunting task and some people would never even consider setting a goal because they have no vision or direction in life. Everyone should have some kind of direction in life and if you’re the kind of person that has some place in life that you would like to be, why not consider setting a goal, I think you owe it to yourself.

have you ever dreamed of being accomplished at something that it set you apart from the majority of most other people, but then you reason with yourself, oh, I could never accomplish that, there is no way I could ever get so good at something that others would look up to me as an authority figure, so why should I set a goal? But today I’m going to tell you that, if you can think it, it can be achieved.

So you ask, how can this goal be achieved? do I need to have some special kind of ability to follow through with the demands that this accomplishment is going to ask of me? the answer to that is no, you don’t need some kind of special ability, all you need is a burning desire to have something that you want so bad that you can see it, feel it and have the desire to go after it.

Setting goals, how they can be achieved 

What ever the desire is that burns in you, first and foremost you need to visualize yourself already achieving what it is that’s your hearts desire. Spend some time after you wake up in the morning in a quiet place away from any distractions. Find a comfortable place to sit with your arms at your sides, close your eyes, take a few deep breaths and visualize yourself already attaining your perceived goal.

Concentrate in this relaxed state, repeat over and over to yourself what it is that you want to achieve, visualize in your mind possessing your inner most desires. If your goal is to be successful at a sport, visualize yourself already attaining a metal for all your hard work, hear the applause of the crowd, smell the victory in the air, get a taste of what your new life will be like.

If you repeat these affirmations over and over again, pretty soon you will realize that you have been programming your mind to think like a champion and then your thoughts will become actions and your actions will become reality. All you need to have right now is the desire and the belief in yourself that you can do anything you put your mind to.

Setting your goals high enough

Whether the goal that you want to master is in the field of sports, becoming a well known actor or actress, a musician or you are looking for a formula to make a million dollars, give your goal some thought, you will want to make sure that you set your goals high enough, if you don’t set your goals high enough, the end result may be that you have not reached the point that you had originally planned for.

As the saying goes, “shoot for the stars” it’s better to plan big than not big enough, then if you don’t reach your goal, keep pursuing it, Arnold Schwarzenegger is a great example of someone who loved a challenge, do you think he would have been the kind of person who would have set a goal that was achievable without any doubt and set boundaries and limitations? Schwarzenegger is a man who would never back down from a challenge, he would love a good game and give it his all.

Make your goals come to life

Spend some time on meditation every morning after getting out of bed and every night just before returning to bed. Try to spend at least fifteen minutes per session on some beneficial meditation away from any distractions. It might be a good idea to keep a notepad by your side, this way if you have any profound ideas come to mind during your meditation, you can put them down in writing right along with your goals.

Include on your list of goals, when, how and why, Including these three factors with your goals will make them more personable and will give you more purpose and it will make your goals more persuasive if your mind starts to sway over the coming months.

First you need to determine (when) you would like to arrive at the destination you have set your goal for, determining when will help you in not only coming to a time you have set in achieving your goal, but it will act as a gauge in determining your productivity and if you need to make any changes or tweaks in your performance.

Next you need to determine (how) you plan to arrive at the destination you have set your goal for. This is completely dependent on what your goal is and what your willing to give of yourself in attaining this goal.

And next you need to determine (why) you have set your sights on achieving a goal that makes you stand out from the rest of the crowd. Is it for money? is it for glory? or is it that you just love a good challenge.

Seeing them through

After setting any goal, it’s necessary to follow it through, if you set a goal to achieve a greater level for something that you have passion for, then it’s evident that what you have your sights set on is important enough to set a goal for, so then it should be important enough to follow it through. After all, no one is going to pursue your goal for you.

You need to be specific about what your goals are, you need to have a clear and concise plan written down and keep your plan in a place that you will see frequently every day and you need to keep them clear in your mind to feed your thoughts positive energy to have the best possible outcome.

That’s why it is important to meditate on your thoughts and plans first thing after getting up in the morning, this is a time that you are preparing your mind for the day and you are training your mind to think on a level that is more resistant to acceptance of failure, it is your subconscious mind that you are taping into and the power of the subconscious mind is phenomenal.

Before turning in for the night is an important time of day to follow a plan of meditation, it relaxes and prepares your mind for sleep. This period of time that you sleep, your subconscious mind is more at work than in the awake hours, the subconscious mind draws upon the forces of infinite intelligence.

You can not entirely control your subconscious mind, but you can voluntarily hand over to it any plan, desire or purpose that you wish to transform into a reality.

Conclusion  

I hope that I have covered some sound information that you can use in transforming the desires of your heart into reality. Remember that with any dream there is a thought, with any thought there should be it’s equivalent plan followed up by an action, then when there is action set forth becomes reality. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. 

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Developing muscular shoulders-through resistance training

It has always been a fascination of mine to build barn door wide deltoid’s. Having those wide shoulders and a narrow waist line I have found to be a manly attribute, it even creates the appearance of looking taller. Many men over the years have sought out ways to create the appearance of being broader in the shoulders. Cartoon characters are even depicted as having huge shoulders that over power the rest of their mildly built physique.

There are a lot of great exercises that you can incorporate into a shoulder workout, compound movements like shoulder presses and upright rows are great for building size, lateral moves are great for working each individual head. Today I will be talking about developing muscular shoulders through resistance training and the exercises that train each head of the shoulders for a well rounded training program.

BARBELL PRESSES

Barbell presses, or another name for them, (military presses) are when you hold the barbell at your shoulders and press the weight overhead, this is a good  combination move that for the most part works the front head of the shoulders, (the anterior head) there is also some triceps and chest that come into play when performing this move.

Another exercise similar to the barbell presses is the press behind the neck, this exercise is performed in the same fashion except you lower the weight to the back of the head. Lowering the weight to the back of the head stresses the shoulder at a different angle, this is good to switch exercises around so your workout dosen’t become stale. Another variation you can do in place of barbell presses are dumbbell presses.

Upright rows

The upright rows is another great combination move, this one stresses the side head of the shoulders, (medial head) with a little bit of biceps and traps involved. Start with holding the barbell in front of you, shoulder width grip, slowly raise the weight up to your chin, elbows out, then slowly lower and repeat. Another variation to this is the narrow grip upright rows, these stress the trap muscles. And again, instead of using the barbell for upright rows, you can use dumbbells for upright rows, this makes for more of a variety for your shoulder workout.

Side lateral’s

The side lateral’s are an isolation move good for isolating the side head of the shoulders, (medial head) start by holding a pair of dumbbells at your sides, with a slight bend to your elbows, slowly raise the dumbbells to your sides so that the dumbbells are at an even plain with your head, and while raising the weights, slightly tilt your thumbs downward as though you were pouring a pitcher of water.

YOU can also do a variation of this move with a low pulley. Using cables is a great way to mix up your workout so you can get a wide variety of exercises to stress your shoulders from all different directions.

Rear lateral raises

Rear lateral raises work the rear deltoid, (posterior head) you can do these either standing or sitting, I prefer to do them in the seated position. Start by learning forward, grabbing a pair of dumbbells, you raise the weights to the rear, keeping a slight bend in the elbows. When raising the weights to the rear, you want to make it a slow deliberate motion, not jerking the weights back or using the lower back to hoist the weights back.

Raise the weights back as far as you can go while squeezing the rear deltoid flexing the muscle then lower the weights slowly until you are back to the starting position. Another variation in place of dumbbells are the low cables.

If you have access to, two pulley machines, one on each side of you, you can do rear laterals with both arms, crossing cables at the bottom position. Some gyms have machines that are designed to do the same function as rear laterals.

Designing a shoulder routine

When designing a shoulder routine, you will want to make sure you cover all three head’s of the shoulder, the front (anterior head) the side (medial head) the rear (posterior head). It’s best to start out with a combination move, one that has more than just the direct muscle coming in to play, for instance a good one to start with is the shoulder presses because other than the front head of the shoulders, you are getting some triceps and chest involvement, combination moves take more energy so it’s best to do these when you have more energy.

After finishing with a over head pressing move, you can fit into your training program upright rows with a shoulder width grip, these work the side head of the shoulders. For extra wide shoulders I like to do a second exercise for the side head of the shoulders, so I do side lateral’s, then I finish of with rear lateral’s for the rear delts.

For shoulders I always push for 8-12 reps each set and 4 sets for each exercise totaling 16 sets for shoulders. I don’t always do each exercise in the same order, sometimes I do rear lateral’s right after shoulder presses, frequently I may alternate dumbbell presses or Smith machine presses for barbell presses.

You can choose which exercises you like to use the best and mix them around how you choose, the choice is yours, as long as you hit each head of the shoulders and rest for one minute between each set.

For beginners I would recommend that you do three exercises, one for each head of the shoulders at two sets each. For intermediate trainers (six months of serious training) four exercises at three sets each. For advanced trainers (one year of serious training) four exercises at four sets each.

Conclusion

Now that you have the basics down you should be ready to start hitting the weights in the gym, train hard but train smart, if you’re doing any over head presses you should always have a spotter. Let your muscles do the work, not your lower back, always perform each exercise with complete control never let the weights control you.

Give your shoulders 72 hours of rest before you work them again. Keep your diet high in protein and carbs for a solid muscle building foundation and make sure you get plenty of sleep every night, it’s when your muscles are at rest is when they do their growing. I hope that this information I have laid out for you can get you off and running. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below.

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Maximize your chest training-better muscle stimulation

Have you ever felt like your not getting the most out of your chest training workout, you do more sets, push more weight or maybe workout longer but don’t feel like your getting the muscle stimulation your looking for, then today’s topic is going to be just what your looking for.

Many people have issues of not seeing the results their looking for, it results in discouragement and falling away from pursuing their dreams of muscular development and a more physically fit body, or maybe they push to the point of over training and have for sure set themselves up for failure.

In today’s article I’m going to talk about how to put stress on a muscle and push it to the point of failure and you don’t have to use a lot of weight. I’m going to share with you how to maximize your chest training for better muscle stimulation. This principle you can do in your chest training workout but you can try this principle out in any workout, whether it be your arms, legs, back or any body part.

Continues motion

Using the continuous motion principal, your going to want to use a lighter weight. When using this principle, what ever the move, from starting position you lower the weight super slow, no less than 5 seconds, when you reach the bottom position, don’t stop and take stress off the working muscle, don’t bounce the weight and for example in the bench press, don’t rest the weight on your chest.

The idea behind this principle is to keep continuous tension on the working muscle by staying in continuous motion. After lowering the weight to a count of no less than 5 seconds, immediately raise the weight without stopping or bouncing, squeeze the muscle in its upwards momentum for a count of no less than 3 seconds. After you have completed one set of the continuous motion, your muscles should be burning, especially if you’re new to this principle.

The bench press

The bench press is the most basic of all chest training exercises and it’s a must if you plan on adding size to your chest. Someone walks up to you and they say, “hey, you look like you lift weights, so how much can you bench?” Anyone who has ever had any interest in lifting weights and building themselves up, has always been in competition with the next guy as to who can bench the most.

Besides being the most basic muscle building move for chest, it’s also a good exercise to start out your training program with, simply because it’s a combination move, meaning the bench press not only works the overall chest but it also works the frontal deltoid, the triceps and the lateral muscles to a degree.

You will want to put emphasis on a combination move like the bench press first when you have more energy, because by the time your done doing approximately 4 sets of the bench press in continuous motion, your only going to have enough energy left to play around with some dumbbells for the rest of your workout.

Inclined presses

The next move in this arsenal of chest training I’ll throw at you will be the inclined dumbbell presses. This is a good move for developing the upper chest and using dumbbells will help with developing the stabilizer muscles and also when using dumbbells you have a rotation when raising an lowering the weights so that will stress your muscles in a different way than with a barbell.

When doing the inclined dumbbell presses, follow the continuous motion principal as you did in the bench press. Start out with the weights at arms length directly above shoulders, lower in a continuous motion, count to at least 5 seconds when lowering, when you reach the bottom position, don’t rest your arms which will take tension of your chest muscles and don’t bounce the weight, follow through from lowering to raising the weight in one continuous motion.

When raising the weights, count to no less than 3 seconds, from the bottom position of the move to the top when the dumbbells are directly above your shoulders should take you no less than 3 seconds, then when you reach the top, don’t stop, continue the move in its downward decent in one continuous motion.

Incorporating a third move

We have covered the bench press for overall chest and inclined presses stressing the upper chest, the third move I’m going to include in this chest training arsenal will be the dumbbell flys, you can feel free to change this to any move you like. Not everyone feels comfortable with doing the dumbbell flys, this is an exercise I have been doing since I started training so I feel pretty comfortable doing these.

Dumbbell flys are an exercise you should be careful about doing, you don’t want to stretch back to far when lowering the weights, you will want to keep your elbows bent to a degree and you definitely don’t want to bounce the weights at the bottom of the stretch, dumbbell flys need to be followed in a slow continuous motion so you definitely don’t want to be using much weight in this exercise.

Free weights vs machines  

I have always used free weights as the mainstay for my training but I incorporate machines into my training on a regular basis as well, it’s good to have a variety in your training to reach as many angles as possible on any given muscle group and I have always believed that variety is the spice of life, lol.

This chest training program that I’m laying out for you is designed around free weights but there is nothing set in stone saying that you have to follow by it exercise for exercise, you can do your entire workout using weight machines, it’s entirely up to you and what your goals are, some people don’t like using free weights and have no inclination to use them but are excited about training on machines. The emphasis of this training article is designed with the idea in mind of continuous motion training and the importance of keeping tension on your muscles for optimal gains.

Some good weight machine exercises that you can do in place of free weights are the chest press machine, peck decks, machine pull overs and cable crossovers. Any other exercises that you can do, feel free to add them into your training program. Your training program should be designed around you and your goals, what inspires you and keeps you motivated.

Conclusion  

With that in mind, you should be ready to give your chest a training like it’s never been put through before and remember, use the continuous motion principal in all of your workouts. There is no need to be over loading the barbell and putting yourself in danger of injury from lifting to much weight, it shouldn’t be a powerlifting match trying to impress onlookers in the gym, it’s about keeping your muscles under continuous tension.

You don’t want to use a weight that is to light, for optimal muscle growth you should follow a repetition scheme of 8-12 and you don’t want to use a weight that is so heavy that you can’t get at least 8 repetitions and you lose proper form. Use all free weights or use all machines or mix it up with a combination of free weights and machines, whatever it takes to achieve your goals and keep you motivated.

For the best performance in your training, always remember to keep a good fuel driven diet that will power you through any serious workout you throw at yourself and keep a good supplementation program in your corner to back you up for optimal performance and muscle recovery. If you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment below.

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Alpha Recovery Plus and Pre-workout review

Alpha Recovery Plus

The most complete recovery product available

*reduces exercise induced inflammation

*reduces lactic acid

*restores electrolytes

*promotes muscle and joint health

20 servings $34.99

Ingredients: amino acids

Form: powder

Amino acid type: BCAA glutamine

Feature: low carb

Sugar content: sugar free

It’s all about recovery  

As hard as you workout, you want to see results, who doesn’t ? You go to the gym, pound out the reps, you pound out the sets, stretch the tape measure one more time to check your arm measurement, either no new muscle gains or very minimal, or maybe you jump on the scales and it’s telling you the same weight you have been weighing in at for as long as you can remember. Today our focus is going to be on getting the most out of your workouts and allowing enough recovery for your muscles to grow.

It’s important to get enough recovery in for the muscle tissue to mend in between workouts, with the Alpha Recovery Plus, this product is designed to help you recover faster. From the innovators of con-cret® innovation of recovery, Alpha Recovery Plus is a dramatic advancement in sports supplementation that promotes the reduction of exercise-induced inflammation(EII) and lactic acid as it enhances recovery, hydration and performance.

The pros 

Alpha Recovery Plus definitely lives up to its claim for the recovery of muscle tissue. After using Alpha Recovery Plus there is definitely a difference in the recovery time as compared to the time it took for the muscles tissues to mend and repair after a long grueling workout before use. Before using Alpha Recovery Plus, there was still muscle stiffness to the touch as long as two days after a training session, but after using Alpha Recovery Plus, there was no muscle soreness apparent.

When it comes to the claim by Alpha Recovery Plus for recovery time, I will give it a thumbs up.

The cons  

None.

Pre-workout

Powerful pre-workout energy booster

Reinforced with con-cret®

*Increases alertness, focus and motivation

*made with purenergy TM ^*

*combines functional and stimulant energy

*enhances strength, endurance and recovery

*no jitters or crash

^purenergy is a unique form of caffeine with no jitters or post-workout crash.

30 servings $29.99

Flavors, blueraspberry or lemon lime

Getting the most out of your workout  

Getting primed and ready for your workout is always an important process. Getting the most from your workout requires more than just physical exertion, it takes determination and focus.

Pre gives you the boost you need to get you through any workout you throw at yourself. Physically and mentally, Pre will keep you going longer and stronger. It’s a great creatine that gives you the strength to power through and sets you up for the rest of the day to power through. Pre also doesn’t cause you to hold water like many other creatines. Pre will surely help you take your gains to another level.

The pros  

Pre is a great advanced pre-workout formula for athletes of any level who are interested in taking their workout performance up a level. It does a good job at providing cellular energy and increased mental focus. I haven’t found any side effects. Pre leaves my workout ending as strong as it begins.

The cons

The claim by Alpha Recovery Plus that you would feel more energy during and after your workouts left me feeling pretty positive about it. The training sessions went a little longer, maybe with the anticipation that Alpha Recovery Plus would act as a safety net and keep my energy levels from getting to low, that claim held its promise with me as well.

For the benefit of mental focus, I would recommend this product. Focus is a very important role in weight training, so I can see myself using this product for some time to come.

Conclusion  

I have been at weight training for quite awhile and have seen a lot of products come and go, no one wants to waste their time on some overly hyped up product that wastes their money and then to see no results, while this product works good for me and I would recommend this for an athlete of any level, that isn’t to say the response would be the same for everyone. With the great advances science has made, Alpha Recovery Plus and Pre-workout are definitely one of the better performers on the market.

Keep with your goals, keep training hard and focus on where you want to be a month from now, a year from now, follow your dreams and don’t let anything sidetrack you. Keep a clean diet and make sure you get plenty of sleep every night, after all, it’s during rest is when the muscles grow. Supplement your diet with Alpha Recovery Plus and Pre workout and that will aid in recovery time between training sessions and focus which is an important role player in any aspect of life. If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below.

Till next time, keep training like a superhero.

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Macro vs Micro nutrients

Eating healthy isn’t always a popular choice, but with proper nutrition, there is always plenty of room for it after we feel the difference from reaping the benefits of eating healthy. In today’s subject we will be covering the importance of macronutrients and the role they play in our everyday lives and micronutrients and the essential role they play in our health and wellness.

Macro vs micro nutrients covers two types of nutrients that our bodies need for different reasons. Macronutrients we need to create energy to fuel us through our day, micronutrients aid in the production of our enzymes, hormones and proteins that are important for our body and brain functions and help with regulating our metabolism, heart beat and bone density.

Macronutrients   

Macronutrients are the general form of nutrient in nutrition that a person takes in to activate the psychological system from proteins, carbohydrates and fats. This is the type of nutrient that gym enthusiasts and bodybuilders load up on to activate energy from plenty of carbohydrates such as rice, potatoes, vegies, fruit and proteins such as chicken, fish, beef, eggs, dairy and nuts.

Loading up on macronutrients will provide energy to your body. Even though things like pastry can fall into the category of macronutrients because they’re loaded with carbs and fat, but they don’t hold the quality of nutrition that a person should be seeking for optimal health and performance, they are void of such nutritional value.

Quality macros   

Processed meats have protein and fat in them, but they are loaded with saturated fat and sodium. You should follow a healthy diet of lean, unprocessed meats like poultry and seafood, eggs and nuts are an optimal form of protein also, and a good source of carbohydrates that will help your body to store a plentiful flow of energy would be rice, whole wheat products, fruit and vegetables.

That’s not to say you should completely cut out all processed foods, but I have always found as with anything, moderation is key.

Tracking macros  

Tracking macros helps a person to gauge the level of carbohydrates, protein and fat that they are taking into their system. The level of carbohydrates, protein and fat a person takes in is all dependent on what a person’s fitness goals are. If someone has a goal to lose weight, they’re carbohydrates will have to be on the lower end with more of a protein intake and lower on the fat. If someone has a goal to put on weight and build muscle, they would need to go on the higher end of carbohydrates and take in a higher level of protein.

If a person was to follow a macronutrient ratio with the idea of losing fat and building muscle at the same time, it can be done, but the results either way would be minimal, it’s best to stick with losing weight or gaining muscle, not both, it depends on which is more important to you, if you follow with losing weight and stick with a diet plan with that purpose in mind, your results will be that much better.

Many people with the objective of building muscle follow a diet regimen with that purpose in mind for example nine months and then switch to a lower carbohydrate diet for fat loss for the next three months.

Macros for different body types  

(Ectomorph) body type has more of a slender build and narrow in the shoulders. They have a harder time putting on muscle, but it’s easier for them to get lean. Ectomorphs should stick with more of the higher end range of carbs, between 40-60% of total calories, for protein about 25% of total calories.

(Mesomorph) body type are naturally strong, muscular and athletic, broad in the shoulders and more of a dense bone structure, they have little trouble gaining muscle and losing fat. I would suggest 30-50% of total calories.

(Endomorph) body type has more of a stocky build and a slower metabolism, it’s easy for them to build muscle, but they have more of a tendency to store fat easily. Carbs should be at the lower end, I would suggest 20-40% of total calorie intake.

Gender also has a play in macro ratios. Women are more efficient at burning fat and less efficient at burning the glycogen stored in muscles. Women should take in a lower carb intake than men.

Women have a much greater reliance on fats for fuel during exercise. This could have something to do with estrogen levels, estrogen promotes HGH. Women also have higher levels of intramuscular triglycerides (IMTG).

Micronutrients  

Micronutrients don’t have the importance in large amounts like macros do, micronutrients are measured by trace amounts but they are not less important than macros by any means, micros are essential to overall health, they aid in the production of enzymes, hormones and proteins and they are critical for body and brain functions, micronutrients aid in the regulation of the metabolism, heart beat and bone density.

Micronutrient deficiencies can cause lasting health problems, physically and cognitively.

Quality micros   

Micronutrients include vitamins and minerals, trace elements, phytochemical and antioxidants that are found in natural food sources like fruits and vegetables, dairy, nuts, poultry and lean meats.

Supplementing your diet  

Many people use supplements as a regular dietary aid along with their meals. Some people have problems with gluten intolerance, there bodies can’t absorb all the nutrients from natural food sources. Gluten intolerant people need to watch the quality of supplement intake so that micros are optimally absorbed.

Some vitamins absorb better when paired with other supplements, calcium and magnesium are often taken together. But you need to use caution when taking supplements, too much of some vitamins can cause health issues.

One word of advice is you should never use supplements as a substitute for a healthy diet, the purpose of supplements are to enhance a healthy diet plan and help people with absorption issues. If you are struggling with absorption issues, your physician can perform a blood test to determine which micros your already getting and they can identify any deficiencies you may have.

Some common nutrients that are ideal for supplementing your diet plan with and help you with achieving your health goals are calcium, magnesium, iron, iodine, phosphorus, potassium, folate, vitamin A and vitamin D.

Conclusion   

Macros and micros don’t pair of In battle as to determine which is better or more important, they are both essential elements to good health, they each play a role in keeping our bodies functioning at their best.

I hope that the information I have shared has given some insight on setting up a healthy diet plan that’s right for you and can help you with achieving your goals to living a healthier lifestyle. If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below.

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What is the right balance for nutrition and exercise

Nutrition and exercise are both important if you want to achieve the success your looking for in a better body and better health, but even though exercise is important for achieving the muscle tone and strength that many people are going for, first you need to have the right kind of nutrients feeding your muscles. The subject of today’s content is going to cover, what is the right balance for nutrition and exercise?

A common misconception that many people have is that to look good they need to lose weight by starving themselves, a healthy diet doesn’t mean you should deprive yourself. Dieting is about a healthy way of life, cutting the excess fats and taking in the proper nutrients, first you need to find out what your calorie intake should be for your current bodyweight and subtract 500 calories from that to come up with what your calorie intake should be to lose weight.

Determining your caloric intake

Just hearing those words, determining your caloric intake, is enough to make a lot of people run, that sounds like a lot of work measuring food portions out, who has time for that? to determine the amount of calories you need to maintain your weight and to lose weight, I have a link provided to get you on your way to figuring out exactly how much to consume every day to start shedding those unwanted pounds. Daily caloric needs.

The first thing you will need to do is create a program to follow by, a step by step guide planned out for each meal with a set amount of calories for each meal totaling the overall amount of calories you would need per day to lose weight. You will need to spend a little time to draw up your plan, but once you have it down, it should be pretty easy to get in the swing of things.

Example meals

Breakfast///

1 vanilla berry oatmeal parfait:

*1/2 cup dry oats, cooked with water according to package directions—cal 150

*1/2 cup blueberries or 3/4 cup sliced strawberries—cal 41

*5oz. Fat-free, vanilla Greek yogurt—cal 80

*1 TBSP crushed almonds or crushed pecans—cal 45

*5 oz. light vanilla soy milk or skim milk—cal 88

*layer yogurt, berries and nuts over the cooked oatmeal. Splash with milk until the desired consistency is achieved.

Morning snack///

*1/2, 3-inch diameter grapefruit—cal 65

*1/2 TBSP honey—cal 32

*1-oz. mozzarella cheese stick—cal 80

Lunch///

*6 whole wheat crackers—cal 120

Lemon fresh tuna salad:

*4oz, chunk light tuna, drained—cal 100

*2 cups shredded romaine lettuce—cal 16

*6 black olives, sliced—cal 40

*1 Roma tomato, diced—cal 16

*2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil—cal 80

*1 TBSP lemon juice—cal 4

*dash of garlic salt—cal 0

*black pepper to taste—cal 0

*toss all ingredients together.

Afternoon snack///

*15 almonds—cal 104

Dinner///

1, 4-oz. serving seared pork tenderloin with maple-mustard glaze—cal 230

*2/3 cup brown rice—cal 144

*1 cup chopped, steamed broccoli—cal 55

total calories for the day—1490

Concentrate on portion control  

Drink a glass of water thirty minutes before eating, you will likely eat more due to dehydration, drinking water will not only hydrate you but will help you from over doing it on portion sizes. Fill your plate mostly with fresh vegetables, if you’re going to overeat anything, it would be best to fill up on fresh vegetables.

Put aside half of your meal. It may be a little difficult to stop halfway through, but after you finish eating half the portion size that you dished up, wait about twenty minutes and any hunger you may have had will have vanished. Measure out the correct portion of carbs and protein. A few examples of correct portions would be, 1 slice of bread, 1/2 cup of your choice of fresh vegetables, 100 grams of fish, two eggs, 170 grams of tofu and 30 grams of nuts or seeds.

Eat slowly, if you have a tendency of eating too fast you will likely eat too much, then you will not only feel uncomfortable but probably feel guilty for going over your recommended allowance. Be sure to include healthy fats such as avocado, nuts, seeds and olive oil because the fat helps you to stay more satisfied. Lean cuts of chicken, fish and beef are excellent choices of protein that will help with keeping you satisfied.

Coming clean on your dietary weaknesses

 

To overcome any dietary weaknesses it would be a good idea to make a list of the eating and exercise habits you would like to change and select one to work on. Don’t worry about trying to overcome more than one at a time, it could become overwhelming and less likely that you will be able to make any changes at all, a list of habits is easier to overcome than a resolution. Resolutions can seem overwhelming, especially if you’re not ready to make the changes, they can seem insurmountable just a few weeks out.

Muscle to burn fat

When you exercise you are using muscle, so when you build muscle, muscle tissue burns calories even when you are resting. 10 pounds of muscle will burn an extra 50 calories in one day at rest, or 1 pound of muscle would be equivalent to 5-6 pounds of fat in one day at rest. It’s not a significant amount of fat loss to depend on your metabolism to help you achieve your goals. Weight training does help to speed up your metabolism, but you should rely on having the right diet plan to get you moving at a more steady progress in achieving your goals.

Instead of getting fixated on the idea of resistance training with your diet and cardio for the purpose of speeding up your metabolism, resistance training is meant to maintain muscle as much as possible while following a diet and cardio. It’s critical to get a good combination of resistance training and cardio, a good plan to follow would be a 50/50 ratio, 30 minutes of resistance training and 30 minutes of cardio. Once you have worked your way up, shoot for 60 minutes of resistance training and 60 minutes of cardio.

Use higher reps for resistance training

 

When including resistance training with your weight loss program, you should follow a routine of lower weight and higher reps. A good rep range to follow to encourage a higher heart rate would be 12-20 repetitions. You don’t want to use a weight that’s so heavy that you can’t complete 12-20  repetitions with good form and if you are using a weight that’s too light that you exceed the 20 repetitions, then it’s time to increase the weight.

When following a cardio program you should follow a fast enough tempo that it gets your heart rate going and follow that up with a high intensity resistance training routine following 12-20 repetitions with short rest periods between set’s.

Conclusion

 

Don’t be afraid to work hard to achieve your goal, after all, this is a goal you have set for yourself, anything worth having is worth working hard for. Your resistance training, cardio and diet plan is your pass to a healthier lifestyle and you get out of it what you put into it.

Keep you’re vegetables as the mainstay of your diet and take in lean protein for muscle and this will also help to keep your hunger at bay. Follow a rigorous resistance training and cardio program and always remember, if you slip up on your training or diet plan, it’s not the end of the world, just keep progressing forward and you can achieve anything you set your mind to.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Best all one home gym-xm 7626 home trainer review

X Mark Functional Trainer cable machine xm 7626

Color- grey

Manufacturer- Fitness Solutions Group

Product dimensions- 35.5 by 71 by 84 inches

Item weight- 247 pounds

Shipping weight- 827 pounds

 

This product review is an endorsement for Amazon, if you click on the affiliate link and purchase a product, I will receive a small commission, but at no additional cost.

 

I have talked about benefits a person can have from training at home and at the gym, it’s all in a person’s preference, there are advantages and disadvantages either way. Some people don’t have the room to set up equipment in their home, but those that do have a little extra room and hate going to the gym just might be interested in some options that could make their fitness goals a little easier.

Then there is the issue of spending loads of money on a bunch of weight training equipment, but what if you could get a hold of one weight training home gym that could do it all, to have one piece of universal equipment instead of having multiple pieces of equipment would surely make it a lot easier on space.

The Advantages  

Working out on your own home gym can be a big convenience. You don’t have to wait in line for a piece of training equipment, especially if you have a program designed where you move from one exercise to the next with very little rest.

Working out on your own home gym can make for better motivation. Without all the distractions of other people talking and clanging weights, you can dial in to your own choice of music, set your own pace and keep the proper rest periods between set’s.

Hygiene isn’t the greatest at a gym, infectious germs can be easily spread from weight machine to weight machine and these infectious germs can live up to a month getting spread from person to person to you and not everyone who gets sick stays home from the gym.

Cost for a gym membership can really add up to a lot of money, granted home equipment isn’t exactly cheap either but home training equipment is a one time investment.

Last but not least is the money you can save on gas. For many, getting to the gym can be a good distance and with the price of gas, that can really add up to a lot of money over a period of time and you don’t have to fight traffic.

XM 7626 Versatility  

This XM-7626 is the most versatile piece of equipment for your families home gym, now instead of just keeping up with your own personal weight training or fitness goals, you can also inspire those training habits on your family as well if there not already working on training goals of their own, keeping a training program is also a great way for the family to spend quality time together, motivating each other on their journey to reaching goals as a family.

The X Mark Functional Trainer Cable Machine XM7626 has a dual 200 pound weight stacks, quick adjust pulleys with 19 settings spaced at 3.5 inches each and easily interchangeable accessories. That can make for quick set up and quick change over and weight adjustments for when your training rapidly and moving from set to set with little rest.

Accessories include a pair of 8″ hand straps, a pair of 17″ long strap handles, a 23″ triceps rope, a short bar, and a 42″ long bar, leg ext, leg curl strap, ankle strap and a workout poster.

The heavy duty 11-gauge 2″ by 3″ steel mainframe construction ensure the XM-7626 is solidly built, while the commercial grade pull up rig and pulley system are extremely smooth.

Exercise capacity

As with other weight training machines out on the market typically have a weight capacity of 150 pounds per weight stack but with the X Mark Functional Trainer has 200 pound dual weight stacks. The X Mark Functional Trainer is designed for many upper body movements, one of the more popular being the cable crossovers, but with the right attachments you can target your lower body like quads and hamstrings, that’s where the low cable setting comes in handy.

Using the ankle attachment provided, you can do a wide range of isolation moves for the quads, hamstrings and glutes. To name a handful of leg training moves would be cable squats, split squats, leg curls, leg raises and lunges.

Pros

When I’m ready to do some serious training, I like to know that I’m going to give it my best on some well constructed equipment, the X Mark Functional Trainer is built with commercial grade construction and I’m comfortable knowing that I’m training with durable metallic cables and the pulleys are crafted for smooth operation. The 200 pound weight stacks create for a more strenuous versatile workout.

The X Mark Functional Trainer comes with 19 adjustment positions for pulleys creating for a broader range of exercises that you can perform for your high intensity workout with over 35 exercises available. There are several attachments included to give your workout more versatility and the X Mark Functional Trainer is designed with quite operation in mind, the X Mark truly makes working out fun.

Cons

I haven’t found any cons with the X Mark Functional Trainer except for the weight stacks are not upgradable.

Conclusion

The X Mark Functional Trainer is a very well constructed weight machine that anyone who enjoys a good workout would be proud to own one for their own home gym. For a weight machine that is over $2000 your definitely getting your money’s worth, when you take into consideration how much you have to pay for a gym membership, you will realize just how much of a savings your making when the X Mark Functional Trainer is a one time investment.

No more running to the gym spending the extra money on gas, no more waiting in line for weight machines and no more wiping sweat of the benches because the last guy who used it neglected to clean it off, and no more worry about getting sick from improper hygiene and the spreading of germs.

All you need now is time and persistence to follow your dreams and with the right focus and the right equipment you can accomplish anything, the X Mark Functional Trainer is an incredible trainer and it’s sure to get the job done for years to come. Pursue your dreams and train like a superhero.

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