Exercise Balls

Exercise balls are one of the most innovative ways
to exercise. These little balls will catch every
one’s fancy due to their shape and very attractive
colors. The real benefit of these balls, which
were introduced by a group of Swiss medical therapists,
is a substitute of support during exercise.

Working out with the exercise balls will strengthen
and tone all of the major muscles of the body. The
soft texture of the balls make it an ideal choice
for Yoga positions, using dumbbells for muscle
toning, or working on heavy duty weight training
equipment.

The advantage of exercise balls is that they are
durable and maintain shape well under pressure. The
documentation with the balls will provide test
load figures for how much weight the exercise balls
will hold. The advantage here is the fact that the
balls provide soft yet firm support that doesn’t
harm your body.

You can find exercise balls in several different
colors and finishes. You can even get a ball that
matches the texture of your room. They are simple
to store and you can even roll them under your bed
or a table if you prefer. When you aren’t using
them, you can let kids play with them. These balls
are very fun for kids, as they are very soft and
won’t cause them any harm.

Medical equipment
Originally developed for use in medical therapy,
the exercise ball is used to support the body
during exercise. These balls will provide support
to the body when you do a specific exercise in a
specific position and still need to maintain the
balance. Most exercise balls are made of burst
proof latex or other material that is very safe to
use.

There are many postures with yoga and muscle toning
exercise that can only be done with the help of
support. For these postures, exercise balls are
quite useful. The exercise balls will introduce an
element of stability to the exercise that you
wouldn’t normally get with the floor exercise.

Your body responds automatically to the instability
to keep balanced on the exercise ball. This will
help in strengthening the muscles that aren’t
actively participating in exercise.

An exercise is also very useful for physiotherapy
treatment. Exercise balls will help to get rid
of backache and spinal disorders. The small
range of movement and adjustment of balance of
the spine that is induced by exercising with the
exercise ball will help reduce back pain.

The Swiss ball exercise is for people with back
pain to provide them with a simple way to restore
movements after an episode of back pain. It also
results in improved muscle strength, greater
flexibility, and a wide range of motion of the
spine during treatment.

Exercise Back Pain Away

According to past research and studies, nearly 80%
of all Americans will experience some type of back
pain in their lives. The American Academy of
Orthopedic Surgeons believes this as well, as they
say 80% of us out there will encounter some type of
problem with our back before we die.

Traditionally, the treatment for lower back pain is
increasing core strength to increase flexibility on
muscles that are tight, which will provide better
stabilization of the spine and exercises to correct
the imbalances of the muscles. The muscles that
surround the spine will provide stability and support
of the spinal column.

Every muscle between the hips and shoulders are
included as well, as these muscles are referred to
as the core muscles. Back pain can be a result of
muscle imbalances caused by any of these core
muscles. If the back of your thighs are weaker than
the front of your thighs, there will be an uneven
pull on the front of your spinal column.

There are some effective ways that you can integrate
core strength training exercises into all of the
exercises you perform, rather than doing just the
traditional crunches and sit-ups. One such way
is by breathing effectively. Deep breathing will
utilize your diaphragm muscles which will help
support the spinal column and lengthen the spine,
which is great for your lower back and supporting
you when you walk or run.

The tummy tuck and bridge lift can also help you
to reduce back pain and strengthen the core
muscles as well. The tummy tuck exercise is a
simple pelvic tilt that draws the abdominal muscles
away from the floor. Do perform a tummy tuck,
simply lie face down on the floor and squeeze
your glutes to strengthen your spine.

Instead of pressing into your thighs, you should
instead reach your tailbone down towards your
heels. Perform 15 reps of each exercise and
alternate them until you have completed a couple
of sets.

For the bridge, place your feet on a bench or
on the floor and scoop your pelvis upward, as your
rib cage should stay low to reduce any irritation
to your spinal muscles. The bridge will help to
relieve stress on your back and focus the muscle
contractions into the glutes and the hamstrings.

Other exercises for lower back pain are the lumbar
side stretch, hip flexor stretch, and calf
stretches, as all three can help to alleviate
pull on your spinal column.

Hip flexor stretch
When doing a hip flexor stretch, bring one foot
forward in a bent knee, 90 degree angle, while your
other leg is on the floor behind you with your
foot pointed upwards toward the ceiling. The
hip flexor stretch will help to open up the
muscles of your back on the side of the spine near
your hips. You can also squeeze your glutes as
well to deepen the stretch with each breath you
exhale. You should begin to feel a stretch in your
back leg, in the thigh front and the hamstrings
on your front leg.

Lumbar side stretch
This stretch will bring your legs wide with your
knees bent while you sit or stand. Simply bring
one hand down towards your foot on the inside of
the thighs and your other hand behind your head.

The last stretch will open up your Achilles tendon,
which is the most distant pull on the spine. For
this, place an object under your foot and lean the
weight of your body forwards. Maintain a fluid
breath while you hold stretches for 30 seconds or
so. After a while, you should begin to feel a
stretch behind your knee and shin.

Exercise At Home Or Gym

Making the decision of where you will go to exercise
is a very important step in reaching your goals of
fitness. A lot of factors will go into this
decision, and each one should be evaluated well
before you start exercising. Once you have made
a decision on where you will go to exercise, you
can move on to deciding how you plan to work out.

As you probably know, exercising at home has many
advantages. The finance department is one of the
best advantages. With the gas prices being what
they are today, it is quite obvious that you’ll
save money on fuel as well as wear and tear on
your vehicle by choosing to exercise at home.

Memberships to a gym can often be quite expensive
and may include other things that you don’t need
such as child care or swimming pools. You also
won’t need to be concerned about the latest
trends of exercise gear as you most likely will
be exercising by yourself at home.

Keep in mind that working out at home does
require a bit of financial obligation. Even
though you may plan to run, it is very important
that you have high quality running shoes. This
statment applies to any type of equipment that
you may purchase to use at home. If you go
out and buy cheap equipment, you’ll probably
end up getting hurt or getting frustrated because
you aren’t making any progress.

Along with the financial gains, exercising at
home may also help those who don’t like to work
out in public. If you are worried about how you
look in gym clothes, it is very comforting to
know that the only person who has to be with you
when you exercise at home is you. Also, when
you exercise at home, you don’t need to worry
about time at all.

Those of you who are motivated by being with
people you know or come to know while working
out away from home, a gym may be a better idea
than working out at home. At the gym, you’ll
also more of a selection of equipment as well,
far more than you’ll have at home.

If you need other services than just weights and
equipment, the gym may have just what you need.
If you plan to swim a triathlon, you’ll find the
swimming pool at the gym to be just what you need
to prepare yourself. Swimming is also a great
exercise for your body and cardio, as it will work
muscles in your body that you probably didn’t
even know you had.

Gyms will also offer you classes that you may find
very motivating. If you attend class on a regular
basis, you may be motivated enough to continue
so you don’t have to defend yourself when asked
where you’ve been or what you have been doing.
You can also meet new people in class, or just
help others along if you choose.

All in all, making the choice of exercising at
home or at the gym is a choice you should make
based on your goals and personal preference. The
most important decision you’ll need to make is
to determine what type of environment you want
to be in and how you want to accomplish the
fitness goals in your life.

Once you have given it some thought and weighed
out the pros and cons, you’ll have no problem
making the choice. Always keep in mind that
once you’ve made your choice, you can always switch
if you aren’t happy with the choice you made.

Exercise As Power Source

This day and age it can be very difficult indeed to
go to the gym. Life is very hectic and busy, which
will create a serious challenge for remaining
consistent with exercise each day. Exercise is
however, just what we all need to reduce stress,
and give the body the extra energy it needs to carry
out normal living.

The best results of exercise are achieved through
the use of refined techniques, functional exercises,
cardio, the right nutrition, variety, awareness,
consistency, and motivation over a period of time.

The refined techniques mean correct form to isolate
muscles or to target areas of the body. Efficiency
is need to ensure stimulation of the muscles. With
weight lift training, which is also known as
resistance training, you’ll need to eliminate any
type of momentum.

It is also important to move the weight about using
a full range of motion. Full range of motion causes
the muscle to contract for the right amount of time
and help to ensure the right length of the tendons.
The goal here is to strengthen the joints of your
body by stimulating the muscles.

Cadence is also helpful, as it is a term that refers
to the rate in which the resistance or the weight
moves. The best results with cadence are gained
by slow movements which will cause the muscle
to contract for a longer period of time. You
can mix in a series of fast and slow cadence,
which is very beneficial with sports type
training.

Using the correct angles will achieve muscle
isolation in target areas and help to decrease
the risk of injuries, which is great for those
using heavy weights.

Functional type exercise is a popular technique
that will stimulate the core and torso of your
body while you work on another muscle group at
the same time. As an example, when you perform
a dumbell press while lying on an exercise ball.

Your abdominal muscles and the core muscles will
contract to hold your body into this position,
while your chest and tricep muscles will push the
dumbells up. This type of exercise and challenge
will cause maximum stimulation to your body and
keep the workout interesting and refreshing.

Cardio is another exercise that is great for the
heart and lungs. The total number of calories
you burn is very important along with maintaining
the right heart rate. The formula for your
heart rate is 220 minus your age times 60 for
the lower number, then 220 minus you age and
times 80 for the upper number.

This is also known as fat burning zone. Cardio
will also de-toxify the body and help to strengthen
the immune system along with other benefits. The
muscles will contract and pass the lymph along,
which will allow the immune system to clear away
dead cells and bring new ones in.

Anytime you exercise, warming up is very important,
as it will prepare your body for the more
demanding workout of cardio. You should always
allow 15 – 30 minutes prior to weight lifting and
10 – 15 minutes prior to cardio exercises. You
should also stretch as well, as this will help
get the blood flowing through your musles and
get them limber as well.

An ideal schedule for working out is to warm
up then follow with cardio. You can lift weights
on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday then cardio
only on Tuesday and Thursday.

Even though you may think your schedule is simply
too busy to maintain a schedule for working out,
you’ll find that adding exercise will actually add
more time, as you’ll have a lot more energy in
your normal everyday life. You can think of
exercise as the batteries that will help to give
your life power.

Exercise And Your Complexion

As we all know and hear all the time, exercise can
do a body good. It can help you to stay trim, tone
muscles, and help to boost energy as well. What
you probably don’t know, is the fact that exercise
can actually help you achieve the complexion that
you’ve always wanted.

It’s true that regular exercise will nourish the
skin all over the body with fresh blood, oxygen, and
nutrients. As well, the increased blood flow and
circulation that come with working out will help
to draw toxins out of the body and improve the
condition of all your vital organs, including the
epidermis.

A lot of people think that sweat can trigger acne
flare ups. The fact is, sweating is great for any
type of congested skin, as it helps promote the
flushing of impurities from the epidermal layer and
will clean out the pores. As well, vigorous
exercise can actually correct the hormonal imbalances
that can trigger blemishes, therefore reducing the
likelihood of outbreaks.

Any physical routine that you like to do, such as
yoga, running, biking, spinning, pilates, boxing,
and such, will help to lessen the stress that you
encounter on a daily basis and help to prevent
stress related acne.

Keep in mind that exercise may not be a miracle
cure for everything, as you may still experience
breakouts from time to time although your acne
will certainly be less severe and last for a much
shorter time frame.

Exercise is also great for other skin conditions
that may or may not have to do with the presence of
acne. Your skin losing its elasticity or becoming
thin and less resilient is something that we all
encounter. This is a common problem for may of
us as we get older.

As we all get older, we start to lose collagen,
which will make us look tired. As many of us
don’t know, physical activity can actually help to
promote the growth of collagen in your skin cells,
which will plump up your facial skin and make
you look younger and more vibrant.

If you are worried about wrinkles, you should
consider relaxation that comes after you exercise.
This has the effect of making your muscles, facial
muscles included, soften up. What this means,
is that your lines will appear less pronounced,
helping to contribute to the youthful look that
you are trying to achieve.

With exercise you can achieve a smaller waist,
better muscle tone, softer skin, fewer blemishes,
and an overall younger, more fresher look. If
you’ve wanted to add or change to your complexion,
you shouldn’t hesitate to exercise. Exercise
will help you feel more alive as well as improve
your body. All you need to do is take a little
bit of time out of your schedule to exercise –
its as simple as that.

Exercise And Stress

Even though exercise may not be the most exciting
word in your vocabulary, it sure is a word with a
lot of benefits. Participating in daily exercise
will not only make you healthier in general, but
it can also diminish the effects of stress on your
body as well.

Think about all the times you have heard someone
say „the doctor says it’s stress related“. Normally
people will laugh it off, concluding that doctors
say that when they don’t know the real answers or
diagnosis. The truth of the matter is that too
much stress will play a role in many diseases.

To help increase your immune system and decrease
your stress level as well, try exercise, as movement
is the key word here. Bending, stretching, reaching
and walking. There’s really no need to buy any
expensive equipment either, as you can implement
more movement into your daily routine and reap
the benefits.

If you like aerobic exercise, you should grab a
partner and have a blast with one of the basic
aerobic videos. Or, you can simply go out for a
walk and enjoy spending time together. As you
may have heard, walking really is the best overall
exercise you can do for your health. As long as
you have a pair of walking shoes, you’ll be
fine.

As you go through your daily activities, make it
a point to walk a little farther, bend down and
pick something up without using a pick up stick
or moving the item towards you with your foot.
While you are sitting, you should also do some
simple and quick stretches for your neck and
shoulders.

If you enjoy sitting around watching television,
you should consider buying a jogging board.
These padded boards will make running, jumping,
or walking in place less stressful on your knees
and joints. They are easy to store as well and
also very portable.

In many people’s opinions, jogging boards are
the best pieces of equipment you can buy. They
are also far cheaper than bulky treadmills and
stationary bikes.

There are several different exercises that you
can do to help you eliminate the stress in
your life. Walking is by far the best, as you
can easily lose yourself and your troubles by
walking. Even if it is just around the block,
walking can do wonders for your health as well
as stress.

If you have a lot of stress in your life, you
may want to consider a gym. Working out then
sitting in the sauna is also a good way to
relieve tension. If your gym has a pool, you
may find swimming to be very beneficial as well,
as it helps you to relax.

Exercise And Sleeping Better

The amount of physical exercise that you exert during
the day is one of the key ingredients to helping you
get a good sleep at night. The more active your
body is during the day, the more likely you are to
relax at night and fall asleep faster.

With regular exercise you’ll notice that your quality
of sleep is improved and the transition between the
cycles and phases of sleep will become smoother and
more regular. By keeping up your physical activity
during the day, you may find it easier to deal with
the stress and worries of your life.

Research and studies indicate that there is a direct
correlation between how much we exercise and how
we feel afterwards.

You should try and increase your physical activity
during the day. The goal here is to give your body
enough stimulation during the day so that you aren’t
full of energy at night.

Your body requires a certain amount of physical
activity in order to keep functioning in a healthy
manner. It is also important to note that you should
not be exercising three or four hours before you go
to bed.

The ideal exercise time is in the late afternoon or
early evening. You want to make sure you expend
your physical energy long before it is time for
your body to rest and ready itself for sleep.

You should attempt to exercise at least three or
four times a week for a period of 30 minutes or so.
You can include walking or something simple. If
you prefer, you can include strenuous activities
such as running as well.

The goal here is to increase your heart rate and
strengthen the capacity of your lungs. By adding
a regular exercise activity to your daily schedule
will help you to improve your overall health and
help you emotionally as well.

Along with running and walking there are several
other physical activities that you can add to your
daily life to increase your level of physical
activity. If you are battling not sleeping, you’ll
find aerobic exercise to be the best.

Your goal with exercise is to increase the amount
of oxygen that reaches your blood stream. Overall,
there are many types of aerobic exercise for you
to choose from. The activities include running,
biking, using a treadmill, dancing, and jumping
rope.

There are some non aerobic exercises that you may
find beneficial to help you solve your amnesia
problem.

Yoga
Yoga is an exercise that has a stimulatory effect
on your nervous system, especially the brain. Yoga
utilizes breathing techniques and yoga postures to
increase the blood circulation to the brain, promoting
regular and restful sleeping patterns. The regular
practice of yoga will help you to relax as well
as relieve tension and stress.

Tai Chi
Tai Chi is an ancient art of breathing and movement
that was developed by the Chinese monks. The
movements involved are slow and precise, which is
ideal if you have joint pains or you are unable
to participate in high aerobic exercises. Research
has shown that Tai Chi can help with insomnia by
promoting relaxation.

If you discover that you don’t have any time to
exercise on a regular basis, you should try to
sneak moments of activity into your schedule.
Whenever possible, you should take the stairs instead
of the elevator, as little things like that will
do wonders for your body.

You should also park your car around the corner and
walk that extra block or two to get to your
destination. As you may know, there are many small
things you can add to increase the activity in
your life. Your overall goal here is to have a
healthy and well balanced life – with plenty of
sleep.

Exercise And Play

Often times, when children return from playing, they
look quite exhausted and ready for a nap. This is
the most accurate description, and also quite the
truth, as playing is hard work. It’s exhausting to
the mind and body of the child, and it plays an
important role in helping them to become productive
and healthy.

The role of play and exercise in the life of a young
child will provide them with several benefits.
Exercise of the body is a very important part of
keeping the young body fit as it grows into an adult
body. Once we reach adulthood, if we’ve had the
benefit of exercise and play, we all tend to
continue that habit well into our adult years.

Play is also good in the form of participating in
organized sports, coordinated play times, and being
a member of a large group during all of these types
of activities. Playing on this level will teach
us how to interact with peers and perform as a
team with our fellow players. In today’s business
world, these skills are essential.

What we learn in body language, coping skills, and
the interaction of the mind and body during our
interaction with others is invaluable. When we
learn this skills to the fullest, not only will
we learn how to get along with others, but we will
also learn how to interact better with ourselves.

Although interacting with ourselves seems like
a rather pointless exercise, it is actually an
important part of maintaining the best sense of
health and wellness. There will always be times
when our bodies are trying to tell us things
about our physical or mental condition, which we
will simply refuse to listen to.

Through exercise and play, we will also learn
what our limitations are – both physical and
mental. At times of play, you’ll see children
and young adults push themselves to their limit
and beyond. As children, we are all more able
to distinguish between a real limit versus what
society itself calls our limits.

For children and young adults, the pressures of
the world don’t affect them near as much as it
does adults. Children have a much better state of
mind and peace, unlike adults that have let the
outside influence the body and mind, which will
do little more than becoming a dominant factor of
time.

As you can tell, the benefits that are gained from
exercise and play time as children, will benefit
us for the rest of our lives. As adults, we all
too often forget how important both exercise and
play are.

Normally, we want to rush children into their
daily responsibilities, forgetting that at their
age they need play and interaction for their young
minds.

Exercise And Harm

Anytime you exercise, your brain releases chemicals
known as endorphins that produce a feeling of euphoria,
which is known as „runners high“, which is also very
easy to become chemically addicted to.

Without this rush, you’ll feel irritable and out of
it until you exercise again. Therefore, you’ll go
on exercising and not listen to what your body is
actually telling you – which is to stop.

The main reason addicts will continue to push themselves
lies in what will happen when they don’t work out.
Normally when they are unable to exercise, they will
display signs of depression, anxiety, confusion,
and be less happy with themselves.

Aches and pains
Over exercising doesn’t only affect the mind, but the
body as well. Exercise will initially do what it
is intended to do, give you a fit body but once you
cross the line however, it can drastic. Muscle
damage, osteoarthritis, and heart problems will all
be waiting in the wings if you continue to overdo
it. The body has limits and if you push beyond
that limit, you’ll do nothing but harm yourself.

Obsessive exercise tends to happen among those who
are new to exercise. Therefore, if you are keen
to reap the benefits of getting fit, you’ll tend
to overstep the limits.

The initial signs of over exercise are exhaustion,
which can lead to a build up of fatigue. Keep in
mind, it isn’t only the muscles that are at risk,
but the bones as well. Many people who exercise
push themselves to the point of injuries such as
shin splints or even stress fractures, then refuse
to rest, which causes greater and sometimes even
permanent damage.

Even a brisk walk in the morning doesn’t come
without risk, as walking too much can lead to
osteoarthritis. When you walk, you are working
against gravity. Even though you are exercising
your muscles, you are also harming your knee joints
as well.

Many people who walk up to an hour or more everyday
end up with complaints of aches in the knees. The
fact is, jogging also harms the knees, and too
many sit ups can hurt as well. As with any type
of exercise, moderation is the key.

You should always start off gradually, and combine
several different types of workouts, which is one
thing that obsessive exercisers forget to do. One
of the biggest complication factors of people who
get addicted to exercise is that they will tend
to perform the same workout each and every day,
which further increases the risk of permanent damage.

Think right
You should never work out to the point where you
feel completely exhausted once you have finished.
Your limit with exercise should be 45 minutes to an
hour, four or five days a week. When you are
finished, your workout should leave you feeling
fresh and energetic. Every week should make it a
point to take a day’s break – as your body will
need to relax and rejuvenate.

The key to achieving this completely lies in your
attitude, as exercising is the way to a healthy
life. If you do it only to please yourself, you’ll
defeat the entire purpose when you stand there on
the weighing machine.

If you take things one day at a time and don’t
over do it, you’ll be well on your way to a healthy
body. Exercising can be a lot of fun and a way
to relax, if you don’t rush it. Start off slow
and gradually work your way up. Before you know it,
you’ll know how to prevent injuries before they
happen and you’ll know exactly what you need to
do to remain healthy.

Exercise And Asthma

If you suffer from asthma, you probably think that you
can’t exercise properly or safely. Contrary to what
many think of this subject, there are ways that you
can get in shape and exercise, even if you suffer
from asthma.

Asthma is a chronic lung disease that is marked by
characteristics such as coughing, wheezing, shortness
of breath, and chest tightness. Asthma tends to occur
with people who are genetically or environmentally
presdisposed to the condition.

Some of the triggers that may start or make an attack
worse include exposure to allergens, viral respiratory
infections, airway irritants, exercise, and exposure
to things such as dust mites or cockroaches.

You can prevent asthma attacks by doing the following:
1. Bathe your pets weekly.
2. Don’t smoke or permit smoking in your
home.
3. When mold or pollent counts are high,
you should stay inside with air conditioning.
4. Wash your bedding and any stuffed toys
at least once per week in hot water.
5. Wash your hands every chance you get.
6. Get a flu shot.
7. Wear a scarf over your mouth and nose in
the winter months.
8. Be proactive and know your triggers and
how you should avoid them.

Now that you know what you know about asthma, you
may be wondering where exercise fits in. As most
doctors will tell you, you shouldn’t give up on
sports or exercise at all. You just have to be
smart about how you play and take special pre
cautions to avoid attacks.

Almost all doctors agree that the best way to
prevent attacks during exercise is to keep your
inhaler and medication close by. You should never
use the inhaler more than 3 times during a game
or exercise session. If you are up the previous
night with coughing and wheezing, it’s always best
to go light with your exercise the next day.

For something known as IEA (Exercise Induced Asthma),
the symptoms are somewhat different, in the fact
that they appear after 6 – 10 minutes of exercise
and will often be worse in cold or dry air.

If you have IEA, there are several activities that
you can enjoy such as swimming, walking, biking,
downhill skiing, and team based sports. There are
many activities for you to choose from, to ensure
you get the exercise you need as well.

Keep in mind that the condition of asthma isn’t
„all in your head“, it is a real physiological
medical treatment that will require treatment to
prevent and treat. Even though your doctor will
be your best friend in treating asthma, you are
the one who can prevent your symptoms.

Always be smart, take your medication, and be
proactive. Don’t let it put you in a life of
misery – as you can enjoy exercise just like
everyone else.

Eating And Exercise

Anytime you exercise, you do so in order to try and
maintain good health. You also know that you have to
eat as well, so your body will have the energy it
needs to exercise and maintain for the everyday tasks
of life. For making the best of your exercise, what
you eat before and after you workout is very important.

No matter if you are going to be doing a cardio
workout or a resistance workout, you should always
make it a point to eat a balanced mix of protein and
carbohydrates. What makes that determining percentage
of carbs and protein you consume is whether or not
you are doing cardio or resistance exercise and the
intensity level that you plan to work at.

The ideal time for you to eat your pre workout meal
is an hour before you start. If you plan to work
at a low intensity level, you should keep your pre
workout meal down to 200 calories or so. If you
plan to exercise at a high level of intensity, you
will probably need your meal to be between 4,000
and 5,000 calories.

Those of you who are doing a cardio session will
need to consume a mix of 2/3 carbs and 1/3 protein.
Doing so will give you longer sustained energy from
the extra carbs with enough protein to keep your
muscle from breaking down while you exercise.

For resistance exercise, you’ll need to eat a mix
of 1/3 carbs and 2/3 protein, as this will help
you get plenty of energy from the carbs to perform
each set you do and the extra protein will help
keep muscle breakdown to a minimum while you
exercise.

Eating after you exercise is just as important as
your pre workout meal. Anytime you exercise,
whether its cardio or resistance, you deplete energy
in the form of glycogen. The brain and central
nervous system rely on glycogen as their main
source of fuel, so if you don’t replace it after
you exercise, your body will begin to break down
muscle tissue into amino acids, and then convert
them into usable fuel for the brain and the
central nervous system.

Keep in mind that mostly during resistance
exercise, you’ll break down muscle tissue by
creating micro tears. What this means, is that
after a workout, your muscles will instantly go
into repair mode. Protein is the key here for
muscle repair, as you don’t want muscle breaking
down even further to create fuel instead of
lost glycogen.

Once you have finished a cardio session, you’ll
need to consume mainly carbohydrates, preferably
those with high fiber. Rice, oatmeal, whole wheat
pasta, and northern fruits are excellent sources.
Also, try to consume 30 – 50 grams of there
types of carbs after you exercise. After your
cardio workout, it is fine to eat within 5 – 10
minutes.

Once you’ve finished a resistance workout, you
will need to consume a combination of carbs and
protein. Unlike cardio workouts, resistance
workouts will break down muscle tissue by creating
micro tears.

You’ll need protein as this happens to build up
and repair these tears so that the muscle can
increase in size and strength. The carbs will
not only replace the lost muscle glycogen, but
will also help the protein get into muscle cells
so it can synthesize into structural protein, or
the muscle itself.

After your resistance exercise, you should wait
up to 30 minutes before you eat, so that you won’t
take blood away from your muscles too fast. The
blood in your muscles will help the repair process
by removing the metabolic waste products.

Chidren And Exercise

If you have a child of 6 to 8 years old that wants
to start exercising and lifting weights, you may
find yourself wondering what you should do. While
some think it is perfectly fine for children to
exercise, there are others that think differently.

The long and short of it is that yes, it is
beneficial for your child to partake in exercise
or a weight training regimen although there are a
few things that you should keep in mind once this
starts to happen.

No matter how you look at it, children aren’t
minature adults and therefore you can’t use the
same methods with growing children that you can use
with adults, as children are different from adults
emotionally, anatomically, and physiologically.

All children have immature skeletons, as their
bones don’t mature until they get 14 – 22 years of
age. With girls, exercise during childhood can
have very critical effects on bone health that
can last for their entire lives.

Children are often times vulnerable to growth
related overuse injuries such as Osgood schlatter
disease. Children have immature temperature
regulation systems due to their having a large
surface area compared to their muscle mass which
will cause them to be more susceptible to injury
when they aren’t properly warmed up.

Children don’t sweat as much as adults do, so
they will be more susceptible to heat exhaustion
as well as a heat stroke. Due to their low muscle
mass and immature hormone system, it makes it
harder for them to develop strength and speed.
Their breathing and heart response during
exercise are also different from an adults, which
will affect their capacity for exercise.

On the other hand, young boys and girls can
drastically improve their strength with weight
training although opposed to adults, neurological
factors instead of muscle growth factors are mostly
responsible.

When you consider programs for children, first and
foremost you should obtain a medical clearance.
The first approach to designing a program is to
establish a repetition range of 8 – 12 and keep
the work load appropriate for the range.

You should ensure that workouts are spread out
enough to have at least 1 – 2 full days of rest
between workouts. The main focus when working out
should be on the form of every exercise performed,
and not on the amount of weight being lifted.

Before weight training, warm up and stretching
should be done. Start your children off with light
loads and then make adjustments accordingly. No
more than 3 non consecutive exercise sessions
should be done in a week. You should also see to
it that they drink plenty of water before, during,
and after exercise. Getting enough water is very
important with exercise, as it is often times very
easy to get dehydrated – especially with children.

Cardio Exercise

Everyone has wondered at some point in time which
cardio exercise is better. To put it in simple
terms, both low and high intensity exercises will
help you to burn off body fat. The question here
is which is the most effective to burn off more
body fat.

When scientists first discovered that during
intensive exercises, your body burns glycogen, which
is a form of stored carbohydrates that are stored
in your liver and muscles for energy. During low
intensity exercises, your body will burn a lot of
fat.

If your wondering whether or not it works, the
answer is no because there are so many obese people
still around. Even though they are working out
with low intensity routines, it still makes you
wonder how it can be.

The scientists were right when they said the human
body burns more body fat during low intensity
exercises like walking or swimming. During a
high intensity exercise such as running, the body
will burn a lot more calories. Even if some of
the calories burnt are from glycogen, there are
still many fat calories burned as well.

To put the icing on the cake, when your store of
glycogen gets low, the carbohydrates from your
food you eat will later get converted into
glycogen to fill up the store and won’t be
converted to body fat when they are left unused
for energy.

High intensity cardio exercise will juice up your
metabolism even after you have completed your
workout. What this means, is that your body will
continue to burn body fat hours after you have
left the gym. This effect is nearly non existent
in low intensity cardio or aerobic workout.

Accumulatively, your body will burn up more and
more calories during and after you have finished a
high intensity cardio exercise that it will with
low intensity.

You can inject high intensity exercises into your
cardio workout by introducing some interval
training. You can walk for 5 minutes or so, then
break into some jogging for another 5 minutes or
so. Then, walk briskly again until you have
caught your breath and then sprint for a minute
before you walk again. From this point, simply
alternate your running and walking for the
next 15 minutes until you are finished.

One of the best things about cardio is the more
you do it, the more energy you’ll have. Cardio
will help you to burn calories, although its more
useful for keeping your energy levels high.

If you’ve never tried cardio before, you should
give it a shot. If you like to exercise, you’ll
find cardio the best way to boost your energy and
keep in top shape. If you are just starting out,
you’ll want to go slow and keep your cardio
exercise in track – as it is very easy to over
exert yourself.

Buying An All In One System

These days, more and more people are turning away
from memberships to gyms and instead choosing to
invest money in a home gym. You can put a home
gym in a spare corner of your home, or even in the
basement if you wish. Along with helping you save
money by combining several different types of
equipment into one machine, these types of equipment
can easily fit in small spaces and type up a lot
less weight than their individual counterparts.

When you are considering to buy an all in one piece
of exercise equipment, you should first think
about your goals. You should consider what you
hope to achieve from exercising and just how well
this piece of equipment will benefit you.

There are several types of all in one equipment for
exercise on the market and almost all of them are
advertised well on television, in magazines, and
on the internet. The most popular types on the
market are those types that are geared towards
individuals who are interested in lifting weights.

Right now, the two most popular types of all in
one exercise systems are the Bowflex and Total Gym
brands. The Bowflex system uses resistant bows
that bend instead of the traditional weights that
simply lift. Bowflex is designed to fit a wide
variety of budgets and needs, it’s widely
adaptable and extremely popular as well.

To make things even better, you can store the
basic Bowflex system in small and tight places,
even under a bed if you choose. The larger and
more expensive Blowflex system competes with
the types of professional equipment that you can
find in gyms, which allow you a quality workout
on quality equipment.

The Total Gym system is great as well, as it
is advertised by martial arts legend Chuck Norris
and supermodel Christie Brinkley. It is less
expensive than the Bowflex and uses gravity
and resistance instead of traditional weights.
By using this system, you have the ability to
adapt the machine to a wide variety of exercises
that will work many different areas of your body.

When you make that decision about buying an all
in one exercise system, you must also decide
on price, features, brand, and just who will use
the machine. If your family plans to use it as
well, then you’ll need to get a system that
everyone will agree on. You obviously wouldn’t
want a machine that is too complicated for
others in your home.

Even though Bowflex and Total Gym are the 2 most
popular types of all in one equipment, there are
several others out there as will, from brands
such as Weider and many others. Before you
make your choice, you should look at several
to see which one offers you more for your money.

Biking

Biking is a fun sport for people of all ages. It is a great way to incorporate exercise into your life, while having a great time doing it. Family and friends can bike together, at parks, on bike trails, or almost any place that they choose. It is the perfect sport for anyone, no matter if they are 6 or 60. All they have to do is go at their own pace, because any speed is beneficial. As long as it gets the body moving and the blood pumping, it is providing a great health boost.

There is no excuse for someone not to ride a bike. Even if they’ve never learned how to ride a bike with two-wheels, there are adult-size tricycles which don’t require balance to ride. All you do is hop on and start peddling.

Bikes come in all styles, colors and sizes. There are tiny tricycles for toddlers who are just learning what a bike is. Then there are regular two-wheel bikes with training wheels attached, for kids five and up who want to learn to ride. After they ride for a while with the training wheels on, and start to feel comfortable, they can then have an adult remove the training wheels so they can attempt to ride without them. It might possibly be scary for the child at first, and they will probably have a few falls and/or bruises, but they will soon discover that the fun and freedom bike riding was worth the effort.

After an older child has mastered bike riding, there are some other types of bikes that they can be tried out. Motorbikes, including kid-size motorcycles, are popular among youngsters. Some children feel that motorbikes are even more fun than traditional ones, but they’re not getting the aerobic workout that they get from non-motor bikes. This is because there is no need to peddle; the motor does all the work.

Bicycles can also include some handy and convenient gadgets. A favorite among adults and children alike, are baskets. Baskets come in various shapes, colors and sizes, and can be attached on the front of the bike, near the handle bars, or on the back. Some other popular gadgets include: Lights, horns, pedometers and saddles, and many more.

Due to the fact that there are numerous online retailers who sell bikes at great deals, there is no need to leave your home and drive all around town, looking for the best prices. Shop right online, from the convenience of your own home, and have that cool, new bike delivered right to your front door.

So, if you want to receive a great aerobic workout and have fun simultaneously, then try bike riding and you can’t go wrong.

Atkins and Exercise

There is a lot of attention paid in the Atkins diet plan towards food and cooking. It’s true that your food choices on the diet are of utmost importance. But a lot of people make the mistake of ignoring exercise. The newly released Atkins food pyramid shows the importance of exercise. It shows an increase in food options with increased activity. Exercise is important on the Atkins diet, and important for everyone’s overall health.

Exercise is beneficial to body, mind and soul. It has many major benefits, even at limited levels. It not only burns fat but it boosts your metabolism and increases circulation. Daily exercise helps your body eliminate toxins through sweat glands and lymph systems. It is especially important to all low-carb weight loss programs because it regulates blood sugar levels.

Physical exercise is essential for Atkins diet success. Without exercise, your body isn’t configured to process carbohydrates successfully. Research has shown that sedentary individuals have extreme insulin reactions to even moderate amounts of carbohydrates. This means that exercise doesn’t only help you lose weight, it will help you keep it off too. Exercise will teach your body how to process the carbohydrates in your diet. When you exercise regularly, you’ll be able to eat more carbohydrates over time because your body will use them efficiently.

There are two basic types of exercise: aerobic exercise and anaerobic exercise. The best regimen combines these two forms each week.

Aerobic exercise’s primary goal is to increase your heart rate. This causes your body to consume more oxygen and it gives all of your cells a fresh supply of oxygen. If you’ve been without physical activity for a while, many of those cells have been deprived. Aerobic exercise will regenerate them and help you feel better in times when you aren’t exercising.

If you’ve been inactive for a while, it may take some time to get used to your new aerobic workouts. You may want to get some advice from your primary care doctor or a professional aerobics instructor. Make sure to start slowly to give yourself time to adjust to your new movements. It’s essential that you learn how to stretch and warm up correctly in order to avoid muscle strain. Some good beginning aerobic activities include walking, golf, tennis and dancing. These activities won’t cause a lot of strain on your body, but they will get your heart moving. Start slowly and set small goals for yourself. For example, if you are starting a walking program begin by walking four blocks. Then increase your training to five blocks, then six. Your body will respond well to the exercise…after all your body was meant to move!

Anaerobic exercise includes any activity that isn’t technically aerobic. Most of the exercises in this category build muscle mass. Weightlifting and strength training are examples of anaerobic exercises. Working out with weights is an important part of losing weight. As you lose fat, you’ll need to replace it with muscle in order to stay lean. Don’t be afraid of working out with weights. You won’t need to become a bodybuilder. Weight bearing exercises like isometrics and resistance training will help improve your bone density, your posture and your fat burning potential.

If an exercise program is not part of your weight loss efforts, you are setting yourself up for failure. Make a commitment to incorporating exercise into your weight loss efforts and you’ll see the results immediately.

Steps To Wealth

Welcome to this simple, fun and easy exercise to improve your wealth consciousness, focus your mind and get behind yourself so that you can achieve wealth for real, and easily.

The following exercise is just one of 365 different daily “wealth gym” mini-workouts that you can do right there and then, in front of your computer, without even having to get up, and which doesn’t take any more than 60 seconds to complete, from our “60 Second Wealth Creator Series”.

This is a basic visualisation exercise which is very neat to do for real when you come down a flight of steps.

For now, imagine you’re standing at the top of a flight of steps and for each step, we’ll make a wealth affirmation.

10. I am ready for wealth!

Take a deep breath and step down to the next step.

9. Wealth is my birthright.

Take a deep breath and step down to the next step.

8. I achieve wealth easily.

Take a deep breath and step down to the next step.

7. Wealth comes to me readily.

Take a deep breath and step down to the next step.

6. I invite wealth to come into all I do.

Take a deep breath and step down to the next step.

5. Wealth is my partner and my friend.

Take a deep breath and step down to the next step.

4. Wealth is joyous and delightful.

Take a deep breath and step down to the next step.

3. Wealth enters into all and every aspect of my life.

Take a deep breath and step down to the next step.

2. I am on my way to wealth …

Now take a deep breath and JUMP off the last step and onto the next level:

1. I AM WEALTHY!

Clap your hands and give yourself a round of applause!

If you enjoyed this exercise, by all means come along and sign up for the full course – it is entirely FREE and not only that, we have some fascinating bonuses too.

Think wealthy, FEEL wealthy and BECOME WEALTHY!

Silvia Hartmann

Alcohol And Exercise

On Friday afternoon after you leave work, you probably
think about going out and having a few drinks with
friends to relax and wind down. Even though you
may think you deserve to go out and have a few drinks,
there are some things that you should certainly keep
in mind.

Like any other day, tomorrow is going to be a day
for exercise, and since you are exercising on a
regular basis, a few drinks of alcohol won’t really
hurt anything, right? Before you decide to rush out
to the local bar, there are a few things below that
you should think about before you make your choice
about going out to drink some alcohol.

Research has proven that even small amounts of
alcohol with increase muscular endurance and the output
of strength, although these types of benefits are
very short lived. After 20 minutes or so, the
problems will begin to surface. All of the negative
side effects associated with alcohol will easily
outweigh any possible benefits that it can have.
No matter how you look at it, alcohol is a poison
that can really harm your body if you aren’t careful.

The negative side of alcohol can reduce your
strength, endurance, aerobic capability, recovery
time, ability to metabolize fat, and even your
muscle growth as well. Alcohol will also have an
effect on your nervous system and brain. If you
use it long term, you can cause severe deterioration
of your central nervous system. Even with short
term use, nerve muscle interaction can be reduced
which will result in a loss of strength.

Once alcohol reaches the blood cells, it can and
probably will damage them. With alcohol users,
inflammation of the muscle cells is a very common
thing. Over periods of time, some of these cells
that have been damaged can die which will result
in less functional muscle contractions. Drinking
alcohol will also leave you with more soreness of
your muscles after you exercise, which means that
it will take you a lot longer to recuperate.

Alcohol will also have many different effects on
your heart and circulatory system as well. When
you drink any type of alcohol, you may begin to
see a reduction in your endurance capabilities.
Anytime you drink, your heat loss will increase,
due to the alcohol simulating your blood vessels
to dilate. The loss in heat can cause your
muscles to become quite cold, therefore become
slower and weaker during your muscle contractions.

Drinking alcohol can also lead to digestive and
nutrition problems as well. Alcohol cause a
release of insulin that will increase the metabolism
of glycogen, which spares fat and makes the loss
of fat very hard. Due to alcohol interfering
with the absorption of several key nutrients, you
can also become anemic and deficient with B type
vitamins.

Because your liver is the organ that detoxifies
alcohol, the more you drink, the harder your liver
has to work. The extra stress alcohol places on
your liver can cause serious damage and even
destroy some of your liver cells.

Since alcohol is diuretic, drinking large amounts
can put a lot of stress on your kidneys as well.
During diuretic action, the hormones are secreted.
This can lead to heightened water retention and no
one who exercises will want this to happen.

If you must drink alcohol, you should do it in
moderation and never drink before you exercise, as
this will impair your balance, coordination, and
also your judgement. Think about your health and
how you exercise – and you may begin to look at
things from a whole new prospective.

Teaching training and exercising Aikido

Since the development of Aikido from the hands of its founder Morihei Ueshiba, it has gone through drastic changes. From the technique, practice, purpose, teaching, and training, Aikido is being interpreted in so many ways. Despite these glaring changes, the basic principle of Aikido still remains: a martial art that aims to achieve peace and harmony without instigating attack and force.

BEFORE YOU PRACTICE

If you are into aikido and already been enrolled in one of the classes, you must familiarize yourself with everything that you need to know about the martial art. You must realize that the practice of aikido starts once you have entered the „dojo“ or the place where demonstrations, teachings, and training take place.

The aikido trainees are instructed and expected to exercise and observe proper etiquette at all times. Here are some guidelines for those you have just started exercising or training for aikido:

1. Attendance is important and a must. Indeed, the only way for you to improve in aikido is by attending regular classes and continuous training. Although attendance is not mandatory in most dojos, you better keep in mind that for you to learn and master aikido, you must be there when you have training so you wouldn’t miss any of the aikido teachings and trainings.

Most aikido practitioners suggest that for a student to advance in aikido, he or she should practice at least twice a week. Aside from not missing out something, attending aikido classes regularly can also help you cultivate self-discipline.

2. Make your training your own responsibility. Just like in any martial art training, Aikido requires attention and dedication from you. And since you are the one who is interested in learning the martial, you should also be the one in-charge of your own exercise and training. Once you have decided to practice Aikido, it is given that you should be the one who is responsible for your proficiency and improvement.

Although instructors and senior students will be there to guide you, they wouldn’t be the one responsible for your improvement. So if you really want to improve in this martial art, make sure that you observe effectively before asking for any help and that you try to learn the techniques on your own first before you partake in any demonstration.

3. Bear in mind that Aikido training includes more than one technique. Aside from the physical demonstrations, training in aikido includes observation and modification of both physical and psychological patterns of the students‘ thought and behavior. Since there are so many techniques to learn, an aikido student should be ready to react to circumstances so he or she can cultivate awareness.

4. Memorize the basic teachings and principles of the martial art. Aikido is known as one of the non-aggressive means of self-defense. That is why most aikido trainings involve cooperative activities.

In order to learn and excel in the martial art, you must be cooperative enough with your partner so you will both reap the benefits of aikido. Make sure that you’re careful when training and practicing aikido because some of the techniques can kill or damage when not practice judiciously.

5. Be prepared for anything and everything. Exercising, teaching, and training in Aikido is not simple. Because of the dynamic nature of the martial art, it can be very frustrating if you haven’t prepared yourself mentally, emotionally, and physically. Part of the training is learning to cope with frustrations that come along the training.

The best solution whenever frustration sets in is that the practitioner should observe what is or are the possible causes of this frustration and how can they overcome these challenges. They should avoid comparing themselves with others and continue improving their techniques.

NATO Classic Self Defeating Exercise

If you think that you are aware of what’s going on in Afghanistan today, think again. The very people—politicians, generals and journalists–feeding you information on the Afghan matrix are unsure about both, their facts and their conclusions.

A few days after it was announced that Afghanistan’s opium production may well exceed 53% of national GDP in 2007, an investigative reporter asked an officer inside the UN’s Office on Drugs and Crime about the impact (i.e. the futility) of hundreds of millions of dollars spent on poppy eradication and crop substitution schemes since the Taliban were forced out of Kabul in late 2001. “We don’t appear to achieve anything credible,” the officer acknowledged on condition of anonymity. “In fact, we just do our best, year after year.”

An Afghan volunteer supporting NATO’s drug eradication programmes was a bit more precise when confronted with the hard fact that more than 660 tons of opium and morphine, valued at US$4 billion, have been exported from Afghanistan last year. “We keep telling the small farmers to grow poppy substitutes and they keep telling us that they don’t own the land, they don’t have title,” the volunteer revealed in a private conversation. “It is obvious that the warlords and clerics determine who grows what and where, not the farmers we keep talking to daily.” The volunteer appeared to have no idea whether the various groups currently directing crop cultivation—drug kingpins, pro-Taliban Mullahs and religious radicals—were working in conjunction or otherwise.

In 1978, there were hardly any poppy fields in Afghanistan, despite the fact that the trade in drugs was flourishing in Pakistan’s North West Frontier Province. In 1978, despite a deep-rooted feudal structure in the countryside, where the majority of Afghans lived, Afghanistan was substantively self-sufficient in food. In 1978, the Afghan government determined that economic and social progress in Afghanistan could only take place if (a) land reform laws were effectively implemented, (b) the huge rural debt due to moneylenders was cancelled without delay and (c) adequate rural credit was made available to small farmers.

After all, as a foreign economist visiting Afghanistan at that time concluded that “without fundamental changes in the agrarian milieu, this country will not achieve any breakthrough whatsoever. This is primarily an agricultural country, and a complex one at that, and there is now an urgent need to sharply increase investments in rural infrastructure, in order to raise productivity, and to improve the quality and packaging of output.”

But that vision of an economically resurgent Afghanistan was in tatters well before the reform agenda threatened to become a viable reality. The anti-Soviet Jihad of the 1980s set Afghanistan on a different path altogether. Land records were destroyed in more than 80% of the provinces. Freshly-armed tribal chiefs forced sharecroppers and landless labourers to grow poppies instead of grains, fruit and vegetables. Militias under the umbrella of self-proclaimed freedom fighters, like Osama Bin Laden and Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, opened up new drug smuggling routes to Central Asia, the Middle East and Europe. And, in the midst of the complete transformation (i.e. a deterioration) in Afghan agriculture over a 5-6 year period, village Mullahs, many of whom landowners in their right, were telling poor Afghans that “only Allah can give you land, not the communists.”

Today, twenty years later, the issue of land titles is mired in even greater confusion. Some of the refugees returning home from Pakistan and Iran have indeed been allotted land; but, in the absence of access to reasonable credit, refugee families are rapidly falling into the same old cycle of perpetual debt. Land officials in Kabul, attempting to formalize a land title regime to be applied throughout Afghanistan at some point in the future, are confronted by the challenge of possession. “Here possession is 100% of the game, and we all know who has possession of the vast majority of fertile land,” a UN aid worker explained. “By our estimates, 95% of fertile land is in physically in the hands of only 2% of the population, and it is not difficult to see who comprises that 2%.”

Not that Afghanistan’s landholding ratios by themselves are alarming by third-world standards. South Africa, to cite just one example, has failed miserably in delivering land reforms, a good 13 years since the end of Apartheid. What makes Afghanistan unique is that the impact of those ratios is compounded by the absence of a secure land title system, and by the desire of those influencing the use of agricultural land to grow poppies for profit.

But wait. There are a few more depressing statistics which you need to be aware of. The wholesale price of a gram of heroin is a mere US$2.50 in Afghanistan. Just beyond Afghanistan’s borders, in Iran and in Pakistan, a gram changes hands at US$3.50. That figure reaches US$10 by the time the heroin reaches Turkey, Kosovo and Albania. Today’s wholesale price in Europe ranges between US$22 and US$33 per gram. One final note: retail prices can be more than 10 times higher on the street.

Just do the maths, and figure out the phenomenal impact Afghan poppies are having on an entire array of economies. At the same time, the situation inside Afghanistan, and along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, can only be subject to a credible determination once some basic questions are answered.

Are those so-called religious extremists—Al Qaeda and the Taliban—simply glorified drug traders? “They don’t seem to be doing much praying in the mosques around here,” an Afghan border guard told a British journalist at a busy Kandahar border crossing, as donkey-drawn carts moved weapons, whiskey and pirated Bollywood videos in the vicinity.

The second set of questions must be addressed with an elevated degree of seriousness. Who else, besides these militants, is participating in the opium wealth? Are law enforcement agencies on both sides of the border actively or passive players? Finally, what kind of war is NATO actually fighting when more than a few backers of the Karzi government are widely suspected of being direct beneficiaries of the Afghanistan’s opium export boom?

Without comprehensive answers to a series of fundamental and disturbing questions, talk of Afghanistan’s reconstruction is meaningless, without context, without any grasp of the reality on the ground.

Money Saving Exercise

There is a simple money saving exercise that everyone should do at least once in their lives. It is ultimately one of the best ways to save money, because it is not about pinching pennies, but about discovering what you really want and getting it. It is so simple you may hesitate to try it. Just try it. Here it is:

List everything that you have spent money on, are currently spending money on, or might spend money on.

Don’t just read this and think of a few things. Take the time to actually write it all down. Review your bank statements if you have to, in order to remember and include everything.

Now go through the list, and carefully consider each item. Take the most time on the big items – past, present and future possibilities. If your timeshare on the beach is worth half what you paid, costs $1,000 per year in expenses, and is rarely used, you need to learn from that – not to punish yourself, but to have a richer life.

If you think honestly about the number of times you will use that Recreational Vehicle, and the cost, it may be $250 for each day of use. That’s okay if that is worth it to you, but maybe you really would enjoy $100 hotels more. Or maybe you can rent an RV for less overall cost, thus freeing up money for other important goals.

You see, saving money isn’t about sacrifice. We all are aware of the scrooges in life that pinch their pennies, bank the savings, and then do nothing with it. The point should be to save money in one area of life so you can use it in ways that make your whole life richer.

Suppose you notice you’re spending $8 per month on subscriptions to magazine you don’t read, or on insurance for a motorcycle you almost never ride? Cancel the subscriptions or sell the
motorcycle, and what have you lost? Is it a big deal? What will that $8 get you instead?

– Bank it for ten years, and use the $1200 to take a second honeymoon.

– Use it to pay for a day off work once a year, to spend with the kids.

– Invest it, to have an extra $50 per month during your retirement years.

– Buy six good books a year, to learn something new.

– Make banana splits for the family once a month.

– Give $100 per year to a worthy cause.

$8 per month can do a lot if used wisely. Imagine what you could do if you stopped wasting $200 per month. That’s why it is so important to discover what you really want – and what you don’t want. This is one of the most intelligent ways to save money.

Parenting Tips To Help Your Child Get More Exercise

Was parenting easier forty years ago?

As a mom in the new millennium, I dream about the idea of parenting in a world where streets are safe and parents can let their children run freely through the neighborhood, their bodies naturally challenged with the exercise of play.

Instead today, before the slam of the car door fades and the backpack drops on the floor, the TV is switched on and the last few hours of daylight disappear in a haze of video games and over processed snack foods.

Even the concerned, well-meaning parent can often stand helpless, wondering how to compete against marketing genius and instant gratification. Exercise and carrot sticks have a hard time competing with Xboxes, SpongeBob and potato chips.

The proof is all around us. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the health of too many North Americans is in danger because of unhealthy lifestyles. (www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpa/obesity)

The latest data from the National Center for Health Statistics show that 30 percent of U.S. adults 20 years of age and older – over 60 million people – are obese. The CDC reports the percentage of young people who are overweight has more than tripled since 1980.

My kids aren’t obese – why should I be concerned?

Your kids are normal, right? You are parenting just fine. But in a world where walking is limited, school P.E. programs are being cut, and cars, elevators and buses eliminate our chance to exercise naturally, we need to make a concerted effort to make physical activity part of our day and our children’s days.

Despite all the benefits of being physically active, most Americans are sedentary. (www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpa/obesity/contributing_factors.htm). Inactive children are likely to become inactive adults. (www.americanheart.org/presenter.jhtml?identifier=4596)

So as parents how can we get our kids moving?

„The American Heart Association recommends that children and adolescents participate in at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity every day.“

The great news is exercise comes in many forms and can be a lot of fun! With a little creativity you can easily add some fun physical activity into your parenting style.

1. Lead the way

You need to set a good example. Kids, especially younger children, naturally follow their parents. So make sure you are looking after your own health and making physical activity a priority in your life.

2. Do it together

In today’s overscheduled world, we need to make sure we are spending quality time with our children. What better way than to be active together. Since kids can’t be alone roaming the neighborhood, parents need to play with them.

3. Make it fun

Put on some music and dance. Play tag. Roller blade. Basically just play. Provide them with toys and equipment that encourage them to be active while having fun.

Bikes, scooters, hockey sticks and baseball bats will get your kids moving and active. For preschool children, ride on toys that get them exercising like pedal cars, big wheels and tricycles are always a great parenting decision.

4. Cheer them on

Create positive reinforcements with encouragement and support. Help them find sports and activities that build their self esteem. Attend their sporting events and let them know you are their biggest fan whether they win or lose.

5. Turn it off

Of course, we need to limit the time our kids watch TV and play video games. But make sure you do it in a positive way. If they are angry that you just turned off their favorite show, they might not be too excited about going out rollerblading with you.

Allow screen time during designated hours, preferably after homework is done and when physical activity is finished, like in the evening or on Saturday morning when tired parents might need to catch a few extra minutes of sleep.

Adding more physical activity into your family’s routine will help you all feel better and get you having more fun together. Most importantly, as you model a healthy lifestyle you will help instill in your children lifelong habits and healthy attitudes toward exercise and physical activity.