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Back basics

Back pain’s sting is unforgettable and, unfortunately, not uncommon. About one million workers suffer back injuries each year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. An athletic, flexible physique and strong abdominal muscles are great prevention measures. But even fitness fiends must be cautious when hauling heavy objects. Here are some tips:

  • Warm up. Stretching is advisable before every physical activity. Before lifting, make sure your back, arms, and legs are loose.

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  • Know proper technique. Use slow, smooth movements, and keep the load near your body and between your shoulders and waist. Bend your knees and lift with your legs while keeping your back straight. Avoid twisting or jerking motions.

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  • Pace yourself. Heavy hoisting requires rest, early and often. When possible, separate bigger hauls into lighter loads.

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  • Know your limits. Don’t try to be Superman or Wonder Woman — get help with heavy items.

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  • Seek a firm foundation. Wear stable shoes, and look for any slippery or dangerous surfaces.

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  • Manage stress. Be extra careful when stressed — tense muscles pose an additional injury threat.

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If you suffer from back pain, take the HealthMedia® program, Care® for Your Back to learn ways to manage and prevent back injuries.

How To Do 100 Pushups

How To Do 100 Pushups
 
What's the best upper body muscle building exercise that anyone can
 do anytime and anywhere?
 


 The answer is pushups.
 


 Pushups work the chest, shoulders, triceps, but due to the position 
and the fact that you have to hold your body straight and rigid, they
 involve almost every muscle in the body.
 


 If you can do 20 that’s not too bad, if you can do 50 you’re above 
average and if you want to join the elite club you'll want to 
work up to 100 push ups without stopping.


 
I'll bet even the strongest beach presser in your gym can't do 
100 pushups in a row.


 
Working up to this level will not only build up your chest but
 also give you awesome strength and endurance.


 
Here is a simple program to help you reach the goal of 100 pushups.


 
Do your pushups workouts 3 days a week such as Monday, Wednesday 
and Friday.


 
For your first set do as many pushup as you can, lets say for 
example you do 30.


 
Rest 1 minute.


 
Do another set of as many as you can, lets say for example you 
do 20 this time.


So far you've done 50 total.
 


 Rest 1 minute.


Do another set and keep this up as many as you can followed by
 1 minute rest and another set until you hit a total of 100 reps.


 
Ok, now over the next several weeks you are going to work on 
increasing the reps you can do each set while also decreasing the
 rest time by 10 seconds every week.


In about 7 weeks you should be able to do 100 push ups without 
stopping.


 
If you missed that goal you still should be able to do more 
pushups now then ever before, and to reach the goal of 100
 just go back to week 1 and do the cycle all over again.


For more information on bodyweight workouts checkout 
http://list.netatlantic.com/t/58634171/39727547/151932/0/

> 5 Great Ways to Burn More Fat

 5 Great Ways to Burn More Fat 
 
1. Do not eat poor quality carbohydrates before going to sleep. Poor 
quality carbohydrates are those that contain sugar or are highly 
processed. These would include most breakfast cereals, breads, snack 
foods, candies, and even fruits and juices. Eating these foods 
immediately prior to sleeping will likely result in increased fat 
deposit and will prevent your body from maintaining a successful 
fat-burning mode.


2. The more lean muscle you have, the more calories your body will 
burn even at rest. Muscle is extremely active metabolically. Do 
some resistance training, add some muscle, and crank up that 
metabolism.
 


 3. Never let yourself get too hungry, or too stuffed. It really is 
all about moderation. Time your meals so that you eat before you are 
starving . . . doing this one simple thing will cause you to almost 
always eat less. When you do eat, stop when your satisfied not when 
you are so stuffed you cannot even get down another bite.
 


 4. Double up on your cardio training. From time to time it may be 
beneficial to the fat-burning process for you to split your cardio 
training into two short sessions rather than one longer one. Studies 
suggest that people who do 30 minutes of morning cardio and then 30 
minutes of evening cardio lose more fat than those doing just one 
60 minute session.
 


 5. Eat more high fiber foods. Most of us do not get enough fiber 
in our daily diets, and that's just a shame. Fiber not only promotes 
overall general health, but also can significantly aid in your 
fat-burning efforts. Leafy greens and salads are ideal sources 
of fiber.

Step it up

Yes, it’s true. Moving the equivalent of 10,000 steps a day can help you maintain and even lose weight when combined with a healthy diet. But for most Americans, sedentary jobs, commutes, packed schedules, and family commitments make getting in even 6,000 steps a day a daunting task. Follow these tips for adding as many as 2,000 steps to your day:

·         Hi-ho to work… and back again. Exchange your high heels or leather loafers for a pair of sneakers and hoof it to your workplace. If your commute is farther than you can muster, turn your lunch break into a walk-and-talk stroll with a coworker.

·         Go the distance. Bypass the elevator for the stairs, park as far from the entrance as you can, and consider which errands you can cover on foot.

·         Take up child’s play. Chances are you’re transporting younger kids to the park or older kids to an extracurricular activity at least once a week. Use these opportunities to play with them on the jungle gym or run across the field. Or take a 10- to 20-minute walk between dropping them off and picking them up.

Invest in a pedometer. For an accurate count of your daily steps, strap on a pedometer before you leave the house each morning. It’s a great way to get in tune with your activity level and get motivated to move more.

Breathe through your walk

Breathe through your walk

Taking a walk is one of the best things you can do for your overall health, and it benefits people of all fitness levels. For more experienced walkers looking to add technique to their experience, try something “new”: breathing! It can be easy to take for granted one of life’s simple pleasures. As you walk, you can have fun experimenting with your breath:
  • Draw air through your nose and out your mouth.

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  • Maintain a rhythm — inhaling for three counts and exhaling for the same is a good guideline.

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  • Translate your breathing pattern into your steps, building your stride around the same rhythm.

  •  

Most of us don’t think much about breathing, but it’s a good reminder that it does more than just deliver oxygen to your muscles and brain — it also helps streamline your efforts and add momentum to energize your walks.

What is the ACSM recommendation for Cardio Exercise?

What Is the ACSM Recommendation for Cardio Exercise?

Regular cardiovascular exercise, also known as aerobic exercise, is one of the best things you can do to improve your overall health, according to the Harvard School of Public Health. Popular aerobic exercises include brisk walking, running, swimming and cycling, but other activities that increase your heart rate for a period of time can also count. The American College of Sports Medicine, or ACSM, has made recommendations to help you gain maximum benefits from your aerobic exercise workouts.

 

Frequency

 

The ACSM recommends aerobic exercise between three and five days a week, depending on the intensity of your exercise sessions. If you typically exercise at a moderate intensity, you should do aerobic exercise approximately five days a week. If your aerobic workout sessions are at a vigorous pace, you can do them three days a week. The ACSM suggests that a combination of moderate and vigorous workouts done between three and five days a week can help you achieve and maintain maximum health and fitness benefits.

 

Intensity

 

One way the ACSM defines your workout intensity is by your heart rate. Moderate exercise is defined as 64 percent to 76 percent of your maximum heart rate, and vigorous exercise is defined by the ASCM as 77 percent to 93 percent of your maximal heart rate. You can estimate your maximal heart rate by subtracting your age from 220. You can also multiply your age by 0.67 and subtract the result from 206.9.

 

Duration

 For most adults, the ACSM recommends aerobic exercise sessions that last at least 30 minutes. If you are exercising at a vigorous intensity, your sessions should last 20 to 25 minutes. For weight loss, the ACSM suggests that 60 minutes or more of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise may be necessary. Your aerobic workouts can be done all in one session or in shorter exercise sessions throughout the day, as long as they last at least 10 minutes. These intermittent exercise sessions can provide the same benefits as continuous exercise.   

Considerations

 Check with your doctor before beginning an exercise program if you have been sedentary or if you have a chronic condition that may affect your ability to safely exercise. Once cleared by your doctor, choose exercises and activities that you enjoy, which can help you stick with an aerobic routine, says the ACSM. Always begin and end your exercise session with a warm-up and a cool-down, and gradually work your way up to the recommended amount of exercise to prevent potential overuse injuries. 

WHAT ARE THE ACSM GUIDELINES FOR STRENGTH TRAINING?

What Are the ACSM Guidelines for Strength Training?

According to its website, the American College of Sports Medicine, founded in 1954, is the largest sports medicine and exercise science organization in the world, with more than 20,000 members. As part of its mission to enhance health and fitness, ACSM publishes physical activity guidelines for the public. As of August 2011, ACSM's most recent strength-training guidelines were published in 2009. This position statement provides the basic guidelines and principles for designing a resistance-training program.

 

Frequency

ACSM recommends that healthy adults younger than 65 strength train two times per week and that healthy adults older than 65 strength train two or three times per week. The latter recommendation is also for adults between the ages of 50 and 64 who suffer from any type of chronic condition such as arthritis. These guidelines may seem counterintuitive because ACSM recommends that the older population work out more, but the design of the workout for those younger than 65 is more intense than for those older than 65.

 Sets and Reps

For healthy adults younger than 65, ACSM recommends completing eight to 12 repetitions of eight to 10 exercises each. For healthy adults older than 65, ACSM recommends completing 10 to 15 repetitions each of eight to 10 exercises. Select a weight that you hit volitional fatigue within the given repetition range. Volitional fatigue means you stop the set when you don't think you could lift one more repetition with proper form. When you can complete one to two repetitions more than the prescribed repetition range, increase the weight by 2 to 10 percent.

 ExercisesChoose exercises that target all of the major muscle groups. Include compound and isolation exercises, but focus most of your training around compound exercises. Isolation exercises are single-joint movements that target only one muscle group. Triceps pressdowns and biceps curls are isolation exercises. Compound exercises are multijoint movements that work more than one muscle group. Squats, chest presses, overhead presses and deadlifts are compound exercises.  

Considerations

Learn the proper technique for each exercise. Do not use momentum or jerky motions to move a weight. Start with light weights and increase the resistance over time as you become stronger. Do not hold your breath. Exhale during the exertion phase of the movement and inhale during the lowering phase.



These are basic guidelines for those seeking general health and fitness benefits. If you are training for a specific goal, such as muscle growth or strength, you will need to adjust your program.
 

Cardio contraptions

If you’ve peered inside a gym and seen scores of sweaty exercisers working away on stationary equipment, it may look imposing — or perhaps boring. But those fitness tools are admired for a reason: improved cardio health, from better sleep and more energy to reduced stress and more confidence.

 

Though running, jogging, and walking are great outdoors, those preferring to break a sweat indoors can choose from treadmills, step machines, elliptical trainers, rowing machines, and stationary bikes. Here are four signs of a successful cardio machine workout:

 

1. It’s enjoyable. Sidestep monotony with cardio variety — the spice of exercise success. Those 30–minute workouts — a common cardio benchmark — won’t seem so dull or strenuous.

 

2. Your heart’s pumping. During prolonged periods of elevated heart rate, cardio machines can burn calories and fat while improving heart and lung function.

 

3. The machine suits your physical needs. Consider existing health and injury concerns before beginning. Stationary bikes provide more back support, while elliptical trainers and stair steppers can be less stressful on joints.

 

4. You’re achieving results. Stationary bikes and treadmills emphasize leg strength, while rowing machines and elliptical trainers offer both upper– and lower–body workouts. The right machine will thrust you through that daily fitness finish line.

How to clean fresh produce

Springtime brings with it a whole new host of fresh seasonal produce and herbs. But while spring specialties (like nutrient-rich strawberries, artichokes, and cherries) burst onto your palate with enticing flavors, they often carry microbial passengers that could make you sick.

Even organic fruits and veggies, especially when eaten raw, must be cleaned properly to remove as many surface germs as possible. But do you need an expensive produce wash, or can a simple wipe with your shirt do the trick?The editors of Cook’s Illustrated conducted a study to help answer that question. Turns out your best bet in removing microbes is good old-fashioned vinegar water.

 The solution of one part white vinegar to three parts water, followed by a rinse of pure water, was enough to wipe away 98 percent of bacteria—better than a scrub brush, plain water, or antibacterial soap (which isn’t recommended anyway).

Other tips to consider:

 

·         Soak fruits and veggies first for about two minutes before rinsing to help dislodge particles

 

.·         Slice both ends off the fruit or vegetable to remove the areas that generally gather the most microbes

.·         Gut out the bruised spots; they serve as a breeding ground for harmful bacteria.Use a fresh paper towel to help remove any remaining germs.

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