Strength Training 101

Each time you strength train a muscle, you’re causing micro-tears in the muscle fibers. But that’s a good thing, because when these tissues repair themselves, they rebuild stronger than before. Do this steadily and progressively, increasing the overall intensity from week to week, and your body will respond with new increases in strength and lean muscle mass. Do too much too soon, and you’ll wind up with an injury in the form of a muscle or tendon tear or strain. But if you never deviate from what you always do, you’ll never see any improvement (and you’ll be wasting your precious time as well.)

Functional Fitness

Functional fitness is about preparing you for life, rather than something specific like a big race or setting a new personal best on the bench press. Things like squatting down to pick something off the floor, turning and reaching for an item on a high shelf, or carrying a child on your hip or a heavy suitcase.

Get excited about exercise: try something new!

Human beings are creatures of habit. Most of us find comfort in consistency, at least to some degree. Making exercise a consistent habit is one of the best things you can do for yourself. But – when it comes to exercise, having a habit is good, but repeating the same workouts over and over often isn’t. The solution: try something new!

The Great Debate: Cardio or Weights?

Exercisers seem to fall into two distinct “camps” – the strength trainers and the cardio lovers. The strength trainers are pushing the free weights, resistance machines and barbells, whereas the cardio lovers are on their ellipticals, stair machines, and treadmills, and having fun in Zumba classes. So which is really better?

Exercise and Your Metabolism

Many people blame their metabolism as a reason beyond their control for why they are overweight, claiming those gifted with a “better” metabolism can eat anything they want and never gain pound. Metabolisms seem to be either fast or slow, high or low. But just what is your metabolism, then? What role does it play in body weight and body composition (muscle vs. fat tissue)? And how does exercise influence metabolism?

Are you sabotaging your workout?

Are you spending hours in the gym every week and not seeing any results? It just might be that you’ve developed some habits that may be sabotaging your success, without even realizing it. Here are six of the most common workout habits to change now – and see improved weight loss and body composition while becoming more efficient in the process.

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