Friday, May 31, 2013

Plateaus and boredom can be conquered

Avoid Plateaus And Cure Boredom
by Jackie Burgmann, author of “Hot at Home” – The Transformation Solution for People Who Hate The Gym

You’ve been working out for a while now and have seen some results.

But now you’ve either hit a plateau and have stopped seeing results … or you’re just flat out getting bored.

The stuff you’ve been doing up until now has been fun but enough is enough and you need a new challenge.

Does this sound like you?

I’ve been there, you’ve been there … I think we’ve ALL been there.

The good news is that plateaus and boredom can be conquered.

The answer is simple. If you’re not already doing them, start grouping your exercises into supersets.

Here’s the concept: put two (or three) non-competing weight training exercises together into a set called a superset, do them in succession without rest. You’ll soon feel your heart rate jack through the roof and that ‘muscle pump’ make your skin feel tight.

Here’s how to work it: when pairing up moves, choose non-competing exercises like a pulling move with a pushing move or a chest exercise with a back exercise where one body part can be resting while the other is working.

For instance, if you pair a “push” move like a chest press and a “pull” move like a back row then your chest muscles are working while your back muscles are resting, and vice versa.

Or try an upper body move like a chest flye and pair it with a lower body move like a squat.

Or you could even try a pairing a larger muscle group move like a back move with a smaller muscle group like a move for your calves or triceps. Although be careful with this kind of combination, because most back exercises require your biceps also work, so pairing a back exercise with a bicep exercise won’t be quite as effective if you’re exhausting your biceps while trying to work your back.

Now that you have your exercises grouped into pairs, take those two moves and do all the prescribed reps for the first set of the first move, then, without resting at all, move on to the prescribed reps for the 2nd move.

Then, again without resting, move back to the first move and do all the prescribed reps for your 2nd set.

Wash, rinse and repeat until all your sets are done.

You can do this for your entire workout, pairing up exercises and supersetting them, until all of your exercises are done in record time.

Doing your usual workout routine in supersets can really help alleviate the boredom that can be caused by all the rest periods between sets when you are doing a regular stacked routine where you complete a set of one exercise then rest, then repeat the same exercise and rest again (mostly because there won’t be nearly as many rest periods).

Take a minimal rest in between supersets while you get a drink of water and set up your equipment for the next superset but don’t rest during your supersets. Look how much time saved that you might have used resting, otherwise!

Now, if you want to make it even more fun and more challenging you can crank up your superset concept by grouping even more exercises into sets.

These are called supercircuits.

This is almost the same concept except you take your entire routine of 5 – 10 exercises and perform the first set for every move all in a row, in order, without resting, until you’ve done them all once. That’s one supercircuit.

Then a quick, short rest to recover enough to do it all over again then get to work doing all the moves again in the same order, to complete supercircuit number two.

Another short rest period and then move on to circuit number three. Keep going for your prescribed number of sets until you’ve done your entire workout.

If you’re already using supersets or supercircuits in your workouts but you’re experiencing a plateau or suffering from boredom anyway, then it’s time change your supersets or supercircuit around completely.

Try putting more exercises together into the same superset. If you’re doing two exercises in each superset, increase to 3 or 4 exercises per superset.

You can also increase or decrease the number of reps you’re performing with each set or decrease or increase the weight you’re lifting with each rep.

Or change which exercises you’re performing for each body part. If you’re doing dumbbell chest presses, change it to push-ups. If you’re doing dumbbell back rows, try doing cable / fitness band rows or hanging body rows.

Or, put your exercises in a different order. If you’re working legs first, work legs last instead.

You can choose to do only one or two of these things for a quick adjustment on the fly, or change them all completely if you feel a need for an extreme modification to really confuse your body and get it out of its complacency fast (or cure yourself of your boredom in a big way).

You’ll find supersets and supercircuits are a fun, new and challenging way to get through your usual workout.

You’ll get your heart rate up, you’ll build muscle and you’ll burn fat, all in an efficient, effective and interesting manner.

Now that’s how to get off a plateau and bust boredom!

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Plateaus are frustrating and boredom can really get in the way of getting an effective workout. “Hot at Home” includes over 40 weeks of fat-burning workouts that ensure you’ll never get bored or stuck on a frustrating plateau. Get more information here: Hot at Home

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Moms: Are You Ready for the Beach?

It’s that time of year again…the time that the kids look forward to all summer long, but most moms dread: summer time. Summer itself isn’t necessarily the thing that causes moms to worry. After all, the kids spend more time outside during the summer playing and swimming. Then there are summer league sports that a lot of kids participate in. So, why do a lot of mothers dread the summer? The swim suit.

That’s right. It’s getting in a swim suit. Remember when it used to be fun to go and shop for the perfect bathing suit? Trying on ten to twenty different suits wasn’t a big deal and you didn’t mind stepping out the dressing room with it for your friends, either. Yeah….more than likely that was before the kids came.

There’s no denying that a woman’s body changes after kids are born. While almost all women would gladly do it over again for their children, the stretch marks, flabby belly and sagging breasts are definitely not something women like to show off. And, that is exactly what a swimming suit does! It has a tendency to highlight all of the areas that mothers like to hide after the kiddos arrive.

However, there are a few things moms can do to get ready for summer and that dreaded swim suit. By following the tips below, not only will moms feel better about getting in a swimming suit, but they will look better too, which will definitely lead to more enjoyment when swimming with the family. So, what do you do to get ready for the beach, as a mom?

1. Start dieting now. I’m sure this one comes to no surprise to you, but the truth of the matter is that if moms want to feel better about themselves this summer, in a bathing suit, they are going to have to diet. Now is the perfect time to start. The holidays are over so there are going to be exorbitant amounts of sweets and other delectable treats lying around, just waiting to be devoured and there are still three months left before the official “swim” season is here.

So, what is the best way to diet? Honestly, this is an individual decision and it is whatever works best for the person dieting. One thing to think about when choosing a particular diet is whether or not the diet is reasonable and does it promote a healthy lifestyle change that can be maintained once the diet is over? There are too many fad diets out there that just aren’t plausible for real, long-term weight loss and weight management.

The rule of thumb a lot of nutritionists go by is that dieting should be a lifestyle change. Therefore, you shouldn’t have to spend a lot of money to do it. For example, Body by Vi is a popular fad diet right now. While the shakes are great for getting the vitamins your body needs, and people do lose weight on it, is it really plausible that you will spend money for the rest of your life on this product? And, if you are strictly doing the Body by Vi diet, how likely is it that you will be able to keep the weight off once you stop the diet?

In conclusion, one of the best ways to go about dieting is to learn how to count calories. Talk to a nutritionist, personal trainer or doctor and determine how many calories you need per day in order to lose the amount of weight you want to lose before mid-summer. Losing two pounds per week is a very realistic goal to have when counting calories. And, counting calories teaches you how to lose/manage weight by eating real foods that you are around every day. Therefore, it’s something you can do the rest of your life and it won’t cost you a dime…just a little time! For those with iPhones or Android phones, the My Fitness Pal app is wonderful for this method of dieting.

2. Hit the Gym. Obviously, it will take more than dieting for moms to get their bodies ready for the beach this summer. Toning is also needed. In order to tone, one has to hit the gym and start lifting weights and doing a little cardio on a regular basis. Finding the time can be difficult for busy moms to do, but where there is a will there is always a way.

For instance, working moms can choose to visit a nearby gym on their lunch breaks or take 30 minutes to get some cardio in on their way home from work. Stay at home moms generally have a more flexible schedule where they can fit in an hour during their day, but if they can’t get away, then they can always invest in a workout video at home to do alone.

Exercising on a regular basis helps the body drop weight faster, manage existing weight loss, improve cardiovascular health and tone. While all of these things are good, in order to get ready for swimsuit season, it’s the toning that moms need the most. Losing weight is great, but without toning, skin begins to look flabby….not a good thing while strolling around in your favorite bathing suit. So, what are you waiting for? Get out, hit the gym three to five times a week and tone!

3. Get Tan. There’s just something about being tan that makes women feel better in a bathing suit. Women don’t have to go to the tanning “salon” every day in order to get a great tan. Women can get tans by sunbathing outside, swimming, doing yard work and a number of other outside activities. However, if you feel like you don’t have time to get a natural sun tan, tanning beds are a great option…especially for maintaining the tan.

4. Find the Right Bathing Suit. Bathing suits are kind of like bras…you really do pay for what you get. Sure, cute bathing suits can be found at Wal-Mart and other department stores, but they aren’t going to be able to do the same quality of “job” as one from a place like Victoria’s Secret.

Honestly, Victoria’s Secret is one of the best places for moms to shop for bathing suits. Yes, they are more expensive, but the bathing suit will last for several years and moms will be able to find suits that help “fix” certain areas. For instance, there are bathing suits with figure-slimming features, tummy “tuck” features and even built in bras (pushup bras too) for additional support.

Hitting the beach, for most moms, is not something they look forward to. However, when the tips above are followed, the swimsuit season can be enjoyable again for mothers and their children!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Got Bad Shoulders? Here's How You Can STILL Do Overhead Pressing Pain-Free

One of the things that shoulder press exercises have in common  is that when your shoulders are tweaked (i.e. injured,
unstable or just not quite right) many of these pressing variations can cause pain. This exercise variation can help you press without pain!

Read the complete article < < < Click Here!

 

Don’t waste your time on these ineffective exercises

Avoid These Ineffective Exercises
by Jackie Burgmann, author of “Hot at Home” – The Transformation Solution for People Who Hate The Gym

It’s true that getting SOME exercise is definitely better than getting NO exercise.

And while some might argue that there is no WRONG way to exercise (as long as you’re being safe and using proper form), and that it’s more important to just GET MOVING (which I tend to agree on), there ARE exercises that just aren’t as effective as others.

We’re all very busy people with a limited amount of time to devote to our fitness regimes, so use your valuable time on more effective exercises than these.

So, when you’re deciding what to do for your next workout, be prepared with this little list of exercises that are best to avoid and replace with something more effective.

1) Any stair stepping machine that mimics climbing a stairwell but doesn’t require you to actually climb anything.

Climbing stairwells is awesome for a great cardio workout. You can choose steady state cardio if you have access to a huge stairwell at home, work or outdoors, just hit the bottom and climb to the top floor. Or you can do intervals if you only have a few flights to work with, run up, walk down, run up, walk down, and mix up how many floors you run up and walk down. You can even do this with just one little flight.

So, why is stair climbing on a stepper machine ineffective?

Because they HELP you do the movements.

The foot pad that’s coming UP while you’re driving one foot down is helping you bring that other foot up. You’re taking a ride more than you’re actually climbing anything.

Plus they have these nice little railings to hang on to, which most people will automatically hang on to (or even lean over the console), which removes the majority of the upper body work they could be doing.

At the very least, if one is available to you, use one of those revolving step machines where a real staircase rotates and you have to climb it without anything driving your lower foot up. But keep your hands off the railings if you want this to be truly effective. Make sure you work your upper body, too.

Plus, did you know that functionality for going DOWN staircases tends to decrease with age? So if you can choose to travel downwards during your workout, either on a real stairwell or a revolving machine, then do so! Keep yourself fully functional as you head towards your later years.

2) Elliptical.

While the elliptical is a bit better for a full body workout, for the most people, they just get a rhythm going and then ride out their entire workout, letting the machine do almost all the work for them.

And just like on the stairstepper, all they’re doing is going for a nice little ride on the darned thing.

It is possible to get a good cardio session done on an elliptical but you really have to be pulling HARD with your arms and stepping hard with your feet to make an elliptical session into a decent workout.

Tip: if you can read a magazine while you’re on an elliptical, you aren’t working hard enough.

Your best bet is to go cross country skiing in the snow or rollerblading with poles to work out all those muscles you THINK you’re working out on the elliptical.

3) Leg extension machine.

While some professional bodybuilders may want to use the leg extension machine to build a bit more definition in their quads, it can lead to imbalances if hamstrings aren’t also worked equally.

When in real life will you ever be using your quads without using your hamstrings? The leg extension machine can be stressful on the knees and also constrains your range of motion. If your legs aren’t ‘average’ in length, then the machine may not ‘fit’ you well enough to be effective or could cause injury.

For the anyone who wants to get their legs in great shape, squats and lunges are your best bets. You can choose the bodyweight versions if you’re just starting out. But, if you’re more advanced, then adding weight to your squats and lunges using dumbbells or a barbell will get you what you seek and keep you balanced.

If you’re considering using a barbell for your leg work, please see the next point first:

4) Smith machine.

The Smith machine also only offers a very limited range of motion.

All it does it go straight up and straight down, forcing you into a range of motion that might not be right for your body size and shape.

If you’re serious about working out and getting in great shape, then opt for free weights, either dumbbells or a barbell.

And, if you’re using a barbell for chest press, consider using dumbbells instead so if one arm happens to be slightly weaker than the other, the stronger arm can’t compensate for the weaker arm.

5) Any exercise involving 3lb dumbbells where one actually thinks they’re doing anything effective.

Consider this: how heavy is your purse or briefcase? Chances are pretty solid that it weighs more than those teensy, little dumbbells so ask yourself how using them to do your reps could possibly be considered a workout?

Unless you’re currently in some kind of rehab program for an injury or illness then there really isn’t a place in ANYONE’s workout for a 3lb dumbbell. You need to give your body a REASON to change before you see change. If you’re only lifting weights it has no problem lifting and is used to lifting, change won’t be happening any time soon … or ever. Believe it.

Women and men alike should be striving to lift as heavy as possible, with the goal of hitting ‘failure’ at the final rep (this means you can’t lift even one more time with proper form).

Women who are worried about bulking up can let their fears rest since women don’t produce enough testosterone to build big muscles like men can. What women can expect from lifting heavy weights is a lean, toned and fit look with nice definition in their chest, arms, back, legs and midsection.

6) Recumbent stationary bike.

While cycling is an awesome cardio workout and an exercise I fully support, the recumbent stationery cycle is just a waste of time.

Why, you ask? Take a look at pretty much everyone using one in the local gym. What’s working? Legs. And nothing else. And barely even legs usually. There they sit, looking all comfy and reclined, reading a magazine.

Since when is exercise supposed to be about getting ‘comfy’? And, just like the elliptical, if you’re working so LITTLE that you can read a magazine, you just aren’t working hard enough. Recumbent cycles are awesome for allowing you to take your head OUT of the game, which is not beneficial to getting a challenging and effective workout done.

If you HAVE to be on a stationary version of a bike at least get on the upright one and give your upper body something to do (like balance…it’s not much but at least it’s something).

But better yet, get on a real bike where you have to balance and use your core and upper body as you cycle around corners, up hills and basically just stay upright.

7) ThighMaster.

Wow, I hope this one is obvious. If not, see point #8

8) Hip adductor / abductor machine.

If you’re not sure what this is, and you’re a guy I’m not surprised. Gym owners don’t insult YOUR intelligence with this one. If you’re a woman then this is the machine you’ll find in the “Ladies Area” of most gyms. It’s designed to work hips and inner / outer thighs, exclusively.

It doesn’t matter if you’re using the standing version or the sitting version, these machines are a waste of time and aren’t doing what you might think they’re doing.

First of all, why do only Ladies need this?

Second of all, why does ANYONE actually need this?

These machines do NOT burn fat off your thighs. This machine will NOT spot reduce your thighs or hips. As a matter of fact, “Spot Reduction” is a myth.

This machine may, however, help you build muscle on your thighs. But it’s not a very effective way to do it, for anyone looking to achieve that end result. Squats, lunges and other free-weight leg work will achieve that a lot faster than this machine will.

So, if you’re not burning fat off your hips and thighs but you ARE building muscle, all you’re doing is making your thighs and hips bigger.

More on spot reduction in point #10.

9) Any ab cruncher machine, contraption, or ‘gizmo’ like the ab cradle.

At all cost, avoid ‘abdominal spot reducer’ gizmos. Why? Because they don’t work your abs effectively, and they promise something that’s not possible. They’re promising to spot reduce fat from your abdominal area.

And covered in point #8, the ability to spot reduce fat in certain parts of your body just isn’t possible.

Okay, now see point #10.

10) Any piece of equipment that claims it will ‘spot reduce’ any particular area of the body.

If you want to lose fat in your abs, your thighs, your arms, your chest, or any other area of your body, you MUST lose fat overall.

Fat will not come off in one area only just because you’re working that one area.

By working the muscle under the fat you’re making the muscle bigger, but you aren’t burning that fat.

It’s true what they say: you can’t out-train a bad diet.

So watch your caloric intake and workout with fat burning exercises that get your heart rate up and get you breathing hard (also known as ‘cardio’ workouts) to burn more calories … and THAT’S when the fat will start to melt off.

So get on a fat burning exercise program, lose fat all over your body and watch that set of abdominals, thighs, arms, chest or whatever start to look more and more ripped as the fat comes off everywhere.

Bonus Exercise to Avoid:

Any piece of equipment that you’ll likely buy from a late night infomercial that promises to give you a ripped body without doing any actual work.

Do you really think sitting on your butt in a some kind of swiveling chair or connecting up to a bunch of electrodes is really doing anything to get you fit?

Ignore those contraptions you see during your late night TV viewing and save your dollars.

As much as these infomercials promise getting in shape can be done without actually working at it, that’s just not true.

So, if you haven’t already, get comfortable with the idea of working hard to get fit and just go do it.

As you may have noticed, lot of these ineffective exercises require machines that you find in a gym. So, if you decide to get your sweat on at a gym, avoid the machines and hit the free weights exclusively.

Working out on machines in general isn’t nearly as effective as working out properly with good form on free weights like dumbbells, a barbell or the cable apparatus. Free weights promote more stability and more muscle activity and don’t limit your range of motion like the machines do.

But you really don’t absolutely have to go to a gym to get a good and effective workout, even if you don’t have enough space for a designated workout room. With a simple set of adjustable dumbbells and a couple of fitness bands you can set yourself up to get a great workout at home even in a tiny space and avoid costly memberships, inconvenient commutes and time-wasting waits for shared equipment.

There’s no good reason to waste your time on these ineffective exercises, so make these simple substitutions and get to your goals faster.

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Looking for a home workout you can do in a small space that can get you in great shape in a hurry? Then look no further than “Hot at Home”. It’s the Transformation Solution for People Who Hate The Gym. More information here: “Hot at Home

Monday, May 27, 2013

The Ultimate Bodyweight Workout

By Craig Ballantyne, CTT
Certified Turbulence Trainer

One of the most common questions I get asked is something like "If you could only do 5 exercises....?" or "if you could only use one piece of equipment....?"

I have to admit, I think these questions are silly, because when would I ever have those limits placed upon me?

Well, I guess there is one answer...a hotel room. Recently, stuck in a hotel with a terrible gym, all I could do was bodyweight circuits in my room.

Fortunately, because of my insane knowledge of bodyweight training, I was able to create an incredible workout.

To learn more, check out these bodyweight circuits

So let me tell you a secret previously known by only a few of the world's best personal trainers...

Your body is actually the BEST piece of home gym "workout equipment" in the world for helping you GAIN muscle and BURN fat without spending tons of money.

Countless soldiers, secret service men, professional bodyguards, gymnasts, martial artists, dancers, and athletes have long relied on bodyweight training secrets to build a lean, long, sexy look.

And here's something NO fitness magazine will ever admit. You know those cover models they put on their magazines? The ones with the six pack abs and flat stomachs and no belly fat?

I've met dozens of those fitness models, and only a small percentage even workout with weights

Most of them are simply athletic and just like to "bang out" a few quick bodyweight workouts per week.

Hardly any mainstream fitness model spends hours in the gym, even though that's what the magazines tell you month after month.

It's a complex conspiracy to keep you coming back for long commercial gym workouts, even though their superstar cover models don't even use those programs.

Men and women with the long, lean bodies you want don't use workout machines or even spend much time in commercial gyms at all...

...they are warriors, athletes, beach-body surfers, climbers, and all types of other people who prefer bodyweight exercise and fun activities over boring machine workouts.

The cover models are the people you see cranking out workouts at the playground or in the park with little more than their own bodyweight for resistance.

Bodyweight exercise is for people who want a life, not a life sentence of 2-hour long commercial gym workouts

Cover models - like professional surfer Laird Hamilton, for example - would much rather be out on the beach enjoying their life than "strutting their stuff" in the cardio area of an empty gym on a Saturday morning.

And so would I.

That's why you could crank out a bodyweight workout three times per week rather than spending another 60 to 90 minutes in the gym lifting weights.

With bodyweight workouts, you'll save time (they are shorter and don't require you to drive to the gym and back), so you can enjoy more time outside - heck, you can even do most of these workouts in the park.

You'll be shocked when you compare the Turbulence Training Bodyweight Cardio workouts against traditional cardio machines because your results will show...

Bodyweight Cardio workouts are more effective for total body conditioning and fat burning

Studies even show that traditional long, slow cardio workouts don't even work while circuit training can help men and women gain muscle and burn fat at the same time - even if they are over 60 years old.

Bodyweight workouts are for men and women who want to build sex appeal while improving their health, fitness, mobility, and vitality.

And bodyweight exercises are for anyone who wants faster results and the ability to workout at home, rather than being forced into a 2-hour round trip to the gym.

If you want to burn belly fat and sculpt your body like a cover model - while just saying NO to long, boring cardio and extreme overuse bodybuilding workouts -you'll love the Turbulence Training bodyweight workouts.

Check it out : Bodyweight Cardio

We know that interval training works better than steady state training for fat loss. I'm convinced that metabolic circuits like these are the next evolution in interval training.

Take a look:  Bodyweight Cardio

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Are You In Your Comfort Zone?

Are You In Your Comfort Zone? Or a Combat Zone?
by Jackie Burgmann, author of “Hot at Home” – The Transformation Solution for People Who Hate The Gym

When you head to your usual workout are you doing the right thing for yourself? Or are you just wasting time doing the same old thing over and over?

Let me ask you this: is the same old thing still working for you? Still seeing results? Or do you feel like you might be stagnating, stuck on a plateau… or in a rut because it’s what you know and you don’t know anything else?

Well, I’m here to tell you that if you are stuck in a comfort zone and don’t do something to get yourself out of it NOW you’re going to be exactly where you are for as long as you stay in this comfort zone you’ve got yourself surrounded by.

Do you still want to be where you are a year from now? Because that’s what you’re setting yourself up for if you don’t get some variety… and soon!

Listen, your body is smart. It knows how to adapt to the pressures you’re imposing upon it. If you don’t give your muscles something new to do, something to surprise them and make them work HARDER than they’re used to, they have NO REASON to change. They’ve adapted to what you’re doing and they’re ready for you this time and EVERY time.

If you don’t ‘feel’ like you got in some hard work, chances are you didn’t. Sure, psychologically you might feel like you got a good workout but your muscles won’t. They were just out for another stroll in the park. The same old same old. Yawn. Boring. Nothing new here. Your muscles can practically sleepwalk through your routines if you’ve been doing them too long.

Real advancement with weight training only comes when you do a little ‘damage’ to your muscles. This is how they get stronger and bigger. And to damage them you must work them hard enough to cause microscopic tears in the muscle fibers. And, then after you’re finished working out and your muscles get to do some serious resting they will repair themselves to prepare for the next onslaught of punishment they assume to be coming at them again soon (and they should be correct in that assumption, by the way).

That sore feeling you get after a hard workout is called “DOMS” and it stands for ‘Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness’ and it’s a GOOD thing. That means your muscles are repairing the damage, growing and getting stronger and fitter. And that’s what you want, right?

So, get some variety in your workout routines and watch how fast you fly off of that plateau. If you are always doing the same isolation moves like bicep curls and tricep kickbacks, change it up with some full body compound moves.

Or superset your exercises.

Or increase the weights you’ve been lifting. Seriously, how long have you been hefting the exact same weights? Have you even TRIED to get heavier with it in the past few months?

And, you should change up your entire routine at least once every six to eight weeks to keep your body from adapting to anything too quickly.

Remember to keep your body guessing. Your body should feel like it just walked out of a Combat Zone when you’re finished working out. Not yet another Comfort Zone.

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Hate the gym? Want to get fit at home? Check out “Hot at Home“, Jackie’s Transformation Solution for People Who Hate The Gym. Learn how she lost 40lbs of unwanted flab in the privacy of her own home, and how what she discovered can work for you, too.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Six Pack Sins (Free Report)

Six mistakes you need to correct to get a lean body and toned abs.

Six Pack Sins < < < Click Here!

Intensify Your Workouts

A Devilish Way To Intensify Your Workouts
by Jackie Burgmann, author of “Hot at Home” – The Transformation Solution for People Who Hate The Gym

Need a way to kick your workouts up a notch?

Maybe your workouts are starting to feel stagnant or stale?

Or you’ve hit a plateau?

Or, you’re just getting plain old BORED?

Wait! All of the above, perhaps?

Here’s a devilish way to give your workouts a kick in the pants and get them feeling challenging again.

Find yourself a workout partner. That’s all there is to it.

But hold on one second … I don’t mean just ANY workout partner.

A GOOD workout partner needs to be a certain ‘kind’ of person.

So, you need to find the workout partner from Hell (imagine evil laughter here).

Sign up to work out with the Devil … or at least find the next closest thing you can to the Devil.

There are many devilish types of people that would make great workout partners and not let you down in your quest for a hard, effective workout.

You know that one girl or guy you see at the gym every single time you’re there that has the insanely toned, ripped body?

They got that way somehow and I’ll bet they’re annoying about it. You want to hear all about how to get ripped and then some? I’m sure they’d be happy to tell you all the ways they beat themselves up to get that way.

It’s pretty likely they’ll be a workout partner from Hell.

I’d also bet they don’t put up with whiners, excuse makers or any of that other self-sabotaging behavior. You can bet they’ll be extremely prompt for your 6am workout and be banging down your door if you’re not waiting out front ready to go.

I’d even bet that there will be no sympathy from your workout partner if you try to bail because of something minor like a late night out (or up with a sick kid) or a papercut on your finger.

Trust me, you don’t want to let THAT kind of workout partner down… or waiting!

Partner up with him or her and benefit from their intensity (or should I say “insanity”?).

And welcome to Hell.

Hire yourself a Personal Trainer.

And not just any Personal Trainer. Especially not that Personal Trainer that will be soft on you and give you the sympathy eyes if you complain about something being too heavy.

Get yourself a Personal Trainer that used to be in the Army … better still, get one that used to be in the Marines.

Do you see where I’m going with this one?

They won’t be easy on themselves and they sure as Hell won’t be easy on you. He or she will be an excellent Training Partner from Hell.

Check!

Since we’re talking about the Armed Forces now, how about finding a whole new collection of like-minded hard-core fitness goers by attending some fitness Boot Camp classes?

They’re called “Boot Camps” for a reason you know.

They’ll kick your butt hard. And when it’s over you’ll thank them for it (and ask for more). Well, if you’re serious about getting in great shape you will.

You’ll walk (or crawl) away from those boot camps feeling like you just walked out of Hell.

And you might even wind up with a whole new list of people willing to be your Hellacious workout partners.

So, kick up the intensity in your workout by finding your own workout partner from Hell.

It’s a Devilishly good idea!

Byline:
Get more great ideas about how to increase the intensity in your fitness routines, plus get over 40 weeks of intense and effective fat-burning workouts you can do in the privacy of your own home with “Hot at Home“. It’s the Transformation Solution for People Who Hate The Gym.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Fit Yummy Mummy to Be Sale ENDS Tonight

Just a friendly reminder to get “FYM to Be” before the price goes up tonight. Save HERE.

Pregnancy definitely changes things when it comes to your workouts. You must expect to deal with things like:

· Changing shape and gaining weight – your body is constantly changing which affects your balance and coordination

· Morning sickness – it’s hard to feel like working out when you feel like crap

· Running to the bathroom constantly

· Self-Image & Self-Confidence Issues – it’s hard to get motivated when you just feel so “not yourself”

· Fatigue…LOTS of fatigue – DEEP fatigue – there are going to be days where getting out of bed is going to be enough work… you can forget about trying to do a traditional workout when that happens!

Your pregnancy workouts MUST account for all of these changes your body is going through.

‘Fit Yummy Mummy To Be’ Is Designed With All These Factors In Mind Giving You The Pregnancy Workout Blueprint So You Can Get Started With Confidence Today!

Get it and save time & money HERE

To Your Health and Fitness,

Arthur M.

P.S. – The Fit Yummy Mummy to Be SALE ENDS TONIGHT. SAVE $30 HERE!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Your Pregnancy Workout Blueprint

I’ve been talking a lot about this new pregnancy-training program all week. It’s really impressive!

Here’s the breakdown of what Fit Yummy Mummy to Be includes:

  · Specialized Follow-Along Strength Training Workout Videos for Your 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Trimesters

- Each workout video has a “Learn It” segment that breaks down how to properly perform each exercise so you know the exact form to use along with modifications.

- During the “Do It” video segments we will workout together through every minute and every repetition. I give you cues, breathing tips and the motivation you need in order to guide you through an effective strength based workout plan.

  · Level 1 & Level 2 Workouts to Accommodate For Your Personal Fitness and Energy Levels

  · Workouts Range From 5 – 20 Minutes So You Always Have An Go-To Option Available

  · Access 12 Full Body Workouts in All, 4 per Trimester Giving You Plenty Of Flexibility Throughout Your Entire Pregnancy

  · Downloadable Success Guide Outlining Must Have Workout Guidelines along with Printable Workout Logs Along with   Additional Fit Pregnancy Tips & Strategies

Best of all, these workouts are designed to be performed in the comfort of your own home, using minimal exercise equipment (all you need are a couple dumbbells, a band, yoga mat, stability ball, and bench or step).

There’s no need to trek to your local gym, especially as you get further along. The workouts are designed to be quick and efficient ranging from 5 – 20 minutes each. You can complete a workout in less time than it would take you to “get yourself together” and go to the gym!

Holly also has some great bonuses that she’s giving away when you purchase this week including:

1. A Special Delivery ‘Prep Program’ to make labor and delivery smoother and more comfortable

2. Her Personal Pregnancy Video Diary where she shares her personal reflections and strategies throughout her pregnancy

3. Holly’s 6-week Postpartum Bounce-Back Workout Plan to get your pre-baby body back in no-time!

Being pregnant is one of the most blessed times of a woman’s life. It doesn’t have to come with massive amounts of unwanted weight gain, discomfort, and self-image issues. Join Holly today and become a Fit Yummy Mummy To Be  < < < Click here to get started

To Your Health and Fitness,

Arthur M.

P.S. – The Fit Yummy Mummy to Be SALE ENDS TOMORROW. SAVE 30% HERE!

5 Signs You're UNDERTRAINING?!

Did you know there is a good chance you are suffering from "undertraining syndrome" and it's preventing you from achieving your ultimate body?

While undertraining is not a real and dangerous condition, it can deflate your motivation and self-esteem.  My years of experience has convinced me it's negatively affecting people much more frequently than "overtraining" ever has.

Undertraining occurs mostly when people lack the following:

* Consistency - do you miss workouts?
* Intensity - how close do you work to your 1RM ?
* Density - are you doing more work each month?
* Frequency - have you been using the same split for years?
* Progression - how much different do you look than last year?

Every day Vince Del Monte is asked to analyze people’s programs, and he was shocked to learn that many of them have been doing the same exact reps, sets and weights for months without changing.  There is no change in their body either. Shocking... (sarcasm)

So to solve this "undertraining syndrome" problem Vince put together an article on how to conquer complacency, avoid undertraining syndrome and destroy plateaus by focusing on sarcoplasmic and myofibril gains, simultaneously.

If you suspect you're undertraining, you're going to love this:

==> Can You Handle This Muscle-Building Challenge?

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Pregnancy Workouts

A lot of expecting moms have dozens of questions and concerns about exercising while pregnant.

Will being pregnant negatively impact my workouts?

How will I know what changes I need to make to my exercise routine?

I’m really nervous about keeping my baby safe when I workout.

“Don’t lift anything over 10 lbs” – “Don’t lie on your Back” – “Don’t do Squats” …so what CAN I do?

What if I end up on bed-rest by doing something wrong?

I do not want to lose my body…back fat, arm pit fat, bigger hips…what if ‘blow up like a balloon?’

Sound familiar? Have you and/or a pregnant friend had this conversation?

If so, I want to encourage you to check out a NEW pregnancy training program by busy moms fat loss expert Holly Rigsby.

Holly created and filmed a follow-along workout program WHILE she was pregnant! This program isn’t just theory or a book with pictures. This is actually a follow-along video series where you workout side-by-side through all 3 trimesters with Holly!!

Check out Fit Yummy Mummy to Be < < <  Right HERE

You’ll see Holly is a real person just like you and me. She shares her pregnancy workouts and even her pregnancy video diary with us in this new pregnancy-training program. It really is something special.

Please pass this along to anyone you know who’s expecting or planning to get pregnant soon…

TO Your Health and Fitness

Arthur M.

P.S. – Fit Yummy Mummy to Be is a NEW program and it’s ON SALE THIS WEEK. Get all the details on this pregnancy-training program < < < HERE

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

New Training Program for EXPECTING Moms

Being pregnant doesn’t mean you have to stop working out and lose your fit body as long as you follow these pregnancy training protocols – CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO

There are a lot of programs out there that focus on getting your pre-baby body BACK, but up until now there hasn’t been too many good resources (good enough for me to endorse) that focus on training and staying in great shape WHILE you’re pregnant.

That’s why I’m encouraging every expecting mom I know to check out the NEW Pregnancy Training Program and learn the secrets to staying in shape and looking & feeling great throughout your pregnancy…AND discover how to get your pre-baby body back in no-time!

CLICK HERE FOR MORE INFO

Saturday, May 18, 2013

A great 10k training program

I know far too many runners who want to run a 10k - which is great - but they aren't able to do so successfully because they simply do not have a plan.

They just lace up their shoes, hit the pavement (or treadmill), and run.

Not a very effective training plan if you ask me. Wouldn't you agree?

But... are you one of these runners? The type of runner who gives your all but still falls a little bit short?

Or, are you lost when it comes to training for a 10k? It's OK if you are. It's definitely a bit different from running a 5k. And, unless you are an expert, how are you supposed to know what to do, right?

How on earth are you supposed to know when to run intervals, longer runs, tempo runs, etc...?

It's a complex world and a complex event to train for. But it doesn't have to be.

I recently started using a great 10k program that gives you everything you need - the coaching, the plans, the workouts, and the motivation!

And I thought I would share it with you as well.

http://bit.ly/jZQshi <--------------Click here.

Arthur M.

P.S. If you want true peace of mind while running your first or your fastest 10k ever, then you need to check this out. It's as easy as pressing play and going for your run!

http://bit.ly/jZQshi <--------------Click here.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Is Your Body REJECTING Fish Oil Making It Useless? (Video)

Is Your Body REJECTING Fish Oil Making It Useless? (Video)

5 WORST protein bar ingredients... Do YOUR bars have these?

Protein bars...so convenient and hold the promise of being healthy, easy and full of muscle-building protein.

But have you ever taken a few minutes to look at what's actually IN them!

I think you're going to be in for a shock when you read the TRUTH about the ingredients in some of the most popular protein bars on the market right now.

Let's get right to it:...

1 - Soy Protein Isolate (SPI)
This is, unfortunately, one of the most prevalent protein sources you'll find in protein bars, especially those marketed to women. This marketing would have you believe that soy is an excellent protein source for women because of the isoflavones found in it. In reality, studies have indicated that these soy isoflavones can actually be TOXIC because of how the soy is processed (fermented soy products such as tofu are fine, just fyi).

In addition, SPI was actually considered a WASTE product in soy processing until recently, when it was discovered that money could be made by passing it off as a protein source. It's cheap and definitely NOT a high-quality protein. It should be avoided.

And the final nail in the soy coffin: GMO. A very high percentage of the soy grown in the United States is from genetically modified organisms (GMO). They don't currently have to be labeled as such but if you're buying any sort of processed food, chances are very good you're getting a GMO-sourced product.

2 - High Fructose Corn Syrup
This is an easy one to figure out...the adverse health effects of it are well documented (contrary to what the commercials from the Corn Growers Association claim - those are truly among the most annoying commercials in existence, trying to make people who question corn syrup look stupid). It's one of the WORST things you can eat and yet there are still bars that use it as a primary ingredient.

3 - Fractionated Palm Kernel Oil
Palm kernel oil is a cheap, unhealthy fat. Unlike plain palm oil, palm kernel oil can't be obtained organically. Instead, the oil must be extracted from the pit with a gasoline-like hydrocarbon solvent. The fractioned form is the most processed...if you see that in the ingredients, you should definitely avoid it.

4 - Sugar Alcohols
This includes ingredients like Maltitol Syrup, Xylitol, Sorbitol, Lactitol, Mannitol, and Erythritol. Sugar alcohols are included in bars for sweetness...especially in bars that are "carb controlled". Sugar alcohols don't impact blood sugar as much as regular sugar because they're not well absorbed in the digestive tract...and when things aren't well absorbed in the digestive tract, things happen (if you know what I mean).

In small amounts, sugar alcohols aren't a big problem, but if you start getting into the double digits of grams of sugar alcohol (and many low-carb bars are in the 20 gram range), THEN you can start to see unpleasant digestive issues.

5 - Artificial Sweeteners
I won't get into the whole debate about whether artificial sweeteners are bad for you or not and what they turn into in your body, etc. Personally, I'm of the mindset that if it's created by science, chances are good your body won't recognize it and won't be able to metabolize it into something actually good for you. Therefore, I try and stay away from artificial sweeteners as much as I possibly can. I find the actual natural flavor of real food to be pretty good :).

In Summary...
Those are the top 5 worst protein bar ingredients...and you will actually find bars that contain ALL of these ingredients in them.

The main problem I have with the vast majority of protein bars today is that at their most base level, they're deceptive. The bars are put forward as convenient, healthy alternatives to food for "on the go" people. Yet when you take a close look at the ingredients, they're actually WORSE for you than most candy bars.

Obviously money is the biggest factor...companies that use high-quality ingredients in their bars have to charge more for them in order to stay in business. Hence the brick-like slop sold in bar form that you'll find in the grocery store aisles today.

A New Breed of Protein Bar...Raw and Natural
Yep, that's right!  A protein bar made from raw, natural ingredients that's actually GOOD for you.  You can eat them when you're running around, on the go.  They're convenient and healthy.

They taste EXTREMELY good and the quality of the ingredients is outstanding. For example, here's what you'll find in the Raspberry Hazelnut bars: Organic dates, pea protein, hemp protein, rice protein, almond butter, hazelnuts, coconut nectar, dried raspberries, raw cacao, coconut oil, stevia, water.

GREAT ingredients...GREAT taste...

Click here to order your bars now...

To Your Health and Fitness,

Arthur M.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

10 Reasons Why You Need Interval Cardio Resistance Training (ICRT)

Marines Use these ICRT Workouts

There’s a reason Marines are the most fit people in the world. They not only have very low body fat, but they are stronger and better conditioned. Now you can train just like them.

These ICRT workouts will get you ripped like a Marine <== Offer expires TONIGHT

But if you think you need more of a reason to finally get in the best shape of your life, I’ve got 10 for you…

1. Interval Cardio Resistance Training (ICRT) involves workouts from the future. They are based on scientifically proven methods for gaining lean, athletic muscle, and shredding fat in a faster, more consistent rate than long, boring cardio.  It’s also the EXACT workouts that Marines have used to get in amazing shape in just weeks.

2. ICRT is insanely convenient. Maybe even too convenient if there could be such a thing. 15 minutes isn't a whole lot of time, but you will see as soon as you begin how productive you can be with this powerful interval and resistance superset method of training.

3. ICRT workouts are abundant. You NEVER repeat workouts ambiguously, only strategically for maximal results in the minimum amount of time possible.

Use this system to get ripped and never get bored <== 57% off expires tonight

4. ICRT can be modified for anyone to participate. Although Jason designed the workouts for men, some of his most successful clients have been women.

5. ICRT is cutting edge. There is NO equipment involved in this system, and the workouts can be completed in a hotel room!

6. ICRT makes you work. Let's face it.. to get real results, you must "put out." But on the same coin, it is important to feel good about the feeling workouts bring. ICRT accomplishes that without the lethargic feeling you get from long 60-minute workouts.

7. ICRT is NOT BORING. Traditional Cardio IS. Your body responds to boredom by not improving. ICRT will improve your body and your conditioning.

8. ICRT focuses on NOT injuring by way of proven exercises inspired by top authorities in the fitness world.

9. ICRT allows for abundant flexibility. Jason created this system with the busy guy in my mind. I mean, VERY busy. The convenience of the program speaks for itself.

10. ICRT is guaranteed to give you results! Can you guarantee ICRT you will be loyal? If so, you will be very happy with your transformation.

After all, the Marines are definitely loyal, and you already know the shape they are in. You can be, too.

Get in the best shape of your life here <== Offer expires at midnight

To Your Health and Fitness,

Arthur M.

P.S. Jason is sharing the EXACT system he’s used with hundreds of US Marines to get in amazing shape by using the powerful interval and strength superset system without any equipment.

If his system works for Marines, imagine what it could do for you.

Grab Jason’s secrets here and eliminate the excuses <== Man up

 

10 Intense strength/interval workouts you MUST do

You’ve already seen how my friend Jason Klein gets Marines in top shape using his efficient ICRT approach. This powerful interval and strength superset approach will burn more fat and put on lean muscle, all while improving your conditioning in just 15 minutes.

But, the truth is that these are tough workouts (physically AND mentally). Here are the BEST 10 ICRT workouts in his program. Grab his system that has gotten US Marines shredded in just 6 weeks right here:

Powerful 15-Minute ICRT workouts <== Price DOUBLES tonight

1. Master: Known for it's deceivingly delayed glute burn, this workout will not only spike metabolism and after burn, but also work on defining key muscle groups that are otherwise tough to hit.

2. Meltdown: The glorious meltdown is known for the X-jump. Not to be mistaken with heavy "ground n' pound" jumping, this ICRT workout will give any go getter a run for their money!

3. Shred: The combo #5 of the Lean Body Revolution program. Shred intertwines a generous mixture of both quad, glute, and core work that will keep things very, interesting ;).

4. Power-max: I won't lie: Power-max is known for giving a great core and lower leg pump. Don’t be surprised if you are sore the next day after this one.

5. Evolv: One of my favorites. Plenty of chest, tricep, and just the right amount of cardio-resistance for a perfect adrenaline rush

6. Glute Finder: This is truly a great workout. It may sound either comical, or intimidating, or both... either way, you won't be disappointed.

7. Prone core: A core workout from the future. No hunching the back, yet way more beneficial for six pack abs and steel core. 

Get strong Marine Corp abs here <== 57% Off Expires Tonight

8. Spidy: A good all around workout! Focuses on range of motion and challenging multiple muscle groups for greater gains in lean, athletic muscle.

9. Crucible: Known for the narrow squat jumps, crucible will give you just as much mental challenge as core challenge! This truly is one of the secret workouts that can break mental barriers.

10. Graduation: Not just because of the name, but because it will graduate your fitness to the next level!

Get the system and train just like a Marine using the secrets that Jason uses when he trains the best men in the world.

Get all the Lean Body Workouts for 57% OFF <== Expires in a few hours!

To Your Health and Fitness,

Arthur M.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

The Proof of Lean Athletic Muscle (case study)

I recently explained the case study below to a few friends. Like most people, my friends had been stuck on the old-school mindset of training for lean athletic muscle. This is basically the understanding that one has to workout for at least one hour to see true and permanent results.

Where did the one-hour thing come from anyway?

Well anyways, let me explain how it is scientifically proven that shorter, “sharper” workouts give us exponentially greater results when it comes to lean, athletic muscle.

The case study below proves that a similar method of training produces way better results, in way less time!

Now onto the case study:

A study completed by European Journal of Applied Physiology concluded that the effects of high intensity (short duration) proved more effective over lower intensity (long duration) exercise.

High intensity (short term) resistance training resulted in significant changes in percent of lean muscle gained, fat decreased, even increased strength. On the other hand, lower intensity suffered, and the group that participated in long duration and lower intensity workouts experienced plateaus.

So how long were these higher intensity, time effective workouts?

As specific as 30 minutes (or less).

You will probably want to keep reading if you’re interested in achieving results like these, in even less time! Yes, In LESS Time!

There is a new method that is currently pushing this scientifically backed form of strength training even FURTHER.

I wouldn’t be surprised if you’ve heard about my friend, Jason Klein and his breakthrough 15 Minute Body™ system for busy guys. After all, he’s trained hundreds of US Marines.

CLICK HERE==>Lean Body Revolution, $27 Until Midnight Tomorrow<====CLICK HERE

It causes the most efficient affect for lean muscle and fat loss, in the least amount of time possible. It has to work because Jason was relied on to help these Marines get more athletic, put on lean muscle and lose fat at the same time.

Jason’s 15 Minute Body method uses a new technique called Interval Cardio-Resistance Training™ (ICRT ™).

Jason was the go-to expert when it came to getting US Marines in amazing shape in the least amount of time possible. These marines had to lose fat to move faster, become more athletic and they had to DOUBLE their conditioning all at the same time.

So Jason used this NEW innovative technique of super-setting strength and interval work. Trust me, it’s not easy. But using this powerful combination can get you MORE lean, athletic muscle, shed stubborn belly fat and double your conditioning in under six weeks.

CLICK HERE==>Lean Body Revolution, $27 Until Midnight Thursday <====CLICK HERE

Now if you’re hesitant, I can understand. That’s why I asked Jason for a sample workout plan. Here it is. Now you can train just like a Marine:

Flexion3

Superset Resistance and Cardio, and complete for time:

*All sets are 25 Repetitions:

1. Air Squats

2. Full Jacks

3. Iso-Ab Pushup

4. Full Jacks

5. Cross Iso-Climber, Right

6. Full-Jacks

7. Cross Iso-Climber, Left

8. Full Jacks

9. Walking Prone Iso-ab

10. Full Jacks

11. Wall Sit with Alt. Leg Extensions

12. Full Jacks

Then run on over and pick up 35 never seen before 15 Minute Body™ Workouts

OFFER EXPIRES TOMORROW >>>> Get Marine Fit here (only $27)

To Your Health and Fitness,

Arthur M.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Worst Training for Runners

Secret Reason Why Running is the Worst Training for Runners

By Heather Ebright - Certified Pilates Instructor and Avid Runner

I know what you’re thinking-- I’m a runner, so the only training I need is more running.

This is the by far the most widely believed myth in the running community. Although it is true that a lot of training time needs to be dedicated to running, you must also take into consideration the viability and efficiency of your running. (Keep reading to find out how you can greatly improve your running efficiency and prevent and treat knee pain and injury!)

But strength training will make me bulky and slow, right?

Wrong again! The additional strength and power gained from additional muscle mass far outweighs the stress of carrying a few extra pounds.  The right strengthening techniques set you up for greater running success by ensuring the proper alignment as you land each step.  The right type of strength training will change the way your body moves as well as how it looks - you’ll see a leaner build without any bulking up. 

Running speed is a product of stride length and frequency. In other words, the length of your step times the number of steps your make equals your speed. (Who knew the math was so simple?) Stride length is a function of strength, power, and stability, and can only be increased by increasing those factors. (If you want to learn the best way to increase power and stability, while curing pain and injury, stay with me and I’ll share my secrets to improving running performance!)

So you’re telling me I need to do more leg lifts and IT Band stretches?

Nope! I’m going to let you in on a little known fact-- While strengthening and stretching the legs are beneficial to any athlete, the BEST way to increase stability and power is through core strength training.

That’s right-- you need to train your core muscles if you want to run faster, farther, and without the risk of pain or injury. The core muscles of the body function as “central command” during all movement, especially running. Your core controls stride frequency and the force production of the lower body (stride length), regulating your running efficiency. Core muscles are also integral to keeping your stride aligned to a neutral position, which is crucial to preventing and curing the three most common running injuries-- IT Band Syndrome, Patellofemoral Pain (commonly known as “Runners Knee”), and shin splints.  It’s worth noting that IT Band stretches, anti-inflammatory medications, and massages will only offer temporary relief.

So you’re saying that a weak core and improper alignment are to blame for my knee pain and my slow running times? So all I have to do is strengthen my core and straighten my stride? Then I’ll cure my running injuries and increase my speed and distance?

Now you’re catching on! It’s as simple as following my unique training program specifically designed to help identify your muscular imbalances and misalignment in your stride, AND help you target core muscle groups in your training sessions.

I’ve trained runners and athletes to increase their speed and running efficiency and build solid core strength to protect their joints from injury and pain.  I can teach you also these special techniques for less than the cost of a visit to the doctor or physical therapist. Check out my book, Pilates 4 Runners, to learn how YOU can improve your speed and cure pain and injury with a just a few simple clinically-proven exercises.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Facts about IT Band Syndrome that your doctor or therapist probably didn't tell you about

What Your Doctor Didn’t Tell You About Your IT Band Syndrome

By Heather Ebright - Certified Pilates Instructor and Avid Runner

Are you an athlete recently diagnosed with IT Band Syndrome? Or are you experiencing knee pain possibly related to IT Band Syndrome?  Maybe you're in marathon training mode and ramping up miles according to your training schedule -- and starting to feel a weird niggly knee pain that runs along the outside of your knee to your hips.  Maybe you're already feeling the pain and praying it doesn't develop into anything more so you can continue with your marathon training.

If so, there are important facts about IT Band syndrome that your doctor or therapist probably didn't tell you about.

If your knee injury pain is lateral (on the outside edge of your knee for those of you who didn’t go to med school), then you are likely suffering from one of the most common knee complaints - iliotibial band syndrome, or ITBS. Iliotibial band syndrome is primarily known as a running injury, but it is also responsible for about 1 in every 25 injuries in athletes engaged in other forms of vigorous training or sports that involve repeated bending of the knee.

Despite what you may already know about ITBS and IT Band pain, you may be surprised to learn that researchers have proven that the 3 most common running injuries, which include IT Band Syndrome, Patella Pain, and Stress Fractures (or shin splints in its milder form), are all caused by a common inability to maintain stability during running.

Studies show that injured runners are unable to maintain proper straight up-and-down leg alignment while running, as opposed to healthy runners who maintain this alignment in every step. This lack of alignment causes increased burden on the joint and causes injury and pain.

Traditionally, treatment of ITBS has focused on IT Band stretches and rest. Stretching and rest play somewhat of a role in treatment - don’t run when you’re acutely inflamed and in pain.  Resting and stretching is acceptable for a short period of time - but these are NOT the solution to recovery and running pain-free.  Simply stretching and resting will never be enough and, in fact, may worsen the problem by just making you weaker while you’re resting and out of play. 

The most effective treatment to integrate into your healing regimen is strengthening so you can achieve the alignment that’s so critical to land each step properly and run pain-free.  You need to strengthen so that your hips and legs are strong enough to counter the incredible force involved in each step of running.  Consider that during an average one-mile run, your foot strikes the ground 1,000 times.  Further, the force of impact on the foot is 3 to 4 times your weight! 

It’s not surprising that when you’re landing during those 1,000 times, it’s very difficult for your legs to land with proper alignment.  With each step, you need to be strong enough to resist that force and remain aligned.  

For a sound long-term recovery, you must include core strength training.

Why do runners need core strength to run?

Core muscle strength is essential to running with good form to prevent and cure IT Band Syndrome.  Core muscle groups are responsible for proper joint alignment but unfortunately aren’t engaged when you run. In fact, it’s just the opposite: running’s limited range of motion tends to weaken all the core muscles surrounding your legs and hips.  Running’s over-emphasis on the one dimension of back-and-forth motion repeatedly occurs with no lateral side-to-side movement, so core muscles that work to stabilize your trunk get weaker literally with each step.  Compound that with the incredible force of each landing step.  It’s no surprise that your legs (mere limbs attached to an unstable trunk) become misaligned and start causing that IT band searing pain.

Consider this: during an average one-mile run, your foot strikes the ground 1,000 times.  So if you're training for a marathon, during one "peak" training run of 20-miles, your foot strikes the ground 20,000 times. And the the force of impact on the foot is 3 to 4 times your weight! So during one peak training run, your foot is striking the ground 20,000 times with the force of 3-4 times your body weight.  Your marathon training probably includes 3 of these peak 20-mile runs, so the numbers just continue to pile up.  For each 'landing', your core muscles have to be strong enough to land foot on the ground in a strong, aligned way -- or you're bound to feel the IT band knee pain that plagues so many of us.  Or maybe for you, it's in your hips or hamstrings.  Often pain in these muscles result because they're recruited to try and stabilize what your primary core muscles should be doing (and failing to do) instead.

Remember - it's actually not about leg muscle strength.  Your race training more than adequately covers that.  There's no doubt that you're overly repeating the front-and-back motion of running while the rest of your surrounding muscles which laterally stabilize -- and are SO important to safely landing each step -- continue to get weaker and atrophy.  This pattern is no surprise because by definition, running is a forward-and-back motion.  That's why injuries like the IT Band syndrome plague runners in a predictable way.  The only way to attack and stop the pain is to strengthen the core muscles that have to get back to the job of laterally stabilizing your trunk and legs for each foot landing of your runs.  It's as simple as that.  The core strengthening exercises in my program are simple as that too.  

To learn more about how you can improve core strength, run faster, and prevent and cure your IT Band Syndrome, check out my book, Pilates 4 Runners. In it, you’ll learn more about special, proven techniques to relieve knee pain and improve your performance, no matter what type of sport you enjoy.

Thursday, May 09, 2013

Struggling With Runners Knee?

Best Way to Stop Runners Knee Pain

By Heather Ebright - Certified Pilates Instructor and Avid Runner

Do you feel pain in your knee during or after your run or workout? Does the pain get worse when you walk down stairs or hills?

If so, you might have a case of Patellofemoral Pain Syndrome, commonly known as Runners Knee.  As the name suggests, Runners Knee is one of the most common injuries that runners experience, although it can affect any athlete that engages in repetitive knee bending, such as climbers, hikers, and cyclists. If you do any activity that requires bending of the knee, you might be at risk for developing Runners Knee or a more serious knee injury.  If you're in marathon training mode and ramping up miles according to your training schedule, you should be especially on guard for niggly knee pain.  Maybe you're already feeling some pain and praying it doesn't develop into anything more so you can continue with your marathon training.

For many years runner's knee was considered to be a direct result of softening of the cartilage of the kneecap, but current research proves that poor running mechanics are the real cause of Runners Knee.

When healthy, injury-free runners are in neutral alignment, the leg absorbs shock with every step. However, poor alignment results for MANY runners because the repeated back-and-forth, limited range of motion involved in running not surprisingly weakens all the core muscles surrounding your legs and hips.  Without the lateral side-to-side movement that would naturally strengthen your core, your trunk loses its natural stabilizer muscles and your core wears away little by little.  Weak core leads to unstable pelvis which inevitably leads to misalignment of your legs.  The alignment then causes imbalanced wear and tear on the knee joint, resulting in pain, injury, and possibly the end of your running career!

You might think that strengthening and stretching the legs would be the right approach to relieving knee pain. However the very TOP way to cure Runners Knee is to train the core muscle groups of the pelvis. The goal is to maintain good form during running, reduce loads to your joints, and eliminate any further breakdown of your tissue.

Other forms of therapy such as IT Band stretches and massage might also be helpful in relieving symptoms, but improving core strength and achieving proper alignment is the most effective and only sustainable way to relieve Runners Knee for good!

I’ve developed a unique training program for runners and any athlete who suffers from knee pain, a discrete set of proven core exercises that have been shown to accurately identify your muscle imbalances, prevent and cure pain, and -- then improve performance in runners.  Because of what is definitionally involved in running, ALL runners, regardless of performance and training level, are highly susceptible to repetitive motion and impact injuries.  ALL runners need to strengthen to be able to enjoy running.

Many runners with knee pain simply don’t prepare for the worst-case scenario when it comes to possible injury. By the time you’ve realized that you’re injured and in need of a new training routine, your performance has already suffered greatly and you’re in a lot of unnecessary pain. Don’t wait until you must stop running completely before seeking help! 

If you're in the process of training for a marathon, it's so important to accept and embrace a strengthening regimen as part of your training schedule.  Consider this: during an average one-mile run, your foot strikes the ground 1,000 times.  So during one "peak" training run of 20-miles, your foot strikes the ground 20,000 times. And the the force of impact on the foot is 3 to 4 times your weight! So during one peak training run, your foot is striking the ground 20,000 times with the force of 3-4 times your body weight.  Your marathon training probably includes 3 of these peak 20-mile runs, so the numbers just continue to pile up.  For each 'landing', your core muscles have to be strong enough to land foot on the ground in a strong, aligned way -- or you're bound to feel the knee, hip, or hamstring pain that plague so many of us. 

Remember - it's actually not about leg muscle strength.  Your training more than adequately covers that.  In fact, it's just the opposite: you're most likely overly repeating the front-and-back motion of running while the rest of your surrounding muscles which laterally stabilize -- and are SO important to safely landing each step -- just continue to atrophy.  This pattern is no surprise because by definition, running is a forward-and-back motion.  That's why the injuries that plague runners are common and predictable.

If you’re already injured and struggling with Runners Knee, take action and get to the root cause of your injury.  Don’t waste time and money dabbling on superficially alleviating the pain.  Instead, know that your injury can be cured by targeting the specific muscle deficiencies causing it -- and can be done so very quickly!

To find out about special strengthening techniques designed to get you running without pain and even faster, check out my book at http://scrnch.me/s2rmi. In it, you’ll find out how you can cure your Runners Knee and become a stronger, faster runner with just a few simple exercises involving no equipment or down-time -- just some honest work in strengthening yourself.

Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Running Pains During Marathon Training

Real Reason Why Running Pains Occur During Marathon Training

(And What Simple Things You Can Do to Stop Running Pain)

By Heather Ebright - Certified Pilates Instructor and Avid Runner

If you're one of the brave who are training for a marathon, the last thing you need is an injury to sideline you. Yet, over and over again, even the best runners among us get injured despite training by ramping up miles responsibly and in line with a training schedule.  It's been widely documented that 1 running injury occurs for every 100 hours of running.  In addition, runners on average miss about 5-10% of their workouts due to injury.  Injuries plague new runners and experienced runners alike. 

When you have a half marathon or marathon date set, it's never the right time to be injured.  Each day is accounted for in your training schedule and you can't afford to be out.  That's why it's so important to accept and embrace a core strengthening regimen as a fundamental part of your training schedule.

The reason why runners get repeatedly injured in predictable ways is driven by the fundamental basics of what running actually is. Consider this: during an average one-mile run, your foot strikes the ground 1,000 times.  So during one "peak" training run of 20-miles, your foot strikes the ground 20,000 times. And the force of impact on the foot is 3 to 4 times your weight!

The surprising clincher is the real reason why runners get injured is that injury prevention is not about leg muscle strength at all.  Sure, strong legs matter - but the truth is, your set traditional training more than adequately covers that.  In fact, it's just the opposite: the real strengthening needs to target all the muscles you're most likely ignoring while overly repeating the front-and-back motion of running.  In short, your surrounding muscles which laterally stabilize -- and are SO important to safely landing each step -- just continue to atrophy.  This pattern is no surprise because by definition, running is a forward-and-back motion.  That's why the injuries that plague runners are common and predictable.

We all know that running is great exercise, but its limited range of movement will create muscle imbalance. Without opposing movements, the body will compensate to avoid injury by working around the instability. Compensation puts stress on muscles, joints and the entire skeletal system.  If your body isn’t balanced, every step you take forces the muscles to work harder in compensation. Tight muscles get tighter and weak muscles get weaker.

What's wrong with tight muscles? They are brittle, hard, and inflexible.  Because muscles act as the body’s natural shock absorbers, ideally they should be soft and supple, with some give. Brittle muscles, on the other hand, cause the joints to rub and grind, making them vulnerable to tears and injuries. Short, tight muscles can't provide the necessary shock absorption you need for each step's landing. 

So what can you do to prevent injuries during your marathon training?

From the beginning, treat strengthening as a key requisite of your training. It's not an 'extra' or 'nice to have'. It's a fundamental part of each day's running.  Think: your strengthening allows you to run. Not vice versa.

To treat the inevitable muscle imbalances, you must stretch the shortened muscles and strengthen the weaker muscles. The calves, hamstrings, and low back muscles of runners typically are short, tight, and inflexible. These muscles need to be stretched. On the other hand, the opposing muscles -- the shins, quadriceps, and stomach muscles -- become lengthened and relatively weak. Think of the two groups as yin-and-yang: you must stretch the shortened, strengthen the lengthened.

Injuries to a runner’s body do not usually stem from one single traumatic event.  Even if you recall a "specific" day an injury happened, it's more likely the case that injury just finally triggered that day -- and all the runs leading up to it fully contributed to it.  Most injuries stem from overuse.  An overuse injury is caused by a gradual breakdown in the system. The most common types of injuries resulting from overuse are back pain, runner’s knee, shin splints, and Achilles tendonitis. The primary causes for overuse injuries are muscle imbalance, biomechanics, flexibility and postural alignment.

Pilates is an excellent way to prevent injuries and is gaining a tremendous amount of respect in the rehabilitation community. Physical therapists, chiropractors and medical doctors have included the Pilates method as part of the rehabilitative program for patients.

In your marathon training schedule, you'll probably ramp up to 40-mile weeks and have 3 peak runs of 20 miles each.  Recall that during during one peak training run, your foot is striking the ground 20,000 times with the force of 3-4 times your body weight.  When you have to include those 3 peak runs of 20 miles each, the numbers will just pile up.  For each 'landing', your core muscles have to be strong enough to land foot on the ground in a strong, aligned way.

Core strengthening through Pilates can get you there.  Check out my book, Pilates 4 Runners, to learn how you can safeguard your marathon training with a just a few simple clinically-proven exercises you can do at home. Like running, there's no equipment required!