Fitness and Exercise

Helpful tips and myth busting facts on Fitness and exercises. There are lots of ways to keep fit and what's right for you will totally depend on your daily routine and as women how busy you are. There is always an excuse not to exercise juggling home and family and it can be incredibly difficult to set aside time just for you. Here are a few exercises that will help you in your busy life



TIP 1. The best time to exercise is in the afternoon and or evening so if you're mornings are too busy then this is an ideal time to incorporate exercise into your daily routine



TIP 2.  Have a glass of milk after exercise it can help with aching muscles and speeds up recovery if you have done too much.



TIP 3.  Yes Ladies that window shopping trip is classified as exercise!

At a Glance

Walking

Swimming

Jogging

Bare foot running

HIT (High Intensive Interval Training)

Walking

One of the easiest things to incorporate into your daily routine, with a huge list of benefits for your health, walking can help you by: Lowering blood pressure, Reducing the risk of coronary heart disease and stroke, Increase bone density (excellent for older women), which helps prevent osteoporosis. Reducing high cholesterol and improve blood lipid profile. Helps to control body weight and reduce body fat especially if you have a walk after eating lunch this will cut the amount of fat your body stores by using it to fuel your exercise. Reduces the risk of colon cancer and non insulin dependant diabetes. Helps osteoarthritis, flexibility and co-ordination therefore reducing the risk of falls and finally enhancing mental well-being. 

We all know the classic cliché "walk don't drive" but this will really help your cardio fitness levels. If you have children taking them with you will also help their health, walk them to school if you can if not park as far as you can so you can walk some of the way there, if the mornings are chaos try it when picking them up instead, it also might help them calm down a bit before they get home.

If you work .. try getting off the bus or train a stop early, not only will give you a nice walk and reduce your stress levels but might even reduce your fare. All we have to do is organise a bit and get up a little earlier. If you are too busy in the morning don't worry, the best time to exercise is in the afternoon or early evening.

Once a week take a longer walk along a completely different route to keep things interesting think Sunday afternoon constitutional, Do some window shopping for a couple of hours (yes this is still classified as walking!). It's always a good idea to use a pedometer to gauge how much walking you are actually doing it might be a good ideal to get one with a panic alarm as this will serve a double purpose.

Swimming

Great all rounder

Swimming is a great low impact cardio vascular workout it will help you loose those pounds and unlike other weight training programs, swimming does not put strain on connective tissues, the main advantage to swimming is that because when you swim you need to move your body against the resistance of water it involves most of the major muscle groups, giving your body a great all round workout, also the more you increase your pace the better the aerobic workout will be.

Good ways to get yourself to the pool is to join a swim club, most towns have a leisure centre with a swimming pool and hold classes for water aerobics and swim clubs, which can also be a great social event. Swimming with your children once a week is also a terrific way to help them too.

According to current research exercising in waist-deep water reduces the pressure on joints by 50 per cent, while exercising in chest-deep water reduces it by as much as 75 per cent.

Swimming can be very beneficial to your heart, lungs, and muscles. Regular swimming builds up muscle strength and stamina, and improves posture, flexibility and is a geat workout for all the major muscle groups. Swimming can be particularly helpful for those of us who are overweight or suffering from leg or lower back problems and after a woman has undergone a breast surgery, doctors often suggest swimming as part of the recovery process.

It is advisable that you consult a doctor before commencing an swimming exercise program if you have any medical issues as they can confirm which swimming strokes are moderate and which can be strenuous and which one is best for your body.

Jogging

As long as you're healthy and take it easy to start with, anyone can run, jogging is a very effective cardio workout. All you need is a little enthusiasm.

As with all exercise, you must warm up first. Start by walking at a brisk pace, then gradually break into a slow jog. Run at a pace at which you can still hold a conversation, but which definitely feels harder than walking. If you're getting too breathless to talk, slow down or walk for a while until you're breathing more easily. To begin with, aim to run / walk in this way for ten minutes in total. Do this every second or third day, gradually reducing the walking time and increasing the running until you can run for the full ten minutes. At the end of each session, warm down by finishing with a slow jog or brisk walk until your heart rate and breathing have returned to more normal levels. Stretch while your muscles are still warm. Next, start to increase the total duration of your run by a minute or two every third session, until you can manage 30 minutes three times a week. Even if you're feeling good, don't be tempted to increase your running time by more than ten per cent each week. Many people are put off running because they find it boring. For this reason, it is important to get a bit of variety in your running.

There are many different sorts of running; road running, cross-country running, fell running (running in the hills), you could run at your local athletics track, join a running club, or gym using a treadmill or try the new bare foot running movement which is much better for your joints . Stay motivated by: Have a clear aim .. such as competing in a local fun run or being able to run non-stop for an hour. Be realistic .. Don't commit to run a marathon in three months if you've never run before. Think of yourself as a runner.. Think in terms of "when I go for my run" rather than "if I go for a run". Keep a diary. Record your progress, the time of day, type of weather etc.



As a high-impact activity, running can maintain or increase bone density, helping to offset osteoporosis. Unfortunately, it can also put increased stress on your joints compared to lower impact activities such as walking and cycling, especially if you're overweight. Therefore, if you have a history of diabetes, chest pain, angina, asthma, epilepsy, are overweight, have high blood pressure, had recent surgery or are pregnant it is important to consult a doctor first.

Bare Foot Running

​Much better for your joints

Less stress on all joints including ankles and knees.  Trainers put your foot at the wrong angle for running as our bodies are designed to run on the ball of the foot this creates stress on .  Trainers encourage you to put your heal down first this creates extra strain on the joints, new bare foot running shoes have been designed ergonomically help you run like your body was designed to run 

It has been suggested that if you need that little extra help with your bowl movements, jogging is the thing to do, it can really help, although be sure there is a toilet near by as it can become quite urgent.

HIT (High Intensive Interval Training)

Much harder then it sounds

This HIT training is a new way to think about exercise, government guidelines at the moment recommend five sessions of 30 minutes a week.  HIT training is turning this on it's head.  Research suggests that it is intensity not length of training that matters.  Although, any exercise will reduce the amount of fat in the blood.



Around 3 minutes a week that is 3x 30 seconds of intensive sprinting on a gym type bicycle followed by 1 to 2 minutes of rest is all you need to keep fit once a week and that repeated 3 times a week, according to 7 years of research supported by Prof Jamie Timmons (Systems biology dept, Loughborough University) and Barry Jay Celebrity trainer.  

Before considering this exercise it is best to consult your doctor and do some research.