Tag Archives: cardio

A New Way to Twerk-Out

I know, I know. The word twerk probably generates a negative (or even violent!) reaction because you’re automatically associating it with Miley Cyrus’ unforgettable performance on this year’s VMAs.

miley twerk

But don’t let that completely ruin your opinion of twerking- there’s actually a lot more to it!

If you’re wondering what exactly twerking means, let me help you out a bit. Urban Dictionary lists several fascinating descriptions of the word – my personal favorite being “to work one’s body, as in dancing, especially the rear end.” Can you paint that mental picture?

I was hiking with a friend last week who told me about a trip she and her mother recently took to North Carolina to visit her sister. During their visit, the three women decided to step outside of their comfort zone and take a class at a local studio that offered various “alternative” types of workouts. The one they signed up for was called Twerk It – and is exactly what you’d imagine. The instructor showed the class the art of twerking and all of the booty-shaking strength training and cardio that goes along with it! My friend said it was the most fun exercise class she’s ever done in her life and was totally shocked by just how much of a workout it was. (more…)

Running in Place or Running Through Space: What’s the Better Workout?

Today we contemplate a question that’s plagued intellectuals for centuries: what’s the better workout, running in place or actually running? We consulted Kymberly Williams-Evans, MA, who with twin sister Alexandra founded FunAndFit.org, to help shed some light on the subject.

Her answer: “The best one for the body is the one you will actually do and enjoy.”

There are no negative consequences to either approach, and Kymberly added that “the better activity is determined by the runner’s goals and abilities.”

Running

Running in place is a relatively low impact exercise with little risk of injury. Because stationary running is powered by the body’s quadriceps and has a ball of the foot takeoff, Kymberly said, “In-place running rarely leads to shin splints and almost anyone can run in place with minimal risk of injury or joint stress.” She logically cautions that if you live in an unsafe neighborhood, you might want to run inside; if you live in an upstairs apartment, you should probably take it outside.

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Arnold Schwarznegger Crashes Reddit Feed and Defends Variety in Fitness Approaches

Redditors got a larger than life surprise while casually scrolling through the fitness feeds today. Celebrities aren’t uncommon on the social site, as their “Ask Me Anything” threads are incredibly popular, but it was a shock to see former California governor and actor Arnold Schwarzenegger show up to chastise the bickering and defend that everyone gets fit differently.

Arnold

The hubbub started when a Reddit user posted a link to a cardio workout developed by fitness site Fitocracy. The 15 minute workout—aptly dubbed “the best cardio routine humanly possible“—was released in conjunction with The Governator’s 1% Challenge, a crusade that encourages people to devote one percent of their day to fitness. After the posting, hordes of Reddit users did what Reddit users d0: verbally spar in the comment section. (more…)

4 Minute Fitness with the Tabata Method

Would you believe it if someone told you that in just four minutes you would not only improve your fitness level, you would also burn more calories per minute than running ten miles an hour, plus increase your metabolism 30 minutes post workout? According to researcher Dr. Michele Olson, aka, the Exercise Doctor, it’s true! It’s been backed up by numerous research studies, and it’s called the Tabata Training Method.

“This particular style of interval training has profound effects even on short-term, post-exercise metabolism,” has explained Olson. “It would take five times the amount of typical cardio exercise, like a twenty-minute brisk walk, to shed the same number of calories that result from a four-minute Tabata.”

kettlebells

Tabata is an interval training workout designed to push you to your anaerobic threshold for 20 seconds, with a 10 second recovery break, for a total of four minutes. Designed by Izumi Tabata, a Japanese trainer of athletes, the Tabata method seems to be a major breakthrough in fitness training programs. However, it should be practiced with caution. (more…)

Saturday Morning Drill: Jump Rope It

Jumping rope is such a versatile exercise because it can be done anywhere, any time, literally using just a piece of rope. It’s also extremely effective and can burn upwards of 730 calories an hour depending on your weight and intensity level, according to the Mayo Clinic.

The best part? You feel hardcore jump roping and it’s fun! It’s an activity for kids and adults, no matter what your experience or fitness level may be.

In this full body workout we use nothing but a jump rope to scorch calories and tone your muscles. Complete the circuit once all the way through, take a three minute break and then repeat it all over again once and even twice for more of a challenge.

If you don’t have a jump rope, just complete the moves as described holding an “imaginary” jump rope. Let’s get started!

View Saturday Morning Drills: Jump Rope It Slideshow

Wouldn’t be Caught Dead Doing Yoga? DDP Yoga Was Made for You

I admit to shrugging my shoulders when I first heard of the DDP Yoga program, referred to as “Ain’t Your Mama’s Yoga.” Originally titled Yoga for Regular Guys, I thought it was just some egotistical attempt at yoga by some inflexible macho man. I was wrong.

Developed by former pro wrestler Diamond Dallas Page, DDP Yoga is not your average yoga. Just minutes into a high-spirited interview I had with Dallas, it was clear that he is not your average yoga teacher.

Muscle-clad, tatted, and standing at a lofty 6 foot 4 inches, you definitely wouldn’t want to be Dallas’ opponent in the wrestling ring, or meet him in a dark alley. But watching Dallas in action on his DDP Yoga DVDs, and speaking with him over the phone, left me inspired. (more…)

A Beginner’s Guide to HIIT Training

If you didn’t already know, HIIT stands for High Intensity Interval Training. The simplest way to explain HIIT is that it’s an organized cardiovascular training method. It’s comprised of high intensity exercise intervals of short durations mixed with low intensity intervals for recovery. It requires high effort (on an intensity scale of 1-10, at least a 7) of sprints lasting from thirty seconds to two minutes, followed with a different low intensity exercise lasting 1-2 minutes. The low intensity part of the workout is designed to be a break in order for your body to recover from the sprints and prepare itself to begin sprinting again.

What are the benefits of HIIT?

Why would someone choose HIIT over a standard, lengthier cardio session? The difference between the two is the amount of calories burned after the workout is complete. After finishing a long distance jog, your body stops burning calories as soon as you stop jogging. After HIIT training, you’re body continues to burn calories even after you’re done sprinting. That means you can spend less time on your cardio workout and still burn at least the same amount of calories, if not more. More benefits include: (more…)

Saturday Morning Drill: A Beginner’s Workout for Your New Year’s Resolution

It’s January, and you know what that means. It’s diet season and everyone’s out to be successful with their New Year’s Resolutions. Whether your goal is to lose weight, gain muscle or to just simply become healthier, it’s easier said than done. For a lot people, getting started is the hardest part. Knowing what to start with may be even more difficult.

For this week’s Saturday Morning Drill, we’ve put together a simple beginners workout that can be done anywhere at any time by using nothing but your own body weight. This is a total body workout that will really get your heart beating, the blood flowing and the muscles working. But don’t worry, it’s definitely bearable. The last thing we want to do is discourage you on the first workout!

This workout is divided into four sections. You’ll start with a type of cardiovascular exercise to get your heart rate up and follow it (without rest) with a strength training exercise. Between each section, rest for one to two minutes. Practice this every day for your first week and see if you can work your way up to doing the workout multiple times in a row.

View A Beginners Workout for Your New Years Resolution Slideshow

Also Read:

Beginners Guide to Resistance Training

Saturday Morning Drills: Post-Workout Stressing 

Absolute Beginners Fitness: 3 in 1 Kettlebell

5 Rookie Fitness Mistakes You Can Correct Today

Would it surprise you to learn I was once an unfit mess? Not that I am perfect today, but about 14 years ago I started a journey to fitness and a quest to reclaim my life and health.

I was a poor college student who didn’t even know what a personal trainer was, much less had the spare cash to afford one. I started with a very inexpensive gym membership and two books: Weight Training for Dummies and Body For Life. Both are great books and I still recommend them today. But they leave a lot of room for interpretation, especially for someone as headstrong as I am.


Needless to say, I made quiet a few mistakes in the beginning of my journey. Let me share a few examples of my early missteps in hopes of saving you the time I wasted and the frustration I experienced.

1. Lifting weights like a guy. I had no idea how to train for fat loss vs. muscle gain. There is nothing wrong with a body part or upper/lower split, like the workout plan in Body for Life, it just isn’t the most effective for ladies trying to lose fat. This is especially true in the beginning. It took me quite a while to learn the value of a well-designed full body workout full of multi-joint compound movements like push ups and squats. (more…)

Saturday Morning Drill: 80s Fitness Revived

When it comes to health and fitness each decade has its own claim to fame. Crossfit, P90x, Zumba, spinning and yoga claimed the 2000s. The Atkins Diet, Soloflex, Tae bo and the release of fitness DVDs claimed the 90s (raise your hand if you still have one or two tapes in your arsenal). And when it comes to the 80s it was almost more about the style than the actual exercises.

Side ponies, bright pastel spandex and scrunchy socks reigned supreme. And so did trampoline workouts, Suzanne Somers and Jane Fonda, who released her first workout video in 1982 titled “Jane Fonda’s Workout.” The video was so well received it sold more than 1 million copies! That’s a lot of workout tapes and spandex, even for the 80s.

Though we have a few 90s-born babies in our office, the majority of our staff was born in the 1980s, meaning we have a personal fondness for fitness from that era (myself included). So this week’s Saturday Morning Drill channels that decade with workout moves that require no equipment and tone your whole body. The best part? It’s an absolute blast. So get on your tightest neon spandex, fashion your hair in a side pony and let’s get started!