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Health and Fitness: Getting Back in Shape

Getting back in shape can be tough for most people. Perhaps you just have a new baby, new job, a physical injury and other life happenings and realized that you have been taking a long break from exercise – your muscles are slow, your lungs are burning and you just don’t feel right, then it is the right time for you to get back in shape.

Love your body shape, whether you want to tone up or drop down some weight these are the best and easy fitness tips that you can apply for yourself. This is the moment to get real. No more feeling sluggish and low self-confidence with your body. You can now look yourself in the mirror while working out towards your goal.

At first, it might be hard to start. It is like a car parked in a garage for a long time that is how our body looks like. It needs exercise, warming up and a little fix in order for the car to get back on the road. You can’t rush and you can’t immediately jump to intense exercise if your body is not used to it. For example:

  • Your lungs – your lungs are not used to working hard and might have lost its elasticity in which requires you to inhale air with efforts in order to get oxygen in your body.
  • Your blood vessels – living a sedentary lifestyle can decrease your blood volume and make your blood vessels smaller. Due to this, your cells will not be able to take hold of the oxygen from the blood efficiently. Thus your heart has to pump harder in order to produce more oxygen for the muscles.

These are the common sample of what will happen to your body if you have taking a long break from any physical activities or exercises. Moreover, your joints, knees, elbows, wrists, ankles and hips can also feel the pressure and stress when you suddenly push them back into workout habit.

However, the good news is that our body is extremely flexible! Give your body around 2 to 3 weeks of gradual exercise, your brain will adapt the changes and convert more muscles that will make your body moves better. If you have gone through your first 2 to 4 weeks of exercise, start adding some weights and sets and when you reached the 6 weeks point, you can easily be back to the same weights and intensity. Without further ado, I have included three common workouts that can help you get back in shape immediately. It is easy, cheap and applicable to do at home.

#1 Cardio Workouts

I decided to put this on top because this is the perhaps the most effective workout that can easily shed off calories and drop off extra pounds on your body. Cardio workout is known for its benefits for the heart, blood circulation and toned down your body. A 30-minutess of cardio workout can free you from heart disease and obesity. The good thing about cardio workout is that you don’t have to spend big sum of money for gym membership, as a matter of fact, you can do any activities such as running and walking outdoor, swimming, playing tennis and many more.

#2 Strength Workouts

Regardless of what your fitness goals are, you should not neglect strength training as part of your health workout. The benefits of strength training is that it can help increase your metabolism, strength, bones and help you lean out for overweight people and gain body mass for the extremely thin people. You do not have to spend money on expensive things in order to gain muscles; strength training is a routine that works on your muscles. There are a lot of free video tutorials online that can help you do strength training at home without using any equipment at all.

#3 Flexibility Workouts

In order to have a high quality of life and healthy body, always include flexibility as part of your workout routine throughout your whole life. There are plenty of flexibility exercises you can choose that suits your need such as simple stretching, yoga, Pilates, tai chi and the like. These exercises are simple and yet have its own distinct flexibility that allows the body to stretch.

There may be a lot of methods in order to lose weight such as fad diets, pills, fitness equipment or surgery but the most natural, safe and important method is living a healthy lifestyle and follows the basic rules. These basic rules of weight management might take a long time for your body to adjust but it is surely a long lasting and permanent methods. Do not take any diet pills supplements without your doctor’s advice or knowledge. It may be dangerous to your health in the long run or even damages your internal body system. Be wise and choose the natural way!

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The Effects of Negative Emotions to Your Health

Although we cannot control everything that is happening in our lives, we have significantly more inner power than we think. We need to be cautious of our repressed emotions, especially the negative ones, it can take away a lot of mental energy and eventually lead to health problems including high blood pressure, digestive disorder, chest pain, insomnia and the like.

Take some time to evaluate yourself and see what kind of baggage you are still carrying that cause burdens and prevent you from fulfilling and enjoying your present lives. These emotional baggages are hatred, anger, sadness, guilt, lethargy, suppression and the like.

According to researchers, stress, emotion and your personality traits have a great impact to your health, mentally and most of all physically. To name a few, depression increases the level of inflammatory-promoting proteins and abdominal fat, stress increases the risk of heart attack, sadness increase your pain receptors, suppressing your feelings can lower the immune system and many more.

It may sound ridiculous of how the negative emotions can affect your overall health since it is just merely an intellectual configuration. Let’s think it this way, have you noticed when you are feeling emotionally tense you experienced sweaty palms, constricted throat or stomach ache? Well, that is how our emotion is associated with the physical condition of the body.

As human we cannot escape the fact that we can feel variety of emotion every day. As a matter of fact, we are designed to experience all kinds of emotions but what makes it negative is when we got stuck to it for a very long time and this is when it will slowly damage our physiological and psychological health.

We need to discover more about how the mind-body connection works to help us better understand the way to overcome it. Some Eastern medicine has found ways to tone down this emotional tension through practicing yoga. Yoga help you increase your physical ability and skills and at the same time teach you to release the negative energy inside you through its poses and breathing. This particular alternative practice is not only well-appreciated in the Eastern countries but also in the Western countries because they believe it helps them enhance the mind-body connection efficiently and easily.

According to scientist Barbara Fredrickson, having positive emotions can greatly benefits your health in two ways: (1) they widen your perspective to the world; (2) they build up in the long run and create emotional flexibility. Dr. Fredrickson believed that positivity gives you better sleep, lesser colds, aids in faster recovery of cardiovascular stress and make you happier. Added to that, positivity such as feeling gratefulness, love, peacefulness, respect, lightheartedness and connection to your loved ones can directly influence your health condition and wellness. But first thing first, these are practices that need to be developed overtime and make it as a habit in the long run. Below are the few positive effects that can help you reverse the negative effects in your life and gives you better, prosperous life.

  • Forgiveness

Forgiveness is the state of accepting the negative situation that has happened in the past. The Stanford forgiveness Project has done a research regarding forgiveness to 260 adults in 6 weeks, and they found out that 70% of the people reported that they have overcome the feelings of hurt, 13% experienced lesser anger and 27% experienced lesser physical pain such as stomach ache, faintness and the like. Forgiveness is also associated with higher immune system, lower blood pressure, improve cardiovascular condition and longer the lifespan.

  • Gratefulness

Gratefulness is a simple practice of admitting all the good aspect in life whether it is big or small. Giving thanks with what you have and what you are can lead to better physical and emotional wellness. Count your blessing every day and see the positive changes that will happen in your life such as being happier and sleep better at nights.

  • Resiliency

According to Dr. Andrew Weil, resilience is like a rubber band; no matter how far you stretch it will always bounce back to its original state. Resilient people are like this. These people are able to bounce back from the negativity in their life although they have been stretched out by tough emotions like pain, sadness, frustration or grief. Resilient people do not avoid nor deny the suffering but maintain positivity throughout the tough times and eventually overcome them. As a result to this, they become better person because they allow challenges to teach them and make it as part of their personal growth.

Take full responsibility of the negative emotions that has happened in your lives and grow from it. Do not linger to it for long period of time because it will only destroy your overall well-being. Living a healthy lifestyle is not only a matter of eating healthy and exercise, but also exercises positivity in your lives.

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Lifestyle 101: Healthy Habits to Practice in 2015

New Year is here and I believe we are always looking for ways to improve ourselves that is why many people come up with the idea of “New Year’s resolution”. Whatever we may call it, the point is just the same – to make room for personal development and progress in our lives. Whether you are a businessman, students, workers etc. all of us have goals in our lives. However, the very first thing we must do is to take that small step forward and see changes that will follow right on. With that being said, I have included some “small” steps you can do every day in order to break your sedentary lifestyle and create changes that will become a habit and eventually lead you closer to a successful life.

EARLY TO BED, EARLY TO RISE

Sleeping early can help you wake up early; it is as simple as that. Getting up early enables you to relax and have some time for yourself, meditate and getting things done earlier. Most of us hate mornings because of the rush due to morning errands and fatigue from last night’s work. That is why it is advisable to sleep early and getting up early. When you start to make your body adapt to this changes for 1 month, it will be easier for you to make it as a habit for the 2nd month onward.

SIT DOWN AND READ

This is one of the common things that this generation has not practiced. Since gadgets and apps become a trend, younger generation seldom take the time to sit down and read. Change your lifestyle and challenge yourself to read few books at least every week. Never let your day pass by without reading something. Not only reading stimulates the brain processes, it also broadens your knowledge and perspective in life. Most people think that intelligent people read a lot, the truth is that people who reads a lot are intelligent people!

REGULAR EXERCISE

Exercise is one of the most important things for our body. Give yourself at least 30 minutes of daily exercise routine. Exercise produces endorphins that help increase your mood and energy levels. As a result to that, you will feel more keyed up and happier. People who are having trouble with depression are often encouraged to go out for a walk or run to help them release their stress.

BE GRATEFUL

Although this may sound like a small thing and an out-of-place habit, if you start to implement this habit in your daily life you will eventually realized what the power of gratitude can do to your lives. Take some time to show sincere gratitude to yourself and people around you. As time goes by, this habit will become natural and you will be surprise of how happy and contented person you will become.

PLAN AHEAD

Planning your day ahead can make you more productive and efficient. Planning ahead has its own advantages and disadvantages but either way it depends on how you utilize your time. On the other hand, it is normal to sometimes feel you can’t control of some things. Let go of the things that you can’t do or failed to do and move on to the next. You have done your part by planning ahead and working things out if things don’t work as it should be, take a deep breath and don’t be discourage nor allow the situation to take away your happiness and peace. Move on to the next and keep going!

SET YOUR PRIORITY IN LIFE

Many of us don’t realize that the most important thing in life is the one that is in our last priority-list in life and we end up wasting time on the things that we “thought” to be important. Take time to evaluate what are the things that matter the most to you and decide to focus and prioritize it. When harder things are completed, it will be easier for you to focus on the less-demanding things in life. By doing so, you can tremendously improve your efficiency in life.

JACK OF ALL TRADE…

Remember the idiom that goes “Jack of all trade, master of none”? This refers to a person that is good with many skills but not outstanding in any particular one. The year 2015 should be a year where you improve yourself in one area that you love doing and be great at it! It can be anything such as improving your running skills, writing skills, singing, playing a particular musical instrument and many more. Take time to improve in one thing you are good at and it will eventually boost your personal development and self-esteem in the long run.

If you ditch your old habits and change it to the new ones I believe you will see great changes in around a month of consistent practice. There is no right or wrong with these practices as long as you are committed and determined to improve yourself then you are on the right track!