Category Archives: Fitness

Keeping Fit Shaving Your Head and Dating

 

Let’s face it! It’s tough to be a single guy who is out there in the dating market after 40. You know that many single women your age or older are going for those younger guys, but you want to stand out as a quality guy who ages well. You can’t do anything to stop what nature is doing to your body, but you can keep it in the best shape possible and look your best. Here’s what we recommend:

  1. Get back to the gym. Women could easily say that menopause changes their entire body chemistry, but aging also gives many men typical effects such as balding and low testosterone. As a guy, you may not have as much testosterone or energy as you wish you would, and health issues can make it difficult to keep up with dating and work life. If you want to feel more energy and hit the dating scene, then you should make time for the gym. This will give you endorphins to elevate your mood. It also helps you to keep your body in shape and be prepared to resist disease. Regular exercise can help you tone up your body and feel more energetic. Prospective partners find a healthy look to be positive, especially because it indicates that you could be ideal for a long-term match.
  2. Change your look. As guys, we can also shave our heads and adopt a more mature look. It’s about accepting where we are in our lives and then working with what we’ve got. If you are going to go to that level, you may also want to try a hair tattoo which makes it look like you have hair or augments that little bit of natural hair that you have. With a customizable look, you can appear to be any age that you want. You could also try a proven hair loss treatment to stop the balding or to regrow hair.
  3. Get out there and be social! You want to feel more manly in the body that you now have. So, you work out, feel healthy and athletic, sleep better, and eat well. Keep your clean-shaven hairstyle. It’s consistent with the times, maybe even grow a beard or a goat-tee. Remember, your self-esteem will impact your success in the dating world. You can do some self-reflection and try to accept your current look and work. This helps you build self-confidence. Feeling comfortable in your own body will help you get closer potential partners. If you want a good match, you’ll only want to keep the interest of the one that’s a real match.

Putting yourself into the dating world and aiming for success means that you must keep going out with new people and preparing yourself for potential rejections. You will meet multiple people who may or may not click with you even if there is an initial attraction. It’s better to take your time and find the partner with the right chemistry than it is to rush into a relationship with the wrong mate.

 

Resources for this article:

https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/self-esteem/

http://www.mensfitness.com/training/workout-routines/workout-boost-your-testosterone

https://skalp.com/hair-thinning-in-men/

A Beginner’s Guide to Taking Up Boxing

 

How to get into boxing 

Boxing has soared in popularity in recent years and offers many benefits. Our beginner’s guide tells you how to get into this challenging yet rewarding sport.

Boxing as a sport has seen a surge in popularity in recent years, enjoying an increase of 30,000 participants in the last six months alone, including almost 12,000 women and girls. Offering an array of both physical and mental benefits, boxing’s growing popularity is unsurprising. If you’d like to experience these benefits for yourself, read on for our tips and advice on starting out in the world of boxing.

Why choose boxing?

With so many sports out there, why choose boxing? Well, first of all it’s one of the best all-round workouts you can do, burning in excess of 700 calories per hour, and helping you to lose weight, build muscle, increase fitness and improve your strength, speed and agility.  What’s more, it also benefits you mentally, acting as a great stress reliever, boosting self-esteem and instilling discipline and self-control.

Getting started

Before you head out and start boxing, first identify your motive for taking up the sport. Do you want to lose weight and improve your fitness, or do you want to compete more seriously? Nailing down your motives at this early stage will help you to choose the right gym and workout regimen for your aspirations. Boxing is an extremely physical sport and its sheer intensity can often be a shock to the system to beginners. Help get yourself prepared by doing all you can to improve your fitness and shed excess weight before you set foot in a boxing gym – a mix of high and low intensity cardio, such as sprinting and jogging, and a light weights workout are all great for this.

Choosing a gym

If you are serious about taking up boxing you will need to learn the correct techniques, which means finding a good boxing gym and trainer. There are lots of different gyms out there and finding the right one for you can be a bit of a minefield. It’s important to do your research, so look up different gyms online in your area and ask any boxing friends or acquaintances for recommendations. Once you have found some gyms you like the look of, go along to check them out and have a chat with the trainers. Be open about what you’re hoping to achieve (whether that’s improving your fitness or boxing professionally), what time commitment you can give and what your budget is.

As a general rule, you should look for a gym that has an encouraging atmosphere for beginners, and that has a focus on learning proper technique and continuing improvement. A good trainer should also be able to offer a workout regime that is tailored to your physical abilities.

Kit yourself out

Although you don’t need to spend a fortune when first starting out, it makes sense to kit yourself out with a few basic pieces of equipment. Hand wraps, a water bottle, a skipping rope and a good pair of boxing gloves should be all you need during the early stages – you can always invest in more, or better quality pieces of kit once you know for sure that you want to continue with the sport. When it comes to clothing, you don’t need anything fancy – a vest top and some Adidas boxing shorts will easily suffice.

What to expect

The key thing to be aware of is that boxing is hard work and, in the early days, your body will hurt – a lot! It’s strenuous, repetitive and tough on your body so you need to be committed if you want to progress. The other thing to be aware of is that it may be a while before you actually get in the ring. Your trainer will want to make sure you have mastered the basic techniques and are physically fit before putting you up to spar against another fighter, so you will likely spend a lot of the early days of your training doing bag work and improving your fitness.

Boxing is undoubtedly a challenging sport but it’s a rewarding one too, and with the right mental attitude, a desire to work hard and a strong sense of commitment, you’ll soon find yourself reaping the benefits of this majestic sport.

Treadmill Tips for Keeping Fit

 

Keeping fit is essential for a person if they want their body to function properly. There are many health benefits of physical fitness.

Constant exercise helps you reduce the risks of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, metabolic syndrome and some cancers. Keeping fit also helps to control weight and improves your bones, mood and mental health.

One of the effective ways of keeping fit is by running or walking the treadmill. Contrary to the pounding of hard pavements, it is easier on your joints and cardiovascular system.

Ten tips for keeping fit on the treadmill

  1. Make sure you have everything you might need. Proper shoes and sufficient space behind the treadmill (in case you fall back). A hand towel and a heart monitor are also necessary.
  2. Make sure the treadmill is tested before using it. There is nothing funny about falling off a moving treadmill. The belt should be the correct size. The handrails should provide a good firm grip.
  3. Stretch or warm up before jumping on the treadmill. If you increase the speed of the treadmill without a warm up, your body will suddenly go too fast. That does not sound good.
  4. When buying, pick a good walking treadmill that will function regardless of how regularly it used. Look for discounts and sales worthy of attention but do not be afraid to go deeper into your pockets for a good treadmill. It’s worth it!

Otherwise, if you are not in a position to buy there is running machine hire available and treadmill hire in Cork here.

  1. Follow the rules of speeding on the treadmill.

If you are a beginner, start slow.

The speed should eventually be fast enough for your heart to race.

Walk at a speed that does not make you gasp.

  1. Make it fun! The more interesting your treadmill routine is, the more motivated you feel. Use whatever works for you. It could be music, a screen sliding your “body goals” pictures or inviting a friend.
  2. Regularly change your workout routine. Mix muscle building and cardio for a better outcome. Try the chest press machine, bench press, push ups and some weights!
  3. Use a treadmill that goes up to a 20% incline mode for good cardiovascular health and strong muscles. Decline mode can negatively affect your knees.

Remember to continually add four to five minutes to your workout session every week.

All the best in your keeping-fit-goals!

Want to Get Fit this New Year? The Top Ten Exercises You can Do at Your Office Desk

 

 

We spend a lot of time sitting down. If you don’t believe us, just think about it – you probably spend about eight to nine hours sitting at your desk, and you may be spending approximately an hour or two a day sitting down during your commute to work. Afterwards, you’re more likely than not sitting down for supper, sitting down in front of the telly, and so on. But sitting down for a good number of hours each day need not be bad for you if you can do some exercise, right? Fortunately, you can. Here are the top ten exercises you can do at your office desk daily.

Desk pushups

With your hands on your office desk, move your feet backwards until you reach an angle of 45 degrees. Then do as many pushups as you can – a dozen would be a good start.

Book lift

Grab a heavy book, hold the book behind your head, and extend your arms upwards. Drop the book down then repeat the process.

Shoulder squeeze

Pretend you have a pencil between your shoulders. Then imagine squeezing the pencil between the blades of your shoulders. Repeat the process several times.

Neck squeeze

Sit up and move your left ear downwards until it’s parallel to your left shoulder. Hold the pose for several seconds then do the same thing on the right side.

Upward reach

Lace your fingers together and try to reach up as high as possible. Make sure your palms are facing upwards whilst you do it.

Shrugging

Raise both your shoulders up to your ears then hold the pose for several seconds. Release and repeat the process several times.

Knee hug

Bend your right knee and lift your leg up. Then grab your leg with your arms; try to pull it as close as possible to your chest. Hold the pose for ten seconds then release.

Open up your chest

Whilst sitting down, bring your two hands to your back and try pressing your hands together. Make sure you are sitting up and hold the pose for the next five to ten seconds.

Looking over your shoulder

Turn your head to the right and try looking over your right shoulder. Hold the pose for five to ten seconds and repeat the same on your left side.

Chin drop

Let your chin drop to your chest and then roll your head in a gentle motion from one side to the other.

After these 10 exercises to do at your desk, reward yourself with a snack, some office small talk, or even with an exciting game of bingo online. Go ahead, you deserve it – as much as you deserve a healthier you for the new year.

Image attributed to stockimages/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Begin a Trampoline Exercise Routine

 

Have you ever found yourself watching the Olympics and wishing you could have the same control over your body? If you’re tired of watching and ready to get moving, there are a couple of steps you might take. The first step is to find a trained coach at a reputable facility. The second step is to gather together the right equipment, including comfortable, well-fitting clothes and non-skid socks or trampoline shoes. Third, become familiar with the necessary safety measures. For example, make sure you know who your spotters are and how thick the crash mats should be. Finally, be patient with yourself, becoming skilled on the trampoline takes time. Get some inspiration from the infographic found here:

”Olympic

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Staying Physically Fit for Football Games

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It is not easy being a football player. You need to balance your social life, family life and your time to practice the game. Those who have succeeded in their games would not have reached where they are now if not for their hard work and dedication. It means that anyone can do well in the game. You just have to set your eyes on the top prize and make sure you do whatever it takes to win the game.

Constant practice

There is no skill in football that you can’t learn if you keep practicing. It is important that you place your focus on each skill that you wish to be great at. Once you have mastered a skill, then you can move on to another skill. You don’t give up just because you feel like you can’t master certain skills. You have to keep trying and trying. You can even invite your teammates to help you out. Being great in the game requires constant practice and being on the field most of the time.

Hitting the gym

The thing about playing football is that it requires body strength, from top to bottom, even if you are mostly using your feet. It helps a lot if you also hit the gym to build your upper body strength. You constantly use your feet during the actual game, but it is at the gym where you can build your upper body strength and even do some cardio to help you with breathing and proper blood flow. This can be done once or twice a week. It doesn’t really matter how often you hit the gym. The most important thing is that once you are there, you focus on the parts of your body that need enhancement.

Time to relax

Aside from being physically prepared, it also helps if you are mentally focused for the game. This is where rest and relaxation come in. You have to make sure that you are fully relaxed after practicing. This helps a lot so that you will be in a good mood for your next game.

Playing games online is one of the best ways for you to stay relaxed. You can play slot machines, virtual soccer games or poker if you wish to do so. These are competitive online games that will also help motivate you to set your eyes on the prize. At the same time, these games help make you feel relaxed. Once you are done playing, it is as if you have not spent an entire day on the field.

Using all these techniques will surely give you a clear path towards victory in football.

Can You Lower Cholesterol Through Exercise?

can-you-lower-cholesterol-through-exercise

Those of us who enjoy sport tend to see it as a panacea for all ills. A bit overweight? Exercise. Feeling sad? Exercise. Want to set yourself a challenge? Exercise. But what if you have recently done a cholesterol test and your levels are elevated? Is exercise a good solution here? In this article we discuss the research behind cholesterol and sport, looking at how you can lower your levels safely and effectively, and whether exercise can help.

What is cholesterol, and why might you need to lower it?

Let’s start with the basics. There’s no point trying to lower something if we don’t know what it is!

Cholesterol is a fat-like substance created by the liver and found in the blood. There are two different types: HDL (or “good”) cholesterol and LDL (or “bad”) cholesterol.

When people talk about having raised cholesterol they are generally speaking about LDL – this kind can build up, and if there’s too much in the blood it’s considered one of the risk factors of heart disease. Meanwhile, HDL-cholesterol can pick cholesterol up and take it to the liver to be destroyed, making it the good kind.

Confused? It’s always helpful to speak to a healthcare professional – and you can always request a cholesterol test along the way.

Can you lower cholesterol through exercise?

So now you know what cholesterol is, the question remains: Can you lower bad cholesterol levels through exercise?

The answer isn’t straightforward. Studies have found a link between LDL cholesterol and being overweight, so if you have elevated levels, exercising more may be a good step to take as it can help you maintain a healthy weight.

That said, if a cholesterol test has revealed that your levels are elevated, the most important thing to do is to take a look at your diet. Having a healthy, balanced diet overall is a good start, but it’s replacing saturated fat with unsaturated fat that’s the major change to make.

How much exercise should we be doing?

Whether you’re trying to maintain healthy cholesterol levels or not, exercise is important for your health. If you don’t do much sport at the moment, this doesn’t mean you should start trying to run marathons – it’s important to always work from your base level and gradually increase.

The NHS suggests a minimum of 30 minutes of aerobic activity five days a week, so start by trying to get to that point. Once there, you can then add to it. If you’re currently walking 30 minutes a day, for example, try stepping that up to jogging instead for two of those days each week – and if you’re doing that already, why not try weights?

Even if the link between cholesterol lowering and exercise isn’t clear cut, it’s still an important part of any healthy lifestyle. Once you get the exercise bug, you’ll feel great and your body will love you for it – just find something you enjoy and get going.

How Smoking Affects Exercise Performance

How Smoking Affects Exercise Performance

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How Smoking Affects Exercise Performance

It’s well known that smoking is harmful, but how exactly does it affect the body? Here we look at what you need to know about the effects of smoking and how to improve your exercise performance…

Keeping healthy and fit is important, but for those who smoke, keeping active can become difficult due to the many harmful affects smoking has on the body. However, regular exercise can also help smokers to kick the habit all together.

Here’s how smoking affects the body:

Less energy and stamina. When exercising, blood vessels in your muscles dilate and blood flow increases to boost the oxygen supply to your muscles, providing the energy required to push your body to its limit. These limits, however, are reduced when you smoke due to the carbon monoxide within cigarettes, which binds to the haemoglobin in your red blood cells, preventing oxygen from doing the same, thus reducing the amount of oxygen available.

Bad blood and narrow arteries. Nicotine and carbon monoxide raise your fibrinogen, which clots blood, and lowers your high-density lipoprotein (HDL), causing atherosclerosis. This makes your blood sticky allowing lipids to accumulate, which build up in your arteries and narrows them. As such, it becomes increasingly difficult for blood to flow to organs that need it, making it harder to breathe and increasing the time it takes for the body to repair.

Chronic illness. Smoking causes the mucous membranes within your airways to swell and the tar in cigarette smoke coats the lungs creating resistance, making it difficult to catch your breath. Tar also reduces the elasticity of the air sacs in your lungs reducing their ability to absorb oxygen and decreasing your lung capacity. This can lead to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) including emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

Increased heart rate. Smokers have a higher resting heart rate than non-smokers because of the extra work and strain put on the heart to pump oxygen-rich blood throughout the body. This means smokers are at risk when exercising as their heart rate can rise to dangerous levels.

How to improve performance

For those who smoke, the best way to improve exercise performance is to kick the habit. Regular exercise can be used as a distraction to help you quit smoking, however if you need some help, there are a variety of smoking cessation aids available, from nicotine gum and patches, to electronic cigarettes, which are now the most popular aid to quitting in England. LiquideCigUK.co.uk explain a couple of reasons for this, quite simply, “… they’re less harmful than traditional cigarettes and cost up to 80% less.” The UK’s Royal College of Physicians also state that there is resounding evidence that e-cigarettes are “much safer” than smoking and aid quitting.” And that, “…vaping could improve the lives of millions of people…” What’s more, according to Statistic Brain, 29% of those who tried e-cigarettes quit smoking within six months.

Those who quit smoking benefit from improved exercise performance compared to those who continue to smoke. What’s more it’s suggested that  20 minutes after quitting, your heart rate drops, after 12 hours the carbon monoxide levels in your blood drops to normal, and after two or three weeks lung function improves!

How to Target Problems Areas at Home

How to Target Problems Areas at Home

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How to Target Problems Areas at Home

While there is no denying the health and fitness benefits of a full body workout, for some, their focus is on addressing a particular target area. If this sounds like you, and you are finding it hard to find the right exercises for you, below we have compiled a list of exercises which target two of the most common problem areas – Thighs and Stomach.

Thighs

This is one of the most common places for cellulite, and can be a real struggle area for many people. Unfortunately, most thigh exercises focus on muscle growth. To help remove cellulite, try these workouts.

Chair Leg Raise

Find a stable chair and sit with your knees bent at a 90-degree angle, and hold the side of the chair with your hands. Keeping your back as straight as possible, lift one leg off the ground until it is straight. Hold this position for 30 seconds. Slowly lower the leg back to a 90-degree bend and alternate the other leg. This is particularly good for toning the front of your thighs.

Stairs

While it may not be the most appealing of exercises, the truth is, stairs are a great way to tone your thighs. Instead of working this into an exercise routine, build it into your everyday life. If you need to take the elevator up or down two levels of your apartment or work building, take the stairs instead.

If you find that the process is slower than you would like, consider using a purpose designed workout tool. The Groupon Coupons page for Fascia Blaster has products which can help reduce the appearance of cellulite and be used in conjunction with your exercises.

Stomach

When most people think about their stomach, they think about getting a rock hard six pack. However, for most, the challenge is keeping it trim.

Plank

Starting in a raised push-up position, lower your arms until your forearms are parallel to and resting on the floor. Your weight should be distributed between your forearms and your toes. When you have obtained this position, hold your body in a straight line for as long as you can. If this is your first time, don’t be discouraged if you can only hold for 10-20 seconds. There is no rush with planking – so take it at your own pace.

Seated Leg Lift

In a sitting position, straighten your legs out in front of you, and place your palms on the ground beside you. One at a time, and while keeping your legs straight, lift your leg up. Hold this position for about 5 seconds, before slowly returning it to the floor and swapping legs.

Along with these ideas, be sure to manage a balanced diet and an overall healthy lifestyle. And remember, the key to any workout is persistence. If you don’t see the results within a week, don’t give up!