Category Archives: Fitness

5 Components of Physical Fitness

While the definition of physical fitness can be a little complex or unclear and the definition of physical fitness can vary, most government health agencies and exercise scientists agree that there are 5 components of physical fitness related to health. These components provide a fairly accurate representation of how fit and healthy the body is as a whole (total or overall fitness). The 5 components are cardiovascular fitness (also referred to as cardio-respiratory endurance or cardiovascular endurance), muscular strength, muscular endurance, flexibility, and body composition.

Let’s take a closer look at these components individually.

1.) Cardiovascular fitness (or cardio-respiratory endurance or cardiovascular endurance)

Of the 5 components, cardiovascular fitness is the cornerstone that creates the pathway to improving your other fitness levels.

Cardiovascular fitness is the efficiency with which the body (the heart and lungs) delivers oxygen and nutrients to the required working muscles and transports waste products from the cells over a sustained period of time. Or to put it another way, it’s the ability of your heart and lungs to work together to provide the necessary oxygen and fuel to your body without quickly reaching a high level of fatigue and tiredness.

In our daily lives, we need cardiovascular fitness to handle the physical tasks and all of the “running around” we do.

A common test of cardiovascular fitness usually involves some type of sustained running. But typical examples of physical activities that relate to cardiovascular fitness are jogging, swimming, cycling, brisk or speed walking and any type of aerobic exercises. Aerobic exercise is the best way to improve cardiovascular fitness.

2.) Muscular strength

Muscular strength is the maximum amount of force (weight or heavy resistance) a muscle or muscle group can generate in a single effort to the point that no more repetitions can be done without rest. Muscular strength is quite the opposite of cardiovascular fitness in regards to the fact that cardiovascular fitness is measured over a certain period of time. While on the other hand, muscular strength is measured in one repetition.

In our daily lives, we need modest levels of strength to be able to perform everyday physical tasks like lifting, moving, carrying, etc.

A common test to measure upper body strength is some type of weightlifting exercise, such as the bench press. Anaerobic weightlifting exercises like the bench press, leg press, shoulder press, or bicep curls are examples of the best ways to improve muscular strength.

3.) Muscular endurance

Muscular endurance is the ability of a muscle or group of muscles to perform repeated movements (or to hold a particular position) with less than maximum force for an extended period of time or until muscular fatigue. Or, to put it simplistically, it’s how long your muscles can do something before getting too exhausted to finish.

Be careful not to confuse muscular endurance with muscular strength. While they can work together, they are definitely not the same. For many athletes, there may be a need to distinguish between muscular strength and muscular endurance. But for everyday people who want to easily perform their daily routines, are trying to stay healthy and fit, and just want to enjoy physical activities like hiking, biking, or just playing in the park with their children, muscular endurance plays a major role in fitness.

Common testing for muscular endurance can be dynamic (the ability to repeat contractions) or static (the ability to sustain a contraction). Dynamic tests would be to see how many push-ups or sit-ups, for example, a person can complete in a designated amount of time (e.g. 30 seconds, a minute, or maybe longer). Or, without being timed, the person could do as many repetitions of the exercise as they could until they couldn’t do anymore. An example of a static test would be the flexed-arm hang whereby the performer hangs on a bar until the designated stopping time or until they become too weak to continue hanging.

Muscular endurance can be improved by both aerobic and anaerobic exercises. Some examples would be biking, step machines and elliptical machines.

4.) Flexibility

Flexibility is the ability to move the joints or any group of joints, muscles, ligaments, and tendons through their full, normal range of motion without hindrance, discomfort, or pain.

Flexibility is actually more important to physical fitness than people realize. Not only does flexibility play a big role in performing many daily tasks, but maintaining or even increasing your flexibility is critical to protecting your joints and keeping them healthy. In addition, being flexible contributes to improving your lower back health, reducing the appearance and effects of arthritis, and reducing muscle-tendon injuries.

Not everyone has the same flexibility or flexibility requirements. Your flexibility tells you how limber you are. And, when it comes to testing your flexibility fitness level, the sit-and-reach test is most often used.

Stretching is the best way to improve flexibility. And, most fitness experts recommend a daily routine of static stretches for each joint.

5.) Body composition

Body composition is the percentage of fat in your body compared to your lean body mass (muscles, bones, tendons, ligaments, organs, etc.).

Body composition is a better indicator of your overall fitness condition than body weight. So understand that your total body weight or what you see on your bathroom scale does not tell you how much fat or lean body mass (muscle) you have.

Body composition is useful in helping to determine health risks. Therefore, knowing your body composition and how it relates to your overall fitness level is essential. An optimal ratio of fat mass to lean mass is a clear indicator of good fitness.

Your body composition is a consequence of the extent that you perform the other components of physical fitness. In other words, when you improve the other four components, it will have a positive impact on body composition resulting in less body fat. Alternatively, when you have a high body fat content ratio, you are considered overweight or possibly obese. And, it negatively affects the other fitness components as well as your daily performance, your appearance, and your overall health.

There are several methods that can be used to calculate body composition. The best method is underwater weighing. But due to the expense, this isn’t practical for the everyday person. Incidentally, if you can go to a university or some other place that is set up to do it, it would be well worth your time to check it out. Therefore, the most common method of determining your body composition is skinfold readings – using skinfold calipers and taking measurements from certain areas of your body.

A regular program involving aerobic exercise and strength training can help you decrease your body fat and increase your muscle mass; and thereby, significantly improving your body composition and general overall health and fitness.

In conclusion, you now know that being fit is not just about being able to bench press a lot of weight, but you also need to know how well you can handle running a mile, for example, and a few other things. The key is that by understanding the 5 components of physical fitness, you’ll be better able to assess your fitness level and determine what specific health and fitness goals you’d like to achieve.

Fitness Training Programs

Physical fitness is the state of the human body when it is in perfect health. Being fit is very important to stay alert both physically and mentally and also to ward off certain diseases that attack as the body ages. Fitness programs are schedules that allow a person to incorporate exercise into their daily routine. There may be many reasons for taking up a fitness program: to gain strength, to lose weight, to lose body fat, to fight certain disabilities, or just to become more fit.

Fitness training is for making the body stronger and fitter. There are many kinds of fitness training programs: cardiovascular training, strength training, flexibility training, nutrition, and weight management. All these can be incorporated into a single fitness program for having a healthy body weight, improved level of strength, improved co-ordination and a resilient body. Each of these depends on the kind of body we have and it’s potential. There is no ideal fitness training program. They are normally custom designed as per individual requirements and capabilities.

Fitness training increases metabolism, strength, flexibility and muscle tone, as well as decreasing stress levels in the body. There are also sports-specific fitness training programs like soccer fitness training, football fitness training, swimming fitness training, golf fitness training and so on. There are also fitness training programs for kids.

A fitness trainer should be able to design the right kind of fitness program. It should cover all relevant aspects like: strength, flexibility, aerobic and anaerobic endurance, agility, and speed. These days, there are many professional fitness training centers that have sophisticated equipment to suit all kinds of people and their fitness needs. These centers have professional and medical specialists who would be able to offer advice about the best kind of fitness program. They provide customized workout routines, nutrition plans, personal trainers, and expert guidance to make the results last.

Fitness Franchise

If you are looking for a franchise opportunity that will offer you a good earning potential, you may want to consider purchasing a fitness franchise. The current health obsessed climate makes a fitness franchise a good way to create a money-making business while helping people look and feel their best. There are a number of fitness franchise opportunities out there, and finding the right one can be a satisfying venture for your entrepreneurial spirit.

One type of fitness franchise is to open a fitness center. There are a number of types of fitness centers available for your fitness franchise purchase. You can even get specific with your fitness center. There are fitness franchise opportunities that are fitness centers exclusively for men or women or even ones that cater more to the serious fitness guru. Some fitness centers offer only specific types of fitness like jazzercise.

Another type of fitness franchise available is the weight loss center. Some weight loss centers function as both fitness centers and weight loss clinics. You will be able to use your fitness franchise to help people not only tone and exercise, but you will also be getting them on a better nutritional plan.

The third type of fitness franchise involves being a seller of fitness equipment. This type of fitness franchise opportunity can be done through a retail setting or even online. There are a lot of fitness franchise opportunities where you can sell specific types of fitness equipment to used fitness equipment. There is a great demand for people to have access to fitness equipment at home, so finding a fitness franchise to sell equipment can be very lucrative.

No matter what fitness franchise you choose, you still need to follow some basics of choosing and purchasing a fitness franchise. Remember that you will be responsible for all the aspects of your fitness franchise from sales, marketing, and human resources to customer service, operations, legal compliance, and accounting. The good thing is that most fitness franchise opportunities will at least offer you some basic guidelines for operations.

Be prepared to fill out an application for your fitness franchise which will involve a credit and often a background check. If you pass the fitness franchise guidelines, you will probably receive the fitness franchise’s Uniform Franchise Offering Circular, or UFOC, which you should read over carefully. The UFOC will include important information like the franchise history, key principles, financial statements, litigations, franchise openings and closings, contacts, agreements, requirements, and more.

Also, be aware that the success of your fitness franchise will be based upon a number of factors such as your territory, site location, and your commitment. Even though much of your success depends on you, it is nice to know that your fitness franchise has the support of the franchisor, so you have somewhere to turn for assistance.

9 Pioneers of Fitness

In composing any list of important people in almost any field, everybody will have his or her own favorites. Also, in weight lifting, body building, physical fitness, aerobics, just to name a few areas, there are so many people who have contributed so much that it is difficult to pare the list down adequately. I have attempted, however, to include people who have repeatedly come to my attention since my first contact with weight training at age 16 in 1961. I have tried to put the emphasis on people who I felt were somewhat pivotal in the areas of weight lifting, body building, aerobics or general physical fitness. I am sure that many readers will have their own favorites.

Eugen Sandow The Non Pareil (1867 – 1925) Born in Germany, Eugen Sandow has often been called “Father of Modern Bodybuilding”. Like Charles Atlas, as a youth, Sandow was a great admirer of Greek and Roman statues depicting athletes and gladiators. Sandow is considered to be a pioneer in bodybuilding because he measured statues to determine exact proportions and then worked to develop his own body parts to match them. In his late teens, while performing in strongman shows, he was spotted and taken on by legendary showman Florenz Ziegfeld. His big splash in America was at the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago. His intelligence, natural charm, and cultured appearance combined with his astounding physique and strength made him a star. Women actually paid him money for the privilege of feeling his muscles. For the men, he wrote widely on health, fitness, and bodybuilding. He, like Bernarr Macfadden and Charles Atlas offered a mail order course teaching his students how to achieve health and fitness. He eventually opened a progressive fitness club in London which stood in stark contrast to the dank, dark, and sweaty gyms of the day. Through his personality and innovation, he made exercise and physical fitness popular for a broader audience than had previously been reached.

Bernarr Macfadden (1868 – 1955) Born Bernard Adolphus McFadden in the state of Missouri, Bernarr Macfadden changed his first and last names because he felt that the new names had a greater appearance of strength. This was not the only strange activity of the man who advocated regular fasting, and some very esoteric health practices for the day and whose wife called him a kook. He combined his own personal views of fitness training and health practices into an entity he referred to as “Physical Culture” which became the title of his first magazine. He eventually became a bit of a publishing mogul, but was usually considered to be skirting the edges of reality in his obsessive approach to physical fitness. However, he inspired young men like Charles Atlas and brought the idea of health and fitness as a way of life to a broader portion of the public.

Charles Atlas (1892 – 1972) was born Angelo Siciliano in 1892 in Acri, Calabria, Southern Italy. In 1905, his parents emigrated to America with young Angelo. A few years later, he had changed his first name to “Charles” when he won a photo competition in a magazine run by the creator of “Physical Culture”, Bernarr Macfadden. Young Charles was inspired to improve his physique.by Greek statues he saw at the Brookly Art Gallery. His first attempts at fitness was with improvised barbells made of sticks and stones. His observation of animals in the zoo, however, led him to base a series of fitness actions on their apparent means of maintaining their fitness in captivity. He called his discovery Dynamic Tension and went on to market his program to thousands of boys and men. On the path to becoming “Charles Atlas”, he posed for statues of Atlas. Some of which were exhibited in the museum where he found his initial inspiration. At the time of his death, he was still exercising daily and running every other day. His course on Dynamic Tension had been the inspiration for over three million men and boys.

Bob Hoffman (1898 – 1985) Bob Hoffman is considered by many to be “Father of World Weightlifting” and was the founder of York Barbell. He was an athlete, nutritionist, weightlifter, coach and philanthropist. Although an exceptional athlete as a young boy, the mature Bob Hoffman was never a great weightlifter or coach. However, his vision, sense of purpose, and personal belief in the value of weightlifting led him to create York Barbell, a company which was long recognized as the leader in the manufacture of weightlifting equipment and which is still in existence today. while many felt his writings and opinions were “over the top”, his personal bravery and willingness to face adversity was shown not only in his later life as he espoused and defended his positions, but also during World War I where he was awarded three Croix de Guerres with two palms and a silver star from France, The Belgian Order of Leopold by Belgium, the Italian War Cross by Italy, and the Purple Heart by America.

Jack LaLanne (1914 – present) Francois Henri LaLanne, better known to the American public as Jack and considered the “godfather of fitness”, had a widely viewed TV show in the 1950’s. Interestingly, his show was probably seen and followed by more women than men, and he may have been instrumental in promoting the idea that women could “get fit”. Unlike many of the earlier proponents of fitness, Jack LaLanne studied his field very carefully and introduced what he felt his studies told him was the proper way to do things. He is still active in fitness today, marketing a wide line of fitness and nutritional products.

Joe Weider (1922 – present) Joe Weider is probably one of the most easily recognized figures in the field of bodybuilding today. He has been credited with not only being a driving force in the fields of body building and fitness, but has helped the careers of innumerable bodybuilders, not the least of which was a young Austrian named Arnold Schwarzenegger. He began his own fitness career by building his first barbells out of junked car wheels and axles. At age 17, with a stake of $7, he began his publishing career by rolling out the first issue of “Your Physique” in 1939. In 1968, he changed the name of the magazine to Muscle Builder, and in 1982 changed it again, this time to “Muscle & Fitness”. Together with his brother and partner, Ben Weider, Joe Weider founded the International Federation of Body Builders (IFBB). His publications now include such diverse offerings as “Shape”, “Men’s Fitness”, “Living Fit”, “Prime Health and Fitness”, “Fit Pregnancy”, “Cooks”, “Senior Golfer”, and “Flex”. Weider now offers a broad range of books on fitness and bodybuilding, nutritional supplements, and bodybuilding and weight lifting equipment and accessories.

Kenneth Cooper (1931 – present) A doctor (MD) and former Air Force officer, Dr. Ken Cooper is probably most widely known for his book, “Aerobics” which was published in 1968 and which was a driving force in getting me interested in fitness. Dr. Cooper’s down-to-earth description of what he called the “Training Effect” as well as a formatted process by which one could achieve health and fitness coupled with vivid descriptions of what the personal effects would be for someone pursuing a fitness program, made his book a success. In fact, some have speculated that Kenneth Cooper’s simple little book, “Aerobics”, may have been the impetus which put physical fitness into the minds and hearts of millions around the world. Today, Dr. Cooper is the head of the Cooper Aerobics Center in Dallas.

Richard Simmons (1948 – present) Flamboyant is one word commonly used to describe the bouncy, incessantly cheerful aerobics guru, Richard Simmons. It has been estimated that Richard Simmons has helped and encouraged people around the world to lose over 3,000,000 pounds through a combination of healthy eating and energetic exercise. Simmons has produced several programs, such as “Disco Sweat”, “Sweatin’ to the Oldies”, and “Stretchin’ to the Classics” that all include his humor and signature high level of excitement. He has created instructional products and programs that range from gentle stretching for the elderly to highly intense aerobic workouts. My wife, who hates exercise, loves Richard Simmons and actually got to where she could follow some very intense routines although she had to begin by sitting on the couch and just making the hand movements.

Jane Fonda (1937 – present) Many would not recognize the famous star of such films as “Barbarella” and “Coming Home”, and daughter of actor Henry Fonda, as a fitness pioneer or guru. For many years she was better known as an actress with a sexy body, a big name, and intense political views. However, beginning in 1982 and continuing into the mid 90’s, Ms. Fonda released several fitness videos which became very popular, particularly with women. In fact, today, many people who know of Jane Fonda know her more as a proponent of fitness, health, exercise, yoga, and aerobics than as a famous movie star. While Jane Fonda made no immediate contributions to the science of health and fitness, she, like Richard Simmons, was able to elevate its stature among a large female audience and helped make it fashionable to work out, sweat, be fit, AND feminine. Jane Fonda may have helped move the public awareness of the value and virtues of exercise and fitness to the point where many people now consider a physically fit woman to be a sexy woman just by virtue of her fitness.

Well, there you have it. Nine people who in some way positively affected, altered, or enhanced the fields of body building, weight lifting, aerobics, or physical fitness in general.

Portable Fitness Equipment

Since I first began personal training in 1985 people have stated basically the same goals: To lose fat and gain muscle, improve athleticism, heal the body,increase movement skills, spend little money and train whenever and wherever they wanted. I am pretty sure you want the same, but there’s a problem. Maybe you travel, it’s hard to get to the gym, or maybe you don’t like the gym and/or you can’t afford to build your own machine laden gym at home? So what do you do? Well the answer has been here for over 30 years. The answer to true physical fitness is portable fitness equipment from the Monkey Bar Gym! Portable fitness equipment has evolved from the light resistance bands and ankle weights they use in aerobic classes. Today portable fitness equipment is literally all you need to get into the greatest shape of your life. Whether your goal is basic overall fitness, strength, conditioning OR high level sports performance you can get it all with portable fitness equipment.

How do I know this? It is all I have ever done and all that my dad Bobby Hinds has ever done. My Dad started the beginnings of portable fitness equipment with the beaded jump rope and training program in 1973, which sparked the Jump Rope for Heart program. He followed it up in 1976 with the first ever Portable Gym. Back in the day people thought my dad was crazy…still do , but he was way ahead of his time. He saw a huge need for people to stay in shape while on the road, traveling, working out at home or outside. He knew that not everyone wanted to workout on machines, or had the money, time or drive to workout in a gym or inside for that matter. So, he took it upon himself to change it and the fitness world has never been the same.

Today, portable fitness equipment can do everything you desire in your fitness training: YOU CAN get stronger, leaner, improve athletic performance, heal & prevent injuries, increase movement skills, spend little money and train anywhere you want, anytime you want!!! Portable fitness equipment can also allow you to follow an online training program, almost like having your own personal trainer! Because of all of these tremendous benefits, portable fitness equipment is a common term in the fitness industry. I feel my Dad and his company, Lifeline USA, are a huge reason for portable fitness equipment being such an integral part of the fitness industry today. I have always believed in portable fitness equipment, so much that I opened up my Monkey Bar Gymnasium in 2001. It is the first hard core strength and conditioning training facility in the country that uses ONLY portable fitness equipment!

“Full body anywhere, anytime training is all we do and all we’ve ever done” says Monkey Bar Gymnasium, Certified Natural Trainer, Jessica Rucker. “We teach movement mastery first and then add resistance via portable fitness equipment. Using Resistance cables, Kettlebells, Jungle Gyms, Med & D-balls, Jump Ropes, Power Push ups, Power Jumpers, Vertical Jumpers and Power Wheels all add more challenge to basic bodyweight movements, thus taking them to the next level. It’s clearly the main reason everyone who trains with us either online or at the Monkey Bar Gymnasium is incredibly fit”.

So what exactly is portable fitness equipment? Any piece of exercise equipment that you can easily pack and take anywhere in the world and get a tremendous workout. That is why my dad’s first Portable Gym’s tag line was “a gym in a bag”. Portable fitness equipment gives you a great workout, not just an okay one.

IT WORKS!! A workout with really good portable fitness equipment improves your strength (functional muscle), conditioning (leaner body), sports performance, agility, mobility, stability, strength and power. Want proof, At the Monkey Bar Gymnasium we AVERAGE 17 lbs of fat loss and 5.4 lbs of muscle gain over the first 60 days of training…did I mention, only using portable fitness equipment!

More Proof. On a recent road trip, Jessica and I brought along all of our favorite Portable Fitness Equipment, a Power Push Up, Jungle Gym, TNT Cable, Power Wheel, Power Jump Rope and even the new Lifeline Kettlebell. Yes, the Lifeline Kettlebell. This may not be a true piece of portable fitness equipment, but it is a heavier version, it still is portable and definitely is fitness equipment. On our road trip we really put all of the portable fitness equipment to the test.

Could we drive more than 3,000 miles & get great workouts at the same time? The answer was definitely YES!!Every hour we drove, we stopped and did a killer set with each piece of equipment. One hour we did a set of squat presses with the TNT Cable, the next hour a killer set of chins and rows with the Jungle Gym, the next hour 100 doubles jumping rope as fast as possible, the next hour 40 snatches each arm with the Lifeline Kettlebell. Honestly, it was amazing! Each set only took us 3 minutes! When we would get back in the car we felt incredible! We were totally energized and ready to go and looked forward to the next hour and what we would do. By the end of the day, we had without question, gotten a heck of a workout and we were both tired but very satisfied in knowing that we not only can do these workouts anywhere at anytime, but that working out with Portable Fitness Equipment is the best way to attain ultimate fitness.

The World is your Playground” workout anywhere / anytime (AA), indoors or outside!!!

Lets lay out a Backpack of Portable Fitness Equipment for you to workout AA!!

1) Jungle Gym: Pure bodyweight training: chin ups (assisted to kip ups), push ups, dips, rows, flys, assisting pistols /1 leg squats, leg curls, runners, core rollouts and lots more. One piece of equipment that can do full body training for strength & conditioning! Weight about 1.5 lbs, fits in pocket.

2) TNT Cable: Pure resistance training: squats, full extensions, cable cleans, presses, Russian twists, diagonal chops & lifts, resisted running & backpedaling, 1 arm punches, rows and lots more. Weight about 1 lb., fits in large pocket.

3) Power Jump Rope: Pure conditioning training: probably the single best tool for overall full body conditioning. Weight 1.5 lbs, fits in pocket.

We put them all together in the Portable Monkey Bar Gym. It even includes a comprehensive training DVD.

Add more fun to your BackPack with the following:

The Power Push up: Voted Best piece of exercise equipment by Mens Fitness. Can adjust from 20 to 270 lbs of resistance for your push ups. Weight 2.5 lbs., fits in backpack easily.

The Power Jumper: The Best Jump Training device on the market…and it’s portable! Get the Jump Training DVD, it’s great. You can do all lower body exercises with it too. Athletes average 6-8″ improvements over 12 weeks of training. Weight 2.5 lbs, fits in backpack too.

A Note on the Resistance Cables – 3 big points:

1) Non-Fixed ranges of motion – meaning you must react and balance the resistance, this improves motor function and performance greatly.

2) Progressive variable resistance – as cables lengthen they increase in resistance, creating an excellent balance as your leverage becomes greater, it becomes greater!

3) Adjustable resistance – in seconds you can lighten or increase the resistance. This means you can match bodyweight movements with precision resistance, can load or resist up to max loads thus giving covering all levels of strength training from endurance to power.

In general portable fitness equipment is in a league of its own. It’s accessible, light weight and convenient but yet can generate max resistance loads if needed or maximum challenge of exercise if needed, it literally can do it all!! With portable fitness equipment you never need to stop your workouts because of business trips or vacations and working out at home with $1,000.00’s of dollars of bulky equipment has become a thing of the past. Compare that with a mere $100 or so for all of the above listed portable fitness equipment. You can use portable fitness equipment to perform online training with any of the great sites out there, and achieve incredible results!

Commitment To A Successful Fitness Training Program

The undertaking of any fitness training program requires that individuals not only have a realistic view of their own personal fitness goals, but that they also consider the variables they may be faced with in accomplishing their objective for better health and wellness.

Choosing the right fitness training program is not the only important step of getting in shape – you must also construct your plan realistically so that you can stay fully committed. Anyone can begin a fitness training program after getting clearance from his or her physician, and there are thousands of different programs on the market today; however, the real trick comes in knowing how to achieve the personal fitness goals you have set forth.

Determining Your Own Personal Fitness Goals

Most people have a skewed idea of what fitness is exactly. Ask anyone, and they’ll most likely envision a skinny model-like woman or a huge man that seems like he just stepped off the stage of a body-building competition. You, too, might think this, but personal physical fitness is something much more specialized and unique. This is where commitment comes into play. When most people think of the term “fitness,” it has a broad range of definitions that each of us can apply to our own abilities. Fitness generally has nothing to do with your general weight or body shape. If you eat right and work out regularly, sticking to your individual fitness training program, odds are that you’re on the right path.

The completion of personal fitness goals is controlled entirely by the mind. You have to want to get in shape. If your mind is not truly committed to the final outcome, your goals will never be met even under the best of circumstances or any obstacles that may impede the process. You, and only you, can control your commitment to fitness and ensure that you meet your personal fitness goals.

How to Stay Committed

The biggest challenge of a fitness training program or plan is teaching yourself to stay committed – the fact is that most plans fail because there is an overall lack of drive or inspiration to meet those individualized personal fitness goals. Luckily, you have a few options if you find it impossible to stick to your diet and workout plan. Most people talk about finding or using an exercise buddy, but never actually seek one out. Try finding someone at your gym or fitness center with a similar schedule or convince a friend or colleague to join you on your quest for fitness.

Another good way to keep focus is to promise yourself a reward if you meet your personal fitness goals. If you’ve always wanted a pretty piece of jewelry or a new television set, save up during your commitment challenge and splurge once you’ve met your planned goal. Promising yourself a reward will help you keep your eyes on something you want.

What If Your Fitness Goals Aren’t Met?

When personal fitness goals are not met, disillusion and despair begin to set in, and the whole venture seems worthless. You must ultimately revisit your commitment to the fitness training program and process and take a long, hard look at all of the factors that are hindering your program. You might find that your level of commitment was lacking; for instance, knowing when you should have rested more, eaten better and more frequently, or perhaps even turned down that additional serving of alcohol or dessert. Some people might dismiss willpower as just a personality trait, but everyone has the ability to resist.

Once you re-examine the flaws of your fitness training program, you’ll understand why you’re not achieving the personal fitness goals you created. However, you must remember to make goals that are attainable and realistic, and this is where many people slip up in planning an effective fitness training program. Research acceptable weight loss or gain, find cookbooks meant for your diet, and set your schedule for workout times that are manageable.

The Bottom Line

Making your fitness training program fully attainable is the biggest part of ensuring commitment. Without realistic personal fitness goals, it is highly doubtful that you will succeed. Examine your routine as it is now and slowly work the new regime into your lifestyle. Once you start your fitness plan and get used to the motions, it soon becomes second nature to live a healthy lifestyle.

The bottom line is determining if you are really committed to this fitness venture. If you see getting in shape as just another item in a long list that may or may not be completed, this is probably not the right time to start your fitness training program. Look inside yourself and see if you have what it takes to make this goal a reality.

Final Word On Fitness For Women

When women are looking for a fitness program you know they’re not just looking to ‘get fit’. Anyone who understands women knows that they always have more than one reason for doing anything!

As women we want to get fit, but we also want to: lose weight, halt the effects of aging, improve our tone, improve our flexibility, look younger, be more attractive to the opposite sex and even more importantly help us look attractive enough to pass inspection by other women.

Know Why You Want to Be Fit and Make Goals

Before you start any fitness program you have to really decide that your goals are important enough to keep you motivated and overcome all the excuses you used in the past. Your fitness program must become one of those things that you do without question, like eating or brushing your teeth. Unless you are convinced of the benefits of your fitness program and that you want it enough to stay focused, and then want to avoid the risks you’ll face if you don’t use your fitness program properly, you won’t have any success.

Regardless if you feel that you are in good health or not, you should always see your physician before beginning any fitness program. A good fitness program will provide for vigorous exercise but involves minimal health risks for you if you are in good health or following a doctor’s advice.

A woman fitness program for your unique needs and wants will enable you to perform up to your true potential. A specific fitness program written for you will help you look, feel and do your best.
It will also give you the ability to perform daily tasks vigorously and alertly, with energy left over for enjoying leisure-time activities after you’ve finished with your daily fitness program.

As you start your exercise routine, it’s important to remember that fitness is an individual quality that varies from person to person. It is influenced by age, sex, heredity, personal habits, exercise and eating practices, so if you have someone you admire who is really fit and want to be like, make sure it is someone who is most like you, just like comparing apples with apples.

A good woman fitness program will help you to determine how often, how long and how hard you exercise and what kinds of exercises you do should be determined by what you are trying to accomplish. So decide beforehand what it is you most want out of your program, when your trainer is writing you program this is one of the first questions you will be asked.

What you do during your actual exercise sessions will also depend on your specific goals, your current fitness level, age, health, etc. However, don’t try to do too much too soon and don’t quit before you have a chance to experience the rewards. You can’t regain in a few days or weeks what you have lost in years of sedentary living, but you can get it back if you are consistent. Remember take baby steps and you will avoid ‘burning out’ before you really get going.

A Good Fitness Program Should Provide You With…

The following health benefits:

  • Increased efficiency of heart and lungs;
  • Reduced cholesterol and triglyceride levels;
  • Increase and maintain bone density to prevent osteoporosis;
  • Reduced blood pressure;
  • A reduced risk of cancer, including colon cancer, stroke, diabetes, heart attack, heart disease, and many other diseases and ailments;
  • An improved sense of wellbeing;
  • More energy;
  • Less stress;
  • An improved quality of sleep;
  • Reduced stress levels;
  • Improve your sexual performance and restore libido.

Did you know that to lose ½ kilogram of body fat each week through exercise, we need to burn off approximately 2,500 kilojoules (600 calories) extra each day? Based on this figure, the answer to how much exercise is easy: that amount of exercise which burns an extra 2,500 kilojoules (kJ) per day, or 16,000kJ per week.

So this means that the amount of exercise needed for a 100kg person (the amount of energy burned during exercise varies depending upon the body weight of the exerciser) to burn the total 16,000kJ per week equate to:

  • Approximately 10 hours of walking at 5kph (3mph) per week – or 90 minutes per day.
  • Approximately 4 hours of jogging at 10kph (6mph) per week – or 35 minutes per day.
  • Approximately 4½ hours of cycling at around 20kph (12mph) per week – or 40 minutes per day.

So, if the same 100kg person walked only three times a week for twenty minutes each time, they would only burn 1,500 kilojoules. That’s more than just a few short of the 16,000 needed isn’t it!
If you’re overweight, eating your usual amount of calories while increasing activity will see some good results, but eating fewer calories combined with good fitness program is even better.

Scientists have proven that calorie restricted diets extend life!**

It seems that when a woman limits her intake to 1000 calories a day and 1500 for a man they could extend their lives past 150 years and live well. According to this research the biomarkers of aging: cholesterol, fasting glucose and blood pressure can almost be reversed using this method. More scientific research is needed to qualify exactly why this seems to work and people are advised to take a cautious approach to strict dieting (especially with children and those with health challenges) , but the research is conclusive. (check it out for yourself online: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20746251/; or
http://www.the-scientist.com/news/home/37246/)

**Of course it goes without saying that we are not recommending you starve yourself, this is almost as bad as eating too much! And always consult your health professional first.

The only way you can increase your metabolism so your body burns more fat and have a nice firm, toned body is to use an good fitness program that includes variety and use that exercise routine consistently.
A lack of a consistent fitness program will cause your muscles to get soft, and if food intake is not decreased you will add body fat.

What Else Will A Good Fitness Program Do For Me?

  • Lose weight, easily & quickly – And Keep It Off!
  • Improve your appearance and self-esteem;
  • Tone & firm your muscles;
  • Improve your posture & relieve back, shoulder & neck pain;
  • Fit into the clothes you’ve always wanted to;
  • Enhance your social life;
  • Increased Stamina;
  • Be the envy of all your friends;
  • Have a lot more Free time to spend with family & friends;
  • Save a lot of money!

Thinking about starting a new diet and fitness program is much harder than actually doing it. But once you do get started with an effective fitness program you’ll love the changes you’ll make in your body and get addicted to feeling and looking good. The main thing is to think about it as a lifestyle change, more in keeping with the person you have always known you are, deep down inside.

Some Final Thoughts…

You need to understand that there are no magic tricks, no shortcuts and no other way to improve your health and the way you look but with dedication, consistency and an effective program. It is also important to remember that if you feel that it is all just a chore, you will more than likely give up. So make it fun, and change not just your fitness habits, but your life outlook to include health and vitality right at the top of your list of priorities.

Fitness Coach Vs Fitness Trainer

North America is getting fatter and fatter! There are numerous studies proven this so I won’t get into all the statistics from the American College of Sports Medicine, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as well as the American Heart Association. Just trust me…as a population we are getting fatter.

But wait; there are more fitness centers, gym, personal trainers and fitness related info-products then ever before…so how can this be?

Here a few things that we know:

  • A one-size-fits-all approach to fitness does not work
  • Knowing biomechanics is good but effective in developing a compete fitness program
  • Life stages and changes in a person’s life must be taken into account when developing a fitness program
  • Not all fades are created equal. To embrace the latest and greatest fade is very ineffective in making consistent fitness progress
  • The carrot or the stick? A positive approach works much better then a fear based approach, to anything, especially fitness
  • Social and domestic support is crucial for starting and continuing a fitness program
  • In the end, we need to embrace a holistic model of fitness, working on the body alone is not enough

So, where does this leave you?

If you are not getting the results your desire or if you’re not having fun with your fitness program it maybe time to take a look at fitness coaching. “But I already have a personal fitness trainer, why do I need a fitness coach?”

First, if you’re not getting the results it might not be your trainer, it could be you. I’m not saying it’s your directly at fault, but there maybe some underlying situations that you and your trainer are not aware of that a good certified fitness coach could help you discover and find a solution.

So what is fitness coaching?

It can be called an ongoing and guided conversation and process between you and a health fitness coach that is a conversation:

  • Involving a comprehensive fitness-related dialogue about your needs, interests and personal active lifestyle orientations
  • Directed toward broad based goals of personal and health gains that are
  • Attained through continued involvement in physically activates which are
  • Adjusted occasionally according to your evolving life agenda

I know, you’re probably saying “That sounds nice, but again, I have a personal trainer.”

What a personal trainer is trained and certified to do is develop the specific workout routine for you. They are to assess your currently physical abilities and limitations and develop a routine around these parameters along with your fitness goals. Then they are to ensure that you perform the routine with biometric perfection. That is want a fitness trainer is schooled and trained in. If they are performing more then this and are not properly trained and educated in that field, they are stepping out of the bounders of a trainer.

A fitness coach, through and open and ongoing dialogue, will help you

  • Determine the best physical activity for you
  • Stay on track and achieve your fitness goals
  • Work through any resistance or sticking points
  • With support for all parts of your life

Basically a fitness coach will help you develop your fitness strategy and stay on track with it and a fitness/personal trainer will help you develop the tactics to get you to your goal.

In this day and age we are all bombarded with so many distractions that we need to have a qualified support team around us so that we can achieve our goals with a much ‘ease’ as possible,. I believe that two key members on this team should be a fitness coach and fitness/personal trainer.

Tips For Getting Fitness at Home

A person is said to be physically fit if he or she is physically sound, healthy and he or she has the ability to perform physical activities well. Nowadays more than 60 % of people say that they don’t have enough time to running for an hour or hit the gym. But all these people want to be fit and get into better shape.

No doubt people all over the world are more and more health conscious, but most of them don’t know how actually complete fitness can be achieved. Although one can prepare his / her personal fitness plan provided some important tips and precautions have been taken into consideration, otherwise it can cause adverse effects.

Online books and videos about fitness training can be helpful to some extent but has the drawback of non confirmation that you are adopting them correctly.

If you can not visit gyms or health clubs and also are not able to make up your mind to rely upon books or videos, then the best option for you could be hiring a personal trainer for few days. Personal training sessions are very popular these days among people who want a focused fitness program designed for their individual needs and implementing it in the right direction at their own place.

You may hire a certified and professional personal fitness coach who can provide you fitness training sessions with a well organized fitness plan as per your age, sex, medical condition and your daily works schedule at your home or office.

Benefits of hiring a Personal Fitness Coach:

Diet plan – Personal fitness coach prepare daily diet plan in which he / she decides that what are your calorie requirements and how can you get it perfectly. Fitness trainer know very well that according to trainee’s age, height, weight and medical condition what calories requires to get high fitness results.

Fitness training sessions – On the basis of trainee’s age, sex, weight, height and medical condition fitness instructor prepares the physical exercise session plan in which he or she decides what type of exercise is required for trainee and which exercise a trainee should do first and for how many times. Fitness coach divides the whole fitness programs in different small sessions and set the priorities and time of exercise according to particular fitness trainee. This training program you can further continue by yourself at your home.

Exercise Equipments– Personal fitness trainer generally bring fitness equipments needed for exercising and also can guide you what kind of equipments you should use to carry on with your fitness program.

Physical and Mental fitness– Perfect physical fitness is directly correlated to mental fitness. A certified fitness trainer trains you to develop a positive attitude and motivates you for exercising so that you lead a healthy life.

Physical Fitness for you

Physical fitness is to the human body what fine-tuning is to an engine. It is not a race, it’s a pursuit. In its most general meaning, physical fitness is a general state of good physical health. It is a foundation for a long and successful life.

Physical fitness is usually measured by periodic tests measuring strength, endurance, agility, coordination, and flexibility. Physical fitness is the capacity of the heart, blood vessels, lungs, and muscles to function at optimum efficiency.

It has two meanings — General fitness (a state of health and well-being) and specific fitness (the ability to perform specific aspects of sports or occupations). Physical Fitness is important, even on bed rest.

A general-purpose physical fitness program must address the following essentials:

Cardiovascular Fitness: It is the ability of the circulatory and respiratory systems to supply oxygen to muscles during continuing physical activity.

Regular exercises enable more blood to be pumped with each stroke of heart.

Flexibility Training: Stretching increases the range of motion of a joint. It improves suppleness.

Strength Training: Strength training is the use of resistance to muscular contraction to build the strength, and size of skeletal muscles.

Muscular Endurance: Endurance is the ability to exert for a long period of time. In humans, it is usually used in aerobic or anaerobic exercise.

Body Composition: In physical fitness, body composition is used to describe the percentages of fat, bone and muscle in human bodies.

Fitness

Fitness, most importantly cardio-respiratory fitness, has been directly correlated to the mortality rate. Fitness can be described as a condition that helps us look, feel, and do our best.

In previous years, fitness was commonly defined as the capacity to carry out the day’s activities without undue fatigue. These days, physical fitness is considered a measure of the body’s ability to function efficiently and effectively in work and leisure activities, to be healthy, to resist diseases, and to meet emergency situations.

Many sources also cite mental and emotional health as an important part of overall fitness. This is often presented in textbooks as a triangle made up of three sub-sections, which represent physical, emotional, and mental fitness.

Physical fitness involves the performance of the heart, lungs, and muscles. And, since what we do with our bodies also affects what we can do with our minds, fitness influences to some degree qualities such as mental alertness and emotional stability.

People normally prefer walking for fitness activities followed in order by: swimming, fishing, bicycle riding, camping, golf, bowling, exercise equipment, hiking, hunting, aerobics, calisthenics, jogging, and tennis. Women prefer fitness-related indoor activities and men prefer outdoor sports.

The top level of physical fitness tends to mesh physiology and psychology. The exercises improve function of the muscular and skeletal systems, enhance circulation, augment energy and elevate overall individual levels of fitness. The level of physical fitness can be influenced by regular, systematic exercise.

As energy depends on nutrition, proper nutrition is important to physical fitness. If diet is not adequate, the fitness level will drop. Overweight, underweight, and weak individuals will have below average fitness levels.

Exercises

Exercise that doesn’t raise your heart rate to a certain level and keep it there for 20 minutes won’t contribute significantly to cardiovascular fitness. It is better to select exercises that involve total body involvement.

Such exercises improve and maintain fitness most effectively — e.g. Running, swimming, golf, dancing, cycling, and brisk walking. The correct exercises will help you decrease body fat and increase or maintain muscle mass.

By performing many different exercises for a low number of repetitions, the muscles are strengthened, elongated and toned without creating bulk. Total concentration on the body during each exercise emphasizes movement quality, coordination and breath.

Health

Healthy people have more active and more interesting life. Physical fitness can also prevent or treat many chronic health conditions brought on by unhealthy lifestyle or aging.

To stay healthy it’s important to participate in physical activity. Even those of us who haven’t always led active lifestyles, increasing our physical activity now will help us live longer & healthier lives.

To live a full and healthy life, exercise must be a part of it. It is the ability to endure, to bear up, to withstand stress, to carry on in circumstances where an unfit person could not continue, and it is a major basis for good health and well-being. A physically fit body has less chance of acute health problems and chronic disease.