Cardio for Scoliosis

Scoliosis is defined as a sideways curving of the spine. A normal spine curves inward in the lumbar region and outward in the thoracic region in the mid-back. When the curvature begins to develop laterally, it can affect muscles, nerves, other bones and even organs.

The most noticeable symptoms of scoliosis are: 1) shoulders and/or pelvis of uneven height and 2) one shoulder that sticks out more than the other. The possible complications of scoliosis are varied, but not severe in a vast majority of cases. As the spine bends sideways, vertebrae become tilted at the bends and the discs in between them experience uneven pressure. This leaves people with scoliosis susceptible to early disc degeneration. Some people may have mild breathing complications, since a curve in the thoracic spine affects the positioning of the ribs.

Many people do not experience muscular pain due to scoliosis, since the condition develops in childhood and the body grows to adapt to it. Disc-related pain is the greatest concern for people with scoliosis who wish to maintain a high level of activity.

Cardiovascular exercise is an essential component of a healthy life. Keeping the heart and lungs in peak physical condition allows large volumes of oxygen-rich blood to flow to the body’s tissues, keeping them healthy and strong. People with scoliosis may find this type of exercise difficult, since the spine is a high-impact area.

Common forms of cardio, such as running and cycling, may be painful for those with scoliosis. When running, the body transfers forces to the ground, which reciprocates a force on the body. The spine experiences a significant amount of compression while running, which could be harmful to those with angled vertebrae. The same occurs when cycling; every irregularity in the ground jolts the spine.

Cardio exercise is not outside the realm of possibility for those with scoliosis. Since the curved spine is sensitive to jolting, forms of exercise that keep the heart rate up without loading the spine are ideal. The following are considered safe scoliosis cardio exercises:

1. Water Aerobics: Exercising in water is ideal for anyone with back pain and spinal problems; the water takes the weight of your body, leaving your spine unburdened. It is also ideal for both strength-building and cardiovascular training, since the density of the water resists your body’s movement. This keeps your muscles, heart and lungs working hard. Swimming is the most common water exercise, but water aerobics classes offer more varied workouts.

2. Elliptical Training: Elliptical machines provide the benefits of running without the jarring effects. This machine allows you to glide rather than run, leaving your spine unburdened.

3. Stair Machines: These machines allow you to step as if walking up stairs, but with less force being transferred through your feet to the rest of your body.

4. Walking: This low-intensity exercise is ideal for those wishing to maintain a healthy body. It may not satisfy those looking for an intense workout, however.

If any of the above cause you pain, you may simply be pushing yourself too hard. Start slow and work your way up to more intense workouts. Cardio is essential for those with scoliosis. Knowing which exercises will benefit and which will harm you is the one of the most important components of back pain management. See http://www.livestrong.com/article/394848-taboo-exercises-for-scoliosis/ for a list of exercises to avoid.

HIIT Cardio Versus Fartlek Training

HIIT cardio is the new craze sweeping across gymnasiums in Europe and North America – the reason for this… it’s fast, efficient and it works!

High intensity interval training is something that athletes and runners in particular have been well aware of for a long time now. Fartlek training, translated from Swedish is ‘speed play’ and this has been a popular method of fitness training for runners for a long time and one method that has been shown to burn more fat than steady paced running. Fartlek training mixes slow paced running with high paced intervals of running, one example that most people who have ever played Football will be familiar with is jogging the length of the pitch, sprinting the width, jogging the length and then sprinting the width again.

Although Fartlek training is still a great method of physical training, the Tabatha protocol of HIIT shone a light on the possibility of condensing a workout dramatically without taking away any of the benefits. The problem with the Tabatha protocol of high intensity interval training is that it sounds false; no one ever really believes that a 4 minute workout can strip fat and although the 8 circuits that compromise the Tabatha method are extremely difficult, athletes often tend to feel they have cheated themselves leaving the gym after 4 minutes. On way in which body builders chose to incorporate the Tabatha protocol of HIIT Cardio to their sessions was to blast one 4 minutes session either side of the normal body building routine. This tends to be a very popular way of using HIIT without feeling you have cheated yourself.

The Tabatha protocol will work for anyone using it. What we all have to keep in mind is that time spent in the gym is not in direct correlation to results gained in the gym. Always keep in mind the famous saying ‘you can train hard or you can train long, you can’t do both’. A great example of this is the direct comparison of the traditional one hour treadmill session for fat burning at a slow steady pace versus the very popular and newly found 30 sets in 20 minutes Kettlebell Workouts. Studies show that not only are more calories burnt in the actual training session of the shorter period of activity, but participants display greater muscular definition, lower body fat and far greater fitness levels. This is just one way in which training harder for shorter periods of time is proven to be more beneficial.

Often you will hear about Boxers overtraining for a fight and not feeling fresh when the big night arrives which can have devastating effects, think of Amir Khan in his most recent outing against Danny Garcia. He was originally primed to a fight a few months earlier before Lamont Peterson was banned for taking illegal substances. After being stopped in 4 rounds only a couple of months after peaking for a fight that never happened, a lot of pundits and coaches around the world attributed this to over training. There are others such as the never outspoken Chris Eubank Senior who claims over training is a myth and a state of mind and it is more about becoming stale when training which the biggest worry is. Whilst this may be the case with Boxers, there is a lot of scientific evidence in body building as to how overtraining can halt results altogether. For instance studies have shown time and time again that Bicep progress is halted by over training and in fact as soon as the Bicep is over worked the muscle shuts down and no growth or repair will occur. In addition to this, often the best way to get over a training Plateau (a stage when progress as halted) the best way to get past this is take one week of the Gym allowing all the muscles and joints to recover. After doing this, most people find that they can instantly lift more weight than one week previous when they were stuck lifting a certain weight.

HIIT Training seems to answer most if not all of the problems associated with physical training; it keeps you fresh in body and mind. It combats injury and overtraining problems and is a tremendous fat burner and a great way to increase your physical fitness.

High School Wrestling: Cardio Options for Conditioning

Is wrestling a six minute match similar to running a marathon? No. Is wrestling a six minute match similar to running a 5K? No, again. Sometimes wrestlers do a lot of running to condition themselves for wrestling only to find themselves “gassed” before the match is even half over. So, what is a wrestler to do? I will discuss some cardio options in regards to wrestling conditioning.

First, wrestling is primarily an anaerobic sport. Anaerobic means “without oxygen.” Wrestling relies mostly on the ATP-PC and Glycolytic energy systems. The ATP-PC energy system supplies energy for up to approximately ten seconds of exercise. Imagine a track athlete sprinting for 100 meters. The Glycolytic energy system supplies energy for exercise lasting from approximately ten seconds to two minutes. Imagine a wrestling match where you control your opponent for a while and then explosively shoot for a takedown. There are several explosive bursts in a wrestling match. Wrestling is virtually 100%anaerobic exercise. In contrast, running a marathon is approximately 98%aerobic exercise. So, why train like a marathon runner if you’re a wrestler?

Some trainers believe that LSD (long, slow distance running) builds an aerobic base. Aerobic base training is believed to enhance the anaerobic work that will follow later on in the conditioning program. Other trainers dispute this notion. Some trainers believe that steady state cardio like jogging can clear the body of waste products and speed recovery after intense strength training. Other trainers dispute this notion as well. Trainers that don’t favor steady state cardio usually favor some type of HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training). HIIT usually involves periods of high intensity activity alternating with periods of lower intensity activity. For instance, one might alternate sprinting for thirty seconds and jogging for thirty seconds for a designated period of time.

Some Potential Benefits of Steady State Cardio:

  • Build an aerobic base which will enhance your anaerobic exercise later on
  • Increase your work capacity (i.e. build a bigger gas tank, as Matt Wiggins would say)
  • Removal of waste products from the body after intense strength training
  • Speed recovery after intense strength training

Some Potential Drawbacks of Steady State Cardio:

  • Steady state cardio trains slow-twitch muscle fibers (as a wrestler you want more fast twitch muscle fibers that are responsible for strength, power and speed)
  • Increased cortisol production which may cause muscle loss
  • Overuse injuries (e.g. to your knees)
  • Can be time consuming

Some Potential Benefits of HIIT:

  • Tends to develop fast-twitch muscle fibers
  • Anaerobic training can develop aerobicand anaerobic capabilities
  • Shorter duration/less time consuming

Some Potential Drawbacks of HIIT:

  • May lead to CNS burnout (i.e. overtraining)
  • May lead to an excess of anaerobic work if you’re also strength training and doing a lot of hard wrestling (again leading to overtraining)

Types of Cardio to Consider:

  • Steady State or LSD (long, slow distance)
  • HIIT
  • Tabatas (another form of HIIT that has become very popular)
  • HOC (i.e. High Octane Cardio–combining running with bodyweight or dumbbell exercises)
  • Sprints
  • Hill Sprints
  • Circuit Training (e.g. Working Class Cardio by Matt Wiggins–no running involved)

Points to Consider:

  • Trainer Ian King has had success with athletes in which he dropped cardio conditioning from their training entirely
  • When Dr. Fred Hatfield was put in charge of boxer Evander Holyfield’s physical conditioning prior to his fight with Buster Douglas in 1990, he dropped all roadwork (long, slow distance running) from Evander’s conditioning program
  • Wrestling is primarily an anaerobic (i.e. without oxygen) sport
  • Steady state cardio may be good for recovery
  • Steady state cardio may be good if you are “out of shape”
  • If you are strength training and wrestling hard in practice, then don’t overdo interval training
  • Steady state cardio may help increase your work capacity (i.e. build a bigger gas tank)

As you can see, cardiovascular training for wrestling is complicated. You may want to do some longer running in the off season and switch to interval training when the season begins. Educate yourself about the different cardio conditioning options available to you.

Let me leave you with a reminder–a wrestling match is not like running a marathon.

Bootcamp Ideas for Personal Trainers Starting a Business

With bootcamp businesses becoming more popular these days many personal trainers are looking for bootcamp ideas to start up their own bootcamp business. They are tired of paying a portion of their personal training profits to the gym for using their facilities for training sessions. With bootcamp training sessions they can provide their services to more clients at a time and make more money even if they are charging less.

If you live in a warm climate your bootcamp business won’t cost you much to start-up or run. Many trainers will use their local park to run their bootcamps as they are usually free and people would rather be outside getting fresh air. They have a large amount of flexibility as they are available anytime you chose to use them. The only downside is that people may decide to follow your bootcamp from a distance and not pay the fees or another personal trainer may be spying on what you do for your bootcamp to copy you.

Here are some bootcamp ideas for the types of bootcamps you could have:

  • All female – Women only bootcamp. Many women feel more confident when they aren’t working out around men.
  • All male – Men only, increased intensity for muscle building.
  • Bridal bootcamp – Brides to be and their bridesmaids working out together.
  • Mom and baby – Many mothers want to get out of the house to workout and they can also make new friends for play dates.
  • Seniors bootcamp – Some older people will be discouraged from joining a regular bootcamp because they feel they can keep up with the younger crowd. They want to find people they have more in common with.
  • Singles only – This type of bootcamp is great for single people that want to get to the gym but want to get out and meet someone as well.
  • Couples only – This is a great way to get a workout with partner and meet other people with similar interests.
  • Pregnancy – A workout class for mothers to be focusing on exercises they can do even while they are pregnant.
  • Fat loss, muscle building, cardio, abs or any other fitness goals.
  • Kettlebell – Would require you or your clients to have a kettlebell. Great for fat burning.
  • Stability Ball – Stability ball exercises focusing on core strength.

As you can see there are many different bootcamp ideas you can come up with for the type of bootcamp to have. The best approach would be to involve your current personal training clients in your decision. Find out what kind of bootcamp they would like to join if they are interested in joining one.

Aerobic Exercise and the FITT Principle

Cardiorespiratory fitness best describes the health and function of the heart, lungs and circulatory system. Cardiorespiratory fitness also describes the capacity of the lungs to exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide with the blood, and the transportation of nutrients and waste products to and from the body’s active tissues. Other terms used and applied to the exercise environment are cardiovascular fitness, aerobic endurance and aerobic capacity. These terms are synonymous.

Cardiorespiratory exercise has proved to have many benefits, such as reducing cardiovascular disease by increasing fat utilization and therefore reducing obesity, and the reduction and management of hypertension and cholesterol. Other reported benefits include improved heart function and oxygen consumption, the ability to perform every day tasks more easily, decreased resting heart rate, body fat stores, anxiety and stress and management of diabetes.

A cardiorespiratory program needs to follow general guidelines to ensure maximum safety and effectiveness. These characteristics are essential for measurable improvements. We call this the FITT principle.

Frequency 3-5 times per week

Intensity 60-90% of predicted MHR

Time Duration 15-60 minutes of aerobic exercise

Type Activities; walking, cycling, jogging, swimming, roller blading, cross training, rowing etc.

Exercise FREQUENCY refers to the number of exercise sessions per week that are performed. The ACSM (American College of Sports Medicine) recommends 3-5 sessions per week to improve cardiorespiratory fitness and to achieve or maintain optimal body fat levels.

Exercise INTENSITY refers to the amount of effort you put into your training session. There are many methods for monitoring exercise intensity, some have been standardized, and are suitable for application to the general population and for those of different fitness levels.

Heart rate (MHR)

Rating of Perceived Exertion (RPE)

The ‘talk test’ method

Maximum Heart Rate (MHR) is determined by:

Men 220 – age

Women 226 – age

A 34 year old male, would therefore have a MHR of 186 beats per minute (bpm). Your exercise intensity is then put into the equation to give an exercise intensity that is specific to experience, fitness level, capabilities and relative to your fitness goals. Those just starting an exercise regime, or having a low level of fitness can benefit from intensities as low as 50-60% of MHR. Higher intensities as much as 90% of MHR are better suited to the more physically fit. As a general guideline, 60-80% of MHR is sufficient for the average population with no contra-indications to exercise.

RPE The ‘Rate of Perceived Exertion’ scale considers all factors that influence exercise intensity and how we perceive that exercise including fatigue and environmental conditions. A twenty-point scale has been devised that corresponds with Heart Rate intensities and allows the participant to determine their perceived effort. This method teaches us to listen to our bodies instead of ‘zoning out’ and can be used in conjunction with Heart Rate.

The ‘talk test’: This is an easy method that anyone can use. The talk test is based on the principle that if you cannot hold a regular conversation while exercising, your exercise intensity is too high. The intensity should however, be enough to increase core body temperature and promote perspiration.

Exercise TIME is the duration of the exercise and is dependent on the intensity of the session. The ACSM (American College of Sports Medicine) suggests a minimum of 15 minutes of continuous exercise to elicit any improvement in cardiorespiratory fitness. More deconditioned individuals may require multiple shorter sessions until they develop a base from which improvements in cardiorespiratory fitness can be made.

Your capabilities, interests, available time, equipment, facilities and personal goals determine exercise TYPE. The options are endless and can include any movement that uses large muscle groups, is continuous in nature (for a minimum of 15 minutes) and utilizes the aerobic energy system.

When beginning an exercise program, it is best to take a conservative approach and start at suggested minimums i.e. 3 times per week for 15-20 minutes at no more than 55-65% of MHR.

This intensity should be gradually increased over the forthcoming weeks and months to elicit changes and improvements in cardiorespiratory fitness and endurance.

The health professionals at Fitcorp Asia can design a program specific to your needs and goals, and help you reach your potential in health, mind and body.

Contact us at http://www.fitcorpasia.com or http://www.personaltrainingbangkok.com for more information.

Aerobic Or Anaerobic – Which Is Better?

Aerobic training is exercise that involves or improves oxygen consumption by the body. The word Aerobic means with oxygen. Along with using and improving the body’s oxygen consumption, aerobic training also increases the body’s ability to burn fatty acids during an exercise session. An example of an aerobic exercise session would be one that consists of a warm up, then a moderate level of exercise for an extended period of time that exercises the large muscle groups, and is then followed by a cool down. No matter what the type of exercise, it is important to know that aerobic exercise is very beneficial from fat burning to cardiovascular health and wellness.

Anaerobic training involves exercise that is intense enough to trigger anaerobic metabolism. It greatly increases the body’s functional capacity for development of explosive strength and maximization of the short-term energy systems. An example would be non-endurance sports such as body builders using anaerobic training to promote speed, strength, power and muscle mass. This leads to greater performance in high intensity, short duration activities.

Several physiological responses the body will happen with aerobic training. A person’s aerobic capacity will be higher. There will be an increase in trained muscle capacity which is from the capacity to utilize and mobilize fat that is resulting from high amounts of fat metabolizing enzymes as well as increased blood flow. The body also experiences greater development of slow twitch muscle fibers, increased myoglobin content which is essentially an iron-protein compound inside muscle that acts to store and transport oxygen to the muscle. Aerobic exercise improves the body’s use of oxygen, thus increasing the ability to store it and transport it, which results in greater slow muscle twitch fibers.

A number of physiological changes exist with anaerobic training as well, and will show the large difference between the two and what benefit each one is. Anaerobic training increases the size of the fast twitch muscle fibers vs the slow twitch. Creates an increased tolerance to higher levels of blood lactate as well as increases enzymes involved in the anaerobic phase of glucose breakdown. Anaerobic training also produces increase resting levels of ATP, CP, creatine and glycogen content. High intensity weight training in sessions of 45-75 minutes will cause increased growth hormone and testosterone levels.

Because aerobic and anaerobic training focuses on very different results on the body, it is easy to assume there are many different adaptations the body must make if one were to choose to only exclusively train aerobic or anaerobic.

If one were to choose to do only aerobic training for over one year, you would see increased overall cardiovascular health. The body would adapt to using fatty acids for energy and would target the development of slow twitch muscle fibers. Those who choose to train aerobically are your typical 5k, 10k and marathon runners. Aerobic training will create endurance and those who train aerobically will be able to maintain exercise at a certain level for a longer period of time. What the body will not experience is a gain in overall strength. Aerobic training will not give a person gains in overall strength, power or explosive strength abilities. The body after a year has conditioned itself to utilize oxygen, burn fatty acids, and be an endurance machine. After a year, it would be hard for the person to attempt to try anaerobic training such as weight lifting. However, it can be done with the change of one’s fitness goals and training.

If someone were to choose to do anaerobic training for over a year, the body would adapt to using glycogen as fuel instead of the fatty acids used in aerobic training. The body will use the training to develop fast twitch muscle fibers versus slow, as well as build muscle mass, explosive strength and overall power. The choice to use anaerobic training would allow muscle growth and fitness, but not overall cardiovascular health and no endurance. Body builders are your typical anaerobic training clientele. They have tremendous explosive strength and their bodies have adapted to a large amount of strength for a short period of time versus endurance strength over a long period of time. Many body builders use anaerobic training and no aerobic training and thus it’s not uncommon to see an extremely fit body builder who cannot run/walk/jog for even ¼ mile as they have not had any aerobic training to build their cardiovascular health and endurance abilities.

VO2 Max: A Measure of Cardio Respiratory Fitness

Introduction

Assessment of cardiorespiratory fitness is important for both athletes as well as the members of the general population. In athletes for apparent reasons. While in general population, VO2 max can be used to predict subsequent development of cardiovascular disease. Thus, VO2 max studies can be used for prevention, both primary as well as secondary, of development of cardiovascular sequelae like angina pectoris or myocardial infarction.

Furthermore, since cardiorespiratory fitness has been linked decisively to early deaths from a variety of causes, VO2 max studies in general population assume immense significance.

So what exactly is VO2 max? Well, in literal terms, it is the volume (V) of oxygen (O2) during maximum exercise that your body is able to transfer. As we all know, during exercise, your body needs energy and the chemical reaction to produce energy require oxygen (especially aerobic exercises). Thus, the higher your VO2 max,the more your body can transport oxygen effectively during times of intense training. Therefore, you will be able to train longer at higher intensity levels.

Methods of Assessing VO2 max

VO2 max can be measured using either maximal or sub maximal exercise testing protocols. Maximum exercise testing involves pushing the subject to the limit of intense physical exercise. So much so, that immediate medical attention is usually required. Maximal exercise testing is a true reflection of VO2 max. However, for obvious reasons, this method is best avoided, at least in the general population. Most authorities recommend the submaximal method (using submaximal loads of exercise intensity). Once the values are obtained using this method, regression equations are used to predict the actual VO2 max.

Whereas, maximal exercise testing is more sensitive, submaximal exercise testing is safer, esp. when implemented in members of the population who are not accustomed to training.

Maximal Exercise Testing:

Maximal exercise testing requires trained individuals and sophisticated equipment. Therefore, it is used only in certain clinical settings.

Submaximal Exercise Tests

Astrand and Rhyming Step Test: This test is carried out using a 33cm step/ aerobic bench for women and 40cm step for men. It involves stepping up and down the step or bench at the rate of 22.5 per min. ECG and steady state heart rate readings are taken. It would require 25.8 and 29.5 mL/Kg/min of oxygen uptake for women and men respectively.

YMCA step test and The Canadian Home Fitness Test can also be used for submaximal exercise testing. The step tests are popular because of use of minimal equipment and ease of implementation. Another major advantage is the minimal cost as well as the fact that large number of subjects can be tested at the same time as shown by The Canadian Home Fitness Test.

3 min. YMCA Step Test: This test determines how quickly your heart rate returns to normal after a bout of exercise. It uses a 12 inch aerobic bench. The subject steps onto the bench with a rate of 24 per minute (estimated oxygen uptake of 25.8 mL/Kg/Min.). After 3 min., the subject immediately sits down and the HR is counted for a minute. It is crucial that the HR is counted starting within 5 sec of stopping the exercise. The obtained HR values are then used to compare against established norms.

Treadmill Tests: A minimal of 3 min. treadmill test using 70% of heart rate reserve or and 85% of maximal heart rate as the end point of test is a better predictor of VO2 max than the step tests. Pretty much like in the step tests, achieving a steady state heart rate is imperative to get accurate data. Thus, the need to carry out the test for a minimum of 3min. Variety of treadmill test protocols are used: Bruce Protocol being the most popular of all.

Cycle Ergometer Tests

Astrand-Rhyming Cycle Ergometer Test: This is a 6 minute single stage test. The subject pedals at a rate of 50rpm to achieve a HR between 125 and 170 beats/min. HR should be measured during the 5th and 6th minute of the test. An average of 2 or more HR reading is taken and used to estimate VO2 max from Modified Astrand-Rhyming Normogram.

Other test like Maritz Test use a multi-stage cycle ergometer test to determine VO2 max.

Conclusion

A plethora of tests for assessing aerobic capacity are available. This, however, makes the choice of test to be used a bit difficult. A lot, however, depends on the subject, his/her cardiorespiratory status as well as availability of equipment and trained personnel.

At the end of the day, designing and implementing a good fitness program, either as a preventive measure for a cardiovascular disease or to achieve fitness goals is equally, if not more, important.

How Water Aerobics Can Help With Fibromyalgia Condition

The physical condition fibromyalgia is typified by aches and pains in joints, tendons and muscles. This condition was believed to be psychological rather than physiological – it has now been established that significant chemical changes occur in fibromyalgia sufferers.

Fibromyalgia is not linked to injuries, disease or poor muscle repair ability of the body. Sufferers also do not face greater risk for types of musculoskeletal diseases – the precise cause of fibromyalgia is unknown but may be as a result of stress and pain levels seem to be more evident while resting than during periods of activity.

Exercise is an excellent way to decrease pain caused by fibromyalgia and in particular aerobics which helps reduce symptoms in sufferers while improving quality of life.

Aerobic activities increase pulse and respiratory rates – activities can be walking, cycling, running, and swimming however water aerobics seems to be more beneficial for fibromyalgia sufferers than other exercise types.

Aerobics increases muscle strength, decreases morning muscle stiffness, reduces potential injury risks, improves sleeping patterns and decreases pain.

Water aerobics appears to add more impact and value to exercise routines as it helps cushion the joints and muscles while supporting the body and increases resistance and workload required by the muscles to gain the desired effects, also promoting better balance, reducing pain perception and helping relaxation.

Any exercise program should be approved by a doctor who knows the specific needs and medical status of the person concerned. The services of a therapist or qualified instructor should be used initially and at a later stage it may be possible to continue alone with a program in a pool at home.

Begin slowly – 20 to 30 minute sessions twice or three times a week working towards sessions of 45 to 60 minutes. Be aware of any limitations and rest if fatigue is experienced during a workout by simply relaxing in the water – don’t ignore pain and always listen to what the body is saying.

Hydration is important while swimming or doing water aerobics – sweating goes by unnoticed in a pool and warmer pools will make a person sweat more – always remember to avoid dehydration.

Numerous studies have shown that fibromyalgia sufferers benefit emotionally and physically from water aerobics. Studies in Spain (2006) and Norway (2001) found that water aerobics improved patient’s emotional well being and physical functionality (beneficial in both short and long term programs).

Water aerobics will help fibromyalgia sufferers maintain better relationships with people they have contact with such as family, friends and employers as improved emotional and physical health makes it possible. Productivity at work also increases due to fewer sick days.

How Much Does P90x Cost?

The P90x workout DVDs It seems that a lot of people would like to try out this exercise program that promises amazing results in just 3 short months. Most buyers are drawn by the before and after photos that actual users have posted. Since they seem to prove that the system works, the next question would be: how much does the system cost Online, the product is very resonable and comparable to other products. What do you really get at this rate?

1. 10 Exercise DVDs: A single purchase includes a set of DVDs that feature workouts divided among several videos. Each video features an exercise routine that is specifically meant for a target group of muscles. The exercises are mostly made out of intense cardio routines that use the whole body, assuring you of a head – to – toe workout.

2. It’s like having a trainer in a box: invented by Tony Horton – the personal trainer to the stars, he incorporated certain aspects of his service to the package. Tony made sure that you get a guide that’s why the DVDs come with an excel sheet that shows your schedule and tracks your progress. For each day that a person performs, one or two exercise videos are assigned. They are arranged pursuant to Tony’s secret weapon – Muscle Confusion. According to his theory, human muscles get immune should you apply the same kind of exercise to it on a daily basis. Thus, the exercises are arranged to shock the system every once in a while – just when you’re starting to get comfortable. Is not made to get easy over time. They will continue to shock and challenge you.

3. Nutritional Guide: The set comes with a dietary plan that tells you what kind of food you can eat to compliment the workout you will be executing each day. Some days you will imbibe more protein, sometimes less. This varies based on the strength training you are expected to do that day. It will teach you to stay away from fatty foods and those that do nothing to burn the calories you have in your system.

4. After Sales Support: Not included in the package, but anyone can access the website. There you can expect to talk to a community of other people on the same exercise regimen as you are. They have the special light equipment that Tony and his team uses during the workouts, as well as a very responsive helpdesk to guide you through your journey.

Given all these inclusions, it seems as if the product is an amazing buy. But there are still warnings about the p90x workouts not being for everyone. Reviews will recommend beginners – or people who have little or no physical activity – to start with something lighter first before embarking on this one.

Should You Do Cardio Exercise Before or After Strength Training?

A question that I am often asked and one that I have seen countless times on message boards across the Internet is whether a person should do cardiovascular exercise before or after a resistance training workout? Before going any further, I want to clearly state that it is my position that everyone should engage in a cardiovascular exercise of their choice for 5 to 10 minutes prior to any workout, be it a cardiovascular, resistance or flexibility workout. This is vitally important for several reasons as a proper, light-intensity cardiovascular exercise will warm up the muscles, ligaments, joints and tendons that will be used more intensely in the following workout routine. Warming up with cardio also increases the core temperature slightly, increases circulation, slightly elevates the heart rate and helps to prepare the heart for an increased workload, it helps increase lung functioning and helps you to mentally focus in on the upcoming workout routine. The most important advantage to warming up with light intensity cardio is the substantial decrease in risk of injury. If the body is not properly warmed up, you are much more likely to experience an injury to a muscle, joint, ligament or tendon.

Now back to the question of whether you should do cardiovascular exercise prior to or after a resistance workout? There is no single best answer here and instead, you should evaluate your individual fitness goals. If you goal is to increase endurance, stamina or overall cardiovascular health, then I suggest doing your cardio workout prior to weight and resistance training. By doing the cardio workout first (after your 5 to 10 minute warm up of course), you are able to engage in a more intense cardio session, which possibly might include some intervals in which you really push up to your lactic acid threshold or VO2 max level. It is much less likely that you would be able to achieve high intensity cardiovascular work after you have engaged in a weight training session. So, in short if your goal is to increase cardiovascular fitness levels, you should perform cardio workouts prior to resistance training.

On the other hand, if your goal is fat and weight loss, a current mode of thinking in the fitness community is by doing a cardiovascular workout after a resistance workout, you increases the rate of fat metabolism (fat burn as it is often referred to as). The theory is that by engaging in an intense resistance workout, you will deplete the glycogen stores in the muscles during this workout. Once the glycogen stores are depleted, the body begins to utilize fats in the body for fuel. Endurance athletes have long know this, yet typically in order for this to occur in endurance training, an athlete has to continuously run for approximately 90 minutes to fully deplete the muscles of glycogen. Therefore, I remain somewhat skeptical that many average people working out are pushing themselves to the point of glycogen depletion during their resistance workout, particularly workouts of less than an hour in duration. For more advanced trainers, I do believe that it is possible and therefore can be an effective means of decreasing body fat perhaps for these individuals.

I tend to look at it like this, if you are engaging in a cardiovascular and resistance workout on the same day back-to-back, one or the other will be of a lesser intensity level naturally. Again, evaluate your personal fitness goals before deciding whether to do your cardio workouts before or after resistance training. If you are trying to build muscle, you want to have as much muscle strength as you can available for your resistance workouts, therefore doing cardio before weight training would be counterproductive to your muscle building goals. If you are looking to gain endurance or heart health, place your focus on the cardio workouts and do them first. Remember, regardless of which you end up doing first, it is more important to properly warm up with a minimum of 5 to 10 minutes of cardio (even if it is only a brisk walk on the treadmill) in order to prepare the body for the workouts ahead, to get your head in the right space in order to bang out a productive workout, and most importantly to decrease the risk of injury. This debate won’t mean a thing if you get injured 5 minutes into a workout and are sidelined for the next 8 weeks rehabilitating an injury!