Health & Fitness

11 Exercise Ideas For Women

0 Comments 23 July 2011

 

While you may be going totally gung-ho over your new exercise routine, meticulously sticking to your diet and exercise routine, reading up all you can and even enjoying yourself doing it all, it is important to know the difference between how much of what you read is hype and how much of it is the truth. So here are a few gospel dos and don’ts that you should hold sacred at every routine…

Do get crunching (your abs that is)

The abdominals are composed of four sheets of muscles that work cooperatively, so if you want to see results you have to strengthen all four muscles. The key is to isolate the stomach muscles and, using the right techniques, simultaneously strengthen your back for better balance and posture.

Don’t over-exercise

Walking too hard can lead to injuries. An exhausted mind and body weakens the immune system making it prone to infections, colds and the flu. In addition, technique and posture are poor in a tired body. For maximum benefit at minimum injury risk, the body needs to rest and recover. After a heavy muscle workout a 24-hour rest period is advisable.

Do lift weights

At age 35, you start losing a small amount of bone each year. When you lift weights, one increases one’s bone density and lean body mass. Do full body strength training at least twice a week.

Don’t get bored

After doing a particular routine like aerobics, gym every day for a number of years, it’s easy to lose motivation. Cross-training prevents boredom, develops new muscle groups and helps prevent injuries caused due to overuse of muscles.

Do str-r-r-r-retch

Stretch your big muscles — quadriceps, hamstrings, calves and back — before and after a workout. Stretching will result in better performance. Flexibility is one of the most important factors of fitness.

Don’t dehydrate yourself

When exercising, the body needs water every 20 minutes to replace water loss. Always avoid caffeine or alcohol when exercising, both of which further dehydrate the body.

Do warm-up and cool down

A low impact warm-up before any exercise routine is essential. It warms the muscles, makes them limber and easier to stretch, which results in a better workout. It also helps to prevent injury.

Cooling down after exercising is also important as it relaxes the muscles, lowers the heart rate, and helps the body to recover from the stress of a workout.

Don’t starve yourself

It’s important to determine a healthy weight and stay there, because studies show that people who repeatedly gain and lose a couple of kilograms have a higher risk of chronic illnesses like heart disease.

Do de-stress (establish anti-stress strategies)

It is important to have an outlet to de-stress and get away from the strains of modern living. Whether you jog, walk, meditate or do yoga, it’s important to find a way to slough off stress regularly.

Don’t push an injury

Listen to your body. If you feel pain, stop. Muscle and joint pain can mean many things — pushing a small hurt can lead to big problems later on. If pain persists more than a few days, see a doctor.

Do start gradually 

Any exercise programme should be structured, systematic and progressive. If you exercise too much, too fast and too hard — you are prone to injury. So build up from a moderate beginning.

Don’t ignore your footwear

Wearing appropriate footwear can significantly reduce the risk of injury. Find comfortable shoes, appropriate for your activity, so that you can get the right kind of support that you require for your foot.

These are just a few tips on how the body works, what fitness entails and how to keep going once you’ve started your active lifestyle. Everyone can exercise, but it must be enjoyable and should fit in with your daily routine so that you are motivated to keep it up.

 

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