Friday, 24 August 2012

How Does your Personal Body Image Affect your Exercise

Your personal body image can have a profound effect on your weight in a number of ways. You can become dangerously overweight or underweight if you have a poor image of yourself, so you need to learn to look at yourself realistically, with help from outside sources if need be.

When Your Image Makes You Lose Weight Excessively

If you look at yourself in the mirror and see someone who's overweight, whether you are or not, you may begin to lose weight at a dangerous pace. The healthiest way to lose weight is to eat a balanced diet and exercise regularly. However, your poor self-image could make you try fad diets and push yourself to the limit. You may engage in bulimic or anorexic tendencies by a combination of starving yourself, purging your food and/or over exercising. Being underweight puts you at risk for many serious health conditions.

When Your Image Makes You Gain Weight

There's another way that a poor body image can impact your weight and that's by making you gain weight. If you find yourself avoiding looking in the mirror because you think your body is unattractive and if you tell yourself that there's no point in trying to lose weight because you'll always be overweight, you may be in danger of not getting adequate exercise and overeating. If you're ashamed of your body, you may be less likely to go out in public to exercise and find the friends who can help encourage you to work out and stick to a diet. If you can't summon the motivation to lose weight or keep your body at a healthy weight, you might gain weight.

When Your Body Image Impacts Your Weight

The easiest way to combat the weight gain or loss you may experience due to a poor self-image is to find a doctor or someone you can trust to tell you the truth without sparing your feelings (within reason). Your body image may be skewed; anorexic people, for example, are dangerously underweight but only see an overweight person in the mirror. Being ashamed of being overweight could be less of an issue than you think; if you're only a few pounds overweight, your health may not be in danger. Friends and loved ones may even find you attractive with more voluptuous curves.
A doctor should be able to tell you if you really do need to lose weight and what you can do to lose weight in a healthy manner. If you still struggle with a poor self-image, your doctor may recommend counselling so that you can work on your self esteem and learn to embrace the positives when it comes to the way your body looks....................................

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Tips to Get the Most of Your Gym Workout

If you're going to spend your valuable time at the gym, don't you want to ensure that you're getting the most out of each workout? Your time is valuable and you deserve to get great value from your time investment. 
The following are a number of tips that ensure that you're not wasting precious time and effort, while getting the results you want.

1. Go in with a plan
Know what you're going to do the minute you step in the gym.  Having that focus and clarity will ensure that no time is wasted and that every second you spend will contribute to your plan.  Also, be sure to know what your fitness goals so you are working towards them, be it fat loss, muscle gain, etc.

2.  Keep a workout journal
Making sure you've got the right weight, knowing the reps you need to shoot for, reviewing how you've felt after previous workouts gives you a great baseline for each workout and something to strive to improve upon.

3. Wear an mp3 player
This does three things: it makes your workout more enjoyable, it prevents people from talking to you and interrupting your workout, and studies show that listening to music can actually improve your performance.

4. Drink lots of water
Keeping yourself hydrated is key to ensuring you have a great workout.  Take a water bottle with a goal to try and finish it at each session.

5. Warm up/Cool Down
Prevent injury and improve your performance by doing a light 5 minute warm up before your work out and a 5 minute cool down after your workout.

6.  Wear proper clothing
Sure we all want to look the part, but clothing that is functional should be first and foremost.

7. Use compound exercises
If you're lifting weights, make sure you have some compound or multi-joint exercises within your workout to hit multiple muscles at once.

8. Forget about reading anything
If you can read during your workout, you're not working hard enough.

9. Lift heavy or go to failure
If you're lifting weights and want to see results, be sure to lift heavy so you struggle to complete your last rep.  As a rule of thumb, avoid rep ranges above 15 reps.  If you're doing cardio, make sure you work hard to get that heart rate up while pushing yourself.  The more you put in, the more you'll get out of it.

10.  Change it up
You need to continue to challenge your body and shock it into seeing results.  This means changing up your workout on a regular basis, such as every 4-6 weeks.  If you feel physically comfortable with your workout, then it's time to get out of it.