Often, when you watch someone lifting weights in a gym, you’ll notice they’re essentially “throwing” the weights up and “dropping” the weights down more than actually “lifting” or “lowering” the weights. They’re allowing certain aspects of physics (momentum, inertia, and gravity) to do much of the work for them instead of truly engaging, and therefore stimulating their muscles. Unfortunately their “perceived” goal is to make the weight move, but the real goal in weight training isn’t just moving the weight; the goal is to fatigue and challenge the targeted muscles. Depending on the specific exercise and range of movement involved, we instruct our clients to take approximately 10 seconds to lift the weight and another 5-10 seconds to lower the weight. By moving slowly, you’re not allowing inertia to carry the weight up or using gravity to let the weight crash down during the lowering phase of the movement. This enhanced and more complete muscle fiber stimulation ensures that you’re not simply “spinning your wheels.” This high-quality exercise stimulus will lead to greater results far quicker than more traditional lifting methods.

* If you're looking to control your weight, exercise is the least efficient way to do it. You'd have to run for hours to keep the cookies you ate from adding to your waistline. It's far more effective to not eat the cookies. Making fruits and vegetables a larger part of your diet will help crowd out the foods that don't offer much in the way of nutrition, and which add pounds that shouldn't be there. Also, as you build lean muscle tissue, your body will lessen its fatty tissue, and your shape will change. If you're overweight, you're not trying to lose weight, you're trying to lose fat. If your goal is to look and feel great, strength building exercise will accomplish this while making you fit in the process. Doing only aerobics will not.


Circuit training is a fun way to focus on strength and aerobic exercise and is great especially if you love some variety and a faster pace of working out. It’s worth noting that circuit training doesn’t offer the same level of conditioning as strength and aerobic exercise does on their own. Specifically, if your fitness goal is to be strong, circuit training is not the best way to reach that goal. You can do circuit training in groups or classes as well as alone. This article offers an easy way of creating your own circuit routines.

The deadlift is one of the foundational strength movements in any exercise program. HOW TO DO IT: The deadlift begins with the bar on the ground. You can perform this with a regular grip or an alternating grip, which means one hand facing towards your body and one hand facing away. With a proud chest and locked core, pull the bar up while keeping it as close to your body as possible. Use your hip hinge and push your knees back to keep your body over the bar. Then extend the hips and squeeze the glutes to complete the move. MUSCLES USED: Glutes, quads, hamstrings, calves, back and core.
If your immune system is constantly fighting both its internal and external environment, it can be more challenging to live, work and exercise with the greater cognitive dysfunction, headaches, allergies, tender lymph nodes and both joint and muscle pain.  Yes, I do get it. However, I want you to be successful. Living myself with M.E, and lyme co-infections, the right approach is essential to making exercise work for us, not against us. 
You'll need a box or sturdy bench to complete this move. If you've never attempted box jumps, start with a box that is mid-calf height and progress to higher heights from there. Stand in front of box with feet shoulder-width apart. Bend knees, send hips back, swing arms back, and, as you swing arms forward, explode up onto box. Land lightly on toes (no loud thuds!) then step down one foot at a time and repeat.
Developing research has demonstrated that many of the benefits of exercise are mediated through the role of skeletal muscle as an endocrine organ. That is, contracting muscles release multiple substances known as myokines which promote the growth of new tissue, tissue repair, and multiple anti-inflammatory functions, which in turn reduce the risk of developing various inflammatory diseases.[114] Exercise reduces levels of cortisol, which causes many health problems, both physical and mental.[115] Endurance exercise before meals lowers blood glucose more than the same exercise after meals.[116] There is evidence that vigorous exercise (90–95% of VO2 max) induces a greater degree of physiological cardiac hypertrophy than moderate exercise (40 to 70% of VO2 max), but it is unknown whether this has any effects on overall morbidity and/or mortality.[117] Both aerobic and anaerobic exercise work to increase the mechanical efficiency of the heart by increasing cardiac volume (aerobic exercise), or myocardial thickness (strength training). Ventricular hypertrophy, the thickening of the ventricular walls, is generally beneficial and healthy if it occurs in response to exercise.
Training to Failure. During most lifts with a moderately heavy weight, the set is completed before failure is reached. Muscles feels taxed, the sweating has begun, a few more sets are rocked, and we move on to the next exercise. This is a great way to get stronger, but is taking a set to failure an even better way? Yes and no Muscle Activation strategies during strength training with heavy loading vs. repetitions to failure. Sundstrup, E., et al. 1 National Research Center for the Working Environment, Copenhagen, Denmark 2, Institute of Sport Science and Clinical Biomechanics, University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark 3Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Bispebjerg University Hospital, Copenhagen, Denmark. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research. 2012 Jul;26(7):1897-903.. While training to failure — lifting until the body can't do a single more rep — recruits more muscle and triggers the body to release more strength-building hormones, it’s most effective if a very high percentage of a one rep max can be performed The application of training to failure in periodized multiple-set resistance exercise programs. Willardson, J.M. Physical Education Department, Eastern Illinois University, Charleston, Illinois 61920, USA. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research; 2007 May;21(2):628-31. The mechanisms of muscle hypertrophy and their application to resistance training. Schoenfeld BJ. Global Fitness Services, Scarsdale, New York, USA. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research; 2010 Oct;24(10):2857-72.. Also, sets to failure increase the opportunity for overtraining and injury, so it’s best to use this technique only occasionally and with a spotter.
For Paced Audio Workouts: MotionTraxx (iPhone or iPad) - This music-based app is another great option for home exercisers, particularly if you're a walker or runner. Deekron the Fitness DJ has put together an incredible variety of music mixes, all set at different beats per minute, so you can find the perfect pace for any workout - Walking, running, lifting weights or other activities. There are also coached workouts (these cost extra) available at iTunes.
I believe we are coming around to the conclusion that what was recommended for years by the medical community (30 minutes of "aerobic exercise" 3-5 times a week, getting the heart rate up to 80% max. for age, etc.) has been inadequate, and of too low an intensity level. When an activity is of sufficient intensity, and not of a certain duration or repeated a certain number of times, the body will initiate a total-body response (metabolic, HDL, glucose tolerance, blood pressure, bone mineral density, immune competency, etc.) It appears that if this level of intensity is never reached, regardless of the amount of time spent or the frequency it is repeated, the beneficial response by the body never occurs, or is at least blunted.
Brovold et al. [7] supposed the importance of an exercise is based on a high-intensity and continuous monitoring model because in their research a nonmonitored home-based group did not improve their physical fitness as much as the monitored group that accomplished a high-intensity aerobic exercise adjusted by means of the Borg Scale and a musical pace [25]. However, Brovold et al. [7], despite an exercise protocol with a high-intensity aerobic interval (HIA), found a small effect on SFT. This may be due to the fact that the exercise protocol used by Brovold et al. [7] did not interact favorably with the skills tested by SFT. Thus, a positive relationship among vigorous physical exercise [17] or HIA exercise [7] and the functional abilities tested by the SFT is not fully evident. On the contrary, the vigorous exercise protocol used here enhanced 5 out of 6 of the SFT and seems to be more focused than the aforementioned one. The small effect of vigorous physical exercise through the 8-foot up and go test is not fully clear and may depend on several factors: (i) a large standard deviation at T0 due to the presence of two subjects who showed a very low functional capacity; (ii) inadequacy of the exercises to improve this ability; and/or (iii) inadequate sensitivity of an 8-foot up and go test. In a recent study by Furtado et al. [15] conducted on a large number of elderly females, even though the SFT was used at baseline and after 8 months from an intervention program of multimodal exercise training (3 days per week), not all skills tested were found improved. However, according to a meta-analysis [11] that included 18 different exercise studies, even a small positive effect can be considered to be of great value in this group of individuals who are at risk of further functional decline. In conclusion, the present study shows that vigorous physical exercise in healthy elderly people provides significant improvements in the majority of the different skills assessed by the SFT.
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