Fitness Motivation: Three Tips to Help You Stay Active

Walking can improve your wellbeing.

The more sedentary you become the harder it is to get yourself moving. Try these exercises to get you back in the fitness groove.

Many people find it difficult to get and stay motivated with their exercise and healthy active lifestyle plans. The reasons for this lack of motivation are vast, but two very common ones are: today’s modern sedentary lifestyle and the natural aging process.The more sedentary you become the harder it feels to get yourself moving. Sitting around all day decreases your energy levels and can have a negative impact on your body weight, which in turn makes movement less comfortable. This combination of lack of energy and not feeling good only compounds the desire to remain sedentary. Breaking this vicious cycle is essential if you want to get and stay motivated toward reaching your personal wellness goals.

The natural effects of aging can also make it difficult to maintain your exercise motivation, and although we can’t prevent the aging process, there are some great ways that we can counteract Mother Nature’s aging effects, and keep you motivated and exercising on a consistent basis.

Here are three tips to help you fight towards staying active and motivated.

Meet your minimum exercise minutes each day: Getting your body moving on a regular basis is not only great for helping you to reach your body composition goals, but it also gives you a natural energy boost, promotes increased circulation, and improves your overall sense of wellbeing. When you keep your joints moving with regular activity, you are less likely to experience loss of mobility and joint soreness that are commonly caused by inactivity. It is recommended that in order to experience the health benefits associated with daily activity, you need to exercise for a minimum of 30 minutes a day, five days a week. The first step is often the most difficult, but once you get active, the feel-good benefits make it easier to continue. Even if you can’t commit to 30 full minutes to start with, know that a little bit of exercise is always better than doing none at all.

Mix up your impact: It’s important to strive to maintain healthy bone density as we age, and regain it after spending prolonged periods of being sedentary. Performing exercises that are high impact in nature, such as walking, running or jumping can help you maintain healthy bones. Alternating between low impact activities, such as swimming and cycling, and high impact activities, such as running and jumping, is a perfect way to ensure you are maximizing the bone health benefits of your exercise routine, at the same time as ensuring that you are not putting too much stress on your joints. Mixing up your routine will help you avoid excessive post-exercise joint soreness and prevent you from getting bored.

Focus on your muscles: A common age related issue that can be helped with exercise is the natural loss of muscle mass known as sarcopenia. Muscle loss or body composition imbalance is not always due to the aging process, spending a long time being inactive or being underweight can also reduce your lean muscle mass.

Lifting weights or performing body weight exercises in combination with consuming a protein-rich diet will ensure that you build lean muscle mass and retain your strength. Maintaining your muscle mass is great for your metabolism and for helping you look and feel your best. Try to perform muscle-building exercises at least three days a week.

Whether you are working towards achieving a specific goal, or simply want to feel young and energized, a daily focus on being active will help you get and stay motivated.

Find out more at: http://www.DiscoverHerbalife.com

Five-Minute Workouts to Keep Your Fitness on Track

Start your day with a core workout.

Some exercise is always better than doing none at all. Commit to doing quick five-minute workouts any week you feel too busy to hit the gym.

The great thing about Halloween, if you have kids, is the extra walking minutes you can accumulate for the entire family as you go trick-or-treating around the neighborhood. The week leading up to Halloween, however, can be hectic and interfere with your usual workout routine. The extra treats consumed can mess with your waistline too, so here are some fast and effective workouts you can squeeze into your day to keep your results on track.

We all know that busy days are a part of life, and as a busy working mom myself, I know all too well that some days getting in a workout seems almost impossible. But with a no excuses attitude, I also know that you don’t have to let your hectic schedule interfere with getting in a quick burst of exercise. If getting in your daily 30 minutes is challenging this week, commit to five-minute bouts of exercise to ensure that you stay on track with your personal body composition goals.

Here are five quick at-home routines that you can add to your day.

Morning start: Jump out of bed and do this fat burning routine in your p.j.’s. It’s not as intense as a HIIT workout, but it will help get your blood flowing and promote the release of your natural feel-good endorphins to help you start your day feeling good.

Mid-day blast: This workout will get your heart rate up and challenge your body. It has lots of my favorite athletic style moves that promote muscle strengthening and, because it’s high in intensity, you will burn calories for a while afterwards as your body recovers.

Lower-body Fix: Working the muscles of the posterior chain – a.k.a. the booty and legs – is great because this major muscle group burns calories faster than working smaller muscles, making a lower-body routine a perfect choice when you are short on time.

Upper-body focus: This quick upper-body workout is great for toning the chest and arms.

All about the abs: This core focused abdominal workout is sure to make you feel great. If you have little ones at home, this routine is great for when they are taking a nap.

Stress relief before bed: If you are wound up at the end of the day, consider spending some time before bed doing this stretching routine. It will help you connect your mind, body and breath. Stretching at the end of the day may help clear your mind and slow your energy down to help you get a good night’s sleep. It’s not a big calorie burner, but the relaxation and muscle stretching benefits feel great.

Short workouts are a perfect option for days when you know you are busy. If you perform all six workouts, that’s your 30-minute health benefits of exercise met for the day. If you only have time to do one or two routines, get in the rest of your exercise minutes with walking and staying generally active.

An at-home workout can be highly effective. Even if you only have time to squeeze in a few minutes of exercise, it can make a big difference with how you feel. Getting your body moving each day can build your self-confidence and your muscles too. Make this Halloween a healthy and fit one.

Find out more at: http://www.DiscoverHerbalife.com

Fast-Track Your Fitness Results with a Balanced Exercise Plan

Stretch for body confidence.

Get better and faster results by customizing your workouts – discover what’s missing from your current routine.

 

Taking a balanced approach, in my opinion, is the best approach to living a healthy, active lifestyle. Training in a balanced and structured way will help you to more accurately progress your workouts, may help you to avoid unnecessary injuries, and following a balanced routine may enhance your overall training results, helping you reach your goals faster.

We all have our individual likes and dislikes when it comes to exercising, so customizing your routine based on what you love is the best way to ensure you stay motivated and dedicated towards achieving your goal.

Here are four elements of exercise that every good plan should include.

Stretching: Stretching on a regular basis can help you gain body confidence and make you become more conscious of your posture. Stretching is also great for improving joint stability, muscular flexibility and alleviating muscular tension.

Dynamic warm-up stretches and static post-exercise stretching can take as little as 10 minutes of your time, yet can make a dramatic difference in how you feel. Ensure that every workout starts with a warm-up and ends with a cool-down.

Cardio: Engaging in cardiovascular activity is good for your heart and great for burning excess calories. Your heart is a muscle, and pushing it to work hard a few days each week may help improve your cardiac output. If you engage in cardiovascular activity on a regular basis, you may lower your overall resting heart rate, which is good for your long-term health. There are so many activities you can choose from; walking, running, cycling, dancing and swimming are all very popular, but any exercise that gets your heart rate up will work.

Performing moderately intense cardio based activities for at least 150 minutes per week or 75 minutes per week of vigorous activity – or a combination of the two – is a good amount to aim for to reap the health benefits associated with exercising.

Strength: When you add resistance based training to your routine, you will start to notice changes in how you look and feel. You may loose excess body fat and gain lean muscle mass, which is not only great for your appearance, but it also helps your body become more efficient at burning calories. A body with a high percentage of lean muscle mass requires more calories just to sustain itself than a person of the same weight who has a higher percentage of body fat.

You can stimulate muscle tissue to grow by exercising, using your body weight as resistance or by lifting weights on a regular basis. Performing resistance based activities three to four times per week, combined with consuming a protein-rich diet can help you achieve great results.

Endurance: Engaging in regular, prolonged physical activity can improve your muscular strength and boost your overall endurance level. When you exercise, your body must deliver oxygen and nutrients to your tissues in order to help your cardiovascular system work more efficiently.

When your heart and lungs work more efficiently, you have more energy to go about your daily tasks. You can improve cardiovascular endurance by extending the duration of your workouts, and muscular endurance can be achieved by increasing your weight and reps at the gym.

Spend at least one session per week focusing on your endurance based fitness level.

We all have different goals for our bodies, so taking a personalized approach to your plan is the best way to ensure that you are striving toward becoming your best self. You get to decide how much of each mode of training you incorporate into your week to feel at your best. Keep an exercise journal as you experiment with your plan, so that when you do find the perfect exercise combination for your body, you will have it written down for future reference.

Find out more at: http://www.DiscoverHerbalife.com

5 Ways to Ramp Up Your Excercise Routine

Train with a friend for better results.

 

Do you find yourself getting sad as the colder days and early dark nights of the fall months start to settle in? If that sounds like you, beat the post summer blues by increasing your commitment to living a more active lifestyle.

Performing structured daily exercises can help you perform at your best in both physical and non-physical tasks, because the benefits of exercising go far beyond the physical. Physical activity promotes the release of endorphins, such as dopamine and serotonin in the brain. These hormones are your body’s natural happy hormones, so their increased release can give you an emotional boost and makes you feel happier and more productive. As the summer ends and the winter approaches, it’s important to find ways to enhance you mood, and I believe there is no better answer than ramping up your physical activity routine.

Exercising regularly can greatly enhance your emotional sense of wellbeing and positively impact your overall mental health. The number of brain related benefits associated with exercising regularly are vast and include improved brain structure, improved brain function, improved cognition, enhanced memory, and an improved ability to cope with stress.

“Right now is a perfect time to get more active”

The fall months signal the upcoming stress of the holidays, and quite often the holiday season includes a lot of unhealthy eating. This increased stress, in combination with access to more unhealthy foods, can lead to weight gain and make losing weight more difficult. Finding time for activity is especially important during this time of year. Ramping up your exercise routine during periods of stress will allow you to regroup, focus on yourself and kick-start your results.

Here are five ways you can ramp up your exercise routine.

Increase your exercise time: Spend an extra few minutes at the gym to ensure you are doing a complete and challenging routine. Allowing yourself an extra 10-20 minutes for your workout will make you feel less rushed and give you the opportunity to complete a more thorough and balanced workout.  Making time to complete a session that has a suitable dynamic warm-up and a post-workout stretch is a great way to perfect your personal routine.

Train with a friend: Make your gym time a little more fun and social for a few weeks and train with a friend or join a group. It’s easier to stay motivated when you have a friend by your side to push you through.

Get outside: The temperatures at this time of year may be dropping, but if you dress appropriately you can enjoy the crisp, cool air, and a change of scenery may boost your mood.

Mix up your routine: Try a new mode of exercise to give yourself a challenge, taking a class or following an online routine is a great way to infuse some energy into your workout.

Up the intensity level: If you feel capable, push yourself a little harder in your workout, increase your weights or add a few extra reps. Trying a HIIT style session will decrease your time spent at the gym without negatively impacting your results. In fact, HIIT style training can boost your fitness level.

Make your personal mental and emotional health a priority and stay committed to living a healthy and active lifestyle regardless of the season.

Find out more at: http://www.DiscoverHerbalife.com

VIDEO: Aerobic exercise blast: Samantha Clayton’s best cardio workout | Herbalife Workout

aerobicHere’s a great cardio routine that anyone can do. Are you ready to work on your fitness? Then let’s get to it!

 

 

 

 

By Samantha Clayton, AFAA, ISSA. Samantha is Sr. Director of Fitness Education at Herbalife.

Find out more at: http://www.DiscoverHerbalife.com

VIDEO: FAT TORCHING WORKOUT Samantha Clayton’s Body Blast Herbalife Fitness

samantha-12
Are you looking for the ultimate interval workout? Get ready to burn some serious calories with this fat torching routine.

By Samantha Clayton, AFAA, ISSA. Samantha is Sr. Director of Fitness Education at Herbalife.

Find out more at: http://www.DiscoverHerbalife.com

VIDEO: Core ab workout: Samantha Clayton’s Body Blast | Herbalife Fit Tips

core abTry this extended workout that will help keep your core strong. You don’t need any weights or a large space, so what are you waiting for? Let’s go!

 

 

 

By Samantha Clayton, AFAA, ISSA. Samantha is Sr. Director of Fitness Education at Herbalife.

Find out more at: http://www.DiscoverHerbalife.com

VIDEO: #ActiveBodyFit – Challenge Trail Workout 1

Samantha 14Ready to find your inner athlete? Here’s a challenging workout with five key warm up moves, a five minute jog and a two mile run. Now let’s get to it!
 

 

 

By Samantha Clayton, AFAA, ISSA. Samantha is Sr. Director of Fitness Education at Herbalife.

Find out more at: http://www.DiscoverHerbalife.com

Family Fitness: Raise Healthy, Active Kids

Get active with your kids.

Whether you want to raise superstar athletes or just emphasize the importance of physical fitness in order to raise healthy, active kids, it’s never too late to get started on a family fitness journey.

There’s never been a better time to get active with your family! If you’re looking to change your children’s current lifestyle and make healthier choices, then I have six great tips that may help you get or stay on a path to raising healthy, active kids. An active lifestyle is a great family goal that can be achieved with a few creative changes.

Related Article: Design Your Own Healthy, Active Lifestyle Plan

1) Talk to your child’s physician

I always advise that you talk to your child’s doctor about what kind of fitness is right for them —especially if it’s a drastic lifestyle change. The words ‘active’ and ‘kids’ used to go hand in hand, but in today’s modern world, many kids hardly ever run around or play sports. Going from complete inactivity to a sudden active lifestyle can be a shock to the system. All changes in physical activity should be gradual. Checking your kids’ health before making any lifestyle changes should be the first step to achieving your family’s fitness goals.

2) Create a routine

The best way to get going on your family fitness journey is to write out a schedule and pick two activity days per week. Consider planning outdoor activities such as hikes, bike rides or sports to make it feel less like a duty and more like playtime. The more you can involve your kids in the planning process, the more enthusiastic they will be about the change.

3) Embrace modern technology

If you have children that are reliant on modern technology such as computers, video games, and tablets, you might face a full-blown rebellion if you try to swap gadgets for family fitness time. Instead, you can embrace modern technology and ease into an active lifestyle with fitness games and challenges. There are many dance, fitness and activity games available that combine technology with simple tasks to help entertain kids into getting active. This tip shouldn’t take away from traditional outdoor activities, but it’s a step in the right direction.

4) Go back to basics and keep it simple

Remember how much fun it was to play a simple game of catch with your friends when you were younger? As you move towards more traditional fitness-based activities, focus on fun coordination and body awareness moves. Kids have developing nervous systems and would benefit greatly from engaging both small and large motor skills. These activities include kicking, catching and hopping, and they could feel more like a game rather than fitness.

5) Be smart about fitness

Children get so many ideas of what think they can do. Your child may see photos in the media of other kids lifting heavy weights. In reality, it’s not a good idea for children to be doing heavy lifting. There are differing opinions on the correct age that children should start lifting weights, and it’s a decision that should be discussed with your child’s physician. I believe doing exercises that use your body weight are a perfect way to build strength for kids and adults. I started my weights program at the age of 15. My husband started using weights at the age of 17, and we’ve both been successful in the fitness world. My children will be well into their teens before they touch a weight. Until then, they’re going to have fun with squats, pushups and playing on the monkey bars!

6) Lead by example

The greatest gift you can give your children is to lead by example by practicing healthy habits. Try popping in a fitness DVD or follow a fitness routine on the computer to set an active example. If your young children want to join in, you should let them! Just make sure they stay away from the equipment, especially weight machines and treadmills. A fall on a moving treadmill can cause permanent scarring and burns (I know this from personal experience – you don’t need to make the same mistake!).

We can all make healthier choices to lead our children down a healthy, active path. If you keep it fun for them, you can set them up for a lifetime of being active.

Written by Samantha Clayton, A.F.A.A., I.S.S.A. Samantha is Sr. Director of Fitness Education at Herbalife.

Find out more at: http://www.DiscoverHerbalife.com

Travel Smart, Travel Like a Child

Channel your inner child and move.

Moving your body while flying on an airplane is critical to your overall wellbeing while you are up in the air and when you land.

I’ve been doing a lot of flying recently and although I’ve been to some great places and met wonderful people, it still means I’ve been sitting down for long periods of time. That’s just not something my body is used to doing. In fact, I’m such a believer in keeping my body moving that I find it hard to sit still at home, too.

Related Article: How to stay fit while traveling: 6 tips for frequent travelers

How often have you seen a kid sitting still for a long time?

My constant need for movement makes me laugh as I remind myself that I am always telling my kids to stop fidgeting and sit still. I’m typing this while confined to a chair and I’ve been hit by a revelation – kids have got the right idea. With all the known facts about how movement can improve your mood, it makes sense that kids are almost always happy. And it makes me wonder: should we ever be sat in one position for hours at a time? 

It’s my opinion that the human body is designed for movement. Sitting still for prolonged periods of time isn’t a great idea, as it can impact your circulation and make you feel stiff. Many airlines provide an exercise sheet to encourage you to stretch and wiggle your feet to keep your circulation moving efficiently and I encourage you to follow their instructions. Don’t feel that completing the exercise card routine once is enough – you need to listen to your body. If you’re on a long flight, then revisit the exercise card routine every couple of hours and add your own moves to make sure stiffness doesn’t get a chance to build up anywhere. For instance, if you spend a lot of time reading or staring at a screen then loosen up your neck muscles periodically. And, if you fall asleep at an odd angle, then take the time to work out all the kinks systematically when you wake up.

Channel your inner child: keep on moving

Wondering about all this made me decide to do what my body wanted: move around. I just stepped into the aisle and stretched. And you know what? It felt wonderful. My low-key aisle aerobics were certainly worth the looks and smiles I received from fellow passengers.

I made sure not to get in anyone’s way and made the most of the small amount of space available. I’m not tall, so reaching for the ceiling felt great and releasing the tension that had built up in my neck and shoulders was a relief. I’d say a few people were intrigued by my actions and unfortunately everyone was too shy to join me. We are taught from a young age to sit still and not cause a fuss, but one curious passenger on my right asked a few fitness questions and I was happy to explain. I’m on a mission to inspire people to take ownership of their bodies. And if that means I also need to help people free themselves from social awkwardness, then so be it. Let’s all rid ourselves of the social awkwardness that comes hand in hand with going outside of what is considered normal.

Since returning to my seat, I’ve been daydreaming of how fun it would be if air stewards interrupted the quiet, sedentary, slumber with some upbeat music combined with a few chair exercises to revitalize and energize passengers. It could even be done using the TV system or they could do it over the intercom. I’m convinced it would spark conversations among chair partners about their views on movement or lack of it. I’m sure you have a few thoughts on whether this is a good or bad idea, but whatever you think you know it will make for a more interesting flight. 

Follow these tips and you’ll feel great when you land

Hydrate Often

Drink enough to stay hydrated inside and out. You may find that your skin looks better for it even after the harsh air conditioning onboard. You’re also more likely to avoid a dehydration headache if you drink frequently enough to avoid ever feeling really thirsty. Drinking often will also mean that you have no choice but to move because you’ll be going to the bathroom.

Sit Comfortably

Sitting with your back fully supported in the chair and being mindful of your posture combined with occasional lower leg, neck and shoulder stretches will ensure you get off your flight feeling refreshed and ready for action.

Move Your Body

At regular intervals throughout the flight, make sure you move. Make time to follow the exercise card if it’s provided, and embrace your inner child by fidgeting to your heart’s content.

When I get off a plane, I have to hit the road full steam ahead whether I’m headed to a fitness class or home to my excited (and fidgeting) children. It’s important that my body is feeling great and I’m ready to tackle my next challenge head on. So, next time you fly, shake your shyness and move around a little! You may be surprised by how liberated you feel.

Written by Samantha Clayton, AFAA, ISSA. Samantha is Sr. Director of Fitness Education at Herbalife.

Find out more at: http://www.DiscoverHerbalife.com

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