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Leading An Active Life

FITNESS: Leading An Active Life.
What does the word Fitness really mean? Fitness is said to be the condition of being physically strong, How Suitable something or Someone is, and it doesn’t mean marathon weight training.
The key to achieving and maintaining fitness is keeping training and workouts fun.
Here are Steps that will help in getting in shape once and for all.

1. Stretch Before and After Exercising: But don't stretch cold, tight muscles. Warm up first with five to six minutes of gentle exercise, such as jogging in place, stationary bicycling. or jumping jacks. When you've begun to perspire slightly or at least feel warm, it's safe to start stretching. Otherwise, you may cause microscopic tears in your muscles. Don't bounce when stretching, since this actually tightens muscles. The best kind of stretch is a "Static" stretch, where you gradually increase the stretch without straining the muscles by holding the stretch for 10 to 15 seconds.
Although recent studies have failed to show that stretching after a too strenuous workout heads off muscles soreness, it does promote flexibility and can keep your muscles from tightening up quickly.

2. Work Out in the Water: Swimming isn't the only kind of water exercise. Deep-Water running and other water workout can provide aerobic benefits without putting stress on joints and muscles. For people recovering from leg or back injury, aquatic exercise is good because of the water's cushioning, supportive effect; this also makes it deals for pregnant women or obese individuals.
When exercising in water, make sure the temperature is comfortable, usually 82' to 86'. If it's too hot, you may feel weak or even pass out; if too cool, it may cause pain in stiff or arthritic joints.

3. Mow Your Lawn Aerobically: Use an old-fashioned lawn mower rather than a power mower. Not Only is it less expensive and less likely to break down, but it doesn't pollute the air. It also provides good exercise: pushing a manual mower for an hour burns between 420 and 480 calories-about as many as an hour of tennis.

4. Know When To Rest: Many Overuse injuries at first produce only mild or intermittent pain that you may be tempted to ignore, or that you may confuse with the twinges and mild muscle soreness that can accompany a strenuous workout (and that do not damage tissue). The telltale signs of a potentially serious injury include: severe or persistent muscle pain, swelling, or spasm; pain centered in a bone of joint; stiffness or decreased mobility of a joint; numbness or tingling. If any of these symptoms appear, you should stop exercising. Rest the affected muscles for at least five to seven days, then slowly return to training.
If the symptoms are severe or grow worse, consult your physician or a sport-medicine practitioner.

5. Take Care of Sore Muscles: Stiff, sore muscles are common in weekend athletes who exercise only occasionally, as well as in frequent exercises who suddenly increase the intensity of their workout. This type of pain is called Delayed-Onset muscle soreness (DOMS). There is no proven treatment for DOMS, although recent research suggests that repeating the activity that caused the soreness-but at a much lower intensity-may ease discomfort. If DOMS becomes very uncomfortable and you want to take a pain reliever, don't reach for aspirin or ibuprofen, which may interfere with muscle repair and thus prolong soreness. These medications block the body's production of prostaglandin, substances that help stimulate the repair process.
Acetaminophen (such as Tylenol), which has no anti-prostaglandin effect, is probably your best choice for the relief of muscle soreness. (However, aspirin or ibuprofen-such as Motrin or Advil-are the medications to take for the pain and inflammations of sprains, strains, and tendinitis.)

6. Under-dress For Winter Workouts: The most common cold-weather problems for exercisers isn't that they wear too little clothing, but too much. Exercise raises body temperature significantly-even a moderate workout can make you feel like it's 30' warmer than it really is. So when you're about to run on a 25' day, dress for about 55'. It's good idea to wear several layers that you can peel off as you become warm; clothes with zippers serve the same purpose. Wear a cap that you stuff in your pocket when you're feeling comfortably warm.

7. Buy The Right Athletic Shoes:  Hold the front and back of the shoe and band it. The sole should bend where the foot bands-at the ball; if it bends at mid-foot, it will offer little support. if your foot rolls outward significantly when you run, you're probably better off with a shoe that has a strong heel counter, a substantial yet somewhat soft mid-sole, a curved last, and a relatively flexible sole. If your foot tends to roll inward you'll benefit from shoe with good arch support, a straight last, and a less flexible sole, especially along the inside.

8. Lift Weight To Become Stronger: Paired with regular aerobic exercise, weight training increases your strength and muscle endurance. Start weight training with light weights. If you belong to a gym, an exercise specialist there can help you develop a workout routine and teach you proper technique. Begin with a five to ten minute warm-up. At each session, do six exercises for the upper body and six for the lower body. Watch your breathing-exhale as your lift the weight, inhale as you lower it. Give each muscle group a full day rest before exercising it again; exercising the same muscle group two days in a row may make it weaker, not stronger.

9. Walk, Walk, Walk: A Study of thousand of Harvard alumni suggested that a long-term regimen of walking can significantly prolong life. Other research has shown that walking at speeds of three and a half to four and a half miles an hour-that's brisk walking, not strolling-produces cardiovascular benefits. Slower walking can be advantages to older people, cardiac patients, or people recuperating from illness. Walking at speeds of five miles an hour can burn as many calories at moderate jogging, but even slow walking can burn 60 to 80 calories per mile.

10. Get a Stress Test:  An exercise stress test is an important diagnostic tool for uncovering cardiac problems. If the test indicates that you have a heart disorder, an appropriate exercise program can be designed for you. You should undergo a stress test before starting an exercise program if:
1. You are 45 or over
2. You are between 35 and 44 and have at least one risk factor for coronary artery disease. (These includes a parent or sibling who developed coronary artery disease before the age of 50, smoking, obesity, and elevated blood pressure or cholesterol level.)
3. You have cardiovascular of lung disease at any age, or a metabolic such as diabetes or hyperthyroidism. In these cases, the test itself may entaail some risk, so you should consult your doctor first.

11. Take The Stairs: Make a point of climbing stairs instead of taking an elevator or escalator. As a supplement to other forms of exercise, stair climbing may help your weight in check while it strengthens your legs.

12. Cross Train For Health and Pressure: Alternating types of sports or exercises you do may break the monotony of a one-exercise routine. Complementary workouts allow you to strengthen more muscle groups than a single activity would, and also allow each muscle group to rest while others get a workout. Some sports-medicine specialists also believe that cross training may reduce the risk of injury.

13. Safeguard Your Knees: One out of every four sports injuries involves the knee. To prevent injuries, beware of suddenly intensifying your workouts, which can stress the knees and increase the risk of an overuse injury. Other factors that increase your chance of injury worn-out or ill-fitting shoes and weak quadricep muscles (the muscles on the front of the thigh).
Cycling is an excellent way to strengthen the quadriceps, as is walking up stairs or hills. If You're recovering from knee injury, consult your doctor before undertaking any exercise.

14. Put The Right Seat On Your Bicycle: As you cycle, the whole of your weight rests on your two "sit bones," which in turn rest on the seat of the bike, so you may develop tenderness, chafing, bruising, or inflammation of the buttocks or crotch area. This is especially common among women, whose hip bones are usually about an inch wider apart than a man's so that standard bike seats are uncomfortable. Special anatomically designed saddles-wider and well cushioned at the back.-can be helpful and are easy to install. Gel-filled or sheepskin saddles or pads can also ease the pressure and friction.
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