Exercise Expectations

What You Can Expect From Exercise

The Shrot Term Benefit (right after you finish): Exercise works on the part of the brain that determines what kind of mood you’re in. No matter how rotten you feel when you start out, a good run, swim, bike ride, or walk can change that mood. If you’re already feeling good, you’ll even feel better.

The Long Term Benefit: After a few weeks your body will be firmer and more flexible. Your pulse will be slower when you’re not working out; a sign that your heart is working at a healthier pace. You’ll look better and the difference will start to show in your shape and how you carry yourself.
 What You Can’t Expect From Exercise

You can’t expect to look like a super model that  you see in a magazine, television or advertisement. If you went to take voice lessons, you might expect your voice to improve, but you wouldn’t expect to sound like Madonna. The same goes for your shape. You’ll end up with your body –  in shape,  not with the shape of someone else.
A Work Out That Works
The word exercise covers a lot of different activities, from walking to weight lifting. The best exercise is any kind that keeps your whole body moving for at least 20 minutes, makes you breathe harder than usual, makes you sweat, and gets your heart beating faster. 

A good exercise routine involves these four things:
Warming up
Cooling down

Warming up
Before you begin working out at full force, start slowly by using the same motions you’ll be using when you’re exercising . By starting out easy, your giving your blood time to make its way to your muscles. The blood is fuel for those muscles, and if you don’t give it a chance to get to them, they might poop out on you. 
This is when you work your body so much that you feel a difference in your pulse rate and in the way you are breathing. During conditioning, you’re working out the most important muscle of all — your heart. Exercise that increases your pulse rate (makes your heart beat faster) is the kind that has all of the benefits like controlling your appetite and making you feel terrific. People who don’t exercise end up storing much more of what they eat as fat, than people who work out often. The reason for this is that muscles which are in good shape from conditioning use of a lot of energy, and fat uses hardly any energy at all. (Read: you burn more calories)
Cooling down
Don’t bring yourself to a sudden stop when you’ve finished your work out. Your body isn’t prepared to quit as quickly as you might be, and a sudden stop could cause cramps, dizziness, or even fainting. Slow to a stop by lightly doing whatever activity you’ve been doing, just at a slower pace.

This softens and relaxes your muscles, allowing them to handle the extra stress you have put on them during your work out. Well-stretched joints are less likely to strain, or sprain. Even if you only have time for a quick stretch, doing it after your workout is key.
Make the most of your routine by including all four steps, and embrace your inner supermodel.


Intensity and Recovery! From FITPOINT

FITPOINT Topic of the Week: We all workout at different intensities and vary in how often. How hard do you work-out? Do you ever fatigue yourself or do you workout just enough to get a little burn? If you do go all out, how do you deal with this or recover? What is your routine after your workout?

This is a great topic, and I have given it a lot of thought. Intensity and Recovery actually give me a lot of anxiety, as I am never sure I am doing the right thing.

First is intensity. Over the past six months, I have been trying other people’s workouts that I have gotten online – mostly from Bodybuilding.com. I have done drop set type work outs, rest pause type work outs, 15 rep work outs, and I am now finishing up a four week program of 7 sets workout. I was missing having a trainer, so by printing out a structured workout and following it to the “T” each time, I felt like I had a kind of “trainer”. I also chose workouts that I had never heard of before that offered a new way of thinking about muscle building. I figured that I was sure to do something “right” if I tried a whole bunch of different techniques.

After a lot of sole searching and analyzing of these workouts, I have come to realize that my intensity has suffered. I think because the workout routines were so specific, I felt like I had “pass” if I did not work as hard. Except for maybe the rest pause, all the workouts have not been as intense as what I would have done on my own. I am glad I gave each workout a try, but I am also disappointed and thinking that I wasted six months of training.

Today was legs and the last day of my 7 sets workout. I followed the workout as I have been for the past four weeks, but I also added several supersets to ramp up the intensity. I realized how much I have been missing that intensity.

I am looking forward to next week to get back to my old way of doing things, and I am sure I will incorporate a few tricks that I have learned along the way.

Next is recovery. What to eat, when to eat, how much protein, how many carbs… it makes my head spin. Everyone has a different opinion on the best way to recover. I almost always have a protein shake after a workout. Sometimes I add a banana in the shake and make a smoothie.

I used to add a teaspoon of raw honey to get a surge of sugar. When I first read about adding the honey, it made sense, but as I thought more about it, it seemed kind of crazy. I want my body to use up stored fat I already have, not give it honey to burn.

It is hard finding the balance between building muscle in the most efficient and effective way possible and maintaining a low weight. That is where my anxiety comes into play and why I stopped with the raw honey. I used to have a sweet potato about an hour after my protein shake. I need to start doing that again.

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have to say about Intensity and Recovery.
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