Fitness Tip of the Week: The Microwave

MicrowaveHow are your workouts and nutrition going this week? I hope you’re gettin’ it done and making some progress! Did you do some tips to raise your metabolism? This week’s fitness tip is about nutrition… It’s not a big secret that 70-80 percent of your fitness success comes as a result of what you put in your mouth, but I’m going to let you in on a not-so-well-known nutritional fact that will help to enhance the quality of the food you eat.

Fitness Tip of the Week: To preserve more of your food’s nutritional content, when cooking or reheating food, use conventional heating methods (stove, oven, toaster oven) instead of a microwave.

I know some of you may balk at that idea because microwaving is so convenient and fast, but hopefully what I share with you now will persuade you to use your microwave less, or sell it at the next yard sale. Listen to this, it’s disturbing…

A Microwave Does More Than Just Heat up Food

Microwaves heat up food by bombarding it with electromagnetic irradiation, causing molecular friction in the food which creates heat. This friction, however, also causes molecular damage and deformities which make your food unhealthy to eat. And the damaged food is more susceptible to food-borne contaminants like bacteria and fungus. Even worse, the food molecules become so deformed and damaged that they can cause measurable changes in your blood… for instance, hemoglobin levels (hemoglobin carries oxygen to all of your cells) decrease, HDL (the good cholesterol) levels decrease, and white blood cell production increases, which typically denotes an infection or foreign pathogen in the body that causes illness. Microwaving also creates carcinogenic substances in the food being heated! Yikes!

Maybe you are still skeptical, because it’s hard to “see” these things happening in your food. Well, let me share one last thing you can see with your own eyes. And in the interest of avoiding plagiarism, I’m just going to share this link with you:

Health 101

Scroll down about ¾ of the way down to the “microwave water” section and take a look at a plant watered with microwaved water versus a plant watered with regular water; Interesting, to say the least.

In Conclusion to the Microwave

There is much more information out there if you care to do some research on your own, but now you can at least have an educated opinion about the microwave. Thanks again for reading and letting me share my passion with you! Hopefully you enjoy and have benefited from at least one of my fitness tips. Again, feel free to copy and share this if you have friends that could benefit from this information. Is there a topic that you’d like me to discuss? Contact me with your suggestions and I will consider them for one of my future fitness tips! Have a healthy day!

Yours in fitness,

Todd

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Raise your Metabolism

Raise your metabolism

How’s your week so far? Mine is fantastic and I have some more fitness wisdom to help you further your progress with your program. I received a reader question over the weekend that I decided to address today, because I think it’s a great question that applies to anyone who wants to get in better shape (thanks, Anna!).

The question: “What’s the best way to increase lean muscle and raise your metabolism?” I’m elaborating mainly on the metabolism part of this question today, because increasing your lean mass is an element of increasing your metabolism, so here we go (I think you’ll be excited!)

Fitness tip of the week: Raise your Metabolism

 

Here are three ways you can quickly Raise your metabolism and keep it running higher all day long!

  • Do resistance training
  • Divide your daily calories into 5-6 smaller meals
  • If possible, do two shorter workouts in a day, vs. one longer workout.

First, let’s talk about resistance training. This is a great way to increase your metabolism all day long (even while you sleep!) You can do resistance training with weights, exercise bands, and your own body, to name a few. If you need help determining what exercises to do and where to start, contact me, I’d love to help out! For every pound of muscle you gain, your metabolism will burn an extra 30-50 calories per day! This means that if you had an extra 5 lbs. of lean mass you could be burning off a pound of fat every two weeks without changing anything!

Next, I’ll explain meal frequency. Every time you eat, you are fueling your metabolism’s fire, so to speak, and it is elevated as your body digests the food. So, the more often you eat, the more you stoke that fire and keep your metabolism up. But it’s not necessarily about eating more calories; it’s about eating smaller meals that your body can more efficiently process and fueling that fire on a regular basis. For the best results, you shouldn’t go more than 4-5 hours without eating. An added benefit of eating smaller meals is that your body is much less likely to store fat!

Workouts Increase Metabolism

Lastly, doing 2 shorter workouts, instead of 1 long workout is another great way to speed up your metabolism. Studies have shown that your metabolism stays elevated after a workout for up to several hours! So, if you have two workouts during the day instead of one, that’s an extra few hours of having a higher metabolism! An example of dividing your workout into shorter segments would be doing cardio in the morning and doing weights in the afternoon/ evening, or lifting one muscle group in the first workout and then focusing on a different one later in the day.

Alright, now I’m all giddy and hopped up on excitement, so I’m gonna hit my own workout for a while! I hope you’re excited too! Thanks for reading, and as usual, feel free to copy and share this with any of your friends!

Yours in Fitness,
Todd

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Common Mistakes Made at the Gym

Mistakes Made at the Gym Mistakes made at the gym

One thing I always notice as a personal trainer when I’m at the gym working out is the interesting and unique… okay, ridiculous and sometimes dangerous exercises that people come up with and try to perform. Some are pretty funny, I must admit, but some are just accidents and injuries waiting to happen. Most gym injuries come from using equipment improperly and doing exercises with bad form, but are also easily prevented by taking a few basic precautions.

Fitness Tip of the Week- Avoid Mistakes Made at the Gym

Here are a few common mistakes people make at the gym or working out at home and how to avoid them when you are exercising so you can have a safe workout and steer clear of injuries:

1. Pushing up or pulling down behind your neck- This particular mistake made at the gym commonly leads to shoulder injuries, and any exercise that makes you do this an exercise that most exercise professionals would classify as “contraindicated” (pronounced CON’-tra-IND’-i-kay-ted). This means that you’ll probably do the exercise improperly and the the risk of injury is pretty high compared to any benefit you might get from doing it, so it’s advisable to leave it out of your routine. By the way, your shoulder is the the most commonly injured joint in your body, so why push your luck? Try pushing up to the side or front of your head, and pulling down to the front as well to get virtually the same benefit with much less chance for injury.

2. Doing calf work/ toe raises on a leg press machine/ sled without the locks in place- This is an invitation to serious injury. I have a friend that made this mistake and ended up with no skin on four inches of his shin bone when the leg press platform slipped off of his toes, and I’m sure you can picture the rest. It wasn’t pretty to say the least. If you use a leg press machine, always, always, always make sure that the locks are in place to minimize how far the platform/ sled can move.

3. Turning your head to the side when doing rowing or shrugging motions- This is almost a sure way to get a pinched nerve in the back of your neck or in your upper back area. I’m betting at least one person reading this has learned the hard way that this is true. If you need to check your form or watch your rippling back muscles working in the mirror, stand directly facing the mirror so you don’t have to turn your head. This tip will save you about a week-long pain in the neck and and public teasing because you have to turn your head like Bat-Man.

4. Using exercise equipment for purposes other than that which they were designed for- There are exceptions to this rule, but unless you really know what you’re doing, stick with the exercise that is illustrated on the machine, or contact me for instructions on how to use it. Otherwise, you might get an unexpected pinch, bump or bruise. Being made fun of behind your back is a more likely scenario, though.

Have safe workouts this week and don’t do any “contraindicated” exercises, okay? Now, go and impress your friends by using the word of the day in a sentence :) Also, please feel free to copy and forward this to any of your friends who might enjoy it. Or visit Trine Fitness for more tips of the week!

Yours in Fitness,
Todd

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Soda and Diet Soda

Howdy! Hope everyone is doing great! This is the first of many articles I plan on posting to help you make incremental changes to improve your health and fitness. Also, if you have any requests for topics you would like to see covered, please let me know and I will incorporate your suggestions into by blog. My topic of discussion today has been known to stir up a little controversy in the past, but it’s something I feel strongly about and want to educate people about so they can make an informed decision for themselves.

Todd’s Fitness Tip of the Week: eliminate (or at least reduce to a bare minumum) soda AND diet soda from your diet, because they cause a host of problems with not only your workouts, but with your health in general.

Ouch, I know some of you are cringing right about now, and may be tempted to skip reading this one, but I’m telling you, ignorance is NOT bliss. You are only hurting yourself, and I know that the reason you’re reading this in the first place is that you want to improve your health and fitness, NOT get yourself sicker. So stay with me…

First of all, let’s talk briefly about regular soda (the lesser of the two evils in my opinion). It’s no secret that soda is loaded with sugar and empty calories that your body doesn’t need. Any given soda will have 10 to 18 teaspoons of sugar per 12 oz, which means if your reaching for the 44 oz. cup, you might as well open the sugar bowl and dump 36 to 65 teaspoons of sugar right down your throat! Mmm, Mmm! Although I should inform you that consuming 65 teaspoons of table sugar is better for you than drinking the 44 oz soda, because the type of sugar used to sweeten soda (called high fructose corn syrup) spikes your insulin levels higher, which means you’re more likely to store excess calories as fat. The carbonation in soda is also detrimental to your health because it can leach calcium from your bones, making them thinner and weaker. Soda is also very acidic (very close to the same acidity as battery acid) and will break down your tooth enamel as well as interfere with the Ph levels in your blood. FYI, the more acidic your body is, the more prone to sickness and disease you are. And did I mention the artificial colors, flavors and preservatives? I’m not even going into that.

Okay, now it’s diet soda’s turn in the hot seat. Just take the above information, minus the sugar part, and add one thing to it… aspartame. The FDA and the food industry have done an excellent job of downplaying the adverse effects of this poison, but you really need to know that it is just that, POISON. Aspartame has been linked to as many as 92 side effects, including migraines, fybromyalgia, epilepsy, and blindness (yes, blindness… just watch Supersize Me, there is a documented case of a man who became blind from diet soda. The soda was removed from his diet in the hospital and regained his sight after two weeks.) to name a few. Since aspartame can dissolve in a solution and is a digestable substance, it can be deposited into virtually any tissue in your body, which is possibly the reason for its many side effects. Oh yeah, one last thing… when aspartame is in your system, present with ascorbic acid (vitamin C) and sodium, a chemical reaction can occur, creating benzine, a widely known carcinogen. Oh boy! Cancer!

There are even more detrimental effects that I could go into, but you get the point, right? So please, please, please consider reducing or eliminating these harmful drinks from your diet. You will reap some great health benefits, and see better results from your workouts, I promise! Have an excellent day and a fantastic workout! Talk to you soon.

Yours in Fitness,

Todd

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