One of my favourite pieces of equipment to use is the Lebert Equalizer. They are free-floating stands that you can put in any position either upright or lying down on the ground. And they are definitely one of the most useful, versatile, and fun pieces of equipment you can use.
In the video, I'll cover some of my top picks, but here is a list of some of the exercises you can do with them.
BOXING/MARTIAL ARTS DRILLS
AGILITY LADDER DRILLS
PARALLEL BAR DIPS
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There’s no denying you’re getting older. It happens to everyone, and when you reach the age of 50, you’re entering a new phase of life. Things are slowing down, you don’t have the same energy you used to, and new wrinkles and gray hairs are appearing. If you want to stay fit and healthy through your middle years and beyond, exercise must be a part of your daily life. An active lifestyle is associated with a decreased risk for numerous health conditions that come with aging.
Whether you’ve been exercising for years or are new to fitness, it’s important to take age into account as you plan your workout routines. Many people notice a shift around the age of 50. Exercise no longer has the same effect, you tire more easily, you have more aches and pains, and you become more prone to injury.
Taking all this into account, here are six of the best exercises to consider once you reach age 50 and beyond.
Whether you’re 5 or 95, walking is one of the safest and simplest exercises you can do. No special equipment or training is needed, making it easy to walk just about anywhere, anytime. It’s also a low-impact exercise, meaning it’s easy on your joints—something that’s increasingly important as you age. You may not burn as many calories walking as you would jogging or doing other more intense workouts, but with a consistent brisk walking routine you can lose weight, strengthen muscles, improve heart health, and just enjoy the great outdoors. Also you can practice Qigong or Rooted Walking. I discuss it in more detail in my new book CENTRELINE.
Another great low-impact, cardio exercise for people in their 50s and beyond is swimming. Swimming laps or water aerobics are recommended ways to stay in shape, lose weight, and strengthen bones. Check with your fitness centre today about signing up for a water fitness class and find one that fits your personality.
3. Weight Lifting
You may be gaining weight, but as you age you’re likely losing bone density and muscle mass. For this reason, strength-training exercises become all the more important in your latter years. Maintaining muscle mass will help ward off weight gain and increasing bone density will help prevent brittle bones that are easily broken.
Two to three times a week, plan to undergo strength-training exercises that force your body to move against some sort of resistance. This could be at the gym with barbells, dumbbells, or weight machines or at home with bodyweight exercises, elastic bands, or an exercise ball. Take one or two days off (two is best) between strength-training sessions to allow your muscles time to
In your younger years you probably managed fine without much stretching, but as you age, flexibility and range of motion begin to decline. A regular stretching routine is one way to prevent injury and stay limber. Right after your strength-training sessions is an ideal time to stretch since your muscles and tendons are warmed up. Two to three days a week, plan to spend a few minutes performing stretches that work all major muscle groups.
Yoga and Pilates are both workouts that improve flexibility, strengthen muscle, and burn calories at the same time, so slip them in your routine and age with even more grace.
5. Warming Up
Maybe you got away with skipping your warm-up in years past, but an adequate warm-up before exercise becomes increasingly important as you get older. A warm-up allows your heart rate, breathing, and body temperature to gradually increase. Since you’re not as flexible as you used to be, a warm-up period also preps your muscles for exercise and slowly increases the range of motion of your joints. Spend three to five minutes at the beginning of your workout doing light cardio or gentle stretches.
6. Martial Arts
The martial arts are a very fast study with something for just about everybody. Strength, conditioning, reflexes, body coordination, increased stamina, and flexibility are some of the benefits. Don't worry. You don't have to spend hours punching the heavy bag! There are many gentle forms such as Tai Chi or Baguazhang. Of course if you're a puncher like me, you can do Ving Tsun and Boxing! In any case, martial arts are a great exercise for any age!
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When it comes power generation, it's important to use the entire body. The legs, hips, and core are far more important to generating power than the arms. In fact the arms are only the last link in the chain and barely involved! Watch the video to learn more!
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By far, one of the most common types of chronic pain has to be lower back pain. It affects just about all of us at one time or another. And anyone who's had it can attest to the fact that it affects just about every movement you do. Walking, bending, squatting, lifting anything, even bending down to tie your shoes can be a nightmare!
So what do we do about it? First we have to understand the causes of lower back pain. In short, there are three primary causes of lower back pain. Here they are:
1) TIGHT HAMSTRINGS
2) WEAK CORE
3) TIGHT HIP FLEXORS
So let's start with the first one. Tight Hamstrings are a major cause of not only lower back pain, but knee pain as well. To remedy this, make sure to regularly stretch your hamstrings. How do we do this. One of the best stretches is done by placing your leg on a raised surface and bending forward to try and touch your toes. However there are a few things that must be understood for any type of stretch.
First, make sure that your leg is NOT locked. It should be straight, but not totally locked. Second, hold the stretch for about 20 to 30 seconds. Less than 20 seconds is pretty much useless and more than 30 seconds, while not harmful, will offer no significant benefit over stretching for 30 seconds. Above all, there must be no tension! Just stay relaxed and go as far as you can. You should never stretch to the point of pain. Gradually over time, try to stretch further and increase your flexibility.
Next we have the Weak Core. Anyone who knows me or has trained with me is well aware of the fact that I emphasize core training a lot! In my mind, this is an absolute must. All your strength and vitality comes from your core (Think of your Dan Tien in Chinese medicine and martial arts). and in addition, strengthening it will help prevent back pain. Planks, Mountain Climbers, and other variations are excellent for this.
Finally we have Tight Hip Flexors. This is lesser known than the other two, but extremely important. I once had a man who had pretty much written off 2 years of his life because he believed he was doomed to a life of lower back pain and nothing could be done about it. But after addressing the other two issues and particularly with this one, his back pain has now been almost completely eliminated! Weak hip flexors are rarely a problem since we use them every time we take a step. However tight hip flexors are extremely common, at least as common as having a weak core and tight hamstrings. To help with this, get on one knee in a lunging position. Then stretch by moving yourself forward stretching that supporting leg and hip flexor.
So there you have it. The three causes of lower back pain and the ways to deal with them. By understanding the causes of lower back pain, it is far easier to figure out a plan to rehabilitate it and/or prevent it. After all, you know the old saying "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure".
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WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE MINDFUL AND HOW CAN IT IMPROVE YOUR HEALTH?
Have you ever eaten a bowl of popcorn while watching a movie and when you got to the bottom of the bowl you wondered where it all went? Or maybe you were reading a book and when you finished a page you realized you had no idea what you just read? These are examples of being mindless. Your mind wanders and you aren’t focused on what you’re doing in the moment, whether the moment is for just a minute or two or half an hour or longer.In this busy, fast-paced world, it’s easy to zone out and let your mind wander to another place, but research shows that being mindful is a way to improve your health and wellbeing.
What is mindfulness, in what ways will it make you a healthier person, and how can you become more mindful? Keep reading to find out.
Being mindful means your mind is fully aware of what you’re doing in the moment. When mindful, you’re fully in tune with your thoughts and feelings, as well as what’s happening in your surrounding environment. Your mind is not thinking about the past or the future, but the present.
Mindfulness is the opposite of mindlessness. You’re not running on autopilot when mindful, but you live life on purpose in the moment. You don’t think about the “what ifs” and the “should haves,” but remain focused on the here and now.
So why be mindful? Isn’t it okay to zone out every once in a while and think about things other than what’s right in front of you? Of course it is! That said, millions of people have found that practicing mindfulness has helped them overcome a wide range of mental and physical health conditions.
Take negative emotions for instance. Stress, anger, anxiety, fear, and depression may plague you, but mindfulness is a way to fight those emotions. With mindfulness, you’re able to identity your emotions, accept them, and learn ways to cope in the moment, whether it’s through relaxation techniques, meditation, or just clear thinking. Emotions lose their power over you when you remain calm and focused.
People who suffer from disease find that mindfulness helps their symptoms become more manageable. Whether you have cancer, back pain, fibromyalgia, heart disease, or irritable bowel syndrome, being mindful can improve your quality of life. It allows you to focus less on the pain and more on the good things in life.
As a major perk, mindfulness has been found beneficial for those struggling with weight control. Instead of worrying about past diet mistakes, negative emotions that lead to overeating, or your appearance, mindfulness keeps you in the moment. You’re better able to stop eating when you feel full, make wise food choices, and have a healthy relationship with food and your body. Many people find that mindfulness is more effective than any diet they’ve ever tried.
Not struggling with weight or disease management? Being mindful is still for you. Anyone who has trouble concentrating, focusing on the task at hand, or remembering details will find that being mindful helps increase awareness, attention, learning ability, and mental function.
Want to become more mindful? There are a few ways to go about it. One way is through breathing exercises. As you breathe in and breathe out, think about breathing in and out, and only think about breathing in and out. Remember to breathe in and out with the nose. Unless you eat with your nose, don't breathe in with your mouth. Do this for several minutes each day to teach your mind to focus on the present.
A second way to become mindful is to release the tension in your body. Lie down or sit comfortably, breathe deeply, and slowly relax each part of your body, from the tips of your toes to the top of your head. You’ll feel the pent up tension and stress drain out and calmness take over.
Many people practice meditation to become more mindful. Be still and quiet for a few minutes each day or hour. Focus on the present and let your negative thoughts fade away. Eventually meditation will simply become a part of you to the point where you don't need to think about it at all. You will just be in a state of meditation all the time, but this takes a long time to develop.
Whatever technique you use to be mindful, finding a way to focus on the here and now will do wonders for your sense of calm and control. So become more mindful and reap the rewards for years to come!
BEAT IT WITH YOUR MIND
Have a bad habit you’re struggling to beat? It may be time to become more mindful. Since mindfulness can help overcome addictions, it can also help you with whatever bad habit you want to kick.
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When it comes to building arms, there's no need to get fancy. Just pick a good exercise for the biceps, one for the triceps, and work the m hard! Preferably in a superset. That's where you do one exercise and then immediately do another exercise. After this a short rest is taken and then the superset is repeated for the desired number of sets.
In this case we have the Rotating Dumbbell Curls and the Bench Dips for the triceps. For the Curls, it's important to remember to rotate or supinate them on the way up. This action is also a function of the biceps. Remember when Bowzer used to sing "Good Night Sweetheart" on the old show "Sha Na Na"? If so, you 'll know exactly what I'm referring to.
As for the Bench Dips, start with the bent legged version to see how you handle it and be sure to have your back close to the bench so it grazes the back of it. Don't be too far away from it since it will shorten your range of motion.
Overall, a great combo and one that will help build those arms and tighten up those flabby triceps everyone complains about!
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There's a big difference between breathing simply to stay alive and breathing to maximize your fitness efforts!
First of all, most people breathe with the chest which is shallow breathing. Unfortunately this is an extremely poor way of breathing and you'll only be able to reach half (or even less) of your potential! To breathe properly it must be done with the stomach. This is sometimes known as Diaphram Breathing. And to maximize it even further, gently touch your tongue to the roof of your mouth. Doing this will facilitate the deep stomach breathing.
Now to add even more to it, there is a fantastic exercise from the Chinese martial arts called "The Dragonback" which coordinates entire body movement with the breathing. Watch the video to learn more about it!
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These Battle Rope exercises are simply awesome! You may have seen these before, but been unsure of how to use them. Look no further than these 2 killer moves to get started!
First we have the Rope Waves With Sidesteps. The regular Waves is probably the first exercise most people do with the ropes. But adding the sidestep will add more cardio, more coordination, and even more conditioning than is already present with the regular Waves!
Second, we have Power Jacks. I have renamed them Terminator Jacks however. I really like the sound of that! Anyway, unlike a standard Jumping Jack, Terminator Jacks involve bending your legs and compressing your body in the bottom position. THEN, explode upwards while holding the ropes. By doing this you'll be developing more explosive strength as well as additional shoulder work!
So if you've been thinking of using Battle Ropes, give these exercises a try. You won't be disappointed!
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My first shipment of books arrived by UPS and my teacher and trainer, Sifu Paul Stiles was there to grab the first copy!
Words can't express how grateful I am to him for all the lessons he taught me. All the years of blood, sweat, bruises, punches, kicks, conditioning, etc. has taught me so much about myself and ultimately how I am able to help others.
In addition to this, he has also provided guidance, love, and respect as is traditionally the role of a Sifu (Chinese martial arts teacher). In fact, his teachings in large part formed the basis of my book.
Looking forward to getting my message out there! If you'd like to get a copy of my book "CENTRELINE : Live, Focus, Breathe", click the link below!
Your eyes feel heavy, you have no energy, and you constantly yawn. Maybe you stayed up too late watching movies, studying for an exam, or caring for a sick child. The five cups of coffee aren’t doing the trick, and you’re counting down the minutes until bedtime.
Days like this are hopefully few and far between. If they come around more often than you’d like, don’t underestimate the importance of a good night’s sleep. Seven to 10 hours a night is needed for your mind and body to function at their best the next day.
On the days you’re feeling especially tired or fatigued, for the safety and wellbeing of you and those around you, avoid these seven actions.
#1: Don’t Drive
This one goes without saying. Getting behind the wheel when you’re feeling drowsy or exhausted is a dangerous idea. Hundreds of thousands of car accidents happen every year because the driver was tired. On long trips, pull over and take a power nap. Or ask another responsible adult to drive in your place. You may not be tired enough to fall asleep, but fatigue can impair judgment and slow reflexes.