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Tag Archives: weight control

Improving Your Child’s Self Esteem Through Exercise

Improving Your Child's Self Esteem Through ExercisesBy Lynn Bode

Raising a pre-teen or teenage daughter (or son) is not easy and can cause any parent a lot of stress.  There’s so much to worry about – dating, drugs, alcohol, sex, school grades, just to name a few.  But one crucial element often gets overlooked until it manifests itself in extreme ways (like through an eating disorder). I’m talking about self-image. It’s extremely important that parents ensure that their children have a positive self-image, especially in relation to their body.

The key to ensuring strong self-esteem and a positive body image starts with the parent. If you don’t feel positive about your self-image, then how can you expect your children to? While this is important for both genders, it is especially critical for raising a healthy daughter. And beginning the lessons when a girl is young is imperative, so don’t wait until it’s too late – teaching your daughter to feel good about her body needs to start at a very young age.

Eating disorder experts say girls are developing eating disorders as young as 5 and 6 years old. And a recent study indicated that 70% of the sixth-grade girls they surveyed said they began worrying about their weight between ages 9 and 11. Why are so many young girls thinking that they are fat? Many are obsessing about their weight because they have parents who are preoccupied with their own poor body images.

While the statistics are disheartening, the good news is that there’s a lot that can be done to help our children have positive self-images. And, even small changes that parents make can help. Here are few tips to help your children avoid warped and negative body images:

Establish a “no diet talk” rule. When your children are nearby, DON’T talk about dieting or how fat you feel! This is extremely important. Remember, kids are listening all the time (even when you think that they aren’t – especially then). So, even though asking your spouse or friend “do I look fat in this?” may seem innocent, it can have a life-altering effect on your kids when they repeatedly hear it.

Parents aren’t the only adults that influence their children. Set the “no diet talk” rule mentioned above for all adults that are around your children. This means you shouldn’t allow your friends, parents, siblings, neighbors, or anyone else to talk about being fat or being on a diet when they are around your children.

Set a good example. If your children never see you engage in fitness or if they hear you complain about working out, then they are going to have a negative image of exercise. Let them know that you workout to stay healthy, to be strong and to have more energy and stamina (so you can keep up with them)!

Get your kids involved in sports. Experts say that playing sports really helps build confidence and improves self-esteem (especially for girls).

Teach your children to include physical activity as part of their daily routine. But don’t force them to exercise. Make sure that the physical activity is seen as something fun to do rather than teaching them to think of exercise as a necessary evil. Good activities include taking a nightly family walk, turning off the t.v. and instead turning music on that you all can dance to, or taking a weekend family bike ride.

Try to prepare (or if you are short of time purchase) healthy meals. And teach them the importance of good nutrition. Don’t let them have the misconception that there are “good” and “bad” foods. If a kid thinks that candy is a “bad” food, then naturally they will just want it more. Just try to encourage your kids to eat a balanced diet each day and to eat sugary and/or fatty foods in moderation.

Remember that something as small as talking about losing weight in front of your kids can have very detrimental effects on their self-image as they age. Damaging behavior learned from a parent at a young age can take years for a child to overcome. So, the sooner you start incorporating the tips above into your life, the better for you child. But don’t forget that it has to start with you – make sure that you are incorporating healthy fitness and eating rituals into your daily routine and that you have a positive body image (no matter what your size or shape is)!

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To learn more about workouts for children and teens or to have a personalize fitness program created for your child’s fitness goals browse through our fitness page by clicking here

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The 4 Things Missing From Most Women’s Workouts

If your workouts consist of doing light weights and steady-state cardio, you might be in for some bad news: These things alone won’t likely get you the results you’re after, say experts. To increase your fitness level, burn fat, and improve muscle tone, you’ve got to step up your game.

Here are four things women tend to skip that can deliver serious results.

1. High-intensity training.

All that time coasting on the elliptical at a comfortable pace probably hasn’t done much for your body, says Panama-based trainer Belinda Benn, creator of the Breakthrough Physique home fitness system. In fact, the biggest mistake women make in their training is not exercising with enough intensity, she says.

High-intensity interval training, or HIIT, is typically a 10- to 20-minute workout that alternates short, intense bursts of activity with moderate-exertion recovery periods. “High-intensity interval training  is the best way to improve your overall fitness, burn fat, and stimulate your hormones for a stronger body,” says Benn.

How to tell if you’re training hard enough? Look to your body for clues, Benn says. Good indicators are sweating, increased heart rate, and lactic acid production (i.e., feeling the “burn”) during exercise. Moderate muscle soreness for up to a few days post-workout is also a good sign. “If you feel nothing,” Benn says, “you probably didn’t work out hard enough.”

Heavy Lifting For Women
2. Heavier lifting.
 

 

For most women, a typical weight-training session equals light dumbbell exercises, says Toronto-based strength and conditioning specialist Craig Ballantyne, creator of the Turbulence Training Program. But doing fewer reps with more weight—say, 8 reps per set with a 15-pound dumbbell, instead of 15 reps with an 8-pound one—will burn more fat, he says. Lifting heavier will also increase your strength and muscle definition.

Start by swapping out your normal weights for slightly heavier ones, and gradually work your way up. Most women often worry that lifting heavy weights will make them look big and bulky like men. Unless you are taking Anabolic Steroids and/or Human Growth Hormone it is virtually impossible to grow muscles like men. I don’t care how heavy you lift.

3. Upper body workouts.

Women tend to store body fat around the waist, hips, and thighs, so that’s where they typically focus their exercise efforts—neglecting their upper bodies, Benn says.

But you can’t spot-reduce fat, and sticking with what’s easy can stunt your progress, says Benn. Because you may feel weak while attempting pull-ups for the first time, Benn suggests doing the hard stuff at the start of your workout, “when you’re freshest and feeling mentally strong.”

“Focusing on underdeveloped muscles will improve the contours of your body,” Benn says.

4. Training with a barbell.

Think barbells are synonymous with back-breaking chest presses? Not so. “You can do a tremendous workout just with a barbell,” Benn says. “If you’re holding a bar rather than using two separate weights, it forces you to get your body  in sync.”

Barbells are great for both upper- and lower-body exercises. Balancing one across your shoulders while doing squats, lunges, or walking lunges helps develop posture and balance, Benn says.

If you’re flirting with a barbell for the first time, go as light as you need to. Even 10 pounds is a good start.

Bonus tip:

If you’re worried you’ll bulk up with any of these exercises, consider your body type. Benn says women generally fall into two categories: those who build muscle easily, and those who don’t. If you build muscle easily, she suggests emphasizing high-intensity exercises. If you develop muscle slowly, you’ll benefit from spending more time on heavy lifting.

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To learn more about workouts for women or to have a personalize fitness program created for your weight lost goals browse through our fitness page by clicking here

The Health Benefits of Good Sex – It Does The Body Good

The Healing and Health Benefits of Sex

By Dr Yvonne K. Fulbright

Sex – it does the body good.

Yet most of us are quicker to hit the gym before hitting the sheets when it comes to taking care of ourselves. Believe it or not, huffing and puffing your way through a hot, sweat-inducing sex session may be far more beneficial to your overall health than the time you spend on the treadmill.

As research confirms time and time again, good sex in a healthy, stable, monogamous relationship can only better our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual well being. Sex, in this context, offers us tons of benefits, most of which aren’t touted nearly enough.

Here are just a few benefits:

Weight loss and weight control. Forget torturing yourself with theThe Healing Benefits Of Sex latest fad diet or hours on the elliptical machine when you can burn about 200 calories in 30 minutes of sex! Lovemaking lends itself to improved strength, flexibility, muscle tone, and cardiovascular conditioning. Plus, there’s something super sexy about getting to sleep with your very own “personal trainer.”

Pain management. Forgo popping a pain killer and opt for something a bit more “au naturel.” Sex has been shown to offer migraine and menstrual cramp relief, as well as alleviate chronic back pain thanks to the endorphins and corticosteroids released during sexual arousal and orgasm.

Stress relief. Sex, even if only with ourselves, impacts the way we respond to stress, increasing levels of oxytocin and stimulating feelings of warmth and relaxation. What better way to unwind from a tough day than sharing its most climactic moment with your special someone?

Immune booster. Stop spending late nights at the office. Sex wards off colds and the flu. And sexually active people take fewer sick days, giving the phrase “working late” an entirely new meaning. Bosses, take note.

Better heart health. A little bit of heart and soul in the sack should be part of every doctor’s orders when it comes to cardiovascular care. Sex may help lower cholesterol and the risk of heart attack.

Sex Heals the body. The List of Health Benefits of SexIncreased self-esteem and intimacy. When sex is consistent and involves mutual pleasure, it can increase bonding since the surge in oxytocin at orgasm stimulates feelings of affection, intimacy, and closeness. When spiritual in nature, sex can lead to an even better quality of life and stronger relationship. Is it any wonder that good sexual energy in a positive relationship can make you feel better about yourself, your partner, and life in general?

Sleep enhancement. There’s no need to count sheep when sex, including masturbation, helps insomnia. Plus, making love sure beats tossing and turning your way to zzzz’s.

A better, younger looking you. Sex keeps you looking and feeling younger and, according to some research, may lead to shiny hair, a glowing complexion and bright eyes. This is because it increases the youth-promoting hormone DHEA (dehydroepiandrostone). And feeling more attractive charges your sex life even more.

Mood lifter. Sex releases pleasure-inducing endorphins during arousal and climax that can relieve depression and anxiety, and increase vibrancy.

Longevity. There is a significant relationship between frequency of orgasm and risk of death, especially with men. Men who orgasm two times a week have a 50 percent lower chance of mortality than those who climax one time per month. The bonus: Living longer also gives you and your honey the opportunity for even more lovin’!

Decreased risk of breast cancer. One study of women who had never given birth found that an increased frequency of sexual intercourse was correlated with a decrease in the incidence of breast cancer.

Reproductive health benefits. According to at least one study, sexHealth Sex Benefits of Happiness appears to decrease a man’s risk of prostate cancer, and the prevention of endometriosis in women. It also promotes fertility in women by regulating menstrual patterns.

In a nutshell, the health benefits of sex in a good, solid relationship are practically endless. Yet, in planning our New Year’s resolutions, how many of us are declaring, “I think I’ll have more sex with my lover” in fulfilling any 2008 health and self-improvement goals?

While exercise on a regular basis is important to your health, sex can do so much more for you and your relationship. So before signing any dotted line for a new gym membership, consider how time allotted to an athletic club could be far more effective in your bedroom.

You can get a lot more bang for your buck in the bedroom, double your “membership” benefits, and, with sex breeding the desire for more sex, thanks to a boost in testosterone, it’s a workout plan you’re likelier to stick to.

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