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Thursday, October 30, 2014

Eight Week Workout Program

There are a number of ways to engage in an eight week workout program. Whether you are looking to lose weight or get in better shape, there is surely a short-term workout program for you. This is a guide to two of the many available eight week workout programs online, and how you can affordably incorporate a new fitness regimen into your workout life. Always remember to drink plenty of water when doing any workout and to not strain your body more than it can handle.
One of the best eight week workout programs on the Internet is the eight week advanced fitness plan published for free at Ivillage. This plan is ideal for those who already have a regular exercise regimen in their lives but want to lose some excess weight and/or tone their bodies more. There are squats that can be done with dumbbells or canned goods to really help the body shape.
There are both work out at the gym and work out at home choices in this eight week workout program with plenty of variety. There are two rest days and a couple of lighter exercise days, such as walking or an easy cycle ride. Interval training and crunches, as well as options such as swimming, yoga, or aerobics, are included in the eight week advanced fitness plan.
Its mission is to help people lose 10 to 15 pounds and get more on the way to a toned and fit body. The actual workouts are 30 to 45 minutes in length, and require weight training on different parts of the body at least three days a week.
Cardio is also important to the eight week summer slim down. The authors of the plan encourage users to get up earlier each day to do 20 to 30 minutes of walking to avoid having to spend a lot of time trekking to and from the gym. Of course, people who want something more hardcore can participate in aerobics, treadmill running, swimming, or cycling as they wish.
There is also a full meal plan included, which is mostly low-carb. There is one high carb day offered, and then a rest day of dieting. The off day allows a cheat meal and a workout that is an hour cardio of any activity that the user especially enjoys.

. Should You Workout when You Are Sick?

A daily workout can help invigorate you, give you more energy and help you to feel good about yourself. But is it a good idea to workout when you are feeling sick?
Migraine Headaches
Migraine headaches can be debilitating and cause dizziness, nausea, blurred vision as well as a throbbing headache. If you suffer from migraine headaches, the last thing you will want to do is workout when you are in such considerable pain. Take control of the pain before you even attempt to workout, otherwise you will feel even worse if you try to push yourself while you are still feeling unwell.
Menstrual Cramps
A gentle workout can help to ease the pain of menstrual cramps. The key is to do what you can physically bear without exerting yourself beyond the point you can comfortably handle. If you are used to vigorous workouts, keep your workout gentle and slow the pace down a notch if you are working out during your menstrual period.
However, if the menstrual cramps get worse or you start to feel nauseous, stop what you are doing, have a drink of water and a light snack and take something for the pain.
Exercising During a Cold
No one looks their best when they are suffering from a cold. Puffy eyes, a red, swollen nose and pasty skin just make you want to hide away at home and not show your face in public. But working out during a cold does have some known health benefits. Working out during a cold can help to open up the airways and inject you with some much-needed energy, which can help you to fight off your cold more quickly.
Exercise can help you to overcome physical symptoms of conditions such as migraine headaches, menstrual cramps, the symptoms of the common cold and other ailments. However, when you are feeling unwell, do not force yourself to push through the pain barrier in order to reach your daily fitness goals. Adjust your workout routine, take it slowly and stop what you are doing if your symptoms persist or get progressively worse.

Top 5 Total Gym Workout Tips

The Total Gym is a great piece for your home. You can easily lose weight, get in shape and store it in small places. Using the Total Gym is easy from the start, but no matter if you are a Total Gym beginner or a Total Gym veteran, a few tips along the way can increase your results, motivation and maximize your safety during your workouts. Remember - just because Chuck Norris can do it while talking and breathing normally on the commercial, doesn't mean it's that easy!
Warm-up Prior To Your Total Gym Workout
Even if it's just walking around the house for a couple minutes, your body needs to be warm (aka circulating blood) to your muscles prior to your Total Gym routine. In addition, it will prevent injuries and get your in the mood for your Total Gym Workout
Do A Warm-up Resistance Level In The Beginning
Yes, you may be able to do a high incline level on the Total Gym, but starting at that point is not the most effective workout for your body. By doing a set of 20 repetitions or so on a lower level, your muscles have a chance to stretch out and prepare for the more difficult sets.
Don't Use Momentum
Momentum is a dirty word in the weightlifting world because you can definitely get hurt. Even without injuries, you are not getting the most work out of each repetition by bouncing at the bottom or snapping your joints at the top of each movement.
Slow and Steady Wins The Race
Just like the tortoise and the hare, the goal isn't to do 10-12 repetitions as fast as possible. Yes, you want to move from exercise to exercise quickly to keep your heart rate up, but during the sets, a smooth, controlled movement is best.
Challenge Yourself
Any exercise that uses your own weight as the resistance is very humbling. We should be able to move our own weight around easily, right? There are tons of ways to challenge yourself continuously on the Total Gym. For example, changing the resistance, switching up the angles in which you move and lowering the time you rest in between sets.
A little tidbit - your body recovers most from an exercise (or period of exertion) in the first 7 seconds after the movement is complete. The last 20-30% could take days. Your muscles are resilient in the short term and can take a pounding when done smartly and carefully.

How to Warm Up Effectively Without Jarring Muscles

An effective warm up gets the heart pumping and the blood flowing, in preparation for a workout session. However, improper warm ups can lead to painful, jarred muscles. What is the best way to warm up without causing injury?
Get Your Heart Rate Up
Start off by spending a few minutes getting your heart rate up. Get your heart rate up by jogging on the spot, running up and down the stairs, using a skipping rope or doing jumping jacks until you feel out of breath, but not so worn out you cannot catch your breath or you have pains in your side. This will help get your heart rate up quickly and prepare your body for the intensity of working out.
Careful Stretching
Once you have increased your heart rate, you will feel warmer and more energised. Stretch all major muscle groups that you will be using in your arms, legs, torso and back so that you do not jar your muscles during your workout. But do not stretch beyond your pain threshold. Stretching prepares the body from injury.
However, if you stretch too far, you will end up with a different kind of injury, as you nurse torn ligaments and tendons instead. Beginners should not stretch their body too far, but work up to deeper stretches, which will come with time. As your body gets used to the workouts, you will also become supple, making it easier to stretch further.
Spend Adequate Time Warming Up
A common reason for jarred muscles following a workout is inadequate time spent warming up prior to the workout. Make sure you spend at least 5 minutes warming up correctly, rather than rushing through the warm up in order to start the workout session. If you do not spend enough time warming up, you could end up very sore and in a lot of pain the next day.
Warming up should not be rushed. Start by getting the heart rate up and carefully stretching the major muscle groups that you will be using during the workout. Finally, spend adequate time warming up so that you can best prepare your body for the workout without sustaining injury.

A Review of Extraocular Muscles

Strabismus, or an eye that is turned, is often caused by a weakness in one of the six extraocular muscles that allow the eye to move in many directions. These muscles are attached to the eye itself and surround it...this is the reason contact lenses can't get "lost" behind the eye. Each muscle has a specific function, and this is a review of these functions.
There are two types of intraocular muscles. The rectus muscles move the eye in straight, primary motions or gazes...up, down, left or right. The oblique muscles rotate the eye as well as help move the eye in each of the four primary gazes. Some of the muscles have secondary and tertiary actions as well, and are innervated by different cranial nerves.
The medial rectus muscle is responsible for lateral movement of the eye, inward toward the nose. This is its only action. It is innervated by the third cranial nerve. The lateral rectus muscle is responsible for moving the eye laterally as well, but in an outward direction. It is innervated by the fourth cranial nerve.
As an example, when using the eyes to look straight off to the right, the right eye is using the lateral rectus muscle as it moves outward while at the same time the left eye is using the medial rectus muscle as it moves inward. Both eyes are moving in the same direction but using different muscles to do so. A weakness in one of these muscles will cause an eye to stay turned in, or out.
The superior rectus muscle is attached to the top of the eyeball, and its primary function is to allow the eye to elevate, or look up. It is innervated by the third cranial nerve. The superior rectus muscle has both a secondary and a tertiary function...rotating the eye inward and moving the eye inward.
Remember that inward eye movement is primarily controlled by the medial rectus muscle. The inferior rectus muscle is attached at the bottom of the eyeball, and its primary function is to allow the eye to depress, or look downward. It is innervated by the third cranial nerve as well. The inferior rectus muscle has both a secondary and tertiary function as rotates the eye outward and moves the eye outward, though the primary muscle responsible for this action is the lateral oblique.
The superior oblique muscle, attached at the top of the eyeball, is innervated by the fourth cranial nerve and its primary function is to rotate the eyeinward, toward the nose. The secondary function is moving downward; the tertiary function is moving outward. Remember that the downward motion is primarily controlled by the inferior rectus and the outward motion is primarily controlled by the lateral rectus.
The inferior oblique muscle, attached at the bottom of the eyeball, is innervated by the third cranial nerve and its primary function is to rotate the eye outward. The secondary function is moving up; the tertiary function is moving in. Remember that the upward gaze is primarily controlled by the superior rectus muscle, and the inward gaze is primarily controlled by the medial rectus muscle.

Shape Up and Get Your Muscles Ripped

If you're here because you happen to be unhappy with the way you look and wish to create some good muscles safely and successfully then you definitely has arrived at the best site.
If you are not following the 4 steps below then you are not going to maximize your muscle development by unlocking its true potential.
Go to the fitness center at least 3-4 times a week to build those muscular tissues and make sure you hit those reps with plenty resistance and tension. After which you should let your muscle tissue relax and increase its means of nutrition.
The human body reacts in this way simply because it desires to avoid anxiety. This allows it to improve your muscular tissues in a subsequent time. Without suitable nutrition and sleep your muscle groups will not increase.
Make sure you eat at least 5 times a day be certain you even it out by following this example. What you consume in your body is incredibly vital when constructing muscle tissue. The ideal intake is 40% carbohydrates, 30% proteins and 30% fats.
Over half of your meals must be large meals, for in alternative sit back and enjoy you some liquid meal alternative shakes. Buy some of these meal substitute shakes for it is an effortless way for your system to take in all the nutrients you need when creating muscle tissues.
Make sure you use a couple of those days just for lifting weights. This is one of the most typical errors folks do when trying to create large muscle groups. Once you finish your workout make sure you restore your muscles by relaxing your muscle tissues days in between workouts.
If you don't do this you may have a higher chance of injuring yourself and most likely won't have the muscles grow and will turn out to make your muscles weaker and weaker only destroying your muscle tissue. Bear in mind that in case you get an injury make sure you take a break lifting for a number of months.
Stay away from health supplements products that are not at least 3 decades old. When you're trying to construct muscle groups you have to consume a ton of meals because your system will burn a great deal of power to let the muscles grow, it can be difficult to take in the necessary nutrients so you may need to substitute the normal food with health supplements just as you do the shakes in the above paragraph for this will make it much easier. New supplements always come out and get a ton of hype by magazines and most of them don't last because people won't buy it if it does not work.

Which Muscles Burn the Most Calories During Exercise

Some muscles burn more calories than others. Or, to put it another way, which muscles use the most calories during exercise? I'm a certified personal trainer. If you want to use up a lot of energy during exercise, there are indeed certain muscle groups to focus on.
These are the muscle groups in the legs. Actually, exercises that simultaneously recruit the buttocks muscles and those in the upper legs will use up the most calories, if done intensely, relative to routines done with equal intensity for other body parts.
In other words, strenuous weighted squatting will require more energy than strenuous bench pressing or cable triceps push-downs.
The larger the muscle, the more energy it requires; that is, the more calories are burned while this body part is being exercised. But again, realize that intensity is a factor. Certainly, a lame set of leg presses won't require as much energy as will a brutal set of chest presses.
When intensity or exertion level is a constant, it is the leg/buttocks muscles that burn the most calories.
Which begs another question: Which exercises, involving the legs and buttocks, burn the most energy? Again, when intensity is equal across the board, the one routine that gets the most votes for requiring the most metabolic work are squats with a free barbell.
However, some may disagree and argue that barbell deadlifts require the most energy output. Squats can also be done in different ways, such as holding heavy dumbbells straight at one's side. Go deep and spring back up each time, and you'll burn a ton of calories, compared to stepping up and down on a stool for the same length of time.
In summary, the muscles of the legs and buttocks burn the most calories. These groups are recruited while squatting, deadlifting, leg pressing and lunging. However, lunges will burn quite a bit of energy only when they are heavily weighted. Lunges without weights are more of an aerobic activity, in which you're able to maintain this activity for a number of minutes, and these don't burn nearly as many calories as lunges done while holding heavy dumbbells, especially deep lunges.
Next on the list are the back muscles, which is why pull-ups and wide-grip rows burn many calories. So do other back exercises like chin-ups, lat pull-downs and bent-over rows. Back muscles are the largest in the upper body.
In third place for burning calories are the chest muscles. So, it's legs/buttocks, back, and chest. Focus on these body parts if you want to burn as many calories as possible.

Building Muscles

Don't believe me? Then use yourself as an experiment. If you're super skinny and can't do one pull-up, then watch what would happen when you're able to do 20 pull-ups. There is no way that your body won't get more muscular. Or, if you're only able to bench-press 60 lbs, there is no way your body could remain the same if you've progressed to benching 300 lbs.
Now, not everybody is going to look exactly the same. The skinny guy won't look as hulky as someone who naturally has a wider frame or more muscle mass. However, BOTH will see major muscular growth as long as they are consistent with their program and frequently progress by challenging themselves.
When you challenge yourself, you give your muscles reasons to grow. When you're consistent, you'd be sure that you WILL see results within a relatively short time. Those who aren't consistent would take months, even years, to see growth. Those who are consistent are the ones seeing results within a matter of weeks if not months!
I take myself as an example. Back in college, I was able to lift 70 lbs. Fast forward that 10 years later. I still found myself ONLY lifting 70 lbs. Needless to say, I was only SLIGHTLY more toned than I was back in my college days! What's up with that??? I'll tell you: inconsistency.
No progression was involved because I wasn't even being consistent. In order for progression to work, you need to be consistent. How could I move on to lifting 80 lbs if I was only able to lift 70 lbs? How could I do one-arm push-ups if I could barely do regular push-ups? If you aren't consistent, you can't progress, and no progression means no results.
So, don't look for the fastest, easiest way to gain muscles. There are no secrets to building muscle. Just be consistent and progress. You WILL see results guaranteed!

. Secrets to Building Muscles!

So, what's the secret to getting a muscular body? Consistency
And what is consistency? This means doing something over and over again until you get results. Without consistency, you'll get nowhere in life.
And really, the secret to building muscles is that simple. Just be consistent in what you're doing.
This means that if you're regularly lifting heavy weights, then continue to lift heavy weights. Or, if you're lifting lighter weights, then continue to lift light -- as long as you're lifting until you can't lift anymore. Otherwise, your muscles won't benefit.
This means that if you're taking a weight-base exercise class such as Les Mills BodyPump, or any free-style sculpting class, then you need to continue doing so and continually challenge yourself.
This means that if you're doing boot camp, then continue doing boot camp.
This means that if you're doing only body-weight exercises, then continue to do so.
It's all about consistency! When people say that they've done everything to gain muscle with no signs of improvement, I'd guarantee you that they aren't consistent. Why? Well, just think of the typical person who wants results fast and can't wait for anything. They try something for a while, see little results, and quit. Of course they would be complaining that they haven't seen results!
Think about this. I grew up in the ghetto. You have guys who can't afford a gym membership fee, but they are walking the streets looking like hulks! I'm pretty sure they don't have a specialized diet. The guys in prison don't have any specialize programs. They just lift! And you probably know a few people who have no knowledge of building muscles besides the fact that they have to lift weights. And they are walking around more buff than you!
What is their secret to getting muscles? They just kept doing what they did until they saw results!
But with consistency lies another secret: progression.
This means not only doing the same thing until you get results, but also to continue to challenge your body as you keep doing the same thing.
This means that if you are able to do 10 push-ups without breaking a sweat, then you need to do 15 push-ups. When that becomes easy, then do 20. And so on. Or, instead of doing 20 fast push-ups, try doing 10 slow push-ups
When that becomes easy, do more slow push-ups. Or, do a different set of push-ups such as tricep push-ups and diamond push-ups. Heck, go for doing one-arm push-ups!
What's going on with this progression thing? When the body senses that it's going to be challenged, it would make adaptations by activating more nerves for muscle contractions and forming more muscle fibers. As long as you keep progressing to newer, more challenging exercises, the muscles will continue to adapt until you're the one walking around showing off the guns!

Understanding the Core Muscles

Core muscles are not just the glamour six-pack we all see in the airbrushed photos lining checkout counters across the nation. No, they actually comprise many more unseen muscle groups, and their overall development is crucial to a person's long-term health and well-being.
For years, people, from ordinary folks doing home workouts to trainers pushing clients in the gym, have slaved away with leg lifts, side bends, and crunches, all in a grand effort to strengthen the core of the body. Yet, as well intentioned as they all might be, the truth is that they are only targeting the "show me" parts.
If you want to see people who truly understand core strength and development, look no further than yoga practitioners and dancers. Neither will have bulky abdominals that look perfect at the beach, yet both will have strong cores that provide them with superior strength, flexibility, and posture.
So, to get a handle on the "what" and the "why", see below.
The Muscles of the Core
Rectus Abdominus: These are the "beach eye candy" muscles that sit just beneath the skin in the front of the stomach area. All the crunches you do try to make the six pack as visible as possible. They are the most obvious of the core muscles, but do not make the mistake that they carry the most importance. You can make this area stronger by doing a variety of exercises from basic crunches and traditional sit-ups to hanging leg raises and leg lifts.
Erector Spinae: A group of three critical muscle that run along the spine from the neck to the lower back. Important muscle group in terms of establishing solid posture for a human, the erector spinae can be strengthened by performing good morning bends, deadlifts, and hyperextensions.
External Obliques: The large muscles located on the side/front of the abdomen along side the rectus abdominus. These are the easiest muscles to build when training, and they run diagonally downward from the ribs to the pelvic area, essentially forming a "V" shape. These muscles allow for the spine to rotate strongly, for the abdomen to be contracted, the torso to twist, and the body to bend sideways. Strengthen these by using weight-assisted side raises, side sit-ups, or side plank.
Internal Obliques: Muscles that run deep under the external obliques, yet in the opposite direction. They actually, because of their unique right-angle set up, connect with the lower back; thus, they perform many of the same supportive functions as the external obliques and can be trained in the same manner.
Transversus Abdominus: The deepest running muscle in the core that wraps the sides of the torso and stretches from the ribs to the pelvis. Though not directly involved in rotating the body, it is a vital muscle in terms of respiration, breathing, and organ protection. Strengthened best by using a plank exercise.
While each area can be trained specifically, each copre muscle is in use during any core exercise, so endless hours need not be spent training the area. Consistent activity with good form will show relatively quick improvement. You will see you general health improves and your posture will become noticeably better.

Can Vitamin D Build Stronger Muscles?

Are you getting enough of the sunshine vitamin? Vitamin D deficiencies are common even among healthy young people, and low levels of this vitamin may play a role in a variety of chronic diseases including heart disease, autoimmune diseases, infections, depression, and osteoporosis. Now, a study shows low vitamin D levels may also contribute to weak, flabby muscles.
Can Vitamin D Deficiency Cause Flabby Muscles?
When researchers at the University of California measured vitamin D blood levels in ninety healthy young women between the ages of sixteen and twenty-two, they found that six out of ten of these women had levels that were too low. (less than 29 nanograms per millimeter). They also took measurements to assess the size of their muscles and how much fat their muscles contained. To their surprise, they found that there was a correlation between vitamin D levels and muscle fat in these women. The lower their vitamin D levels, the more muscle fat they had.
It's not clear how or why a deficiency in vitamin D would lead to weak, flabby muscles. Deficiencies in vitamin D may cause muscle weakness and an increased risk of falling, especially among older people who often have inadequate levels of this vitamin due to poor absorption. People with vitamin D deficiencies can also have muscle pain and generalized muscle aches, but this is the first study to correlate vitamin D levels and muscle fat.
A Deficiency of Vitamin D May Contribute to Sarcopenia
When muscle tissue is replaced with fat, it leads to a condition called sarcopenia which is common even among people of normal weight - especially older people who are sedentary. With sarcopenia, muscle fibers are gradually replaced with fat. This leads to loss of muscle strength and untoned, flabby muscles - a condition that some refer to as "flabby thin". Exercise - especially resistance training - can offset some of the sarcopenic effect that occurs as people grow older. As it turns out, a deficiency in vitamin D may play a role too.
Will Vitamin D Supplements Build Stronger Muscles?
Can taking a vitamin D supplement reduce the effects of sarcopenia and build stronger muscles? More research is needed to see whether vitamin D in supplement form really helps. It's a good idea for everyone to get their vitamin D level checked and take supplements to boost levels into the normal range - if necessary. On the other hand, no one should take vitamin D supplements for the sole purpose of building stronger muscles.
The best way to prevent sarcopenia and fat, flabby muscles is to do regular resistance training exercise and eat a balanced diet that contains sufficient protein, although people who have a deficiency in vitamin D may benefit from a supplement.

Defining True Core Muscles for Fitness

Core muscles are responsible for holding the body upright and supporting every motion from sitting to standing, running to jumping. Developing core muscles is essential to good physical fitness and prevention of injuries in the gym. When focusing on core muscles it is important to understand the vastness of this muscle group.
The Basic Core Muscles
Basic core muscles include the abdominals and back muscles. These muscles are concentrated in the center of the body. Many people believe stomach and back muscles are the definition of core, but balance and total body support require strengthen muscles above and below body center.
Advanced Core Muscles - Finding Those Hidden Core Muscles
In order to understand just how far core muscles extend, a bit of exercise is required. Using a Bosu ball or two balance discs, stand erect with your hands over head. Slowly squat down until thighs are parallel with the ground.
As you move down, lower your hands to the front of your body. Hold this position for 10 seconds and then stand up slowly while raising your hands back to the sky. Repeat this movement at least 10 times, more if your legs are up to it.
During the movement, more than just the abdominal and back muscles are engaged in balancing the body. The morning following these exercises, most people will feel slight exercise pain in some brand new areas that they never considered part of their core.
Strengthening Core Muscles for Total Body Fitness
Once advanced core muscles are recognized, working out these muscles is much easier. The morning after you may have noticed slight pain in the upper thighs, calves, hamstrings, buttocks and shoulders.
Defining core muscles with these muscle groups included makes all the difference in the gym. Workout programs can be planned based on working core muscles in shifts. Upper body core muscle workouts one day and lower body the next.
Why Work Advanced Core Muscles?
While balance and injury prevention are crucial to total body fitness, the core muscles do much more than balance the body. When the core is strong, extra energy moves from the core out through the limbs of the body. This means stronger legs and arms without having stronger muscles in these areas. Energy literally explodes from the core muscles outward thus strengthening the core muscles will affect every aspect of your workout from cardiovascular fitness to weight training.

Causes of Sore Muscles

Sore muscles have more than one cause and are typically part of any exercise regimen. However, extensive muscle damage can also cause sore muscles and may require medical treatment. The three main causes of sore muscles are lactic acid, delayed onset muscle soreness and muscle strains.
Lactic Acid Burn
Lactic acid forms when there is not enough oxygen to complete the energy conversion process. As blood flows through muscle cells, it carries away lactic acid and waste products while delivering oxygen and nutrients. Strenuously exercised muscles do not have adequate blood flow to remove lactic acid at the rate it is produced. This build up of lactic acid inflames muscles and causes soreness.
Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness
Muscles are usually sore the day after a strenuous workout. This soreness is caused by exercising muscles beyond the their normal limits. Vigorous exercise causes micro tears and bleeding in and near the z-band filaments that keep muscles together. When enough muscles and filaments are damaged, it causes muscles to feel sore.
The repair process begins 8 to 24 hours later, as satellite cells are attracted to the muscle fibers. Additionally, white blood cells and other fluids and nutrients collect around the damaged fibers; this causes swelling. The swelling, in turn, causes sore muscles. Some of the satellite cells fuse to the muscle fibers, causing muscle cells grow in thickness and in number. The process is called delayed onset muscle soreness or DOMS. This muscle soreness, however, means that the muscles are being repaired and growing stronger.
Muscle Strains
Rapid muscle soreness can occur during exercise. However, if the muscle aches when resting, there is pain when stretching the muscle or the muscle weakens, it could be severely torn. If the pain is accompanied by a popping sound or becomes severe, go to the emergency room.
You can treat moderate muscle soreness caused by exercise at home. Reducing these causes of muscle soreness requires the PRICE method. You must "Protect" the muscle from further injury and "Rest" the muscle. Apply "Ice" to the injured area. Apply slight "Compression" with elastic bandages, and "Elevate" the sore muscle to prevent avoidable swelling. If this home treatment does not decrease muscle soreness within a few days, go to see a doctor.
Stretching before a workout, setting limits and building up a tolerance will help prevent muscle strains. Please note that any new sport you take up will probably require you to use underdeveloped muscles; you should build these muscles up slowly to prevent injury. Mild muscle soreness caused by exercise is a healthy response to a strenuous work out. However, you should monitor your soreness to avoid a potential injury.

Most Common Cause of Muscle Twitching

Twitching muscles are very common. Every man and woman experiences muscle twitching. Twitching muscles are most often in the legs, but muscle twitching can occur in the facial muscles, neck muscles, chest muscles and even back muscles.
Muscle twitching usually goes unnoticed unless it's excessive, and/or the muscle twitching causes an entire finger or toe to "jump." Also, muscle twitching can often be clearly seen when it happens, especially if the twitching muscle is in the quadriceps muscles, chest muscles or face muscles. Muscle twitching means things are more normal than abnormal.
Anxiety and stress are perhaps the No. 1 cause of muscle twitching, which is also known as benign fasciculation syndrome. Benign means the muscle twitching will not develop into anything serious. Fasciculation is the medical term for muscle twitching.
Syndrome means that typically, a lot of muscle twitching is also accompanied by muscle cramps, muscle aches and some tingling. But these other symptoms come on after the person starts excessively worrying that the muscle twitching is a sign of a deadly disease.
Anxiety makes muscles twitch. It's that simple. One theory is that in ancient times, early man had to always be ready for action, living in a harsh environment with no modern-day conveniences to protect him. His muscles, his entire nervous system, had to always be prepared for a fight with danger, or for a flight from danger.
In the genes
We are genetically hardwired to physiologically react to a crisis situation. Our muscles are on standby to jump into action. But contemporary stress is different from ancient stress. Today, we don't need to be ready for the charging bison or hissing snake. But just the same, our bodies are under siege by other forms of anxiety: job stress, paying bills, foreclosure threats, protecting teens from drugs and sex, marital problems, traffic jams, business meetings, etc. It's no wonder that our muscles are always jumping.
When we are under chronic stress, our muscles twitch because they think that at any moment, action will be required of them. So they are, in a sense, gearing up for the fight or flight, kind of like a track sprinter dragging his foot backward on the track as he prepares for the race. Anxiety tells the muscles, "Get ready. On your mark, get set..."
But the "go" never happens, because the stress is not of a life-threatening nature (such as a charging bison, falling rock or hissing snake of ancient times). So the muscles remain in idle, like a car at a stop light. The engine is on, but the car goes nowhere. The engine, in this case, is the muscle twitching. They are not relaxed. They are anticipating.
So when you notice a lot of muscle twitching while under stress, realize that this means that everything is working just fine.

Must Release Your Anger and Aggression

Build Something, Anything
When someone you love wrongs you, the anger can fester and that is not good for anyone's health. Sometimes creating something new is a wonderful outlet. This helps you rid yourself of your anger by giving it a name. This type of outlet has created many great works of art. Build a birdhouse or anything made out of wood. Pounding nails into the wood will release some of your anger and aggression.
Get down on your hands and knees and take your aggression and anger out on your floors. Look for a cleaning chore you have been neglecting and give it the scrubbing of a lifetime. Not only will this help release your anger, you'll get something done. Shower grout, shower doors, and kitchen floors are great targets for vigorous scrubbings.
Write It Down
Grab some paper and a pen and write it out. Express your feelings in writing and watch your anger slip away. Write down why you are angry, who made you angry, and what you want to do about it. Just write whatever comes out. It may not be an answer to your problem, but you will feel better with this sort of release. This also allows you to give your anger and aggression a voice, and may help you understand it on a clearer level.
Find a way to relax when anger and aggression get the best of you. Use deep breathing and yoga, or just close your eyes and picture a place you find to be calm and relaxing. No matter what you choose to do, make sure you are taking deep, cleansing breaths. This helps diffuse anger and clears you mind.
Final Thoughts
The way you choose to deal with your anger doesn't matter. What matters is that you do it. Stress caused by anger can age you, make you tired and lethargic, and will stay with you indefinitely if you don't deal with it. You don't want to carry piles of anger around with you. If you do, it will release itself eventually and most likely this will be in a way you will regret

Release Your Anger and Aggression

Anger and aggressive feelings can sneak up on anyone at any time. Even the most laid back folks feel the sting occasionally. There's no way to avoid feeling anger, and you shouldn't. Suppressing it can only make matters worse for you. If you let it build, you're going to blow your stack one day, and it's not going to be pretty.
Instead of suppressing feelings of anger and aggression, you should find constructive ways to release it and let it go. Everyone has different ways of dealing with these feelings, and you should use whatever works best for you. Whether your anger comes from children who won't listen, noisy neighbors, or bigger family or community issues, taking the edge off your steam will help you deal with the situation with a level head.
Count To Ten
It's a cliché, but it works. If you are about to say something in a moment of anger, turn away and count to ten. Most times this gives you just enough time to bite your tongue. Most things said in moments of anger are regretted. Count to ten, take a few deep breaths, and say what's on your mind in a calmer, less angry fashion. You'll be glad you did.
Are you a jogger? Take a quick run around the block when you feel like you might explode. The feel good endorphins associated with exercise will help calm your mood, leaving you feeling less aggressive and more in control of your anger.
Beat Something
For moments of pure rage, take it out on something that you can't hurt. When the worst happens like death, crime, injury, or any other type of deep violation, anger can soar to dangerous heights. You may want to beat the crap out of someone who severely hurt you, but that will only make things worse in the end. Take it out on a punching bag or even your pillow.

Can Acupuncture Treat Migraine Headaches?

Once one is able to get over the initial idea of needles being inserted into the skin, they are then open to the countless possibilities of treatments that acupuncture presents. Used in ancient Chinese medicine for thousands of years, acupuncture has erupted on the western medicine scene over the last coupe of decades.
Acupuncture uses the insertion of needles in certain points of the body to help stimulate responses that are beneficial to the patient. Through acupuncture, anything from weight control, chronic pain, to permanently quitting smoking is possible.
One such symptom that may be controlled through acupuncture is migraine headaches. For those who have never experienced a migraine headache, the symptoms of one may not seem to be as serious as they can be for those who have suffered through one.
Migraine headaches are commonly associated with a pulsating pain in the temporal region of the head, which is often times accompanied by nausea, vomiting, as well as a heightened sensitivity to bright lights. One can see how symptoms such as these can prove to be quite debilitating, especially in a work environment.
Pain medications can offer some relief from migraine headaches, but due to the likelihood of frequent reoccurrences, the use of these medications can sometimes be harmful to the body over an extended period of time. Because of this, some have sought after a more holistic method to relieve or alleviate migraine headaches.
As is the case with countless other ailments, acupuncture has been shown to help reduce, not only the severity, but also the frequency of migraine headaches. Through the use of inserting needles into key areas of the body, acupuncture is able to generate a response from the body.
In the case of migraine headaches, a deficiency in the amount of serotonin flowing in the body may be directly linked to migraine headaches and their occurrences. By using needles, an acupuncturist can locate the area which stimulates the levels of serotonin in your body, oftentimes resulting in either reduced severity and/or frequency of migraine headaches.
Similar to other medications and treatments, patients may experience differing results from other patients who utilize acupuncture for similar ailments. The frequency of treatment may be one such reason for this. Receiving treatments more regularly may produce better results.
It is not recommended to drop one treatment that works for the prospect of another that may work. The great thing about acupuncture is that no side-effects are likely when used along with medication. Consulting a physician is always suggested before undergoing any new treatments.
Other practices, like controlling stress levels, as well as exercise and diet, can help with migraine headaches as well. Since most HMOs now cover at least part of acupuncture treatments, pairing that along with healthy practices and use of prescribed medication, migraine headaches do not have to be as big a disturbance to daily life as they once were.

Coffee, Caffeine and the Heart

Coffee and tea contain many substances, of which people chiefly think of caffeine. Going by the chemical name of trimethylxanthinem, it is the most widely consumed pharmacologically active substance in the world.
Caffeine's role in the human body is mostly to increase alertness by stimulating the central nervous system. An average-sized cup (150ml) of roasted ground coffee contains around 85mg of caffeine while instant coffee contains 60mg, decaf coffee 3mg, bag tea 30mg, instant tea 20mg, and cocoa or hot chocolate 4 mg.
The effect of caffeine on the cardiovascular system, especially the heart, has long been studied extensively. The heart acts as a pump and the heart muscle, or myocardium, has the unique property of automaticity, that is, it is able to contract and relax in an automatic fashion. It also has the nerve that controls the rhythm of the beating heart.
The valves in the hart ensure that blood flows in the correct direction. The myocardium and the nerves respond to a variety of physiological conditions such as emotions and physical exercise via chemical and hormonal transmitters, which stimulate the receptors on the heart. Externally introduced chemicals via injections or by mouth act the same way on the receptors and affect the function of the heart.
The effect of coffee on the heart has been studied in several aspects. First, can coffee induce coronary artery disease? Coronary artery disease is a condition whereby the wall of the artery becomes damaged owing to accumulation of fat and cholesterol (atherosclerosis). This can lead to heart attack and some studies have indeed shown an increased risk of developing coronary artery disease but only in very heavy coffee drinkers.
Second, coffee has been known to induce cardiac arrhythmias or heart irregularity by stimulating the electrical system of the heart. Coffee may increase the heart rate and thereby raise the blood pressure, which is also deleterious to the cardiovascular system. Coffee has also been known to increase one's cholesterol level as well as levels of homocysteine, harmful amino acids that can aggravate atherosclerosis in the coronary arteries.
Numerous scientific studies haven been done to try to study the effect of coffee on all of the aforementioned cardiovascular problems, and there have been conflicting results. So what do we believe? A good scientific study is one that studies a large number of subjects over a long period of time and in which accurate measurements of the effects in the body can be made. The effects must also be consistently reproducible by different researches.
For a week pharmacological agent like coffee, it has been quite difficult to draw firm conclusions in many of the studies. For example a Norwegian study of 38,500 subjects over 12 years found that coffee consumption was associated with increased risk of death from coronary artery disease, but only when nine or more strong cups of Scandinavian coffee were drunk.
In the Nurses’ Health Study in the US in which 85,747 subjects were studied over a period of 10 years, researchers were unable to find any link between coffee drinking and risk of coronary heart disease. In the Scottish Heart Health Study involving 10,359 subjects over a period of almost eight years, it was found that non-coffee drinkers had a significantly higher risk of coronary heart disease than the coffee drinkers, thus suggesting that coffee was good for the heart.

Want to Lose Weight Fast?

If you would like to know how to lose weight , then the 3 most common weight loss mistakes are the very first thing you need to be aware of in order to start losing weight quickly.
Now I'm pretty sure you are already aware of the 'common' mistakes, most people make when trying to lose weight, for example starving themselves (under the mistaken impression, that if the could "just go without food for a couple of days" they would magically develop a body that would make Victoria Beckham proud), or maybe its not drinking enough water, or even buying every new "magic weight loss pill" that enters the market . . .
We all know about those, (and if you didn't know that starving yourself, and swearing of water wouldnt really help you lose weight, well now you do), so I'll just skip over them, and tell you some weight loss mistakes, that you are probably making without even knowing it.
How NOT To Lose 20 Pounds in Three Weeks
Overeating on One meal, then attempting to "make up for it" on the next meal
Well, I've got to give it to you, your motives are good, but gobbling up all you can during lunch, and trying to make up for it by eating sparingly during dinner, actually impedes your weight loss progress and messes up your metabolism, its also one of the main reasons why diets that incorporate starvation methods don't really work in the long run. Now don't get me wrong, you might lose weight at first, but after a few days (or even weeks if you're lucky) your 'lost' weight comes back . . . with a vengeance. So forget about trying to make up for overeating, and concentrate on eating only those foods that'll help you to lose weight.
Not Sleeping Enough
Yes believe it, failing to get enough sleep, is a major factor, most people tend to overlook when trying to lose weight, and the fact is while exercise, diet, and calories are important factors to consider when trying to lose weight, none of this will make much of a difference if you only sleep for 3 hours each day. Keep it in mind that if you really want loses weight for the long term, you are going to have to get enough sleep.A good night's sleep is something you just can't run away from.
Not Heeding The Advice To Eat "An Apple A Day"
"An Apple a day keeps the Doctor away" you've probably heard that said so many times you've come to take it for granted, but an apple a day really does keep the doctor away, not only do apples, not only do apples contain vitamin c, phenols, and phytonutrients, they are also low in calories, and eating an apple when you feel a craving for sugar-rich foods will make the craving disappear, and besides, they taste great!
So there you have it, 3 often overlooked mistakes NOT to make when trying to lose weight. Just remember, when it comes to losing weight, its al really about your attitude, so matter what you do , keep that positive attitude, and Good Luck on Your journey towards long lasting weight loss!

Is There Any Such Thing as Fast Weight Loss?

For those people that want to lose weight, whether they are a couple of pounds overweight or morbidly obese, they want to do it in the shortest time frame possible, with any miracle cure that seems to come their way. These people may find that this quest will not only cost them a lot of money, but will also waste their time and effort and have no benefits from this fast weight loss.
The safest and most healthy way of losing weight is to eat a balanced and healthy diet and to incorporate safe levels of exercise in to your day. This is time consuming, however, and we do not all have the time or the money to join expensive gyms or go running every night, especially if there are mouths to feed and a family to care for.
There are plenty of supplements that you can use to achieve fast weight loss, but some of these may have rather nasty side effects and can be quite expensive. Buying them from the internet is not always a good idea either as you never really know exactly what it is you are buying. The same applies for so called "wonder drugs" that have been proven in studies to increase weight loss.
As a general rule, these things may work for a short period of time while you are taking the supplements or drugs, but once you resume to a "normal" lifestyle, as in stop taking them or whatever, you will soon find that the weight will come piling back on and you will be in exactly the same boat that you were in before.
It is reasons such as these that cause people to become addicted to weight loss drugs or supplements, and this over a long period of time can eat up a lot of money, getting you nowhere. It is unhealthy for your body to lose weight in a fast and unsafe manner, and can cause you to injure yourself or have to deal with awful side effects.
Unfortunately, for all of those people that want to lose weight rather quickly, I'm afraid there is not fast miracle cure and the only way in which you are going to lose weight in a safe manner, without putting yourself in any danger, is to combine a great and balanced diet with a healthy exercise program. It doesn't have to mean hours in the gym, just going out for a brisk walk three or four times per week can make a difference, as will cutting out your weekly take away. Small changes to your diet and lifestyle will make the world of difference and it is this that you should look to when wanting to achieve weight loss.

Comprehensive Weight Loss - Fasting Guide

Body weight is not only a personal issue, but also a medical issue which over the past few years has continued to gain momentum. In an effort to control the spiraling rate of obesity, government agencies, prompted by the medical communities, are introducing new laws restricting the advertising of junk foods or other food products believed to encourage unhealthy eating habits.
Medical studies undertaken all over the world have firmly established that obesity is a fundamental cause of numerous health problems. Diseases like high blood pressure, diabetes, anxiety, to name just a few, have all been directly linked to obesity. Fortunately, the risk can be dramatically reduced simply by staying fit, following a healthy diet and of course, bringing your body weight down to within acceptable limits.
As we know, there are various options available to us in order to achieve weight loss. The first option, which we should all adhere to in the first place, is to establish a healthy well balanced diet. This should at the very least provide our bodies with all the necessary proteins, vitamins and minerals. Of course, in order for a diet plan to be most effective, one has to establish your personal body requirements such as calorie intake, etc. For many of us, seeking the advice of an expert would be recommended.
It is all too common for many people to rush head first into a diet having done no prior research. This attitude can prove to have serious consequences to your health or at the very least, leave you feeling as though you have failed when no achievement has been made. By simply denying yourself regular meals, also know as fasting, will not necessary produce the desired result. While fasting is a very effective diet tool, one is advised to gather adequate information before commencing.
Fasting should be started gradually, eating only fruit at first. While all fruits are healthy, containing a wide range of vitamins and minerals, none are fully or completely balanced. As a result, a 100% fruit diet will not be sufficient for providing all the required nutrients. Persons undertaking such a diet should consult a professional who in turn can give advice on which supplements should be taken to compliment the diet.
Those who wish to loose weight without fasting should become actively involved in a regular exercise or workout program. Such programs will not only encourage weight loss due to an increased metabolism, but they will also improve your general health and well being as your fitness increases.
No matter which method we choose, whether it be fasting or whether it be exercise, a regular intake of water is essential in maintaining a good healthy body. The recommended daily intake of water is eight average sized glasses.

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome

PCOS is a significant cause of infertility. In fact, polycystic ovarian syndrome is the number one cause of infertility in women in the United States.
PCOS increases androgen levels in the ovary, which causes a lack of ovulation, or irregular ovulation. The unnatural level of androgen interferes with the normal growth of follicles, which are cysts carrying eggs (ova) in the ovary. You are born with millions of ova which develop into follicles during normal cycles.
One of these follicles eventually releases the egg (ovulation) creating fertility. PCOS reduces your odds of becoming pregnant by reducing the number of ovulation cycles per year. The syndrome can also cause minor ovulation defects; even cycles that appear ovulatory could be less than ideal for fertility if you are not under treatment.
If you want to become pregnant, options are available. Your treatment plan should be customized to your individual situation. The recent explosion of research in PCOS and its connection with insulin resistance has added more and better treatment options for patients. Here is a summary:
Ovulation rates are up to 90 percent and average pregnancy rates of 50 percent have been seen.
Ovarian drilling
Many women who undergo this procedure will eventually return to having irregular periods.
Diet modification and exercise
An example would be a reduced carbohydrate diet, and regular, structured exercise. Of course, you should consider looking at other reasons for infertility before committing to fertility treatments for PCOS.
A semen analysis (sperm count) is recommended to see if the problem is with the male. For women, a common procedure is to have the fallopian tubes checked with a rapid x-ray screening test called an HSG hysterosalpingogram), in which dye is injected into the uterus and seen to flow out of the tubes on a monitor screen.
Also, a laparoscopy can be performed, in which a small incision is made in the umbilicus and a scope with a video connection is inserted to further evaluate the inside of the pelvis. This is normally a short, sameday surgical procedure performed under general anesthesia

Way to Lose Weight

Take your daily vitamins-it's difficult to get the proper amount of vitamins and minerals that your body needs in our food. So it's important to take a vitamin supplement that will provide for your body's specific needs.
Drink lots of water-water is important to stay hydrated and to flush unwanted chemicals and toxins from our bodies. Herbal supplements and teas can also be natural detoxifying agents.
Exercise regularly-the body is made to move. Exercise is necessary to have a healthy, balanced, and fit body. That doesn't mean marathons and living at the gym! Some form of moderate exercise on a daily basis can improve your health, help you lose and maintain weight, and can give you a sense of well being.
Decrease stress-the medical professionals have targeted stress as a major underlying factor in a wide range of medical conditions. Getting rid of the factors that cause stress is the ideal solution, but it's often impossible to eliminate those factors entirely.
Everyone has to work, and work can often be a big source of stress. But keeping these daily concerns in perspective and trying to maintain a positive attitude can decrease the impact of these stressors on your health. Your mental and emotional health is just as important as your physical well-being.
Balance is Beautiful
The truth is not everyone can be a supermodel, and it's a misconception that we're all supposed to look like them. Beauty comes in all shapes and sizes. Certainly being overweight is unhealthy, but the goal should not just be weight loss. The goal should be achieving a healthy mind and body, which means a balanced lifestyle. If you can change your lifestyle to maximize your health and well being, you'll discover that balance is beautiful.

A Balanced Way to Lose Weight

Quick weight loss plans, diets, and pills all have one thing in common-they rarely work for long. You may see great results at first, but once you stop using these methods, the weight creeps right back again. It's frustrating and depressing-how do you keep the weight off?
The biggest issue with diet plans and pills is that they don't deal with the underlying cause of the weight gain, which is lifestyle. Eating fast or prepackaged food, getting minimal exercise, wallowing in stress, and ignoring the body's need for balance are all part of the inevitable formula for weight gain. If you are really committed to losing weight, you'll have to do the hardest thing of all-change your lifestyle.
Lifestyle Changes that Work
One of the biggest obstacles to weight loss is mental rather than physical. Americans are bombarded daily by propaganda about what the "perfect" body shape and size should be, but very few of the populous actually meet these requirements.
Concentrating on being fit and maintaining a healthy weight is much more important than being thin. Contact your doctor if you're unsure of the perfect weight for your body type.
Once you've decided your fitness goals in terms of weight and shape, the next step is to find methods for accomplishing those goals. The following are some guidelines for reaching your weight loss and fitness goals.
Avoid diets, weight loss plans, and pills-these may have quick results, but they're causing imbalances in your body at the same time, which will make the weight return faster and make it harder to lose weight the next time.
Eat well balanced meals-you weren't introduced to the food pyramid as a child for nothing! Lots of fruits and vegetables, minimal dairy, complex carbohydrates, lean meats, and only sporadic sweets are the way to set the foundation for a healthy body.
Eat smaller portions more frequently-if you can eat five or six small meals a day, this spreads out your caloric intake, allowing your body to use what it needs for energy as the day progresses, instead of getting a surplus of calories in one sitting. A surplus means the body wants to store the excess energy, and that means fat!
Leave at least a couple of hours between your last meal and bedtime-your body slows down when you sleep. Your metabolism lowers and your energy needs are less, so eating a big meal right before bed means that most of the ingested energy will be stored instead of used.

Resources for Cancer Patients

Surviving cancer is a remarkable feat for many of the unfortunate people who must go through the rigors of surgery and then chemotherapy and radiation treatments afterward. The pain and feelings of hopelessness are considered 'normal' during the whole treatment process. However, it is also true that a large part of your recovery depends on the state of mind which you approach it in.
Which is why it's so important to have a support system in place before your treatment, during the course of your chosen treatment methods and especially after all the physicians have finished their work and your body is now considered to be cancer free.
There are many invaluable resources available to cancers survivors today. An organization called Journey Forward has launched a campaign to provide follow up care to cancer survivors. This organization will distribute survivorship kits to healthcare providers and cancer survivors in select states.
There are many new Cancer care connect booklets available to the public that deal with a variety of different cancers including liver cancer. The various treatment options that are now offered and the many resources that are available for counseling, pain management, managing side effects etc
These booklets are very insightful and helpful in your fight against these and other dreaded types of cancers.
There is a new cancer specialty certification recently launched that is being used to train Certified Cancer Exercise Trainers in how to work with cancer patients, including those who are currently undergoing treatment. Since this is a relatively new program it will take a few months before these specially trained exercise professionals are readily available.
There has also been a new pediatric GIST web site launched which offers parents of cancer stricken children advice, resources, counseling and even a social network where they can connect with parents who have children that suffer from the same ailments and receive encouragement and support from each other. Having a child who suffers from cancer can be a parents worst nightmare. Having the resources and support available to get through this time and share with others who have been there before you, can help immensely in overcoming the odds.
The Life Raft group has recently introduced a new e newsletter, this site provides you with access to the latest GIST articles on cancer and cancer treatments as well as the various counseling options that are available