Cardiovascular, or cardio workouts are very important in any exercise regimen. The American Heart Association recommends at least 150 minutes per week, usually broken up into 30-minute increments five times a week.
Cardio workouts include any physical activities that increase your heart rate for a continuous period of time. The longer you are able to sustain the workout, the more beneficial it will be. Cardio can be hard work, but there are plenty of options for beginners and exercise fiends alike. Going for a walk, swimming, jogging, playing sports, or taking a dance class can count as cardio.
Weight Loss and Management
To burn actual fat and drop pounds, your body has to work a lot harder than it did to gain the weight. Typically, it takes a deficit of 3,500 calories to burn just one pound. Making changes to your diet can help, but adding a good cardio workout to your regimen can make all the difference. A cardiovascular workout burns more calories and fat than any other kind of exercise. Just ten minutes a day can improve the likelihood of dropping excess weight and keeping it off.
A good cardio workout routine can improve your heart health exponentially. Cardiovascular exercise trains your heart and lungs, and makes them stronger. Regular cardiovascular exercise improves circulation and lowers blood pressure. As being overweight can greatly improve your risk of heart problems, the weight loss than can occur with a good cardio workout will also greatly improve your heart health.
Cardiovascular exercise greatly boosts your metabolism. This is because your body needs lots of energy to keep up with the demands of your working muscles. The higher your heart rate, the greater the number of calories burned. What’s more, even when you’re done with your workout the higher metabolism lasts for several hours. It’s one reason you seem to have more energy after working out.
Cardio workouts can release stress too. A treadmill, elliptical machine, or stationary bicycle is a great way to take out your frustrations and release tension. Running is often a popular outlet for stress. Cardio isn’t just an outlet for pent-up frustrations, though. A good cardiovascular workout can release feel-good endorphins into your system. People who get regular cardiovascular exercise tend to be in a better mood.
It Can Be Fun
With so many different options, finding a cardio workout that suits you is easy. Many of them are even a lot of fun. Typically, if you find a fun way to get in your cardio workout, you won’t even notice how hard you are working. Playing organized sports is a fun way to get a great cardio workout. Look also for jazzercise or aerobics classes that are high paced and beginner friendly. Try a dance or Zumba class for a really fun and very effective cardio workout.
Incorporating a good cardio workout into your healthy lifestyle is a must for optimum health. With so many beginner-friendly opportunities, and really fun options to take your mind off the hard work, it is easy to get your cardio in.
You’ve paid the fee. You’ve bought the cleats, the uniform, all the equipment, the shin pads – you name it. You shuttled him to and from practice. You cheered him on in the hot sun, you watched him fail in the mud puddle-filled field in that torrential downpour. Now your child wants to quit the team.
We’re trained to believe we’re not quitters. We believe we should stick it out, and so should our children. When is it ok to let your child quit a team sport?
Talk to Your Child
Why does she want to quit? What’s going on? Are kids picking on her? Does she feel unsuccessful? Is she bored? Having discussed these questions, ask yourself what your philosophy is. Is your family a “we don’t quit at any cost” type of family? Depending on the situation, you might want to encourage your child to stick with it.
If your family believes it’s ok to try something, see if you like it and if not it’s ok to move on to something you do, then do that. Other families have a definite “Finish what you start” philosophy. So, for example, if your child wants to quit a six-week session of soccer, consider encouraging her to keep with it until the session is over. Then she can move on.
Consider What You Want Your Child to Take Away from This
Is the take-away that, “gosh, martial arts was a lot of work and somewhere around brown or red belt I really wanted to give up, but my mom made me stick with it and now I’m a black belt – look what I have achieved”? Or is it, “I learned some cool self-defense moves but I don’t want to do this four nights a week for the next three years because I want to take guitar lessons”?
Whatever you decide, realize this will be a life lesson for your child. It might give your child the freedom to say, “You know, law school wasn’t what I thought it would be and I’d feel more fulfilled teaching high school history,” or it could mean the difference between completing that PHD and having an unfinished dissertation.
Teaching your child that it’s easy to walk away when things get tough isn’t a good lesson, but teaching a child that she has options and doesn’t have to stick with something that is making her miserable when there are other alternatives is a good lesson.
Whatever you decide, remind your child that it’s important to finish what you start and see things through. People need to be able to count on you and a team needs every member for a reason. On the other hand, if there’s a really good reason your child may want to quit the team, talk it over, consider all sides and make an informed decision.
Deciding when or if to quit a team sport is a tough decision that parents and children should work on together. There are a lot of pros and cons to consider and it’s important to weigh all sides and be sure you’ve been there to watch him or her at games and practices so you understand the situation as best you can. Whatever your decision, go with your gut. Know that your instincts are probably right, and you’re a good parent. Good luck.
1 cup Cheerios cereal
4 tablespoons pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
8 teaspoons raisins
8 teaspoons semisweet mini chocolate chips
Combine the ingredients in a bowl and stir to mix. Separate the mixture into four even servings and each serving will be about 100 calories.
Weightlifting, or weight training, is the physical activity of lifting weights or heavy objects for exercise. Most commonly, weight training is attributed to bodybuilders and athletes. However, there are many benefits to weight training that can be applied to any workout.
* Weight loss and management – When you gain and tone muscle, your body is able to burn calories more efficiently. So weightlifting can help you lose and manage your weight more easily and efficiently.
* Strength training – By training and building your muscles, your body is stronger overall. Your bones will even be stronger; weight training can increase bone density. With stronger bones and muscles, you can reduce back pain, arthritis, and other chronic health conditions.
* Stamina and stability – The stronger you are, the less fatigued you will be during workouts and daily life. People with stronger muscles often have better balance. Even for daily activities, your body’s ability to balance itself properly can be improved, and make falls and accidents less likely.
Better Overall Health
When your body is in better physical condition, it improves all aspects of life. Your daily activities and chores are more easily executed and you are less likely to accidentally hurt yourself. Weightlifting can also have an overall positive effect on your blood pressure. Studies show that people who lift weights have healthier hearts and lower blood pressure. This is because, during weight training, your heart is getting plenty of practice pumping blood to the muscles you are working. When your heart doesn’t have to work as hard to pump blood to where it needs to go, it can lower your overall blood pressure.
Weightlifting sounds more difficult than it is. There are levels of weightlifting and training for everyone at every level of fitness. If you are a beginner, you can start by using your own body for resistance. Lift your own body by doing push-ups (either on the floor, or off the wall for lower fitness levels), or do squats and lunges.
For slightly more resistance, try using resistance bands. These are stretchy bands of tough elastic that can be lifted and pulled in a number of different ways to benefit different parts of the body. Dumbbells and barbells are free weights that come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and weights. As you get stronger, you can increase the amount of weight that you lift. Free weights are easily portable, and can be found in gyms or for home use.
Weightlifting machines are often found in gyms, but can be purchased for home use as well if you have the room. They can be used for weight training at all levels. Weightlifting is certainly not just for bodybuilders. In fact, weight training is an important part of any workout routine. It doesn’t mean you will build huge muscles either, only that you’ll become more toned.
With so many options available for different skill levels, everyone can reap the benefits of adding weightlifting to their workout routine. Of course, any change in activity should be discussed with your doctor, but there are levels of weightlifting for everyone at every level of fitness.
Has your standard garden gotten boring? Are pests invading your painstaking work? Sometimes it’s good to turn things on their head, to see the world from a new angle. Enter the concept of upside down gardening. Upside down gardening is exactly what it sounds like – your plants will hang upside down. Here are some tips about creating your own upside down garden.
Why Upside Down?
* Low maintenance – When you’re growing plants upside down, you don’t have to do any tilling of the soil. No rakes or other large tools are needed. You don’t have to do any weeding. Only your plant will grow upside down in the designated container. Staking becomes a thing of the past. In addition, upside down plants are much easier to water and drainage is readily available. There’s no danger of the fruit touching the soil on the ground because the plant is hanging upside down – it’s not going to touch the ground.
* Great for small spaces – You don’t need acres of farmland for upside down gardening, or even a yard. An upside down garden can grow on your patio, in your kitchen, or anywhere you have a place to hang it.
* Keeps critters at bay – Because the plant is hanging upside down, it is much more difficult to access. With an upside down garden, you don’t have to worry about any bug infestations. Likewise, because of the height, the plant is protected – invasive animals can’t eat the fruit.
What Grows Well Upside Down?
Tomatoes and cucumbers are easy choices, but herbs and flowers also grow well upside down. Beware of overly large tomatoes, which can weigh down the vine. Cayenne peppers, basil, eggplants, squash and beans all work well. Marigolds are also a good choice for the upside down garden.
How Do I Do This?
Organize some containers, potting soil, and plants. Consider the amount of sunshine in your location and take into account the size of the plant when you’re selecting containers.
* Take a bucket and turn it upside down. Using a sharp blade such as an exacto knife, cut a hole in the bottom large enough for your plant to grow through. About 2 inches should suffice.
* Turn the bucket right side up. Poke two holes in either side, and use heavy string or wire to loop three rings through so that you can hang your bucket. Cut a half-inch hole in the middle of a sponge, then cut a straight line from the middle to the edge (it will look like a C).
* Remove a plant (probably 6” would be a good size) from its container and place it through the hole in the bottom of the bucket.
* Put the sponge inside the base of the bucket to hold the plant in place.
* Fill the bucket half full with soil.
* Place a tray under your bucket to catch excess water.
* Water your plant lightly, then fill in the rest of the bucket with soil.
* Hang your plant. Water it thoroughly until water runs out the bottom and then check your plant for moisture frequently.
Rotate your plant clockwise every week to ensure the plant receives adequate sunshine.
* You can even plant other plants in the top of your bucket.
Upside down gardens can be a rewarding way to have maintenance-free gardening, especially for people with limited gardening space. Remember to choose smaller plants so that they fit your container well, and be sure your space has adequate sunshine. In this way you’ll have a wonderful crop of upside down vegetables, herbs or flowers to show your friends.