Listening to music while working out in Gym.

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi

Listening to music when you hit the gym to improve your workout isn’t exactly a new concept. But understanding how your favorite tunes enhance your exercise is a little less obvious.

And a recent study found that not just listening, but controlling and creating music in time to one’s pace had an even more profound effect on perceived effort during a workout.

Here are good reasons to rock out during your next gym session.

1. Music is the good kind of distraction.

While the study did suggest there’s more to it than distraction, working out with music did make participants less aware of their exertion. Such a distraction can benefit athletic performance by up to 15 percent, The Guardian reported. The faster the better, according to WebMD: Upbeat tunes have more information for our brains to process, which takes your mind off of that side stitch.

2. It ups your effort.

A 2010 study found that cyclists actually worked harder when listening to faster music as compared to music at a slower tempo. But too fast is no good, either. Songs between 120 and 140 beats per minute (bpm) have the maximum effect on moderate exercisers.

3. Music puts you “in the zone”.

Everyone has that go-to song that gets you “in the zone,” and there’s science to why it works. We associate certain songs with memories, often relating to the context in which we originally heard them, such as the first time you watched Rocky. Channeling that memory — or even just the emotion of the singer — boosts the motivational power of the song, and has been shown to improve physical performance.

4. A good beat can help you keep pace.

The rhythm of your workout music stimulates the motor area of the brain as to when to move, thereby aiding self-paced exercises such as running or weight-lifting. Clueing into these time signals helps us use our energy more efficiently, since keeping a steady pace is easier on our bodies than fluctuating throughout a sweat session.

5. Music can elevate your mood.

An August 2013 analysis found that people often listen to music as a way to change their mood and find self-awareness. Study participants said that listening to music allowed them to think about themselves, who they wanted to be and give them an escape from the present. No matter what happened an hour ago, you can use your tunes to help you escape negativity and power you through your workout — and you know you’ll feel great when it’s over.

6. It makes you want to move.

You really can’t stop the beat! Researchers found that when music possesses “high-groove” qualities, the brain gets excited and induces movement in the listener. Basically, your playlist has the ability to make you move — no matter how much you’re dreading that workout.

 

Do’s and Dont’s of Making Fitness video

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi

If you’ve got a video camera on your smart phone or laptop, that’s all you need to get started with filming yourself. Practice is the best way to learn how to make excellent videos, but there are some tips below that can save you frustration that I went through in the past few years.

Having videos to showcase what you do as a fitness trainer is a great resume piece and can attract new business (if you look good on film). I’m not talking about having a 6-pack or pretty face. What makes a good fitness video may not be what you think…

Whether you’re making freebies for your clients or have larger ambitions, here are some tips I learned from my video editor this year.

DO:
1) Do tape yourself horizontally and slightly off center to stay compatible with YouTube and Vimeo.

2) Do turn off all extraneous noises, especially if you’re not using a microphone. Even the back up drive running for your computer can be heard in the background of a video and be a turn off.

3) Do make sure you’re excited and energetic when you’re about to film, it shows and it’s sometimes more important than the content.

4) Do create a YouTube or Vimeo “channel” to collect all of the videos you make in one spot. Watch their free tutorials to learn how.

DON’T:
1) Don’t over-complicate the videos with digital graphics. Focus on your ability to teach a camera. Hire an editor and add fancy graphics when you’re making the big bucks.

2) Don’t use the first take you film. Keep practicing, but on that note have a limit. You won’t be perfect all the time and the audience likes to see that you’re not (perfect).

3) Don’t have too much in the background. Find a clean wall or area to film. Keep it simple, less is more.

4) Don’t use copyrighted music. YouTube and Vimeo will take the video down if they find out.

Fitness Trainer Job Description

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi

Fitness trainers are passionate about health, wellness and exercise and use their skills to help motivate others in reaching their fitness and weight goals. Fitness trainers, or personal trainers, work with people from many different backgrounds and abilities, from professional athletes to elderly people. A job as a fitness trainer can be rewarding and fulfilling as trainers help others to improve their health through exercise and nutrition.

Job Definition
The definition of fitness trainers and aerobics instructors as explained by the Bureau of Labor Statistics is to “instruct or coach groups or individuals in exercise activities and the fundamentals of sports. Demonstrate techniques and methods of participation. Observe participants and inform them of corrective measures necessary to improve their skills.” Fitness instructors play a significant role in the lives of those who wish to lose weight, get and stay in shape and, in some instances, recover from injury.

Job Details
Fitness trainers have a number of job responsibilities. They should be well-educated in the areas of human anatomy and physiology. Trainers perform physical assessments on new clients and decide on specific goals that the client should accomplish over the course of the training period. Some trainers may suggest ways that a client can adjust his diet to meet his weight or fitness goals. Trainers design and direct workout programs that are tailored to the client’s needs and goals, teach and demonstrate the use of gym equipment, observe the client as he exercises and correct any improper techniques, maintain equipment, administer first-aid if necessary and, in some cases, advise the client in improving lifestyle and diet choices.

Certification Requirements
Personal trainers can become certified by preparing for and successfully taking the Certified Personal Trainer exam offered by the National Academy of Sports Medicine. Other certifications are offered through organizations such as the American College of Sports Medicine, National Sports and Conditioning Association and the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America. The Bureau of Labor Statistics states that more employers are requiring fitness workers and trainers to have a degree in a specialized health field, but this requirement varies with employer. Fitness trainers are typically required to be CPR-certified.

Skill Requirements
Fitness trainers should be self-motivated, energetic, organized and responsible. They should be good communicators and attentive to their clients’ needs, being willing and able to adjust workout programs at the last minute. They should be apt at coordinating schedules and managing time wisely and effectively. Being able to utilize and implement new technology, equipment and techniques is also an essential aspect of the fitness trainer.

Aerobic Trainer

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi

Aerobics instructors choreograph exercise moves and lead classes in aerobic exercise. In addition to teaching fitness students the moves to an aerobics workout, instructors provide the music and complete job requirements as specified by the fitness center in which they teach, such as logging hours.

Instructors are trained to provide basic first aid, should an emergency occur during class. While some fitness instructors are able to secure full-time positions with a gym, many aerobics instructors teach individual classes on a part-time basis, sometimes at a number of fitness centers.

Some hours may be spent in an office organizing health and fitness programs for clients.

Are you having extra protein after workout?

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi.

So do you think that eating more protein after workout would be healthy for you? Do you gulp in more protein after exercise? You are while doing so.

Because new research suggests that not only does excess post-workout protein not really do you any extra good, it might actually be bad for you.

In the study “Myofibrillar muscle protein synthesis rates subsequent to a meal in response to increasing doses of whey protein at rest and after resistance exercise,” researchers looked at the effects of ingesting 0, 10, 20, or 40 grams of whey protein isolate immediately after a weight training workout.

It was found that when it comes to muscle building and muscle recovery, 20g of protein post-workout seems to be the sweet spot. And 40g simply results in increased ammonia production due to higher protein breakdown rates – and all this extra ammonia has to be cleaned up and filtered by your kidneys, putting undue stress on these precious organs.

Approximately 20g of protein can be had from a couple of large eggs, or a 6-8oz portion of beef, chicken or fish, or a couple of scoops of whey protein, or a handful of seeds and nuts combined with a bowl of an amino acid rich grain such as quinoa. So don’t overdo it! More isn’t always better.

Health benefits of chocolate milk after workout

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi.

To get the best results from your training, ensure that your post-workout drink or meal is up to par. After your workout, your body is most receptive to using amino acids to repair muscle tissue, while using carbohydrates to restore muscle glycogen.

One of the best post-workout options is chocolate milk. Most prepared chocolate milk beverages are made with 1 percent or 2 percent milk, but you could also create your own fat-free chocolate milk by adding some chocolate syrup to regular skim milk. This will provide you with the benefits of carbohydrates, while giving you the optimal protein source found in milk.

Do make note, though, that different brands will vary in total calorie content, so even across the 1 percent varieties, the fat content may be the same, but total calorie content (typically ranging from 90 to 200 per 250 ml) will differ.

Here’s why post-workout chocolate milk tops the list when it comes to fueling yourself after a hard session at the gym.

Protein Content

Post-workout chocolate milk is beneficial because of its protein content. Every cup contains between eight and 11 grams of protein, with the Clover and Bravo Foods brands containing the most. Ideally, you’ll want to consume between 15 and 25 grams of protein after a workout, which equates to 500 to 750 ml of chocolate milk.

Also, a study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that, when taken immediately after exercise, milk-based proteins promote greater muscle protein synthesis than soy-based proteins.

Finally, another reason why post-workout chocolate milk is beneficial is because cow’s milk contains about 80 percent casein protein content and 20 percent whey protein content. This is ideal because the whey protein is fast-acting, allowing amino acids to get right into the muscle tissue, while the casein protein is digested slower, providing a steady stream of amino acids over a lengthier period of time.

Carbohydrate Content

Turning to post-workout chocolate milk immediately following your lifting sessions is a smart move because of the types of carbohydrates it provides. The total carbohydrate count will vary depending upon the brand you choose, with most coming in around 20 to 25 grams of carbohydrates. The highest carb count is found in Hershey’s 2 percent Chocolate Milk, which rings in at 31 grams, while Hood’s Calorie Countdown 2 percent Chocolate Milk has the lowest carb count (5 grams).

This sugar will cause a spike in insulin levels, driving the glucose molecules into the muscle tissue and replenishing the energy stores for your next workout. Without this insulin spike, you’re going to be looking at a slower recovery period, which could mean more time out of the gym.

A study by the International Journal of Sports Nutrition had subjects perform three interval-style, exhaustion workout sessions on separate days, and then monitored the recovery that was demonstrated. The subjects consumed either chocolate milk or a carbohydrate replacement fluid post-workout.

Chocolate Milk

It was seen that after the recovery period was over, those who were drinking post-workout chocolate milk showed enhanced performance between the interval sessions, indicating that the carbohydrates in chocolate milk were doing a better job in recovery than the carbohydrates in the replacement beverage.

Calcium Content

Finally, drinking post-workout chocolate milk is a smart move because of its calcium content. Calcium is one of the minerals that plays a critical role in the “power stroke” – when the individual muscle fibers generate tension through a cross-bridge cycling pattern, causing contraction to take place. The calcium ions are what bind to the plasma membrane and send one of the first signals to stimulate the power stroke. So, without enough calcium ions in the body, this process will not take place optimally.

By drinking post-workout chocolate milk you will increase your daily calcium intake, and increase the likelihood of an optimal power stroke. Most brands average between 300 and 400 mg of calcium, but if you opt for Hershey’s Chocolate Milk, you’ll get 500 mg per cup.

Milk it

Chocolate milk has a bad rep for being full of sugar, but perception is quickly changing and people are turning to it after their workout sessions. So, there’s no need to spend tons of money on mixing up some fancy post-workout beverage – consider using simple chocolate milk instead.

5 Best full body exercise

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi
Edited: Kartikeya Chaturvedi

We learn that there is one distinct similarity between both fat-burning and muscle-building goals: They each require the use of full body, multiple-joint exercises that activate many muscles at the same time.

When it comes to full body exercises, some are more effective than others, so in this article, you’ll learn the 5 full body exercises that get you the most results in the shortest period of time.

The 5 Best Full Body Exercises

#1: Turkish Get-Up
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I have no idea from where this name “Turkish” came from. But the “Get-Up” part is easy to understand once you’ve tried this move.

To complete a Turkish Get-Up, you lie on your side, with a dumbbell in one hand. The dumbbell should be held out at arm’s length. From this position, you simply stand, while keeping the dumbbell overhead at an arm’s length. This means you only have one arm and two legs to help you both stand and push the weight of that dumbbell up as you stand.

This exercise can be difficult to learn, but if you can do 3-4 sets of 5-10 Turkish Get-Ups per side, then you are probably in pretty good shape!

#2: Swing Squats
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For this exercise, hold a dumbbell or a kettlebell down by your feet with one outstretched arm, then drop into a squat position with your butt pushed behind you, your back straight, and your heels firmly planted. Now, stand about halfway up as you begin to swing the dumbbell up, quickly reverse direction and drop down into a full squat position again, then powerfully stand as you swing the dumbbell overhead.

If you do this exercise as explosively as possible, which I highly recommend, you will find that your heart rate will get very high with just a few repetitions, making the swing squat both a cardiovascular and strength building exercise.

#3: Medicine Ball Slams
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This is a great stress-relieving exercise, and also helps to build power and athleticism in the upper body, core, and legs. It is also a very easy full-body exercise to learn.

To do a medicine ball slam, you simply get a medicine ball (those big heavy balls you can often find in the corner of the gym), raise it overhead, then swing your arms down as you release the ball and slam it into the ground as hard as possible.

As you can imagine, this can be a loud exercise, so you may want to find a private area of the gym (like an empty group exercise room) and you will also need to be careful not to let the ball bounce back up and hit you in the face!

#4: Burpees (also known as Squat-Thrust Jumps)
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As an infamous exercise used by fitness bootcamp instructors, the burpee is one of those movements that you can love to hate. It will give you a full body workout in a matter of mere minutes, but also requires a great deal of focus and intensity.

Here’s how to do a burpee: from a standing position, squat down, put your hands on the ground, kick your legs out behind you, do a push-up (optional), then kick the legs back up into a squat position, stand and jump as you swing your arms overhead. If you’re an advanced exerciser or want to add even more “oomph” to this exercise, you can wear a weighted vest as you do your burpees.

Most burpee workouts involve doing a series of 10, 15, or 20 burpees as part of a full body weight training or body weight circuit, but you can do just 1-2 minutes of burpees in the morning as a fantastic metabolic booster to jumpstart your day!

#5: Deadlift-to-Overhead Press
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The premise of the deadlift-to-overhead press is fairly simple: you pick a heavy object off the ground and lift it overhead. The object can be a dumbbell, barbell, kettlebell, medicine ball, sandbag, or, if you’re working out with a partner, even another person!

When you pick the object off the ground, which is called a deadlift, you’ll need to have good form: looking forward with your knees bent, butt out, and back straight.

You then stand, and as you stand or after you are in a standing position, hoist the weight overhead – using your hip and leg muscles to assist your upper body with driving the weight up.

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5 New Fat Burning Exercises

Blog by: Suryakant Tripathi.

Do you regularly do exercise but still you aren’t able to burn your fat? So you need few new sets of exercise that would surely burn down your fat and prove effective.

Here’s a list of few fat burning exercise.

#1: ManMaker

The ManMaker is the only exercise in this episode that actually requires equipment – in this case a set of dumbbells. To do this exercise, get into a push-up position with one hand on either dumbbell, then do a push-up. Next, row with one dumbbell, then row with the other dumbbell. Stand quickly (also called a “clean”) and place both dumbbells on your shoulders, then do a front squat followed by an overhead press.

Return the dumbbells back to their starting position to complete that repetition and get ready for the next repetition. To maximize your results, choose a weight that makes it difficult for you to complete 10 repetitions of the ManMaker. Just 10 repetitions of this potent move can be used for a fast, 5 minute, full body, fat-burning workout!

#2: Breakdance Push-up

This exercise will not only improve your core and upper body strength like a regular push-up, but also will also increase your agility and flexibility – and it doesn’t actually require you to be a professional breakdancer.

Start in a bridge position with your bellybutton facing the ceiling and your weight supported on your hands and feet. Then “flip” to one side or the other, keeping one leg off the ground, and do a push-up. Then “flip” again back to the bridge position.

#3: Sox Squat

The Sox Squat is excellent for forcing your body to attain proper posture, open up shoulder and chest muscles that get notoriously tight when you’re sitting at a computer, and also work nearly every muscle in your body.

Start in a standing position with your shoulder blades squeezed back and your arms overhead and bent at a 90o angle. Then drop down into a seated, squatting position. Next stand and slowly straighten your arms as you stand. The most important thing to do during a Sox Squat is to keep your shoulder blades squeezed back and your butt back behind you. Try 10 Sox Squats, and to make them even more difficult, stand facing the wall with your toes up against the wall as you do the exercise, which will force you to keep your weight behind you.

#4: Skater Squat

Unlike the Sox Squat, the Skater Squat introduces balance, coordination, and agility into the mix.

Start by standing upright and shifting your weight onto your left foot. Then bend your right knee 900 so your right foot is behind you and off the floor. Keeping your left knee tracking over your standing foot, bend your left knee, hip and ankle while slowly lowering your right knee – and your entire body weight – toward the floor. When done correctly, you’ll look just like a speed skater in the final position. When you’ve lowered yourself as far as you can, reverse the movement and return to the starting position.

For starters, try 5 repetitions for the left leg and 5 repetitions for the right leg.

#5: Hip Hinge

Simply cross both hands across your chest, then hinge forward at the hips while looking forward and keeping your back straight. You’ll reach a point at which your hamstrings feel very tight and you can’t hinge forward anymore without bending your back. Once you reach that point, “squeeze” your butt cheeks and use your butt to pull you back into your starting standing position. This exercise is also known as the folded dollar bill or the shadow deadlift exercise.

9 reasons to encourage fitness at work

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Editor: Kartikeya Chaturvedi

As business owners or managers, it is important to remember that our most important assets are our employees! We want our employees to enjoy their work environment, and to bring the best of themselves to their jobs every day. Encouraging our employees to embrace fitness as a lifestyle choice pays off in numerous ways!

Here are the 10 reasons to encourage fitness at work

 

  1. Fit employees are less likely to get sick
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    Fit employees are less likely to get sick. A person who is physically fit is generally more resistant to the “bug going around” than a person who is not fit. Reduced absenteeism and reduced health care expenditures are the result of a fit employee base.

  2. Fit employees are more energetic
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    Fit employees have more energy. One of the many benefits of regular exercise is increased and sustained energy throughout the day. This energy allows the employee to stay focused on the task at handing, bringing the best of themselves to each task.

  3. Fit employees have more self-confidence
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    Fit employees have more self-confidence. A fit and healthy individual tends to have a high level of self-confidence, because they have proven to themselves that they can accomplish what it takes to obtain a level of physical fitness. This self-confidence empowers the employee to challenge themselves, and strive for higher levels of achievement in the workplace.

  4. Fit employees inspire confidence
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    Fit employees inspire confidence. An persona who maintains a high fitness level, tends to be a person in whom others have confidence.

  5. They take on more leadership roles
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    Fit employees tend to take on more leadership roles. Because of the many positive benefits of a lifestyle, a fit individual tends to make a good leader.

  6. They set and achieve goals
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    Fit employees set and achieve goals. Extraordinary fitness often demands that an individual set and reach goals related to their fitness. Learning to stay true to your goals and see them through to completion is a skill that is naturally brought into the workplace. An employee with the proven ability to set aggressive goals, and then REALIZE those goals, is a valuable asset to any organization.

  7. They possess a better attitude at the workplace
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    Fit employees tend to have better attitudes. Fit employees generally “feel good”. They tend to have a physical and mental “balance” that results in a more positive attitude in the workplace.

  8. They are less stressed
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    Fit employees are less stressed. Regular exercise releases the physical AND emotional tensions that life brings our way, thus a fit employee tends to have lower overall stress levels than an employee who does not engage in regular exercise.

  9. A fit employee base presents excellent team-building opportunities
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    A fit employee base presents excellent team-building opportunities. Team activities like softball or tennis are wonderful ways for employees to take their professional relationships to new levels, and discover new ways of working together. Obviously, employees that maintain a level of fitness are more likely to participate in these activities.

    Encouraging fitness demonstrates a concern for employee’s well-being, and pays off! Employees NOTICE when an employer shows concern for the health and well-being of their employee base through a variety of wellness programs. Further, it has been shown that employee turnover is significantly lower among employees that take advantage of wellness program implemented by their employer.
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