Tag Archives: fitness

Will Yoga Help Weight Loss?

The answer to the question in the title of this article, ‘Will Yoga Help Weight Loss?’, is a resounding ‘Yes’. Yoga will help weight loss and has been proven to do so. Yoga will work on both your body and mind to provide a new and leaner you.

Yoga is well known for it’s abilities to create a wonderful state of relaxation in the practitioner which has been proven to lower blood pressure and many other physical ailments. It is also a great way to remove that excess weight that has been plaguing you for months or years.

The reason that Yoga is such an effective way to lose weight is that it burns calories at a much faster rate. It increases one’s metabolism, thus speeding up the rate at which calories burn.

There are many forms of yoga. Some practices, like power yoga, is a much more active form which will burn calories much faster than other yoga practices like ashtanga yoga. Power yoga though is NOT for the faint hearted. Like all forms of exercise you should check with your family doctor before setting off to engage in a new fitness regime.

It is becoming more and more recognized that overeating is related to our emotional state and our minds. Thus, a quieter mind, brought about through yoga practice will make it less likely that you will reach for that cream cake every time you get the urge.

This is not to say that you have to diet on celery and lettuce leaves. The idea of weight loss through yoga is to become relaxed about this area of your life that it causing you problems. That way you are in a better state to deal with it.

It is said that ‘what we resist, persists’.  So, stilling the mind through yoga will certainly give you a more positive outlook on life and lead to a calmer mind and body.

Now, on to the physical aspects of yoga for weight loss –

It is not difficult to see that yoga exercise will burn those stubborn calories that you have been trying to rid yourself of. Have you watched some of the asanas or poses? Any physical activity at all will help you lose weight but the turning and twisting of yoga helps to break up the stores of fat and rid them through the body’s natural processes.

Don’t let the gentler forms of yoga fool you either. It looks very serene to watch those that have been practicing it for years. It almost looks as though there isn’t much going on. Believe me, you will be surprised at how much perspiration is generated by these simple poses. When I first started off on a half hour yoga regime of simple poses, I was absolutely surprised at how much of a workout I had actually achieved at the end of it.

Things do get easier as you progress and the feeling that yoga gives at the end of a workout is second to none. You WILL get a feeling of achievement and relaxation that you may have never felt before.

Keep at the yoga regime and the calories will surely burn off like you wouldn’t imagine.

Essential Equipment For Beginner’s Pilates

For those who wish to exercise in the privacy of their own home, but do not want to have to buy expensive equipment, a wonderful way to reduce stress and tone muscles at the same time is to purchase a few Pilates essentials to get you to practice Pilates successfully!

As a beginner, the Pilates exercise equipment you will need is just some loose fitting clothes, which are as comfortable as possible in order to allow you to move easily. Another essential item is the Pilates mat and that’s all you need to get started.  As you progress to more advanced moves, this article will cover some equipment that should be helpful for you to proceed.

1) The Significance of a Pilates Mat

Most Pilates exercise involves mat work which can be considered to be the basis of Pilates exercises. The best Pilates mat should be thick and durable which can be used in gyms, homes or studios. Most of the Pilates mats are created for protecting and cushioning the spine throughout the mat work regimes.

A Pilates mat can be purchased for a relatively inexpensive price, and for the most part all gyms and fitness centers will have a Pilates mat. There are many companies that sell these mats. If you are interested in purchasing one you can do a search at any search engine.

Pilates mats can come in a variety of styles. For you to get the best ones, you need to check out their sizes, thicknesses, densities, colors, textures and materials used to get total satisfaction. You will find that typical prices for a Pilates mat ranges from US$25 to US$45. In the event you need to transport the Pilates mat to different places buy one that has attached handles and which can be folded.

2) A Pilates ring which is mostly used for Windsor Pilates

The Pilates ring is a stretchable rubber circle that is about 14 inches in diameter on the average. It can come in smaller or larger diameters, depending on what muscles are to be strengthened.

The Pilates ring was invented to sculpt core muscles. Core muscles consist of the abdominal muscles, the pelvic muscles, and the buttocks muscles. The Pilates ring is a safe way to sculpt these core muscles, which is to tighten them through endurance stretching.

In addition the Pilates ring can tone not just the core muscles but other hard-to-tone muscles in the legs. Such an exercise in which leg muscles are tightened is when one lies down on a mat and places the Pilates ring around their ankles and, lifts their legs up and down slowly in order to feel the resistance.

Pilates rings can also help to tone the arm muscles. An exercise that tightens the arms is one in which, in a standing position, the arms are raised straight over the head with the Pilates ring around the wrists and the arms slightly widened.

A participant should use the Pilates ring safely by not trying to strain the muscles too hard, which can lead to injury. These rings come in different resistance types, so it is best to start at the lowest resistance level and build up steadily.

The cost of these rings depends on the size, resistance, and manufacturer.

3) A rubber ball for the abdominal and buttocks exercises

The Pilates ball is important mainly because it is a piece of equipment which is used in so many of the Pilates routines. It helps with many different factors such as helping you gain better balance and to increase the intensity of your workout overall, both which are incredibly important to most people.

If you wish to purchase the Pilates ball, you should be able to find a selection of these balls at any store near to you that sells other forms of the Pilates equipment.

As with other Pilates equipment, if you can’t find it easily then it is a good idea to go into your local gym and ask a professional where you should go. Alternately you can seek help from the internet for all your Pilates essentials.

All the Pilates equipment  is used to add strength and value to your exercises, but you can also perform all the exercises without this equipment and still achieve the desired results although not as fast as you would with the given equipment.

The Benefits of Strength Training for Weight Loss

If you are dieting and want to find a good way to complement your weight loss goals you can do so by adding a strength training program to your weight loss regime.  In order to lose weight you need to burn more calories than you take in.  You need to burn 3500 calories to lose one pound of excess baggage.  You can diet alone and lose weight slowly without concentration on toning up or you can diet, firm up, and speed up this process by implementing strength training into your fitness regimen.

Dieting alone will accomplish weight loss.  However, adding strength training to your plan will allow you the benefit of not only accelerating the process of weight loss, but doing so while toning and firming your body.  When you lose weight sometimes your skin does not always go back in place in certain areas.  If your skin has lost some of its elasticity, such as with obesity or age, you will notice some areas that are not quite as firm as they once were.  This requires exercise to tone and firm these areas.  Additionally, weight training will build the needed muscle that you need to increase your metabolism.  Increasing your metabolism will help to burn those calories and succeed at a much faster rate of weight loss.

Muscle does weigh more than fat, but muscle also burns calories at a higher speed.  By increasing your muscle mass through strength training you will be able to burn calories much more efficiently while also acquiring a toner, more firm body.

The calorie burning effect that strength training gives you will keep your body burning calories all day long.  Strength training will also strengthen your bones.  This is a very important piece of information, especially for women who are at an increased risk for osteoporosis.

Strength training can be accomplished by working out with weights.  If you are just starting out, go easy.  It makes no sense to push yourself one day only to be too sore to work out the rest of the week because you over did it.  For women,  starting out with 3- to 5-pound weights is ideal. You can find weight training programs that you can do at home such as P90X or you can go to your local gym and spend money on a personal trainer.

You will want to build up slowly and with this type of thought you will notice gradual increases in your ability to accomplish your goals.  Start out slowly and work your body so that you are able to perform each workout with just the slightest discomfort in your final repetition.  Working beyond this point means that your body is not yet ready for the next level.  Start out with 2 to 3 sets of 10 repetitions of each exercise.  If this is too much scale back a bit and proceed even more slowly until you are ready for more.  Let your body be the judge of just how much you can handle comfortably.  Never work on the same group of muscles two days in a row.  Your muscles need time to rest in between workouts.

Strength training for weight loss is the most effective way to reach your goals.  You will see your weight drop more quickly while sculpting your body at the same time.