3 Workout Apps To Try Today

With the overwhelming number of fitness and nutrition resources out there, it can be daunting to try and find the one that works for you. Well, we took care of some of the work for you!

Whether you love the gym, hate the gym, or have no time for the gym – there is an app out there for you!

LOVE THE GYM: If you love the gym, but are looking for a little gymspiration, look no further than the Nike + Training Club – Workouts & Fitness Plans. This app has it all, serving a variety of fitness levels, intensity levels, and providing workouts with light and full equipment.

HATE THE GYM: If you can’t stand the gym, check out “Couch to 5K” – an app that that gets you from your couch to running a 5K in just 9 weeks. Running has a TON of health benefits, and with spring in full bloom there isn’t a better time to be outside! The app asks that you have 20-30 minutes to spare three times a week.

NO TIME FOR THE GYM: If you’re just too busy, you might want to look into “7 Minute Workout Challenge.” That’s right – a killer workout for the busiest of the busy. According to the app’s description “Researchers have selected 12 exercises that are performed for 30 seconds with 10 second rest intervals. This high intensity training with little rest results in higher daily metabolism and is the equivalent of working out for over an hour.” Talk about maximizing your time!

The fastest way to a healthier, fitter body in a time crunch is to follow our 7 proven hacks for finally getting your body back in under 10 minutes a day (without a gym!)

What are your favorite workout apps? Let us know on social media:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/fusionwellness

Twitter: @fusionwellnss

Instagram: @fusionwellnessinc

How Important IS Stretching, Anyway?

How important is stretching? According to a recent  Harvard Health study, stretching is essential, especially as you age.

Although it’s common to lose flexibility as you age, stiff and inflexible muscles can lead to shorter muscles in general. When you cause a shortened muscle to become active, you can increase your risk for injury, as well as joint and muscle pain. In order to keep muscles flexible and long, Harvard Health Publications recommends that  you stretch them at least three to four times a week (if not daily).

In addition to injury prevention, having more flexible muscles can lead to several other benefits. According to the Mayo Clinic, flexible muscles can:

  • Help your joints use their full range of motion
  • Encourage stronger athletic performance
  • Reduce back and joint pain
  • Improve your balance

However, not ALL stretching is beneficial. Harvard Health Publications recommends stretching only when your muscles are WARM.  So don’t start your warm up with static stretches (i.e. holding a particular stretch for a long time). If you would like to incorporate stretching into your warm up, try doing dynamic stretches instead. Dynamic stretches incorporate movement. For example,  rotate your arms in circles or pull your knees into your chest while you walk.

After your muscles are warm, you can stretch, holding each static stretch for anywhere from 10 to 30 seconds. Trust your body here – you should be able to breathe fluidly while you stretch. If your breath catches, that’s your body telling you to ease up. As a rule – discomfort is ok, pain is not. Lean into discomfort, back away from pain.

Finally, like any change you make to your lifestyle and fitness routine, please check in with a doctor or physical therapist first, and expect change to be gradual.

Looking for some simple, fast, sustainable workouts to add to your new daily practice of stretching? Check out our  7 proven hacks for finally getting your body back in under 10 minutes a day (without a gym!)

Subscribe to our blog to get twice weekly insights that will help you create a life of sustainable health.


Find us on Social Media:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/fusionwellness

Twitter: @fusionwellnss

Instagram: @fusionwellnessinc

5 Ways to Boost Your Activity, Every Day!

If you can’t get to the gym, you can still get in a good workout. Try one, or all five of these tips!

  1. Take the stairs: If you work or live in an elevatored building, take the stairs to your desired destination! According to a Harvard Health study, walking up stairs is “twice as taxing as brisk walking on the level and 50% harder than walking up a steep incline or lifting weights.” Take them at your own pace – even if you walk at a slower pace you will “burn calories two to three times faster climbing stairs than walking briskly on the level.”
  2. TV Show Game: Use those commercial breaks to your advantage! Pick an exercise, or a set of exercises, to fit into the 2 – 3 minutes that it takes to get through a commercial break! Can you fit 10 push-ups, 10 sit-ups and 10 squats into 2 minutes? By the end of your show, you’ll have fit in an awesome workout!
  3. Park far away: We all love getting that perfect parking spot, but if you park farther away from the entrance, you’ll have a longer way to walk! If you are going grocery shopping, that’s also a great opportunity to farmers’ walk with heavy bags back to your car!
  4. Drink more water: All those trips to the office water cooler add up. In addition, if you’re staying more hydrated, you’ll also have the urge to… well… relieve yourself more often! That means more time walking around. Want an extra challenge? When you need to use the restroom, take the stairs to use the restroom on a different floor. Add to that the fact that proper hydration helps curb appetite and keep your system functioning properly, and it’s an allover win!
  5. Perform your own housework: Instead of hiring someone to do all the walking for you, get physical! Squat down low to scrub those baseboards. Bring your laundry up and down the stairs. Vacuum every surface you can!

Want even more ways to get fit with a busy schedule? Check out these 7 proven hacks for finally getting your body back in under 10 minutes a day (without a gym!)

Subscribe to our blog to get twice weekly insights that will help you create a life of sustainable health.

Find us on Social Media:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/fusionwellness

Twitter: @fusionwellnss

Instagram: @fusionwellnessinc

 

Discipline vs Being Too Hard On Yourself: Where to Draw the Line

From an early age, we’re taught that discipline is a worthwhile skill. Those who are more disciplined study harder, perform better on tests, advance further in sports, music and all extracurriculars, strive for higher education, get better jobs, and the list goes on and on. Discipline is healthy. It inspires practice, analysis, self awareness and self respect.

However, it becomes easy, especially as an adult, to blur the line between discipline and obsession. As we grow more aware of ourselves, we grow more aware of the people and the world around us. Self awareness turns into comparison. Practice turns into obsession, and burning out. Self respect turns into being too hard on ourselves. Ultimately, when you’re too hard on yourself, it can lead to low self esteem and even long term psychological effects.

This is not to say you should abandon your sense of discipline entirely. Your discipline is what got you to where you are in the first place. But when it comes to crafting your ideal nutrition, fitness routine and lifestyle, you need balance in order to sustain things long term. Too much or too little discipline can tip the scales in an unhealthy way. There is no need to beat yourself up if you weren’t able to get a workout in today – simply plan for it and ensure you make time for it tomorrow. On the other hand, shrugging off your workout plan and diving into those cookies your coworker brought into the office isn’t a great plan, either.

Try thinking of it this way – how would you treat a friend? If a friend had a serious goal, how would you advise them? When would you tell them to ease up on themselves, or to start treating their goal more seriously?

We are often much harder on ourselves then we are on our friends. If we spoke to our friends the way we do to ourselves (“You look horrible today.” “None of your clothes fit you well right now.” “You’re eating terribly.” “What is wrong with you?”), we would run out of friends quickly! Treat yourself with the same compassion with which  you would treat a friend. You’ll find that you still strive to reach your goals, but don’t sweat it as much when you slip or hit a stumbling block.

Discipline is admirable when combined with balance and realistic expectations. It’s often hard to fit in a “real” workout with 30+ cardio, stretching, and strength conditioning, on top of all of your daily commitments. Sneak in the workout you can with our  7 proven hacks for finally getting your body back in under 10 minutes a day (without a gym!)

Subscribe to our blog to get twice weekly insights that will help you create a life of sustainable health.

Find us on Social Media:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/fusionwellness

Twitter: @fusionwellnss

Instagram: @fusionwellnessinc

Summer Exercise and Community Bonding!

20120811-095221.jpg

As I was walking to work this morning I happened upon this awesome thing that NYC offers: Summer Streets! Here’s the description NYC.gov offers:

“Join us for the fifth annual Summer Streets! On August 4, 11 and 18 from 7 am to 1 pm, nearly seven miles of New York City’s streets will be opened up for everyone to play, run, walk and bike. From the Brooklyn Bridge to Central Park, along Park Avenue and connecting streets you can rock climb at Spring Street, receive a free bike helmet at 51st Street, soar through the air on a zip line at Foley Square or just stroll along and experience the city’s streets in a new way—all for free.”

Get more information here!

Doesn’t that sound amazing??? Does your city/community offer anything like this? Why not start it up?

It’s Too Hot to Samba, So Bike!

As we begin the summer months, and it gets more and more beautiful outside, who wouldn’t want to find great ways to exercise while enjoying the beautiful weather?  Amazingly enough, I have found a solution: biking!

I’ve been biking more frequently lately, and thought I would share my experience with you as we make the transition into summer! Knowing the crunch for both time and space that many people have, I realize that it’s not practical to think that everyone owns a bike– I don’t either! When I feel the urge to pedal through Central Park, I call upon Larry’s Freewheeling to remedy my bikelessness (check out their facebook page here! http://ow.ly/1O10xP ). Check local listings for places that might rent bikes near year, or sell used bikes at reasonable rates.

Biking truly is a wonderful way to enjoy the beauty of summer while burning calories, working your entire body (in a way that’s joint friendly), and getting some cardio into your schedule!  I hope to see you out there! Happy peddling!

5 Quick (& Fun?!) Workout Ideas

So often my clients, friends, and family complain to me that they do not have time to workout, and I bet you feel the same way. Sure, you calculate the amount of time it takes to get to the gym, do your full workout, shower, and get back to work/home. Surprise!: Just 10-20 minutes a day is better than nothing at all, and 30 minutes 3-5 days a week is great. The best part is, you can do it all at home for little to no investment!

Here are some ideas that work:

1. Balance/Stability Ball: This ball is why I am sore today. You can work everything from upper body to lower body to abs with this ball. It challenges you to use main muscle groups along with stabilizer muscles. I love it, and it’s fun to me. I always fall off at some point and crack up laughing at myself! A good resource for more information is gaiam.com. You can either just buy the Balance Ball or you can get the entire Balance Ball Kit, that comes with DVDs, etc.

2. Jump Rope: Yup. Just like when you were a kid. Pick up the rope and start jumping. You’ll be amazed how difficult it is! Jumping rope is a great quick way to get your cardiovascular workout. Try to stick with it for 15-20 minutes minimum (but, again, 10 minutes is better than none), even if you have to take 30 second breaks. This is my favorite Jump Rope because it is plain, inexpensive, and eco-friendly!

3. Workout Videos: There are so many options, I could never name them all. Here are a few that have worked for past clients: The Firm (*jump rope included!), Yoga for Beginners, and Zumba Fitness. The idea is to pick something that looks like fun to you, make sure you chose something where you will not injure yourself, and start carefully, paying attention to your alignment! Most videos now have an “Express” option of some kind that lasts 15-25 minutes.

4. Go Dancing!: If you have the liberty of a few free evenings and willing friends (or a partner), go out dancing! You’ll burn many a calorie out there on the dance floor, and you’ll be having a great time! Go and get your groove on!

5. Walk/Stairs: No, seriously, keep it simple, put one foot in front of the other and walk. Grab your earphones, listen to your favorite upbeat, happy-go-lucky album, and get moving. Even a few laps around your yard or block is better than being inactive all day. You can also use this as a nice time to yourself, to clear your head and focus on you. During extreme weather, walk your stairs. I even have clients that walk the stairs at work before their workday starts. (If you are pretty fit and this comes extremely easy to you, increase the pace significantly or make the walk a run in both instances).

The overall idea is to find ways to be creative and work exercise into your day, rather than trying to force it in or schedule your life around it. Increasing your activity a mere 10 minutes a day will make a world of difference! Take one minute to jot down 2 or 3 ideas to work into your week right now!

Let me know how it goes!