Category Archives: Fitness

Intra Workout Drink – What to drink during your workouts?

I used to think the term BCAA(branch chain amino acids)  was synonymous to an intra workout drink.  Yes the same heavily marketed BCAA’s which have amazing flavors and are pushed by supplement stores.

But my ACSM certification in nutrition  has helped me understand what to look for in an Ideal Intra Workout Drink.

Firstly , I am not against using BCAA’s but most people treat them as purely an intra workout drink without understanding what they are made of and meant for. This lack of knowledge has many implications in the long run.

The Scientific Breakdown of BCAA

Branched chain amino acids (BCAA) are the building blocks of protein. These are essential for muscle growth and recovery, and can be consumed throughout the day. Having them together with a high protein diet leads to excessive uric acid which is detrimental to bone health.

Treating  BCAA as an intra workout drink(if managed well with the protein you take daily)  is not wrong, but during a workout your body needs some other elements to enhance performance and prevent dehydration.

Here is what your body requires during a workout.

Components of an Ideal Intra Workout Drink

  1. Energy

During a workout your body needs instant energy as it has to undergo excessive stress. For this a high glycemic carbohydrate is ideal. (something which immediately provides energy, without much need to be broken down). The simplest  and fastest dissolving form of Carbohydrate is glucose. Thus glucose should be one of the components of an ideal intra workout drink.

2. Electrolytes 

The body looses water in the form of perspiration(sweating) during a workout.  Along with sweat, the body also loses essential salts, which need to be replaced. Here are some of them and their functions.. intra workout drink

3. Tonicity- Water enters and exits body cells by the process of osmosis. Wherein it travels from its higher concentration to its lower concentration through the semi permeable cell wall.  In simple words water moves from a solution where it is present in abundance to the solution where it is lesser. This is maintained by the electrolytes mentioned above.

Based upon the tonicity drinks can be classified in to :

  • Isotonic sport drinks contain similar concentrations of salt and sugar as in the human body.
  • Hypertonic sport drinks contain a higher concentration of salt and sugar than the human body.
  • Hypotonic sport drinks contain a lower concentration of salt and sugar than the human body.

The best suited among these for your intra workout drink is an isotonic drink.

Why Drinking Water is Not enough?

Pure water is not an ideal intra workout drink as it might help you quench thirst but it will not ensure proper hydration. Water provides no sodium, which helps the body hold onto water and helps fluid get to the right places in the body, like muscles and blood.

What do I recommend?

There are a number of ways in which you can make an isotonic drink at home. But I choose to use Enerzal . As it has all the essential elements of an ideal intra workout drink. intra workout drink

Do give it a try and no they dint pay me for saying this, yet.

 

4 Reasons to Start Designing your Health Plan this Weekend

The weekend offers a time to relax and recuperate from the stresses of the week. It is when you make time for things you don’t do usually. Like working on passions, being happy, spending time with family or even sleeping.
 
Funny how life has taken this form. Chasing ultimate wealth has taken our attention from the gifts we already have. Although every day offers 24 hours, everybody has a shortage of time for themselves.
 
Such are the burdens of work. All your self improvement plans keep getting postponed from one weekend to another. Yet, if the boss or a client gives you a new chunk of work, you abuse the hell out of them,  but complete the work on time.
 
This exhibits how lazy humans are about self improvement. The only reason they don’t find time is because they don’t make time. Yet, as time passes, the decision of making health a part of everyday lifestyle slips away from our hands. Your constant ignorance makes you prone to diseases  which lead the way to hospitals. But if you choose to create a health plan, you can prevent yourself a lot of trouble and save yourself a lot of money.

health plan

The number of fat bellies I see around is growing like the number of junk food stores. People are so driven to get much and wanting more that they overlook their health altogether. Yes, creating a big business or doing any job requires singularity of purpose. But in the mad chase for money and power, you forget your body, which makes you capable of doing everything you do.
 
But sooner or later this ignorance reaps consequences. Your lack of interest towards your health makes you handicapped physically or mentally. You become dependent on doctors and drugs, recreational or curative.
 
If you want to maximize your short life span you have to act now. Sit down with yourself this weekend and identify the areas where you can improve your health. These can be deficiencies, addictions, nutritional imbalance, sedentary lifestyle and lack of exercises. Once you are aware of your exact situation, design a plan to improve your lifestyle.

health plan

Here are 4 reasons to start designing your health plan this weekend:
 
  1. Every second wasted adds to your unhealthiness – Till the time you don’t commit to a goal you will not make the desired effort to do it. You will keep allowing yourself to indulge in unhealthy activities till you don’t identify your problemsOnce you work towards designing your health plan, you will naturally start being more mindful of what you eat and how much you move( or don’t).

health plan

2. If you delay today you will never do it- Procrastination is the reason why thousands of people take their ideas to the grave. Execution is the difference between dreams and accomplishments. Take out 15 minutes today to identify your health issues and designing a plan to rectify them. This will be an informal commitment and from tomorrow onward you will have no option but to follow through on your promise. But if you postpone it today as well, you will fuel the procrastinating part of your brain to keep finding reasons to delay.
 
3. The weekdays are overbooked– Only the weekends offer you a flexible schedule. Otherwise most of the world is a victim of a fixed schedule lifestyle where you are not the master of your own time, someone else is. Use your free time to find more free time on the weekdays and design your health plan accordingly.
 
4. The WEEKEND defines your lifestyle – Either you work under pressure for 5 days and indulge in activities to forget your miseries on two days. Or you live a balanced life for all 7 days. The weekend is your opportunity to redefine your lifestyle. It is not about a diet plan or an exercise at the end. Your health plan has to realign your lifestyle. The best way of doing that is on a weekend when you are most vulnerable to give in to the temptation of rewarding yourself for suffering for 5 days of work.

health plan

Imagine a situation where you have worked hard for years and amassed enough riches to live a comfortable life. But at this point your body is unable to enjoy like it was all those years back. On top of it you have huge medical expenses and diseases which make death appear better than life.
 
Grotesque as it may appear this is your reality after 20-25 years. Learn the lessons now and invest your time on creating a health plan this weekend. Otherwise wait for a consequence to awaken your senses towards its importance.  The choice is yours.

Top 5 tips for a beginners calisthenic workout program

Everything in the universe has rhythm, everything dances. Your body is no different. It has its own graceful way of flowing across the visual spectrum, in perfect sync with its surroundings. Calisthenics utilizes this grace of movement to achieve bodily fitness. I thought it would be helpful for sharing 5 tips for a beginners calisthenic workout program, so that it would be easier for people to practice this connatural way of staying healthy.

What is Calisthenics?

This beautiful form of exercise, in which you use nothing other than your own body weight, originated in ancient Greece. Its rhythmic nature and aesthetic grace make it more of an art form than exercise.  The creative possibilities of this form of training is endless.

How to practice it?

A beginners calisthenic workout comprises basic body weight exercises like planks, push ups and pull ups. As your body gets more accustomed to the basic movements, you use your creativity to generate more resistance by rearranging your center of gravity and  finding variations.

beginners calisthenics workout program

Top 5 tips for a beginners calisthenic workout program

After practicing it for over 3 years now, I still believe I am far from being a calisthenic expert. Just like life, the learning process with this unconventional exercise  form is endless.  Nonetheless the experience over these years has helped me gather a few insights which will be helpful to anyone wanting to partake in a beginners calisthenic workout.

Here are 5 tips for a beginners calisthenic workout program:

  1. Its all about the CORE – Core stability forms the basis of most body weight workouts. So one must ensure a strong set of abdominal and gluteal muscles.  This can only be accomplished by using many static hold exercises like the plank, v-ups, plie holds etc.
    beginners calisthenics workout program
  2. Static to Dynamic– To ensure proper muscle development, beginners must always move from static exercises to dyanmic ones. Before you get into variations which involve a lot of movement you must always engage in static exercises (as mentioned above). This will help you identify and engage all the muscles associated with that specific movement.
  3. Push and Pull – If you really want to pursue calisthenics be ready to do push ups and pull ups without counting. These are the most common body weight exercises. If these are mastered then they form the basis of more creative movements. Try to reach a level of natural ease with push ups and pulls up before going in for something more complicated.
  4. The Medrano Effect– Out of the thousands of things you watch online everyday, spend 15 mins noticing the movements of experts in the field of calisthencis. Not with intention of aping them blindly(it wouldn’t be possible, they have been practicing this discipline for too long), but understand the harmony and rhythm of movement. Frank Medrano is to calisthenics was Muhammad Ali was to Boxing or Sachin Tendulkar was to Cricket, Do check him out.
  5. Power lies in Patience– Don’t be afraid to fall a hundred times over, don’t be disheartened if the movements that you envisioned yourself doing, don’t happen too soon. The most important tip for a beginners calisthenic workout plan is patience. Your resolve will surely be tested, but your patience will not go unrewarded. PicsArt_01-09-03.10.32With the game plan set its time you take the plunge into this beautiful discipline wholeheartedly. The benefits of calisthenics are plentiful. These include:
  • No equipment required
  • Can be performed anywhere at anytime(even at home)
  • Full body workout
  • More scope for creativity and fun than dumbbells
  • Its functional nature helps develop relevant muscles in perfect proportion
  • Its rhythmic nature brings harmony to the mind

With so many benefits I think everyone must make calisthenics a part of their workout routines. Hope you can use and share these 5 tips for a beginners calisthenic workout program in your circle of healthy friends.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fastest Tricep and Bicep Workout

This is the fastest tricep and back workout. When you are really troubled for time yet ou need to get a good workout in, you have to focus on pyramid and supersets.

Fastest Tricep and Bicep workout 

This workout is high on intensity and gives your muscles the adequate pump in the minimum amount of time. The fastest tricep and bicep workout guarantees better results than you would get from a hour long session.

Try it for yourself and see how much more you can achieve in 30 minutes of a simple tricep and bicep workout.

Fitness Mantra: Train, Eat, Sleep Amazing

Whatever we do after a while we tend to be a little rusty at the onset. So I thought writing after a while it would be ideal to keep it simple and write about a Fitness mantra which has helped me stay fit. This fitness mantra is not as complex as some of my initial posts on the website, yet(or that’s why) it will help people struggling to achieve better fitness.

You might be at different levels of fitness, some of you might have just started off with a fitness activity being sick of your friends talk about sprouts, eggs, chicken and tofu all day. While others must be struggling to repeat the extraordinary results of the first few months of training. Still others might be stuck at further refining a well toned physique. The fitness mantra remains same for all.

Everyone wants that amazing health change, but very few are able to back this want with necessary amazing action. To achieve anything extraordinary you have to let go of everything ordinary. Improving your health requires you to be a little extraordinary, because your ordinary habits are the ones which made you unhealthy.

The fitness mantra for an amazing health change involves training, eating and sleeping in an amazing way. Yes you might be doing it almost right, but almost right is not amazing.

So depending upon your level of fitness, find your amazing levels, you will need to sacrifice a little, indulge a little less, but the rewards you will get will surely be fulfilling.

Fitness Mantra 1: Training Amazing 

The amazing-ness doesn’t lie in the complexity of your workout plan or the size of the dumb bell you bench press with. It is more to do with your intensity. Even if it is as simple as walking in the evening, the intensity with which you approach this has to be amazing. If you can take care of your intensity while approaching your workout, your workout will take care of you.

Fitness Mantra 2: Eating Amazing

Everybody knows eating sweets, doughnuts, cakes, is not amazing yet you do it. Everybody knows eating spinach, broccoli, sprouts, eggs, chicken will lead to amazing results but these don’t give your tongue the zing that other food does. Eating amazing is less about realizing what is good for you, everybody knows, and more about giving up on taste bud based eating without spoiling your mood. Your celebrity Nutritionists might conjure up the best diet plan, but it will be of no use if you don’t follow it for long, and you can yourself make the simplest of diet changes and sustain it to see spectacular results.

Fitness Mantra 3: Sleeping Amazing

This actually is the simplest and most ignored part of your quest for better health. Yes you all have a million friends, yes your smartphone develops magnetic properties just as you are planning to sleep,  yes you all have strange working hours, yes you need to network at odd hours, yes you have to stand in long ques to withdraw money, but to be amazing you need to prioritize sleep. Amazing sleeping implies 7-8 hours of daily sleep. How you manage to do it will make you amazing.

So long story short there is no fitness mantra at all. Its about executing what you all know. If you want amazing results be ready to put in amazing efforts.

Have an amazing day.