When you always feel tired, you may find it harder to concentrate on tasks, your level of frustration may rise, and you may not be as productive as you used to be. Sometimes the cause of persistent fatigue is obvious; other times, not so. Being energetic . . .
Your body type and shape are largely dependent on your genes. Body types can be classified into three main categories: ectomorph, mesomorph, and endomorph. If you are curious which sports are best for you, knowing your body type may become an important . . .
Common Sports Injuries
1. Ankle sprain
What it is – Many athletes, while participating in their favorite sports, have experienced a sprained ankle. The outside of the ankle has ligaments which are relatively weak and can be torn or stretched when the foot turns inward.
What you can do – Apply ice and elevate your ankle to reduce inflammation. When a sprain occurs, you must prevent your ankle from losing its flexibility and strength, and from possible re-injury. This can be done by guided exercise to be directed by a doctor or physical therapist. They will teach you what kind of exercises you can do.
When to see a doctor – It is important to find out where the sprain occurred. If it is a high ankle sprain, it is advisable to see a doctor to ensure that the bones in the lower leg didn’t separate. If you notice tenderness above the ankle, most likely it is a high ankle sprain. A high ankle sprain may take a longer time to heal.
2. Groin pull
What it is – This injury is common in such sports as football, soccer, hockey, and baseball. Players who push off in a side-to-side motion are more prone to strain in the muscles of the inner thigh or groin.
What you can do – Remedies for groin injuries include compression, ice, and rest. If athletes with a groin pull resume full activity at once, their condition may aggravate and turn into a long-term problem.
When to see a doctor – A groin pull accompanied by considerable swelling should be seen immediately by a physician.
3. Hamstring strain
What it is – Three muscles can be found at the back of the thigh which form the hamstring. Kicking your leg out sharply while running may cause the hamstring to be over-stretched. Falling forward while water-skiing may also cause hamstring strains.
What you can do – A hamstring strain may take a long time to heal due to the constant stress being applied to the injured tissue while walking. Because of this, complete healing may take anywhere from 6 to 12 months. It is usually difficult for athletes to stay inactive for such a long period, so recurrence of hamstring injuries are common.
4. Shin splints
What they are – Undergoing or participating in strenuous training programs like running on long paved roads sometimes causes pain down the front of the lower legs. This kind of pain is known as shin splints.
What you can do – Treatment for shin splints includes rest, ice, and over-the-counter pain medicine.
When to see a doctor – The pain brought about by shin splints is rarely due to a stress fracture (a break in the shin bone). However, if pain persists even after resting, you should see your doctor. Stress fractures require a longer rest period, usually a month or more.
5. Knee injury: ACL tear
What it is – ACL or the anterior cruciate ligaments hold the leg bone to the knee. These ligaments may be torn or strained if they are hit from the side, or due to sudden “cuts” or stops. If there is a complete or total tear, the dreaded “pop” may be heard.
When to see a doctor – ACL tears are considered the most serious of the common sports injuries. So if you suspect an ACL injury, you must see your doctor immediately. A completely torn ACL may require surgery if the individual wants to remain physically active.
6: Knee injury: Patellofemoral pain syndrome
What it is – The patella is the kneecap, and the femur is the thigh bone. The repetitive movement of the patella against the femur can damage the tissue under the kneecap, and this can lead to patellofemoral syndrome (also known as jumper’s knee or runner’s knee). Running, playing volleyball or basketball are common causes. One or both knees can be affected.
What you can do – Patellofemoral pain can last up to six weeks. Low-impact exercises can be done during this time. Working out the quadriceps may also ease the pain.
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Different Types of Exercise
1. Aerobic (Endurance) Exercises
Aerobic exercises (also known as cardio) increase breathing and heart rate. Aerobic refers to the use of oxygen to meet energy demands during exercise. This type of exercise keeps your lungs, heart, and circulatory system healthy. Some of the benefits of aerobic exercise are improving overall fitness, reducing the risk of stroke, heart disease and diabetes, as well as helping you build endurance. In general, aerobic exercises are performed at a moderate level of intensity over a relatively long period of time. Examples of aerobic exercises include:
• Brisk walking
• Climbing the stairs
• Playing tennis
Aerobic exercise differs from anaerobic exercise (e.g., strength training) in the intensity and duration of muscular contractions involved, and by how energy is generated within the muscle. Anaerobic exercise is more ideal for promoting strength, speed and power, and for increasing muscle mass. Unlike aerobic exercises which are performed for longer periods of time, anaerobic exercises are done for a shorter duration.
2. Strength Exercises
Also known as strength training or resistance training, this type of exercise helps keep your bones and muscles strong. Strength exercises increase muscle mass, endurance, and strength. They also strengthen joints, increase bone density, and build good posture. This type of exercise helps you perform everyday activities like climbing stairs, carrying groceries, and activities that require lifting. Some examples of strength exercises include:
3. Flexibility Exercises
Flexibility exercises can help you maintain a wide range of motion. Some people may not pay too much attention to this type of exercise because they don’t see it as a “proper exercise” (i.e., doesn’t require too much effort). But in reality, flexibility exercises provide so many benefits. That is why you should include them in your fitness regimen. Aside from increasing the range of motion, this type of exercise supports spinal musculoskeletal health, improves mobility, releases tension, and reduces the risk of injury while doing other types of exercises. Some examples of flexibility exercise include:
4. Balance Exercises
Practicing and improving balance is particularly important for older people because it can strengthen the core and help prevent falls. Almost any activity which keeps you on your feet and moving can help you maintain good balance. But there are specific exercises designed to enhance balance and improve stability. Some examples of balance exercises are:
• Heel-to-toe walk
• Standing on one foot
• Tai Chi
The four different types of exercise are aerobic, strength, flexibility, and balance. Most people tend to focus on one type of exercise, thinking they’re doing enough. But it is important to note that each type is different. Mixing up exercises will reduce boredom and allow you to enjoy all the benefits associated with an active lifestyle.
Do you want to get fit and healthy? The FITin56 program makes use of all four types of exercise to help you get fit and stay fit. You will gain access to workout videos, exercise videos, workout plans, health and fitness tips, and a nutrition plan. Sign up to the FITin56 home fitness program now!
What is Type 2 Diabetes?
Type 2 diabetes is a chronic health condition which affects the metabolism of sugar in the body. It occurs when the level of blood glucose rises beyond the normal level. Type 2 diabetes or hyperglycemia is the most common type of diabetes which occurs due to resistance to insulin or low level of insulin secretion from the pancreas.
Type 2 diabetes differs from type 1 diabetes. In type 1 diabetes, the body attacks the pancreas and the damaged pancreas doesn’t produce insulin. Type 1 diabetes is also called insulin-dependent diabetes and was formerly called juvenile-onset diabetes, since it often begins in childhood. In type 2 diabetes, the pancreas usually still produces some insulin, but not enough for the body’s needs.
The symptoms of type 2 diabetes had once been common in adults but now children are suffering too, due to childhood obesity.
Symptoms of Type 2 Diabetes
The symptoms of type 2 diabetes include the following:
Frequent urination – When sugar levels in the blood are high, the kidneys will try to remove excess sugar by filtering it out. This can cause a person to urinate more often, especially at night.
Increased thirst – The frequent urination can result in the body losing water. Because of this, a person may feel more thirsty than usual.
Always hungry – People with diabetes usually don’t get enough energy from the food they eat. The body’s digestive system breaks food down into glucose, which it uses as fuel. When an individual has diabetes, not enough glucose reaches the body’s cells. For this reason, people with type 2 diabetes often feel hungry, no matter how recently they’ve eaten.
Tiredness and fatigue – Type 2 diabetes can have an impact on a person’s energy level and cause them to feel tired or fatigued. This occurs because there is insufficient sugar reaching the body’s cells.
Blurry vision – Excess sugar in the blood can damage tiny blood vessels in the eyes. This can cause blurry vision. It can occur in one or both eyes and may come and go. If diabetes is not treated, damage to the blood vessels in the eyes can become more severe. When this happens, permanent loss of vision may eventually occur.
Slow healing of wounds – High sugar levels in the blood can damage nerves and blood vessels and impair blood circulation. As a result, cuts and wounds may take weeks to heal. Slow healing can also increase the risk of infection.
Tingling and numbness in the hands or feet – Too much sugar in the blood sugar can damage the body’s nerves and affect blood circulation. This can lead to a sensation of tingling, numbness, or pain in the hands and feet. This condition is known as neuropathy. It can worsen over time if a person doesn’t get treatment for diabetes.
Patches of dark skin – Formation of dark skin patches on the neck, armpit, or groin can signify an increased risk of diabetes. The patches may feel soft and velvety. This condition is known as acanthosis nigricans.
Itching and yeast infections – High sugar levels in the blood and urine provide food for yeast and can lead to infection. Yeast infections usually occur in warm, moist areas such as the mouth, armpits, and the genital area. Affected areas are usually itchy. A person may also experience redness, burning, and soreness.
Causes and Risk Factors for Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes occurs due to an increased resistance of the body to insulin. The pancreas secretes the hormone insulin which regulates the level of glucose in the bloodstream. Some of the risk factors for type 2 diabetes are the following:
Ways to Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
Following a healthy lifestyle can help prevent type 2 diabetes. A healthy lifestyle includes:
• Eat healthy foods like fresh fruits and vegetables and foods that are low in sugar, fat, and calories.
• Stay physically active every day.
• Shed the extra pounds with the help of daily exercise like swimming, jogging, walking, or a good fitness program to maintain a healthy body weight.
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Fitness Guide for Different Age Groups
If you spend decades of your life with a laid-back and sedentary lifestyle, then by the time you reach 60, you will most likely be battling against a host of ailments like arthritis, obesity, cardiac issues, diabetes, and whatnot. Would you like a life like that? No, right? Then check out this fitness guide for different age groups:
20s: Strengthen your fitness base
Lay the foundation of fitness in your 20s. Cut out the careless attitude and start with the development of muscles and strengthening of bones.
The 20s are the best time to learn to deal with stress more productively through fitness training, meditation, and exercise.
30s: Explore the fitness regimen
The 30s are the right age to stretch out and diversify. Experiment with cross-training for the prevention of overuse and imbalance injuries.
If you have been swimming through your 20s, then add some running to your schedule for a good blend of lower body and cardio workout.
Incorporate a combination of flexibility and balance exercises into your fitness regimen to tighten the muscles, prevent falls, and preserve the range of movement.
Try out other fitness activities such as tai chi, yoga, dancing, and more.
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What is High Impact Exercise?
High impact exercises are those that move both your feet off the ground at the same time. Some examples include running, jumping, knee-highs, burpees, jumping jacks, and cross training. They produce faster results but are harder on the body. This type of exercise is ideal for people who are already working out for quite some time, fitness buffs, and athletes.
What is Low Impact Exercise?
Low impact exercises are those that leave at least one foot on the ground. Some examples include walking, yoga, Pilates, moderate weight training, and dancing. Because there is less impact, low impact exercises tend to be gentler on joints and muscles. This type of exercise is ideal for beginners and those who are recovering from an injury.
Some people consider exercises such as cycling, swimming, and water aerobics to be low impact as well. But to be more precise, these can be described as “no impact” because the body is supported during movement (by machine or water).
When to Do High Impact Exercises?
You can do high impact exercises if:
You want to lose weight quickly – High impact exercises require more energy. You will be able to burn more calories in a relatively short amount of time, so they are ideal for people who want to lose weight fast.
You want a tougher challenge – Generally speaking, high impact workouts tend to be more intense, so they are not the best choice for beginners. But, if your goal is to be in the best possible shape and you are not afraid to push hard to achieve it, high impact exercises are ideal for you.
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Benefits of a Home Fitness Program
1. Choose Your Routines
You can choose the routines and fitness style you want. You can lay out a room at home with the equipment you want to use. Some fitness routines need you to already be fit, while others allow you to develop your fitness over time. Thereafter, you can just maintain your fitness or improve it by doing more strenuous workouts. Home fitness programs allow you to design routines that are suitable for the whole family as well as routines specifically designed for yourself. This lets you look at fitness levels, ability and level of motivation for everyone, and plan accordingly.
2. Minimal Equipment
Once you have decided on the fitness program you want to try, you can look at purchasing your home fitness equipment. Many home fitness workouts only require minimal equipment – a yoga mat, resistance bands, a stability ball, a pull-up bar, and a set of dumbbells. If you want to try more expensive equipment but want to save on costs, you can go online and find second-hand equipment. If you prefer to buy new, there are many sites that allow you to order online and save you the hassle of going to a store to purchase your fitness equipment.
3. Work with the Room You Have
Ensure that your fitness routine can be done in an available space at home. It is better if there can be a designated space, saving you time when you want to do your routine. If there isn’t a space you can use, you can always look at a space that allows you to move furniture out of the way so that you can practice your routine. Most home fitness programs do not require a lot of space.
4. Privacy and Family Time
Having a home fitness program does not just save you time and travel, it also affords you the privacy to work out in your own space. Many people feel judged when they take part in routines at the gym and other public places. Some people just feel uncomfortable working out in front of others. One of the benefits of a home fitness program means that this is avoided. For people with children of any age, a home fitness program also allows for time with family while exercising or working out. Older kids can join in, while younger ones can still be supervised. This also allows for partners to work out together at their convenience. To put it simply, a home fitness program is more relaxing and fun.
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Benefits of Aerobic Exercise
1. Improves cardiovascular health
Aerobic exercise is recommended for people at risk for heart disease. This is because exercise strengthens the heart and helps it pump blood more efficiently throughout the body. Equally important, cardiovascular exercise can help lower blood pressure and keep arteries clear by raising good cholesterol (HDL) and lowering bad cholesterol (LDL) levels in the blood. If you are specifically looking to lower cholesterol and blood pressure, aim for 30-40 minutes of moderate to vigorous intensity aerobic exercise 3 to 4 times a week.
2. Reduces risk of certain health problems
Moving from a sedentary lifestyle to one which involves a moderate amount of exercise can lead to significant improvements in health. Aerobic exercise reduces the risk of certain conditions, including heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, stroke, metabolic syndrome, and some types of cancer. Low-impact aerobic exercise like swimming can increase fitness in people who have arthritis. Regular exercise even has the potential to increase your lifespan.
3. Helps regulate blood sugar
Regular physical activity helps lower blood sugar and regulate insulin levels, while also keeping body weight in check. One study done on people with type 2 diabetes shows that any form of physical movement, whether aerobic or anaerobic, may produce these effects.
4. Fitness and endurance
Regular aerobic exercise improves cardiovascular fitness by increasing a person’s capacity to use oxygen. The heart’s capacity to send blood to the muscles is increased. Eventually, you may be able to attain a lower resting heart rate as well as a lower heart rate for the same workout intensity. As you get fitter, some activities will become easier. You’ll also be able to do the activity for longer. This is known as endurance. You will notice that you have developed stamina for everyday activities, not just for exercise.
5. Weight control
Diet and exercise are the main components of a weight loss program. But aerobic exercise can help you lose weight and keep it off. Aerobic exercise burns calories. Regular sessions of 30 to 60 minutes of low to moderate intensity exercise is important if you want to shed pounds. Of course, cutting calories can help reduce the amount of exercise needed for you to lose weight.
6. Reduces chronic pain
If you experience chronic back pain, low-impact cardiovascular exercise like aqua aerobics or swimming may help restore muscle function. Exercise can also aid in weight loss, which can further reduce chronic pain by putting less stress on the body during normal activities.
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According to the CDC, the minimum recommended amount of exercise is 150 minutes of moderate or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise each week. This can also be achieved by walking a minimum of 10,000 steps per day. More than half of the world’s population is not getting enough physical exercise on a daily basis. So what is the impact of this?
Negative Effects of a Sedentary Lifestyle
Worldwide, a sedentary lifestyle has been identified as the major cause of around 7% of type 2 diabetes cases, 6% of coronary heart disease cases, 10% of colon cancers, and 10% of breast cancers. A lack of physical activity is responsible for more deaths annually than smoking. The negative effects of a sedentary lifestyle include these health issues:
• High blood pressure
• Cardiovascular disease
• Increased risk of stroke
• Elevated cholesterol levels
• Increased risk of certain cancers
• Reduction in skeletal muscle mass which can result in osteoporosis
• Increased risk of type 2 diabetes
• Anxiety and depression
• Reduced cognitive function
• Metabolism disorders
• Reduced libido
• Sleep problems
Why Have People Become More Sedentary?
The main factor for people becoming more sedentary is technological advancement. People commute using services whereby they are passively transported, jobs require more time sitting behind a desk and even at home, people spend time on the computer, playing games or watching TV. In the past, more than 50% of jobs involved a lot of activity, but this is now down to around 25%. This means that around 75% of working people are mostly sedentary at work. People also work longer hours, which means that they spend more time sitting down.
How Can We Reverse This Trend?
While many people will head to the gym or sports club after work, many people feel that they just do not have time to exercise. There are ways to improve the amount of physical activity while at work. You can look at having a treadmill or bike desk if your office allows for it, which allows you to exercise and work at the same time. Or find out about a standing desk, which can also help reduce the amount of time spent sitting.
If these are not possible, you can always get up and walk around for a few minutes. Take the stairs. Park further away if you drive to work so that you have to walk further to the office. Use a wearable step counter and try and meet your step count daily, even if you have to pace around in your office. Any exercise is better than none at all.
The negative effects of a sedentary lifestyle are becoming more and more apparent as people spend more time sitting than ever before. This can only be mitigated by people actively ensuring that they get a certain amount of exercise every week. Even five minutes of physical activity every few hours can have a marked effect on overall health. Where possible, try and set aside the time to do at least 30 minutes of exercise, five times per week. But if this is not possible, do as much as you can, whenever you can. Your body and mind will be much better off in the long run.
FITin56 is a fitness program that will help you achieve that fit and healthy body you’ve always wanted. Sign up now to get on the road to health and fitness!