Jumping rope is one of the best forms of physical activity that will strengthen your cardiovascular system. It is also good for your mental health as it requires a certain level of focus and coordination. Jumping rope is a good way to start a workout and warm up quickly. This is because it’s a full body activity.
If you’re a boxing fan, you will know that jumping rope has been a traditional part of training for a fight. All of the great boxers like Muhammad Ali, “Sugar” Ray Robinson, Mike Tyson and Floyd Mayweather have all mastered jumping rope. Boxing skills are complimented by the skill of jumping rope.
Here are some of my recommended jump ropes:
If you want to gain muscle mass fast you need to be in a positive energy balance. This means that you need to consume more calories than you burn. In other words… YOU NEED TO EAT!!
In general, there are 700 calories worth of energy in one pound of muscle. You need roughly 2800 calories to actually build a pound of muscle. This is largely to support protein turnover, which can be elevated with training.
You need protein!
Protein is a macronutrient that is essential to building muscle mass. It is commonly found in animal products, but it is also present in other sources such as nuts and legumes.
The amount of protein that you need depends on a few factors including your weight, age, sex, and health status.
Why is protein important?
It helps you build muscle mass and repair muscle tissue.
Amino acids are organic compounds that form protein which produces muscle mass. Amino acids are classified into three groups.
Essential amino acids cannot be made by the body and must be supplied by food.
Nonessential amino acids are made from the body from essential amino acids or in the normal breakdown of proteins.
Conditional amino acids are needed in times of illness and stress.
Proteins are the “Building blocks” of muscle mass. Proteins are made of amino acid molecules. Imagine amino acids as Lego pieces that connect to each other to form protein.
Where do I get protein?
Protein mostly comes from the food that we eat. It’s mainly from animal products, but also in plants, nuts, and legumes. Protein can also be supplemented from protein powders.
Foods that contain protein are:
- Lean Beef– 22 grams of protein per 3-ounce serving of 93% lean ground beef.
- Chicken– 27 grams of protein per 3-ounce serving of skinless chicken breast.
- Salmon– 19 grams of protein per 3-ounce serving.
- Eggs– 6 grams of protein per 1 large egg.
- Peanut Butter– 7 grams of protein per 2 tablespoons.
- Pasta– 6 grams of protein per 1 cup cooked penne.
- Cottage Cheese– 12 grams of protein per ½ cup seving.
- Lentils– 18 grams protein per 1 cup cooked lentils.
If you want to gain muscle mass fast, you need to add more protein to your diet. There are plenty of organic food sources that you can get protein from. If you need to supplement there are also plenty of options of supplements like vegan protein shakes or whey protein. The bottom line is that… You need to feed your muscles if you want them to grow!
“All About Muscle Growth.” Precision Nutrition, 11 Feb. 2013, www.precisionnutrition.com/all-about-muscle-growth.
In this article I want to share some of the best essentials that I believe you can have if you are serious about your training.
- Water bottle
- Foam roller
- Yoga mat
- Jump rope
Having a water bottle is essential every time you work out. The body needs to stay hydrated properly to function at its best. Having your own water bottle is also beneficial for not mistaking a generic water bottle for someone else’s. With Covid constantly being a problem in our society, it’s very important to not drink after others whether it be intentionally or accidental.
Foam rolling is an essential tool for self myofascial release. Self myofascial release is just a fancy term for self massage. The purpose of this is to help warm up muscles, and to help your body recover from workouts by alleviating muscle soreness. You can also use a tennis ball or lacrosse ball as an alternative for pinpointing certain spots.
Yoga mats are good to have while performing exercises on a hard surface like cement, asphalt, hard wood, tile, etc. Doing ab crunches on a yoga mat is important to avoid irritating the spine on hard surfaces.
Jump rope is one of the best ways to get a cardio blast. It’s a full body coordinated movement that helps develop rhythm and athleticism. Jump ropes are also very affordable, usually ranging between $2 and $10. It’s best to jump for a certain amount of time. Usually a couple of three minute rounds of jumping is a good way to start a workout and get the body warm.
Get yourself a good pair of running shoes or cross trainers. Having the correct shoes will make a great difference in your training program and overall fitness. Usually most lower body aches, pains, and dysfunction is rooted in the arches of a person’s feet. Sometimes it is even necessary to add an extra pair of insoles to your shoes to better support your feet.
If you are serious about your health you must be willing to invest in your fitness. All of the items listed above are low cost and could easily be put into a budget. Remember good health is true wealth. Happy New Year!
Nutrition labels allow you to make educated choices about what you eat.
- Serving size
- Percentage of daily value
- 13 core nutrients
The serving size is at the top.
All of this information is based on this amount.
So you need to make sure that you compare this to the amount of food that you actually eat.
For example- eating a whole bag of chips when the serving size is only for 10 chips.
The serving size on the label is usually a much smaller amount than most people would eat.
Moving on to calories.
The number of calories listed is based on the serving size.
If you have more than the suggested serving size the calories will be higher, if you have less the calories will be lower.
Not all calories are created equal.
Empty calories void of nutrition and full of chemicals and preservatives wear down the body and add up quick.
Clean, whole foods are lower in calories and much higher in nutrients and fiber.
We need to take other things into consideration when choosing foods like the percentage of daily value.
This tells us how much of a nutrient a food contains.
5% of less is considered a little amount of a nutrient.
And 15% or more is considered a lot.
Nutrients to look for include:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
On the flip side, nutrients to consume in moderation include:
- Trans fats
Let’s take a look at nutrition labels for two similar products and see how they stack up.
By comparing these two cereal labels, let’s figure out which option is the healthier choice.
First, check the serving size.
Is it the same for both products?
Moving on to calories…
Product 1 has 110 calories per serving while product 2 has 120.
Now look at the percentage of daily value and see which nutrients each product is high or low in.
Product 1 has:
- 16g Sugar per serving
- 1g Fiber
- 2g Protein
Product 2 has:
- 7g Sugar
- 3g Fiber
- 10g Protein
Even tho Product 1 has ten less calories, Product 2 is the healthier option.
It has 5x the protein (10g vs 2g)
It also has triple the fibre which will aid in digestion and help you feel full longer.
Product 2 also has less than half the amount of sugar.
There are some foods that don’t require a label including:
- Fresh fruits and vegetables
- Raw meat
- Fish & Seafood
- Foods made in stores like bakery items or store made salads.
- Foods that contain few nutrients like tea, coffee and alcohol.
Ultimately, the information on a nutrition label is there to help us make informed decisions about what we eat.
Here is a quick lower body workout using a kettlebell. The focus of this workout is to strengthen the legs and glutes. I started the workout with a quick foam roll and jump rope warm up. After I was fully warmed up I grabbed a kettlebell and did overhead reverse lunges (2 sets of 10) and side lunges (2 sets of 10).
The overhead reverse lunge is a full body exercise that really works to build strength in the glutes, hamstrings, and quads. Holding the kettlebell over your head with one arm will also cause the core muscles the stabilize and load the spine.
The second exercise in this workout was the side lunge which is a variation of the lunge that stabilizes and strengthens muscles in the legs while working side-to-side along the frontal plane. It is important to move the body in multiple planes of motion to reach maximal mobility.
Try to add these exercises to your next workout routine. Subscribe to my Youtube Channel for more fitness content. Leave me a comment and let me know how it goes for you!
Making Healthy Food Choices In Our Busy Lives
You already know how important it is to make healthy food choices for you and your family. But how can you fit the best choices into your busy life?
You’ll be pleased to discover that a hectic life doesn’t mean that every meal has to be fast food on the run! Sometimes it’s difficult to make healthy changes, but with a little planning and know-how, it can be done.
Here are some strategies to help you and your family make healthy choices:
- Avoid temptation. It’s so easy to walk into the store with good intent, but walk out with bags full of unhealthy foods. Unfortunately, our wills are weak, especially if we’ve trained ourselves over the years to buy junk foods.
- Never shop when you’re hungry. This way you won’t pick out unhealthy choices because they look good at the moment.
- Get rid of the unhealthy foods in your home. If they aren’t around, you won’t be tempted to eat them.
- Think of healthier alternatives to your family’s favorite unhealthy foods. Rather than high calorie chips, try trail mixes or rice cakes. Low calorie puddings or frozen yogurts are better alternatives to higher fat ice creams.
- Eat fast and healthy meals at home. When you’re tired at the end of the day and you realize you still have to feed the family, it’s easy to go to a fast food chain and throw fast food on the table. It may save some time, but it won’t save your health – or your pocket book!
- The great thing is that there are many easy, fast, and healthy foods you can make at home. This takes some planning, but you’ll be more satisfied, save money, and be healthier as well.
- Look online for quick and easy recipes made with all natural ingredients. Many recipes can be made in 30 minutes or less and only have 5 ingredients. Taking the time to research recipes will save your sanity in the long run. Then once you find a “hit” with the family, store the recipe in a book or on your computer.
- When you cook, make large batches and freeze the leftovers. This way, you’ll already have meals in the freezer that you can just thaw, heat, and serve. This is the opportune way to enjoy “fast” food at home.
- Eat Slower. Since the brain takes about 20 minutes to get the signal that the stomach is full, if you eat too fast you’ll pack in a lot more food than you need. When you’re still thinking you’re hungry, it’s easy to make the wrong choices about food. If you slow down while you’re eating, you’ll eat less and you’ll still feel full.
- Set a calming mood before sitting down for a meal. Avoid having the television on or eating as you’re rushing the kids out the door to another activity. Sitting calmly at the table will allow everyone to relax and enjoy their meal.
- Make dinner time a social experience. Dinner should be about enjoying your company and taking pleasure in the foods you’re eating.
When you begin to look at mealtime as a social experience, it becomes easier to make the right choices about healthy foods. Suddenly you aren’t so worried about rushing through and making it quick.
Dinner becomes a great experience when you’re able to enjoy healthy foods together. Take time to eat as a family and enjoy a real conversation with each other. Talking will naturally slow down your eating pace, while also reconnecting you with your family members.
Using these techniques will bring all kinds of healthy benefits to your family and teach your children a healthy lifestyle. Healthy food choices are a possibility in your busy life if you take the time to plan ahead and make dinner time a priority in your home.
Natural lemon tea is so easy to make and has great health benefits! If you want to improve your immune system or boost your metabolism just follow these simple steps!
- Boil some hot water.
- Add some squeezed lemon juice.
- Enjoy your natural tea!
It’s that simple!
Hot lemon water helps stimulate the body’s immune system and prevents illness in the most natural way possible. This is because lemons are rich with Vitamin C, which is an antioxidant that plays an important role in causing resistance against many diseases. The hot temperature of the water, along with the Vitamin C will help in reducing coughs and loosening the thickness of mucus forming bacteria.
Another benefit to drinking hot lemon water is that it can be a natural aid to helping you regulate, or even lose some weight, if that is a goal of yours.
This is a more strategic approach, as the timing of your intake can help boost your results. Drinking hot lemon water in the morning is the best time for losing weight.
This is because warm water raises your body temperature, which increases your metabolism. Your metabolism is naturally higher in the morning as opposed to later in the evening. So it’s best to begin your day with an extra boost and start burning more calories early.
I hope you found this information helpful. Enjoy!
Kumbhakar S, Verma R, Biju B, (2016) “Effect of warm lemon water drink on selected parameters among the overweight female nursing students of RIMS & R, UP”. International Journal of Nursing Research & Practice, Vol 3 (1)
Al-Juhaimi F, Ghafoor K, (2013) “Bioactive compounds, antioxidant and physio-chemical properties of juice from lemon, mandarin, and orange fruits cultivated in Saudi Arabia” Pak. J. Bot., 45 (4): 1193-1196
Dhuique-Mayer, C., C.C. Veyrat, P. Ollitrault, F. Curk and M.J. Amiot. (2005). Varietal and inter specific influence on micronutrient contents in citrus from the Mediterranean area. J. Agric. Food Chem., 53: 2140-2145.