Face facts, even if you’re not flabby (as our headline proclaims), to stay fit you need to move. You can wear baggy sweats, but wearing chic workout wear definitely gives your mind and body a positive boost.
One of my favorite workout wear lines, is Marika and we’ve reviewed a number of their workout fashions in the past. Recently, they’ve started selling a well curated line of exercise tools, too. It only make sense that Marika would market fitness tools to go with the workout wear we already love.
The Marika Fitness web site now features exercise equipment including fitness balls, jump ropes, resistance bands of various sizes, plus a waist pack and a slimming fitness belt. All seem to be comparable in price to the ones you’d find in any athletic store.
The one thing everyone needs, especially if they’re going to exercise at home, is a workout mat. The Marika workout mat ($27.50) comes in four colors. This one, in cool grey, is nice for both men and women, but on the web site photos of bright purple, pink and turquoise show up, too. The one-sized 24″ X 72″ X .2″ , 5mm-thick mat is good for most floor exercises, although if you are new to working out, you might like something a bit thicker that will provide more padding for your knees and back. However the foam material is phthalate & latex free, and the non-slip surface helps keep you safe. An additional bonus is the thin string carry strap with two clear plastic toggles to cinch your rolled-up mat . It’s easy to use this strap to carry the mat to the gym, and also for neater storage at home. When you open your new mat you’ll see a little slip of paper with a link to a video from fitness trainer Lyric H. Ginsberg, with fitness tips, too.
Ready to work out? Here are some hot workout tips from The Advice Sisters and personal trainer and fitness expert, Carl Ditmars (who also used to be my personal trainer until he broke my heart by moving to the West Coast):
Be real: Get yourself moving and off the couch. Just remember, this is a lifetime change, not a quick fix. It didn’t take you six weeks to get out of shape, and it’s not going to just take an overnight fix to look better. There is no easy way to get healthy. Diets don’t work. Gimmicks don’t fix it. It takes hard work and dedication, and there are some limitations based on your current fitness level, age, medical history, genes, physical limitations, and time to commit to fitness.
Be patient: It didn’t take you six weeks to get out of shape, and it’s not going to just take an overnight fix to reach your fitness goals because it’s a process…long or short, depending upon your goals.
Don’t set yourself up to fail. If you take the right steps, the goals you set will become the results you want. When you are feeling discouraged think back to the first day you started exercising, and remember how you were then. Perhaps you could only do one pushup, but now you are able to do ten of them! That kind of improvement should motivate you to keep going. Plateaus don’t last forever….unless you give up!
Be realistic: hard-bodied actors and athletes look that that because it’s what they do for a living and they have every advantage to make their looks happen, They exercise eveyr day, for hours per day. ITS THEIR LIFE (it’s not your life). And, if it was that easy, no one would need this book!
Schedule fitness into your life: Any time is a good time to work out, as long as it is good for you. Despite what you may have heard, there isn’t a best time to work out.
Start Small: If you have haven’t ever done fitness training, or it’s been a long time since you’ve exercised, you will have to start small. You have to learn to walk first, before you can run. It almost the same with fitness, you need to build a base before you can advance. Don’t overdo so you don’t give your body enough time to recover. This can actually break down the muscles instead of building them up. When you break down a muscle, it stops reacting, because you are overworking it. Change your routines around so that the body recovers enough to get the desired results. For example, focus on your legs today, for example, tomorrow focus mostly on another body part.
Don’t Be Sore: Everybody gets sore when they first start, but also when they increase their efforts or change their routines. This doesn’t mean that you have been injured, it just means that you are using muscles that you haven’t used in a long time…or perhaps, ever.
Boredom Happens: Sometimes people get tired with the same old routine, so if that’s you, mix it up, maybe substituting a jump rope or hula hoop for walking, running, or other exercises.
Breathing Right is Must-Do: Knowing the right kind of breathing makes your routines more effective. There are different types of breathing styles depending upon what kind of exercise you’re doing. I believe in three different types: Positive/Negative breathing technique; Aggressive Explosion breathing; and a rapid breathing style. Each of these has a different purpose. Positive Negative is normal breathing style that you’ll use when you’re making a positive move (e.g. flexing a muscle). You want to breathe out (exhale) but then the second part is the negative move (going from flex to a normal position again) there, you want to inhale. What this does is help prevent lightheadedness and also the oxygen helps feed the muscle for better results. When you’re doing heavy lifting or body exercises that cause major muscle explosions such as leaping or jumping, you breathe with Aggressive Explosion: this is almost the same style as positive negative but with more aggressive bursts of air. And then there’s Rapid Breathing: This technique is great for when you are doing a repetitive, non-stop, quick movement such as sprinting or jogging. You need to breathe fast and constantly to keep your body supplied with enough oxygen. Just breathe in and out constantly. For example, during her 100 meter sprint, Olympic sprinter Jackie Joyner, will use a rapid breathing technique.
What are your best workout tips? Please share them in our comments section. The Advice Sisters and our other readers, friends and followers, will thank you.