Fitness & Wellness

What Is The Paleo Diet

What Is The Paleo Diet

There’s always a new diet popping up that has merit. One of these diet philosophies it the paleo diet. It doesn’t use bizarre foods that you have to import or pay a fortune to get, but normal foods you’d find in Louisville, KY. It’s based on the premise that you eat foods like your ancestors ate. Not

your grandmother or grandfather, but going much further back to the age of the caveman, before farming was developed. They foraged for foods, as hunter-gatherers, eating wild beasts occasionally, but mostly, vegetation they found and the occasional bug when necessary. Bugs, by-the-way, aren’t part of the paleo diet, but they could be. They’re high in protein.

Paleo diets don’t contain grain or legumes.

Since the diet mimics preagriculture peoples, don’t expect to find any grain or legumes. Beans, dairy and grain simply aren’t part of it. It does contain many vegetables, so it’s far healthier than the average American diet right from the start. However, the exclusion of legumes based on the fact that they contain high amounts of phytic acid has been challenged by many people. Phytic acid is supposed to be an antinutrient according to many paleo enthusiasts. However, nuts are included in the diet, which also contain high amounts, yet they’re included. Just like oxylic acid interferes with the absorption of calcium in spinach, phytic acid interferes with the absorption of calcium, zinc and iron, but still provides nutrition enough to include it in a healthy diet.

Even though it’s called a caveman diet, you won’t be eating like a caveman.

Seriously, unless you forage in the backyard and eat some of those dandelion greens, (making sure they don’t have pesticides) or eat wild animals, your diet will be quite different from a caveman’s. It should be, cavemen didn’t have the luxury of foods out of season brought to them in refrigerated cars on trains. One of the biggest reasons noted for improved overall health, particularly dental health, was the ability to get fresh fruits and vegetables year round. However, unlike caveman days, it’s more expensive and harder to get grassfed beef and free-range chicken and eggs. These contain nutrients that aren’t in most commercial farm beef or chicken. .

There’s a lot to praise in the paleo diet that isn’t in the average American diet and some things missing.

The things that are missing are mostly things you don’t need to be healthy and even those things that are detrimental to your health. For instance, you won’t find refined sugar in a paleo diet or bread from refined bleached flour. There’s no diet anything, no soft drinks and no sugary cereal. What you will find is lots of protein and even more fresh greens and produce. It contains more omega-3 fatty acids than the average person eats. Of course, there’s no fried foods, trans fats or junk food.

  • r you, eliminating processed foods, as this diet does, can improve your overall health and help you lose weight.

The Best And Worst Low Carb Foods

The Best And Worst Low Carb Foods

To help you make the smartest choices in the food you eat, I’ve created an aid to choose from the best and worst low carb foods. Not all low carb foods are created equally. Low carb foods can help you on your goals toward weight loss, but some have more nutrition than others do. Obviously, the best ones will fall into the category of high nutrition and should be part of everyone’s daily diet. Not only will healthy low carb foods provide a way to boost nutrition, they also help you maintain weight after you lose those extra pounds.

You can get too much of a good thing.

While meat is part of a low carb diet, so is pork, eggs, butter and cheese. Right along with that butter are other types of fat, including high trans fats. Trans fats are the worst type of fats to eat, they provide no nutritional benefit and can increase the body’s bad cholesterol that causes heart disease. Even though foods containing saturated fat is also on the list, they’re not actually bad, since they raise both the good and bad cholesterol. You can get too much fat and too much protein if you’re not careful, but only transfats are a bad source of carbs. Too much protein is hard on the kidneys and liver.

There are more good low carb foods than bad ones.

Let’s start with the veggies. Broccoli, asparagus, spinach, leafy greens, cabbage and peppers are just a few of th nutritious low carb foods that should be on your list of those to eat. All these low carb vegetables are nutrient dense, so you’ll boost your overall health when you eat these. When adding fruit to your diet, stick with raspberries, blackberries and strawberries for the lowest number of carbs.

When choosing protein sources, choose wisely.

While nuts are allowed on a low carb diet, some are better than others. Brazil nuts, macadamia nuts and pecan are allowed to be eaten as often as you’d like. But pistachio and cashews are too high in carbs for that type of indulgence. For beef, lamb, game, pork and poultry choose gras-fed meats that are organic. Free range eggs should be at the top of your list, too. Most fish are allowed, but never bread them when you cook.

  • Mushrooms should also be on your list of good low carbs to eat. Sauteed in butter, they make a nice topper to red meat.
  • One simple rule to remember is that if it’s a vegetable that grows above the ground, it’s lower in carbs than those that grow below the ground.
  • Avocados not only provide healthy fat for a low carb diet, plus other nutrients, they fill you up so you aren’t as hungry. Try them with Tabasco or hot sauce, which is also low carb.
  • If you’re looking for great low carb topper for a burger, don’t turn to ketchup. Instead, consider mustard or mayonnaise. Both of these have far fewer carbs.

Should You Weigh Yourself Regularly

Should You Weigh Yourself Regularly

There’s never been a discussion on whether to weigh yourself regularly when you diet. The question has always been whether you should do it daily, weekly or less frequently. The verdict is in according to one study. It’s always been a given that weighing yourself helps you track your weight. While some programs require a weekly weigh-in, some newer studies show that weighing daily may actually help. While one study showed that men benefited from daily weigh-ins, but women didn’t, another study of only women showed the same results.

Weighing in weekly versus weighing in daily—which is best?

Conventional wisdom has always been toward regular weigh-ins on a weekly basis, rather than on a daily basis. There’s a reason for that. People’s weight vary from day to day, especially women’s weight. That can be depressing and counterproductive. However, a recent study showed that daily weigh-ins may actually help. One study that was undertaken by the University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University, included 294 female students showed that weighing daily had a beneficial effect on weight loss. The daily weighers showed a loss of body fat and a lower BMI over the two-year study.

Daily weigh-ins were the only dieting technique used in one study.

One study from Pacanowski and Levitsky of the University of Minnesota Division of Epidemiology & Community Health and Cornell University Division of Nutritional Sciences, showed that men actually lost weight when the only strategy used was daily weigh-ins. Women didn’t fare as well as men in this study. Half the group was told to weigh-in daily, while the other half wasn’t during the first year. The half weighing in daily lost weight. During the second year, the other half started weighing in and the men in that group also lost weight. The women’s weight did not change.

Having accountability helps.

Upon reviewing the records of 11,000 people who were overweight and in a weight management program, the results showed that people who had official weigh-ins with either a nurse or dietitian lost more than 5 percent of their total weight compared to those that didn’t. That’s a significant number that can lower the risk of developing a serious condition, such as diabetes.

  • One study showed no difference in weight loss between those who had daily weigh-ins and those who had weekly weigh-ins.
  • Studies show that people who are discouraged easily shouldn’t do daily weighing, but for others, the feedback from weigh-ins can help spur them onto more success.
  • No matter how often you weigh-in, do it the same time of day. If you weigh-in daily, do it in the morning for the most consistent reading.
  • Recording the weigh-ins also helps boost weight loss.

Could Sitting All Day Be Slowly Killing You?

Could Sitting All Day Be Slowly Killing You?

If you’re like many people, your job involves sitting all day and that could be slowly killing you. Studies show that you need to take a movement break at least once every thirty minutes to be at your fittest and avoid serious conditions that shorten your life. In other words, the more you sit, the bigger the potential for death or a life threatening condition.

People average sit more than previously considered.

The REGARD—Reasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke—study found the average person actually sits more than previously thought. One of the goals of the study was to find out why Blacks in the southern US tend to have a greater risk for stroke than their white counterparts. In order to do it, Keith Diaz, lead author of the study tracked 7,985 black and white participants that were 45 or older for four years. Rather than using self-reporting, which had been used in most studies, the team used technology, a hip-mounted accelerometers. The results showed that in a 16 hour day, the subjects of the study averaged 12.3 hours of sedentary behavior, considerably higher than the previously reported findings of ten hours.

The more the participants sat, the higher the potential for death.

The more participants sat, the more their potential for earlier death. For instance, people who sat 11 hours a day had half the risk of death when compared to those who sat 13 hours every day. They broke the information down even further to find that the length of time mattered as much as the amount of hours of setting. If a person sat 11 hours, but got up every 30 minutes and moved, the potential for death lowered by 55%. Those who sat 90 minutes or longer, had twice as high of a risk for death than those that sat for less than 90-minutes.

Just standing isn’t the answer either.

The study showed you needed to move, so standing desk or not, walk to the bathroom, get a cup of coffee or simply walk to the copy machine to make the copies you need. Planning your day so you can move every half hour should be a top priority. “Sitting is the new smoking,” but without the tax or the smell. The first part of that phrase came from Dr. James Levine, director of the Mayo Clinic at Arizona State University. Chronic sitting increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, breast cancer, colon cancer and kidney disease. It also boosts the potential for obesity, America’s leading cause of preventable deaths.

  • While a standing desk can bring benefits in other ways, if you’re not moving, the benefits are limited. Standing in the same position without moving for 60-90 minutes is just as bad as sitting in the same position for that length of time—but you do burn a few more calories. .
  • Don’t expect your workout at the gym to offset the risk of sitting. You’d have to do a minimum of an hour of intense exercise just to balance out the 6 to 7 hours of sitting you do every day. Note the word, intense, which is not recommended every day.
  • Find ways to be more active. Take the stairs, rather than the elevator. If you work in an office in an upper floor that’s that’s too tall to conquer (Seriously, I wouldn’t expect anyone to hike up 60 floors every day), take the elevator up part of the way and walk the rest.
  • Don’t use email or phone to talk to someone in your office. Get up and go to their desk as part of your break. If you’re on the cell phone, walk around the office while talking. Pacing counts!

Can Certain Exercises Remove Cellulite

Can Certain Exercises Remove Cellulite

No matter how overweight or thin you are, cellulite can be a problem. I’m constantly asked for the magic cure. The my that exercises remove cellulite is just that, a myth. But they do help to conceal the lumps and bumps of cellulite. Just like spot exercises, while they help remove fat deposits from all over the body, they don’t necessarily just attack the spot you’re exercising, but you are strengthening the underlying muscles and giving a more toned look to the area.

In order to effectively fight cellulite, you need to learn what causes it.

Nobody is really sure what causes cellulite, which doesn’t mean you can’t try to eradicate it. It’s actually fat cells that protrude through the connective tissues. Once it pushes through the collagen fibers, it protrudes. The thin layer of skin covering shows it as raised lumpy areas, which are normally on the bottom and thigh, but can occur on the upper arm and stomach, as well as other areas. While women have connective issue that’s vertical, men’s connective tissue is more criss-cross. That difference may account for the fact that more women than men have cellulite.

Other factors contribute to cellulite.

Women can’t seem to catch a break when it comes to cellulite. Hormonal factors may also play a role in its development. There are a number of theories how the estrogen, insulin, noradrenaline, prolactin and thyroid hormones all play a role. One of those is that menopause can slow the flow to the collagen fiber of the connective tissues. Less circulation mean less oxygen and less oxygen means a lower production of collagen. Not only that, menopause causes hormone levels to drop and less estrogen means larger fat cells. Menopause and aging also makes skin thinner, so the lumps are more noticeable.

A healthy diet and an active lifestyle can make a difference.

When you eat a healthy diet of whole foods, which is lower in sugar, you’ll help with overall weight loss and that can make the lumps and bumps look smaller as you lose weight all over your body. Cut out alcohol and lowering your carbohydrate intake helps too. Exercising regularly can improve overall circulation, sending oxygen to those areas to help build collagen or keep it stronger.

  • Not only do women have the problem of hormones interfering with circulation, they also cause women to store fat in their hips, thighs and bottom. The more fat stored, the more potential for cellulite.
  • You can boost your circulation with alternating hot to cold showers, cryotherapy full body treatments or massage.
  • Age and genetics play a role in how much cellulite a person has. Smoking also can increase cellulite. If you smoke, quit.
  • Strength training can help smooth the area of the cellulite out and make it far less noticeable. Lower body strength training will burn off fat, but most of all, it builds muscle tissue in the area.

Are You Working Out Hard Enough

Are You Working Out Hard Enough

Before you get the idea that you should discontinue all types of exercise because you’re not getting the results you want, you need to stop and see if you’re working out hard enough to make a difference. Don’t get me wrong, I applaud all forms of exercise. Doing something is always better than doing nothing at all, but for those who want to reach specific goals and see a difference from their workout, putting in the time isn’t enough. It takes commitment to getting the most from your workout time.

Can you zip through your workout without breaking a sweat?

That may be part of the problem. When you first started working out, you probably grunted and groaned a lot through each movement. The longer you worked out, the easier the routine became. That’s because the workout did what it was supposed to do, got you in better shape. However, if you’re still doing the same workout after several months, there’s a problem! Not only should you be increasing the number of reps, number of sets, intensity or amount of weight, you should be varying your workout. Your body becomes efficient, which means it burns fewer calories causing plateauing.

One sign you’re not working out hard enough is that you can talk while working out.

Heck, some people that are piking it, can even sing! While they may have great voices, they should be gasping for air while they bend, twist and lift their way to fitness. One test of effort from the U.S. Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion is how much you can say. If you can utter more than a few gasping works and don’t need a break, it’s time to ramp it up and get serious.

You’re not working out hard enough if you feel great and ready to go dancing after working out.

Don’t expect muscle soreness every time, but you should have it on the days you’ve worked your hardest. Otherwise, you haven’t given muscles a true workout, but at least you’ve kept moving. If you want more than just maintenance and make true progress, you’ve got to do more as you get fitter. Your body will let you know by mild soreness that reminds you that you’ve worked it hard. Remember, there’s a big difference between pain and soreness. Pain should never be ignored and soreness should be applauded for the hard work it took to create it.

  • If you’re getting the aid of technology and checking your heart rate, anything less than 64 percent of its maximum is piking it, between 64 and 76 percent is moderate and 76 and 90 percent is a great workout.
  • Seeing changes in your body is a top clue that you’re getting the workout you intended. If your weight hasn’t budged, but your not increasing your caloric intake and there’s no difference in muscle size or clothing size, you need to work harder.
  • If you leave the gym just as dry and cool as you came in and don’t even require a shower, you didn’t sweat…which means you didn’t workout as hard as you should have.
  • If you end the workout feeling like you still could do more, you haven’t worked hard enough.

Exercise To Prevent And Relieve Back Pain

Exercise To Prevent And Relieve Back Pain

Many people in the workforce find themselves facing the dilemma of being unable to sit comfortably, lift or even move because of excruciating back pain. That leads to one of the biggest reasons for disability claims. It doesn’t have to be that way. You can exercise to prevent and relieve back pain. There’s a lot of reasons for the surge of this painful condition. One of them is prolonged sitting. Lack of activity and functional fitness is at the top of the list. Your muscles need to stretch and move to be at their healthiest. Improved circulation, strength and flexibility help tremendously. At one time, muscle relaxers and pain medication were at the top of the treatment list. With the high rise in pain medication addiction and more understanding of the problem, that’s no longer true.

Prevent back pain before it starts.

Even if you don’t suffer from back pain yet, if you’re in a sedentary job and have no active outlet when not at work, the odds of suffering from it in the future are great. Your muscles need regular activity to be at their strongest and prevent tightening. When you sit at a desk, or even on the couch, for prolonged periods, the muscles in your lower back start to shorten, until eventually, you have a full-blown case of back pain. Exercising on a regular basis can reduce the risk of back pain, even in people who have episodes already.

Stretching is an effect way to prevent and manage back pain.

When your back hurts, you just want to lay down until the pain subsides, but that’s the worse thing you can do. One quick exercise that can help lower back pain does require you to lay on the floor. It’s the hamstring stretch. Grab a towel before you lay down. Put your feet flat on the floor with knees bent. Hold one end of the towel in each hand, creating a loop. Lift one leg and put the loop around the sole of the foot, still holding onto the towel ends. Try to straighten that leg by slowly pulling on the towel. While you may not keep pulling until it’s perpendicular to the body, you will feel the stretch at the back of the leg. Hold that position for about a half minute. Lower the leg and put the towel loop around the bottom of the other foot.

Laying on your back with another exercise can also loosen muscles.

Lay on your back with your feet flat on the floor and knees bent. Put your arms straight out to help maintain position. You should rock your knees from side to side a bit, to get your muscles warmed up and looser. Lower your legs to one side, trying to keep your shoulders flat to the floor at the same time. Try to get the outer knee on the side you’re twisting toward to touch the floor. Slowly lift your knees back up and twist them to the other side of your body.

  • Try the cat pose. If you watch cats, they’re constantly stretch. Get on your hands and knees. Inhale, and when you exhale, arch your back, head facing downward. Inhale, but this time as you do, allow your belly to drop and raising your head, creating a concave curve.
  • Create a bridge. Lay on the floor, knees bent. Lift your bottom off the floor, while pushing with your heels and squeezing your buttocks muscles. Hold, lower and repeat.
  • Pull your knee to your chest while laying on your back. You can do one at a time, keeping the other extended to slowly stretch the back muscles. You can also do the same thing pulling both at the same time, holding for a few seconds and then lowering the legs.
  • Build stronger stomach muscles. Your back is supported by both the abdominal and back muscles. That’s why building a stronger core is important.

Just Move!

Just Move!

If you want to extend your lifespan, just move! You don’t need a formal training program, although they do provide a wide assortment of exercises for your entire body and all types of fitness. Adding more movement to your life, whether it’s just getting up and walking for a few minutes or doing a jumping jack or two every ten minutes, can boost your longevity. Studies show that people who move more have better cardiovascular and metabolic function. In fact, inactivity is up at the top in number four position of preventable deaths. Obesity is number one and everyone knows that inactivity can lead to obesity.

You may be surprised to find you need to move more even if you do workout.

Sitting and inactivity is the enemy when it comes to good health. People who sit the longest have increased risk for diabetes and heart disease. Ironically, even fit people increased their risk of an earlier death if they sat for long periods. One study showed that sitting for six hours straight wiped out all the benefits you reaped working out regularly. That can explain a lot of things for those who find they have a serious condition, yet they ate healthy and worked out regularly, but were in a job that required prolonged sitting.

How much sitting is too much sitting?

If you’re at the computer or working at your desk for hours on end, you know that can’t be good. But did you know that sitting longer than fifty minutes every hour is too much. Sitting longer than three hours a day may be far too much too. A standing desk is one answer to the problem. Take it slowly. Don’t expect to be able to stand the whole day if you’ve previously sat during your work hours. Start with just ten minutes at a time and build on that.

Some jobs don’t have the potential for standing or moving frequently.

If you’re driving a truck, standing impossible—or at least super dangerous—while the truck is in motion. To make matters worse, it’s even tough to pull over every 50 minutes if you’re on a time schedule. Driving truck comes with such a risk of obesity that there are now many insurance companies starting programs to help drivers. For situations where people can’t get up and exercise 10 minutes every fifty minutes, a brisk workout when they stop is important. One group recommends working out 15 minutes every stop or mandated rest. Another says just a four minute workout is enough. No matter what, moving more when the opportunity arises is extremely important.

  • Moving more doesn’t necessarily mean a tough workout. Just walking more every day can get your blood circulating and improve your health.
  • Not only does walking more reduce the potential for death among obese individuals, it also reduces the potential for death among smokers.
  • If you’re chronically sitting on the job, you’ll definitely do your body a favor if you do have a program of regular exercise. While you do need more movement throughout the day, if it’s impossible to get, a workout program supplemented with walking on your day off helps.
  • The older you are, the more important moving frequently becomes. Adding walking to your daily routine and doing a few minutes of simple exercise throughout the day will help you stay healthier longer.

Herbs You Can Grow To Fight Inflammation

Herbs You Can Grow To Fight Inflammation

If you’ve heard the term “inflammation” but aren’t quite sure what it means, you probably aren’t alone. It occurs as a response from the body to protect itself. There are two types of inflammation and this is usually where people get confused. There’s the acute type that occurs all of a sudden, like bashing your finger or getting a cold. The body gets into gear and sends it’s soldiers, the white blood cells, to protect it from infection. It makes the area red and swollen. Chronic inflammation comes from continual exposure to toxins or stress. It can damage the heart and create walls to block accumulated plaque in the blood vessels. When those fail, it creates a clot and that can cause heart attacks and strokes. There are many medications to fight inflammation, but some of the best are found in your spice cabinet. You can save money by growing them yourself. Here are herbs you can grow to fight inflammation.

Plant those chili peppers and reap the rewards.

If you want to make your own anti-inflammatory cream, grow chili peppers. The hotter the pepper, the more capsaicin it provides. It’s in the white pith of the pepper that’s around the seeds and other membranes inside the pepper. While the outer flesh of the pepper isn’t as high, it does have some. Grow hot peppers in your garden, dry them and grind everything below the stem. You can mix this powder with a carrier oil to create capsaicin cream. Some people go fancy, adding beeswax and melting everything together for a salve to help eliminate muscle pain. One summer, in desperation, I grabbed a bunch of fresh, hot pepper, ground them up and mixed them with crushed aspirin and coconut oil for a cream that brought instant relief, while also being quite messy. Add chili peppers to your food to help stop internal inflammation and boost heart health.

Try growing turmeric in a pot.

Here in Louisville, we’re right on the border of whether you can grow turmeric outside. It really needs a warmer winter, but some people are successful by using plenty of mulch to overwinter. I grow mine in a pot. Turmeric and ginger root are great for many different ailments. Turmeric should be part of your daily diet. Turmeric contains curcumin, a natural anti-inflammatory. Besides fighting inflammation, which also may help prevent serious conditions like Alzheimer’s, it also helps fight depression, improves the skin, fights arthritis (inflammation) and slows or prevents blood clots. To make the powder, boil the fresh rhizome for about an hour. Slice thinly and dry in a 200 degree oven for about two hours. Grind to a fine powder and add to many dishes. It tastes delicious on steamed veggies.

Ginger may also require indoor wintering.

Just like turmeric, ginger is delicate, but still possible to grow in our zone. It not only helps prevent inflammation, it also helps with stomach or menstrual pain. It regulates blood sugar, helps prevent and relieve muscle pain from overactivity–drink some ginger tea after working out every day, helps stop fungal and bacterial infections, lowers cholesterol and so much more, including fighting inflammation. You use the root, just as you do with turmeric, but can use it fresh more easily. Ginger tea is one delicious way to use it.

  • Grow sage in your garden, it helps boost superoxide dismutase that changes the free radical superoxide—a cause of inflammation—to a harmless peroxide or oxygen molecule.
  • Lemongrass is easy to grow and looks great too. If you break off the leaves and rub them on you, it acts as a natural insect repellent. Make a tea from the leaves to get the anti-inflammatory benefits from this plant.
  • You can grow rosemary in a pot in zone 7 and winter it indoors. It’s a bit too cold for outside wintering. Rosemary was shown to be one of the top protectants against inflammation in a recent test, right along with turmeric and ginger.
  • Keep a potted aloe vera on the shelf for burns and cuts. It’s anti-inflammatory properties make them heal faster.

Reasons To Exercise Every Day, But Not Necessarily At The Gym

Reasons To Exercise Every Day, But Not Necessarily At The Gym

Just as there are reasons to exercise every day, there are a lot of reasons that workout is not necessarily at the gym. Exercising is more than just a regular workout doing body weight exercises, treadmill or other tough muscle stressing workouts. It’s getting out and having fun, while also improving your overall fitness. There are people who workout at the gym at high intensity levels for hours, every day. That’s not healthy! Your muscle groups need time to recoup. You need to have a blend of intensity levels, plus use a variety of different muscle groups.

Not only will varying your workout help prevent stress injuries, it will help you lose weight.

Sure, you’ve got that routine down and you can do it loaded with extra reps and extra weight, but suddenly you’re not shedding pounds like you did previously. What’s the problem? Why the plateauing? Your body has become too efficient at doing that same old routine. It doesn’t burn the same number of calories it did initially. When you do the same routine continuously, it reduces the number of calories you burn while doing it. Working out in the gym and alternating that workout with a day of walking, bike riding and other type of activity is the start to varying your workout. A personal trainer makes sure your workouts vary, so you don’t have the problem of plateauing.

Getting fit and exercising requires a lifestyle change.

Even though you’re going to the gym, if you’re a couch potato on the day’s you’re not, you’re not changing your lifestyle. Working out at the gym helps you get fit enough to enjoy all the fun activities that require extra energy and fitness. Boosting your out of gym activities really helps you make the change from sedentary to active all week long. Some activities that require extra energy, but aren’t draining, include gardening, swimming, home projects—construction, painting, etc., refurbishing old furniture and other hobbies can keep you active, without overtaxing the same muscles you worked out at the gym.

If you really love coming to the gym every day, then set some ground rules.

Some people simply enjoy their time at the gym. I’m one of those people. However, you need to set ground rules when it’s your avocation. If your workout is intense, with weights that test your nettle and you’re doing compound movements, you need time to recuperate. Listen to your body and you’ll avoid over-exercising. If your performance decreases, you find yourself lacking motivation, you have mood changes, delayed recovery time, elevated resting heart rate or fatigue, you need to give your body a break and skip a day to take a walk in the park or work in the garden.

  • Overworking your body can lead to insomnia, a weakened immune system and even fat gain. The stress it puts on the body increases the stress hormones that put on visceral weight, while also inhibiting hormones that boost muscle building.
  • You don’t have to worry about working out daily in the gym if your workout is moderate to light. The danger occurs when you’re continuously hitting it at full throttle.
  • You won’t necessarily make bigger strides by pumping weights and working out to exhaustion every day and you’ll find that besides the potential for physical problems, it can also cause burn out.
  • On the days off of the strenuous workout, your muscles heal and in the process grow. That doesn’t mean you can it idle. Enjoy the time with a leisurely walk or indulge yourself in a sauna or with a massage.