Tag: Be Broncho Fit! – Page 2

Breathing During Exercise

This might sound silly but most people do not know how to properly breathe during exercise. When people begin a fitness program, they understandably have lots of questions, from how to perform certain moves to which exercises are most effective. One question that everyone seems to ask is how to breathe properly when working out.

Step 1

Stand relaxed and take two or three deep breaths before starting any exercise. Use this time to practice deep breathing by breathing in through your nose so air fills all of your lungs. Make your ribs expand with each breath to minimize shallow breathing.

Step 2

Start with the muscle you’ll be exercising in a lengthened position. Inhale deeply through the nose to prepare yourself for movement.

Step 3

Exhale as you lift the weight during the exertion phase of the exercise as the muscle shortens. Exhale forcefully through the mouth and nose, contracting your abdominal muscles. Do not hold the breath.

Step 4

Inhale and exhale rhythmically during cardiovascular exercise. Take deep breaths in through the nose as much as possible. Higher intensity exercise may require both nose and mouth breathing.

Brett Mendenhall

Blog Bros.

Get Out of that Rut!

It is inevitable that at one point or another during your workout progression you will experience a plateau. This happens when you are stuck at the same bench press weight or at that same time for your timed mile. This is commonly seen and you are not alone if you stuck right now! The below tips may help overcome that plateau and get you back on the track to progress.

Change up routine

Your body, just like anything else, adapts to change. If you are going to the gym with the same workout everyday, your body and muscles are going to get used to the same boring workout. A great way to do this is to target certain muscle groups on certain days such as:

Monday: Chest, triceps, abs

Tuesday: Back, biceps, calves

Wednesday: Cardio

Thursday: Hamstrings, quads, abs

Friday: Shoulders, traps, calves

A workout such as this allows muscle groups adequate time to rest before being worked out again.

Add drop-sets

You don’t have to lift the same weight ten times for three sets every single time you hit the gym. Adding in a drop set is a great way to basically work your muscle to failure, maximizing the window for gains. An example of a drop-set curl is below:

Dumbbell curls

Set 1: 40lbs for 8-10 reps

Set 2:  40lbs for 8-10 reps

Set 3: 20lbs rep to failure

Add super-sets

Super-setting exercises is an effective way to work a muscle group in different ways by minimizing the amount of rest between sets and exercises. Below is an example of a super-set tricep workout. using Cable pull-downs with a rope & dumbbell kickbacks.

Set 1:

Pull-downs for 8-10 reps

Kickbacks for 8-10 reps

Rest 30-45 seconds

Set 2:

Pull-downs for 8-10 reps

Kickbacks for 8-10 reps

Rest 30-45 seconds

Set 3:

Pull-downs for 8-10 reps

Kickbacks for 8-10 reps

These are just a few ways to help you overcome those plateaus. There is no “one size fits all” way to achieve your goals. Everyone is different and everyone’s bodies work and adapt differently. The only sure way to find the right workout and routine is by trial and error. Remember to know your limits and not to push yourself too far. Focus on your goals and you will get there with common sense, confidence, and determination!

Kyle Knouse

Blog Bros

Stretching for Golf

It’s officially the beginning of golf season, and everyone is looking for ways to improve their golf game. A great and easy way to improve the golf game is by increasing your flexibility.

A common question is “Why is flexibility important for golf?” A simple answer is you will create a greater range of motion in your golf swing. Flexibility is key to increasing hip speed, and producing a greater shoulder turn. Increased hip speed and greater shoulder turn will result in more power and a more consistent golf swing.

The stretches seen below should be performed at least 3-4 days a week, and every stretch should be held for 15-30 seconds. An important thing to remember in the stretches is to stretch until mild discomfort, do not hold the stretch if it’s too painful, this could result in an injury. Perform these stretches at night, or after a round of golf.

Hamstring Stretch:  Start with both knees bent raise one leg up and try to straighten this leg by placing both hands behind thigh and pulling towards your face. Repeat on other leg for 15-30 seconds.

Neck Stretch: Place hand on top of your head, and pull your left or right ear towards your shoulder. There should be a stretch felt in the neck opposite of where you are pulling. Hold for 15-30 seconds repeat on the opposite side.

Standing Side Bends: Place your right or left hand above your head as pictured above and bend in the direction that your hand in the air is pointing. Should feel a stretch on the side of your body a little above your hips. Hold for 15-30 seconds and repeat on opposite side.

Gluteus Stretch: Lying on your back cross one leg over the other knee. Raise your knee and pull the thigh toward the chest to obtain a stretch in the opposite buttocks region. Hold for 15-30 seconds and repeat on opposite side.

Shoulder Stretch: Pull the left or right arm across the body as seen above, and you should feel a stretch in the back of the shoulder. Hold for 15-30 seconds.

Chest Stretch: Against a doorframe place both hands as picture and lean forward until you feel a decent stretch. Perform this stretch twice hold each stretch for 15 seconds.

SOURCE: http://ptclinic.com/medlibrary/pdf/768.pdf

By Kyle Moseley

Blog Bros.




Play your way to a fit lifestyle

In today’s world of exercise, the hardest category to meet recommendations in has got to be the “aerobic activity” category.  To reach a high level of cardiorespiratory fitness most people think that you have to walk briskly or do a slow jog for a prolonged period of time.  This misunderstanding could very well be a reason individuals don’t reach the American College of Sports Medicine’s (ACSM) recommendations of 150-300 total minutes of aerobic activity per week.  So is there a secret to making these numbers attainable?  Sure!  The secret is to make these exercise bouts enjoyable and make them fit into your specific lifestyle!  Yes, the answer is to play more.

Any physical activity that elevates your heart rate for at least 10 minutes can be counted as cardioresiratory activity.  This means that the old thinking of “low and slow” aerobic exercise can be set aside, and a new era of recreational aerobic fitness can arise!  Here are some great (and fun) examples that could help you reach ACSM recommendations:

-Basketball game (pick-up game or shoot around).

-Bike ride with family or friends.  (one hour ride can be very easy and enjoyable).

-Take the dog for a walk.

-Park at the edge of parking lot and walk in (work, grocery store, school, etc.).

-Play a game of sand volleyball.

-Go swimming!

-Go on a weekly hike!

-Kick a soccer ball around.

-Get up and dance!

-Jog around your favorite lake. (If you don’t enjoy jogging at least do it where you can enjoy the scenery).

So the next time someone asks you what you do to stay fit, tell them that you “play your way to fitness”!  Physical activity can be contagious, especially when that activity is something that you truly enjoy doing.  So the next time you are thinking about how much you don’t want to “exercise” just remember that physical activity can be fun, and is an imperative part of reaching the optimum health we all chase!

Malaki Bolton

Blog Bros.

Using a Heart Rate Monitor to Burn Fat in 8 Steps

Most people believe the harder you exercise the more fat you will burn but the truth is you burn fat more effectively while exercising at medium intensity. Medium intensity is about 80 percent of your maximal heart rate. This is important because energy used from fat is less likely to be replaced.  When glycogen from sugar is used as a fuel source your insulin level drops and you become hungry and are driven to replace those calories.  That is why you often hear people say things like, “I exercised for weeks and did not lose a single pound of fat.”  These people probably exercised too hard! Here are 8 steps to exercise with a heart rate monitor.

Step 1: Determine your max heart rate using this table from the American Heart Association or determine maximum heart rate by subtracting your age from 220. For example, a 20-year-old would have a maximum heart rate of 200 (220 minus 20 = 200).

Step 2: Determine your heart rate range during exercise. The lowest rate should be 60 percent of your maximum heart rate, and the highest rate should be 90 percent. For a 20-year-old, these two rates would be 120 and 180 beats per minute. Keep these numbers in mind as your heart rate goals while exercising.

Step 3: Put on the heart rate monitor, which should include a chest strap and a wristwatch. The watch will get the best signal if you lightly moisten the chest strap before putting it on.

Step 4: Turn on the watch and begin the exercise. Warm up to your lowest heart rate goal (60%) for three to five minutes.

Step 5: Increase your heart rate by five to 10 beats per minute and exercise for four minutes.

Step 6: Increase your heart rate by 15 beats a minute for one minute. You do not need to wait until you reach this higher heart rate to start the one minute–instead it may take one full minute to reach this higher heart rate goal. After one minute, whether you’ve reached the goal or not, go back down to the preceding heart rate. For example, if you were exercising at 130 beats per minute, you will increase your heart rate until it reaches 145 beats per minute or until one minute has passed and then lower back down.

Step 7: Repeat this four-minute-low, one-minute-high pattern at least four times for a 20-minute workout or more times for a longer workout.

Step 8: To cool down decrease your intensity level to below your lowest heart rate goal and back to your resting rate for the next three to five minutes.

This pattern of varing the workout intensity in called interval training.

~Brett Mendenhall

~Blog Bros





An 8-minute Abdominal Workout

Fitness professionals use the acronym FITT to plan workouts. Here is a quick abdominal workout planned using FITT.

  • F(frequency): 3 times per week
  • I(intensity): Each exercise should be performed at maximal effort.
  • T(time): 8 minutes total: 4 exercises each performed 1 time for 2 minutes without stopping! If two minutes is too difficult, start by performing each exercise for as long as you can and build up to 2 minutes over the course of a couple weeks.
  • T(type): Toning/strength training

Exercise routine:

1. Partial curl up: Lying on back knees flexed as seen in the picture. Arms are extended and rested on the thighs. Curl up until the shoulders come up off of the ground and then go back down. Repeat for 2 straight minutes. Target: Upper abs

2. Bicycle: Lie flat on the floor with your lower back pressed to the ground. Your head should be elevated with your hands behind your head. Bring your knees up to about a 45-degree angle. Now move your legs in a bicycle pedal motion. Perform for 2 straight minutes. Target: Lower abs

3. Side Plank: Lie on left side, place left forearm as seen in the picture. Now elevate at the hips. Make sure your opposite arm is on your side, so your not supporting yourself with the off arm. Repeat on the right side. Perform once on the left side for 1 minute, perform once on the right side for 1 minute. Target: Obliques (or side abs)

4. Mountain climbers: Place your self in the basic push up position, bring your left knee up to your chest and then back to the starting position, then quickly bring your right leg to your chest and back to original position. Repeat for 2 straight minutes. Target: Lower abs

SOURCE: www.physiotec.org

Kyle Moseley
Blog Bros

Snack Your Way to Good Nutrition!

In today’s world of fast food restaurants and dollar menu items it can be nearly impossible to make good nutritional choices.  With a few of these “dollar menu” items, an individual can almost reach half of the daily recommended caloric intake of 2,000 calories.  So what is the answer to break free of the ease of fast food and start feeding your body so that it is no longer nutritionally starving?  The answer is to snack your heart out!  The key to making this work is to simply snack on healthy, high-nutrition snacks.

Since we were children, we’ve always heard that breakfast is the “most important meal of the day”.  Why is this?  This mentality was formed because of the fact that people who ate breakfast tended to consume less calories throughout the day!  So why don’t we just start eating right first thing in the morning?  Here are a list of easy snacks that may cut the calories, but are full of flavor!

Morning time snacks:

  • cereal with yogurt (your flavor of choice) and a handful of blueberries.
  • boiled egg whites with fat-free cottage cheese.
  • sliced apple pieces with peanut butter.
  • yogurt with a handful of roasted almonds.
  • oatmeal with raspberries/blueberries and a teaspoon of peanut butter.

Making a choice like one of these early in the morning can kickstart your morning and influence you throughout the day to make healthier dietary choices.  Never be afraid to break out of your old routine!  And always remember, the brighter the color of the food, the better it is for you in most cases!

Lunch time snacks:

  • any 2 fresh fruits of your choice (the original “fast food”)
  • slice one whole cucumber and lightly salt or dip in fat-free ranch (in place of the usual bag of chips).
  • grab a handful or two of almonds or walnuts (great unsaturated fats).
  • celery sticks with peanut butter (even with a few chocolate chips)
  • pita chips dipped in guacamole or hummus. (avocados are a super food!)
  • 25 frozen grapes.

Remember that your body’s feeling of “hunger” is its way to tell you that it needs nutrition, not junk food (empty calories).  The next time you are thinking about what you should grab before you run off to your busy life, slow down and snack your way to better nutrition!

  • Malaki Bolton
  • Blog Bros