Archive for the Weightlifting Category

Fitness Tip of the Day: Flexibility Training to Improve Squats

If you are unable to perform a squat, one of our body’s primal moves; flexibility may be the problem not strength. A properly performed squat requires flexibility through the kinetic chain from the ankles, up to the legs, hips and shoulders. If range of motion is limited, squat technique will be poor. The body will compensate with dysfunctional movement patterns such as the rounding of the back, head and chest may drop forward, and heels may lift off the floor. These patterns can result in injury.

As a fitness trainer, I first recommend developing flexibility through a progressive stretching program. I recommend stretching the same amount of time that you spend exercising. If you worked out for an hour, stretch for an hour.

Never stretch upon waking when muscles are cold. Optimally, stretch after a workout or before bed. Always go in to a stretch slow and controlled; no bouncing or jerking movements. Stretch each muscle 3 times holding each stretch for 30 to 90 seconds.

The better your flexibility, the better the squat.

Author: Sharon’s Personal Training
Female Fitness Trainer of Tucson

Personal Trainer Tip: Build Muscle and Lose Fat Through Weight Training

Lose weight and that pesky belly fat through weight training. Here’s how. Perform supersets of lower body and upper body exercises with a short rest period of only 30 seconds. Here is a sample workout.

Perform Squats and go right into an Overhead Press. Rest 30 seconds. Repeat two more times.

Slow Step Ups with an Upright Row.

Superset Planks with Reverse Sit Ups

Superset Biceps Curls with Triceps Pulldowns

Start with 3 sets each, 30 seconds rest between each superset, use a weight in which you could perform 10 to 15 reps.

If you’re already in good condition, increase the loads to accommodate a rep range of 8 to 10, and perform 4 sets.

This is a great way to build muscle and lose fat at the same time. And an added bonus, if you do it at the correct intensity; it will be a cardio workout as well!

Sharon of Sharon’s Personal Training

Female Fitness Trainer of Tucson

Weight lifting tip of the day

Use thick-bar training to improve grip and forearm strength. If your gym does not have Thick-bar barbells, invest in a pair of Fat Gripz. They are made of dense, hard rubber and fit over any pair of dumbbells or barbells. The wide grip will recruit more muscle fibers, thereby increasing muscle size and strength. You may need to decrease the weight normally used as the wide grip will increase difficulty.

Fat Gripz can be purchased at:  www.FatGripz.com or www.Amazon.com

Sharon Powell

Fitness trainer of Tucson


Personal Trainer Tip of the Day: Perform Overhead Squats

Overhead squats are rarely performed but offer a great full-body workout. They also help to improve posture if you have rounded shoulders. Here’s how it’s done: place a dowel on top of your head and position your hands so that elbows are at a 90 degree angle. Now raise the dowel above your head so that your arms are straight and fully extended. Perform a regular squat keeping the dowel over your shoulders with arms fully extended. Focus on keeping your shoulder blades down and pinched together. This will help keep the dowel stay in alignment. Be sure to also maintain correct squat fundamentals such as keeping your heels planted and knees in line with your feet. Once you can successfully perform the overhead squat with a dowel, add weight by using a BodyBar or barbell.

Good luck!

Sharon Powell

Female Fitness Trainer of Tucson

How a Personal Trainer Can Help During Cancer Treatment

By: Jackie Clark

A cancer diagnosis can be one of the most challenging experiences in many peoples’ lives. While an exercise program is not a substitute for chemotherapy and cancer treatment under a healthcare provider, it does offer valuable benefits for anyone fighting cancer.

Chemotherapy works by preventing some cells in the body from reproducing. It works predominantly on rapidly producing cells, but can have negative impacts on the entire body. Cancer consists of normal human body cells that reproduce very rapidly, outside of the control of the body. When chemotherapy attacks these rapidly reproducing cells, it also impacts other cells in the body that reproduce rapidly. These include cells that produce hair, blood, muscle, and other parts of the body.

Chemotherapy often results in a feeling of lethargy, a dull aching pain, loss of appetite, and depression. Mesothelioma patients often may experience pain on the surface of the body, as chemotherapy works to eliminate cancer cells. For many individuals, exercise can help reduce several of the symptoms of chemotherapy.

A personal trainer can guide a cancer patient through a variety of different exercises, which offer many health benefits. Exercise boosts levels of endorphins in the brain, which can help fight depression and pain. Endorphins are the natural equivalent of pain medicine, and can offer relief for up to several hours after exercise. Exercise also boosts appetite, which can be lowered during cancer therapy.

By using a personal trainer, a cancer patient will be able to concentrate on exercises that are the most beneficial to him or her. For some types of cancer, certain exercises may exacerbate symptoms or increase pain. By working around these areas, a certified trainer can help an individual design an exercise plan best suited to his or her condition.

For many patients, a mesothelioma prognosis can be a life-changing experience, but with the right care and emotional support, it’s possible to recover. Many cancer patients feel a sense of despair and uncertainty with a cancer prognosis, but the right diet, exercise, and cancer therapy can allow an individual to maintain a high quality of life while undergoing treatment. Odds of successful recovery can be improved for many patients with the right exercise plan, so following a comprehensive recovery strategy can have one back to their normal life very soon.

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