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Don’t Like to Exercise? Here Are 6 Ways to Motivate

First, I was blown away by your reader comments on the last Better Than Ever post. Thank you for taking the time to read, share your stories and provide tips to help other MFPers! Second, because of your comments, I decided to take this month to provide thought starters for those of you who expressed losing a bit of steam when it comes to starting a workout program or staying on top of your current plan.

Fact: I used to despise working out.

There were points when I literally dreaded exercise; times when I had not only fallen off the wagon, but it backed up and rolled over me.

Regardless of the cause: a new relationship, new job, injury, life — the list goes on. It can be hard to get in the groove.

Initiating a workout regime is pretty daunting. If you’ve never gotten into a routine to begin with, or have fallen off, you know exercise can be awkward, annoying and seemingly unapproachable. It can also be a little embarrassing: How did I let myself get so out of shape … again? Are people judging me?

We’ve all been there. You walk into the gym, and it can be intimidating because everyone looks like they know what the heck they are doing. But, remind yourself: At one point that jacked guy on the rowing machine also didn’t even know where the water fountain was. He had to figure it out and you can, too.

For context, I now exercise religiously — 5–6 times a week — and I actually enjoy it.

Whaaaaat?!

True, I still don’t wake up most days daydreaming about the elliptical machine, but I do dream about that feeling after the workout.

My advice to you is: Instead of putting energy into dreaming up excuses, think about what you love about exercising, and use that for confidence and motivation when your will is running low.


READ MORE > ARE YOU AN ATHLETE?


Here are six go-to motivators (aka why I workout):

1. ENJOYING FELLOWSHIP

Rally a friend (or two) to be your accountabilibuddy and get started. There have been times when I’ve only made it to a workout because I didn’t want to let my friend down. I have two separate groups of Under Armour teammates (that’s UA speak for “coworkers”) who I work out with for support and fun. There’s nothing like taking on a physical challenge to bring you closer together.

I also have some of my funniest life moments because of shared workout experiences, like the time my friend Georgette walked out halfway through a megaformer class, and we found her at a subterranean bar next door drinking tequila (still in gym clothes)!

2. HAVING A SENSE OF ACCOMPLISHMENT

There’s nothing more motivating than seeing progress and accomplishing your goals. It’s gratifying to improve and be able to do more over time. Whether it’s sliding the pin in the weight machine to the heavier weight, bumping up the incline on the treadmill or adding an extra lap around the block after dinner. It’s exciting to see (and feel) your body taking on more. Start by writing down your exercise goals and create realistic milestones to accomplish them.

3. FITTING INTO CLOTHES

If you’ve ever gained or lost weight, you know that getting dressed in the morning can be a struggle (I’ve had sizes 6–16 in my closet at the same time before … sigh). The other day a coworker stopped by my desk and asked me what I was training for because he saw me going pretty hard in the gym. I responded with “I just want to continue to fit into my clothes.” We both laughed out loud, but it’s true! I love food, I love cooking, I love eating — and with all of that comes calories, which is OK as long as I’m strategic. Personally, if I don’t stay on track with my meal logging on MyFitnessPal or I start skipping workouts, I notice the difference pretty fast — my body just rebels against my wardrobe. Quickly.


READ MORE > OK. YOU GAINED WEIGHT. THESE 5 TIPS WILL GET YOU BACK ON TRACK


4. FINDING THE HAPPY PLACE

Studies show that the post-workout high is a real thing. You feel better. You’ll be proud you took the time to invest in yourself. A single workout can help clear your head so you can face whatever is causing stress with a better outlook. I often walk away from a sweat session with my focus reset and a forward-looking perspective.

If I miss a workout, my drive dips, and I’m in a general funk. There have been countless occasions when I’ve laid in bed at night and regretted not finding time for a workout. On the other hand, I have never regretted working out.

In need of some moves? These stress busting stretches are great for a beginner, can increase your flexibility, ease soreness and get you ready to get back in the game (with no equipment required).

5. TREATING YOURSELF

Recognize what motivates you and incorporate it into your reward for hitting an exercise goal. You could treat yourself by trying a new recipe on MFP (I usually make extra and save it for lunch later in the week.) Or reward yourself with a splurge: there have been occasions when  thinking about that post-workout burger has fueled me through the workout. A rest day can also be a necessary reward to incorporate into your routine. You’ve got to create time for self-care.

6. BECAUSE YOU CAN

If you’ve overcome an illness, injury or anything that prevented you from working out, you know what it feels like to be unable to push yourself physically — it’s frustrating and can be depressing. But that experience can also give you a greater appreciation for your health and strength. Considering there were years when I spent more days on crutches than my feet (due to knee injuries), I often think about how grateful I am to even have the option to exercise and that’s enough to get me moving.

I know I’m not in the best shape of my life (shoutout to my 17 year-old self), but I’m putting in the effort to improve. And you know what? I feel better than ever about the progress I’ve made and what my body can accomplish. It’s a phenomenal feeling.

So while you might not enjoy working out right now, hopefully these six motivators will help get you on track.

Are you struggling to find a workout routine you can enjoy? Do you genuinely enjoy working out (which is awesome!)? How do you motivate yourself to exercise? What’s your “happy” workout place? Share your tips below! I (along with the rest of the MFP community) look forward to hearing from you!


Better Than Ever

We all strive for wellness and to live better! Every month, this column will bring you advice on how to feel and perform Better Than Ever. Check out tips to improve various aspects of your health: Everything from fitness, nutrition, sleep and recovery. Have a topic you want to hear about? Feel free to reach out here (I’ll be checking the comments!) or on Twitter or Instagram. I look forward to hearing from you!


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The post Don’t Like to Exercise? Here Are 6 Ways to Motivate appeared first on Under Armour.

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A Flexible Lifestyle: The Power of Stretching

Ever since I was 8 years old, I understood the importance of stretching. As a dancer, athlete and performer, I can say without a doubt that stretching plays one of the biggest roles in my success. In ballet class, we’d spend the entire time active stretching at the barre. We would stretch before and after every class. After so many years, I became hard-wired to “active/dynamic stretch” to prep for dancing, then stretch after dancing to recover and get rid of toxins and lactic acid build up. It was ingrained and automatic, and one of the best healthy habits that I’ve held onto.

Stretching is not just sitting in a position and holding it there until you want to cry. It starts with observing what’s tight or achy, then researching various ways to lengthen and stretch the muscles in different ways. Lastly, and most importantly, there’s breathing.

BREATHE AS YOU STRETCH

Learning how to breathe before, during and coming out of a stretch is what people neglect the most. Use your breath to increase the intensity of your stretches. Move into your stretch on an exhale. Every time you inhale, hold the stretch. On each exhale, try to go further into the stretch, without forcing or tightening your muscles. Basically, sometimes there’s a point in a stretch where your body reflexes out of it, focus on breathing out and through that to retrain your muscles to tolerate more flexibility. The appropriate time to be in a stretch is actually two minutes!  

THE BENEFITS OF STRETCHING

Being limber helps your body have more range of motion so that you can assume new and different positions without the risk of tearing or straining something. My boyfriend is a professional skateboarder and has no prior knowledge of stretching and how it can help prevent injuries. So I’ve taught him to loosen areas where he’s been really tight — and he had no idea! It was really cool to coach him through loosening his hips and to see how much it has helped him.


READ MORE > 8 MUST-DO STRETCHES TO PREVENT AND RECOVER FROM WORKOUT INJURIES


As a professional dancer, we don’t have guided warmups before auditions, rehearsals or even live performances. Our bodies have to be 100% ready when we step on stage. There’s a lot of prep before a performance so we can do our ultimate best each time without getting injured.

HOW I STRETCH

I love coming home after a long eight-hour rehearsal and stretch out the day. I’ll just plop down on the floor with a foam roller and some lacrosse balls and close my eyes. I’m not that talented at meditating, so I use stretching to help me calm my mind. I’ll find my breath and wring out any residual stress. It’s like a mental cleanse before hopping into bed then starting a new day.


READ MORE > 5-POSE YOGA FIX FOR DESK DWELLERS


Stretching isn’t just for those who are really active. It helps everyone. Even on a 9–5 workday when you don’t leave your desk once and you’re too tired to go to the gym, you go home and stretch! Stretch while reading or while watching TV. After sitting in that chair all day your back needs to be lengthened, your shoulders and chest opened from hunching over, your hips loosened and wrists unlocked. You will feel like a new human, trust me.


Shop Dani Vitale’s favorite Under Armour gear.


The post A Flexible Lifestyle: The Power of Stretching appeared first on Under Armour.

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4 Ways To Detox Daily!

Ways To Detox Daily!

Hello All!!!

The word ‘detox’ is on everyone’s mind these days! But the majority of them do not even know how it actually works. It is thought that detoxing the body is a complicated process but that isn’t true! You do not need to shift to a juice only diet. The body is said to detoxify itself naturally everyday!

It is said that morning hours are ideal for helping the body get rid of toxins. Here are a few ways to detox daily that will help you stay full of energy the whole day and maintain good health.

1) Scraping the tongue

tongue health

The practice of tongue scraping is very much there in our Ayurvedic rituals. Tongue scraping involves removing bacteria and toxins from the tongue’s surface. This is done in the morning as during the night the digestive system removes the toxins from within and sends them to the tongue.

When you remove these toxins as soon as you wake up, you avoid swallowing them back into your system. Thus, you prevent digestive issues. It is said that tongue scraping is more effective than brushing your teeth as most of the toxins present in the mouth are there on your tongue.

So scrap your tongue and begin the day with a detoxified digestive system and enhanced immunity.

2) Oil Pulling

Some Amazing Yoga Kriyas-oil pulling

Another ancient Ayurvedic practice that has been in the limelight is oil pulling. It has a lot of health benefits to offer. You need to swish sesame oil (you can use coconut oil too) in your mouth for 10 to 15 minutes as soon as you wake up. Do this on an empty stomach as this not just improves oral health but even overall health. Oil pulling helps in drawing toxins outside the body.

Make sure that you spit the oil out and not swallow it! Do it on a daily basis.

3) Warm water

Hot water diet for weight loss

In the morning you need to replenish your body with fluids. Are you aware of the fact that when you drink warm water first thing in the morning, your metabolism gets boosted up? Drinking water on an empty stomach in the morning helps in stimulating the digestive-colic reflex and it can help in eliminating the stuff sitting in your intestines since a day before.

Adding a dash of lemon and some honey into your glass of warm water is a plus!

4) First smoothie of the day

fruit smoothie

A smoothie is a great way to begin the day! You can get everything, right from healthy fats to greens from your smoothie. Beginning your day with a liquid meal like a smoothie will prevent you from feeling bloated. Also it will make you feel lighter and more energetic all day long as lesser amount of energy will go towards digestion when compared to a heavier meal.

The bottom line

These are 4 easy ways to detox yourself and start feeling good about yourself. Try to incorporate them into your daily life. You should be able to feel energized all day long.

Hope you liked reading this post on ways to detox daily!

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The post 4 Ways To Detox Daily! appeared first on Indian Weight Loss Blog.

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Burn More Calories in Less Time with Burpees

Burpees are sweet, sweet torture. What other exercise provides a head-to-toe fat-burning workout with zero equipment? The answer is none, at least not to the degree that burpees do.

That’s the good news. The bad news is that burpees are often performed with bad form and poor planning. Take an effective exercise, do it incorrectly with no rhyme or reason and suddenly you’ve got a not-so-great situation.

But never fear. This article will show you how to do burpees with pristine technique — and how to regress them if necessary — and give you a workout plan that takes just five minutes.


READ MORE > HIIT FOR BEGINNERS WEEK 2: BODYWEIGHT STRENGTH CIRCUIT


ARE YOU READY FOR BURPEES?

Not everyone is ready to do burpees on Day One. Because burpees are supposed to be done quickly with maximal effort, it’s challenging to maintain perfect form. Sloppy technique could irritate your shoulders, wrists or lower back, so try these regressions first:

HANDS-ELEVATED BURPEE

The simplest way to make a burpee easier is to elevate your hands on a box or bench. This decreases the upper-body demands and takes stress off the lower back.

MEDICINE BALL THRUSTER

If burpees are a no-go for whatever reason, medicine ball thrusters provide a solid full-body alternative that mimics the burpee without any impact on the shoulders or lower back.

THE WORKOUT: BURPEE PROGRESSION LADDER

This five-minute workout combines three burpee progressions for an all-out fat-burning attack. You start each round with the easiest exercise and progress to the hardest exercise, reducing the number of reps each round. This allows you to keep working hard even as you fatigue.

ROUND 1
Med Ball Thruster x 12 reps
Hands-Elevated Burpee x 10 reps
Burpee x 8 reps
Rest 30 seconds

ROUND 2
Med Ball Thruster x 10 reps
Hands-Elevated Burpee x 8 reps
Burpee x 6 reps
Rest 30 seconds

ROUND 3
Med Ball Thruster x 8 reps
Hands-Elevated Burpee x 6 reps
Burpee x 4 reps
Rest 30 seconds

ROUND 4
Med Ball Thruster x 6 reps
Hands-Elevated Burpee x 4 reps
Burpee x 2 reps

The post Burn More Calories in Less Time with Burpees appeared first on Under Armour.

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