Sunday, January 23, 2011

Introduction to January Exercise of The Month

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Bodyweighted Exercises for Improved Fitness and Performance

What is the best way to get in shape? Are there better exercises to incorporate into a structured workout program? What exercises deliver really good bank for your buck?

In this blog post we will explore types of exercises that will really help in assisting you to achieve your fitness goals in 2011.

Body weighted Exercises 101

The fitness industry has exploded with all kinds of fitness machines that it can make going to the gym a frustrating experience. All of these shiny, neat looking machines are really nice to look at, and they do serve a purpose however, one of the best ways to train is still the use of your own body weight, a few dumbbells and a bench.

The K.I.S.S Principal

Keep it simple Simon! This principal is best applied to training. If you are a beginner the best thing to do when training is to make sure you hit all the major muscles groups in the body.

The most efficient way to do this is through compound movements, meaning a movement that involves two or more joints. For example a squat is a compound movement because the hips, and knees are involved. This makes the squat the king of all body weighted exercises, due to the high amount of muscle mass it recruits in the legs and core.

Pull ups or Chin ups are also a great exercise which involve the shoulder joint and elbow joint. This is a great exercise to develop a nice back and arms. If you cannot do a full chin-up, use an assisted chin up machine, that will basically reduce the amount of body weight lifted.

Next is the push-up. This exercise is one of the most underutilized exercises. A push-up can have amazing effect on the strength of the upper body, yet many individuals do not do push-ups correctly or do not do them at all because they think that the push-up is less effective then a bench press. If done correctly the push-up can really build the strength in your core, chest, shoulders and triceps. In addition once you get good at doing push-ups correctly, then there are many, many variations that can add a great deal of intensity to this exercise.

The next king of the body weighted exercise is the deadlift. There are two versions of the deadlift, one being with the knees locked and the other being a squatting type of motion. Both are effective, but the stiff-legged deadlift works more on the hamstrings, core, lower back and some upper body, whereas the regular deadlift focuses on the quads, glutes, hamstrings, lower back, core and some upper body stabilizing muscles.

These four basic exercises should be the focus of anyone who is beginning an exercise program. These four exercises serve as the foundation of a training program. Once you have set a good foundation with these exercises then you can always incorporate some machines into your workout.

As always, If you have any questions regarding training, stairclimbing or getting into great shape you can contact our athlete support rep Richard Burgunder, and he will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Step Strong!

Trevor Folgering
The Canada StairClimbing Association

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Regaining Your Balance Through StairClimbing

Stairclimbing is a great tool to improve balance, core strength and stability through the major joints and muscles of the body.

This blog will explore some of the concepts in regards to improving balance through a regular stairclimbing routine.

In the body having proper balance is determined by two factors:

1) The stability of the joints
2) The strength and stability of the core musculature (abdominals, lower back)

Many people have varying amounts of balance difficulties. By incorporating stairclimbing into their daily activities, an improvement of balance will be considerable.

To really understand how stairclimbing can help improve balance we must take a look at the center of the body, the hips, abdominal muscles and lower back muscles. This area is primarily responsible for keeping the body in an upright position.

The hips act as a stabilizer for the whole entire body. If the hips are misaligned then the body becomes imbalanced and this is where we see major balance issues come into play.

For example the hips can either be rotated slightly forward, backward or rotated to the left or ride side. The pictures below show examples of both:

Stairclimbing is a great tool to improve imbalances in the hip. The act of climbing stairs two at a time will help in re-align the hips back to a neutral position. The participant must make sure to really focus on keeping the hips as straight as possible and climbing with the "heel strike" technique. This will help the participant in addressing the muscular imbalances around the hip joint which will help in re-aligning the hip to neutral position. Once the hip is in a neutral position then there will be a marked improvement in balance.

Stability in the Joints

The stability of the joint really refers to the amount of supporting muscle tissue around the joint. If muscle development is insufficient around the joint, the joint will become instable leading to balance issues.

Stairclimbing is a great tool to increase the amount of lean muscle in the quadriceps, hamstrings, calves and glutes (Butt muscle)

Once there is sufficient muscle around these joints, the joints become more stable and improved balance will follow.

To improve your balance join one of our meet-up groups in you city!

Trevor Folgering
The Canada StairClimbing Association

Friday, January 14, 2011

January 15th Newsletter!

Check out Our January Newsletter for great information on stairclimbing, fitness, health, nutrition and all relevant information for stairclimbers all over the world!

Don't forget to sign up for our event races and great meetup groups in your area!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Achieve Fitness Success in 2011 Part 5

Our latest installment goes over using the correct fitness "syntax" to achieve extraordinary results!

For those of you reading this blog and do not know what the word "syntax" means I invite you to read our previous blog post explaining the concept

Using The Correct Syntax

So you have embarked on a fitness quest to lose weight and lots of it. Great! Here is how you should work your fitness syntax to get the maximum results.

Syntax = The correct order to produce amazing results. You must do the right things at the right time in the right place, to unlock the fitness weight loss fault.

Step #1

Workout first thing in the morning. Their are a number of reasons why working out in the morning can help you achieve your fitness goals. By engaging in a workout in the morning you will actually increase your overall metabolism by 10 percent and burn more calories throughout the day!

Now of course if you cannot find the extra energy to workout in the morning and you have to workout in the evening, that is great to! The secret to having a maximum workout in the evening hours is to decrease any type of carbohydrate consumption 2 hours before the workout, and then right after the workout to have simple carbohydrates and a protein shake to get a dramatic spike in your blood sugar levels to help push needed fuel and amino acids into the muscle for recovery. Then you must only eat fibrous carbohydrates and protein after. (Ex: Chicken Salad.)

Step #2

Use Food as Fuel and not for Taste - Society has conditioned us over many years to enjoy food for taste and the emotional experience of eating. Of course the Hamburger and Fries tastes good and it gives you that "feel good" feeling, however the consequences for eating this way are severe and include heart attacks, strokes, diabetes and other illnesses.

In your fitness syntax you must eat the right foods to fuel your body, not for enjoyment. You must be able to switch your mindset to focus on food as the building blocks for having an amazing body. If you switch your mindset and use food as fuel and not for emotional enjoyment, then weight loss, specifically fat loss becomes that much easier. (Of course healthy things, taste good too!)

Step #3

Workout Smarter, Not Harder -The secret to real fitness success is doing the right things at the right time. The other piece of the puzzle is getting the most bank for the buck. To really maximize your fitness results you must be able to train smart, not hard. It boils down to how efficiently do you maximize your time during a workout session. If you are new I understand that it is tough to know how to train smart.

That is why we at the Canada StairClimbing Association offer stairclimbing programs that in only 30-45 minutes will burn twice the amount of calories then just regular working out. Stairclimbing will dramatically increase the rate at which the body will burn fat. It is a proven statistic. Learn more about our meetup groups here

So one of the correct syntaxes that you should use to lose immense amount of body fat would be:

Train in the morning+Use food as fuel+ incorporate stairclimbing into your routine.

Use this combination and there is no stopping you from achieving your fitness goals in 2011!

Step Strong!

Trevor Folgering
The Canada StairClimbing Association

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Achieve Fitness Success in 2011 Part 4

Hi welcome back!

In part four of Achieving Fitness Success we take a look at developing the right "combination" for fitness success.

Syntax - Unlocking the Fitness Combination

There are many people in 2011 that will begin a fitness program. Maybe your one of them. If you are keep on rocking it! We support you fully!

However the rate of someone not achieving fitness success is somewhere around the 90 percent mark. In other worlds 90 percent of the people who start a fitness resolution will break that resolution by Jan 15th. We do not want that to happen to you!

It really boils down to the syntax of fitness. Now what do I mean? Syntax can be described as simply arrangements of words to form a sentence.

For example take a look at this sentence:

The dog bit Johnny!

What would happen if we re-arranged the syntax of the sentence? Lets take a look:

Johnny bit the dog!

Same words right? I didn't add or subtract anything, yet just by re-arranging the words you get a different meaning and a different outcome. (especially if your Johnny!)

The same holds true for fitness. You could have all the tools for achieving fitness success, but if they are in the wrong order....TROUBLE! You could also be using the tools incorrectly, even if it is in the right place. (The gym)

In other words you must be doing the right things, in the right way, in the right place.

You have to get the correct syntax or combination if you will to unlock your fitness potential.

The Correct Syntax

Lets take a look at three variables that hold people back in fitness achievement:

1) Training
2) Nutrition
3) Recovery

All three of these done in the right way, in the right time, at the right place will help you unlock your fitness potential.

You must have the perform the correct exercises, done specifically at certain places throughout the week, and you also must have the correct nutritional strategy and preform this consistently throughout the weeks to really unlock the fitness combination.

In the next chapter of achieving fitness success I am going to in detail write out what you need to do in order to see real tangible results in 2011!

For now know that one of the "secrets" to this formula is stairclimbing. We have stairclimbing groups located in Toronto and Regina. Come on out to our meet-up groups, meet great people and start achieving your fitness goals for 2011!

Sign up here

Step Strong!

Trevor Folgering
The Canada StairClimbing Association

Sunday, January 2, 2011

The Health Benefits of StairClimbing!

Its 2011 and stairclimbing is the best way to become fit! Do you not believe me?

Well here is some proof. You know what they say the proof is in the pudding!

Intermittent Stair Climbing Improves Fitness

In a recent study, British researchers confirmed that some exercise is better than nothing.

Researchers found that for sedentary people, even a few minutes of daily stair climbing – a vigorous but easily accessible form of exercise – can improve cardiovascular health.

Previous studies have shown that accumulating short bouts of exercise can make a difference; this one shows just how short those bouts can be.

Twenty-two sedentary college-aged women walked up 199 steps – more than you’re likely to find at home, but doable in a high-rise – in 2.25 minutes, a “brisk but comfortable” pace which shot their heart rates up to 90 percent of their predicted maximum.

They progressed from one ascent per day during the first week to six ascents per day, for a total of 13.5 minutes over the course of a day, during the sixth and seventh weeks.

By the end of this modest exercise program, the women were measurably more fit: Heart rate, oxygen uptake and blood lactate levels during climbing were reduced, and their HDL (”good”) cholesterol levels had increased.

Source: Preventive Medicine, 2000; 30, 4, 277-281

There is a way to get fitter faster!

Want to lower lousy LDL cholesterol and raise heart-lung health faster! Just say, “I’ll take the stairs.” And do it.

If you do two minutes of stair climbing — that’s a couple of flights — five or six times a day, in eight short weeks you can:

1.)Increase your heart-lung fitness by almost 20 percent, upping your odds of a longer better life.

2.)Reduce bad LDL cholesterol by 8 percent, and raise good HDL cholesterol by about that much, shrinking your risk of a heart attack, stroke, erectile dysfunction and wrinkles (all are increased by LDL).

3.)And do it all without spending a dime on a gym membership.

Stairclimbing is so effective because it forces your body to work against gravity, which among other things, firms your glutes — those jelly-butt muscles.

The fitness gains from doing 11 minutes of daily stair work for eight weeks rival those of walking 36 minutes a day for six months.

(Dr. Oz and Dr. Roizen report, famous cardiologists, often appearing on the Oprah Show)

Source: Las Vegas Review-Journal, May 2008

There you have it! Amazing evidence that stairclimbing is an amazing tool for fitness in 2011!

So join our stairclimbing meet up groups in Toronto and Regina!

"Step" Into the new year healthier!

Step Strong!

Trevor Folgering
The Canada StairClimbing Association