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Six-Pack Attack – Workout and Sleep

high intensity interval trainingIn the second article on getting a six-pack, we will look at the effects of your workout and sleep patterns. How high you can get your metabolism to function and the amount of sleep you get each night will drastically affect the amount of fat you can burn from your body.Doing cardio is the number one activity people think of in order to burn fat. Cardio does a good job but the level of intensity needs to be cranked up in order to effectively burn even more. Too much cardio is not really all that good because your body needs recovery time so when you do workout, do it effectively with the time you have. That means utilizing high intensity interval training (HIIT) and weight training.

HIIT involves doing a short burst of 90 – 95% effort exercise for 30 – 60 seconds followed by 1-2 minutes of around 40% effort to bring your heart rate back down. You repeat the two over and over again for a total workout time of 10 – 15 minutes. You intense section should be difficult to finish and can be short if you are not used to it yet. You will find that you improve quite quickly as you continue doing it each week. Your downtime should involve you concentrating on relaxing and controlled breathing. You can use sprinting, an elliptical trainer, stair-climber or any other form of exercise that can be done at two different speeds. As always, do a proper warm up and cool down.

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Six-Pack Attack – Nutrition

6-packYou see lots of claims from different companies selling the newest miracle pill or “special” program to get you in shape with a “ripped” set of abs. Is there a pill that will actually do that with no exercise? Not likely if you want lasting results. There really is no mystery to how to do it. The basics are pretty well known and what most people need is motivation more than anything. These are the key areas we found are consistently being used by most people.
Metabolism
What you eat and how you design your exercise routine will really help to increase your metabolism so you can burn more fat in a shorter period of time. Your diet needs to be consistent and include healthy foods to limit the calories you intake from fast and processed foods. This is critical regardless if you are an athletes or regular, average individual just looking to lose some belly fat.

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Dairy Products – The Basics

Dairy Products 1You don’t see a lot of emphasis on dairy products from bodybuilders and fitness enthusiasts. It appears that there is a general feeling that they are counterproductive to the athletes’ ultimate goal in their sport. Dairy products can supply many essential minerals and much needed protein and carbohydrates to a balanced nutrition plan.Dairy products include milk and products derived from it. The list includes: butter, cheese, cottage cheese, cream, ice cream and yogurt.Milk and its products are a valuable source of protein, vitamins and essential minerals like calcium that are needed in an athlete’s diet. Milk contains about 20% whey and 80% casein protein. Whey protein is the most widely used protein supplement in the fitness industry. The only protein that is considered better is whole egg protein. Whey digest quite quickly whereas casein is slow and has the added benefit of being able to release protein into muscle gradually so it is a good source to use before going to bed. Having both proteins present in one product gives the benefit of both worlds.

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Injuries in Youth Sports

InjuriesInjuries in to youth athletes can be catastrophic to the future of a child’s career or longevity in in playing sports. The statistics show the telling truth about how often injuries occur and the severity of them in some cases.

  • Sports related deaths of young athletes: 120 deaths 2008-2009; 49 in 2010; 39 in 2011
  • Emergency room visits for sports related injuries: 8,000 children with those 15-17 being the highest age group.
  • Rates of sports injury visits to ERs were highest in remote rural settings.
  • High school athlete sports injuries: 2 million injuries with 30 000 requiring hospitalization and 500 000 needing a visit to a doctor every year.

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Hydration – Flavored Water and Coconut Water

Hydration for athletes is important to avoid a drop in performance and recovery time. The normal sources of fluids are water, sports drinks and energy drinks. There are two less commonly written about sources – flavored and coconut water.

HydrationFlavored Water

There are two different variations to the name of the product being sold: flavored water and vitamin water. They are different products in most cases but have some similarities. Contrary to what the name implies, they do not contain only vitamins or flavoring in water. The ingredient list on a bottle of fitness water I looked at says this:

“Water, sucrose from corn syrup, natural lemon flavor with other natural flavors, citric acid, sodium citrate, potassium citrate, sucralose, vitamin C (ascorbic acid), vitamin E acetate, niacinamide (vitamin B3), calcium disodium EDTA (protects freshness), calcium pantothenate (vitamin B5) pyridoxine hydrochloride (vitamin B6),acesulfame potassium, vitamin B12”

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Iron Supplement – Do Athletes Need Them?

An iron supplement is prescribed to help those with anemia (an iron deficiency). Athletes require a healthy diet to train and perform well. Iron is critical for the transportation of oxygen in the blood so does this mean that athletes need to take an iron supplement?

Iron SupplementIron is an essential mineral (body requires it for normal operation) and is used in hemoglobin to carry oxygen. About 30% of the iron in your body is stored to replace the iron you may lose over time. A lack of iron will lead to headaches, irritability and fatigue because less oxygen is making it to vital areas of your body.

Iron deficiency can be caused by:

– the normal menstrual cycle in women

– very common in youth due to a rapid growth phase they will undergo as they develop through puberty

– some athletes known to be at risk are endurance athletes like runners who may lose iron in their sweat

– tea and coffee drinkers will absorb less iron from their foods

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