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Walking as a fitness activity is growing popular among people of all age groups. Low risk and easy to start, walking has proved its health benefits in numerous studies. As per studies, people who walk 30 minutes a day have a significantly lower risk of premature death than those who rarely exercise.

A regular walking program can help:

• Lower blood cholesterol

• Decrease blood pressure

• Boost up cardiovascular endurance

• Strengthen bones 

• Burn calories and keep weight down

An exercise like walking is one of the simplest things to start. All you need are comfortable clothes and a pair of shoes designed for walking. 

Before you start off, begin with brief warm-up session and a few simple stretches to loosen up any tension that you may have built up. Because walking primarily works the major muscles of the legs, stretch your back, shoulders and arms to get the blood flowing to the muscles in all parts of the body. This will make your walk more effective and more enjoyable too. 

 

 

For Beginners

If you are a first-timer or are starting to walk after a long break, keep in mind the following:

1. Walk short distances and gradually increase your distance. Begin with a five-minute stroll the first day, adding a few minutes daily.

2. Walk at a comfortable pace without worrying about the speed. Focus on good posture, keeping your head lifted and shoulders relaxed.

3. Swing your arms naturally, and breathe deeply. If you can’t catch your breath, slow down your pace. Avoid hills in the first few weeks of your walking schedule.

4. Make sure you can talk while walking. If you can’t, you are walking too fast.

 

Get Going!

When it comes to walking, there is no best schedule. There are numerous options that you can try. The main aim is to keep walking regularly. Once you reach a point where you can walk a few miles with relative ease, start to vary the intensity. Try walking uphill. This helps in increasing cardiovascular endurance in addition to toning the legs. Gradually lengthen your stride and increase your speed. To prevent sore muscles, include a few minutes relaxing stretches after each workout. Energize your workout by listening to lively music. Although there are no hard and fast rules for walking, a minimum of 20 minutes a day is recommended. If you cannot walk for 20 minutes at a stretch, you can take two 10-minute walks each day or even hour-long walks two to three times a week. 

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Before you begin exercising, you need to consider a few things that every safe and effective exercise program should have.

 

 

Exercise Essentials:

 

1. A complete exercise program must have a combination of aerobics, muscular strength and endurance conditioning and flexibility exercise. Aerobics are great for the cardiovascular system and help a lot in weight management. Muscular conditioning improves strength and posture and reduces the risk of lower back injury besides being extremely beneficial for weight management program. Flexibility exercise maintains joint range of motion and reduces the risk of injury and muscle soreness.

2. Simple exercises like walking, jogging, skipping, dancing, etc. are also excellent ways to manage weight and stay fit. All these are actually weight-bearing aerobic exercises. Aerobics includes anything that uses large muscle groups in a continuous and rhythmic manner for sustained time period. Activities like bicycling, stationary cycling, swimming and rowing, etc. are non-weight-bearing aerobic exercises that can also be implemented in your exercise program.

3. Exercise at a comfortable pace. Intensity is a very important aspect of an exercise program. Measure your heart rate when you stop exercising by taking your pulse count. Count your heartbeat for 10 seconds and multiply it by six; this converts it to one-minute heart rate. Ideal exercise heart rate should be between 55 percent and 80 percent of an estimated maximum heart rate (220 minus your age).

4. How often and how long your exercise is also very essential to consider.For general health maintenance, 3-4 days of activity is good enough. If you want to lose weight, exercise for more than four days a week while taking an off once a week. It is recommended to work up to 20 or more minutes per session for general health maintenance while up to 45 minutes for weight-loss management.

5. Include strength training for every major muscle group including the muscles of the arms, chest, back, stomach, hips and legs. Try calisthenics, free weights or machines, whatever suits you the best. Start with a weight that you can handle comfortably and keep it for eight repetitions. Gradually increase up to 12 repetitions.

6. Stretching is often ignored by many; however, this should be an important part of your exercise program. Proper stretching involves holding a mild stretch of 10 to 30 seconds while breathing normally. Always warm up before you stretch. Include stretching for all major muscle groups.

At Metropolis Fitness, our professionals ensure to take care of all the exercise essentials so that you can reap maximum results.

 

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According to a research report posted in ‘The World Journal of Biological Psychiatry’, the human brain benefits a lot from physical activity at each age. There is a region in the brain called hippo-campus that is involved in memory forming, organizing and storing. When we indulge in physical activity, the regions in hippo-campus that are important for learning and memory are triggered and as a result our memory power is boosted and the brain is developed more.

 

 

There have also been several previous researches that indicate and prove that walking and exercises boost brain health. Among older adults, higher levels of physical activity are shown to result in more gray-matter volume. In fact, physical activity has been proven to have tremendous positive effects on people of all ages. Researchers from the Central Institute of Mental Health, Mannheim, Germany, and the University of Heidelberg in Heidelberg, Germany determined the effects of exercise on ninety-five participants aged 19 to 82 years.

Investigators analyzed the activity levels and evaluated MRI images of the brain, especially the gray- and white-matter volumes and densities. The analysis clearly showed that habitual physical activity resulted in increased volume and density of both gray and white matter in important brain regions among participants of all ages.

Physical activity, be it walking, running, swimming, cardio, Pilates, yoga, dance, sports, or any other indulgence not only brings positive changes in the body but also the brain. The benefits of exercises and physical activities are huge and long-lasting, especially in terms of greater gray-matter volume in the hippo-campus. In addition, physical activities also affect some neuro-degenerative diseases and psychological disorders.

If you want to have a bunch of beneficial effects for your cognitive health, physical activity is a must. Encourage your children, friends, family and everyone around you to practice some sort of physical activity and spread good health and cheer among all like the Metropolis Fitness Club.

 

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Intake of purin-rich food can lead to increased amount of uric acid in the blood. High uric acid has become a major concern for many people. One of the most prominent effects of uric acid is gout, a kind of arthritis. High uric acid can also lead to kidney stones, diabetes and other diseases. By making simple dietary changes, one can easily control the level of uric acid and lead a healthy life. Here are a few nutrition tips that you must consider if you want to regulate uric acid in your body.

1. Increase intake of high-fibre foods: Including high-fibre foods like whole grains, oats, spinach, broccoli, etc. can help to lower uric acid levels in your blood. Dietary fibre absorbs uric acid in the bloodstream and eliminates it through kidneys.

2. Cold-pressed oils: Instead of consuming butter or vegetable oils, use cold-presses olive oil in cooking. Rancid fats in oils that are subjected to heat destroy vitamin E in the body, thus increasing the amount of uric acid. Olive oil controls production of uric acid.

 

 

3. Regular intake of vitamin C: You can also reduce uric acid by taking 500 mg of vitamin C regularly for a period of 1-2 months.

4. Avoid bakery products: Products made with white flour like cakes, pastries, cookies, etc. when taken regularly are harmful for any age group. Besides bakery products contain high amount of sugar and are rich in saturated and Trans fats.

5. Consume celery: Celery seed extract is a proven remedy for gout and uric acid problems. Celery is rich in antioxidants and is mildly diuretic. Besides controlling uric acid, it also treats sleeplessness, anxiety and nervous breakdown.

6. Antioxidant-rich foods: Foods that are high in antioxidants like fruits, vegetables such as bell peppers, tomatoes, blueberries, broccoli, grapes, etc. prevent free radical molecules from attacking organs and tissues, thereby lowering the amount of uric acid.

7. Apple cider vinegar: Apple cider vinegar changes the pH value of blood and helps to alleviate high uric acid. Best to be consumed raw, un-distilled and unpasteurized.

8. Cherries: Cherries neutralize uric acid and eliminate it as a waste from the body.

Avoid consumption of alcohol, limit meat, poultry and fish and drink plenty of fluids. These simple yet effective tips go a long way in restoring good health.

 

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High-intensity Interval training workouts are known to burn more calories over a short period of time as compared with steady-state cardio (doing the same thing for the whole workout time) in which you lose some pounds after a long time. A barrage of recent studies have also proven that high-intensity interval training increases muscular and cardiovascular strength, triggers fat loss and improves the overall health of a person.

 

 

So how can you get the most out of your interval training program? Although there is no single hard-and-fast rule about interval training as different lengths of work and recovery are all good and bring about different benefits, there are a few tips that you can follow to make your sessions all the more beneficial for you.

One of the favourites at Metropolis Fitness is cardio blaster. In this, you can burn a lot of calories in a short time period. Begin by warming up yourself for 15 minutes and then either run, bike, or row for 3 minutes at 90—95% of your maximum heart rate. Relax for 3 minutes and repeat the 3on/3 off pattern for 3-4 times. Finish by taking a cool down time of 10 minutes. You will feel great after this workout.

Speedplay is another great workout plan for toning the legs, glutes and the core. Warm up for 15 minutes; add a few 20-second bursts towards the end to prepare for the actual workout. Run, bike or row for 30 seconds with all your effort. Take a 3-minute recovery time and repeat the pattern for 5-6 times. In the end, cool down for 10 minutes. Speedplay is an excellent workout to increase the muscle power.

You can also try cardio-sprint pyramid if you want a fast and fun workout. Start by warming yourself up for 15 minutes by adding a 20-second burst for actual workout. Run, bike, row at a rate of perceived exertion (for 30 seconds) followed by a recovery of 30 seconds. In the 2nd rep, increase the time to 1 minute; 3rd rep for 2 minutes, 4th rep for 4 minutes, 5th rep for 2 minutes, 6th rep for 1 minute, 7th rep for 30 seconds while keeping the time for workout and recovery same in all the reps. Finish with a 10-minute cool down.

To add more to your intensity training routine, indulge in group exercise training program to increase your motivation level.

 

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