How to Build Your Own Workout Routine

How to Build Your Own Workout Routine

Many people want to develop their own workout routines so that they can get in the habit of exercising. While you could hire a personal trainer to create a workout routine for you, you can also create one by yourself. You should consider these tips so to help you build your own workout routine.

workout routine

How to Build Your Own Workout Routine

workout routine

Set Goals

 

Before you do anything else, you should figure out why you want to set up a workout routine. Do you want to lose some pounds? How about improve your health? Whatever the reason may be, you should set a goal for you to reach that will encourage you to workout.

For example, if you want to build muscle then you should consider adding weight training to your routine. Your routine will depend on what you want to accomplish, so make sure to set specific goals. They will help to motivate you and help you reach specific accomplishments through working out. 

Do Some Research

 

You want to research different workouts to see which you should perform. You may want to lose weight or to put on a bit of muscle. Based on what you want to do, you should research which workouts will help you to work towards that goal. For example, if you want to build up muscle, then you may want to bench press during your workout.

As you do research, you can see which exercises will help you to accomplish your goals. Make sure that you get a good variety in there so that you can exercise each body part and work towards a healthier lifestyle.

Start Small

 

Whenever you begin exercising, you want to start with smaller workouts. For example, you may want to run three miles a day, but you might want to start by walking a mile and a half. Continue to build upon it and get to the point where you can workout the amount that you want.

If you try to reach the goal immediately, then you will wear down your body and cause yourself to lose motivation. It’s better to start with smaller sets and reps and to work your way up to more. As you build it up over time, your body will become used to working out and will adjust to it.

Workout Your Entire Body

 

When it comes to working out, you need to make sure that you workout every body part. You don’t want to just lift weights all day. This will cause you to have poor cardio and suffer in other areas. Instead, you want to find a good balance with your workouts so that you can improve your health overall.

This includes incorporating workouts for your legs, arms, lungs, core and other areas. You don’t have to do all the workouts in one day, but you should find a good balance. Maybe you will focus on your cardio one day then do core exercises the next. Do whatever will help you out the most and improve your health.

Improve Your Eating

 

As you workout, you should also improve your eating habits. If you eat junk food or fast food all day, then you won’t have the energy to workout. You should also adjust your diet to the type of workouts that you do. If you want to build muscle, increase your protein intake. If you want to lose weight, cut out carbs and sugars.

You can maintain correct eating proportions and habits by establishing meals plans. These meal plans will allow you to plan out your eating throughout the day so that you can control your calories while eating the necessary foods to maintain your energy.

Designing a Workout Is

Our Personal Trainers Can Help.

In Conclusion...

While you may want to workout, you should follow these tips to help you stay on track and to continue working out. Many people lose motivation quickly, so keep your goals in mind and do your best so that you will keep working out. As you work hard to follow your routine and continue with a consistent training session, you can reach your goals.

Choose your membership.

Our most popular plans at Bethany Athletic Club are our family memberships.

We also offer Couple’s and Family Memberships! Please call us for more details.

Standard Individual Membership

$ 89 Month. $300 Enrollment
  • Full Access to Club
  • $10 for Guest Passes
  • $20 for Small Group Training

Premium Indvidual Membership

$ 139
99
Month. $300 Enrollment
  • Full Access to Club
  • 4 Free Guest Passes
  • 10% off Personal Training & Swimming Packages
  • Free Small Group Training
Best Deal

The Health Benefits of Swimming

Discover the Health Benefits of Swimming

Bethany Athletic Club has state-of-the-art swimming pools and equipment. 

what are the benefits of swimming?

 

Swimming is an amazing kind of sport. It brings you fun, joy and pleasurable times while spending time with your friends and family. This sport is a very popular activity because it’s suitable for almost anyone and the benefits of swimming are easily accessible for all fitness levels. For some people, due to various health issues and age, it is the only physical exercise that is permitted for them.

There are also many health benefits of swimming. It can even replace the gym for you. When you swim, your body moves rapidly, and it also positively impacts your mind. Let’s see what the most important healing effects are.

The Positive Effects of Swimming on Your Cardiovascular System

If you suffer from high blood pressure, hypertension, tachycardia, or other heart disease and conditions, swimming is . great way to workout and improve your symptoms. Under supervision of a medical professional, try swimming as often as you can. Many people with heart conditions see positive results after a month or two with a regular swimming exercise regimen.

benefits of swimming, woman swimming
benefits of swimming, man swimming

Healing Back & Joint Pain

There’s any number of reasons why your back is causing you to experience back pain. Speak with a medical professional to rule out anything serious, but swimming could be the answer to your problems.

When you swim, your muscular system as well as your skeletal system is stretched and realigned. This can provide relief on your entire skeletal structure, alleviating pain from a pinched nerve or other painful conditions.

Swimming Is Great for Stress Relief

Swimming has an added benefit that you may not know about: stress relief. Numerous studies have shown that swimming stimulates the brain’s release of neurochemicals that relieve stress like serotonin. 

Swimming also produces ANP, a stress reducing hormone that also helps manage the brain’s response to stress and anxiety. On the physiological level, swimming releases endorphins- those naturally-occurring, feel-good compounds. It also serves to mop up excess fight or flight hormones, serving to convert stressy angsty into muscle relaxation. Swimming can also induce a process called “hippocampal neurogenesis,” which is the growth of new brain cells in the part of the brain that atrophies under chronic stress.

Swimming and Weight Loss

When it comes to the activities that you should be doing to lose weight, it’s likely that swimming isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. However, swimming is one of the best activities that you can do to simultaneously tone and slim your body.

Like any form of cardiovascular exercise, swimming burns calories, helping you to lose weight. Unlike other types of cardio, moving through the water creates extra resistance, forcing you to use your muscles more.


Another great part of the benefits of swimming? It’ doesn’t take long to reap the benefits 

The hidden benefits of swimming

 

 

 

Swimming Makes You Smarter

Regular exercise regimens, like a consistent swimming routine, improves your memory function and cognitive skills. This isn’t just for kids- it’s beneficial for adults as we age, too! Regular exercise works to reduce inflammation as well as insulin resistance in the brain, fostering growth of new brain cells. Swimming can also improve your mood and reduce anxiety/stress, which helps you think more efficiently.

Swimming Burns More Calories Than Jogging

When comparing swimming to jogging, it becomes quickly apparent which is a more efficient workout! You can burn more calories swimming laps than you can running them. One hour of vigorous swimming can burn as much as 715 calories; running the same amount of time only burns 606 calories.

 

Swimming Slows Down Aging

Let the pool become your fountain of youth! A regular swimming routine can delay the effects of aging by reducing blood pressure, increasing muscle mass, improving oxygen & blood flow to the brain, and improving overall cardiovascular health.

 

 

 Swimming is Great for Asthma

Swimming is great for folks with asthma. People with asthma may experience issues when working out because the loss of heat and moisture in the lungs can cause bronchial tubes to contract. Swimming is great for asthma sufferers because the moisture from the water replaces the moisture lost during vigorous breathing.

Choose your membership.

Our most popular plans at Bethany Athletic Club are our family memberships.

We also offer couple’s and Individual Memberships! Please call us for more details.

Standard Family Membership

$ 169
99
Month. $400 Enrollment
  • Full Access to Club
  • $10 for Guest Passes
  • $10 for 3 Hours of Childcare
  • $20 for Small Group Training

Premium Family Membership

$ 219
99
Month. $400 Enrollment
  • Full Access to Club
  • 4 Free Guest Passes
  • FREE Childcare at Kid Central
  • 10% off Personal Training & Swimming Packages
  • And More!
Best Deal

The 4 Most Important Types of Exercise

The 4 Most Important Types of Exercise

Few people have a perfect workout routine. But even those who seem to be incredibly fit might not know that there are four essential types of exercises. Of course, you can get fairly fit without hitting all four types of exercise. But if you want great fitness, be sure to touch on each one.

 

The four major types of exercise are aerobic, stretching, strength, and balance. Covering each of these is important not only for optimal fitness, but also optimal aging. Correct training can prevent falls and injury as we age. Injury can happen to the best and healthiest of us over weekend sports, too. So don’t wait too long to start on a fully developed training program.

5 Most Important Types of Exercise

Aerobic

Aerobic exercise tends to use a large muscle group like the legs. It’s most often high-intensity, and it’s great for lowering blood pressure. You want to get your heart rate up to an optimal level for your training goals during aerobic activities. The optimal rate might be higher or lower depending on what you are trying to do.

 

Some popular aerobic activities are running, swimming, biking, hiking, and Zumba. These high-intensity workouts will develop some strength. But you still want to include other types of exercise to round out your fitness.

 

You’ve probably heard that runners should stretch well, for example. What you might not know is that strength training and flexibility exercises are not only important for the well-being of runners, they can actually prevent falls and improve running times.

 

Optimally, you will not just do static stretches if you tend to workout aerobically. Do some stretching exercises after a moderate-intensity warm-up, then do your aerobic exercise.

Strength Training

Strength training is popular with men. But did you know that women can benefit from strength training too? They can use their strength training to develop muscle mass, which improves athletic performance and overall fitness in women.

 

It’s noted by many trainers that women who strength train tend to have a leaner physique. Strength training doesn’t have to mean weights or high intensity. It can be a moderate activity using resistance training as well. Of course, feel free to ramp it up if it suits you!

 

Any physical activity will usually improve strength for women but try different types of workouts for great results. You’ll keep from getting bored if you alternate between plyos, plates, dumbbells, kettlebells, and more.

Flexibility Exercises

Flexibility exercises are lower in intensity most of the time. But they are still important for fitness. In fact, many people say that the more intense you want to work out, the more flexible you should become in order to prevent injury.

 

Flexibility exercises are very important if you want to improve your range of motion. A lot of people don’t take up flexibility exercises until they have injured themselves and find themselves in physical therapy, but you can always take the initiative to improve your range of motion while healthy!

 

Flexibility is its own achievement. Try yoga, ballet, or Barre classes if you want to make progress in this area.

Balance

We can all improve our balance. To improve your balance, try specific exercises or yoga. Great balance takes surprisingly strong muscles, so don’t be surprised if you become leaner and stronger as you seek to improve in this area!

 

Balance is also essential for athletes. Athletes practice balancing in all kinds of situations, from 180-degree turns to landings from sky-high jumps.

 

Don’t be afraid to spend some time on this one. Balance is an important factor of healthy aging, so you’ll get every bit of benefit from the work you put in.

In conclusion...

Above all, be safe when you’re exercising. Don’t push it too hard unless you have a trainer or physical therapist present. You can always get help going harder when someone is there.

 

You’ll be able to really put some time into the weekend league if you stick with a balanced workout routine that touches each of these four bases. The more balanced, flexible, and strong you are, the harder you can play.

 

Of course, everyone wants to be an aerobic champion. Just remember that the more you can play and the safer your body is, the more you can push your aerobic limits.

 

Few activities are all-encompassing of these four types of exercise. Try to supplement your favorite workout with a day or two a week of another type that will benefit you. Many runners who run every day will do two days a week of strength training, for example.

 

If you need help picking out a few great activities to keep your health in balance, try meeting with one of our trainers. They can work with you on finding a sport or class you love and supplementing with weights or personal training to keep you in tip-top shape.

Choose your membership.

Our most popular plans at Bethany Athletic Club are our family memberships.

We also offer Couple’s and Family Memberships! Please call us for more details.

Standard Individual Membership

$ 89 Month. $300 Enrollment
  • Full Access to Club
  • $10 for Guest Passes
  • $20 for Small Group Training

Premium Indvidual Membership

$ 139
99
Month. $300 Enrollment
  • Full Access to Club
  • 4 Free Guest Passes
  • 10% off Personal Training & Swimming Packages
  • Free Small Group Training
Best Deal

What Counts As Aerobic Exercise?

What Counts As Aerobic Exercise?

Imagine you wake up one morning and decide it’s a brand new day for a brand new you. Now that the year and decade of 2020 is already underway, the desire to transform your body and uplift your wellness takes front and center. Bethany Athletic Club understands the supreme nature of working on your body as a whole unit, from top to bottom, and from the inside out. 

 

As a state of the art, multi-purpose premier health club, Bethany Athletic Club in Portland, Oregon is on the forefront of offering the most signature classes, topnotch personal training, Pilates in an elegant environment, and other wellness-oriented amenities that keep the city abuzz with living well and increasing lifespans.

 

Thinking back to how trends got started and what’s helping people with their overall fitness moving forward, this community-centered facility prides itself on memberships that forge into helping the entire family. One such trend focuses on the concept of ‘aerobic training.’ 

 

The foundation of aerobic training roots into the notion that any physical exercise performed in the presence of oxygen from a low to high intensity for long periods of time needs to be supported by aerobic metabolism. Long bouts of cardiovascular workouts where the heart has to pump continuously to deliver blood and oxygen to the muscles in order to perform efficiently is deemed aerobic exercise. 

 

But what activities actually count as aerobic exercise and what are the health benefits, and why do it? Bethany Athletic Club outlines the ways in which quality aerobic exercise can reduce the risk of diseases, increase weight loss, and decrease high blood pressure. It all boils down to the duration you spend with your chosen activity. 

5 Different Types of Aerobic Exercise

There are popular and mainstream types of exercise that have been around for centuries. As tried and true activities of enjoyment and intensity, either for sport or a workout the entire family can participate in, aerobic exercise has to be performed for 30 minutes or longer in order to reap the rewards. 

 

As with any low or high intensity program, it’s important to check with your primary physician prior to getting started or continuing on with the essential benefits of aerobic exercise. 


Here are 5 different types of intense exercise that can keep you on a path to a positive overall well-being:

 

  1. Walking–this is one of the most common methods of weight loss, increasing bone density, helping with Type-2 diabetes, and can be performed by anyone. As human beings have been designed to walk since birth, and in order to keep walking on the level of aerobic training, add a faster pace or hills, or longer distances. There’s no limit to how much a solid walking program can ensure lifelong health. The essentials are there; simply put one foot in front of the other, wear a quality and supportive pair of shoes, and go! Your bones, heart, and lungs will thank you.

     

  2. Swimming–being buoyant in the water is one of the most natural feelings. To make the activity more beneficial to weight loss, add swimming strokes that increase the heart rate (freestyle, backstroke, butterfly stroke) and perform each with a sense of interval-type training. Swim one lap as fast as you possibly can, then follow it with a 20 second rest period, and repeat. If you were to perform swimming at higher intensity levels, and include this sport in your regular aerobic exercise program, it will not only alleviate pressure on your joints, but will create a slim and trim body.

     

  3. Cycling–you don’t need to always be in the outdoors to reap the benefits of a good cycling program, as Bethany Athletic Club offers high intensity cycling classes, but you do need to show up and be prepared to work hard. This type of aerobic exercise can be fun, challenging, and monitored by instructors who are trained and dedicated to reach target heart rates for all participants in an effort to maintain weight loss as a goal. Cycling outdoors is also essential training, if you have proper equipment and you adhere to safety on the roads or trails. That being said, pedaling your way to fitness and good health is one of the more popular means of aerobic exercise.

     

  4. Running–whether performed on a treadmill or outdoors, running is the highest rated form of aerobic training that burns more calories and increases blood oxygen levels in a shorter period of time. You can run for 30 minutes, you can run for an hour. The goal is endless if you’re up to it, and you find it exciting. Proper running shoes are the key to any solid running program, as is a heart rate monitor. Both allow you the ability to go far, go fast, and maintain a sense of ‘staying in the zone’ to help with weight loss and a decrease in overall body fat. Running as an aerobic exercise will boost your metabolism and reduce your risk of the onset of disease. Indoor treadmills help when it’s raining outside or you want to keep track of every aspect of the running process (ie. target heart rate, continued intensity, and the incline/decline abilities of the machine).

  5. Aerobic classes–yes, these are still considered one of the best ways to let loose, have fun, and learn new steps in an environment with music, camaraderie, and an all-encompassing cardiovascular workout. Several classes offer the element of strength training incorporated into the hour, interval training to increase intensity, or power yoga. Group fitness classes at Bethany Athletic Club are unique, purposeful, and designed to benefit any client who is interested in something different and willing to train hard in a closely-monitored setting. Aerobic classes offer some of the highest levels of exercise and if part of your regular aerobic exercise program, will help you gain valuable health tools for life. 

 

Choose your membership.

Our most popular plans at Bethany Athletic Club are our family memberships.

We also offer Couple’s and Family Memberships! Please call us for more details.

Standard Individual Membership

$ 89 Month. $300 Enrollment
  • Full Access to Club
  • $10 for Guest Passes
  • $20 for Small Group Training

Premium Indvidual Membership

$ 139
99
Month. $300 Enrollment
  • Full Access to Club
  • 4 Free Guest Passes
  • 10% off Personal Training & Swimming Packages
  • Free Small Group Training
Best Deal

How to Get the Most Out of Your Yoga Practice

A good yoga class or session is more than just breathing and movement. It’s about finding balance, releasing negative energy, and focusing attention. In the fast-paced world we live in, sometimes those key concepts get away from us, and it can be challenging to get them back. Anyone looking at enhancing their yoga practice, whether you’re a novice or professional, can benefit from these tips to get the most out of each session.

Understanding the History

Educate yourself on the topic of yoga and the rich spiritual history behind it. Reading books about the practice and development of movements can help you connect to the flow on a deep inner level.

Reading about specific poses and alignments will also help you perfect poses, easing the transitions during the flow. Knowing the purpose of each movement can help you understand the importance and motivation behind it as well.

Set Clear Intentions and Goals

By setting a specific intention at the beginning of class, you’ll stay focused, and it gives you something to return to when you feel unbalanced during the session. Selecting an intention doesn’t have to be hard, it can be a single word such as “peace” or “relax” or a phrase such as “I am enough, I am grateful”. Focusing on your intention during each breath will allow you to feel the movements and focus on the moment instead of the end goal.

Breathe

Staying conscious of each breath will allow you to stay in the moment to focus on those intentions. Be sure to take mindful breaths, and if needed, count in and out on the inhale and exhale to help steady your mind and center yourself. Having this mindfulness during class will allow you to experience all the sensations of the movements, and leave you feeling grounded and aware.

Listen to Your Body

If a movement feels too strenuous, or something feels uncomfortable, it’s okay to back off or adjust to find comfort. When you feel as though you are pushing too hard or reaching too far into the stretch, it’s okay to drop into child pose then return to your breathing before jumping back in. Just remember, trust your body and your instinct.

Be Honest With the Teacher

Even in a large class setting, it’s important that your instructor be aware of any physical limitations you may have. Whether it’s an old knee injury, a recent surgery, or something else if your instructor knows they can better help you during each flow to find a more comfortable alignment or transition. Be honest if a movement hurts and ask for help when you need it.

Lose Expectations

Don’t come to your first session expecting to feel enlightenment or the answers to all your inner questions. It takes time to perfect the movements and inner balance so be patient.

Once your feet touch the mat, let the day before you go, and don’t worry about what the day will bring. Focus on what is happening now and how your body is feeling. Let the teacher be your guide and use your inner teacher to help connect with each breath and movement.

Come to Class Prepared

The last thing you want is your phone ringing during a challenging pose or needing a bathroom break as soon as you get started. Turn off your phone and put it away, or better yet, leave it in the car. Be sure to visit the restroom before you enter the classroom, too.

Be sure your clothes are comfortable and well fitted so you aren’t fidgeting or adjusting them during the practice. You want to be as free of distractions as possible so, take careful note when preparing for your session.

By ensuring this type of preparation you will also show respect toward your instructor who has taken the time to be there for you that day. It shows your level of commitment to yourself and how important the practice is.

Enjoy

Attending a yoga practice session should be as relaxed and stress-free as possible. Whether you’re about to sign up for your first lesson or are preparing to teach your hundredth class, it’s always good to reflect and remind yourself of some of these best practices. 

How to Stay Healthy This Winter

‘Tis the season for winter that can bring in cold blizzards, sniffling noses and seasonal gatherings that may distract you from your healthy routine. There are plenty of ways to stay healthy this winter and avoid bad habits with our list below.

Balance Your Wellness

A small misstep can throw you off balance this winter. You might be hibernating from the cold but may be neglecting your self care. Consider these suggestions when facing germs and challenges along the way.

  • Catch up on sleep
    Sometimes your body needs to restore energy and is signaling you with fatigue. Wind down during the season’s longer evenings before bed to prevent the common cold. Well-rested people are more likely to fight off infections.
  • Let off some steam
    If signs of winter depression or high levels of stress start to bog you down, steam rooms and saunas are great relievers. They reduce extra tension around the muscles and alleviate anxiety. It also detoxifies your body and skin.
  • Meditate
    Counter that winter melancholy with a healthy alternative such as mediation. Practice a steady routine of deep breathing whenever your stress levels start to rise.
  • Keep it social
    Especially around the holidays there are many community programs you can get involved with like festivals, tree lightings and parades. Connect with old friends and family for a game night.

Diet and Exercise

When the holidays are around the corner, you may be avoiding your exercise routines and healthy habits.

  • Plan your exercises
    Plan weekly by choosing your workout routines or physical activities to get your heart pumping. Keep yourself accountable with a workout schedule every day with a set time so you will stick with it.
  • Workout at home
    If the chilly weather is preventing you from going outdoors, stay motivated by seeking online workouts to find your favorite yoga, aerobic or strength training video.
  • Cook healthy
    Incorporating more nutrients from whole fruits and vegetables is the key to maintaining your waistline. With a colorful plate and spices in your recipes, you are on the right track. Add spices like onions, garlic, cilantro and ginger which make dishes more flavorful. Other immune-boosting spices are turmeric and cumin that target inflammation and heart disease.

Eat Nutritious Food

Who doesn’t want to binge on comfort food this time of year, but to stay healthy this winter don’t get carried away with unhealthy carbs and fats.

  • Reduce carbs
    Splurging on delicious treats every day can build your cravings by releasing higher serotonin levels. They convince you that you need these empty calories for nourishment. Pack your plate with healthier proteins in the morning and healthy snacks throughout the day to reduce cravings.
  • Healthy Fats
    You many want to start increasing your omega 3 fatty acids that are found in fish, nuts and seeds. These foods can reduce inflammation in joints and muscle stiffness.
  • Healthy fruits and veggies
    Stock up on more nutritious fruits and vegetables with this list: squash, leafy greens, carrots, oranges, berries, sweet potatoes, kiwis, grapefruit, apples and pineapple. And don’t forget your mighty mushrooms, such as white button or shiitake, that have medicinal qualities. They fight off illnesses and have natural antibiotics.
  • Consume fiber
    We usually neglect fiber intake during the holidays. However, apples, oats and nuts will reduce cholesterol levels and aid you in losing weight while protecting your digestive system. Adding more fiber into your diet also decreases inflammation and boosts your immunity.

Combat the Cold and Flu

This is the season where cold and flu symptoms can linger for days, so here are a few ways to stay healthy this winter.

  • Reduce germs
    An everyday task we take for granted but hand washing numerous times a day maintains a healthier you and protects your immune system from unwanted illness.
  • Cover your cough
    A proper way to prevent spreading germs is to cover your cold and flu symptoms by coughing and sneezing into your elbow.
  • Clean surfaces
    Another way to prevent the spread of viruses and bacteria is to clean surfaces that are touched often by disinfecting the areas. If someone is sick at work or school, dust or wipe keyboards and workspaces. Clean doorknobs, TV remotes and common area spaces at the house.

Here’s to a winter of good health!

7 Gym Bag Essentials for Swimming

If you’re a competitive swimmer, we’re sure you’re familiar with the fact that you have to bring lots of equipment to swim. Although to the average person it may appear that you don’t need much to swim, just some goggles and a swimsuit, professional swimmers know otherwise. The list can go on and on for items that you have to bring with you when you swim.

However, we understand that your gym bag can only hold so much. You don’t have unlimited room, which means that you only want to take what you are positive you need.

This is why we collected a list of the seven gym bag essentials and listed them for you below. These are only the necessities so you won’t be wasting any room in your gym bag.

7 Gym Bag Essentials for Swimming

The mesh bag

Although your gym bag will hold everything you need overall, your mesh bag, tucked inside your gym bag, will keep everything you’ll take to your lane. This is everything that you’ll use during your workout, including your swimmers snorkel, fins, and everything else you’ll be bringing to your lane.

Micro-fiber towel

Believe it or not, when you’re a swimmer, there are lots of options for something as simple as a towel. It can be difficult, with so many options, to know which one is the best to use. Micro-fiber towels, although they may not feel as nice a regular towel, will fit into your bag without taking up too much space and help you to dry off quickly. If you forget, we always have complimentary towels available poolside and in the locker room.

Logbook

Although this isn’t anything new, tracking and logging your swim practices can be incredibly helpful. Journaling your swim practices, although you may find it a little tedious and boring, can, in the long run, be extremely beneficial. Once you have it journaled, you can look back and see what you need to improve and what you’ve learned in your swim practices.

A snack

Even if you’re not hungry before going, you can be sure after a long swim practice, you’ll be grateful for a post-workout snack. Those long hours of swimming can have swimmers devouring huge bowls full of food. However, if you don’t want to wait it out until you reach home, you should bring that post-workout snack along. Even something simple that will keep you refueled until you arrive home.

Water bottle

You’d be surprised at just how many competitive swimmers forget water bottles. Swimmers sweat too, and although it may not be as apparent as when you go and workout in the gym, they do sweat a lot. Often swimmers will forget this and not get their water bottle. But if there’s one thing that is undoubtedly a necessity in your gym bag, it’s your water bottle.

Fins

You should never underestimate the power of a good pair of fins. Although it may take time, you want to do your research and find a pair that won’t blister and get the highest quality pair. Fins will allow you to reach race-like speeds, which you can’t always accomplish in your regular workouts.

Earplugs

The internet is filled with places where you can buy earplugs to keep the water out of your ears as you swim. If you search hard enough, you’ll be shocked at the excellent quality you can find. Now, these may not be a must-have for all swimmers, but they certainly are helpful.

Using these items, you’ll be all set when you go swimming!

The 5 Things You Need to Know for Pilates Training

Pilates is becoming a more and more popular form of exercise, and it’s no wonder. With its muscle stretching equipment and focus on core and truck toning; it’s a way to exercise that places emphasis on control, rather than endless reps and muscle exhaustion.

It allows you to become lithe and tone, which is probably why it is such a popular form of exercise for models.

This exercise technique was founded by Joseph Pilates, who created various pieces of equipment to use while training his body. He found that by combining the equipment with certain exercise routines, he got the desired fitness results

While most studios around the world feature some of the same basic equipment, the reformer, the trapeze table, specialized chairs, and a mat, what makes different types of Pilates is basically the differences in the Pilates equipment

That said, if you’re a newbie and have never stepped foot in a Pilates studio, then all that may seem a little intimidating.

Are you unsure of how Pilates actually works, and that is holding you back from taking your first class? Here’s a quick overview of what you need to know before signing up for your first Pilates class, allowing you to walk in and start working out with confidence.

Five things you need to know before you take your first Pilates class:

What is the purpose of Pilates?

Pilates is a type of exercise that focuses on your core and trunk, but also other muscles as well.

Your muscles are getting strengthened by working against gravity.

That is done either on a cushioned mat (that is thicker than a yoga mat) or with a machine, called a “reformer” (a sliding platform that has a combination of pulleys, springs, and a stationary bar).

What should you wear to a class?

Shorts are a no-go since you’ll be lifting your legs and moving around a lot. Wear form-fitting clothes that hug your body, such as leggings or capris.

You can either go barefoot or wear socks (however, check with your studio first, since they each have their own clothing protocol). If you opt for socks, make sure that they have some rubber grip on the bottom, so you don’t slip or slide on the mats.

What should you expect to learn at a beginner class?

When it comes to beginner classes, each Pilates studio teaches the same established set of Pilates moves.

These moves include:

●      The Hundred (a breathing exercise that targets your core strength and stability).

●      The roll up (a slow, precise move which will stretch your spine, the back of your body, and strengthen your abdominals).

●      Leg circles (that are designed to strengthen your hips and core stabilizers).

●      Rolling like a ball (which will massage your spine and open up your back)

●      Series of 5 (a group of moves that will strengthen your abdominals and your back muscles).

How will you feel after your first class?

Since you are exercising a few different muscles at one time, it’s normal to feel pretty uncomfortable and feel a “burning” sensation while at the class. The next day you’ll feel sore as well. That’s normal, and it’s okay!

You are exercising muscles that you don’t use regularly, and that’s a good thing. As the week progresses, the soreness will go away but probably return at your next class.

As you exercise your muscles and strengthen them, you will experience less discomfort.

You won’t be alone.

You may be feeling self-conscious; however, if you are taking the beginner class than there are others there for the first time as well

Even if you study all the correct “lingo,” each studio may use their own terminology, so you may find yourself at times unsure of what the instructor is directing you to do. A great way to avoid getting confused is to place yourself in the center of the class and keep an eye on the regulars.

You can simply allow the other participants to guide you through the class. Besides, some people learn better visually, and that is a great way to do so.

Conclusion

If you’ve been thinking about taking a beginner Pilates class, then hopefully, this helps you to feel a little more ready. Just remember, at some point, everyone at the studio was in the same place as you–just starting out.

Pilates is a great way to exercise and center your body. If you think that you may be interested in starting taking classes, then don’t wait and find a local studio near you and sign up for a class

Beat Winter Weight with Personal Training

Not surprisingly, weight gain during the winter months is a common issue for many people. What can start as a simple pound or two gained in October swiftly builds, especially as the holidays arrive, and there are more “treats” available and large dinners to attend.

Combine those extra calories in with the shorter days and less inclination to get out and exercise (even if it’s only a drive to the gym) and it’s easy to find the scale rising.

While it’s fine to indulge, not everyone is as excited about gaining some extra pounds. Especially those of us that are on a diet to lose weight, or are trying to simply maintain it.

The good news is that you don’t have to be discouraged or dread the cold because neither of those needs to mean that you still can’t beat the weight gain. It’s all merely a matter of balance, some guidance from your personal training program, and a few carefully applied weight-watching tips.

Six Tips To Beating Winter Weight Gain

Stay active

One of the key ways to fight weight gain is to stay active. No, you don’t have to run a marathon or get involved in extreme sports, but it does help if you stay active. 

One of the reasons why Bethany Athletic Club advocates for our members to utilize personal training is that during busy, hectic times (like the holidays), you are already in the habit of exercising onn a schedule. 

If you need a little more free time during the holidays, it’s incredibly important that you remain mindful of your physical activity. It’s really difficult to make a new habit, but it’s incredibly easy to fall into old habits.

Something so simple as parking at the end of the parking lot to walk to the store or taking the stairs makes all the difference. 

Eat in moderation

Yes, I’m sure that you’ve heard that before, but I’ll repeat it: everything in moderation.

As we grow older, our metabolism slows down, and we don’t require as much food to nourish our bodies and give us energy.

With all the holiday sweets, it can be tempting to gorge ourselves; however, you’ll only regret it.

Try taking a modest portion, and if you are still hungry 15-20 minutes later, return for more.

Another tip is to wait to eat until you are really hungry. Be aware of when your body is telling you that you actually need food, and when you are experiencing “head hunger.”

Your personal trainer can help you form a plan that you can stick to to avoid temptation and leave out guesswork. This can help you stay mindful of how your diet and physical activity work together.

Get involved with a cold-weather sport

Not everyone is into cold-weather actives, and that’s fine. But sometimes it’s a good idea to at least give them a try. You never know, skiing or snowshoeing may be just up your alley.

It can be hard to stay active if you live somewhere where it is extremely cold, or there is a lot of snow. One of the best ways to deal with this is, “If you can’t beat it, join it!”. If you can’t avoid the cold and snow, try getting into it.

If you find friends that share the same interests as you, it will help to increase your social life as well (something that can suffer during the winter months).

Beat the Winter Blues

Another reason that people gain weight in the wintertime is due to the “Winter Blues.” This is in reference to feeling a little down due to lack of sunshine, Vitamin D, and lack of socialization (people tend not to go out as much in the wintertime).

Make sure that you are staying active not only physically, but socially as well. If you feel down, it will result in feeling discouraged, lead to less movement, and perhaps even eating out of boredom.

Watch the calendar

Often with the busyness of the holidays, it can be easy to let time get away from you. When was the last time you went to the gym or took a walk? If you aren’t sure, then it’s been too long.

Try marking on the calendar to keep track of when you last worked out or went for a walk. It will not only keep you motivated but will also inspire you not to miss your scheduled workout days.

Keep yourself accountable

Lastly, yes, it can be easy to get too busy, or get sidetracked and forget about your resolutions-whether it’s to eat in moderation or exercise every day.

An excellent way to avoid that is to find yourself someone to join you in your goals. A partner is a great way to keep yourself accountable, and you’ll be returning the favor and doing the same for them.

Other ways to watch your weight gain in the wintertime is to stay hydrated, drink plenty of water, get plenty of sleep each night, and try to maintain good overall habits. Staying in shape and staying active will all help you to not only avoid winter weight gain but also to keep your mind alert and energized.