Category: Running

Safety Tips for Outdoor Fitness during the Winter

Healthy Rewards

As soon as daylight savings time goes into effect, it becomes harder to maintain an outdoor workout plan. Winter’s earlier sunsets, inclement weather, and freezing temperatures can be a dangerous combination for those who exercise outside. Handle winter workouts in stride by preparing for the worst with the tips below.

Follow Weather Conditions

Be sure to check the weather forecast before you head outside for a workout. If you have not already, it helps to download a smartphone app with real-time weather updates. That way, you’ll receive warnings when a surprise storm is on the way, which can be helpful while you’re on a run or bicycling outside.

Wear Reflective Clothing

With daylight savings now in effect, the sun sets earlier everyday. If your schedule can only accommodate evening workouts, it is important to stay safe with reflective clothing and accessories. For most workouts, a glowing running jacket or vest with reflective tape should be plenty. Other types of outdoor exercise, such as bicycling or skiing, may need additional gear.

Don’t Forget Sunscreen

It is important to protect your skin from the sun, even when temperatures are low. During outdoor workouts, always wear sunscreen that blocks UVA and UVB rays, plus protective lip balm. If there is snow on the ground, you can shield your eyes from glare using dark glasses or goggles.

Healthy Rewards

Dress Appropriately

In cold weather, your body works to stay warm by concentrating blood flow toward the torso, leaving your hands, head, and feet vulnerable. To prevent frostbite, make sure you wear protective gear on all exposed areas of the body:

  • Hands: Double-up for best results. Layer fleece or wool gloves on top of a pair of thin glove liners made from wicking material like polypropylene. This helps keep heat trapped inside both layers for protection. Plus, if your hands start to sweat, simply remove the outer layer.
  • Head: Wear a hat or headband to shield your ears from low temperatures and windburn. If the weather is extremely frigid, you may even want to cover your face with a scarf or ski mask.
  • Feet: Consider a pair of winter-only workout shoes in one half-size larger than you normally wear, to allow room for thick thermal socks. You can also fit foot-warming insoles inside your shoe for added coziness, which is especially helpful for skiers and other winter sport enthusiasts.

Know the Symptoms of Hypothermia

When planning to spend an extended period of time outdoors, make sure you’re aware of the warning signs of hypothermia:

  • Pale, cold skin
  • Sluggishness
  • Uncontrollable shivering
  • Mental confusion or mumbling
  • Slowed breathing and heart rate

Great tasting protein bars from Promax Nutrition provide the fuel needed to power any workout, during any season. Our bars fit easily in your pocket, offering replenishing protein on the go, whether riding the slopes or working it out on the track. Best of all, our bars are gluten free and never contain artificial sweeteners. Shop online today!

4 Ways to Get in a Water Workout

girl runs into water on beach

Getting in our proper nutrition and protein needs during the summertime can be difficult, especially when we’re always on the run. A lot of people take advantage of the water during the summer, either going to a swimming pool, a lake, or to the ocean. Just because you go to the pool or beach, doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your workout (or your nutrition). Just like you can bring a protein bar with your or a cooler to make sure that you keep your food fresh, you can easily bring a workout with you too. Here are some ways you can workout in the water:

Tread to Shred

If you’re looking for a way to tone your entire lower body, treading water does quite a lot for your core, butt, hamstrings, and quad muscles. You’ll have to be in water that is over your head so you can extend your legs. Point your feet and pull back water while alternating your legs. All the while make sure to keep your core engaged!

Jog Through It!

Many athletes aren’t afraid to admit that running isn’t their favorite activity. It’s hard on the joints and if you weight lift while training, then your joints may have enough stress already. That’s what is great about a water workout—there’s way less stress of the joints! Jogging in the water is a great way to get your heart rate up. You can choose to jog in place and focus on tightening your core, or pick a point (like the other side of the pool) to run to and from. If you’re running in the ocean, a good way to challenge yourself it to run from the beach into waist high water and back. That’ll get your heart pumping!

Make Waves with Kicks

A great way to strengthen your lower core and quad muscles is with kicking. You can hold on to the edge of the pool and kick up your feet. If you want to move a litter more, you can kick around with a kickboard (in the pool or the ocean). To get your heart rate up, it’s a good idea to time yourself and practice doing sprints, alternating the sprint sessions with slower kicks.

Pull Yourself Out!

This exercise works best if you’re in a pool but can be done alongside a dock in a lake or ocean as well. To target your back and shoulders, you can use the edge of the pool to do a pull up. For some, the first time they do this it is quite difficult, and so you may have to work up to a point when you are at many reps. Place your hands on the pool’s edge, elbows pointed out, and push down on the pool edge’s surface so as to pull yourself out. Once your chest is level with the pool edge, lower yourself down to the pool and try again!

Water Water All Around but Not a Drop to Drink

Sometimes we forget that while we’re in the water, it’s still important to drink water ourselves and stay hydrated. While you’re at the pool, lake, or beach, be sure to take water breaks at regular intervals, just as you would if you were working out on land in the gym. Do you have other ways you like to work your body in the water? We’d love to hear them. Feel free to leave a comment on our Facebook page or get in touch with us here at Promax directly!

Sources:
http://www.fitnessmagazine.com/workout/lose-weight/total-body/pool-workout/
http://www.lifescript.com/diet-fitness/articles/m/make_a_splash_8_pool_exercises_to_burn_fat_fast.aspx
http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/fitness_articles.asp?id=74
http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/maia3.htm

The Top 5 Benefits of Exercising in the Morning

BenefitsOfMorningExercise

No matter what time of day you exercise, you are going to reap some benefits. It just so happens that exercising in the morning has benefits other than simply keeping you fit. The next time you grab your morning energy bar, consider the benefits below to see why you should follow it up with a morning work out, even if it’s just a jog around the block.

1.) Get Motivated for the Day.
When you start your day out with exercise, it helps motivate you for the rest of the day. It isn’t just because you already accomplished something, either. It’s because you got your blood flowing and released endorphins that will give you that little extra boost you may need throughout the day.

2.) Clear the Schedule.
One of the most common reasons that people don’t exercise is because they get busy doing other things. In order to exercise, they have to stop what they are doing and maybe even change clothes. Sometimes that just isn’t feasible with a busy schedule. However, when you do your work out before you do anything else, you don’t have to worry about clearing any time in the schedule for it, because it’s already done.

3.) Get Your Metabolism Going
Exercising is just one of the methods you use to boost your metabolism. Your gluten-free protein bars, avoidance of fast food, and strict schedule are other methods. When you start your day with a boost of your metabolism, it helps you keep your metabolism going for the day. Since the hard part is over, keeping it going for the rest of the day starts to seem easy. Before you know it, all the little things you do add up to a healthier body and better lifestyle choices.

4.) Be More Alert.
Because exercise does get the blood flowing, it also gets more oxygen to the brain. Instead of relying on a pot of coffee to wake you up and get your brain going, the extra oxygen will do it for you. This means you can do your job better or perform your daily tasks easier, without having to stop and think about them. If you happen to have academic functions to perform, couple your exercise with a brain-boosting breakfast or protein bar in order to further enhance your intellectual performance.

5.) Keep on Track
When you exercise in the morning, you set yourself up for success for the day. You will think back to the effort you put into that exercise, and you won’t want to waste it by making unhealthy choices later on in the day. If you are someone who has problems with feelings of guilt, your morning exercise will stave those off and help prevent actions later in the day that will make you feel guilty. In other words, you will concentrate more on making healthy choices because you started the day off with one.

These are just a few of the benefits of exercising in the morning. There are so many more that it would be difficult to list them all. As you start your morning routine for the first time, keep in mind that doing something for 21 days in a row will help make it a habit. Make this day one of your three week introduction to a new life.

For more information about how to make the most of your workouts, check back each week for tips from Promax Nutrition.

5 Things You Can Learn from Exercising with Your Children

kids running

Do you enjoy exercising with your children or teens? In a busy day of work, community, and family, it’s natural to look forward to alone time. Running down the street with your tunes in your ears and the sun in your face – alone – is great therapy.

But believe it or not, there are many benefits from exercising with your children – for them and for you. One of your kiddos may just want to get in shape, another might be training for soccer, and the youngest might simply want to spend more time with you. So why not tie on your running shoes and bring someone along with you for that afternoon run? Here are some lessons you may just learn along the way.

Daily exercise is just as important for them. Though we may think back fondly to our younger years, when we could run a mile without thinking about it and played team sports before, during, and after school, our children don’t have as active a lifestyle. More of their day is spent sitting at school and sitting in front of computers and TVs, so they can use the encouragement to get more exercise.

A healthy lifestyle must be taught. Young people don’t instinctively make right food and exercise choices. They need information, the why behind the diet, and encouragement. It might take daily reminders to drink enough water and to include healthy proteins in every meal before these habits became natural.

Children start off with less strength and endurance. This may sound obvious, but you might be surprised at first. Though most of us consider ourselves much more sedentary than our children, it will probably take a few weeks before they develop the strength and endurance to keep up with a longer workout.

It will be much more enjoyable for everyone, then, if you keep the sessions short, about 20 minutes of moderate activity. After a couple weeks, you can add more time or a little more strenuous workouts. Before you know it, you might be the one struggling to keep up! But at first, it’s important to pace yourself.

Young people like to be included. And this doesn’t just mean letting them tag along. Children and teens like to choose the activity – shall we run or play an hour of indoor soccer? – and the gear. The more input they have, the more they’ll take ownership of their own healthy lifestyle. That is completely worth the compromises.

Like any workout plan, this takes commitment. You’ll need to make a commitment to yourself and to your children that you’ll include them in your daily workout. This keeps you and them accountable. On running days, your teens will be ready to improve on their time and keep you puffing down the street. On walking days, your youngest will look forward to telling you everything on his mind.

Working out with children is a great way to pass on healthy habits to the next generation. Why not find a young person in your family or community that you can help today?

For more information about exercise, check back each week for tips from Promax Nutrition.

How to Train for Your First 5K and Live to Tell About It

Marathon

Have you long wanted to run a 5K but never actually completed one? Do you envy your running friends and wish you could talk about your goals or race finish time? It’s time to start dreaming and start doing. Train for your first 5K.

Easier said than done, right? Well, we’re here to help with the simple step-by-step guide to training for your first race. You can do it, just follow these tips.

Understand the training process.

If you have started training for a 5k and then quit, you likely had unrealistic expectations for yourself. No, you can’t instantly run three miles and feel great; if you try, you’ll feel terrible. Instead, recognize that like learning to do anything else, there is a learning curve. Your muscles and mind have to get accustomed to the workout, so expect this to take a couple months to achieve.

Recruit a friend.

Studies have shown you are more likely to stick with your training if you have moral support from a friend. So ask a neighbor, coworker, or family member to train with you. Besides, running is much more fun with company!

There are numerous apps and fitness routines to help you go from “couch to 5K.” Pick one that works for you and your device. Most will help you pace your progress with intervals of walking and light jogging at first to work up gradually to running a 5K.
Keep in mind that these programs are for general users, not you specifically. Sometimes you may need to modify the routine to work for your body. Don’t push your body further than it should go just because “the plan says so.”

Register for a race.

Give yourself a goal to work toward by registering for a 5K race in your area. Put the date in red on your calendar, and motivate yourself to keep going so you will be ready for your first race.

Get the shoes.

Be sure you are working out safely by getting proper running shoes. Make certain your arch is properly supported and your shoes fit well. Then only use those shoes for jogging. Running shoes maintain their support for about 350 miles, so be sure to replace them when necessary. Your shoes protect against stress fractures and other injuries, so make certain to get a good pair.

Go for small improvements.

A key to workout success is being honest with where you’re at. Don’t expect to run a six-minute mile your first time out. Instead, evaluate your current physical shape and level of activity, then celebrate every incremental win above that. Remember, exercise isn’t about impressing the neighbors or beating your coworkers, it’s about improving your own health. Keep that in mind and celebrate each small win.

Guard your recovery.

An important part of your training is the recovery you schedule in between workouts. Don’t run more than every other day at first, and . Listen to your body, and you’ll be good to run for the long haul.
Be sure to eat plenty of protein like
Promax bars to help your muscles recover, too. Protein is an important ingredient in building and repairing muscles, so make that a larger part of your diet.
Get more workout and exercise tips today by visiting our blog or contacting us at Promax Nutrition.

10 Reasons to Start Running

Running

Picture it: you wake up, get dressed, grab an energy bar, and head out into the early morning light. Your purpose—running. Running is, by far, one of the most popular forms of exercise today. When you run, you can get your heart rate up quickly, helping you burn calories. Over time, your body will build up more stamina, and you will be able to run even longer distances. Running and fitness go hand-in-hand. However, if you are new to the world of running, it can seem a little intimidating. Here are 10 reasons why you should add running to your daily exercise routine.

1.      Fewer doctor visits — When you are physically active, especially an intense activity like running, you lower your chances of developing breast and/or colon cancer. It can also help lower your blood pressure with just a few weeks of regular running.

2.      Longer life — Runners have shown to have a longer life span than those who don’t actively run. They also tend to have fewer disabilities.

3.      Burn, baby, burn — Running is one of the best ways to burn calories fast. A person who weighs around 150-160 pounds can burn up to 800 calories in an hour.

4.      No limits — Unlike other exercises that require special equipment and locations, as long as you have a good pair of running shoes, you can run anywhere and anytime. Not only do you have freedom, you can also save lots of money on expensive gym memberships and equipment.

5.      Mental health — Regular exercise, such as running, can keep you mentally fit, as well as physically fit, even reducing signs of dementia as you get older.

6.      Be social — Running is a great way to meet new people. Whether you join a gym or just run at the park, you will find lots of other runners along the way.

7.      Bring a pet — Running is a great way to spend some quality time with your dog. It’s also a great way to make sure your furry friend gets his exercise, too!

8.      All weather — With running, you can run outside when it’s beautiful weather, and when the weather is yucky, you can hit the treadmill. You will never have to miss a running session due to the weather, because it is such a versatile exercise.

9.      Keep calm — Running has been shown to boost the levels of serotonin in your brain, which helps keep you feeling relaxed and calm.

10.  A good night’s sleep — Running, like other exercises, helps you to get a more restful sleep at night, which means you will wake up feeling refreshed and ready to face the world.

Now that you have more than enough reasons to start running, go ahead and put on your running shoes—it’s time for you to hit the road to a long and healthy life.

To learn more about the benefits of running, and how our bars can help fuel your body before and after a long run, contact us at Promax Nutrition.