Section 1: The basics of a healthy lifestyle
Fitness Tips for Men
1. Take frequent rest breaks—your body needs time to recover between exercise sessions.
2. To retain strength, you need to work with every major muscle group and connective tissue twice a week.
3. Use the old Nordic Stairway to boost your cardiovascular endurance: Start with one leg, one foot, one hand on each step; when your arm’s outstretched, switch to the other hand and do the same for the other leg.
4. To increase muscle mass, try walking on the spot with good posture; you can also do it with your hands clasped.
5. Get going! If you don’t take the first step, you’ll never get there.
6. You can exercise for as little as 15 minutes.
What to do with your hands
Fitness Tips for Men When you’re getting on top of those biceps and forearms, it’s important to remember that you need to think of these muscles as separate structures. When it comes to raising your arms, always keep your elbows out and active, not locked out to the sides.
How to get stronger
Be smart about how you perform any exercise, and always start with moderate intensity. Aim to do a certain number of repetitions without it feeling like hard work. You want to feel like you’re really working hard when you’re lifting heavier weights.
On the other hand, try to think of push-ups as a vertical movement, rather than an upper-body exercise. “When you do a push-up, your body is naturally inclined to push down on the floor.
Exercising on a budget
As the author of dozens of best-selling books on exercise and health, Brad Schoenfeld spends a good amount of his time in airports, airplanes, and hotels. It’s part of the job. So he keeps a few healthy lifestyle tools close by: His head is always on a swivel, and his phone, headphones, and computer are never far from reach. Fitness Tips for Men Whether he’s checking on his kids on Skype or talking up a good challenge on Deal or No Deal, Schoenfeld’s favorite gadgets help him work out wherever he is.
To get in the zone, Schoenfeld turns on some smooth jazz and a hot yoga track. He also always carries his bicep curls DVDs with him and listens to music while he performs them. He finds that when he goes through the motions, he ends up being more effective and losing weight.
How to maintain your motivation
Get your friends and loved ones on board. Encourage them to follow your workouts with you and celebrate your successes as if they were your own.
Stretch after your workouts. Not only is this beneficial to your body and your mind, but it also shows others you care.
If it’s not broken, don’t fix it. There are no absolutes when it comes to fitness. Stick with what you’re comfortable with and try new things at your own pace.
Go for the high-intensity interval training (HIIT) workouts. Doing short, fast-paced workouts, particularly when followed by a 15-minute stretching routine, help increase the metabolic rate and help with fat loss and muscle gain.
Nutrition tips for men
1. FAST FACTS
It’s impossible to get enough protein without carbs—so if you don’t have the time to make an elaborate protein shake every day, start your day with a half a cup of almond milk. Or go with a glass of milk with some nuts or peanut butter. Fitness Tips for Men Once your stomach’s full hit the gym. “If your food choices are sporadic, you’ll often opt for the greasy street fries on the way to the gym instead of a good meal,” says fitness expert and professional boxer Tony Smith. “They’re tempting, but will leave you in a horrible mess.”
Read more: Nutrition Tips for Women
Here are five essential tips to help your diet, workouts, and recovery.
If you want to burn fat, avoid fried foods, white bread, and refined carbs. Eat more vegetables and eggs and drink lots of water.
Working out without working up a sweat
It sounds like a paradox, but it’s a common mistake. “I see men doing exercises that aren’t nearly as effective as they think,” says strength coach Mark Rippetoe. Fitness Tips for Men He advises giving the program a try, then tweaking as needed to get the most bang for your buck. For example, if you’re performing overhead press work, try raising the bar a few pounds for each set. This will make the exercise harder, but you won’t bust your ass. “Not all exercises are created equal,” says Rippetoe.
RELATED: 11 Exercises for Abs You Can Do at Your Desk
Eating too few calories
Calorie counting is a key part of any diet, and it’s important to know how many calories you need to lose, maintain, or gain weight. The problem is that it’s easy to get overwhelmed with all of the different numbers.
Take it slow and steady
“It doesn’t matter how fast you think you’re moving, you’re going slower than you think,” says personal trainer John Nicholas Gonzalez, owner of L.A.’s Trepidation Gym. “That’s why you need to have a good steady gait.” That means placing a foot closer to the opposite foot each time you lift it; Fitness Tips for Men lengthening the stride, not speed; and not jumping around or changing directions as often as you might think is helpful. “The mistake is to go from zero to 60 all the time,” he says. You may start jogging and then suddenly have to stop, which sends your heart rate and breathing up. “You’re not giving yourself enough time to recover, and you’re not giving the muscles in your legs a chance to warm up,” he says.
Keep it old school with the Smith machine
As the oldest gym equipment around, the Smith machine is the perfect weapon for anyone who wants to put on some serious muscle. Its heavy-duty metal construction makes it sturdy enough to stand on your own, yet lightweight enough to pull it around. (Also, you can do push-ups, so there’s that). Fitness Tips for Men The original straight-back version is perfect for testing your upper-body strength, and it’s easy to adjust to various heights.
If you can’t find a Smith machine at your gym, all you need is an ab wheel (fancy name for a balance board). These wheels use your own body weight to provide resistance as you perform a variety of fitness moves. Over time, the combination of high-impact training and all-around weight training will tighten and sculpt your body, creating lean, sexy lines.
Master the plank
THE ESSENTIAL FITNESS TIPS YOU NEED TO START TODAY! Get the lowdown on today’s hottest exercises. This is how you do a plank. By Julie Upton, Special to the Globe and Mail
Fitness Tips for Men The core is what keeps you stable on your feet as you exercise. The easier you can work out your core, the more efficient your workouts will be. We’ve simplified the core work required for the plank to five basic moves. Fitness Tips for Men Do one of these a day, focusing on holding your plank for at least 30 seconds. Once you’ve nailed the five moves, tackle the full plank, as a straight-ahead exercise. We all know plank. But, did you know plank is an excellent full-body core workout?
Learn the secret to burpees
THE FITNESS TIPS YOU NEED TO START TODAY! Get the lowdown on today’s hottest exercises.
Sleep is key
Just as nutrition is as important as physical exercise when it comes to staying healthy, getting the rest you need is essential for ensuring that you stay in peak form. ‘When you sleep poorly and do not get the recommended seven to nine hours of sleep a night, you are more likely to gain weight, experience cardiovascular disease, and get depressed, but also more likely to give in to cravings for fatty foods,’ says Dr. Phillip Tierno Jr. Fitness Tips for Men a cardiologist, an epidemiologist at NYU. ‘Also, if you take a nap during the day, you probably will not stay in high-performance shape the following day.’ He says your workouts should focus on you, not on results. ‘If you go out there and push yourself hard, and you do that well and you feel good, then that’s good, but that’s not how it should be.