Women Only?!… Not Cool!

ktadmin Posted in Fitness, Training notes,Tags: , , , , ,
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I came across some new footwear from Nike, the Nike Studio Wrap.  See for yourself:

Nike-Studio-WrapsI know!  Perfect for martial arts training, in the sometime less then dirt free Dojo Floor!  Practical, has a cover you can wear on your way home.

Nike-Studio-Wrap-Pack-555173_004_C_PREM

I can do without the other accessories however they could be turned into non-obvious self-defense tools in a pinch… 😉  There is one really big problem…They are for Women Only!  What was Nike thinking, why are they discriminating against Men who practice Karate (or Yoga)?!  I’ve written Nike but I doubt I’ll get a response…

I wonder how you convert men’s sizes to women’s…?  …Nah…

Dark Chocolate!

ktadmin Posted in Diet, Fitness,Tags: , , ,
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Dark-chocolateLike we needed a reason…A new study finally explains why Dark Chocolate is good for your Heath!!   The study, released by Louisiana State University, tested cocoa powders in the digestive tract and found some microbes in the gut use the dark chocolate to improve heart health.  “Good bacteria in the stomach feasts on the chocolate and then produce compounds that are anti-inflammatory cardiovascular tissues that absorb the compounds, improving your heart health.”

The study’s lead researcher, John Finley, elaborates, saying, “When these compounds are absorbed by the body, they lessen the inflammation of cardiovascular tissue, reducing the long-term risk of stroke.”  (Via HealthDay)

So go ahead, reach for that extra piece of dark chocolate. But while you’re at it, add some fruit. “Scientists say combining dark chocolate with solid fruits like pomegranates and acai could provide even greater benefits.” Dark chocolate is also full of antioxidants and can help reduce blood pressure, ease depression and control blood sugar.  Just make sure your dark chocolate is made up of 70 percent cocoa or more!

Get Karate Fit!

ktadmin Posted in Fitness, Karate,Tags: , , , ,
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We are all looking to get in and stay in shape.  If you want to get serious practice Karate!  Karate combines core, cardio and stretching to give you the best workout available.

fitness facts for karateOSU!

How to Cure a Cold in a Day (or Two)

ktadmin Posted in Control, Fitness, Recipes and Health Facts,Tags: , , ,
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Mid-February I was scheduled to have surgery.  A few days before the surgery, 3 days to be exact, I came down with a terrible head cold.  Two days before surgery I was miserable, the doctor said we would probably have to reschedule if I wasn’t better and I saw no way that was going to happen.  However I was very determined not to reschedule, I was stronger than any cold!  FIrst thing I did was hit the cold with a strict regiment of Sudafed (the good kind), Robitussin and Tylenol, in addition I was drinking 3-4 16 oz glasses of fluid an hour, plus Airborne several times a day.  Since my stomach was fine, I could eat so I consumed the hottest, spiciest food I could get.  It was painful but amazingly helpful for the congestion!

Basically I created what I like to call a hostile work environment for whatever bug had taken up residence in my body.  To my wonders, it worked.  Less than a day and a half after I began my super cold regiment I had surgery with just a tinge of remaining congestion, which surgery seemed to clear up, probably from the oxygen and anaesthesia.  From past experience I have no doubt that if I had not been so aggressive my surgery would have been rescheduled.  Was it the regiment, a sort lived cold or just dumb luck?  Guess I won’t know for sure until the next time I get a cold, though I am in no hurry to find out!

Here are some of the resources I found to help me come up with my cold remedy regiment:

Get Rid of a Cold Naturally Fast
How to beat a cold in 24 hours
10 remedies that do not treat a cold
Cold Remedies

Here are two other neat health tricks that helped me out:

Clear Nose Congestion

While Sudafed works it isn’t always practical, especially at night.  Here’s an easier, quicker, and cheaper remedy to relieve sinus pressure:  Alternate thrusting your tongue against the roof of your mouth, then pressing between your eyebrows with one finger. Basically you are massaging or rocking the vomer bone in your nasal passage back and forth which helps loosen and breaks up your congestion.  It takes about 20 seconds for your congestion to start to drain and you to feel some relief.

Cure a Tickling Throat

A healthy remedy for that tickle in your throat that can cause you to cough and gag.  There is a better way to scratch your throat itch other than a lozenges:  Scratch your ear!  That’s right scratching your ear creates a nerve reflex in your throat that can relieve the tickle causing muscle spasm.

As always, wash your hands, don’t touch your face, drink plenty, get plenty of sleep, exercise, eat healthy; basically live a healthy lifestyle, this is the best way to prevent a cold.  But when the inevitable happens, hope these help you as much as they have helped me.

Coffee…NO!!

ktadmin Posted in Diet, Fitness,Tags: ,
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I do not drink Coffee…EVER.  Most people I know drink Coffee, they are addicted.  Most like to start their day with a hot cup of Joe, stating it helps wake them up and get their day going.  Given that Coffee has no nutritional value, is addictive and many negative side-effects a bit extreme just to wake up.

If you have a hard time waking up in the morning and want to avoid Coffee, there is a better way.  That is right there is a better way to wake up; eat an Apple.  Now if you are regular Coffee drinker this may not work for you right away, but Apples are far more healthy for you and usually less expensive too!

coffee-appleHow does it work?  Why is this so?  Fructose, a natural sugar found in fruits, like apples, provide the energy boost you need.  An apple contains approximately 20 carbohydrates, your body uses these carbohydrates for fuel.  Apples are high in fiber causing the natural sugar to be absorbed more slowly into the system, avoiding the common let down feeling so common after the initial energy buzz of coffee has worn off.  Fiber is filling and will keep you from craving a snack or another cup of coffee.  For most people a steaming cup of coffee doubles as breakfast; having an apple instead benefit far more than any boost or benefit of coffee as a diet aid.  Apples usually contain less than 100 calories each; having no dietary cholesterol or fat.  The combination of fiber and vitamins apples contain may help to lower overall cholesterol meaning better blood flow making you more alert!   Apples are a great source of B vitamins, which aids in metabolism; and, beta carotene, a well studied antioxidant known to have a long list of health benefits that include warding off respiratory infections, lowering the risk of certain types of cancers, lowering the risk of heart disease and even protecting against ultraviolet radiation when combined with Vitamin C (also found in apples).  Vitamin C is known to help the body fight infections.  If there is temptation to grab a multivitamin to go with that cup of java, think of this: if a vitamin were to hold all the vitamins, minerals, and fiber of an apple, it would probably be the size of an apple!

When they say and Apple a Day…Guess they really knew what they were talking about!

Email is healthier…?!

ktadmin Posted in Fitness,Tags: , , , ,
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At least that is the claim, really not a claim as much as the basis for this post.  Why is email healthier for you?  The reason is simple, every time to lick a stamp you are consuming one-tenth of a calorie.  Yes, one-tenth of a percent is what you are saving every time you send an email instead of a letter.  I am afraid there is a great injustice being done to young Brides as they invite all their relatives to their wedding!  TEN calories for every 100 people you invite!!

So, why am I writing this?  It does seem a little ridiculous doesn’t it?  It is.  Obviously you will burn off that one-tenth of a calorie walking to the mailbox to send your letter, something that doesn’t happen with email.  But the point really is how silly and obsessive we can be about calories and health.  We can be so silly and obsessive that our common-sense goes out the window.

My point is; when we are sitting surfing the internet or writing an email, we are not active.  When we are not active, we atrophy.  Do yourself a favor, write a friend a letter, consume one-tenth of a calorie and then walk to the mailbox or post office and mail that letter!  Your friend will probably be pleasantly surprised too!  Walking to the mailbox can be the first step towards a more active and healthy life.  Give it a try…

Staying in Shape

ktadmin Posted in Fitness, Training notes,Tags: , ,
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OK, I have a life and I am not an obsessed person, which means …I have a life!  I do not live to eat nor do I live to be in perfect shape.  Pathetic some may say but they probably don’t have a life. Or they are independently wealthy!   Yes we all attend Karate class at least once or twice a week but that isn’t enough.

Balancing job, family, chores, and the a sundry other tasks and commitments in your life and there is precious little time left for sleep let alone a 10 mile run (ok 5 mile run)!  But that doesn’t mean we can’t stay in shape we just have to make it part of your day where you can spare a few minutes here and there.  Here is what I do through out the day to help stay in shape.

25-40 pushups
3 sets of 30 second planks (or 30-50 situps)
30-50 lunges (each leg!)
15-30 squats (add a jump when coming up for some additional burn)

On days when I haven’t had any time I do these all before bed as it helps me sleep (I know that doesn’t apply to everyone).  I also find doing these before bed seems to help me burn calories when I sleep or at least the scale seems to reflect that in the morning.

Obviously this should not be all the exercise you get but it is a good start to staying/getting toned.  If you have access to stairs I like to do 10-15 flights for a quick cardio workout.

Start with this, add in as much of your Karate workout as room/time allows for and you will find that you look forward to your little exercise breaks more with eash day.  If you commit to doing this 6 days a week for 3 months it will become part of your daily routine for ever…!

 

A diet that gives real results

ktadmin Posted in Diet, Fitness, Training notes,Tags: , , ,
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I have been watching what I eat for the past 3-4 months.  Over that time I have lost a few and gained a few pounds.  Overall my weight is down about 5 pounds.  Honestly I am only have about ten pounds of fat to loose, some of that weight needs to be converted.  I know this has some people rolling their eyes in disgust.  The truth is I could just as easily tell you I was 100 pounds over weight and that I had lost 90 pounds, it doesn’t really matter.  The fact is losing weight is difficult no matter what your start weight.  The only way to lose weight is the hard way.  Yes we all know that 20 year old that can shed 20 pounds in a week, that isn’t normal and they will pay for it when they are 40!

abs-waistlineI need to say that again.  The only way to lose weight is the hard way.  You see it is simple math, (there go those eye rolls again!), our bodies are pretty simple machines when you ignore all the complexity.  Our metabolism burns so many calories everyday regardless of our activity, if we are not doing much that is all we need to take in to “maintain” our weight. If you want to lose weight, then you need to either take in less or burn off more.  You now know the secret of ALL weight loss programs, minus the expensive meals, books, DVD’s, rich spokes people who have personal Chef’s and trainers, just the facts.  Now if you want to pay me money for this, if that will help motivate you then by all means, show me the money!  You can send it to me through the Donation Button at the top of the Right menu column.

So don’t be fooled into screwing up your metabolism with a cabbage diet or all steak, miracle pills, or well you get the idea.  It’s time to quit fooling yourself into thinking there is an easier way, do the work, control your inclination to put food in your mouth and suck it up!

Your current height, weight, and age doesn’t matter, so keep it simple.  One secret, if you are hungry, drink water, our bodies can’t discern between hunger and thirst, that might help.  Stick to the following schedule and you WILL lose weight.

Men
Eat 1800 Calories a Day
Example Schedule:
Breakfast:
Eat 500 calories
(When you wake up)
Lunch:
Eat 600 calories
(During your lunch break)
Dinner:
Eat 700 calories
(At least 3 hours before bedtime)
Women
Eat 1500 Calories a Day
Example Schedule:
Breakfast:
Eat 400 calories
(When you wake up)
Lunch:
Eat 500 calories
(During your lunch break)
Dinner:
Eat 600 calories
(At least 3 hours before bedtime)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Results:
Will vary but you should lose about 1 lb per week…or about 52 lbs per year!!

What do you do if you eat more than this each day?  You guessed it…Exercise.  Get on the bike or treadmill but remember working off the extra calories is hard work! 

For example:  Running for 30 minutes at 5 MPH will only burn off around 380 calories, sounds good until you try to run at 5 mph for 30 minutes!!  Don’t believe me, calculate it for yourself.

Remember…if this were easy, everyone would be skinny.  And if you think this was helpful or if you feel it will help you stick to the program, donate!!



Disclaimer: Always check with your doctor before starting any diet.

Hard Work ≠ Exercise

ktadmin Posted in Articles of Interest, Fitness, Training notes,Tags: , ,
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Don’t take the title wrong, I am not making light of hard work.  I have engaged in hard work most of my life, real hard work.  I’ve work construction pouring concrete for 10+ hours a day, raising houses, roofing in the middle of summer and digging ditches.  Real hard work not the kind you hear about at the water cooler!  Hard manual work can be physically exhausting.  Hard work can make your body stronger.  Hard work can be very rewarding.

But… Hard Work is not Exercise.

As someone who has done hard physical labour for most of my life, this was a hard pill to swallow.  The more I meditated on this thought the more I realised the truth of it.  Hard work can make you strong.  Hard work can give you endurance.  But still, hard work is not exercise because it isn’t usually beneficial to your whole body.  Not saying I want to arm-wrestle with a steel worker!  But even the steel workers (I had one for a student) need exercise.  Exercise is about more than strength of a specific muscle group, it is about fitness.  The downside of hard work is it often leaves you to exhausted to exercise.  Any good exercise program will help you accomplish 3 main things, elevate your heart rate (aerobic), work your muscles (strengthen) and most importantly and often forgotten improve your agility (flexibility).  No hard work is going to do all three of these.  Add a balanced diet of appropriate portion sizes and you have yourself a recipe for good health and happy thoughts.  Make your exercise a part of your daily life by spreading throughout your day and night, it makes it harder to skip and will improve your mood and day.

People think exercising is hard work, if they do tell them they are doing it wrong, because Hard Work isn’t exercise!

The funny thing about exercise, is most people view it as a chore, but no matter who you are, you always feel better afterwards…

Does Age Matter?

ktadmin Posted in Articles of Interest, Fitness, Training notes,Tags: , , ,
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I’ve been asked this question many times. Invariably I respond with, No. But does it? On some level, of course it does, but what does that mean?

Interestingly I started to write this post back in November of 2007, a little over 4 years ago!  Guess I needed some time (and age) to gain the right perspective!  So what do I think, 4 years later?  I still stand by my above statement, No.  But I will add, your age doesn’t matter if you are willing to put in the work.  We all age differently, some of this is genetic, however some of this depends on the lifestyle we choose to live.  Do we eat regular healthy meals, get proper rest, exercise regularly and manage our stress correctly?  Those are your lifestyle choices.  Now I am a realist and not all of us have a choice about all the items in that list.  Often our jobs don’t allow us to eat healthy meals or get enough rest and too often the rocket our stress levels to unhealthy heights!  After all we live in the real world.  If you are living in a McMansion with two Mercedes in the driveway then these factors are your chosen lifestyle.  If you are supporting a family and getting by these factors are called life.  That doesn’t mean we can’t do things differently to reduce the negative affects these factors can have on our life and our training.  It does however take a choice and the will to act on that choice.

Age doesn’t matter if you are willing to put in the work.  This is true for a student of any age, however, as we age more work is typically necessary!  Yes, there always is a catch.  As we age we lose two things, strength and flexibility.  Everyone focuses on strength OR flexibility but few focus on both.  Flexibility is actually the more important of the two since many stretching exercises will also increase your strength.  IN this type of article it is nearly impossible for me to tailor the proper regiment since (especially as we age) everyone’s needs are different.  By that I mean there are many factors to consider, like your body type, what your bodies strengths and weaknesses are (they may not be what you think), and what your current lifestyle is like.  If you can’t make a program fit into your lifestyle then you might as well not even try because you are setting yourself up for failure.  Harsh, blunt, yes, but true.

If you haven’t workout in a long time here is what I suggest.  If you have been “in shape” (not obese) most of your life AND you have never been in or had any traumatic injury then I can pretty safely bet you could use most well rounded fitness programs with great success.  If you don’t fall into that category and you are over 30-35 years of age I strongly suggest you go to your nearest Physical Therapy clinic and ask for a free assessment.  Most PT clinics will give a free assessment which will give you some guidance on your bodies strengths and weaknesses.  If you are willing to pay for one or two visits most Physical Therapists will give you customized exercises to get your body “stable” thus reducing your chances of injury.

Notice above I did not say get yourself to the nearest Dojo or Yoga studio!  If you already attend, great but if you are serious about being the best martial artist you can be, then you need to start with a strong foundation.  I do not offer this advice lightly, I am speaking from experience.  I have had several significant traumas to my body, however I have always been “in shape” and very active (aside from trauma recovery times).  Even though I consider myself a competent trainer and martial artist I believe in always seeking help where needed.  I spent one and a half years in physical therapy and it was worth the time and effort.  Alone I now know that I would have continued to damage my weak points and strengthen my strong points, which in an exaggerated sense leads to a Quasimodo state of fitness; strong, functional yet not well rounded and balanced!

To wrap this up, if you are willing to put in the work make sure it is the right work.  If going to a PT isn’t an option test your own range of motion and reflexes.  No one is usually aware of their blind spots and that includes physical blind spots because we learn to compensate for them.  If you are going to go it alone just make sure you get an diverse mixture of flexibility and strength training, heavy on the flexibility training.

All this is worthless if you aren’t taking in a diet of healthy food and appropriate portions.