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Can Weight Training Help with Osteoporosis?

Question:
One of the more popular questions we get get from women is how to retain muscle and or bone mass as they are worried about osteoporosis as they age. Can weight training help with this?
Answer:
The short answer is yes! Weight training is the most effective way to help prevent this. Weight training or weight bearing exercises helps in development of greater bone and or muscle mass which has lasting effects on the lives of pre-menopausal, post-menopausal, and older women. In pre-menopausal women, developing greater peak bone mass as a young adult provides more time before the bones could begin to fracture and deteriorate.
When a women goes through menopause this signifies the decrease of estrogen production and is associated with bone loss (osteoporosis). The most common interventions for preventing and treating osteoporosis can include calcium supplementation, however exercise (weight training or weight bearing exercises) is the most effective way to keep Osteoporosis at bay! There are several studies on weight training that have found regular physical activity with weight bearing exercises that can help increase and more so maintain bone density. After the age of 35, women tend to start losing bone density which mostly has been attributed to inactivity and lack of weight training. The most effective way for women to prevent osteoporosis and try to obtain peak bone mass and retain the muscle or bone mass is to start a resistance-training regimen early and continue it throughout life. After all fitness is not something you do for a week or a couple months and think everything is fine and will be fine, it’s a lifestyle something you should embrace.  At Dynamic Health and Fitness we have a great personal training department with friendly and knowledgeable trainers that can help you reach your maximum potential and health and fitness goals – live life to the fullest!

How Hard Should You Work Out?

Around this time of year we see a large influx of members and a very common question I get asked is “how hard should I work out?”
Now like in most things, the effort you put in will reflect in the goals you achieve, but we need to be very cautious, as if we do too much too soon we can really injure ourselves. Statistically speaking January is the highest time for heart attacks in males in north America, this in part is due to the classic get in shape new year’s resolution. Classic “man syndrome” helps too when you look at a sedentary 45 year old male who decides to start running in January but thinks he’s still that 18 year old track star. Add to that the cold weather, which will restrict blood flow and hamper the lungs capacity you’re asking for trouble. That’s the worst case scenario folks. I’m not trying to put you off I’m just giving you some facts. So let’s look at how to approach this safely. I would strongly recommend a check up with your doctor if you’ve been out of the fitness game for a while.
For this we use an RPE scale (Rating of Perceived Exertion). There are a couple of different scales to use but the most simple and more common is the 10 point scale. This method is you gauging your exercise input and rating you exertion. Generally this is used more for cardio but it can be transferred to other types of training. The trick with this is where, which number should you aim to be at? And my professional answer is it’s impossible to say as there are too many variables. Please make note that the recommendations may not be for you, for example it can depend on your age, size, heart condition, blood pressure, your specific goals, lifestyle etc.
1: A walk in the park (literally at a slow pace with no hills)
2: Fast walking
3: Gentle jog or walking up a steep hill
4: Running a short distance for the bus
5: Sweating just a little, taking deeper breathes
6: challenge but manageable, getting warm
7: Tough
8: Very challenging
9: Extremely difficult
10: Absolute maximum
Now you may realize that with this scale it’s very individual as a walk in the park may be tiresome for some people. As an example I ask my clients to aim for a 5-7 on the RPE scale. Keep in mind I know my clients and have done a full health screen first. If you have any concerns or questions about this or any other health and fitness matters please ask me or any of the trainers at Dynamic and we’d be happy to help. We look forward to seeing you in the gym soon.

What is the Best Way to Lose Body (belly) Fat?

This is probably one of the most popular questions we get day in and day out, month in and month out – you get the point! There is not one “best way” to lose fat. Each person responds differently to different training programs and different scenarios, however personal trainers can apply different principles and techniques when designing their clients’ programs.
Exercises that incorporate multiple muscle groups and are weight bearing (functional training) burn more calories per minute and are therefore better suited for fat loss than non-weight-bearing activities such as yoga and walking that do not use many muscles.
It is often assumed and maybe a myth that low-intensity exercises such as yoga and walking are good for burning fat. However, since the number of calories used per minute is much greater at a moderate to high intensity exercises than at a lower intensity exercises, the total number of fat calories expended during a moderate- to high-intensity workout is much greater than it is during a low- intensity workout of the same duration!
Much of the fat from adipose tissue (which is primarily used during exercise) is lost in the hours following exercise. The amount of fat lost after a workout depends on the exercise intensity during the workout. Interval training (exercise at a moderate to high intensity with short rests in between sets) is a great way to decrease overall body fat.
Both strength training (weights, machines) and endurance/aerobic training (running) have been shown to decrease body fat percentage, however aerobic training (swimming, walking, running) have a greater impact on fat loss than strength training alone but a combination of endurance and strength training results in more fat loss than either exercise done alone.
Overweight does not necessarily equal unhealthy. There are actually plenty of overweight people who are in excellent health! However it’s the fat in the abdominal cavity, the belly fat, that causes the biggest issues. If you have a lot of excess fat around your waistline, even if you’re not very heavy or overweight then you should take some steps to get rid of it.
There are actually a few proven strategies that have been shown to target the fat in the belly area more than other areas of the body.
My top 5 (evidence-based) ways to lose belly fat:

1. Don’t Eat (added) Sugar and Avoid Sugar-Sweetened Beverages!
Added sugar in anything is extremely unhealthy! Sugar is half glucose, half fructose… and fructose can only be metabolized by the liver in any significant amount. When you eat a lot of refined sugar, the liver gets flooded with fructose, and is forced to turn it all into fat. Studies have shown that excess sugar, mostly due to the large amounts of fructose can lead to increased accumulation of fat in the belly Liquid sugar (soda pop) is even worse in this regard. Liquid calories do not make you full in the same way as eating something, so when you drink sugar-sweetened beverages, you end up eating way more total calories then what you would eat! An alarming thing is studies show that sugar-sweetened beverages are linked to a 60% increased risk of obesity in children – so please remember this the next time your child asks for a pop!

2. Eating More Protein Helps to Reduce Belly Fat!
Protein is the most important macronutrient when it comes to losing weight – bar none! It has been shown to reduce food cravings by up to 60% and boost your metabolism by 80-100 calories per day, as well you eat up to 400-500 fewer calories per day!! If your goal is to lose weight or “belly fat” then adding protein to your meals is the single most effective change you can do. Not only will protein help you lose weight but it can also help you avoid re-gaining the weight you have lost if you ever decide to abandon your weight loss efforts!

3. Cut (refined) Carbs From Your Diet!
Carbohydrate restriction is a very effective way to lose fat! Simply put when people cut carbs, their appetite goes down and over time studies have now shown that low-carb diets lead to 2-3 times more weight loss than low-fat diets. Just avoiding the refined carbs (white breads, pastas, etc) should be sufficient, especially if you keep your protein high. There are also numerous studies comparing low-carb and low-fat diets, showing that low-carb diets specifically target the fat in the belly and around the organs and liver which obviously is very important (see above).
4. Eat Foods High in Fiber!
It is often claimed that eating plenty of fiber can help with weight loss. This is very true, however it’s important to keep in mind that not all fiber is created equal! Viscous fibers (fibers that bind water and form a thick gel that “sits” in the gut) can have an effect on your weight loss.
This gel can dramatically slow down the movement of food through your stomach and slow down the digestion and absorption of nutrients which results in a feeling of fullness and reduced appetite. By just adding an additional 10 – 14 grams of fiber per day to your diet you may decrease your calorie intake up to 10% which could lead to 5lbs lost over a few months! As well eating an extra 10 grams of soluble fiber per day may lead to reducing harmful “belly fat”. The best way to get more fiber in your diet is to eat a lot of plant foods like vegetables and fruit. Many different beans or legumes are also a good source, as well as some cereals like oats (without the added sugar!).

5. Aerobic Exercise is (very) Effective at Reducing Belly Fat!
Aerobic exercise is important for various reasons and obviously there is a ton of health benefits linked to aerobic exercise, however it may be the best for reducing “belly fat!” However… keep in mind that I’m not talking about abdominal exercises here. Spot reduction (losing fat in one spot) or doing endless amount of sit-ups is not possible and will not make you lose fat from the belly. Aerobic exercise has been shown to cause major reductions in belly fat in numerous studies. (see above)

The Top 10 Fitness Trends of 2016

1. Wearable technology: Introduced just a few years ago, wearable technology includes fitness trackers, smart watches, heart rate monitors, and GPS tracking devices. Examples include fitness and activity trackers like those from Misfit, Garmin, Jawbone, and Fitbit.

2. Body weight training: Typical body weight training programs use minimal equipment, which makes it a very inexpensive way to exercise effectively. Most people think of body weight training as being limited to push-ups and pull-ups, but it can be much more than that. Body weight training is a trend to watch for the future.

3. High-intensity interval training (HIIT): High-intensity interval training typically involves short bursts of high-intensity exercise followed by a short period of rest or recovery and typically lasts 30-60minutes to perform.) Despite the warnings by some health and fitness professionals of potentially increased injury rates using high-intensity interval training, this form of exercise remains popular in gyms all over the world.

4. Strength training: Strength training remains popular in all sectors of the health and fitness industry and for many different kinds of clients.  Today, however, there are many other individuals (men and women, young and old, children, and patients with a stable chronic disease) whose main focus is on using weight training to improve or maintain strength.

5. Educated, certified, and experienced fitness professionals: This is a trend that continues now that there are accreditations offered by national third-party accrediting organizations for health and fitness and clinical exercise program professional. As the economy continues to grow and as the market for fitness professionals becomes even more crowded and more competitive, interest in some degree of regulation either from within the industry or from external sources (i.e., government) seems to be expanding.

6. Personal training: As more professional personal trainers are educated and become certified (see trend no. 5), they are increasingly more accessible in all sectors of the health and fitness industry. Personal training has been in a top 10 trend for the past 9 years and will continue to be a vital part of the health and fitness industry.

7. Functional fitness: Replicating actual physical activities someone might do as a function of his or her daily routine, functional fitness is defined as using strength training to improve balance, coordination, force, power, and endurance to enhance someone’s ability to perform activities of daily living.

8. Fitness programs for older adults: The highly active older adult (the athletic old) can be targeted by commercial and community-based organizations to participate in more rigorous exercise programs including strength training and team sports. The “baby boom generation” is now aging into retirement, and because they may have more discretionary money than their younger counterparts, fitness clubs should capitalize on this exponentially growing market. Fitness programs for older adults will remain a strong trend for 2016.

9. Exercise and weight loss: The combination of exercise and weight loss is a trend toward incorporating weight loss programs that emphasize caloric restriction with a sensible exercise program.The combination of exercise and diet is essential for weight loss maintenance and can improve compliance to caloric restriction diets and in particular weight loss programs. Most of the well-publicized diet plans integrate exercise in addition to the daily routine of providing prepared meals to their clients.

10. Yoga: Yoga comes in a variety of forms, including Power Yoga, Yogalates, and Bikram Yoga (the one done in hot and humid environments)Instructional tapes and books are abundant, as are the growing numbers of certifications for the many yoga formats. Yoga seems to reinvent and refresh itself every year, making it a more attractive form of exercise.

 

 

Thank You!

We want to thank all our clients for their generous support in our 15th annual food and toy drive in helping to support the women and children at Monarch Place! This year our clients went over and above and helped give more food and toys then any of the years past – thank you for this!

Q: How do I stay on track with my fitness goals I set in the New Year?

A:That is a great question that I get asked this time every year
from my clients and members alike.
Here are my top 5 tips to staying on track in the New Year’s:

1) Don’t wait until 2016 – start right now, a good plan start’s today not tomorrow!
With that busy Christmas/New Years schedule (eating & drinking).
Get a jump on that “filling time” of year and make it easier
to hold yourself accountable during the holiday period.

2) Write your goals down:
Why are you doing this? that’s a question
I ask all my clients, not just what are you goals but what are your
reasons for these particular goals.
Be honest and attach some emotion to your goals, it will mean
more to you if you do.
3) Tell social media:
Everyone loves Facebook, Twitter, Instagram
and Snapchat, let them know all about your goals. It will be harder
to break the habit when you know friends will be asking you
about you progress. Do a weekly or even daily post, even try
adding some pictures.

4) Give it time:
We’ve all heard the Saying “Rome wasn’t built in a day” that
goes for your goals too. I see a lot of people give up way to
soon because they didn’t see results right away. I’ve got news for you
it takes time and hard work, you didn’t get where you are
right now over night nor will you fulfill your desired goals
after 1 week in the gym. Stick with it and you will start to
see results. One step at a time!

5) Make it your new life:
I mean this should be part of a lifestyle change, although
we set short term realistic goals you should also
consider the future too. Once you reach your goals set new ones
play a sport, run a marathon, climb a mountain. The sky’s the limit!

As always the staff at Dynamic Fitness and myself are happy
to help you get started and reach your goals. Seriously consider a consultation or
booking some personal training to add solid structure, safety,
guidance and fun to your gym experience.

Be awesome and all the best now and into 2016!
Luke Ramnath and the Dynamic Health & Fitness Team

Dynamic in the Community

Our slogan is Committed to Fitness, Committed to You!

While we remain committed to serving the fitness needs of our community, Dynamic Health and Fitness is again committed to serving the needs of our community at-large.  Take a look at some of the causes we take pride in contributing to:

 

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mp-300x201     Juvenile-Diabetes1

terry-fox-run-2013      canadian_red_cross_logo

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I’m working hard on my balance and stability for the upcoming Ski and Snow-board season, I’ve seen lots of Bosu’s in the gym. What do they do and will it help?

The Bosu Balance Trainer is an inflated rubber hemisphere attached to a rigid platform that looks like a stability ball cut in half. The name is an acronym that stands for “BOth Sides Up” — a reference to the two ways a BOSU ball can be positioned.
A Bosu is a fantastic piece of equipment and will definitely help with your balance and stability, mainly because of it’s versatility. Its unstable surface requires your core muscles especially the smaller stabilizer muscles that surround your joints — to work harder to keep you balanced.
The Bosu can be one of several pieces of equipment you use in your workout or it can serve as the  surface for your entire workout — either on the flat side or the dome side.  It can also aid in the rehabilitation of certain types of joint injuries.
USING THE BOSU: If you’re new to the Bosu, it’s a good idea to start by standing on either the dome side or the flat side to focus on and improve your balance. As your confidence grows, try different leg exercises or upper body exercises from a standing position.

The Bosu is also great for various oblique and core ab exercises. Normally, when you’re working your abs, you sit on the dome.

*CAUTION: while the Bosu’s unstable surface works your muscles harder, it also challenges your balance. Ask for help if your unsure of how to use it safely and correctly.

How Important is Stretching?

Ask the Expert: Dynamic Health and Fitness
Q.  I hate stretching – is it really that important?

A. In a word, YES!

Here’s what Dr.Frank Lipman, a leading New York health specialist, has to say about stretching:

I believe a lack of flexibility is the root cause or major contributing factor of many injuries and stretching is the solution to this lack of flexibility. It counters the gradual tightening and constriction we all develop from both under- and over-use of our body. It is the perfect antidote for long periods of inactivity and holding still and is just    about the simplest of all physical activities.

Regular stretching will:

  1. Decrease muscle tension, which is the most common cause of back and neck pains and headaches.
  2. Decrease the incidence of all types of injuries, from joint sprains to tendonitis to muscle strains and spasms.
  3. Speed up the recovery rate from injuries.
  4. Increase physical and mental relaxation.
  5. Improve performance of any skilled movement.
  6. Improve and increase body awareness.
  7. Slow the aging process.
  8. Enhance the neurological system.
  9. Improve circulation.
  10. Support the detox system.

Precautions – Don’t stretch an area if you:

  • Recently broke a bone.
  • Have an infection or inflammation in or around a joint involved with the stretch.
  • Experience sharp or acute pain with stretching or joint movements.
  • Recently had a sprain or strain in the area being stretched.
  • Have an unstable joint in the area.
  • Have osteoporosis.
  • Have any disease that needs medical approval before undertaking any new activity.”
The American College of Sports Medicine recommends stretching each of the major muscle groups at least two times a week for 60 seconds per exercise.

Burning Calories (or fat) to Lose Weight?

ASK AN EXPERT: Dynamic Health and Fitness
Q. How many calories do I need to burn to lose weight?
A. A pound of body fat equates to approximately 3,500 calories. If you burn 500 calories more than you eat each day, you will achieve a calorie deficit of 3,500 calories (or one pound of fat) over the period of a week.
So how do you burn that 500 calories per day? Let’s use ‘Bob’ as an example. Bob wants to get fit and trim. He’s tracked his food intake for a couple of weeks to figure out his average daily caloric intake (DCI) which is 2,500 calories per day. If Bob wants to achieve a calorie deficit of 3,500 calories per week, he can choose from three options:
1.  Reduce daily calorie in-take — Bob can reduce his DCI by 500 calories through simple steps like reducing his portion sizes — especially on servings of processed foods or foods containing saturated fats — and by skipping desserts like a 320-calorie slice of chocolate fudge cake! Health Canada’s food guide is a great resource for planning balanced, satisfying meals.
2.  Exercise — Generally speaking, it takes about one hour of moderate to high intensity exercise to burn 500 calories. Bob could jump on the elliptical, jog, walk the dog at a very brisk pace and/or work out using resistance training for an hour a day.
3.  Combined approach of diet and exercise — to achieve a daily calorie deficit of 500 calories, Bob can reduce his DCI by 250 calories/day and burn another 250 calories by add-ing 30 minutes of moderate to high intensity exercise to his daily routine. One thing to remember is 5lbs of muscle is leaner then 5lbs of fat so in Bob’s quest to become fit and trim, his goal should not be to lose weight — rather, he should focus on losing body fat!
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