The Weekly Spin: 30 April 2012

By Darren Stehle

Here’s what I’ve found to be of interest in the last week for health and fitness news.

Hit a Training Plateau? Change It Up!

Our bodies are designed to become accustomed to routine physical activity. When you do exactly the same thing over an extended period of time (e.g. the same weight training program), adaptation slows down as the body attempts to return to homeostasis. To keep getting results, you have to shock the body into having to ‘re-adapt’. Generally speaking adaptation tapers off in 4-6 weeks, at least for strength training for the average population. That’s when it’s time for a new program or routine.

Relaxation and Meditation as Crucial to Health as Diet and Exercise

I can tell you from my own experience just how important meditation is to both my mind and body. If my mind is racing or if I’m upset, so is my body in response. My heart rate and blood pressure go up with mental stress. This happens to all of us. Exercise helps to calm the body and to calm the mind as a side effect. The converse is also true. If you find that you are still stressed out even after exercise focus on calming the mind as well.

Avoid Foods with More Than 5 Ingredients

The more ingredients in processed food, the greater the chance of chemicals, preservatives and other additives that more than likely should never enter your body.

The Health Benefits of Having a Dog

I know of people who have lost 50 pounds or more by adopting a dog and thus a more active lifestyle. For others, having a dog means more ‘human’ interaction with other dog owners.

When I adopted my dog, Buster, from friends, I had been looking for almost two years. I knew why I wanted a dog and was willing to design my life around having a relationship with my dog to increase my quality of life. I have never regretted my decision. My happiness and level of calm increased and I learned more about myself in learning how to handle having a dog.

Here’s a picture of Buster and me last September, at the cottage.

Tips to Keep to Your Exercise Routine

Keeping a regular exercise routine is, well, all about being ‘regular’. One of my favourite tips is to exercise first thing in the morning. It’s great because you accomplish something ‘for you’ before working for anyone else, and you feel more energized and happier all day long.

(Thanks to Tzabia Siegel @foodcoach for the Tweet!)

Want to Build Muscle?

This is a great program for guys who want to put on muscle. I enrolled in the program a couple of years ago and found the coaching format to be of great value. I also use other services offered by the same company, Precision Nutrition, to help coach my clients in nutrition. You can’t go wrong with these guys!

Until next week, be well!

© 2012 Darren Stehle. All Rights Reserved.