Last week, I talked about my love of the TRX. But my second favorite piece of equipment in gym? It's got to be the kettlebell. Kettlebells were originally farm tools in Russia, and were primarily used to weigh crops in the 18th century. Strongmen used to lift them in feats of strength and competitions in the 18th and 19th centuries. Today, they're a common strength training at most gyms. Kettlebells allow for lots of exercises that are compound movements, meaning that you engage two or more joints and engage an entire muscle group or multiple muscles. Because of this, you can easily get a full body workout with a single kettlebell. Plus, exercises like the kettlebell swing can make a great cardio workout. One study that was conducted with a women's college soccer team found that those who did kettlebell exercises instead of steady state cardio exercise (meaning, running laps) had an increase in their aerobic capacity compared to the group who did not do kettlebell … [Read more...]
Soccer Drills for Fun and Fitness
The 2018 World Cup kicks off Thursday June 14, and if you’re a soccer fan like me, then this is one of the highlights of this summer. You get a chance to watch the best players in the world compete for one of the most sought after trophies in all of world sport. So now is a great time to pick up the beautiful game! A recent study from the British Journal of Sports Medicine found that soccer training is some of the best medicine for people with high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and other sedentary related diseases. Since playing soccer includes endurance training, High Intensity Interval Training, and strength training, playing gives you a great overall workout. The study found that recreational soccer improves cardiovascular, metabolic, and muscular fitness. An added benefit is the social, motivational, and competitive aspects of playing a game, which makes playing soccer more fun and inviting way to workout than flying solo at the gym. Bottom line - … [Read more...]
What is HIIT?
Other than being a snappy acronym, what is HIIT? How can you do it? Read below to find out more! An increasingly popular workout nowadays is HIIT, which stands for High Intensity Interval Training. Basically, this means doing a series of workout intervals with little to no rest in between the sets of exercises. HIIT workouts are normally done in a very short, fixed amount of time. Since one of the biggest obstacles to regularly working out is “lack of time”, HIIT workouts are a great way to overcome that obstacle since they’re relatively short workouts due to the higher intensity. Scientific research has also shown that HIIT workouts have some advantages over steady state cardio workouts, like running, because of the higher caloric expenditure over time. To illustrate what that means, if you went for a 30 minute jog, you're going to burn most of the calories for the workout during that 30 minutes. However, if you performed a 30 minute HIIT workout, … [Read more...]