Author Archives: Russell Laurie

Exercise Myth Busters #26

You should only drink water when you’re thirsty

Your body needs more water than you are aware of. Normal, healthy muscle is made up of more than 70% water and water is also one of the primary ways that vitamins and minerals are transported around the body.

If your intake of water is low then you are at risk of losing strength and generally you will feel tired, this is because water helps you to get rid toxins built up in the body, inadequate water intake will allow for a greater toxin build up leaving you feeling sluggish. Drinking water can also control your appetite as it can make you feel fuller so you don’t need to eat as much.

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Exercise Myth Busters #25

I can eat whatever I like as long as I exercise.

Although exercise is an important contributor to successful long-term weight loss and management, to reap the rewards of all your hard work in exercise and fitness training, it is essential to establish and maintain a healthy and balanced diet. This will not only enhance your weight loss but provide you with the nutrients your body needs to function correctly, recover post training and continue to improve with exercise. However within a balanced diet you can treat yourself from time to time as a reward for all your hard work.

Exercise Myth Busters #24

Eating Chocolate Is Healthy Providing It Is Dark Chocolate

Research has shown that dark chocolate does have some health benefits due to the antioxidant effects of cocoa.  That however does not mean that all dark chocolate is healthy, i.e. sugar is added to improve its taste which can lessen the effects of cocoa. It must also be consumed in moderation, eating a whole block in one sitting will certainly negate the positive effects it may have on you. So read the nutritional and ingredient information carefully before you purchase just any ‘dark chocolate’.

Should Women Lift Heavy Weights?

By Russell Laurie

Many women avoid strength training because they’re afraid it will give them massive, Schwarzenegger-sized muscles.  But while strength training can initially increase your overall weight (muscle is heavier than fat), it certainly won’t cause you to look bulky, and will make women look smaller, firmer and toned.

Women simply do not have enough testosterone, a key hormone that allow for increased muscle mass. In fact, women have ten to thirty times less of the essential hormones than their male counterparts. Unlike most men, women who seek to gain muscle mass certainly do not have an easy time accomplishing this goal.  Most female strength athletes with large muscular physiques are only able to achieve this from an extremely vigorous and specialised workout plan over a long period of time and are often taking muscle-building drugs, such as anabolic steroids or growth hormones.  Weight training alone will not build large muscles in most women, and the ordinary exercisers definitely won’t get anywhere close to being able to.

As your lean muscle increases, so does your resting metabolism, and you burn more calories all day long. Generally speaking, for each 1-2kg of muscle you gain, you burn 70 to 100 more calories each day, which translates into 3000 additional calories per month which would ultimately result in a weight loss of 4.5-5kg in a single year doing nothing more than increasing your muscle mass by 1-2kg.

Some more reasons why every woman should add strength training to her workout regimen:
• To preserve bone mass and decrease the risk of osteoporosis
• To reduce blood pressure
• To improve your athletic performance
• To create strong tendons and ligaments
• To lower the risk factors for various diseases
• To reduce your risk of injury, back pain and arthritis
• To boost resting metabolism (the amount of calories your body burns when it’s not doing anything), and fight the creeping weight gain of advancing age

Although the average woman won’t lift the same load as the average man, all the general strength training principles apply equally to both sexes. That means that to get the benefits of strength training, you need to do it often enough (two or three times a week), and with the right weights (keeping the weights heavier enough that you can only perform between six to twelve repetitions per set).

So, should YOU Strength Train? 

If you want to lose weight, burn more fat, look and feel stronger and have stronger bones, then ABSOLUTELY!