Tag Archives: weight lifting

Benefits of Weight Training for Women

Women are afraid of weight training as they think this will bulk them up. But to achieve their weight goal or general fitness it is important to include a mix of cardiovascular and weight training in your workout regimen. It’s physiologically impossible for women to gain muscle in the same way as a man because women don’t have enough testosterone in their body, unless they take supplements. Here are some benefits of weight training for women.

-Makes you physically stronger: Indulge in some weight training to be physically stronger. Lifting weights makes you stronger. Many studies have proved that even moderate weight training can increase a woman’s strength by 30-35%.

-Makes you lose weight: Cardiovascular exercise alone is not enough for weight loss. You need to include resistance training as well as weight training in your workout. Weight training increases your lean muscle mass and boosts your resting metabolism which makes you burn more calories all long the day. This helps you in reducing fat from your body.

-Gives you toned body: It is a myth that if women train with weights they will bulk up just like men. Instead of bulking, weight training gives women a more toned and defined physique. This happens because women have really low levels of testosterone in their body. This hormone is responsible for the growth of muscles.

-Makes your bone stronger: Weight training not only makes you physically stronger but also builds stronger connective tissues and increases joint stability. This reduces the chances of injury, back pain or arthritis. If you follow a healthy and balanced diet along with an effective workout routine, it can be a woman’s best defense against osteoporosis, which is a disorder of thinning of bones.

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo
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How to Increase Muscle Mass

Simple fundamental of weight lifting and strength training can help you load on quick muscle mass and lose fat from the body. The basic logic behind using heavy weights is that it provides resistance to muscle which in return makes it bigger and stronger. But  simply pumping iron is not going to get you the muscle mass. Right nutrition is equally important for the muscle gain and development.

What happens when you lift weights? The tiny muscle fibers tear accelerating the process called muscle protein synthesis. This basically means the body uses available amino acids to repair muscles and avoid further damage. This is an on going process but every exercise session takes about 48 hours to actually show. So instead of pumping weights 7 days a week you can actually minimize it to about 3-4 days a week to see good results without over-working out your body.

Muscular Man (Cr/freedigital)

Let us further explain what happens how energy is consumed during a workout session. While exercising our body takes energy from the glycogen reserves during the workouts. So more you workout your body ,the body is burning calories and using the energy reserve. After the workout the body naturally craves nutrition to replenish the used resources. So when you over train yourself then the reserves sometimes runs out of glycogen reserves. The body breaks down the protein in the muscles to get the glucose levels to normal affecting the muscle growth. This means over-working out might give you no muscle in return.

Proper diet with your exercise otherwise you might not gain the desired muscle mass. Everyone focuses on  protein, we agree they are important  but the body also requires carbohydrates to keep the glycogen levels intact, followed by fats for hormone functions. Muscle repair is not just for a few hours but continues for a longer period. Eat protein , carbohydrates and fats in through out the day to not get deficit of any nutrition.

Rest is important for the body as muscles recover during rest and require adequate time to recover and make up for the muscle wear and tear. If there is continuous muscle exertion and no rest given to the muscle then the muscle eats up its own reserves and the reverse happens. Instead of gaining muscle mass the body loses the muscle mass which is known as  catabolic state. This state also happens when you are fasting or eating very less and go without food for long time. (more…)

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo

How to Train Your Muscles

There are numerous exercise that you can workout in a gym. Each exercise is either for a specific muscle called an isolation exercise or compound exercise where multiple muscles are worked together. Which muscle should you train first or what combination of muscles should you take for more training. Training different muscles depends upon what your objective is and your approach to muscle training.

Muscular Man

There are certain number of things one should keep in mind while training his/her muscles. When lifting weights it is most important and foremost to maintain the right posture and perform the exercise in the right manner. Doing them in the wrong posture could unbalance the symmetrical growth of the muscles and could cause injuries and pain. If you are looking for muscle mass then lift more heavy weights with which you could do only 7-8 reps of the exercise. For defining and better cuts of the muscles don’t rush through your session. Change your exercise pattern at times as the body can adapt to the pattern. Rest is important as muscles require time to repair the wear and tear and increase in size and strength.

Work Bigger Muscles First: There are various combinations that you can take while building muscles. There are big muscles in the body like chest, back, thighs, abs and small muscles are biceps, forearms, shoulders, triceps etc. If you work on the small muscles first then working the bigger muscles will be straining as smaller muscles assist in training the bigger muscles. If the small muscles get tired then it will be less supportive for bigger muscles. So do the bigger muscles first and then move on to smaller one. This gives more muscle mass and density to the muscles with strength too.

Combine Opposing muscles: If you are looking to increase strength in your muscles to lift heavier weights then train opposing muscles to concentrate more on the muscles and provide them enough rest. Opposing muscles are least incorporated while doing the other muscle so its gives you time and strength to work the opposing muscles with heavier weight. This style allows you to work more muscles in a workout. Suppose you work your chest then the biceps don’t play much role in it. So it is possible to work the biceps as well with full power and weights.

Work the supporting muscles: Work out combining muscle group in one workout. The muscles that support each other. Like biceps and back. Chest and triceps etc. This helps build muscle endurance, gives better shape to the muscles.  Training supporting muscles works the bigger and small muscles as well. It gives a right combination to exhaust the muscles for better and ripped muscle mass.

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo

Best Weight Lifting Exercises

Weight Lifting builds muscles and accelerates the metabolism of the body. More muscles inthe body will result in higher metabolic rate. You can do compound exercises, means multi-joint movement exercises that work multiple muscles at one time, either by using body weight or lifting weights that have been designed to work specific muscles in the body in order to build them.

Muscular body

Weight lifting is a technique that provides resistance to the muscle to increase their mass and strength. It is one of the more popular forms of strength training that helps building the size and strength of skeletal muscles. Skeletal muscles are the voluntary muscles in our body that are attached to the bones through bundles of fiber.There are many exercise that help develop and strengthen various skeletal muscles in the body. Below is  the list of  best weight lifting exercises for different muscle groups like biceps, triceps, shoulders, chest, back, abs, quadriceps, hamstring, calves and forearms.

Best Weight Lifting Exercises

Best Weight Lifting Biceps Exercises

Barbell Curl: This is the most basic of bicep exercise where to increase its effective increase the weight with which you do not moe than 10 reps. You can do it alternately and do it with barbells for proportionate growth.

Preacher Curl: Preacher curl works the muscle in isolation and exerts stress on the muscle for increase in mas and strength. Helps work the fore arms also.

Close Grip Chin Ups: This is a great compound exercise where it requires lifting the body weight with biceps working the core as well. Build strength and stamina in the muscle.

Best Weight Lifting Triceps Exercise

Dumbbell Tricep Extension: You can do tricep extension either on the bench lying or sitting or on a decline bench. Triceps extension helps the muscle work in isolation and build triceps big.

Dips: Keep your body upright to allow maximum tension on the triceps to build power , strength and mass. You can do dips with a bench, parallel bars or by the side of your bed.

Bench Press: On of the most effective tricep exercise where you can increase tension by add extra weight. You can do bench press with dumbbells or barbells. It works the triceps and the chest also.

Best Weight Lifting Shoulders Exercise


Upright Rows: This exercise builds muscle mass and stregth and brings power to the shoulders. You can do upright rows with barbells or dumbbells.

Overhead Press: You could do overhead press with dumbbells or barbells. Overhead press is a highly effective shoulder exercise. Maintaining the right positions will build immense strength and muscle.

Lateral Raises : Lateral raises can be done with dumbbells and you could do two types of the raises. Front lateral raise for front deltoids and side lateral raise for side deltoids.

Best Weight Lifting Chest Exercise


Bench Press: It is a effective exercise for building upper body especially the chest and triceps as they exert maximum tension on them. There are many variations you can do with bench press like with dumbbells or barbells on decline, incline or flat bench. Increase weight for muscle mass.

Butterfly Machine: Butterfly machine pumps up the chest and builds big chest muscles. Cable cross over and dumbbell fly are also highly effective exercise.

Incline dumbbell Fly: Mind the posture while doing this exercise. It is a isolation exercise for chest and works for a big bulging muscular chest.

Best Weight Lifting Back Exercise

Pull Ups: One of the best back building exercise. The exercise is difficult in the beginning but gradually build endurance and strength in the core which involves the back. You can do variations with chin ups or pull ups. Do palms facing inwards, outwards, inverted chin ups and parallel grips.

Rowing: Rowing helps build overall back muscles in mass and width. You can choose between barbells and dumbbells and increase weight to increase intensity. You can do bent over row, dumbbell row or machine row.

Dead lift: It is a complete back exercise which involves power. The deadlift works the thighs, glutes and calves along with the complete back. Builds power, mass and strength and size.

Best Weight Lifting Abs Exercise

Crunches: Highly effective exercise for the rectus abdominis (6 packs). It is a beneficial exercise for beginners and works in building muscle and strength.

Hanging Leg Raises: This exercise works the entire core and involves hanging in the air while performing the exercise. It works the lower abdomin region and can be done with bent knee raises and staight knee leg raise. It buildd strength and enduarnce in the ab region.

Twist: As you need to burn fat from the sides and build oblique muscle twist exercise is a highly effective exercise for strengthening core muscles and losing fat from the sides. Tones the back and abs.

Best Weight Lifting Quadriceps Exercise

Squats: It works the front thighs, glutes and lower back. For strong lower body and and big muscles squats is highly effective. It can be done with barbells for increase in intensity. Mind the posture while doing squats.

Lunges: Maintaining a right posture and keep back straight is important while doing lunges. Exert pressure with front thighs to push body weight up and not the back. Tones the thighs, glutes, back and hips. Use dumbbels for bigger and toned muscles.

Leg Extension: This exercise is an isolation exercise for front thighs. It pumps up the thighs and helps build muscle mass and strength. One of the best exercise to build quadriceps.

Best Weight Lifting Hamstring Exercise

Romanian Dead lifts: This deadlift works the hamstring, glutes and lower back. It build muscle mass and strength in the hamstring for muscular thighs overall.

Straight Leg Dead lifts: It takes a lot of effort to do this exercise where you are supposed to keep your legs staright and not bent. Though is a compound exercise which works the calves, glutes but very effective for hamstring.

Lying Leg Curl: It is a isolation exercise completely for hamstring. Again a great exercise to build strength and muscles in the hamstring. Do it easily and properly for maximum benefits.

Best Weight Lifting Calves Exercise

Standing Calf Raise: It invoves raising your body slowly on your toes and stretching the most while at the top. Don’t jump while doing the exercise and add weights on the shoulders to increase the intensity. You can use a barbell, smith machine, hip belt, dumbbells to do variations with calf raises.

Seated Calf Raise: Concentrate on the bottom and top part while performing the exercise. Use weight to build big muscular calves. Check the momentum of the exercise and don’t hurry through.

Best Weight Lifting Forearms Exercise

Wrist Curl: This exercise works the inner forearms while it increase the width of the wrist for building muscles. It involves curling the wrist and can be done with weight for more muscle mass and strength.

Reverse Curl: This exercise works the outer forams. Usually this muscle of the forearms get missed out reducing the size of the forearms. Use weights to increase intensity of the exercise.

 

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo

Jump Start Your Workout

From now on doing proper workouts will not be a problem once you learn a few basics for workout which you should know. Understand how you can start exercising with some suggestions.

Women with dumbbells


How to start?

Divide up your time through out the day any way you want. 4-6 ten minute workouts can do the wonders (more…)

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo

Fire Up Your Metabolism

Firstly we need to understand what metabolism is and how it affects weight loss . Metabolism is the amount of energy (calories) your body burns to maintain normal functioning. Whether you are eating, drinking, sleeping, cleaning etc. your body is constantly burning calories to keep you going.

Metabolism is affected by your body composition i.e, the amount of muscle mass you have versus the amount of fat. Muscle uses more calories to maintain itself than fat. People who are more muscular (and have a lower percentage of body fat) are said to have a higher metabolism than those with less muscle mass. If you exercise on a regular basis with weights,coupled with aerobic exercises(and have a lower percentage of body fat), your metabolic rate will always be higher than someone who does not exercise at all. The reason is that even during rest, an individual with higher muscle mass to fat ratio will burn more calories that someone with a lower muscle mass to fat ration. 

As you begin to age, your metabolism has a natural tendency to start slowing down. There are some easy to follow, simple tricks that can help you eliminate body fat, improve your flab-burning metabolic process, and kick start your weight loss even before you start exercising.

Here are some easy tips to change you into a fat burning machine

Stop Dieting and Start Exercising

It isn’t about eating less, it’s about eating more nutrition-dense food, to keep you full all day long. Restricting food will kill your metabolism or slow it down. It makes our body think that its starving and puts it into famine or survival mode. The body responds by slowing down the metabolism in order to slowly spend the existing energy.
This means that your body starts to consume less calories and store more.

Build some Muscles

Rev up your metabolism by doing some resistance exercises like weightlifting, hand lifting etc. Also, decrease body fat by doing some aerobic exercises like swimming, cycling, jogging, dancing, walking. Muscle uses more calories to maintain itself than fat does, thus increasing metabolism or calorie burn.

Go to Bed Early

A research suggests that people who had insufficient sleep and were under more stress had more body fat than people who had sufficient sleep.

Eat Protein Rich Food

The faster your metabolism is, the more fat you burn and the slower your metabolism is, the more fat you will store. Eating protein is a good way to increase metabolism, especially since the body burns more calories to digest protein than it does digesting carbs or sugars.


Go Organic Whenever Possible

The accumulation of toxins in the body slows down the metabolism because the body has to work extra hard to eliminate these toxins on a daily basis. So going on a organic diet leads to less toxins in the body in the form of pesticides. Going the organic way is always a healthier option.

Get Up and Move a Little

Sitting or standing at work may play a big  role in your health and waistline. Researchers suggest that inactivity for 4 hours or more causes a slowdown in an enzyme that controls fat and cholesterol metabolism. Stand up from your desk and walk around the office, go up and down the stairs a few times. If you use these little bursts of energy throughout the day then your metabolism will stay revved up and you’ll keep burning more calories.

Drink Cold Water

Researchers found that drinking 1 liter of cold water a day can raise resting metabolism by about 50 calories daily. The increase may come from the work it takes to heat the water to body temperature. Start drinking cold water to accelerate your metabolism by up to 30%.

Eat Some Hot Food

Eating hot food can also fire up your metabolism. Eating red or green chilies boosts your body’s production of heat and the activity of your sympathetic nervous system (responsible for our fight-or-flight response). If they’re hot enough they’ll rev your metabolism into higher levels and you’ll break a sweat!

Dont Skip Breakfast and have small meals through the day

Eating breakfast jump-starts metabolism and keeps energy high all day. Eat often because that will keep your metabolism pumping all day long, and when you eat many small meals through the day, it puts less burden on your digestive system and lets it work more efficiently.

Drink Coffee or Tea

Women metabolize caffeine about 25 percent faster than men. Metabolic rate remains highest during the first three hours post caffeine consumption. Caffeine is a stimulant that increases heart rate and mental acuity. While the blood pumps faster, the metabolic rate increases. According to research, tea can increase your metabolism by 12%. Researchers believe that the antioxidant catechins present in tea, provide the  boost.

Fight Fat with Fiber

Fiber can raise your fat burn by about 30 percent. Research has found that those who eat the more fiber gain the least weight over time. Aim for about  three servings each of fruits and vegetables every day. Fiber leads to lower calorie intake which lessens the calorie count.

Eat Iron-Rich Foods

Iron is essential for carrying the oxygen your muscles need to burn fat. Unless you consistently consume iron, you will have a slower metabolism. Lean meats, beans and spinach are excellent sources. Get this essential mineral in natural doses from real foods.


Drink Milk

There’s some evidence that calcium deficiency may slow metabolism. Research shows that consuming calcium in dairy foods such as fat-free milk and low-fat yogurt may also reduce fat absorption from other foods.

Dont Get Stressed

Research says that being stressed out creates high levels of a hormone called cortisol in your body, which leads to belly fat . Relax and let go off the extra kilos!

Stay Hydrated

All of our body’s basic reactions, including our metabolism, depend on water. If you are dehydrated, you may be burning less calories, according to researchers. In the study, those who drank more water everyday had higher metabolic rates than those who had drank less.

Eat metabolism boosting foods like Apple, spinach, tomatoes, cabbage, papaya, broccoli, green leafy vegetables, pineapple, grapefruit, lemon, garlic, onions, mangoes, cucumber, cauliflower, carrots and avocados. These  fruits and vegetables belong to the negative calorie list of foods that will help you boost your metabolism.

— this article is written by a dietitian @ FitHo