How to fit exercise into your busy schedule 0 31943

Making the decision to start exercising is always easy. You just make up your mind, say the words, and you’re done, right? Finding the time to exercise, however, is the hard part in making such a commitment. Integrating a workout schedule into your daily life is never an easy task. Some people cannot give up all that time, their day is already packed as it is, and they simply don’t have the extra time to do squats or crunches like other people.

So, how do you find the extra time to do all that exercising?

It’s quite simple: you make the extra time or manage your time better.

Here are a few tips to squeeze extra time so that you can get in your day’s workout:

Wake up earlier

This tip is obvious. Waking up earlier will definitely give you more time to fit in your morning exercise, surely you can sacrifice 30 minutes of beauty sleep.

Thirty minutes is sometimes not sufficient for those with experience. They need more time to cover all the exercises that an extensive workout entails, and having realized this, they usually do one of two things.

Wake up earlier to get more time to exercise or incorporate a HIIT (high intensity interval training) workout into your workout regimen. A HIIT workout entails several exercises done in quick succession with very minimal rest time between each repetition. It’s an effective way to squeeze your workout into those 30 minutes. HIIT workouts are not only more effective, they also save you lots of time. As effective as HIIT can be, they must be chosen with great care, as the process is quite delicate. Consult a fitness expert before you construct your HIIT workout.

The extra thirty minutes that you’ve added to your day will give you that extra time that’ll help you stick to your regimen without distorting your schedule.

Multi-tasking

This is a rather unorthodox approach to working out, but it can be just as effective. Sticking to an exercise method like multi-tasking requires a great deal of flexibility. Multi-tasking is basically sneaking in a few minutes of exercise into your already tight schedule.

Instead of driving to work, you could run or cycle to work. That way you’ll be making the most out of your normally unproductive trip to work. The trip could be an effective way to trim down or hit that workout goal you set for yourself.

Multi-tasking is not limited to a trip to work, you could also workout while at your desk by getting a desk treadmill or a gym ball.

Spare time utilization

Our weekends are usually flooded with so many activities and chores that we never seem to get any time to exercise. We see it as the time to chill out and pay more attention to the family, or hang out with a boyfriend, or run some errands. Although your weekend might be equally as packed as your weekdays, you could still make the best use of the potential free time you could come across during this time. Saturday and Sunday mornings are generally free for the most part. It could be that time you decide to hit the gym or do some HIIT exercises.

The weekend could be a lot more than just extra time to catch up with all the extra work or chores, you could also go a couple of sets on your dumbbells if you have them or go for run.

Working out at home

Working out at home can save you tons of time by making exercise more fun and less stressful. We all know going to the gym can be time-consuming. The drive to the gym alone could cost you time than you have. And then when you add other time-consuming tasks like, changing in and out of your gym clothes and showering twice, two to three hours are gone for a single visit to the gym. It would be smarter to workout from home. I understand that the gym is better stocked with equipment and professionals, but if your goal is to shed weight, there are a lot of home equipment like pull-ups bars and jump ropes that can help you do just that.

Integrating exercise into your social life

Your social life is no doubt one part of your life that takes up a lot your time. A dinner with a date, an afternoon luncheon, or other social activities could be made more productive. Activities like picnics and dates can be altered to fit into your newly adopted lifestyle. Instead of going for walks with a spouse, you could go for a run. Or a casual trip with the kids to the park, could be changed to cycling in the park instead. A picnic could be changed into a hike or something fun.

Taking up exercising doesn’t have to be difficult. Exercising can perfectly fit into your life without disrupting it. Social events can be made more fun filled and productive.

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What are nootropics? 0 70456

Nootropics, according to Corneliu E. Giurgea, the father of nootropics, are drugs that simultaneously enhance learning and memory, protect the brain, increase the efficacy of brain-related control mechanisms, should lack the pharmacologic structure of psychotropic drugs, and be devoid of side effects. Over time, the description has been expanded to include other non-drug substances.

Whether or not drugs are involved, the idea of nootropics is that they boost mental capacity, allowing you to accomplish goals that would be quite strenuous without them. They are used by various individuals, ranging from students wanting to get more studying done or turning in a paper on time, to engineers trying to figure out a problem.

What are nootropics made of?

Nootropics are traditionally made of naturally-occurring substances like ginseng, or synthetic substances in the form of chemicals not uncommon in drugs (like L-Theanine). Even though Corneliu Giurgea’s description referred to drugs, nootropics have evolved to include non-synthetic substances that can give similar outputs. Nootropics are sometimes called “smart drugs”.

Various nootropics

The large range of nootropics make it difficult to describe them with a blanket sentence other than “they boost brain performance”. So, instead of a generalization, here is a short list of popular nootropics, as well as their specific actions, and possible side effects.

1. Caffeine: Caffeine is without-a-doubt the most popular nootropic, being present in most nootropic substances available on the market. It’s effective in wakefulness, improved concentration, increased motivation, alertness, and focus.

The side effects of caffeine are as well-known as its usefulness. Excessive consumption of caffeine causes insomnia, nervousness, restlessness, tachycardia (elevated heart rate), and even muscle tremors.

2. L-Theanine: Unlike Guarana, L-Theanine is an amino acid that can be found in many tea leaves and herbs. It’s known to aid stress relief and reduce anxiety. Even though is also taken to increase focus and attention, stress relief is its most evidence-based function.

Its side effects may include nausea and irritability.

3. CPD Choline: CPD Choline is naturally-occurring in humans and animals and is an intermediate substance in a common biochemical process that involves converting Choline to Phosphaatidylcholine. Studies show that CPD protects the brain, especially in times of low oxygen supply. In addition, it also increases alertness and consciousness.

Being a natural substance in the body, CPD has no negative effects, except when it is taken in excess, where it can cause stomachaches and diarrhea.

4. Modafinil: As far as performance-boosting drugs go, Modafinil tops the list, having been shown to increase fatigue resistance, improve mood, as well as increase motivation and vigilance. It really is a wonder drug, often rumored to be used by sleep-deprived doctors.

Its side effects are abuse-induced, which means you may suffer things like chronic headaches, if you use it all the time to fight fatigue, without getting enough sleep.

5. Guarana: Guarana, also called Guaranine, is a plant with well-researched and documented effects of improved mental focus and alertness. It is also taken for various other purposes from weight loss to exercise tolerance, but these have not been proven.

Being a naturally-occurring fruit, it does not have severe side effects. However, users have been known to experience insomnia and fatigue when taken in high doses.

6. Panax Ginseng: Certain herbs are sometimes assumed to have positive, even performance-enhancing effects. One of the most popular is Ginseng. Common in East Asia and North America, the plant does not have any nootropic effects backed by strong scientific evidence. However, it has been said to increase energy levels and activity.

Ginseng does not have any known side effects.

7.Ginkgo Biloba: Also a leaf extract, it is wildly known as a cognitive enhancer, with weak scientific evidence to support it.

8. Vitamin B12: The controversy surrounding vitamin B12 is that it may not be a nootropic, as it does not have any noticeable, quick-onset effects. It is considered more of supplement and nutritional requirement than a nootropic. However, it’s on this list because some people still consider it a smart drug.

Nootropic tolerance

Overuse of many nootropics can lead to your body building tolerance, and needing more and more of the substance to get the same effect. It’s a little like what happens with regular alcohol drinkers. They often need more and more alcohol to feel its effects.

Things to remember about nootropics

Many individuals have their definition of nootropics, thus making it a controversial topic. The situation is made worse by substances that are claimed to boost productivity but have not yet been proven. Amongst all these controversies, here are some points for you to keep in mind about nootropics:

  1. They are performance-boosting substances and are often used to get an extra edge.
  2. They should be free of side effects, and should have low toxicity.
  3. They contain naturally-occurring substances.
  4. They work by interacting with receptors in the brain.
  5. Even though they are supposed to be side effect free, some supposed nootropics do have side effects.
  6. Some substances considered nootropics work, and some don’t.
  7. The adverse effects of nootropics can sometimes be avoided by keeping dosage low and cycling between usage and abstinence.

5 Yoga moves to add to your daily stretching today 0 53386

Introduction

It’s no surprise that the practice of yoga has grown in popularity over the last couple of decades. It has several benefits like core strengthening and improved flexibility. However, yoga has several poses and positions that can get a little confusing when choosing what poses to do to achieve your goals. Whether you are just starting out, or are looking to raise the bar during your yoga, this is the post for you.

A brief history on the origin of yoga

Modern yoga as we know it is a combination of different poses and forms, evolved over centuries and modified by different practitioners. Take the first ever recorded instance of yoga, which dates as far back as the 2nd century which, although it was not clearly described as yoga, involved a sitting posture described to require a steady form and comfort. The form was assumed for meditation, not unlike what we have today. In about the 11th century, there was a description of a non-seated pose in which the practitioner balances on the hands. As the centuries passed, yoga became more evolved, and more adapted to modern cultures like ours.

Simple forms

Even though yoga has changed over the years, there are simple poses that have remained relatively constant through the ages, retaining their simplicity and form.

Here are 5 of those simple forms that can be incorporated into your daily routine

  1. Lotus Position: The lotus is one of the most fundamental positions in yoga, with a long history like we discussed. The lotus has a special position among all the stretches and positions not just because it is the oldest, but also because it is key to meditation, which is a big part of yoga.

To enter the sitting position:

  • Sit on the mat with your legs and your back straight
  • Fold your legs so that your feet now rest under your thigh as you relax and let your feet rest comfortably on the floor.
  1. Cow position: The cow position is also a relatively easy position to attain. It is especially good for stretching and relaxing the back muscles as it involves stretching the vertebrae (back bone) and the spinal muscles.

To perform the cow position,

  • Start by kneeling on all fours (hands directly beneath shoulders, and knees directly beneath the hips)
  • Breath in and turn your head upwards as if to look at the ceiling, forming an upward facing curve with your back (the hollow facing upwards)
  • Breath out and return to the neutral position
  • Repeat as necessary
  1. Child Position: The child pose is different from the cow position, only because it stretches the back in the opposite direction, as well as the neck, arms, and legs. It also tones and strengthens the core muscles, giving a mild general body stretch. The child pose is especially good in situations where you don’t have a lot of time during the session. It is a great pose for stretching a lot of areas at once.

To enter the child position:

  • Kneel on all fours like in the cow position
  • Lower your hips so your thighs touch your calves
  • Lean forward, and extend your arms so your elbow and hands touch the mat
  • Maintain the position for the desired length of time
  • Repeat
  1. Bridge pose: So named because of the way the body resembles a bridge when done correctly. The bridge position can be considered the opposite of the child’s pose because here, the back is active and extended, with the hips and knees flexed and bearing most of the body’s weight. The bridge is good for stretching the abdominal muscles and the thighs.

To enter the bridge position:

  • Lie flat on your back and bend your knees
  • With your bent knees, elevate your body so your buttocks and lower back lift off the mat
  • Bring your arms forward so they are positioned directly beneath your body
  • Be sure to keep your upper back and head on the mat during the pose
  • Hold for as long as necessary and repeat as desired
  • Repeat
  1. Locust Position: The locust position is an intermediate level position, because of the core strength it requires to execute. It is very similar to the “superman” in resistance training. While the superman is for strength building, the locust is for stretching and relaxation. It concentrates on the arms, legs and upper back.

To enter the locust position:

  • Lie on your chest with your arms and legs stretched out on the mat
  • Lift your legs from the hip off the mat, while simultaneously lifting your head, arms, and upper chest
  • Maintain the position for the desired length of time
  • Repeat

Incorporate these stretches and positions into your daily routine to increase strength, flexibility, and improve inner-peace. Let us know what you think!

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