Being fit is ensuring your lifestyle remains healthy, stress free, and active. I have tried to be inclusive of many forms of fitness during my lifetime to bring harmony and destress from my frustrations. Fitness has been a way to indulge in allowing me to feel not only good about myself and my body, but also maintain a healthy outlook mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Fitness is very conducive to brain power. The brain needs to be exercised. Not just with numbers, games, and written words. It needs to be physically embraced with fitness of swimming, gymnastics, cycling, spinning, sport climbing, jogging, volleyball, basketball, and kayaking. I’m not going to infuse football here, because of the damage it can cause the brain when hit. Concussions are a leading factor for traumatic brain injuries and CTE. This, of course, is unfortunate for those whom have suffered the consequences of such a devastating outcome. Therefore, I hesitate to put football as a healthy fitness sport of sort. Yet, if that is your choice of fitness, you do know the health risks that come with playing it.
When you think about the number of ways we can use our minds and meditate while physically using our bodies, we are releasing certain healthy endorphins to create a runner’s “high”, which is when our bodies go from aerobic to anaerobic exertion. This phase of release is when our brains are at our most highest state of performance, as the body is operating without the endurance oxygen, so the cells in our muscles are literally on overdrive….This is when our minds get their “high” and want to keep going for more!
“Exercise stimulates endorphin production as well, but for a different reason. You’re probably familiar with the term “runner’s high,” which refers to the euphoric feeling one sometimes gets when exercising. Researchers have found that light-to-moderate weight training or cardiovascular exercise doesn’t produce endorphins, only heavy weights or training that incorporates sprinting or other anaerobic exertion.
When your body crosses over from an aerobic state to an anaerobic state, it’s suddenly operating without enough oxygen to satisfy the muscles and cells screaming out for it. This is when the “runner’s high” occurs.” Science, How Stuff Works
Thus, I have offered here some ways to release stress, frustrations, and mental chaos. Find those fitness opportunities that bring joy, excitement, peace, harmony, and feelings of energy. Whatever makes you happy inside out is what you should be doing in fitness and health. YOU MATTER!! Don’t wait until tomorrow to start. Today is really all we have…! Just DO IT! 🙂 Happy training my beautiful souls!💋
HEALTHY FITNESS HABITS
Due to technological multitasking on email, voice mail, texting, Skyping, and other virtual ways of communicating with others, our minds are constantly fueled with incoming traffic, whether personal, professional, technological, or virtual. Life is a series of good and negative stress. Therefore, it is important to listen carefully to your body, thoughts, and biofeedback. As your limitations reach their peak and your plate becomes overwhelmed, you may feel frustrated, confused, and/or you may feel the need to release repressed tension. Harmony is very important to maintain if we are to strive for rational and critical thinking during highly stressful and energy draining positions. This can be accomplished through different types of activities including yoga, meditation, swimming, kayaking, jogging, hiking, walking, cycling, and/or sport climbing. Fitness, obviously, is an important part of your daily health routine to keep the heart functioning at maximum potential to decrease blood pressure, lower the risk of heart attacks, stroke, and diabetes. So many wonderful exercises are attributed to enjoying the outdoors and breathing in the fresh air. There truly is a connection between body, mind and spirit, and when balanced and grounded, one can be more focused, present, and recharged.
COVID 19 has forced the fitness industry to change how it designs and engages its customers in order to bring positivity, glow, and mindfulness back to front and center. Healthy fitness choices have become the apex of mental health for people currently during this intense time of isolation, loneliness, and depression. Mental health is our number one focus in making home fitness the catalyst for keeping people connected, engaged, and at optimum wellness. Whether through television, zoom, iPhone, iPad, Skype, or other form of technology that makes fitness fun and enjoyable, delivering workout solutions even via outdoors is the wave of the future. Living a healthy lifestyle is not just a choice, but a requirement for today’s healthy survival.
And what works for one person may not work for you. Flexibility in trying new fitness options and integrating the latest tech to benefit from a more personalized approach can bring a more rounded and unique experience depending on your fitness and holistic goals. Whatever your motivation is for fine tuning your body, whether long term health and wellness goals, installing tech into fitness routines, or starting over after injuries, there are some exciting trends in the fitness world for 2021 to keep you focused, motivated, and energized.
1. STREAMING SERVICES TO DELIVER WORKOUT HIGHS
The nine fitness trends to look for in 2021 echoed how the home gym has become the number one trend of the future in fitness. Streaming services is the wave and key to connecting devices through televisions, Zoom, iPads, iPhones, Smartphones, or other technological advancements for creating a studio experience for participants and their instructors. People need a sense of fulfillment and by accomplishing a group activity with other spinning riders, yoga participants, and/or zoom members, they can connect and have a comaraderie experience as if they were still at a gym. This offers fitness accountability for showing up and keeps you committed to your fitness goals. It is truly a win-win for all.
As a second trend, in pursuit of the home gym, Dr. Shawna Harrison shared with Self Magazine that people are investing with varied fitness equipment to make space in order to forgo using the paid membership gym at all. It’s less expensive and the digitally inclined workouts are easier to revolve around one’s own schedule. They also include classes with Peleton platforms along with others who have joined in to compete with them, such as MYXX, Echelon, Mirror, Tempo and others who offer premium workouts from the comfort of your own living room. In this digital age, people are expecting to interface with a high performance interactive machine that offers multiple levels of classes and platforms that can be used by the entire family.
Health and wellness coaching is a third trend and spoke to the importance of nutrition. It plays a critical role in how our bodies function. Wellness is symbiotic with nutrition. What we eat is who we are, literally. Our bodies can only function in direct correlation to what we feed it.
Part of the draw of a healthy lifestyle, besides the radiant feeling from exercising for strength, body shaping, and inner glow, is also the keen awareness knowing you are living and training like an athlete. This psychological transformation is what drives the need for the “high” while training, and gives your mind the endorphins that manifest the feelings of needing more. Hence, a physio-psychological cycle is created and desired for seeking a habitual training routine, one that perpetuates healthy eating and trained fitness recovery in ways of maintaining a healthy lifestyle balance. So, finding a way to stay fit in today’s society is not challenging, expensive, nor difficult to achieve. YOU are the only reason YOU ARE NOT FIT!! CHANGE YOUR MIND, CHANGE YOUR LIFE!
One of the latest trends today is shuffling and hopping on the feet while hitting a bag, known more familiarly as Boxing. More people, even stars, models, and those athletes in training are finding themselves in the new venues of places such as Rumble. What’s great about hitting a bag is that you can set one up at home if you can’t get to the gym and do so with home video programs specialized with kickboxing programs included. And when people can’t hit a bag, they can do it at home with programs like Daily Burn’s Undefeated kickboxing program. One reason boxing is the knock-out workout of the year, purports Sandy Todd Webster, editor in chief of the IDEA Fitness Journal, says, “We’re all living with an incredible amount of stress in our lives. Having the opportunity to air punch forcefully at a bag while using the spinning force of our full bodies is quite the release for stress, frustrations, and repressed feelings.
Many of the well known boxing studios are now offering the experience of training like a true boxer, using strength training and components of body conditioning in each program. In this way, your body builds flexibility, recovery, and gets the benefits of performance. As explained by Rick Richey, MS, LMT, NASM-certified trainer, “Exercise can seem boring when only focusing on physiological outcomes, but sports conditioning classes provide us with performance-based outcomes that make the exercises more engaging and fun.”
2. FUNCTIONAL TRAINING
Functional training, enhances your strength of movement patterns that we do in daily activities, such as pushing, pulling, squatting, bending, lifting, etc. Thus, to keep the body free of injury, it’s critical to ensure these movements are strengthened through a regimented fitness program that focuses on these baseline movements. “If you’re going to live a healthy, active and injury-free life, functional training needs to be the baseline for everything else you do,” comments Sandy Webster.
Using barbells for functional training has become more engaging due to their ability to condition and strengthen muscles. But McCall states that, “We’ll see a re-birth in using medicine balls, resistance bands and plyometric training.” On the other hand, Richey comments, “There will likely be an uptick in weightlifting, Olympic lifting and kettlebell classes that focus on building strength.” The Sports & Fitness Industry Association 2017 expressed, the use of barbells rose 4.3 percent last year and kettebells 3.2 percent.
3. REVVED-UP RECOVERY
Based on the past premise that intense workouts are best, like CrossFit training, daily heavy cardio routines, and muscle work outs that keep the muscles “burning” and exhausted, this year will be different. It’s focus will concentrate more on recovery and slowing down. “Instead of killing ourselves with extremely intense workouts seven days a week, we’ll see more intelligent programming that includes recovery,” McCall says. “High-intensity workouts are just one part of the equation for better performance. The other half is recovery,” he explains. Yet, recovery is a concept most people addicted to daily training haven’t mastered yet. It’s allowing the muscles to repair themselves in order to be stronger and more conditioned for the next training session. Overworking your muscles depletes them of nutrients, stretches them beyond capacity, and causes injuries. Webster notes, “Recovery is multifaceted and includes taking short breaks from exercise, active rest, myofascial release, sleep…they’re all a huge part of overall health.”
4. GOING HOT OR COLD…
Another chilling type of post workout recovery that has made a come back is cryotherapy. Those supporters of cryotherapy purport how sub-freezing temps enhance muscle recovery by constricting blood vessels in order to reduce inflammation. Hence, as a post workout session, the benefits of using cryotherapy are improved blood flow and reduced pain overall. McCall states, “Cryotherapy is something you see more professional athletes who train at a high level doing,”
On the other side of the coin, heat, increases the flow of blood and oxygen, helping to repair damaged tissue—which can make it a better choice for older or chronic problems. “When it comes to acute pain, inflammation, and swelling, ice tends to win out,” says Dr. Rex. Cold slows the blood flow to an injury, reducing pain and swelling. Heat, on the other hand, increases the flow of blood and oxygen, helping to repair damaged tissue—which can make it a better choice for older or chronic problems. “For an injury that’s older than six weeks, heat may help restart the healing process,” says Evie Vlahakis, a physical therapist in New York City.
Consequently, other fitness studios are finding heat as better suited to ease pain and decrease stress for post sessions as well, by using infrared saunas and sauna sesh post-workouts. Richey, who is opening his own recovery facility in early 2018, says, “There’s a lot of theoretical reasoning and rational, but little empirical research [about these recovery methods].” Once science starts catching up with the trends, that will all change, he says. “Research in fitness is often not pioneering. Research tries to measure, validate and quantify outcomes of what is already being done in the field.”
5. EXERCISE IN 3D
In 2018, basic yoga studios may no longer exist, as they as going virtually 3D in their experiential reality check of the senses. They are literally immersing you with live experiences of sound baths and spin studios trying to leverage virtual reality into their classes. Sandy Webster concurs, “Change and experimentation are inevitable in an industry with super creative minds, and necessary to keep offerings dynamic for exercisers who want to stay motivated through change.” These immersive experiences also provide perspective on how to use fitness to overcome life’s challenges. Webster says. “The instructor takes you on an amazing journey through imagery, storytelling, varied tempos and inspiring music.”
Daily Burn’s scope on future trends with virtual reality yoga practices share their findings thus far….This year, we saw FlyWheel and ClassPass expand their businesses online with live streaming workouts, joining the likes of Daily Burn and Peloton. “I think this is the next generation of exercise DVDs. Some people just prefer to work out in the comfort of their own homes,” Webster says. McCall says this is also another way for trainers to connect with their clients when they can’t make it to the gym. “It will be interesting to see how people start to re-create a live experience. We’re going to see how technology can change fitness,” McCall says. In addition, Boutiques have started popping up in smaller cities, like Cincinnati, Boston, and Austin to make way for enhanced workouts of yoga at Crossfit Studios and stretching classes at one’s most popular HIIT venue.
Yet, my beautiful souls, if you would rather experience yoga on the beach with the waves creating their own natural sequences of tranquility, or on the rocks out in an exclusive far away locale for meditation and the peacefulness of silence, don’t hesitate to abandon the studios and be one with nature… ✨
6. HOME & PERSONALIZED WORK OUTS
Basically, the home work out is finding the latest and greatest work out DVDs to exercise to without leaving the comfort of your home. There are pluses and minuses to this based on your ability to maintain a regular habitual workout schedule without the support of friends or a trainer that enlists your time at the gym to support your goals. Many individuals require structure, a partner, and/or a support mechanism to keep them goal oriented to be successful in their fitness endeavors. Daily Burn, it seems, has joined forces with other business partners, such as FlyWheel, ClassPass, and Peloton, who are expanding their businesses with live online streaming of intense workouts. “I think this is the next generation of exercise DVDs. Some people just prefer to work out in the comfort of their own homes,” Webster says. McCall says this is also another way for trainers to connect with their clients when they can’t make it to the gym. “It will be interesting to see how people start to re-create a live experience. We’re going to see how technology can change fitness,” McCall says.
7. MINDFUL MOVEMENT
It is no secret that meditation is beneficial. In 2014, research concluded how meditation lead to activation in parts of the brain involving processing, self-regulation, critical thinking, and adaptive behavior.(1) Meditation has been found to be the antidote to those who are over stimulated and frantically multi-tasking. It’s almost as though meditation is the antidote to an over-stimulated, go-go-go mindset. And, those who are on-the-go, over-stressed people would much rather incorporate HIIT (high intensity interval training) workouts than remain still.
Infusing meditation in pre and post workout classes is has enhanced Nike Master Trainer, Holly Rilinger’s Lifted classes, for instance. Yet, combining meditation into other forms of workouts during 2018 will be the new trend predicts McCall. “We’re going to see mindful movement as part of strength training to improve cognitive function and mental acuity,” he says. What we envision are workout apps and audio workouts with five-minute meditations. Webster explains, “Since we’re constantly glued to our screens, meditation can give us the headspace we need to truly focus on the push-up at hand. If it’s five minutes before or after a class of guided meditation, it might be the only personal quiet time a person gets all day.”
8. BREATH WORK
Now that we have learned to be more aware and present, what other inner types of meditation offers our bodies and minds stress reduction and mind centered focus? This is when learning how to breath correctly during breathing classes and while during intense workout routines is critical. Classes offering meditation may also infuse breathing techniques as part of their flow. The Valsalva maneuver is a method used in many weightlifting workouts.
Breathing properly allows the muscles to receive proper oxygen to them in order to sustain their constant motion without injury. Breathing in before a lift and then holding it while you lift is critical. Exhaling as you release the weight gives proper focus on making your movements slow, isolated, and without injury. Breathing should come from below your ribs, not up high in your lungs. When you have deep breathing, your lower stomach will show being inflated when you inhale and exhale. If you have short breaths, they will be high up in your lungs and will not offer you the necessary breathing endurance necessary for fitness cardio and intense workouts.
As sleeping patterns for tracking deep sleep and REM timelines become more available with fitbit and smartphone watch devices, among others, it is important to realize that good sleep is important to a healthy lifestyle. Sleeping between eight to ten hours per night is a capstone for your body’s vital motor functions and energy. Sleep restores back your body’s physical well being, athletic performance, mental alertness, concentration, and positivity towards the day’s scheduled activities. If not rested properly, the body’s immune system suffers, the brain becomes fogged and easily distracted, while the rest of the motor functions are stunted and lack energy. Kat Ellis, certified personal trainer, instructor at Our Body Electric, sees in the near future sleep coaches becoming readily available at yoga and meditation studios in order to assist people to learn the art of deep relaxation.
Emily Lockhart, author of the article on Sleep Deprivation in Active Beat, purports that sleep deprivation, being a chronic lack of sleep, can cause chronic conditions, such a high blood pressure, arrhythmia, diabetes, and cardiovascular problems. She also advises, it increases the stress hormone cortisol in your body, which has a way of showing up as puffy, dark circles under your eyes, and leaves your skin rather stretchy and dull. Loss of sleep may also come in forms of depression, wight gain or loss, lack of libido, and decreased mental acuity.
If stress, frustration, or negative circumstances are causing you to loose sleep, find a life coach, therapist, or psychologist you connect with who can assist you in dealing with your emotions and issues that block your sleep patterns. This is one of the most important steps to having an awesome workout regardless of the type you choose! Don’t wait until its too late!! Just DO IT!!
Please read more about the benefits of Sleep under the Tab: Healthy Lifestyle -“Nutrition and Sleep”.
“We are distracted by our screens and devices 24/7,” Webster says. “Emphasis on being more present and mindful in our lives — for however long we can manage — is an important way to regroup with yourself.”
🌸This concludes my Healthy Fitness Habits section for developing harmony and healthy habits to destress and release toxins out of your life. I sincerely hope you indulge in the benefits of the fitness programs that have been made available to you. Obviously, there are so many ways to be inclusive of nutritiously sound eating habits as well to stay fit, yet finding the resources takes incredible amounts of time, energy, and expense to you. I want to encourage all my tribal members to seek the best in yourself, and find ways to live a healthy, fit life, especially after trauma or abuse. Find a partner, if possible, who can assist you in reaching your goals, and focus on YOU!! Always remember how remarkable YOU are no matter what other people may think or say to you. This is about YOUR JOURNEY!! Let me know how I can assist you in making your goals in living a healthy and healthy lifestyle come true…✨
💫In Love and Light,
Kimberly Lees, Ed.D.