The Secrets of Whole Body Vibration

How Effective is Whole Body Vibration for Weight Loss?

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From pills, to diets, to machines, quick weight-loss methods attract more people seeking easy solutions than the proven “eat less, move more” programs. However, for people with significant weight problems, who suffer from heart disease, diabetes and musculoskeletal problems related to obesity, there isn’t a simple solution to weight loss.

Over the last 40 years, researchers in Europe and the US have been developing technology that may improve muscle tone, flexibility and balance, all of which are essential to good health. Whole body vibration platform machines, such as the Power PlateTM or GForce Power Vibe, are being touted as the total body workout machines that use vibration to change the way you exercise.

The Science Behind the Whole Body Vibration Machine

Astronauts began to suffer muscle atrophy after living in zero gravity forces. Their muscles were weakened because they weren’t challenged by their mass, so they didn’t have much force. Russians researched ways to battle muscle atrophy and increase bone density and circulation while rehabilitating cosmonauts to Earth’s gravity. They found a solution in which they could cause the weakened muscles to contract without using weight.
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Stretching in Your Third Trimester

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Staying Active In Your Third Trimester

You’re inevitably going to feel much different in your third trimester than your first. With the baby growing, the body starts to feel a bit more compressed (and the bathroom stops seem to be constant). You’ll find that your exercise habits change, too. Whereas I was running early on in my pregnancy, by the third trimester it was walking in the pool!

You may have heard that you should take it slow or even stop exercising, especially around 32 weeks. However, if you have been active all of your pregnancy, then your placenta has adapted and is very good at capturing nutrients to fuel the body and fetus. Moms who have continued to exercise throughout their pregnancy have been shown to give birth to fit babies versus obese ones.

So my advice is to keep moving. Do be sure to check in with yourself each day and honor where you are. If you feel up for strengthening but 10 minutes in you’re exhausted, then focus on stretching. If you start with an easy routine but start to feel energized, then maybe add some core or strengthening exercises into the mix.

Remember that labor is just that labor… it is work. Strength, endurance, and flexibility are helpful. Even if you are planning on a C-section, post-delivery strength and endurance is of the upmost importance for preventing injuries in the post-partum period. Injuries? Yeah, think of all the lifting and carrying of strollers, car seats, babies, etc.

Here is a gentle stretching routine for when you feel a little tired.
Please note with all exercise programs and implementation, clearance from a MD is advisable.

Stretching Routine

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Slim Down for Spring: Week 1

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Trim Down In Time For The Spring Season

The warmer weather is a great reason to rev up your workouts to and keep you looking fit and fabulous! Feeling better about yourself will also reinvigorate your confidence as the warm weather approaches.

The Slim Down For Spring series is a 2-week workout for Total Gym users that is designed to move quickly, at a moderate to high intensity. Week 1 will focus on abs, arms, and cardio and Week 2 will focus on toning your stomach and butt. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday will be the circuits, with Tuesday and Thursday dedicated to slimming cardio (more on that later).

If you’re really loving your results and want more, there will be an bonus week 3 that is a combination of the entire series. I will walk you through this during week 2’s video.

Slimming Cardio

Including essential cardio into your Slim Down program is a vital part of your big picture health. The cardio selection and timing per session will differ for each individual. You can do your favorite cardio workout, such as power walking or running outside, biking, playing sports, the treadmill, swimming, burpees, or on your Total Gym. Anything that will get your heart rate up!

The more cardio sessions you put in, the faster you will feel the results. Lastly, add variety to your cardio sessions by changing the activity performed, the intensity of the session, and the duration each day. This will keep your muscles guessing, your mind entertained, and your body motivated to accomplish your fitness goals!

The Slim Down Workout: Abs, Arms & Action (Cardio) Exercises

Warm-up with the same exercises each workout.
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4 Rules of Food Combining

How to Eat for Maximum Nutrient Absorption and Proper Digestion

combining-foods

It never ceases to amaze me how certain people can take information and turn it into hype and the latest trend in eating or weight management. Gluten free is the perfect example. It is no secret that ‘gluten free foods’ are everywhere and even food that would never have gluten in it anyway are marketed “GLUTEN FREE.” This is really a result of various companies and people taking advantage of a trend. Nothing can be further than the truth. Sure, some people cannot digest gluten, but certainly not EVERYONE is suddenly intolerant to gluten. Several years ago it was fashionable to combine certain foods together, promoting weight loss and more energy. The reality is that food combining is very serious and YES, certain foods should NEVER be eaten together, but you need to understand why!

According to the American Dietetic Association, it doesn’t matter how we combine our foods, as long as we eat proteins, carbohydrates and some fat at each meal. This philosophy is dumbfounding and unscientific. I have many clients that come to see me questioning the fact that they have listened to everything their dietician had prescribed, yet are suffering from indigestion, and bloating. Other problems that can usually occur from improper digestion are heart burn and acid reflux.

1. Never Combine Proteins and Starches

The first rule I want to address in relation to food combining is to NEVER combine protein and complex carbohydrates at the same meal. This means do not eat meat with a potato. Some of you who may have never heard this before are probably saying to yourself “but this is the way we were taught.” Yes, probably, but by whom? Protein is an acid food and carbohydrates are an alkaline base. Acid digestive enzymes and alkaline digestive enzymes will neutralize each other causing proper digestion to stop and putrefaction and fermentation to begin. Carbohydrates begin their digestive process in the mouth with amylase, ptyalin and other alkaline digestive enzymes. Protein-type foods including meat and nuts start their digestive process in the lower stomach with the release of HCL (hydrochloric acid). When a predominant starch combines in the stomach with a predominant protein, you have a clash. This is the bloating you feel after eating a meal with this combination. The liver, pancreas, and adrenal tissues get hit the hardest. It is particularly hard for diabetics to regulate their blood sugar if they eat this way.
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Total Gym Trainer’s Favorite Workouts

Total Gym Trainers Share Their Favorite Exercises

Hey Total Gym Team. As a Total Gym Master Trainer for over the last 10 years, I have had the pleasure of certifying other personal trainers to train their clients on the Total Gym equipment. I always encourage these workout experts to be creative and play with the vast versatility of the Total Gym FIT or the Total Gym XLS. It has been so rewarding because at every single training session, I’ve seen a new exercise. Every one! I’ll look over and one of the trainers is doing something I had never thought of before. So cool.

I want to share some of the favorites exercises of our Total Gym Trainers. You’ll notice one common thing about each one of these exercises; they are working multiple muscle groups. We call these “compound exercises” but think of them as multi-tasking. We all have busy lives so why not combine some moves to help you lose weight, tone or build muscles and get stronger during your at home workout in less time?
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Chuck Norris Reveals Secret To Success

Chuck Norris Reveals Secret To Success

Chuck Norris Healthy

Today on Total Gym Pulse, we feature a behind the scenes clip with long time Total Gym user and brand ambassador Chuck Norris. In this segment, Chuck reveals his secret to success and describes the impact Martial Arts training has had in his life.

In this clip Chuck talks about his early years in the Air Force and how he learned to overcome his fear of public speaking. After winning seven World Championships, Chuck has enjoyed a very successful career as an actor, writer, columnist and philanthropist. He also teaches inner city kids Martial Arts for his foundation Kickstart Kids. Chuck believes the Martial Arts helps develop discipline and gives kids the confidence that they need to accomplish their goals through hard work and dedication. Chuck says the key to success is to never give up. He mentions there will always be obstacles in your way and when that happens you have two choices, quit or keep trying. Chuck says it is important to never give up because you never know when you will overcome the last obstacle in route to your goal.
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The Truth About Soy

Is Soy Good For Your Health?

soybeans

Soy products made from soybeans, an edible legume, can be found in processed foods under many names. Soy protein is commonly found in meal replacement shakes and weight loss shakes used by weightlifters and dieters. Some people use soymilk as a dairy substitute if they have lactose intolerance. You may even see soy lecithin, an emulsifier, in products such as salad dressing or find soy oil in a number of products. Yet, people following a vegetarian or vegan diet typically consume the highest amount of soy in the US, as many vegetarian recipes and vegan recipes use soy as an alternative protein source. But is all that soy really good for you?

Over the years, soy has had both a good and bad reputation. Soy is naturally gluten-free, cholesterol-free, and low in saturated fat. Soy also provides protein, fiber, and heart-healthy fats. Since 1998, products containing at least 6.25 g soy protein per serving are allowed by the FDA to carry the health claim that they “may help to lower the risk of cardiovascular disease” by significantly lowering cholesterol and LDL-cholesterol.

In contrast, according to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the effect of soy protein and/or isoflavones can vary based on a person’s initial cholesterol levels and whether or not soy is replacing animal protein in the diet. According to some research, adding up to 25 grams of soy protein to your diet can reduce heart disease, which may be due to the vitamins, mineral and a soy compound called isoflavones.
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Total Gym Core Workout That’s Safe During Pregnancy

Keeping A Strong Core As Your Belly Expands

Whether you are in your first, second or third trimester, core strength and stabilization are tested in pregnancy. Your abdominals and pelvic floor will lengthen, and your back muscles will either shorten or lengthen depending on your posture. As the fetus grows, the uterus moves upward, in fact a common trend has been for the baby to move up and to the right, allowing the heart not to be compressed. The ribcage will often adapt by expanding thus affecting the obliques, rectus abdominis and transverse abdominis. It becomes important to keep the core strong yet pliable.
This routine focuses on improving posture and stabilization. With all movements, keep a gentle pelvic floor contraction, a sensation of gently pulling the navel into the spine (not sucking in the belly and compressing the baby-gentle is the key) and sliding the shoulder blades down the back and maintaining a neutral pelvic alignment.

Please note with all exercise programs and implementation, a MD clearance is advisable.

Exercise,Level,Recommendations/Modifications
Push Ups OR Planking alternating from hand to forearms (up up down down),3-7 (low to moderate intensity),”Higher inclines are easier. Ensure shoulders are sliding away from the ears. Think of the body in one straight line. Modification would be to perform on the knees. A progression may be push-ups with the glideboard in an open position, i.e. away from the base.”
Low kneeling Pull Ups,3-7 (low to moderate intensity),”Allow the legs to open to accommodate the belly. Higher inclines will focus more on strength. If low kneeling is compressing the knees, then place a pillow between the buttocks and lower legs. Focus on sliding the shoulders away from the ears. Squat standing on floor. Focus on full range of motion and leading with the hips moving backward versus the knees driving forward. Use the glideboard as visualization for sitting back into a chair.”
Plank with or without arm movement,3-7 (low to moderate intensity),”Higher inclines are easier for upper body strength in a plank, however if moving the glideboard it does become heavier the higher the incline. Exercise can also be performed on the knee and/or a repeat of the first plank exercise can also be substituted here. Think of the body in one straight line. Because the belly may be pulling toward the glideboard and swaying the back, you might think of a string on the tailbone lifting the hips up to the sky.”
Low Kneeling Surfer,3-7 (low to moderate intensity),”"
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The 5 Total Gym Exercises You Should Be Doing Every Workout

Back To Basics Workout

5 Essential Exercises

These 5 movements can be used as the foundation for your fitness routine, regardless of your workout goals. If you want an effective workout that maximizes your time, conditions your body to gain strength, burn extra calories, and tone your muscles, this one’s for you.

But what sets these exercises apart? These moves simultaneously activate several muscle groups while targeting strength, balance, and core stability throughout the motion. Collectively, these 5 movements will offer the biggest bang for your workout body!

Training Guidelines:

  • Perform the following 5 exercises in circuit format, one after the other with minimal rest between each exercise
  • 10-15 Reps
  • 1-3 Sets
  • 2-3x/week (if performed more frequently, change up the reps, sets, and incline level to vary the challenge)
  1. Lateral Lunge & Curtsey

    Incline Level: Low

      Areas of Focus:

    • Upper legs (quads, hamstrings, glutes)
    • Calves
    • Cardiovascular strength / stamina
    • Core stabilization

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Total Gym Cardio Blast Workouts

Integrate Cardio Into a Total Gym Workout

The benefits of regular cardio workouts are vast. It is essential to help you torch calories, burn fat, lose weight, lower blood pressure and to reduce stress. Beyond the well-documented benefits, a consistent cardio workout has several hidden benefits such as improving muscle endurance, better brain function and improved sleep quality.

Here are three ways you can use your Total Gym to pump up your cardio. Check out the video for more.

Plyometric Jumps


Plyometric jumps are a favorite of my personal training clients. It gives you an awesome cardio blast and is great for strengthening your bones, legs and butt muscles. Jumping on the Total Gym with the squat stand accessory is fun and safe for all skill levels, because the spine is safely supported on the glide board and you can always choose your own resistance level.

Muscle Endurance Training


An effective way to get a strong cardio burn is by working out your upper body. Doing high repetitions (with lighter weights) in quick explosive moves will get your heart rate up while toning and improving the endurance of your muscles. It’s important to maintain a good pace with proper form and an appropriate resistance during this kind of training. Overlooking any of these can lead to injury.

HIIT – High Intensity Interval Training


HIIT is the amazing when it comes to all the benefits of cardiovascular training. Here is a great way to incorporate it: Get on your Total Gym and do an exercise, then jump off and get your heart rate up by jumping rope, doing leg lunges, burpees, jumping jacks, or something else you enjoy for 30 seconds. Then go back to an exercise on your Total Gym. You’ll get a great, multi-tasking workout with double the benefits in half the time.

Check out the video for more details. Remember that although sometimes you won’t feel like doing your cardio workout, you will always be happier that you did!

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