Rachit Taneja, Author at The Fitness Cafe - Page 12 of 19

OfficeExercises.png
November 14, 201600

Today’s work life demands all your time, energy and attention. At the end of day you feel drained enough to do any physical activity. At the same time you can’t ignore your health. Most of you work 9 to 5 sitting on a chair, which can cause back pain, headaches, wrist pain, stress etc. Well, we suggest you some simple office exercises that you can do within the little space you have at your office. So manage to utilize your tea breaks for a better cause.

Exercises for Arm/Wrists/Hands

  • Wrist Stretch: Stretch out your arm, with palm facing the ground. With another hand hold and pull the fingers towards your body. Release and repeat for alternative hand.
  • Wrist Rotation: Close your fist and while holding your arms straight and steady, rotate your fist clock wise and anti-clock wise.
  • Bicep Curls: Hold a heavy book or filled water bottle in your hand and then slowly move your arm towards the shoulder. Repeat it 10 times for each arm. Keep your back and neck straight while doing this.

 

  • Triceps Desk Dips: With your back towards the table, place your hands shoulder width apart and lower your body towards the ground. Hold, release and repeat.

Exercises for Back /Shoulder/Neck

  • Neck Stretching: Stretch your neck towards one shoulder and hold for a few seconds. After doing this for 10 times, stretch towards other shoulder. You can also do clock wise and anti-clock wise rotations for your neck.
  • Shoulder Rotations: Move your shoulders upwards and backwards together in circular motion. Do it 5 times each and then if you wish, repeat. You can also do simple shoulder raise exercise to release stiffness.
  • Shoulder Blade Squeeze: Your shoulders get sore while working on the computer whole day. To relax your shoulder muscles, squeeze them and maintain the posture for about 15 seconds. Relax and repeat.
  • Side Twists: Hold some weight in your hands and bring them together towards your chest. Now keeping your abs contracted and lower body firm, twist your upper body towards right side and then follow the same for left side.
  • Desk Push Ups: Place hands on edge of desk, shoulder width apart, legs out behind you. Push off with as much force as you can. Place both your hands on your office table, push your body far while maintaining a 45 degree angle with the ground, do as many push-ups as you can.
  • Lumbar Flexion: Stand straight with your feet together and arms upright. Keeping your spine straight, bend downwards to touch your feet. Now repeat till you can to strengthen your back. It is suggested not to push too hard initially to prevent any back injuries
  • Standing Back Extension: It is a great exercise for your lower back. Keep your hands at the back of hips and slowly lean your body backwards. Repeat 5 times.

Also Read: These Drinks can help you shed pounds

Exercises for Legs/Hips/Feet

  • Chair Squats: Raise your hips off the chair and with arms bent down at elbows, lower yourself towards the ground. Hold your position for a few seconds. Then sit back on the chair and repeat the process again.
  • Wall Sits: Place your back against the wall, position your body as if you are sitting on a chair, with thighs absolutely parallel to the ground. Hold the posture as long as your back and thighs support and then slowly slide your back against the wall. Repeat the process.
  • Calf Raises: Stand with feet together and hands placed on a piece of furniture. Now rise your heels above the ground for 10 seconds. Repeat this exercise to provide strength to your calf muscles.
  • High Knee Raise: Stand straight with feet positioned little apart. Bring your arms forward, keeping it parallel to the ground. Now raise your knee high above to touch the arm. Do this for 10 times and now repeat for alternate knee.
  • Foot Rotations: Raise both legs above the ground and stretch your feet. Now make circular rotations in clock wise and anti-clock wise manner.
  • Hamstring Curl: Fold your arms and keep your upper body straight. Now push your lower leg back in upward direction.

Related: Exercise and Fitness Myths, BUSTED!

  • Lunges: If you can afford a little extra leg room, do side and forward lunges. Step forward to bring your right thigh parallel to the ground. Hold for 5 seconds and push back. Repeat for left leg. You can also try side lunges.
  • Sitting Leg Extension: While you are sitting on your office chair, stretch out your legs and raise them to bring parallel to the ground. Keep them straight till you can, then slowly put them down. You can also try this with one leg raise at a time and repeat for alternative leg.

With a little smart management of your office hours, you can safeguard your health. Try to invest a minute or two in frequently blinking your eyes. This makes them relaxed. During prolonged sitting hours, manage to stand once in a while. Take deep breaths to release stress. Stay hydrated to avoid headaches and muscle cramps. Prefer to take the stairs more often. These small changes today can ensure you a healthier tomorrow. Some offices also provide gym to spend some time on your fitness. A fit mind and body will surely enhance your performance, both at work and outside.

Healthy-alcohol-consumption.jpg
November 11, 201600

If you have a buzz for booze, try to make it as healthy as possible. No denying the fact that it turns only little benefits but if you are a wise drinker, you might control the side effects that it delivers with every sip. Alcohol reaches your bloodstream really fast and waits for the liver to break it down. Drinking alcohol too quickly or on an empty stomach weakens your senses much faster as compared to slow drinking. Look for healthier ways of consuming alcohol so as to cut down on its negative after effects. Some of the tips for healthy alcohol consumption are here:

Be a Moderate Drinker

A moderate drinker reduces the risk of heart diseases and hypertension. Some people also suggest that a healthy drinker has better room for creativity. To practice healthy drinking, 1 serve of an alcoholic drink for woman and 2 for man per day is recommended. Beyond this, you not only fall prey to hangovers, empty calories and health diseases but also increase the probability of getting addicted.

Combine it with a Healthy Snack

Drinks are always accompanied by fried and unhealthy snacks. Try to replace such snacks with green salad, hummus, cashew nuts or scrambled eggs. This will prevent adding unwanted and nutrition-less calories along with the alcohol.

Prefer Drinks That Offer Lesser Calories

Calories associated with the type of alcohol you choose may vary anywhere from 100 to 500. Champagne, wine, beer have lesser calories than cocktails, vodka, whisky, tequila etc. So choose your drink wisely.

Avoid mixing your drinking with more sugary or carbonated drinks. This will add up to your calories intake and enhance the chances of weight gain. Instead enjoy your drink on the rocks.

Eat Before you Drink

Drinking on empty stomach is never a good idea. Alcohol reaches down to your liver faster than it can process, thus rising up the blood alcohol levels. If there is some food in the stomach, then alcohol takes longer to get absorbed thus giving liver more time for processing. Also you can say no to unwanted snacks if you are not hungry.

Drink Lots of Water

One of the after –effects of alcohol is dehydration. To avoid that, reach for a glass of water in between your drinks. This way you not only maintain body’s water balance but also cut down on your alcohol consumption. To make it even better, have a cup of green tea prior to alcohol. It will not only flush out toxins but also make up for the water and nutrition loss that you have invited along with alcohol.

Don’t Forget to Exercise

To combat the extra calorie intake, plan out a physical activity like a run/jog/skipping or exercise. This will help you create a balance between your waistline and booze cravings.

Follow with a Healthier Drink

No matter how moderate a drinker you are, alcohol will have its after effects on your body. It will hamper your mind’s alertness and also your central nervous system. Next morning, replenish your system with a cup of coffee or fresh lime water. It will also reduce hangover.

Have Alcohol Free Days

Don’t drink 7 days a week. Devise a strategy for yourself for healthy drinking. Even moderate drinking is not good if done 365 days of the year. Stick to alternate days , weekends only or 5 days a week plan. This gives your system some time to detoxify. To reverse the side effects, stick to nutritional diet and detox drinks on non-alcoholic days.

Also Read: What Happens When You Quit Smoking

A few safety tips

  • Never drink and drive: Alcohol slows down your brains functions and senses. So never take risk of driving while you are drunk.
  • Respond to your body’s signals: Your system will tell your brain when it has reached its limits. Don’t over booze.
  • Avoid any unnecessary arguments: Drinking enhances irrationality and aggression. So be careful when drinking in a gathering.
Jogging-tips.jpg
November 4, 201600

Jogging being simple and fun workout is the most widely adopted exercise by anyone who aims for a fit body and healthy mind. Although jogging requires no extra cost or equipment, there are a few important jogging tips that can help you achieve maximum benefits.

Stretching
Source: http://www.freestockphotos.biz/

1. Warm Up and Stretching

Just before you start jogging, warm up your body to avoid any unwanted sore muscles or cramps. Warming up increases the heart rate of your body and thus rushes blood to your muscles faster and charge them for workout. A 5 minute walk prior to jog should be enough.

Just like warming up, a proper cool down of body’s muscles is equally important. Do some stretching post jogging to slowly bring down your heart’s rate and calm your hamstrings and calf muscles. Practicing pre and post warm up will reduce the chances of unwanted fatigue and sluggish body.

 

2. Watch What you Wear

Jogging shoes
Source: https://www.pexels.com/

Right pair of shoes is one crucial factor for a smooth and comfortable jog. Don’t hesitate to spend money on proper cushioned shoes to avoid any internal foot injuries or shoe bites.

It is also important to choose the right fabric for your sportswear. Pure cotton will not help as it absorbs and retains sweat and can cause skin irritation. Pick a synthetic fabric instead that has lesser tendency of retaining dampness.

 

3. Set a Target

Strategize your jogging. You can set your jogging targets w.r.t. time or distance. Then gradually you can plan how much distance you want to cover up in a given time. You will gain speed only with time. So don’t hurry. Just create a plan according to your age and body’s capacity. Keep increasing the intensity from time to time.

 

4. The Right Posture

If your posture is not correct while running, it can cause pain in different parts of your body. Keep your neck and back straight, shoulders relaxed and head upright to avoid stooping. Bend your elbows to maintain your arms positioned near your waist. Avoid longer strides as it permits lesser contact area of feet with ground. This leads to a forceful high impact landing on heels, hence aggravating chances of foot injury.

Also Read: What Should Be Your Running Form from Head to Toe

 

5. Techniques for Breathing

It’s very important to focus on your breathing pattern while jogging since efficient breathing will lead to improved performance. Sufficient oxygen intake is necessary as it helps the body to maintain rhythm while jogging. While jogging your lungs need more oxygen than normal because your muscles are in work and need more oxygen to provide them energy. So deep inhalation pattern before you start to jog is recommended.

 

6. Stay Hydrated

Remember to drink lots of water, at least an hour prior to jogging. While you jog, your body will sweat and shall lose fluids, thus lowering your body’s water balance. To maintain it, keep drinking water in random intervals if you jog for longer duration. If you feel dehydrated, automatically your body will not withstand any physical task.

 

7. Eat Wisely

Before you set out for jogging, provide your body the fuel it needs. Have food rich in healthy carbohydrates, mainly fruits or juices, as it will not only provide energy to your system but also gets digested in 15 to 20 minutes. No one wants to run with a heavy stomach. Also you can’t burden your muscles by running on an empty stomach. This will make you worn out and tired in lesser time. Having a low-fat protein shake after your jog will prove to be a good source to provide drained muscles the energy they need.

8. Make your Jogging Fun

Find a partner or be a part of any active running group. Soon you will realize jogging can be more fun. It also gives you more enthusiasm and maintains your interest in the activity. Organize fun competitions within the group. It will keep you inspired and committed towards your goals. Running in groups rather than alone also helps you share motivation and boost self-encouragement.

 

9. Mix your Routine with Light Exercises

If you have been jogging for a while now, your body’s endurance must have enhanced. So in random intervals while jogging, plan some exercise. You can do some weight lifting, cardio exercise or light body weight exercises. This will provide strength to the muscles and achieve sustainability. Don’t push yourself too hard that you end up feeling exhausted instead.

 

10. Take a Day Off

Allow your body a day or two off to rejuvenate itself for a fresh and healthier start. Your body will utilize this time to strengthen your muscles and recover from any sprains. If you don’t take rest, you might not be able to fight body’s fatigue and soreness. So give your muscles some time to relax and rebuild any wear & tear.

 

Choose to stay away from:

  • Isolated and unattended tracks.
  • Headphones or any hindrance to signals.
  • Dark and less crowded hours for jogging.
  • Swarming areas/roads.
  • Negative co runners to stay motivated.

Also Read: Running Tips That Will Help You Run Extra Miles!

WeightLoss-without-dieting-1024x682.jpg
November 2, 201600

To shed those extra kilos, you don’t have to be harsh on yourself. While maintaining overall health and keeping a check on weight is of utmost importance, it does not mean you have to starve yourself. Forget those painful fad diets to maintain your body’s shape. The key factor is eating the right foods in the right quantity. Follow these few simple tips to lose weight without dieting and you will be on your way to a healthier life in no time.

 

1. No more junk

A little cheating to satisfy your cravings once in a while is allowed. You don’t have to always say no to your taste buds but work out ways to make healthy food tastier for yourself. Be your own boss. All you need is a little knowledge of which food type is good and bad for you and you can experiment to provide those essential nutrients to your body. So you don’t have to snack up on unhealthy junk. Homemade soups, red sauce over fat rich creams, brown bread veg sandwich, fiber rich lettuce wrap are some healthy options to consider.

 

2. Eat Right

Stick to frequent meals keeping in mind all essential nutritional requirement of body. Eat 6 times a day rather than 3. This will allow lesser intake of food at a time and also keep your body’s metabolism rate high. Be wise when choosing calories. Eat more veggies and fruits for a healthier and low calorie intake. Chewing food slower also sends signals of satiety to your brain faster, resulting in only required amount of food intake. Split up your diet plan to include required quantity of vitamins, calcium, minerals, healthy carbs and other daily nutrition needs.

 

3. More Water

Drink lukewarm water first thing in the morning. It will boost your metabolism and also aid in weight loss. Staying hydrated will not only keep you away from many diseases, it will also give you a feeling of fullness. Also, it is natural detox agent.

Related: Health Benefits of Drinking Water

 

4. Cut down on alcohol

If you have weight loss on your mind, limit your intake of alcohol as much as possible. Not only it has higher calories per gram but generally accompanies binge snacking, which again will add on more pounds. Whenever your system absorbs alcohol, it starts processing it prior to any other sugar or carbs already present. As a result of which body’s metabolic activity slows down and weight gain probability increases.

 

5. Exercise

If you plan an exercise routine and fix monthly targets, you surely will be an enthusiastic weight loser. Research has shown that a protein rich diet prior to exercising helps you burn more calories faster than people who exercise on empty stomach. You can also take up a sports for added benefits. Small lifestyle changes that increase your body’s workout capacity like using stairs, following yoga, aerobics, dancing anything that helps you sweat and increase your heart rate will prove to be more beneficial in your journey to reduce your waistline

Also Read: 9 Foods to Eat for Weight Loss

6. Fiber and Whole Grains

Whole grains and fiber rich foods like oats, barley, brown rice, whole wheat bread etc. take longer hours to get digested and therefore keep your appetite suppressed for longer hours. Also these foods have richer nutritional value than refined grains. Make these a staple in your diet and see the pounds melt away.

 

7. Low Sugar Intake

Cut down your sugar intake. Avoid carbonated sugary drinks and sweet candies. It can raise your insulin levels and increase the risk of obesity along with other disease like type II diabetes, tooth decay, early ageing and heart diseases. Drinking a can of soda can add as much as 150 calories with zero nutritional value. Choosing green tea over such drinks can have amazing health benefits on your system.

Related: Six Health Benefits of Quitting Sugar

 

8. Sleep More, Eat Lesser

The more hours you are awake, the more you will crave for unhealthy and untimely meals. This is a result of more production of ghrelin (signal for eating) and decreased leptin (signal for stop eating) in your body caused due to lack of sleep. Sleep rejuvenates your body for the next day’s activities. So pamper your mind and body with a sound 8 hours of sleep.

 

9. Walk/Jog/Run

Indulge your body in calorie burning activities. A brisk walk, jogging or running are the easiest and most preferred ways to burn calories and maintain body weight. You cut down anywhere between 70 to 120 calories by walking for just 30 minutes. Early morning walks also improve vitamin D levels in your body. So don’t be lazy and take up walking right now.

You Might Like: How to Lose Weight Without Going to the Gym?

 

No more starving diet plans. It will not help you in the long run and also lower down your energy levels. Be kind enough to your body by meeting its daily nutritional requirements, or your body will start using up your energy stores to make up for the nutritional deficiency. You will also start feeling less energetic and hungry most of the times and you are bound to stray away from the right track. Eat healthy and wise for a healthier tomorrow.

 

Lose-weight-without-gym.jpg
October 31, 201600

Want to say no to both: unwanted fat and gym? Well, don’t stress out, you might score a chance. The journey might be challenging but promise to keep yourself motivated.

It’s no rocket science that you have accumulated those extra deposits of fat by burning lesser calories than you have consumed. But to shed off the extra kilos, just inculcate these simple habits in your lifestyle.

 

Mind what you eat

Opt for frequent and healthy diets. Don’t snack up with unhealthy and junk meals. Ensure your body meets its requirement of proteins, healthy carbs and sugar levels.

  • Don’t Skip the first meal: Pamper yourself with breakfast that is rich in fiber and proteins. This boosts your body’s energy levels.
  • Eat healthy carbs: Choose carbs that are good for your body like whole grains, over unhealthier ones like rice, breads, and sugar rich beverages.
  • Stick to more vegetables and fruits than processed foods
  • Intake of sugar in natural form (fructose) will not harm you but carbonated drinks and sweetened beverages surely will.
  • Substitute your cravings: Tea/coffee addict? Drink a cup of green tea instead. Throw that pack of chips and eat a few cashew nuts. Replace those pizza cravings with oatmeal. Gradually you build up a taste for healthier snack.
  • Prepare a balanced diet plan according to your gender and age that suffices your protein, vitamins, carbohydrates, sugar, fiber, calcium intake. Include healthy fats (unsaturated fat over trans-fat). Take care you encapsulate all the essential nutrients. You might take help from a nutritionist.

Related: 9 Foods To Eat For Weight Loss

Exercise Regime

Now that your diet chart is prepared, make sure you have an exercise plan.

Set a goal for yourself and keep accelerating with time. There are number of body weight exercises, cardio exercises, yoga asanas for which you don’t need a gym. Keeping in mind your medical conditions (if any) and age group, make a workout plan and as you exercise, gradually push yourself out of the comfort zone.

  • Body Weight Exercises
    • Crunches
    • Planks
    • Push ups
    • Squats etc
  • Cardio
    • Jumping jack
    • Skipping
    • Step Ups
    • High Knee Raise etc
  • Yoga Asana
    • Camel pose
    • Boat Pose
    • Raised Foot Pose
    • Bow Pose etc
yoga poses
Source: https://wikimedia.org

Related: 9 Ways to Lose Weight Without Dieting

Lifestyle

Home to work and work to home leaves you with no extra time for yourself. So gradually indulge healthier habits into your daily lifestyle.

  • Sound sleep: Take 7 to 8 hours of sound sleep, mainly between 10-11 pm and 4-5 am. Fewer hours of sleep may lead to lesser amount of calories burnt and hinders proper metabolism. Added advantage of no midnight cravings.
  • Take up some sport: Pick any sport that will increase your physical. This could be a fun way to do cardio exercises and gradually shed weight.
  • Drink more water: On an average drink up to 8 glasses of water and preferable half an hour before meals. This will not only help you stay hydrated but also reduce your appetite.
  • Walk Walk and Walk: Skip that escalator and take a few steps instead. As simple as that. More you walk, more calories you burn. Undoubtedly brisk walking offers superior results.

 

Form a routine

  • Suit yourself and choose an activity of your interest, maybe, trekking, rock climbing, swimming or anything that you consider as an intense physical workout. Now fix a routine and go for it.

Avoid :

There are shortcut methods available in market, which we certainly do not encourage. Undergoing surgery or taking diet pills or fat burning supplements are all unreliable ways and have no long term results.

Alcohol: If you are aiming for weight loss, alcohol is a big no. It will only lower your metabolism and provide absolutely zero nutrition to your body.

Also Read: Best Type of cardio for Weight Loss

Making these simple changes in your life will definitely helps you lose weight and make you Fitter!

hard-to-lose-weight.png
October 31, 201601

If excess body weight is giving you nightmares, stop worrying and start acting.

There are many reasons of obesity: lethargic lifestyle, genetics and unhealthy eating habits. Root cause being your body’s intake of calories is more than it can process. First understand that any extra sugar, protein or carb that is not being processed by body will be deposited in the fat cells. Now getting rid of this stubborn fat can be a real challenge but not impossible.

A fitness regime and healthy eating are the fundamental rules for anyone targeting weight loss. Your body will showcase the quality and quantity of food you eat. So make sure whatever you consume has some nutritional benefits to your body. Don’t starve yourself, just eat right. Are you keeping your body physically active enough to burn the calories that you have? If you are taking care of these basic things, weight loss is certainly not that tough.

However there can be a few difficulties in your journey from fat to fit. But knowing the benefits of the result, it’s definitely worth the efforts. Let us list down a few challenges that is making it hard to lose weight.

 

Goal definition

Have you assigned yourself a target to be achieved? If not, do it right away.

Set targets help you work better towards your goal.

Bad Eating habits

We don’t say to do mathematics of the calories that you eat all the time, but you should be aware that your body is able to burn the calories consumed. Make a healthy diet plan. Have a protein and fiber rich breakfast in the morning. Fiber stay in your body for longer duration thus suppressing any desire for snacking up uselessly. Instead of 3, take 6 smaller and frequent diets. Have salads and drink more water half an hour prior to eating. Eat less for dinner. Dinner should be taken minimum 3 hours before sleeping, so that you don’t have to lie down right after you eat.

Regular detoxification

Clean your body by having more water, green tea and lukewarm honey water. It will purify your internal system by removing the toxins from your body.

Related: Ways to Lose Belly Fat

Prefer more unprocessed food than processed one

Eat more vegetables and fruits than chips, pasta etc. It has no nutritional value and will add useless calories to your body.

Exercise

Choose an exercise plan for your body, focusing on the fat deposition on your body (belly fat/thigh/arms). However full body work out will only have added benefits. Keep increasing the time and intensity of your workout for better results.

Hormonal disorder

If you think you are doing right, but still not getting desired results, one reason might be hormonal imbalance. Observe your body’s energy levels, appetite and response to routine activities. If you feel more hungry than normal, still less energetic and experience mood swings, it might be cause of hormonal imbalances in your body. It may also be the reason you are not losing weight as desired.

Genetics

Another factor is your genes. It is not uncommon for children to be more prone to obesity if their parents are obese. Usually you will have to be more careful and workout more rigorously if you are really keen about weight loss.

Stress

Are you stressed out most of the times? Don’t forget that stress will only add more pounds to your body. When in stress, your body secretes cortisol hormone which may tend to rise your appetite and end up making you more fat. So friends, try to stay happy and stress free.

Sleep deprivation

Do you pamper your body with 7 to 8 hours of sound sleep? It’s very important in the long run so as to maintain body’s energy levels. If you haven’t slept well, you won’t feel active the whole next day, which might lead you skipping your exercise and running out for unhealthy snacking for immediate energy. Researchers also suggest that sound sleepers have better weight loss graphs than sleep deprived peers.

So with just a few healthy approaches towards life, you can easily make weight loss manageable and achievable. Incorporate these few tips in your lifestyle and do wonders.

Good Luck!

Also Read: 9 Ways to Lose Weight Without Dieting


About us

The Fitness Cafe started out when a couple of guys set out on a fitness goal that many believed to be impossible. One of the founders lost 48lbs in one year and is on his way to completing his first half marathon!


CONTACT US