9 Common Myths About Exercise | Atlanta Personal Trainer

We are so excited to see this article in TIME Magazine on Fitter Faster!  Make sure to check it out below:

9 Common Myths About Exercise

In the new book Fitter Faster, health journalist Robert J. Davis and celebrity fitness trainer Brad Kolowich, Jr. show how it’s possible to spend far less time exercising and get the same—or even better—results.

Exercise advice can be misleading. Here are nine familiar fitness directives that may be unnecessary or even counterproductive.

Stretch beforehand to prevent injuries.

Many of us learned in gym class or little league that static stretching, such as reaching for your toes and holding the stretch, before activity can prevent injury. But research has generally failed to support the idea. What’s more, pre-exercise static stretches may even do harm by impairing performance. One possible reason is that a looser muscle acts like an overstretched slingshot, generating less force than one that’s taut. Another theory is that stretching “cold” muscles damages them.A better approach is to warm up and then do dynamic stretches, such as arm or leg swings, which involve movement. Unlike static stretching, dynamic stretching primes muscles for action and may improve performance. In a study of young and middle-aged men, for example, vertical jump heights increased after dynamic stretching, while they declined after static stretching.Save static stretching for after exercise, when your muscles are warm. Hold each stretch for 20 to 30 seconds. You should feel tightness or slight discomfort, but not pain.

Exercise on an empty stomach to burn more fat.

The rationale behind doing aerobic exercise on an empty stomach, a practice known as “fasted cardio,” is that when carbohydrate stores in the body are depleted, you burn mainly fat. In addition, when insulin levels are low, which is the case when you fast, you burn more fat.Indeed there’s some evidence that fasted cardio may boost fat burning—but only fleetingly. Over the course of days or weeks (which is what counts), research shows that fasted cardio doesn’t offer any advantages. In a four-week trial that randomly assigned young women to either fast or drink a 250-calorie shake before their aerobic workouts, while otherwise eating a low-calorie diet, both groups lost the same amount of fat and weight.Indeed there’s some evidence that fasted cardio may boost fat burning—but only fleetingly. Over the course of days or weeks (which is what counts), research shows that fasted cardio doesn’t offer any advantages. In a four-week trial that randomly assigned young women to either fast or drink a 250-calorie shake before their aerobic workouts, while otherwise eating a low-calorie diet, both groups lost the same amount of fat and weight.

Monitor your heart rate during exercise.

To measure exercise intensity, some programs have people wear heart-rate monitors and stay within a particular zone. Many gyms and cardio machines display charts showing what your target heart rate should be.The problem is that these targets are dependent upon your maximum heart rate (MHR), which is notoriously hard to measure on your own. The conventional way is to subtract your age from 220. But that formula is too simplistic and often yields flawed results, especially in older people. Other formulas have been shown to be lacking as well. If your MHR estimate is off, your target zone will be too high or too low.While people with medical conditions may require a heart-rate monitor during activity, most of us can use a simpler method to gauge intensity: a scale from 1 to 10 that measures how hard you feel your body is working overall. A 5 or 6 indicates moderate intensity, and a 7 or higher means vigorous activity.Perhaps the easiest method is the talk test. If you can talk and sing during your activity without becoming breathless, the intensity level is low. If you can talk but not sing, the intensity is moderate. And if you can say only a few words before having to catch your breath, you’re doing vigorous exercise.

Hold weights when you walk.

Carrying small dumbbells or wearing wrist weights seems, in theory, like a good way to boost the intensity of your walks while also working your upper body. In fact, adding weight does burn more calories. But there’s a problem. The light weights that people often use for walking typically burn too few extra calories to really matter. And heavier weights necessary for meaningful calorie burning may alter your natural arm swing and increase the risk of injuries.A better option may be to walk with poles. The practice, sometimes called Nordic walking or exerstriding, originated in Finland as an off-season training method for cross-country skiers. Research suggests that pole walking works upper body and abdominal muscles, allows you to walk faster and burns more calories than regular walking—all without making you feel as though you’re working harder. In addition, unlike weights, which may put stress on your joints, pole walking takes pressure off your knees, hips and lower back.

Buy running shoes based on your foot type.

Running shoes come in several categories, each designed for a different foot type. Stability shoes are for runners whose feet roll inward excessively or “overpronate” when they land, while motion control shoes are intended for those who have flat feet and are severe overpronators. Neutral shoes are designed for runners with high arches who don’t overpronate or who underpronateFor years it’s been widely assumed that overpronation leads to injuries and that using the right shoe can reduce the risk. But research has called these beliefs into question. In a study of more than 900 novice runners, all were instructed to use the same model of neutral shoes regardless of their foot type. Surprisingly, the runners with overpronated feet experienced fewer injuries than those with neutral feet, even though the overpronators were using the “wrong” shoe.This study comes on the heels of other research showing that assigning shoes based on foot type does not reduce injury risk. While a stability or motion control shoe may be the best choice for some people, your best bet is likely a neutral shoe that’s comfortable.

Drink even when you’re not thirsty.

Conventional wisdom (much of it influenced by makers of sports beverages) asserts that you should “stay ahead of your thirst” before, during and after exercise to avoid dehydration. But studies show that for most people, thirst is a reliable indicator of when you need more fluid, even during exercise.Research suggests that dehydration isn’t always the threat that it’s portrayed to be. Contrary to popular belief, it’s generally not a cause of exercise-related muscle cramps or heat illness. And studies involving competitive cyclists have found that mild dehydration doesn’t impair exercise performance. What’s more, drinking only when thirsty results in better performance than does chugging constantly.Though you want to make sure to consume enough water, especially if you’re older or exercising in the heat, a bigger problem than dehydration may be drinking too much during exercise. If you take in so much fluid that your body can’t get rid of the excess, sodium levels can become dangerously low. The resulting condition, known as hyponatremia or water intoxication, is potentially fatal. To head it off, simply drink when you’re thirsty.

Check the color of your pee to see whether you’re dehydrated.

You’ve likely heard that urine ideally should be pale yellow and that the darker it is, the more you’re dehydrated. It turns out the science behind such guidance isn’t so clear. In a review of the evidence, researchers debunked the notion that urine color is an accurate marker of hydration. Part of the problem is that some foods (such as beets and carrots) can affect the color of urine, as can certain vitamins. Ditto for some medications and dietary supplements. What’s more, striving for pale pee could cause some people to overhydrate themselves during exercise and develop hyponatremia.If you’re concerned that your workout routine is leaving you dehydrated, try weighing yourself without clothes before and after exercise. If you lose up to a few pounds, you’re likely okay. If you lose more than that, you may want to increase your fluid intake. If, on the other hand, you gain weight, you may be drinking too much.

Eat afterward to refuel.

While you’ve probably heard that downing protein within an hour or so after strength training is necessary to maximize gains, the research on this is mixed. The science is even less conclusive on whether eating protein after aerobic exercise is beneficial.Consuming carbohydrates after exercise may help endurance athletes, especially if they have another training session later in the day. Some research suggests that chocolate milk is an ideal recovery food for such athletes because of its ratio of carbohydrates to protein. But for the rest of us who do a typical exercise routine of walking or running for 30 to 60 minutes, there’s generally no need to refuel with chocolate milk or anything else. In fact, if you’re watching your weight, adding calories after your workouts—without reducing them sufficiently elsewhere in your diet—could undermine your efforts.

Avoid sex before competition.

Abstinence from sex has long been considered essential for success in sports. As Rocky Balboa’s trainer put it in the movie Rocky, “women weaken legs.” But research has yielded little support for the belief. One study, which involved former male athletes, measured grip strength the morning after they’d had sex with their wives and then repeated the test after the men had abstained for at least six days. There were no differences in test results.Overall, the research suggests that sex before physical activity doesn’t have negative effects as long as there’s a lag of at least two hours and the sexual activity doesn’t also involve alcohol, drugs or sleep loss. In fact, it’s possible that sex may even enhance athletic performance by helping people relax.It’s unknown whether women are affected differently than men. The impact likely varies from person to person, so if you’re wondering how pre-game sex affects your golf score or your 5K race time, you‘ll need to do your own experiment and see for yourself.Adapted from TIME Health Magazine at http://time.com/4779651/exercise-myths-heart-rate/?xid=homepage

We hope you all enjoyed this amazing article!

Caroline Kolowich

FITTER FASTER in TIME Magazine | Atlanta Personal Trainer

Make sure to check out FITTER FASTER in Time Magazine’s Special Edition, “The Science of Exercise”

On news stand until July!

Best,

Caroline Kolowich

 

May 2017 Newsletter | Atlanta Personal Trainer

Publishers Weekly Review: FITTER FASTER | Atlanta Personal Trainer

From health journalist Davis and personal trainer Kolowich comes this precise guide to overcoming fitness barriers and exercising efficiently via high-intensity interval and circuit training. Davis and Kolowich break down the process of getting fit into four key parts: get ready, get smart, get more out of exercise, and get going. They begin with motivational facts: in addition to increasing life expectancy and improving health, exercise also enables better sex and sleep, among other benefits. Instead of providing specific motivation plans, the authors provide thoughtful advice that is widely applicable: make a game plan, make winning a goal, and reward yourself. Part two details the fundamentals of aerobic activity, strength training, and stretching, and part three gives instructions on what to consume (protein, complex carbs, water) and how to prevent “bad pain.” The final section presents a varied, customizable workout regimen that can also be done in as little as 15 minutes. What separates this guide from others is its commitment to facts and plans backed by science and research; throughout, the authors debunk myths and answer questions such as “Does sex before physical activity impair athletic performance?” and “Does more sweating mean a more intense workout?” This is an important read for exercise hopefuls and aficionados alike. (June)

Book Review found on: http://www.publishersweekly.com/978-0-8144-3771-1

Book Review: Fitter Faster | Atlanta Personal Trainer

 

Spring Into Your Summer Body Group Fitness Class | Atlanta Personal Training

“I’m not ready for swimsuit season. I’m too nervous to workout in a group fitness setting. I’m not as in shape as other people in group fitness classes.” Guess what? You can conquer your fears and you can have fun doing it! You deserve to feel great and you deserve to feel confident!

Swimsuit season is right around the corner, and we are here to help you feel your best yet! Join us for our deluxe Spring Into Your Summer Body group fitness classes, coming this month. We have 3 full body workout classes planned, open to all levels of training. While each class is a group fitness class, we want each of you to focus on YOU and only YOU in our classes. We are so excited to see you there!

Dates:

Saturday, April 15

Saturday, April 22

Saturday, April 29

Times:            

9:00am – 9:45am

Price:              

$25 per class

OR

Buy 2 classes, get 1 free

Place: 

Brad Kolowich Jr Personal Training Studio

Sign up by emailing class@bradkolowichjr.com

 

March 2017 Newsletter | Atlanta Personal Trainer

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February 2017 Newsletter | Atlanta Personal Trainer

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The Booty and Ab Burner | Atlanta Personal Trainer

The Booty and Ab Burner

Join us for our very first Booty and Ab Burner – it will be a blast, a killer workout and a great way to start off your Super Bowl Sunday!

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Date:  Sunday, February 5

Time:  9:00am – 9:45am

Price:  $20

Place:  Brad Kolowich Jr Personal Training Studio

Sign up by emailing info@bradkolowichjr.com 

We are so excited to see you there!

Caroline Kolowich

Brad in Georgia State Homes Article | Atlanta Personal Trainer

Make sure to check out this amazing article, “Atlanta Personal Trainer and Lifelong Fitness Enthusiast Focuses on Individual Improvement,” by Kelly Church featuring Brad!

To view the article, click on the picture below:

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Congrats, Brad!  Your dedication, hard work and passion for health, fitness and helping others continues to be such an inspiration to us all.  Not only are you all of the above, but you are also one of the most genuine and positive individuals I have ever met.  Thanks for being you!

& to our wonderful clients, thank YOU for being you.  Our team is so happy and lucky to have you all!

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Caroline Kolowich