Is Sitting the New Smoking? Sitting in front of the TV is not healthy
Aging & Health

Sitting – The New Smoking?

Dr. James Levine, the director of the Mayo Clinic at Arizona State University says that “Sitting is the new smoking“. Smoking, once a popular activity, was not recognized as the extreme health danger it was, until many years later. And now sitting may be in the same category. At first, this sounds ridiculous. But there’s a bevy of studies backing this statement up – and a possible logical explanation for why sitting for long duration is unhealthy. First, we’ll spoil some of the surprise – it’s not sitting in particular, but extreme sedentary habits that seem to be the risk factor. Secondly, it appears that being sedentary all day, then hitting the gym is not an effective solution. The extended [Read more …]

Proper sleep is required for fitness and health. Sleep deprivation and insomnia are associated with a number of serious health risks.
Aging & Health

The Importance of Sleep for Health

Everybody needs sleep. But did you know that a lack of proper sleep can increase the risk of diabetes and other risks? Having good sleep habits is also known as sleep hygiene. The Physical Effects of Not Getting Enough Sleep You probably know that if you miss too much sleep you feel tired the next day. That’s obvious, but what is less obvious is the impact on your hormonal systems that can also occur. Increased Risk of Type 2 Diabetes If you are chronically missing too much sleep, you are raising your risk for Type 2 Diabetes. How does this happen? Through research, it has been shown that not getting enough sleep (for example only 4 hours a night or [Read more …]

Barbell Back Squat - used extensively in Starting Strength
Exercise

Starting Strength Dictionary

FitAtMidlife’s Starting Strength Routine Dictionary It’s no secret – we love Mark Rippetoe’s Starting Strength routine. It’s the efficient, science and logic based training program that is made for beginners of any age to develop strength. Starting Strength utilizes the barbell. The barbell is the most efficient means to build strength – because it’s the device that can carry the most weight. That may sound intimidating, but it shouldn’t be. You start light and through the magic of linear progression you get strong – and build muscle mass at the same time. Starting Strengh places great emphasis on proper form, and it’s safe for the joints. Lastly, it’s targeted to novices – people who have never lifted before. And all [Read more …]

The deadlift is an important lift for strength development
Exercise

The FitAtMidlife Workout Dictionary

Here’s a comprehensive list of terms and lingo you’ll run across in the gym. We’ll provide definitions for all the terminology that is pervasive in modern fitness methods. But it’s more than a list of terms – you’ll also find out about some of the current popular programs and personalities. We cover CrossFit and just about everything else you may hear about. 1RM – 1 Repetition Max 1RM is your 1 Repetition Max – This is the absolute maximum weight you can lift for 1 complete repetition of an exercise (with correct form). Commonly used to gauge progress in the big compound or power movements – for example you likely know your 1RM for bench press, squat, deadlift, cleans, and [Read more …]

Water - the best beverage for health and fitness
Diet & Nutrition

Water – The Best Beverage

Here at FitAtMidlife.com one of our primary nutritional rules is : Thirsty? Drink water. Everybody knows that water is essential to life, and we drink when we are thirsty. But do you really need any beverage besides water? Ok, maybe coffee, and alcohol in reasonable proportions, if you partake in it. But I think you’ll understand the benefits of drinking water when you are thirsty: Water has 0 calories Water is plentiful Water is often free, and almost always the cheapest option Cold water can help you cool down Water is flavorless Water is what your body naturally craves when thirsty. Sodas, fruit juices, milk, and other beverages are loaded with calories. And it’s very easy to drink a lot [Read more …]

Body Fat
Diet & Nutrition

What You Need To Know About Body Fat

Here’s the most important points to understand about body fat Fat (variously known as body fat, adipose tissue, or just plain fat) is essential to life. It’s not possible to have “zero body fat”, nor would such a condition be desirable. Fat serves to store energy for later use by the body, it cushions the body and organs, and serves as insulation. But perhaps most importantly – body fat is part of the endocrine system – the body’s system of glands that produce hormones that regulate metabolism, growth, tissue function, sexual function, reproduction, sleep, mood, and other things. This is a relatively recent finding – and it has important health considerations. Why Understanding Your Distribution of Body Fat is Important [Read more …]

Tape Measure
Diet & Nutrition

Waist Size – Why It Matters

Waist Size is a Key Indicator Of Health and Risk of Serious Illness Waist Circumference (or distance around the waist) is an important indicator of an individual’s amount of abdominal obesity, which is fat held around the stomach. Excess abdominal fat, resulting in waist sizes greater than 35 inches for women or 40 inches for men, is strongly associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and death. To measure waist size: Place a tape measure around your body at the top of your hipbone (normally at the level of your belly button.) Ensure the tape measure is level (horizontal around the waist), and snug, but should not be compressing the skin. Do not hold your breath [Read more …]

Body Mass Index - BMI
Diet & Nutrition

BMI – Body Mass Index

BMI is Body Mass Index. Body Mass Index is a formula that uses weight and height to estimate body fat for adult men and women. The BMI is a controversial – it’s easy to calculate but it can’t possibly accurately measure your body fat. The calculation doesn’t consider body composition including individual factors such as bone or muscle mass. Height in inches: Weight in pounds: Calculate BMI Shortcomings of BMI As mentioned previously, the BMI is easy to calculate, but not a high precision measurement. Because it’s a simple calculation based solely on height and weight, it can’t take into account individual factors. When calculating your BMI, consider the following special conditions that may apply. The BMI may: Underestimate body [Read more …]

Rucking - walking or hiking with a loaded backpack - it's simple and effective.
Rucking

What is Rucking?

Rucking is walking with a loaded backpack – and not just in the woods! “Ruck”, short for “rucksack”, is military slang for a backpack. This is a cheap, simple exercise that burns calories and builds aerobic endurance due to the added weight. Rucking Tips – The basics Grab a backpack. Load it with about 10% of your bodyweight (as a beginner). You can use bricks, dumbbells, weight plates, or anything else that will fit. Walk – the distance and pace is up to you. Also known as foot marching, ruck marching, but usually just plain “rucking” – it’s deceptively effective. It sounds simple, but it can burn up to two times the number of calories when compared to an unweighted [Read more …]

Sunset at Barbell Beach
Aging & Health

The Top 5 Reasons You Should Be Fit At Midlife

Are you Fit At Midlife? Here’s the top 5 reasons you should strive to be. Reason #1 – Diabetes is at an all time high A recent Gallup report shows that in the US diabetes is at an all time high. Despite the greatest awareness of Type 2 Diabetes in recent times, the rates are still rising? Why? Reason #2 – Being Fit At Midlife Seems To Reduce Cancer Risk Later A recent study shows that being fit at midlife reduces the risk of developing certain types of cancer. What’s more, it also appears to reduce the risk of dying from other types of cancer. Reason #3 – Fitness – The Fountain of Youth? According to this recent study High [Read more …]