We are constantly hearing that we should be eating greens. Yes we all know that vegetables are good for us but do you know why greens in particular are recommended?
Calorie for calorie, greens are probably the most concentrated source of nutrition of any food. They are loaded with vitamins and minerals including A, C, K, E, folate, calcium, potassium, and iron as well as fiber and phytonutrients including beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which protect our cells from damage. There aren’t many foods out there that will provide you with all of this! They even have a little omega 3 fatty acids!
Here is a list of few leafy greens you can stock up on. Try them in a salad, a wrap, or stir fried. Because most these vitamins are fat soluble your body will need a little dietary fat to help absorbs them. So, add a little olive oil to the stir-fry or flax-seed oil to your salad but avoid using butter which is loaded with saturated fat. You can also add them to soups or steam them.
- Collard Greens
- Dandelion Greens
- Mustard Greens
- Romaine Lettuce
- Swiss Chard
It’s inevitable, I go to the gym to get my own workout in, and I can’t help but notice what people are doing wrong. In order to obtain great results you need a combination of resistance training, cardiovascular work, and a good clean diet. Simple right? Well, you need to be doing those workouts correctly too. Here a few mistakes we see over and over again.
Lifting too Heavy
Heavier doesn’t necessarily mean better. If you cannot maintain proper form, have to ‘jerk’ the weight in order to lift it, or cannot perform an exercise through a full range of motion, then the weight is too heavy for you. Lower the weight, and perform the exercise at a moderate pace using a full range of motion. Not only is this safer, but you will see much bigger gains.
Talking on the Phone
Seriously? If you are talking on the phone while working out, I can guarantee you are not working hard enough! Focus on the muscle you are working and make every rep count. This is what builds a strong, lean body, and a clear focused mind.
Leaning on the Cardio Equipment
Proper form holds true for cardio equipment too. Don’t lean over, hanging on to the StairMaster or elliptical machine. Stand up straight and let your legs carry your weight. By leaning on the equipment you are promoting poor body mechanics. If you find you cannot stand up straight then you have the equipment set at too high a level for you. Slow it down or lower the incline. You should be able to maintain proper form throughout the duration of your cardio session.
A trainer can answer any questions you have about proper form and can prescribe a cardio prescription at the right level for you. Building a solid foundation in proper lifting techniques and learning to stay focused during your workouts will keep you injury free and reaching your goals sooner than you thought!
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