How To Learn about your body

Let’s face it, we tend to shirk physical activity or exercise every time the opportunity arises. We may have a membership to multiple gyms but are hardly regular to even one. We do not hesitate to throw some frivolous excuse in order to skip exercise. This negative attitude towards physical activity stems from the belief that one has to spend hours in the gym to improve overall health.

However, exercise is considered to be a natural antidepressant, and it can be a fun activity that can uplift your mind and body. Moreover, it is one activity that you can really enjoy. So, we at Buzzle, have decided to do our bit to motivate you to lead a healthier lifestyle, by presenting a few fun fitness facts.

Fun Facts About Physical Fitness

If you are able to keep your conversation going while doing a workout, it means you are not exercising at a high intensity.

There is no such thing as ‘ideal time’ for exercise. Exercise is beneficial no matter what time of the day you choose to do it.

Your daily workout need not be structured. In order to stay healthy, you just need to be consistent in whatever type of exercise you do.
People who engage in weight training and wish to quit smoking have a twofold chance of quitting the ‘cancer stick’ successfully than those who avoid weight training.

Men who exercise with their counterparts tend to stay motivated and workout with heavier weights. To put it simply, weight training with your female partner is sure to give excellent results.

Studies suggest that whenever you walk for an hour, you add 2 hours to your life expectancy. No wonder, it is said that walk a mile daily to be healthy and fine.
If you have a sedentary spouse, there is a high probability that you too will remain sedentary. Another study has shown that if your partner is leading an active lifestyle, there is an 85% chance that you too will lead an active lifestyle.
It is a myth that if you stop exercising, the gained muscle mass turns into fat. Muscle and fat are two different tissues that cannot transform from one tissue type to another.
As exercise builds muscle mass and burns extra fat, one can still gain weight despite losing fat.

Exercise helps to uplift one’s mood as it stimulates the production of endorphins, commonly known as the happy hormones, in the body.
People who exercise are in good shape and tend to share healthier relationships with their partners, kids, and co-workers.

While exercising outdoors, we tend to face resistance from environmental factors like wind, heat, and cold. This is not the case with a gym that provides a controlled environment. Hence, outdoor exercise tends to slash more calories as compared to an indoor workout.
A 5-10 minute warm up session raises metabolic rate, which promotes better oxygen delivery and utilization to the working muscles. No wonder, a warm up provides superior muscle control while exercising.

It is observed that the metabolic rate stays elevated after exercise. So, the body continues to burn calories even after the workout, which is more than the calories you burn during exercise.

Dancing is a fun gym-free activity to boost your heart health. The wide range of movements associated with dancing can certainly provide cardiovascular benefits.
A vigorous workout can cause substantial loss of body fluids. So, it is essential to drink water before, during, and after exercise to keep yourself well-hydrated.
Genetically, women do not have the capacity to develop a bulky muscular body as they have very less testosterone―the hormone needed to develop large bulky muscles.
Muscle tissue is found to be 3 times more effective in burning calories than fat tissue. This is because muscle cells utilize much more calories than fat cells, even at rest.
The working of muscle tissue is highly dependent on the fluid levels in them. Even a small drop in fluid levels can reduce its performance considerably. It is observed that while exercising, if a muscle loses just 3% of its fluids, its strength reduces by 10%.
Simply visualizing a particular type of exercise in your mind triggers the muscle synapses.
The only exercise where you need to stop breathing in order to do it successfully is swimming underwater.

A really good laugh uses face and abdominal muscles as well as increases heart rate. In fact, laughing 100 times a day is equivalent to riding an exercise bike for 15 minutes.
An average individual will have walked around 70,000 miles till he reaches old age.
According to the American Council on Exercise, calorie deficit obtained by engaging in 60 minutes of inline skating or running is more or less the same.

In case, you are not exercising daily, you may lose up to 80% of your muscle strength by the time you reach the age of 65.

Being thin does not mean that the body fat percentage is always normal. It is not the weight but the amount of fat that matters the most. So, people with healthy weight, can still have high body fat percentage, which can be detrimental to the health.
In order to get rid of an extra pound of fat, you need to burn around 3,500 calories.

According to Dutch researchers, people who consume alcoholic beverages half an hour, prior to their meal eat more calories. So, one can conclude that drinking alcohol before meals helps increase appetite.

Tomato ketchup is more effective in warding off heart ailments than fresh tomatoes.

Lycopene, a compound that boosts heart health, is found in tomatoes. However, this compound is better absorbed when it is present in ketchup.

Although yogurt is considered to be a diet food, one should avoid Greek yogurt when dieting as it is found to be high in fats.

Drinking beer in moderation can also help boost bone health. This is because beer contains dietary mineral silicon that helps strengthen the bones.

Fun Facts about the Human Body

To utter a single word, your body uses about 70 muscles. A smile uses 17 muscles, whereas 42 muscles are required to frown.
If all the nerves in the human body are joined together, they would cover a distance of 45 miles.

During normal breathing, on an average, a person uses 7 quarts of air per minute.

A one-minute French kiss can burn around 26 calories.
Of the 206 bones found in the human body, 52 bones are located in the feet.
You cannot keep your eyes open while sneezing.

A man’s heart can beat almost 6 beats per minute slower than a woman’s heart.
Fingernails can grow up to 4 times faster than toenails. The middle fingernail grows at the fastest rate.

A given quantity of blood pumped from the heart requires only about 23 seconds to complete a round of the circulatory system.

The right lung is slightly larger than the left lung. This is because the left lung makes space for the heart in the chest.

The food swallowed after chewing takes 7 seconds to reach the stomach.
When the urinary bladder is completely full, it is inflated to the size of a soft ball, which is slightly larger than a cricket ball.

Every time you gain a pound of fat, there is addition of 7 new miles of blood vessels to your body.

The brain receives electrical signals from the nervous system at very high speeds that can reach up to 200 miles per hour. Also, every second the brain gets flooded with 100 million nerve signals that are relayed from the sensory organs.

Tips to Becoming a Fitness Freak

It is easy to spot fitness freaks; their daily life revolves around what they like the most – workout and healthy food. Start talking to them and they will start giving you nutritional advice. They will never get tired of talking about training strategies that may work for you. Their lifestyle is similar to that of people from the sports field. They are strict about their diet and exercise regimen and very particular about their fitness.

Here, we give you some signs of a fitness freak. If you find them in you, the chances are high that you are becoming one!

1) No matter how late you are in office, you prefer to use the stairs instead of the elevator. You often talk to your sedentary office workers about the importance of taking the stairs and how it is a great cardiovascular exercise.

2) A good workout for you is one that leaves your body sore.

3) You have multiple pairs of shoes for different workouts.

4) You often browse through fitness websites and like to find what more can be done to make your workout interesting.

5) You are proud of your strong physique and want others to recognize it.

6) You are more interested in having protein shakes than cocktails.

7) You plan your busy schedule in such a way that you can spend the maximum time at your gym.

8) Carrying a heavy bag is a pleasure for you as you consider it as a good workout for your muscles.

9) Gym memberships, workout clothes, and subscriptions of health magazines are some gifts that top your favorites’ list.

10) You shun eating junk food and make the ones who have it, feel guilty.

11) While your family and friends like to read political magazines like ‘The New Yorker’ and ‘The Week’, you prefer fitness magazines such as ‘Health’, ‘Muscle and Fitness’, ‘Shape’, and ‘Prevention’.

12) Frequently changing the workout routine is your habit because you like to make your workout challenging. You are constantly looking for ways to make your workout more difficult.

13) Adequate hydration is your top priority and you often talk about the special fueling required before and after workout.

14) No matter what, you don’t miss your exercise routine and you are ready to get up even at 5 am to sneak a workout into your super-busy schedule.

15) You check your heart rate monitor more often than your Facebook account.

16) When it comes to celebrity news and gossip, you are only interested in who lost or gained weight and how.

17) You follow a 6-meals-a-day plan and prefer food that is nutritious.

18) You possess more sports and workout clothes than regular ones.

19) You love the gym and your idea of a successful happy hour is a good workout that leaves you gasping for breath.

20) Your fitness trainer quickly becomes your close friend and you spend more time with him than with your friends.

21) As you spend more time in the gym, you can easily recall names of the gym staff members.

22) Thanks to your frequent visits to the health club, you swipe your gym ID card more often than your credit card.

23) When thinking of buying a new house or looking for a new job, the first consideration in your mind is the distance of the gym from your work/home.

24) You often get competitive in the gym whenever you notice someone running harder on the treadmill. You challenge yourself with more training.

25) You always travel with your running shoes and a jumping rope to squeeze in workout whenever possible.

26) You would like someone appreciating your well-toned physique rather than complimenting your outfit.

27) You prefer to exercise like crazy to sweat out the calories, rather than dieting.

28) Your playlist consists of only workout songs. There is no place for dance music on the list.

29) Your general rule for makeup: think waterproof and apply minimally so that it does not get messed up during your workout.

30) Your Facebook page and News feed is full of training and dietary tips to improve fitness.

On the whole, if you are a fitness freak, you will never favor the taste of a food over its health benefits. You will exercise regularly, and always be ready to train harder for a fit and healthy body.

How To Lose Weight

Healthy weight loss is achieved by following a healthy diet, increasing your level of physical activity, and adopting good lifestyle habits. Period. But some lack the motivation or patience to follow healthy techniques to lose weight. Those desperately looking to get in shape will resort to any ‘quick’ method available. They may not realize that these methods can put their overall health at risk.

Here are the common myths or wrong weight loss methods that should be avoided. Make sure you do not make these mistakes when trying to lose weight.

Relying on Packaged ‘Diet’ Food

Nowadays, a lot of prepackaged diet meals are available in the market (Pure Package, Diet to Go). Here, you get a pre-designed packed box of breakfast, lunch, snacks, and dinner every day. As these foods contain less amounts of calories, they are claimed to be effective. However, what people are unaware of is that these foods contain preservatives, sugar, and other additives. Secondly, drastically cutting down on calories can slow down your metabolism. Products like diet soda contains artificial sweeteners and caffeine, which does more harm to the body than good. Substituting a balanced and nutritious meal with anything marked ‘diet’ or ‘fat-free’ food is actually not healthy. Consuming foods with high sugar can lead to diabetes and kidney damage, whereas, consuming foods with high amounts of sodium can lead to hypertension. Packaged or anything coming in a box is not healthy. It may be convenient, but the additives in these foods will prevent you from losing weight, and is not healthy either.

Eating Fat-Free Food

What most of us are unaware about is that fat-free does not necessarily mean low in calories. It’s true that consuming less fats can help you get in shape sooner, but packaged ‘fat-free’ foods are loaded with carbohydrates and sugar, and hence, are high in calories. Secondly, low fat foods like dried fruits, nuts, beans, dairy, packaged yogurt, salad dressings, pretzels, etc., contain high amounts of calories. For example, fruit juices (fresh as well as packaged ones) contain no fat, but have high calories. Therefore, consuming more than 1 glass of fruit juice will not help in warding off excess weight, due to the high caloric intake.

Relying on a Liquid Diet

To rely only on fruit and vegetable juice to lose weight is a wrong method, for two reasons. Firstly, by substituting your meal with only juice, you decrease the calorie intake drastically. It will help lose weight, but it can cause health problems like lack of energy, nutritional deficiency, headaches, stomach disorders, etc. We require carbohydrates and proteins to gain energy. Secondly, if you consume fruit or vegetable juices, but do not cut down on their portion sizes, you may still gain weight because of the high calorie content (read the aforementioned ‘Eating Fat-Free Food’). Watching your portions, following a balanced diet, and exercising to burn off excess calories, is the best way to be healthy and fit.

Not Cutting Down on Food Intake

Exercise plays an important role in maintaining healthy weight. It is true that exercise helps burn extra calories, but it will probably not help you much if you do not take care of your diet by reducing your calorie intake. If you believe you can exercise every day and eat to your heart’s content, you are mistaken. For healthy weight loss, you need to burn more calories than you consume. So, you need to limit the intake of food, else, the amount of calories consumed will exceed those burnt off. Now, those sweating out for hours together at the gym, did you know that extreme exercising is also linked to premature aging?

Using Sauna Suits or Rubber Belts

You may come across many products that claim to promote quick weight loss, like rubber belts, sauna suits, etc. If you wish to get rid of excess weight, you need to burn off fat. Sauna does not help burn fat, it just helps in losing water weight. You will regain weight as soon as you replenish your lost fluids by drinking water. Sauna suits induce excessive sweating, which can have harmful side effects like severe dehydration, loss of electrolytes, heatstroke, etc. Using a sauna suit is not a safe way to lose weight.

Having Time-Based Meal Plans

A diet that suggests you to follow a rigid meal plan is not a practical approach to weight loss. In the present day lifestyle, it is impossible to follow a rigid time-based meal plan, unless, of course, you are waited on hand and foot. If your diet plan says not to have meals after 6pm, it may not be possible every day, as you are working, have chores to fulfill, etc. Having specific set of foods at specific times is impractical and difficult. In fact, eating healthy snacks when hungry can boost your metabolism. Remember, eating when hungry, and only so much as to suppress your hunger, is the correct way to go.

Believing Skinny is Fit

Weight loss is usually recommended to those who are overweight or have a BMI higher than normal. However, once you get rid of the unwanted fat, you should aim to maintain that, and stop the unwanted fat from returning. Remember, being skinny does not mean you are fit or healthy. In most of the cases, being skinny is associated with fasting and starving, which leads to health problems like nutritional deficiency, headaches, stomach disorders, dehydration, etc. A skinny person can be as unhealthy as an overweight person due to wrong food and lifestyle habits. Compromising on your food and following crazy diets can be harmful. Being underweight takes a toll on your overall health, and is commonly associated with malnutrition, weak immune system, disorders of the skin, hair, stomach, etc.

Skipping Exercise

As mentioned above, it is a myth that only extensive exercising or strength training in the gym helps lose weight. Although there is no doubt that these exercises are effective, there is no denying the fact that other exercise types like aerobic exercises, household chores (lawn mowing, washing the car, scrubbing), or other daily physical activities like climbing the stairs, are also equally effective. Walking, running, jogging, swimming, cycling, etc. (along with good food habits), help in losing and maintaining proper body weight. A regular exercise regime combined with a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle habits is the ideal way to get in shape.

Starving Yourself
Cutting down on fatty and high-calorie foods is recommended in every weight loss plan. But some take it to another level, forget the word ‘wrong’ foods, and go on a near-death starvation diet. Our body needs food to keep going, to gain energy, and also to perform different functions in the body. Starvation deprives the body of its fuel. Along with fat loss, starvation also causes muscle loss. Secondly, as your body starts conserving energy, the metabolism slows down drastically, and fewer calories are burnt. This means, even when you switch to a healthy diet later on, you will have trouble burning calories. Did you know that the effects of starvation can take nearly a year to reverse completely?

Having Diet Pills/Drugs

Diet pills and drugs, like appetite suppressants, magic pills, laxatives, purgatives, etc., are used by some dieters to get in shape quickly. Many manufacturers claim weight loss with these pills, sans diet or exercise. Although this may appear very convenient and easy, it is not safe. Many diet pills contain large amounts of caffeine or appetite suppressants that will never make you feel hungry. There are no immediate effects of these diet pills, except a few side effects like anxiety, headaches, fatigue, lethargy, etc. But these pills are very addictive, and there are chances of developing a tolerance for the same. You will resume the lost weight after stopping the pills, if you do not follow a proper diet and exercise routine.

Sometimes, people adopt extreme weight loss methods like starvation or the tapeworm pills method mentioned above. It is not only dangerous but can have serious long-term health hazards. If you come across any bizzare or unconventional diet or weight loss tips, make sure you have detailed information about all its pros and cons, and after effects. If in doubt, it is always recommended to consult a doctor or a certified nutritionist before commencing any weight loss routine.

It is possible to lose weight with healthy methods. Following are the things you can do to achieve an ideal weight and maintain it.

What To Do

  • Follow healthy food habits.
  • Consult a nutritionist and understand the difference between healthy and unhealthy food.
  • Stop binging and emotional eating.
  • Do not skip meals. But, watch your portions.
  • Exercise regularly for 20-30 minutes every day.
  • Be physically active.
  • Follow a practical weight loss plan.
  • Continue maintaining a healthy lifestyle even after you lose weight.
  • Try to reduce stress.
  • Stay focused and motivated.

Remember a simple principle – as excess weight is not gained overnight, it cannot be lost in a short time either. Give yourself some time. Although healthy methods may take a bit longer to work, they are more effective, and definitely beneficial in the long term.