Weird Workout Hacks that Actually Work

It’s not hard to find hundreds of search results for workout tips when searching the internet. That’s why I was on a mission to find quick and easy workout tips that actually work, proven by scientific studies. Below are my findings:

 

1

Talk to Yourself- While most people get bothered, and slightly scared, by others who talk to themselves while working out, the results of a recent study might get you mumbling too. In a study published in the Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise Journal, researchers found that physical exhaustion, or the desire to stop working out, is largely psychological. The study recommends consistent and orderly self-talk in order to produce desired effects. By using statement such as “I am strong,” or “I can do two more reps,” you may find yourself pumping out an extra rep or running longer than ever before.

 

2

Grow a Milk Moustache- Chocolate milk, that is. While some athletes turn to a protein shake for post-workout, chocolate milk may be just as good of an option. Chocolate milk is a good post workout drink because it is a great blend of carbohydrates and proteins, all mixed into one. A study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition discovered that muscles protein synthesis is greater when milk-based proteins are consumed post workout, versus soy-based proteins.

 

3

Hit the coffee shop- This may be no different than usual for you coffee-lovers out there, but studies show there is a perk to having coffee or caffeine before a workout. Not only can caffeine help you burn a greater number of calories during your workout, it can also delay depletion of muscle glycogen, according to an article by the American College of Sports Medicine.

 

4

 

Activate your Glut-4- Doing 60 seconds of exercise right before eating and 60 seconds of exercise about 90 minutes after eating will activate your Glucose Transporter 4. Doing this will allow more calories to flow toward muscle cells than fat cells. Also known as glut-4, this naturally-occurring protein in your body can do amazing things with the excess sugar and calories in your body.

 

 

The most effective workout tips are those that work for you. Every person’s physical make-up is different, but most important everyone’s motivation for exercising is different. Some of the above tips may help you tremendously, and others not at all. Give them a try!

 

This article was authored by Michael Volkin, inventor of Strength Stack 52 bodyweight exercise cards and the all new Weight Loss Stack 52, the most fun and unique way to lose weight. 

 

Crunchy prawn & noodle salad

Crunchy prawn & noodle salad

This is for our Dairy-Free readers!

Ingredients

  • 100g rice noodles
  • 2 small carrots, cut into thin matchsticks
  • 2 spring onions, thinly sliced
  • small handful each coriander and mint, chopped
  • 140g cooked prawns in chilli, lime and coriander (we used Waitrose)
  • 2 tsp reduced-salt soy sauce
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • 2 tsp light soft brown sugar
  • zest and juice 1 lime

 

Method

  1. Soak the noodles in boiling water following the pack instructions. Drain and run under cold water until cool, then drain well again. Mix the noodles with the carrots, spring onions, coriander, mint and prawns.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk the remaining ingredients together, pour over the noodle salad and toss well to coat. Store in containers until ready to eat.

 

Five-Veg Lasagne; Iron-Rich!

This one is for our Veggie readers! Get some extra Iron in your system with this delicious 5 veg lasagne from BBC Good Food

 

Ingredients

  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 aubergine, cut into small chunks
  • 150g mushrooms, chopped
  • 4 roasted red peppers, chopped
  • 700g passata with onions and garlic
  • 8-10 lasagne sheets
  • 400g frozen spinach, defrosted
  • 250g tub ricotta
  • 25g grated parmesan (or vegetarian alternative)
  • 25g pine nuts

 

Method

  1. Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large, non-stick frying pan. Fry the aubergine for 5 mins until softened, then tip into a bowl. Fry the mushrooms in the remaining oil for a few mins until golden, then mix with the aubergine and peppers. Spoon half of the veg into a 20 x 30cm baking dish. Spoon over half the passata, then arrange a layer of lasagne sheets on top.
  2. Spread the rest of the veg over the pasta, cover with passata and another layer of pasta. Drain any excess liquid from the spinach and mix together with the ricotta and half the Parmesan. Spoon over the top of the pasta, then sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan and pine nuts. Cover with foil, bake for 20 mins, uncover, then bake for another 10 mins until browned. Serve with a crisp green salad.

 

 

Enjoy! Yummmmm!

7 Little Known Fitness Hacks That Will Change Your Life

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There is so much to learn about workout properly, it can be as confusing as you want to make it. However, there are some simple tips, tricks and hacks that anyone can do to make working out easier and more effective. Below are some simple fitness hacks that you can incorporate today to take your fitness to a higher level.

 

Eat more meals – Note I am not saying eat more food.  Break your meals into smaller portions and eat more frequently. Ideally you should eat a meal every 3 hours. Doing this will keep your blood sugar levels in check, keep your appetite under control so your less likely to binge on an unhealthy snack and increase your metabolism.

 

Tell the world - Tell the world, or at least your world, that you have a goal to lose weight, gain muscle, or even finish a 5k. Most people are willing to let themselves down before their friends and family. Whatever your goal is, telling your friends and family will keep you accountable to them and not yourself. Social networking websites are a great medium for announcing your goals.

 

The “new exercise” rule - Too often I see people in the gym doing the exact same exercises day after day. Your body has an amazing ability to adapt, and exercising is no exception. Over time, doing the same exercises over and over will decrease the effectiveness of your workouts. Make it a goal that every Sunday night you will search the internet for one new exercise you want to do at least 3 times during the upcoming week. Not only will this new exercise be a learning experience, it will take your fitness to a higher level.

 

Workout with a friend - Fact: working out with someone will make you less likely to skip a workout and more likely to complete a workout. So grab a buddy at a similar fitness level to you and be amazed at how far you push yourself.

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Reward yourself - This hack is especially useful for someone who can never seem to workout consistently. One of the biggest problems newbies have is they quit because they don’t have an end goal, or their goal is too long term. Make a short term goal, just a month or two, and if you complete your goal, say lose 7 pounds, reward yourself with new workout clothes. Having a short-term goal and a reward will make you more likely to finish what you started.

 

Exercise to Fast Music - A recent study concluded exercising to fast paced songs made people exercise harder and longer. So load your phone up with fast paced heart thumping music before you exercise to increase the effectiveness of your workout.

 

Active Work Meetings - Why does a day at work have to involve sitting at a desk 8 hours a day? A recent study concluded sitting is deadly, literally. Schedule an active work meeting. Instead of sitting at a conference table with others, burn some calories and take a walk around the building.

 

This article was authored by Sergeant Michael Volkin, inventor of Weight Loss Stack 52 and Strength Stack 52 weight loss and fitness cards

A Cool Trick to Redirect Calories to Muscles Instead of Fat

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Want a cool trick to help your body decide how to use those calories you just ate? Exercising right before and shortly after a big meal can help to activate a protein inside your muscle cells called Glut4. GLUT-4 is a protein that, when increased, tells your body to put calories into muscle tissue, instead of fat cells.

 

Here is how you activate your glut-4

Step 1: Do 60 -120 seconds of exercise right before eating (i.e. squats, lunges, push-ups, etc.)

Step 2: Eat a meal

Step 3: 90 minutes after your first bite, do another 60-120 seconds of exercise

 

Doing this will allow more calories to flow toward your muscle cells than fat cells.

 

This article was authored by Michael Volkin, inventor of the all new Weight Loss Stack 52, the most fun and unique way to lose weight. 

Gluten Free Parsnip Hash Browns

This is for our beautiful Gluten Free readers, we look after you too <3

Serves 6

 

Ingredients

  • 450g waxy potatoes (such as Charlotte)
  • 350g parsnips or other root veg
  • 1 small onion, halved and thinly sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 4-5 tbsp sunflower oil

To serve

  • 6 rashers of streaky bacon or slices of prosciutto
  • 6 stems of cherry tomatoes on the vine
  • 6 eggs

 

Method

  1. Peel and coarsely grate the potatoes and parsnips – if you’re using a food processor, attach the medium grater. Squeeze out as much liquid as possible with your hands and put them in a bowl.
  2. Stir in the onion, garlic, egg and season if you like. Divide the mixture into six and roughly shape into flat cakes. Heat 2 tbsp of the oil in a large non-stick frying pan and fry three of the cakes on a low heat for 4-5 mins on each side until golden and tender. Transfer to kitchen paper with a slotted spoon and leave to cool while frying the remainder, adding remaining oil as necessary. Meanwhile grill the bacon and tomatoes, poach the eggs and serve alongside.

 

How to Know if Your Diet is Plotting to Kill You

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This guest post was written by Michael Volkin, inventor of Weight Loss Stack 52 (currently undergoing crowdfunding), the most unique and fun way to lose weight.

How to Know if Your Diet is Plotting to Kill You

Is your diet actually bad for your body? It’s possible! Diets that restrict calories, and even some fad diets, can be harmful to your health in many ways. Don’t let the appeal of quick weight loss take trick you into harming your health.

A starvation diet is where you don’t consume the required calories and nutrients your body needs on a day to day basis.The fad starvation diets that are popular now include the Master Cleanse, the Ultra Extreme Calorie Restriction Diet, and the Clear Liquid Diet. Among other health concerns, each of these diet plans can lead to malnutrition. Malnutrition can cause emotional swings in the near term and liver and heart issues in the long term.

As an alternative to a starvation diet, you could try a healthier detox diet. Some of these include the Dr. Oz’s 48 Hour Cleanse, Clean Program Diet and the MediFast Diet.

But let’s be honest, diets suck. Here is a general rule of thumb to help you know if the food you have on the plate in front of you will contribute to your weight gain, or help you lose weight: The more humans have monkeyed around with your food, the worse it is for your body. By that statement I mean, is your food processed? Does it contain ingredients on the label you can’t read easily? Is the expiration date on the package past the next scheduled Olympics?

To lose weight, and keep it off, don’t overthink it. A balanced diet of fresh foods containing healthy fats, protein and carbs, mixed with a little exercise will do the trick every time.

 

We Made It To 6 Months!

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We started as an idea and a dream 6 months ago, and we’re live and kicking 6 months later!

 

Thanks to our readers and followers!

<3

Low-fat moussaka

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Ingredients

  • 200g frozen sliced peppers
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 200g extra-lean minced beef
  • 100g red lentils
  • 2 tsp dried oregano, plus extra for sprinkling
  • 500ml carton passata
  • 1 aubergine, sliced into 1½ cm rounds
  • 4 tomatoes, sliced into 1cm rounds
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 25g parmesan, finely grated
  • 170g pot 0% fat Greek yogurt
  • freshly grated nutmeg

 

Method

  1. Cook the peppers gently in a large non-stick pan for about 5 mins – the water from them should stop them sticking. Add the garlic and cook for 1 min more, then add the beef, breaking up with a fork, and cook until brown. Tip in the lentils, half the oregano, the passata and a splash of water. Simmer for 15-20 mins until the lentils are tender, adding more water if you need to.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the grill to Medium. Arrange the aubergine and tomato slices on a non-stick baking tray and brush with the oil. Sprinkle with the remaining oregano and some seasoning, then grill for 1-2 mins each side until lightly charred – you may need to do this in batches.
  3. Mix half the Parmesan with the yogurt and some seasoning. Divide the beef mixture between 4 small ovenproof dishes and top with the sliced aubergine and tomato. Spoon over the yogurt topping and sprinkle with the extra oregano, Parmesan and nutmeg. Grill for 3-4 mins until bubbling. Serve with a salad, if you like.

 

BBC Good Food

Foods to Keep You Full!

I hate that feeling of having just eaten and not even 40 mins later, I start feeling peckish – So I walk to the kitchen, open the fridge about 10 times as nothing in there seems like it will satisfy that peckishness…

Here are some foods that will fill you up for longer which will in turn help you lose weight!

1. Porridge

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Porridge is a great breakfast choice for keeping you full until lunchtime.

Oats are a wholegrain, which means they contain all three parts of the grain – the nutrient-rich inner germ, the starchy endosperm and the fibre-rich outer bran layer.

Top tip: to keep calories down make porridge with water or semi-skimmed milk and sweeten with an artificial sweetener rather than syrup or honey. Adding fresh fruit such as berries or a banana will add even more fibre to keep you going for longer.

2. Potatoes

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The humble spud is often seen as a dieting enemy, but research reveals that potatoes actually help to fill you up thanks to them being packed with starchy carbohydrates.

When looking at the Satiety Index and which 38 foods kept us the most full for two hours after eating them, boiled potatoes came in at the top spot, beating wholegrain bread, brown rice and bananas.

Top tip: as an alternative to chips, make wedges. Simply cut a medium potato into eight wedges, spray with a spray oil and bake until the inside is soft and the outside is crunchy.

 

3. Soup

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There’s heaps of good research to suggest that eating soup before a meal improves satiety so you eat less and take in fewer calories as a result. It’s far more effective – and a whole lot tastier – than drinking a glass of water with a meal to help fill you up.

Tip tip: opt for low-fat varieties, rather than filling up on rich, creamy soups. Good soup choices include vegetable, bean, lentil, mushroom, chicken, carrot and potato soup.

4. Eggs

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Research shows that eating eggs for breakfast can help to stop hunger kicking in so that you eat less for the rest of the day, and lose weight as a result. In one study, overweight or obese women who ate eggs rather than bagels for breakfast reported greater feelings of satiety during the morning and consumed significantly less calories, protein, carbohydrates and fat at lunchtime

Top tip: avoid fried eggs and instead go for boiled, scrambled, poached or make an omelette using a spray oil.

 

5. Oranges

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When it comes to foods to fill you up, most of you might think bananas would be the number one fruit choice. But according to the satiety index, oranges are almost twice as filling as bananas for the same amount of calories.In developing the satiety index, Australian researchers gave volunteers 240 calories worth of food – that equates to around 240g of banana (two large bananas) or 650g orange (four oranges).

Top tip: choose a whole orange rather than orange juice. It contains more fibre, and research shows that drinks don’t fill us up as much as food.

Thinking about all of these foods is making my mouth water….! :)