August 27, 2020

11 of the Best Activities to Do on Active Recovery Days and More…

In today’s digest we bring you articles on 11 of the Best Activities to Do on Active Recovery Days, Larry Wheels Crushes Frying Pan With His Bare Hands, Tip: Try the Triple Kettlebell Push-Up and 4 Things You Need to Do to Get to a Single Digit Number Bodyfat – Fitness and Power. Hope you enjoy them…

11 of the Best Activities to Do on Active Recovery Days

For me, exercise is like meditation. When I step into the weight room or start the treadmill, I know that for the next 30 to 60 minutes, my only focus is to create a stronger, healthier and fitter me. Worrying about work deadlines and tackling to-do’s on my ever-growing list doesn’t enter the picture. It’s […]

For me, exercise is like meditation. When I step into the weight room or start the treadmill, I know that for the next 30 to 60 minutes, my only focus is to create a stronger, healthier and fitter me. Worrying about work deadlines and tackling to-do’s on my ever-growing list doesn’t enter the picture.

It’s easy to get carried away by the feel-good sensations you can get from exercise, whether you find it meditative, empowering, or therapeutic (or all three). I know, I’ve been there. But going full speed with your workouts every single day and never taking time to rest can backfire. Your body needs time to rest in between hard exercise sessions so that it can repair itself properly—and come back stronger. Plus, if all your body gets is physical stress without rest, you can reach the point of diminishing returns, or the point at which more exercise doesn’t result in any more progress.

“Think of it this way, if you don’t give your body time to adapt to the physical demands, it will never get a chance to ‘catch up’ and get stronger,” Lindsey Corak, a certified personal trainer at Life Time Athletic Boston and TEAM Burn program lead, tells SELF. But that doesn’t mean you need to avoid all activity on your rest days.

Planning an “active recovery” workout on rest days is a great way to give your body a break without being totally sedentary.

If you’re a go-hard-at-every-workout kind of person (like me), or you just hate the idea of taking a day completely off from exercise (also me), active recovery workouts let you get in some activity while giving your muscles and joints the rest they need to bounce back stronger than ever.

Unlike (also important) passive recovery days—where you’re sitting on your couch all day binge-watching Stranger Things—an active recovery day features easy workouts equivalent to no more than 60 to 70 percent of your maximum effort (low to moderate intensity). For example, if you’re training for a marathon, you can use an active recovery day as an opportunity to walk a few easy miles or take a gentle yoga class to work on flexibility.

Working at a lower intensity, as opposed to doing absolutely nothing, will help increase recovery from your previous workout by increasing blood flow to your muscles and tissues. Giving your circulation a little boost helps get nutrients (like amino acids and oxygen) to your muscles so they can repair themselves. It also helps flush out waste products that built up during exercise (like hydrogen ions and lactic acid) and contribute to muscle damage and fatigue, Michael Rebold, Ph.D., C.S.C.S.,, department chair of the integrative exercise program and assistant professor of integrative exercise science at Hiram College in Ohio, tells SELF.

Not to mention, dialing it down for an active recovery day can offer a refreshing mental break from intense training, Alberta-based kinesiologist and exercise physiologist Dean Somerset, C.S.C.S., tells SELF.

So, if you’re training more than five days per week, or you just hate the idea of taking a day completely off from exercise, consider subbing out one of your weekly workouts for an active recovery day. If you’re currently training three or four times per week, you can turn a couple of your “off” days into active recovery days to keep building strength and aerobic fitness even when you’re not working at your hardest. That being said, complete full-on couch-mode rest days (as well as sleep) are a worthy part of your training routine, too. There’s nothing wrong with taking days off completely, so don’t forget to listen to your body and give it a break when it needs one.

To help you plan your next active recovery day, we asked three experts to lay out some of the best options.

1. Tai chi

A low-impact form of martial arts, tai chi is great for building strength, balance, and total-body awareness. It’s characterized by slow, flowing movements, making it ideal for activating the parasympathetic nervous system, which helps our bodies calm down and recover from the stress of our intense workouts and daily lives. Research shows tai chi offers a host of aerobic fitness-boosting, pain-relieving benefits. For example, a review in the journal PLOS One suggests tai chi may improve aerobic fitness in healthy adults, while a small study of 72 people in the Journal of Rheumatology shows a 12-week tai chi exercise program significantly reduced pain and stiffness in people with arthritis. Tai chi is also a classic mind-body exercise, so you’ll reap the meditative, stress-reducing benefits while you’re at it.

2. Yoga

This tried-and-true recovery activity not only increases flexibility, but it also teaches proper breathing techniques and body control. In addition, an easy yoga flow also promotes blood flow to help repair your broken-down muscle tissues, says Corak.

3. Light resistance training

Yes, you can still lift on your easy day if you want to. In fact, performing high-rep exercises with a light weight (light as in about 30 percent of the heaviest weight you could use) helps stimulate blood flow and supply nutrients to the working tissue without straining or tearing them down, Corak says. Pick five to eight exercises to create a full-body circuit, and perform each move for 40 seconds, followed by 20 seconds of rest. Repeat for a total of three to four rounds. As a bonus, you can use these light training sessions to work on perfecting your exercise form. While light lifting can be a great active recovery method for some, you probably want to skip it if you’re feeling too sore from your last workout. Stick to the lighter forms of activity on this list (and try some of the things on this list to help get some relief).

4. Hip and core activation exercises

Your core and hips power your every movement, whether you’re getting up to refill your coffee mug or squatting with a heavy barbell. Keeping these critical muscles—which include your abdominals, low back muscles, glutes, hip flexors, and hip adductors—firing on your off days will help prep your body for the more intense work you may have planned for the days ahead, strength and conditioning coach Erica Suter, M.S., C.S.C.S., tells SELF. Simply put, keeping them working will keep them limber and trained to activate when you need them during your hard workouts. Consider these your go-to moves and sprinkle them throughout your day: bird dogs, dead bugs, bodyweight glute bridges, fire hydrants, and planks.

5. Crawling

According to corrective exercise specialist Dani Almeyda, M.S., C.E.S., co-owner of Original Strength in North Carolina, crawling builds full-body strength, endurance, focus, and better posture. In fact, a quick 5-minute crawl session is enough to challenge your heart, lungs, and muscles while giving your joints a much-needed break. “It should leave you feeling more refreshed than absolutely exhausted,” Almeyda tells SELF. Start with the baby crawl (it’s exactly what it sounds like) and progress to the leopard crawl:



11 of the Best Activities to Do on Active Recovery Days was originally published at LINK






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Larry Wheels Crushes Frying Pan With His Bare Hands

Someone as versatile as Larry Wheels has been known to put his skills to the test in all kinds of different ways. Recently he decided to try something new, by bending a frying pan in his bare hands. At this point in his career, Wheels has attempted or trained nearly every strength sport there is. […]

Someone as versatile as Larry Wheels has been known to put his skills to the test in all kinds of different ways. Recently he decided to try something new, by bending a frying pan in his bare hands.

At this point in his career, Wheels has attempted or trained nearly every strength sport there is. His unreal athleticism has led to him being successful in most of these endeavors, ranging from bodybuilding to arm wrestling, and of course powerlifting. He just shows time and again that he is ultra talented in almost anything related to fitness and strength.

Recently Larry Wheels decided to put his power to the test in a different way. He has been giving thought to moving into the world of strongman, and decided to try a new thing in preparation for that. Taking to his Instagram, he shared a video of his first attempt to bend a frying pan with his bare hands. He was able to do just that, completely rolling the pan like it was a toy.

“First time trying to bend a pan!
How quickly can you bend it?”

The activity of bending a frying pan is oftentimes one used by strongman athletes, albeit never in a serious way. Although there have been some pretty crazy world records set with this activity, so there is certainly some skill that comes with this activity. Wheels does a great job with this, but there is also no way of knowing the quality of the pan he used. Regardless this was a fun thing to see him try for the first time.

Larry Wheels is no stranger to trying a variety of unique ways to show his strength. Some days he might try rolling frying pans. However there are other days where you are more likely to see him in the gym using two adult men as weights for some dumbbell presses. The latter was the case a few days prior, where he did just that, as well as trying to overhead press them, which did not go as smoothly.

No matter what he is doing, Larry Wheels is always the type of guy to be entertaining to watch, while still blowing your mind. This frying pan incident was just the latest in a string of wild training sessions and obscure displays of his seemingly inhuman strength. No matter what activity he has planned for the day, you always know one thing: Larry will always deliver some fun content.

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Larry Wheels Crushes Frying Pan With His Bare Hands was originally published at LINK







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Tip: Try the Triple Kettlebell Push-Up

Most fitness challenges are made for tiny guys whose relative strength is off the charts. Try these specifically designed for big men. Most lifters have underdeveloped mid-backs. Here’s how to really attack that weak area to bring it up. Everyone is, yet for some reason trainers tell you that’s a bad thing. Here’s the truth. […]

Most fitness challenges are made for tiny guys whose relative strength is off the charts. Try these specifically designed for big men.

Most lifters have underdeveloped mid-backs. Here’s how to really attack that weak area to bring it up.

Everyone is, yet for some reason trainers tell you that’s a bad thing. Here’s the truth.

Getting jacked requires a lot more than just three lifts. Here are the big six lifts and the variations you’ve gotta try.

Build your calves, not your Achilles tendons, dummy. Here’s how.

Research shows these veggies deactivate the muscle growth inhibitor, myostatin. Check out the science.

Many pro bodybuilders look pregnant. It’s like they’ve got a six pack stretched over a keg. How does this happen? That question, answered.

Low energy? No motivation? Lack of focus? Feeling mentally or physically run down? There’s a supplement for that.

Five ways to control carbs (even if you’re lazy), how to learn any technical exercise quickly, and much more. Listen here.

EMOM sets are magical. They train the body to fire motor units faster, more explosively, and more powerfully. They even improve technique. Here’s how to do them.

Get wider faster with this special technique.

Jim Wendler’s 5/3/1/ program promises slow and steady gains that will eventually turn you into the strongest guy in the gym. And it delivers, every time.

This type of squat improves your form, saves your joints, and makes a great addition to your regular squatting.

Want to decrease fat and build muscle? Add this movement to your workouts.

Exactly how you perform a curl can mean the difference between having puny biceps and big biceps. Here’s how to curl to double your rate of growth.

For bodybuilders and strength athletes, soy protein is no better than water. Here’s why.

Nothing screams “strength and conditioning” like EMOM training. Here are two ways to do it.

Want to drop the chub quickly but still retain lean body mass? Grab your calculator and follow this formula.

A one-rep max on the bench press only measures a fraction of your real strength. Can you pass this more complete list of tests?

Bodybuilding is full of programs used by “enhanced” lifters, but most people don’t take drugs and can’t get good results. This effective program is for them.

It might be true that the body sometimes needs some help to detoxify itself, but you can’t do it with cleanses or enemas. Here’s how you can.

It doesn’t matter if you want to lose fat or build muscle. There’s something else you need to do first.

A new study says you should bench with your legs up for maximum muscle fiber recruitment, but are they right?

Are you strong and fit? Like, real-life strong and fit? Find out now with these exercises and strength standards.

Got some dumbbells? Then you’ll never miss a workout. Do this full-body plan every other day.



Tip: Try the Triple Kettlebell Push-Up was originally published at LINK







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4 Things You Need to Do to Get to a Single Digit Number Bodyfat – Fitness and Power

Most of you probably already know the secret to getting a flat belly. Some strict training regime and dieting are bound to do the trick. But, if you want to truly dice your midsection and make those hard earned abs to start showing, you need to drastically reduce your body fat percentage, which takes a […]

Most of you probably already know the secret to getting a flat belly. Some strict training regime and dieting are bound to do the trick. But, if you want to truly dice your midsection and make those hard earned abs to start showing, you need to drastically reduce your body fat percentage, which takes a much more rigorous approach.

According to John Alvino, a nutrition expert who works with body builders, you can aim to reduce your body fat to 7%. However, in achieving this goal you must to approach your dieting plan more seriously, tailoring your nutrition intake with outmost precision. In other words, you need to see food purely as energy source. To help you in this effort, we provide you with these four steps.

Balancing Your Macros

Gaining lean muscle mass and reducing the body fat to 7% is not an easy task, unless you’re a genetic freak. To achieve this goal you need to constantly monitor your proteins, carbs, and fats intake, making sure that each micronutrient participates with the right amounts in your diet.

The first step is to determine how much calories you should consume on a daily basis. The easiest way to calculate your recommended calorie intake is by multiplying you current weight by 15 (if you are moderately active). In other words, the recommended daily intake for a 180 pounds guy is 2,700 calories to maintain his bodyweight.

However, you should have in mind that this applies only when you are in the normal weight range. If you are overweight and need to reduce belly fat, you calculate your daily calorie intake using the targeted bodyweight.  In other words, although your recommended daily intake is 3300 calories when you weigh 220 pounds, if you want to weigh 180 pounds, your daily intake should be 2,700 calories.

The next step is determining how much protein you should eat. The recommended daily dose is around 1.1-1.2 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight. Apply the above described principle in calculating your daily intake. If you want to weigh 180 pounds, but you weigh 220 pounds, consume just 200 grams of protein per each pound of bodyweight. Having in mind that one gram of protein contains 4 calories, you’ll be consuming 800 calories from protein based foods. Thirty percent of your daily calories should come from fats. For a moderately active 180 pounds guy that would be 900 calories every day.  One gram of fat contains nine calories. So, if your projected weight is 180 pounds, you should consume 100 grams of fat.

Now, it only remains to determine how much calories you should consume from carbs. This is calculated by subtracting the amount of fats and protein calories from the total number of calories.  As we already know the other figures for a 180 pounds guy, the equation would look like this: 2,700 (total daily calories) – 900 (fats calories) – 800 (protein calories) = 1000 (carbs calories). Having in mind that 1 gram of carbs contains 4 calories, the daily intake of carbs should be 250 grams.

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4 Things You Need to Do to Get to a Single Digit Number Bodyfat – Fitness and Power was originally published at LINK