Friday, July 01, 2005

Training - Why Bother?

What's the point of training? For anything? Whether it's
running a marathon, learning a new life skill, or furthering
your knowledge at work - is there a point to training?

Let's examine both sides of this issue. While training of
any kind certainly does take some time - is it really a
waste of time? Whether it's a physical training program, or
a class on how to manage your money, or learning a new
software system at work, training will certainly take time
out of your day that you could have spent doing something
else. But are you getting value for the time invested in
that training?

Say you've decided to enter a marathon. You're by nature a
competitive person, so you've decided you want to win the
marathon. What are your chances of winning if, in the
months prior to the race, you don't engage in a strenuous
and consistent training program designed to build up
strength and stamina? Slim to none, I would say. Or perhaps
your employer has decided to convert the existing software
system at work to an entirely new method. Without some
training in the function and operation of this new system,
you'll fall far behind your co-workers when it comes to
performing your tasks, thus losing value in the eyes of your
employer. Or maybe you've had trouble for years managing
your personal money and debt - without some training and
instruction on better ways to manage your assets you could
be stuck in the same downward spiral you've always been in.

A good training program offers far more benefits than just
increasing information or generating awareness of new
methodologies. Training can identify areas of weakness that
need improvement, offer opportunities for networking and
exchange of new thoughts and concepts, as well as expanding
horizons and developing ideas that were previously
unconsidered. Training opens doors.

But training isn't just about monetary rewards - it's
about building better communication skills, and learning how
to share life experiences with others you train with. A
colleague who undertakes the same training might become a
cherished friend. A training partner may just give you that
clever idea you've been searching for to turn your
business, or your life, around and find the direction or
focus you've needed.

A good training program can expand your mind, heal your
physical complaints or re-direct your life's options. Yet
there are those who persist in refusing to see the value in
training - seeming to fear the process or feel that training
is a waste of time. Nothing could be farther from the

Training benefits not only individuals, but companies as
well, by adding valuable skills to employees while at the
same time strengthening the capability and talents of the

Training should be a lifelong goal in everyone~s life - to
stop learning is to stop growing, and the person who stops
growing will soon be left far behind as the rest of the
world progresses. Those who cannot adapt to changing
conditions will soon stagnate and die.

Exercise Tips

To stay healthy of course! They've been drumming it into
us for decades now, in case you hadn't realized. For those
of you that have, you either take time out to exercise at
home or pop down to your local gym. This has become an
increasing trend due to the huge advantages that exercise
can have to each and every one of us.

1. Expectant mothers can partake in light exercise as
gentle as a 20 minute stroll and this have a massive
impact on her well being. Anxiety levels can be lowered,
insulin usage can be improved, weight can be controlled,
litheness and vigor increased and the birth can be made
much easier. They can recover far earlier after the baby's
arrival too.

Before you start any form of exercise chat to your doctor
to make sure you will not be putting yourself at risk. If
the doctor says go for it, start slowly and gently at
first and only when your body gets used to it should you
up the pace. Follow exercise instructions too as you could
end up hurting yourself if you do it wrong.

When you exercise always make sure you carry some natural
foods that contain sugar with you such as fruit or dried
fruit and protein foods. This is because exercise can
decrease the amount of sugar in your blood and if you feel
starving and don't resolve it quickly this could lead to
what's known as hypoglycemia.

One of the most important aspects of exercise is to pay
attention to your body. For an example, if you are
exercising and you notice your stomach becoming overly
hard, chances are you are working the muscles too hard.
Therefore, to avoid strain, simply stop to allow the
muscles to rest. Then when the abdomen becomes softer,
begin exercising again but without the same level of
intensity as before.

Other key things to know when exercising are that if you
begin to feel dizzy, lightheaded, or experience pain other
than workout pain, stop. A common injury seen with
exercise has to do with the back, especially if lifting
weights or twisting and turning. To avoid this, make sure
your movements are fluid and not choppy. If you are
involved with aerobics or a type of exercise that does
require twisting and turning, be very careful.

6. Don't exercise when it's boiling hot. If you're looking
to get dehydrated then go ahead but this should be avoided
at all costs. Always imbibe plenty of liquid such as
Gatorade sports drinks or good old water. Not just when
you have finished but preceding and throughout the
duration of your exercise too. Finally just remember that
if you're looking to lose some flab and change your body's
shape you don't have to pummel it with overexertion in
hard exercise. Cardiovascular exercises such as swimming
and walking can have just as good results and are not as
hard on your joints.

Thursday, June 30, 2005

How to Cope with an Allergy

Allergen is the name given to anything that causes an
allergy in a human body. In the presence of an allergen our
bodies send out histamine, which is what causes local
swelling and bumps. The cream or other pharmaceuticals that
combat allergies therefore usually contain an Anti
Histamine. Allergic reactions include a rash, itchiness,
coughs and general breathing problems.

Anyone can suffer from allergies. For some people the
allergies come and go, whilst others suffer all year round.
Of course some allergies are seasonal, such as hay fever
which appears in spring and summer. Some people can be
allergic to the tree pollens that exist in spring but they
might not be allergic to the grass pollens that tend to
predominate in summer.

Pets, detergents, medical products, foods... all these are
potential allergens. In various people they might cause
different conditions - asthma and eczema along with
dermatitis are all triggered by allergens.

It can sometimes be hard to figure out exactly what it that
is setting off an allergic reaction, but it is really worth
the effort. Say the reaction is worse sometimes than
others, then note down when you get it and try to discern a
pattern. Are you inside or outside when you suffer? Is it
mainly when you are at home or when you are at work?

One thing to do if you are having trouble finding the cause
is keep a log of your eating patterns - this is worth it
since food intolerance are tough to figure out. Also note
your symptoms in a diary - is it a sore throat in the
morning and itchy eyeballs at night?

Pets are not the only potential allergen at home, but they
are one of the commonest. It helps to know that the thing
that causes the problem is the skin pieces that tend to
collect an animals fur. This means regular pet bathing
helps out a lot. Cats, famously, do not like bathing one
little bit, so a rub down with a wet cotton cloth might be
an easier option... Keep them from certain key rooms, most
importantly your bedroom.

House mites are another cause and these little guys love
carpets and soft furnishings. It is a good idea to air
bedclothes well everyday and to wash them regularly. Vacuum
regularly if you have carpets.

Hay fever sufferers will want to make sure the windows to
the bedrooms are not opened, so to air the bed clothes
carry them into another room, and shut the door whilst the
window is open. Do not buy bedding that is made with down -
feathers are another common allergen.

If you've found that dust is the problem it might be worth
investing in a special vacuum cleaner as regular vacuum
cleaners can just stir up more dust. In the meantime you
can wipe soft furnishings with a damp cloth to remove dust
without stirring it up.

Unless you are stumped, avoid letting your wash dry within
the house. Steamy houses encourage mildew which itself is a
likely allergen for many. If you are left without an
option, let air into the house while the drying is taking
place. These tips and ideas may mean some extra tasks
around the house, but they will make it a healthier place
for all, regardless of whether or not they suffer with

Exercising For Diebetes Sufferers

Exercise is often recommended in treating type 1 (insulin-
dependent) and type 2 (noninsulin- dependent) diabetes ~
both as a stand-alone activity and in combination with diet
and drug therapy. For people who are heavily dependent on
medicines, exercise cannot replace drugs but it does
contribute to normalizing the glucose metabolism.

Exercise helps diabetes sufferers in many ways. Weight is
easier controlled when exercising regularly. Blood sugar
level, which is a major concern for all diabetes sufferers,
is lowered, thanks to exercise. Additionally, exercise
lessens the probability of a heart disease, which is also
very wide-spread among diabetes sufferers.

Also, regular exercise helps to improve one~s overall
condition and this way reduces the risk of long-term
complications. Regular exercise can even prevent diabetes in
people who still have not developed it but are susceptible
to it.

Despite the numerous advantages of exercise, do not
underestimate the risks. Let your doctor decide if taking
exercise is recommendable for you and if yes ~ what kind of
exercise will be less risky. One of the dangers for diabetes
sufferers are that exercise might change your reaction to
insulin or might lead to an abrupt drop in blood sugar
level, which is another risk for you.

In addition to the general advice for exercising, there are
some tips, which for diabetes sufferers are especially
important to follow. For them wearing comfortable shoes (and
clothes) is a must because the occurrence of a single
blister on the foot might lead to a serious infection that
requires time and drugs to heal.

It is also very important to drink water and fluids of any
kind, while exercising. Your body sweats in order to cool
itself and you need to compensate for the sweat by in-taking
more fluids, otherwise you can get dehydrated. And
dehydration is dangerous because it impacts the blood sugar

Depending on your physical combination, the choice of
exercise activities varies ~ from household chores, to
climbing the stairs, to weight lifting.

Usually household chores are risk free because they do not
require much effort and are no longer than 20-30 minutes a
day. Also, doctors often recommend various aerobic exercise
~ walking, aerobics, jogging, bicycling, etc.

Jogging and walking stress the lower limbs and are not
recommended if you have problems with the nerves in the legs
or feet. In these cases chair exercises, swimming, or
bicycling are suggested because they do not have the above-
mentioned disadvantages.

If you are young or do not have diabetes-related
complications, even strength training is OK. However, it is
mandatory that your doctor approves strength training. Even
better, exercise only in the presence of a personal
instructor! Strength training exercises make one~s muscles
to more actively demand glucose and have a positive effect
on the glucose metabolism. Besides, strength training
minimizes the lean mass and helps in keeping weight under

Are You Taking Diet Pills?... Be Careful

If you are a person who has struggled with their weight
and has a BMI, or body mass index, above a 27, the idea of
a pill helping you lose weight is very appealing. Taking
diet pills seem to be the quick fix to helping obese
persons lose weight. There are advantages to taking diet
pills, but you have to weigh these benefits with the
potential dangers of taking diet pills.

Some things you have to be careful about when taking diet
pills are:

~~There may be dangerous side effects and drug
interactions - There are times in which prescription diet
drugs are extremely strong. It is almost certain that there
will be side effects in the prescription medications, as
will occur. The problem is that some may be very serious in

Apart from the more serious side effects of taking diet
pills, we have the common ones that are: sleeplessness, dry
mouth, upset stomach, constipation, and irritability.
Another thing you have to be aware of is if you are taking
other kinds of medication, because there are certain drugs
that cannot interact with diet pills. Serious consequences
may arise from combining the diet pills with other

Another important tip is to avoid being needy of the diet
pills. Whenever you take this kind of drug, there is the
risk of becoming dependant on them. The reason for this is
that some diet pills contain stimulants which cause the
person to abuse them and, eventually, become addicted to
them. Ask your doctor for his advice if you are going to
take diet pills, he will give you all the recommendations
on the signals you should look for to detect problems.

~~It is possible for the diet pills to disrupt your
regular metabolism - Persons taking diet pills may find
that they are consuming a very small amount of calories,
and it happens, in fact, because the main purpose of
prescription diet drugs is to suppress appetite.

Of course this will help you to lose weight, but the
result may be that your natural metabolism slows down. When
this happens, the rate in which you lose weight also slows
down. This is the reason why the ones who take diet drugs
find that they lose a limited amount of weight when they
only take diet pills.

In order for diet pills to work for you, the first thing
you should do is talk to your doctor. Find ways to change
your lifestyle on top of the taking of the diet drugs to
help you lose weight. Regular exercise, changing food
choices, and regular check-ups with your doctor are great
ways to increase your weight loss success.

Bodybuilding Tips: Eat Right to Build Muscle

One of the first things that any bodybuilder learns isthat
your body requires the right nutrients to build muscle.
No matter how much you work out and exercise, withoutthe
proper building blocks, your body will not be able tobuild
the muscle that you want.

A bodybuilder's diet isn't just a matter of calories.It's
important to consider where those calories come from,what
sort of nutrients they're made from, and even when andhow
often you fuel your body with them. Physical trainersand
sports nutritionists have come a long way since the days
that they recommended a huge steak and a lot of pastafor

While the importance of protein in a bulking up diethasn't
changed, it's now only one of many recommendations fordiet
and nutrition while you're trying to build your body.The
focus these days is on total nutrition - a healthybalance
of proteins, carbohydrates and other essentialnutrients.

Instead, experts suggest splitting your calories oversix
meals, spaced out over the course of the day. Your first
meal should be immediately after rising, your last aboutan
hour before bed.

Your body needs six basic groups of nutrients:
Protein is the basic building block of cells for yourbody.
In bodybuilding, it helps repair cells, builds andrepairs
muscle and tissue, provides energy and helps regulatethe
metabolic processes of your body. While training, youneed
to eat at least one portion of protein with every meal,but
red meat is no longer the favored protein source. Whey,
chicken, fish and other seafood provide completeproteins
that are easily digested by the body and translated into
lean muscle mass.

Your protein should come from a low-fat, high quality
source. While red meat is fine on occasion, the added
calories and saturated fats can play havoc with some of
your bodily systems. Plan on fish - tuna fish is fine,as
is shrimp or scallops - at least three times a week. Eat
chicken, cheese, eggs or legumes as well. Don't forgetthat
peanut butter is an excellent source of protein, too!

Fats have an undeservedly bad reputation in weight lossand
nutrition circles. Your body needs some fat in order to
build and repair itself. The trick is in eating theright
fats in the right amounts. Fats break down into three
types - saturated, mono-unsaturated and poly-unsaturated.
The unsaturated types are the kind you want in yourdiet.
They add essential fatty acids to your diet that youcan't
get anywhere else. Fish is one of the best sources.

Another vital indredient your body needs when you'retrying
to bulk up and define those muscles is plain, oldordinary
water. You need just about 1/2 ounce of water for every
pound of your body weight daily to stay healthy andbuild
new tissues. The bigger you are, the more water youneed.
An easy way to be sure you get plenty of water (and yes,
you can drink those fancy new fruity waters if you want)is
to drink 2-3 8 ounce glases of water with each meal.

Your body also requires minerals - non-organiccompounds
that are found in plant and animal foods - to processand
rebuild itself. Calcium, magnesium, iron, manganese and
zinc are just a few of the minerals that your body needsin
order to function properly. The only way to be sure toget
all the minerals that you need is to eat a varied diet,or
to take a mineral supplement that includes therecommended
daily allowance of all the minerals your body needs.

Minerals are inorganic compounds that our bodiesdon't
create, but need. That means that they must be consumed
in your diet. These include iron, magnesium and zinc,
which your body uses for building strong muscles.