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Guide

10 FITNESS TIPS FOR BUILDING MUSCLE MASS

  1. give your body macronutrients, and your muscles will grow

The main reason many people fail to gain muscle is the lack of a balanced diet. To gain weight, you need to take in more calories than you burn during the day. The excess calories serve your body to regenerate and build muscle tissue that has been stressed during exercise.

The amount of excess calories is individual for everyone. If you’ve had trouble gaining weight in the past, try consuming 1.25 grams of protein per day along with 2 grams of carbohydrates per 0.5 kilograms of your body weight.

10 fitness tips

If you want to cope with a calorie deficit, make sure you take in the above amounts of protein and carbs at least one month before starting. This way, you are giving your body ample time to respond to the increased calorie intake. If you gain weight, then the body is getting enough calories. However, if you are not gaining weight, you should start eating more calories. We do not recommend consuming more than 1.5 g of protein per 0.5 kg of body weight. To gain weight, try consuming more calories, mostly carbohydrates.
2.eat at least every 4 hours
Getting the right timing for your meals is one of the most critical aspects when exercising and trying to gain muscle mass. Suppose you are trying to take in the minimum amount of fat. In that case, if you eat regularly every 4 hours, your body will remain in an anabolic state (muscle building state) because you are always supplying the necessary nutrients for their growth.

Eating every 3-4 hours is much more useful than eating 3-4 times a day in large portions. Have you ever eaten 1200 net calories for lunch? It turns out that the chicken with rice will climb through your eyes. It is far more practical for the body to eat 600 calories divided into 6 meals than to eat 3 meals of 1200 calories.
3.take BCAAs between meals and workouts
BCAA amino acids are a guaranteed method of utilizing the obtained proteins. They provide an immediate source of energy for your muscles, unlike protein foods or whey isolate. BCAAs enter the bloodstream relatively quickly. An immediate increase in BCAA’s will give your muscles the energy they need to synthesize protein.
Research shows BCAAs build and repair muscle. Increases protein synthesis, decreases muscle protein breakdown, and decreases muscle fatigue.

BCAA amino acids for regeneration

 Interesting is the American study The Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, which shows that using BCAA supplements 2 hours after meals , we prolong muscle protein synthesis. Although the study was done in rats, researchers don’t understand why humans should not take these supplements.

While we don’t have direct evidence that BCAAs support muscle strength and size, regeneration is essential to keep you exercising the next day, which is why you’ll build muscle, BCAA supplements contain a high concentration of the amino acid leucine, which is an essential stimulant of the mTor process and therefore muscle protein synthesis. Most supplements contain BCAAs in a 2: 1: 1 ratio – leucine: valine: isoleucine.

Leucine leads to the maximization of the mTOR process. To take 3.5 g of leucine, you need to take 7 g of BCAA 30-45 minutes before meals (2 times a day).

4.Sleep at least 8 hours 

We understand. With all these responsibilities and work, this point is very difficult to adhere to. However, lack of sleep can significantly affect your progress. During sleep, the body is relaxed and burns far fewer calories than if you are awake and doing something. Also, muscles regenerate during sleep, and muscle tissue is renewed.

Sleep for muscle growth

Another benefit of good sleep is the release of growth hormone. This hormone helps with muscle recovery. Note that a few hours of sleep deprivation can cause lethargy, irritability, hypersensitivity, and possible depression. This is enough to try to sleep as much as possible. Your body will recover and be ready for further training progress.
If you cannot sleep or restless sleep, try a sleep support supplement containing magnesium, ZMA, and Zmb, melatonin, or tryptophan.
5.Reduce the number of workouts, but increase their intensity
Other very common mistakes we make in training:
• doing too many sets
• we are not using a weight that is a challenge to our body
• we rest too long between sets
If your workout lasts more than an hour and 15 minutes, you are either doing too much exercise or resting longer than necessary between sets. Try to pay attention to this. Your shape will improve, and your muscles will grow, and you will spend less time in the gym. Instead of wasting time exercising, you can enjoy good quality food or sleep an hour longer.

Rest between workouts

Follow the rule: 16-18 sets for large muscle parts, 12-14 approaches for small muscle parts. Pick a weight with which you can do 1-2 reps without too much trouble. However, don’t put on a weight that you can’t even feel the muscles you’re training with.
As for the rest between sets, they should not exceed the 90-second limit. Some trainers recommend breaks as close to 60 seconds as possible. Then you feel that you are the most “pumping” and stimulating the muscles. The only exceptions are squats and deadlifts, and it is a good practice to rest until your breathing is calm. Exercise contributes to oxygen deficiency, which will be replaced when you catch your breath.
6.eat lots of healthy fats
If you find it difficult to eat large portions, help yourself with fat, which, by the way, is an excellent source of calories. One gram of fat contains 9 calories, compared to carbohydrates or proteins, containing 4 calories per gram. Thus, fats have two times more calories in less quantity.

Healthy fats for muscle growth

Your daily fat intake should consist primarily of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. These are oils and foods such as avocados, olive oil, nut butter, nuts, seeds, oily fish, salmon, and mackerel.

Add omega-3 fatty acids and fish oil. Focus on at least 2 grams of omega-3s per day (EPA and DHA). To help digest them well in the morning, take them along with another source of fat. If you stick to the recommended amounts, they can help you burn fat, balance hormone production, improve brain function, and even promote healthy skin and nails.

7.Don’t skip leg day

We’re serious. You risk becoming a target for jokes, your feet will be recognized by the entire Internet community by some “meme,” or you will look like an inverted triangle. Plus, if you don’t train them, you will lose even more muscle. Train them diligently at least once a week.

Don't skip leg day

Studies have shown that doing musculoskeletal-supporting exercises (i.e., squats and deadlifts) triggers a hormonal response that triggers blood circulation without testosterone levels and raises growth hormone levels. It can aid in the preferred remodeling of lean body mass. In other words, you “swing” while burning fat.
Many coaches say that if they don’t do squats or even deadlifts, they won’t feel as strong on other lifts or feel as fast progress as they do when doing them.


8.Find yourself a sparring partner who will motivate you.
This point is significant. Mainly because the sparring partner motivates you to be responsible and stick to your training plan, you’d better go to workout if you have someone to complement each other and help each other. If you miss a workout with a sparring partner who relies on you, it’s like disappointing a good friend. There are days when you don’t want to go to workout, but you can get over it thanks to this partner.

Sparring partner

A sparring partner will also help you stick to the correct intensity with each exercise. This is always the first person to tell you that you can do extra reps to do the exercise harder or do another exercise better. Last but not least, you will maintain the correct rest interval with your training partner. You must rest until your partner finishes the approach, then it is your turn. This way, you will be in control of each other.
The pace you set with your partner will be decisive for you. Plus, being motivated by someone who helps you expand your capabilities and make a real effort can make a big difference in achieving your results.
9.Be smart about food supplements
Nutritional supplements cannot replace food because their name originated in accordance with their purpose – to fill the nutritional gap. We advocate a nutritious diet, but we believe that supplements are often essential during exercise. The first supplement you should get is a high-quality whey protein. It will provide the body with a fast-digesting and easily digestible protein – ideal before and after training. Studies have shown that muscle gain will occur faster with whey protein support than without it.

Pre-workout stimulants

The second supplement we consider a must-have is BCAA for the reasons stated above. Pre-workout stimulants , at least for us, are another supplement that we consider “must have”. Not only will they give you the energy boost you need to train, but if you choose the right formula for this stimulant, your performance will also increase . They only need to be dosed correctly.

Remember that pre-workout medications must be used consistently in order to benefit from them. Creatine monohydrate and beta-alanine have a positive effect on your performance. On the other hand, if you want immediate energy , look for supplements containing caffeine or citrulline malate.

# 10 get active at least once a week

You’ve probably heard about this a million times. But if not, we’ll add again: you don’t grow in the gym! In fact, you will achieve the opposite. Muscle tissue is destroyed during exercise, and it is only when you are not exercising that muscles recover , increasing their size and strength. Therefore, we recommend that you take a break for one day . We hope you noticed that we are not mentioning a rest day. We are talking about outdoor activities.

Leisure activities for muscle growth

This day’s goal is to give the muscles and nervous system a break from massive strength exercises, thereby actively promoting regeneration. Active relaxation can range from light cardio exercises to static stretching. Massages are also useful but not required. This day’s challenge is to stimulate circulation, relieve muscle pain, or improve other life areas, such as cooking.

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Guide

How to Exercise After 40: Useful Tips

An active lifestyle can prolong health and youth. After 40, you can and should go in for sports. You just need to consider some age nuances, which we will tell you about in this article.

How to Exercise After 40: Useful Tips

Age changes

The changes associated with aging are inevitable. What happens to our bodies when we cross the line of the fifties?

• The indicator of muscle mass falls. This is due to a less mobile way of life and slower movements.

• But the indicator of fat mass, on the contrary, is growing. And the less active movements, the more fat accumulation in the body.

• The flexibility of the body decreases, so do not neglect stretching after 40 years.

• Bones become more fragile, and the body needs additional calcium.

• There are negative dynamics in movements’ accuracy due to the uneven strength of various muscles (for example, the muscles on the right limb are more developed than on the left).

All these changes are inevitable, but they can be slowed down so that the body stays healthy, strong, and beautiful longer.

How to Exercise After 40: Useful Tips

The benefits of sports for those over 40

Why can and should I go in for sports after 40 years? What are the benefits of regular exercise for the body?

• Certain exercises can have a positive effect on the flexibility of joints and ligaments.

• Strength exercises will strengthen the muscles, which will better support the bones and the entire musculoskeletal system and protect it from injury.

• Muscle strength will have a positive effect on the accuracy of the movements.

• Cardio training contributes to the development of endurance, has a beneficial effect on the cardiovascular system, and increases the body’s overall tone.

• Regular exercise can help you lose weight and prolong youth.

• Exercise helps you deal with spine and joint problems.

Results will not belong incoming if you follow the correct training system after 40.

The specificity of training after 40 years

It is quite clear that training at 40 in the same way as at 20 will not work. Here, extreme care is required to avoid injuries, the risk of which is increased by the changes above in the body. Here are some things to watch out for:

• The training program should be designed according to the indicators of gender, age, height and weight, level of physical fitness, individual characteristics of the body, and suffered injuries or diseases.

• The main goals of the classes should be to improve the condition of the cardiovascular and respiratory systems, strengthen the heart muscle, increase the amount of muscle mass in the body, reduce fat, increase endurance, strengthen joints, and improve flexibility.

• The load and training frequency should be increased gradually, regardless of whether the person has trained before.

• Exercise should include doing cardio (aerobic exercise). The intensity should not be high to avoid shortness of breath. Examples of cardio training include cycling, jogging, brisk walking, swimming, stair walking, dancing. For this purpose, you can use exercise equipment that is safe for this age, such as a treadmill, exercise bike, orbitrek (elliptical trainer), or a stepper.

• It is imperative to devote time to stretching, increasing the flexibility of joints and ligaments, increasing muscle elasticity.

• Also, do not forget about training to improve balance and coordination of movements. Pilates or yoga are ideal choices at this age.

• Strength (anaerobic) training should also be part of an active lifestyle. Their intensity should be medium; in rare cases – high, exercise speed should be medium. If it is not possible to go to the gym, then at home, you can perform strength exercises with dumbbells, weights, wall bars, or a special bench installation.

• It is essential to follow your exercise technique to avoid injuries and strains. Therefore, before starting training, it is necessary to consult with a trainer, and in the case of practicing at home, perform exercises in front of a mirror.

• Recovery after training is the key to the correct course of the entire healing process. It includes proper nutrition, adequate sleep, and muscle relaxation, for example, in the form of massage (this can be either a trip to a specialist or buying a personal massager for all parts of the body).

How to Exercise After 40: Useful Tips

Exercise system

The number of approaches in one workout can be different – it all depends on your physical fitness level. The optimal solution is to hire a personal trainer who will select an individual program and monitor the correctness of the technique. The rest between sets should be long enough to avoid shortness of breath or muscle cramps and cramps. Once every 2-3 months, the training program must be changed so that the body does not adapt to the stress, and the progress does not stop. Include all muscle groups in work without focusing only on specific areas. Combine strength and cardio workouts.

Fitness myths for those over 40

Unfortunately, many people over the age of 40 forget about the need for regular sports and training. Because of this, there are many myths and misconceptions around fitness for those over 40. We decided to dispel the most important of them to understand why the sport is necessary and how to do it right.

Myth # 1: Any physical exercise strengthens muscles.

Fact: Fitness activities like Pilates and stretching are great for developing and maintaining flexibility, but they don’t impact muscle building.

Myth # 2: Strength training can help you lose weight.

Fact: Anaerobic fitness helps build muscle that is heavier than fat. Weight can, on the contrary, increase, although there will be less body fat. For weight loss, cardio (aerobic) training is more appropriate.

Myth number 3: older adults find it challenging to work with dumbbells and weights.

How to Exercise After 40: Useful Tips

Fact: if you increase the load gradually, starting from 1.5-2 kg, then over time, you can bring it up to 4-5 kg ​​and even more. The same applies to machines with additional weights. The main thing is to adhere to the correct exercise technique so as not to get injured.

Myth # 4: Swimming is the most suitable option for people over 40.

Fact: For swimming to bring maximum benefits and the desired result, you need to spend about 2 hours in the pool, while continuously swimming in different styles. Not everyone can devote this amount of time and energy. Therefore, swimming is best perceived as a pleasant and beneficial addition to basic training.

Myth # 5: If you are tired during your workout, you must stop exercising.

Fact: Feeling tired is a sign of training effectiveness. It is worth stopping if you feel unwell, you feel dizzy, nauseous, severe local pain, or find it difficult to breathe. Common fatigue is just a factor to be overcome.

Sport is useful at any age, and after 40 years, it is merely necessary. The main thing is to approach training correctly and carefully to avoid injuries associated with age-related changes.

Dad pumped up

To cross the threshold of a sports hall for the first time when you are already in your fifties is a real test. A feeling of insecurity, embarrassment, puzzled looks of others … However, the daredevils who decide to experiment will be rewarded in full and will then be able to admire their fit figure in the mirror every day. Unexpectedly, 45-year-old Patrick McAlinan became a fitness fanatic. 

Adult problems

According to Patrick, training is much more difficult for a 40-year-old than for a 20-year-old. After exercise, muscles need more time to recover, excess weight is reduced more slowly, and more effort is required to build muscle. But the result is worth it.

Until recently, Patrick looked pretty average. He was never distinguished by relief muscles, worked in an office, did not play sports. But he completely changed in just six weeks, following a particular program.

Had to sweat

First of all, to overcome the inner barrier and understand how to approach the machine, Patrick hired a fitness trainer. This is not a cheap pleasure, but otherwise, nothing will come of it. Patrick has an ectomorphic body type: narrow in the shoulders, relatively thin. This type of person has difficulty gaining muscle mass. This means that work with heavyweights is necessary and, accordingly, good technique, which cannot be obtained without an instructor.

In addition to pulling iron, Patrick also does circuit training for all muscle groups and cardio series. So it gets rid of body fat and increases endurance.

Money in the body

The trainer calls his system “time under tension.” This refers to the seconds when the muscles are tense. “Either your body weight is used, or additional resistance is involved. I combine different methods and achieve hypertrophy [muscle growth] much faster than during regular training,” he explains.

Another new expense item for Patrick is sports nutrition: proteins, creatine, vitamins, etc. The high-protein diet has helped to gain muscle mass and recover faster after exercise. It was not easy when meeting with friends who didn’t deny themselves anything, but Patrick understood: there would be no result without a diet.

Health on a plate

On weekdays, it isn’t easy to keep track of your diet. While cooking healthy meals does not involve much culinary skill, it is time-consuming. Therefore, Patrick began ordering food through a specialized service, making sure to provide himself with the necessary amount of calories and micronutrients to gain muscle mass.

According to Patrick, such a service is expensive and can be done without it. Fitness aficionados usually carve out time on Sundays, preparing countless food containers and smoothies for the week ahead.

Patrick understands that regular gym attendance and a strict diet are not for everyone. However, he is ready to stick to his routine in 10 and 20 years. The fantastic result inspires him that he achieved in just a month and a half.

Seen enough

Theo Pettaras, 53, from Sydney, has accomplished a similar feat. Despite being busy, the Australian entrepreneur found time to improve his health.

Inspired by the example of his wife’s friend who lost weight, he managed to lose 20 kilograms, gaining muscle. Now he sticks to a healthy diet and goes to the gym five times a week, giving himself no indulgences.

Salad rushes to the rescue.

A person, even with ingrained habits, can change for the better. 40-year-old Australian Luke Baileys founded a chain of restaurants that prepare healthy salads and rolls in flat cakes. He was motivated to do this because after moving to Chicago to work in an IT company, he gained 50 kilograms in four years. On a foreign mainland, he ate exclusively fast food and was steadily getting fat.

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Guide

Post-workout nutrition for muscle growth

To gain muscle mass, you need to train a lot – everyone knows that. Obsessed with getting quick results, novice athletes fixate on “hardware” and disappear in the gym for days. Often, they forget that muscles cannot form out of thin air. To build them up, the body needs a lot of energy and protein. However, this does not mean that you need to eat everything, and the more, the better. Quite the opposite – you need to adhere to a special diet and diet. Particular attention should be paid to post-workout nutrition.

Eat For Anabolism: Pre- And Post-Workout Nutrition For Muscle Growth |  Bodybuilding.com

Basic nutritional guidelines for muscle growth

Proper nutrition during the training process involves adherence to the following principles.

  1. 5 – 6 meals a day – preferably every 3 – 4 hours.
  2. Eating high-calorie foods – up to 70% of the total diet. Muscle mass grows only if the amount of incoming energy exceeds the amount of consumed resources.
  3. Limiting consumption of fast carbohydrates and fats is better to give preference to foods with a low glycemic index and vegetable fats.
  4. Compliance with the drinking regime – you need to drink as thirst and a lot.
  5. Compliance with the balance of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats is approximately 35% / 60% 20%, respectively.
  6. Distribution of food throughout the day – portions should be approximately equal, while most of them should preferably be eaten before 17.00.

We take into account the physique.

Five SureShot Ways To Build A Chiselled Physique

Why do some athletes grow muscles by leaps and bounds, while others do not notice training results? Physiologists say that it depends on the somatotype and distinguishes three body types – ectomorph, mesomorph, and endomorph. Each of them has its characteristics and features that determine the possibility of increasing the mass. Given the following information, you can “trick” nature and achieve better results.

SomatotypePhysique characteristicTraining featuresDiet
Ectomorphlean physique, fast metabolismmuscles build up long and hardemphasis on complex carbohydrates, protein – 3 g per 1 kg of body weight, reduce the consumption of fatty foods, it is advisable to use sports supplements
Mesomorphnormal physique and metabolismfast visible resultreduce the consumption of fats, protein – 2-3 g per 1 kg of weight, any carbohydrates are allowed
Endomorphfull physique, slow metabolismmuscle mass is gained easily and quickly, but body fat is presentminimum of fats and carbohydrates, emphasis on proteins – up to 60% or more of the daily diet, do not use gainers

How much should you eat after training?

After an intensive exercise in the gym, the so-called anabolic window opens in the human body – a state of the body where there is a deficiency of nutrients – proteins and carbohydrates (therefore, the state is also called a protein-carbohydrate window). You can quickly compensate for the deficiency that has arisen with the help of food. And since the average duration of the anabolic window is 40 – 90 minutes, you need to eat precisely during this time. However, not everything is so simple, and there are several opinions on this matter.

  • To prevent further muscle breakdown, eat right after exercise.
  • You need to eat after 1 hour, during which the body will burn its fat reserves.
  • You need to consume only proteins that will help restore damaged muscle fibers.
  • It is better to give preference to carbohydrates, due to which the energy potential of the body will be restored.
  • You can eat both proteins and carbohydrates since the body needs them to ensure muscle growth. The main thing is to keep within the period of the anabolic window.

Any of these opinions have experimental confirmation and real results of muscle gain. And the only thing to consider is whether the person ate before training. If not, you should eat as soon as possible after class. If the exercises were performed on a full stomach, you could take your food intake time.

What to eat after training?

4 Steps to Speed Up Muscle Recovery After a Workout

For significant muscle recovery and mass gain, the body needs protein and carbohydrates. But it would help if you didn’t forget about fats either – their lack leads to metabolic disorders. Fats are obligatory for consumption; you just need to control their amount. So the post-workout meal for men and women might look like this.

NutrientAmount needed after exerciseBenefits and impactRecommended food
Protein2-3 g per 1 kg of weightbuilding material for muscles, maintaining metabolism and immunity, transmission of nerve impulses between body cellslean meat, fish, low-fat dairy products, eggs, legumes, nuts
Carbohydrates5 – 8 g per 1 kg of weightenergy source, building support structures, RNA, DNA and ATP, maintaining osmotic pressurecereals, coarse wheat pasta, fresh vegetables, unsweetened fruits
Fats1 – 1.5 g per 1 kg of weightenergy source, protection of the body from hypothermia, maintenance of metabolic reactions and the structure of cell membranesvegetable oils, seafood, oily fish

After a morning workout, when the whole day is still ahead, and additional consumption of the body’s energy resources is ahead, it is better to eat more high-calorie foods. After an evening workout, just before bed, you can limit yourself to protein intake. For heavy exercise, they can be supplemented with a small serving of slow carbohydrates.

What to drink after exercise

Still, mineral water, green tea without sugar, natural fresh juices, or compotes made from unsweetened fruits are the best drinks during the period of muscle gain—drink throughout the day, and especially during exercise, when the risk of dehydration increases. The amount of fluid consumed is purely individual, so it is better to focus on your feeling of thirst.

TOP 10 foods for gaining muscle mass

The post-workout food for muscle growth for girls and men should contain the following foods.

  1. Curd (low fat) is a slow protein source and one of the best foods for muscle growth. Cottage cheese saturates the body with vitamins B, PP, and C. It increases hemoglobin levels in the blood and strengthens the nervous system and bone tissue. Reduces the risk of developing atherosclerosis and obesity.
  2. Eggs are a protein source, healthy fats, vitamins, iron, and phosphorus, thanks to which muscles regenerate faster. Researchers at the University of Illinois recommend eating eggs to boost protein synthesis.
  3. Chicken fillet – contains a large amount of easily digestible protein, amino acids, vitamins, and minerals. The product is rich in magnesium, which helps fight fatigue and normalizes the nervous system’s functions. However, do not forget that chicken fillet is a low-calorie food.
  4. Salmon (mackerel, sardines) – contains a large amount of omega-3-unsaturated fatty acids, which reduce the risk of muscle injury during exercise and help avoid the characteristic pain. Scientists at the University of Washington are looking at eating oily sea fish to boost protein synthesis.
  5. Ricotta – Whey cheese contains high amounts of casein and albumin. Members of the International Society for Sports Nutrition claim that eating ricotta promotes rapid muscle building. British scientists are in solidarity with them, focusing on the fact that this type of cheese increases the body’s endurance and strengthens bone tissue.
  6. Whole Grain Bread – It contains slow carbohydrates that fuel the body and helps maintain its energy potential.
  7. Potatoes (baked) – a source of carbohydrates to replenish energy deficits after exercise. Experts from the Journal of Applied Physiology are confident that a small serving of potatoes after training will not lead to body fat formation and will be beneficial for the body.
  8. Quinoa (grain cereal) is a protein, fiber, amino acid, trace elements, and B vitamins. According to a study by American scientists, the composition of quinoa protein is close to milk protein, and the chemical composition of grain is indispensable for active physical exertion. (Quinoa can be replaced with buckwheat – the composition is about the same).
  9. Cherry juice – rich in antioxidants, anti-inflammatory, promotes quick recovery after exercise. Scandinavian researchers claim that cherry juice increases the body’s performance and normalizes blood pressure after exercise.
  10. Mate (Paraguayan tea) is an excellent drink that tones up and, according to British scientists, helps to recover faster after the training process.

What foods to avoid?

“Brutal” appetite is a good indicator of a fast metabolism. But do not follow his lead and eat everything. The diet should be of real benefit, so it is better to exclude the following foods.

  • Animal fats.
  • Sweets.
  • Beer.
  • Fast food.
  • Foods with food additives.

It is also important not to consume both fats and carbohydrates simultaneously – this causes the appearance of body fat. Both are a source of energy, so it is better to separate them – there are carbohydrates after training and a little fat during the day.

Sports nutrition for weight gain

In addition to traditional foods, sports nutrition – specially formulated supplements – can be included in the muscle-building diet.

  • Protein is a fast-digesting whey protein with an optimal amino acid composition. The recommended serving for fast muscle growth is 20-30 g immediately after training, before meals.
  • Gainer is a protein-carbohydrate mixture that replenishes the body’s energy deficit. Take immediately after exercise and take into account the amount of protein consumed.
  • Creatine Monohydrate is the optimal form of creatine that provides energy metabolism in the muscles. 3-4 g of the supplement can be taken neat, along with a gainer, protein, or 2 g arginine.
  • BCAA – a complex of three essential amino acids for the human body – leucine, isoleucine, valine, providing muscle recovery, increased strength, and fat burning. Take immediately after exercise or during a long workout.
  • Vitamin-Mineral Complex (Opti-men or Opti-women) is an optimized supplement to improve metabolic reactions. Take within 1 – 2 months according to the instructions. After the end of the course, take a break for 1 month, after which the reception can be resumed.

Can I eat at night?

Often, the work schedule interferes with visiting the gym, and training has to be postponed to the evening. But this is not a reason to give up food because the body needs to restore energy reserves to maintain natural functions. In this case, the amount of incoming energy should prevail over the costs, which will provide the desired set of muscle mass. Therefore, you should eat before bed. As a late dinner, you should choose slow proteins, avoiding carbohydrates, and fats. Low-fat cottage cheese is best suited for this purpose – 100 – 150 g is enough. The casein contained in it will be absorbed for about 5 hours, supplying the body with energy to restore and build up muscles. To enhance the effect and diversify your menu, cottage cheese can be used with low-fat sour cream or kefir.

Errors that prevent weight gain

If everything is done correctly, then the muscle gain will be noticeable at the end of the first month of training. If no changes occur to the body or the mass gain has stopped at the same level, then, most likely, one of 14 mistakes is made.

  1. Exercise on an empty stomach.
  2. Late meal after exercise.
  3. Failure to follow a balanced diet.
  4. An arbitrary diet.
  5. Lack of calories to restore the energy deficit required for muscle growth.
  6. Insufficient fluid intake.
  7. Lack of protein to build muscle.
  8. The insufficient intensity and load of training.
  9. Lack of progress in loads and monotony of training.
  10. Skipping gym classes.
  11. Overtraining (overwork).
  12. Lack of rest.
  13. Lack of sleep.
  14. Overstrain at work, frequent stress.
  15. Systemic use of medications.

Muscle growth mechanism

Human muscles are made up of water, protein, glycogen, lipids, acids, and other substances. Their development requires a balanced diet and physical activity. Under their influence, the so-called hypertrophy occurs – an increase in muscle tissue mass and volume. Thanks to it, the muscles adapt to existing loads, contract, and resist fatigue.

Theoretically, there are two extreme types of muscle hypertrophy (increase).

  • Myofibrillar hypertrophy – the process involves active muscle contraction and the development of their strength, without a significant increase in mass.
  • Sarcoplasmic hypertrophy – an increase in the non-contractile part of the muscles occurs due to the accumulation of protein, which causes an increase in their endurance and volume.

In real life, during fitness or other sports, muscle hypertrophy is a combination of two types of processes, with one of them’s predominance. So, myofibrillar hypertrophy predominates when exercising with power types, making muscles more robust, and sarcoplasmic hypertrophy is more characteristic of runners. While in bodybuilders, both types of hypertrophy are observed.

As for muscle growth itself (hypertrophy), this is a complex and multifactorial process that has not yet been fully understood. Today several theories are explaining its mechanism.

  • Acidosis theory – intense protein synthesis for building muscle is due to lactic acid formation, which damages muscle fibers, thereby activating the enzymes of breakdown and synthesis.
  • The theory of hypoxia – increased synthesis provokes temporary hypoxia, which the muscles encounter at the time of strength exercises. After all, lack of oxygen also damages muscle fibers, pushing their recovery and subsequent growth.
  • The theory of mechanical damage to muscle fibers – damage to muscle fibers due to stress- is considered a triggering mechanism for synthesis.

Thus, supporters of “destruction theories” are sure that the mechanism of building-up is based on the process of damage to muscle fibers. And the more they are injured during training, the more intensively they recover and grow during rest – the phenomenon of supercompensation of destroyed structures appears.

However, supporters of the “theory of accumulation” disagree with this point of view. In their opinion, muscle building occurs due to the activation of growth factors, which leads to physical activity. And the fewer muscle fibers are damaged, the more growth factors are produced, stimulating muscle growth.

The lack of a unified theory of muscle growth mechanism has led to the emergence of different approaches to the training process. Some athletes prefer to work “for wear and tear,” alternating between classes and rest. Others train more “carefully,” but without rest. The results of visiting the gym for both are approximately the same, which confirms all theories’ reasonableness and does not lead to a consensus. But be that as it may, but one fact remains unchanged – to build muscle mass, the body needs proteins, energy and rest. To compensate for their deficiency, you need to eat right and rest from training – it is at such moments that your protein synthesis is activated.

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Guide

Fitness versus age: how to train at 35, 45 and 55

How and how much you need to do in order to always be in shape.

We do not want to grow old, but we want to conquer Kilimanjaro and the hearts of Malibu rescuers at any age (play beach volleyball with children and grandchildren, of course, too). Each age period needs to choose the right nutrition and the type of activity. Fitness therapist Victoria Borovskaya tells what exercises to do and what foods to exclude from the diet at 35, 45, and 55 years.

35 years

What happens in the female body after 35 years? Quite profound changes: metabolism slows down; glucose tolerance is impaired, insulin resistance appears. Simply put, our subcutaneous fat is redistributed abdominal and begins to accumulate in the abdomen. That is why, up to 35 years old, women tend to increase in volume in the hips, buttocks, and chest, and after that, the hated centimeters are fixed at the waist. Due to the deficiency of male sex hormones, fat begins to be deposited on the back.

What to do?

The first thing to do is reduce sugar and salt consumption and start drinking, not tea, coffee, juices, lemonades, but plain clean water. Once you do this, four kilograms will go away by themselves in a week. Right, if you haven’t done strength training until the age of 35, then it’s time to start. It would help if you did it right: you can’t get off the couch and go to “pump up.” Most likely, problems with the hip joints are already making themselves felt, like pain in the lower back. It is essential to develop the pelvic floor muscles because these exercises aim to prevent urinary incontinence and organ prolapse. 

Training should be structured according to the principle of periodization:

  • retraction period, so that the articular-ligamentous apparatus, muscles, central nervous system adapt to the load;
  • developmental period (to improve their condition), shock period (strength, power);
  • When the body is recovering from the stress you put it before by building weights, the recovery period.

It will not be superfluous to cultivate the habit of walking from 15,000 steps a day because only non-training activity contributes to a good metabolism and the same weight loss. It is better to refuse cardio training to lose weight because, after 35 years, women are actively losing muscle mass. And if you want to walk along the beach in a bikini, and not in a pareo, the emphasis should be on clean nutrition and muscle development, and not losing weight to the state of a deflated ball.

45 years

After 45 years, you need to forget about sugar in food and drinks altogether. With age, the metabolic rate decreases, the level of sex hormones decreases, and a deficiency of thyroid hormones is added (the so-called subclinical hypothyroidism). You cannot continue to eat chocolates and rolls and hope that growth hormone (somatotropic hormone) will burn everything itself, as in 18 years.

What to do?

Stop tormenting yourself with endless diets, which, apart from breakdowns, stress, a bad mood, and even greater weight return by the boomerang effect, do nothing. Make it a rule to be active for at least 30 minutes a day and add strength training. Then you will be able to bypass the standard situation when a woman over 45 years old with proper clean nutrition and adequate physical activity cannot lose weight – it does not work just because of the provoked deficiency of various hormones, which will have to be corrected only with the help of a medical examination and a selected treatment.

Recommended workouts for this age should include exercises with a foam roller, develop and maintain the internal block (core muscles – a group of deep muscles that provide fixation of the spine), exercises to mobilize the cervical, thoracic, lumbar spine and develop its optimal flexibility. After 45 years, you also need to train large joints’ mobility, develop the muscles of the back and hips, and work with rotational movements. And do not forget about the essential thing – walk 15,000 steps a day.

55 +

After 55 years, the body’s maximum aerobic capacity decreases, the level of efficiency and endurance decreases, and the rate of recovery after training slows down. Bones become fragile, and movement slows down due to lack of mobility in the joints. And the most unpleasant thing is that muscle fibers’ function decreases and their mass and strength decrease.

What to do?

It is necessary to carry out strength training to maintain the work of skeletal muscles, increase or maintain mobility in joints, work on strength and endurance of muscles, introduce breathing and relaxation exercises, do stretching to improve flexibility, develop stability and coordination in various positions (sitting, standing, walking ).

You should not neglect aerobics, Pilates, or strength training. Still, it is highly desirable to conduct an initial fitness test to understand physical fitness and what aspect should be emphasized. Need to limit:

  • sudden changes in body position and movement;
  • strong slopes;
  • exercises with a heavy load on the articular-ligamentous apparatus;
  • racks on the head, hands;
  • bending;
  • prolonged static;
  • run;
  • group yoga, which does not consider the individual characteristics of the musculoskeletal system’s state.

Your training program should include exercises such as raises from a chair, squats against a wall, raises on socks, throwing a medicine ball, Pilates. Also, put a particular emphasis on training for women over 55 years of age on developing balance. With age, we all know-how, falls occur more often, are destructive, and after them, the body is more difficult to recover.

Super Intense Short Workouts: Effective or Not Very Effective?

Photo: Anon Krudsumlit / EyeEm / Getty

A set of exercises lasting four minutes helps to build muscle mass, maintain muscle tone and even promote rejuvenation, according to American physiologists. We figure out whether this is true.

What is “training for the lazy”?

From the very beginning, a catch awaits all lazy athletes. The authors of the course warn: you will have to study not four minutes a day, but at least 12. The effect of classes can be obtained starting with three approaches.

It is worth noting that some of these doctor’s methods, who also practice alternative medicine, are controversial by the American “Wikipedia.”

Then there are three hand exercises: lifting 90 degrees, lifting, and also circular movements. Each task must be repeated ten times, and then, without stopping, start the cycle anew. And so for four minutes. At first, it is recommended to do exercises without weights; then you can gradually add weight.

What is the use of a four-minute workout?

It is believed that such a course can motivate even the laziest to get off the couch. The authors also claim that exercise helps release nitric oxide, causing blood vessels to stretch and dilate. It helps lower blood pressure. As a result, the risk of blood clots decreases, the immune function improves, and muscle growth begins.

For many, this formula sounds motivating, but it is not easy to maintain nitric oxide in the blood.

Photo: Jonathan Borba / Unsplash

How to maintain nitric oxide in the blood?

First of all, you should follow a diet and consume vegetables with a high content of nitrates (nitric acid salts): celery, beets, spinach, various types of salads, namely watercress, arugula, lettuce. Nitrates in vegetables do not harm the body but, on the contrary, help to restore nitric oxide.

However, these are unstable molecules that degrade rapidly in the bloodstream, so their levels must be maintained continuously. This can be done with antioxidants that prevent nitric oxide breakdown. The substance is found in the same vegetables and stimulated by physical activity.

According to a study supported by the Japanese government, nitric oxide production benefits can be seen after ten weeks with 30 minutes of training at least three times a week.

Photo: Andrew Tanglao / Unsplash

How much exercise do you need to stay fit?

According to the WHO recommendations, to be in good shape, a person aged 18–64 years should devote 150 minutes a week to moderate physical activity and train intensively for 75 minutes. Of course, it is necessary to allocate this time—for example, 20 minutes of brisk walking plus ten minutes of running.

In theory, if you combine intense short workouts of 12 minutes a day with other physical activity, it won’t get any worse. However, there are some subtleties here.

Expert comments

Alexandra Vanzhula,

-medical-gymnastics methodologist

“All people have different body types. This includes weight, sex, age, and even character – I mean mobility, energy, or, conversely, phlegm. Any question must be approached consciously and understand what exactly you are capable of. On the one hand, the recommendation to exercise at least a little every day sounds reasonable. On the other hand, it is not clear what results in such training will lead to different categories of people: a 20-year-old girl, a 30-year-old woman after giving birth, or a 70-year-old man. Plus, I am against regular squats for untrained people because they put a lot of stress on the knees. “

Vadim Balyuk,

-certified personal trainer and nutritionist. Specialization: recovery from injuries, preparation for stress, training of amateurs and athletes in running, hockey, and tennis. Experience in the fitness industry for over 15 years

“If a person has never done anything and any training is difficult for him in terms of strength, motivation, time or knowledge, any short activity will be more useful than nothing. What effect do short workouts have on the body? Tonic. A four-minute load activates the central nervous system, brings it into a state of readiness for reaction, attention, and action. Therefore, if a person falls asleep at the computer at the working day’s height, a short activity will bring him some benefit. More significant results should not be expected.

Building muscle mass implies stressful quality, sufficient muscle training, the correct phase of its nutrition, and subsequent recovery. The saying “Exercise, eat, sleep” accurately describes this multifactorial system. It would seem, what is not training three times a day for four minutes? No, the muscle needs quality stress. Growth requires a load that will not be maximum but close to maximum.

I note the plus of this system: the latest research on muscle growth shows a high probability of accumulation of the training effect during the day. That is if you want a gluteus maximus or biceps, like Schwarzenegger’s, but time is running out, make a couple of approaches in the morning, a couple in the afternoon, a couple in the evening. In a daily cycle, this will have a positive effect. However, in addition to sets of four minutes, you will need additional weight – weights.

Takeaway: You can train briefly and several times a day, but if you want to get more effect, don’t try to shorten the training time.

How much do you need to study? If we are talking about “quiet” goals (weight loss and increased fitness), three times a week for 60-90 minutes is enough. “

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More fun together! What types of group classes are there in gyms

The larger the fitness club, the more diverse the choice of directions for group programs in it. Often in different clubs, especially online, the same lessons are called differently, although this does not change the essence of the lessons. And sometimes it is difficult for a beginner to understand this variety. To decide where to go, you must first understand what classes of lessons are in general.

Simply put, group classes are divided into aerobic, strength, mixed, dance and low-impact. Each direction has its specifics, which must be taken into account if you want to achieve some specific results, and not just maintain the general tone of the body.

Aerobic lessons

These are dynamic activities with music. As a rule, this includes a number of basic movements that are combined into ligaments, but this largely depends on the specific class. More often, women attend such lessons, but men do not bypass aerobics either. Such activities have several advantages at once:

  • motivate better, because you train in a group and always with a coach;
  • it is much more fun and more interesting than training on cardiovascular equipment;
  • coordination of movements develops better;
  • It is an effective way to deal with excess weight.

It is essential to understand that if you are a beginner, you need to start with beginners’ lessons. It was not for nothing that I immediately said that in different networks, the same lessons could be called differently: there are a large number of aerobics options – from simple movements on the floor to step aerobics, as well as lessons with elements of percussion technique (for example, tai-bo ) or advanced activities, such as cycling (imitation of a bicycle race on special simulators).

Therefore, before signing up for a lesson (even if the name seems familiar to you), be sure to consult with the club’s manager or fitness consultant. Find out what kind of exercises are included in the lesson and find out if it is right for you.

Strength lessons

Aimed at developing muscles, increasing their size, and training endurance and strength, the lessons are held both with special equipment (barbells, dumbbells, twine) and with your body weight. In strength lessons, the technique for performing each exercise is essential because additional burdening can cause serious injury if you barge. Therefore, if you are a beginner, then choose lessons for beginners.

It is also essential to understand that strength classes do not entirely replace training directly in the gym. As a rule, they work with small weights in group lessons, but with frequent repetitions (20 or more in one approach), and this mode of work will not lead to a severe increase in muscle mass, which is suitable only for girls who do not need large muscle mass. But for men who would like to see more muscle on themselves, this lesson will not work.

Mixed workouts

These activities combine cardiovascular training, full-body muscle training with additional equipment, and increased calorie burn. One of the most popular types of such lessons is “functional training,” when exercises are performed in which a large number of muscles are simultaneously involved in the work.

In other words, you work not only the primary muscle that the exercise is aimed at but also the so-called stabilizing muscles, which increases the effectiveness of the training. These activities include circuit training, interval training, TRX loops, and for the most advanced, cross-fit, famous worldwide.

Dance classes

Classes that help lose weight and develop coordination and allow a person to train with pleasure, and you can also learn something new from them. By the way, it is not uncommon for fitness club visitors to become good dancers! But here, too, you need to understand that the lessons are different – for people with diverse backgrounds. As a rule, if a client wants to start practicing at a more profound level, he goes to special dance schools because fitness clubs are still more focused on training to maintain health.

Low impact workouts

These are classes with no sudden, intense movements and shock load on the joints and spine. Such training is attended by entirely different categories of people, especially since some of the areas are training and a particular philosophy. This includes, for example, yoga classes. Pilates is suitable for people who have problems with the spine and coordination; these exercises will also appeal to those who like calm movements and static load.

Also, low-impact lessons include stretching exercises – stretching. And joint gymnastics is ideal for older people because it is with age that the joints’ mobility is impaired.

DEADLIFTS – WHAT MISTAKES WE MAKE MOST OFTEN AND HOW TO AVOID THEM

What kind of workout would it be if there was no deadlift in it? Not only do you use an extensive range of muscles, but you also bring many health and fitness benefits. Find out why the deadlift is considered one of the best exercises, its varieties, and what mistakes to avoid when doing it.

What is a deadlift?

The deadlift is the best exercise that everyone should include in their training plan. By doing this, you will increase your strength and strengthen a large number of muscles, strengthen your legs and buttocks, improve agility, and eliminate back pain or plate damage. It is a  multifunctional exercise with many benefits if you do it correctly and without unnecessary mistakes. Also, you only need a two-handed dumbbell to do it. You can also use exercise grips or exercise gloves for better grip and protection for your hands.

What is deadlift?

Deadlift Benefits

There are a number of benefits and benefits of doing deadlifts that you may not even have known about. For example, its execution: 

  • promotes fat burning
  • improves posture
  • involves several muscle groups at once
  • increases the strength you use outside the gym
  • increases arm strength
  • increases hormone levels
  • improves your condition
  • prevents injury while doing other exercises
  • strengthens leg muscles

What muscles do you strengthen while doing the deadlift?

One of the main benefits of the deadlift is its overall effect on multi-muscle growth. Deadlifts are similar to squats because they are also complex exercises that focus on an extensive range of muscles

The muscles that deadlift targets:

  • quadriceps
  • biceps
  • caviar
  • sciatica and associated muscles
  • hips
  • forearms
  • trapeze
  • shoulders
  • shoulder blades
What muscles do you train while doing the deadlift?

Correct deadlift technique

To complete the deadlift, you need a standard two-handed barbell. Beginners are advised not to add any or only minimal weights to avoid unnecessary injury. The importance of the load used should depend on your condition. 

To do the correct deadlift:

  1. Place the barbell on the ground and stand next to it so that the tibia is almost touching the barbell.
  2. Maintain a stance shoulder-width apart. Toes point forward.
  3. Lean forward and grab the barbell. Here you can use two grip methods – hold the bar with both hands, palms down, or use an alternate grip with one palm facing up and the other down. The grip of the arms should be slightly wider than the position of the legs.
  4. Leaning forward, slightly push your knees and hips back.
  5. Keep your back straight when lifting the bar from the ground.
  6. Use your leg muscles, not your back, to lift the bar. Keep your head straight. Never lift it.
  7. When you reach the final standing position, swing your hips back, lower your shoulder blades, and contract your sciatic muscles.
  8. The bar should remain below or at the hips’ level, and the arms and back should be extended.
  9. Don’t move your knees in the final phase.
  10. Then return to the starting position, keeping your back straight and pushing back your hips. The bar should still touch the ground.
  11. Inhale from the starting position and exhale in the final standing position. It is important to breathe through your belly, not your chest.

Deadlift options

In the previous chapter, we introduced you to the correct technique for performing the classic deadlift. If you master his technique 100%, nothing prevents you from incorporating more complex options slightly into your training plan; make sure to diversify your workouts. 

Romanian deadlift

It is similar to the classic deadlift but differs from it in a few key ways. First, we use a lot more hamstrings in the Romanian deadlift than in the classic one. Its Romanian version focuses on repetition. Simultaneously, the Romanian deadlift does not start from a position where the bar is on the ground but is in a raised position, for example, in a multipass. In the case of the classic deadlift, we also place the bar entirely on the ground. In the Romanian case, you stop the bar above the ground so that you can feel the hamstrings as much as possible.

The most common mistakes when doing a deadlift

The benefits mentioned above cannot be achieved if you do not perform the deadlift correctly. In the previous chapter, we covered the correct technique for doing this exercise. However, some practitioners continuously make mistakes that open the way to their goal. Therefore, we looked at the most common mistakes that athletes make when performing deadlifts. 

You are standing too far from the bar.

To perform the deadlift correctly and include all the necessary muscles, you must maintain a strict stance. Do not stray too far from the bar, or you may cause unpleasant injuries or back pain. At the same time, you must place the barbell on the ground exactly where you raised it in the initial phase. Do not put it too far from the tibia, or you may not start the exercise again correctly.

The most common mistakes when doing deadlift

You squat when lifting dumbbells

The deadlift is similar to the squat, but it is not a form of the squat. Both exercises use the same or similar muscles, which usually have the same effect – strengthening the legs and sciatic muscles. However, this, of course, does not mean that you should squat in the deadlift. Many people tend to keep their backs perpendicular to the ground when lifting dumbbells, typical of weighted squats. During the deadlift, the end should always be flat and not perpendicular to the ground. At the same time, when the bar is placed on the ground, it does not go into a full squat., you stop when the bar touches the ground. You don’t make any additional downward movements.

Do not place the barbell entirely on the ground.

A common problem with the classic deadlift. The bar should still touch the ground, except for the Romanian deadlift. If you don’t place the barbell on the floor, you may strain your back, lumbar, and knees too much due to the barbell’s weight. You can then cause unpleasant injuries, such as breaking a plate, blocking vertebrae, or dislocating your knee.

Don’t stretch before doing deadlifts.

Before doing the deadlift, you should completely abandon static stretching. It can do you more harm than good in the form of unpleasant trauma. Therefore, you should focus on dynamic stretching such as squats, lunges, or light running.

Don't stretch before doing deadlifts

You have a round or arched back.

It is essential to maintain a straight, protruding, or neutral back position when performing the deadlift. Many trainees tend to tilt their backs forward or backward. These are the so-called kyphotic position (round back) and hyper-exposed position (protruding chest and inwardly curved back). There is a high risk of injury in these positions.

Do not pull your shoulder blades back.

Pulling your shoulder blades together will help keep your spine in a neutral position. When the shoulders bulge out ( relax forward), the range is weakened and will be much easier to bend and round.

You jerk the barbell.

The lighter the barbell is, the more often this problem occurs. Many people tend to jerk it when lifting the bar as if they want to do the exercises primarily for the biceps or triceps. However, this is the wrong technique. The arms holding the bar should always remain in the same position – arms extended at the forearms and shoulders. Therefore, there is no need to tear the barbell or lift it higher.

You have a bad eccentric phase.

As mentioned above, one of the most common mistakes when doing deadlifts is people’s tendency to squat. For the most part, this is not intentional and can also cause an unconscious return to the starting position. It could also be because the knees bend too early. Bend them only when you return the bar to the ground, and it is already below your knees. If you start bending your knees when the bar is over them, you will automatically put it in the wrong position and be far from your feet.

What do you think? Is it possible to love this exercise even more? Due to its benefits and the wide range of muscle parts involved, the deadlift is undoubtedly one of the best strength exercises. Are you incorporating deadlifts into your training plan? Share your impressions of this exercise in the comments. If you liked the article, don’t forget to share it with your gym friends.

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At 50, everything is just beginning: how to train if you are not already young

Social network users in July actively discussed the dance of the millionaire, Italian Gianluca Vacca, with his young wife, Georgia Gabriela. And, perhaps, this dance would not have attracted much attention if not for Gianluca himself, who at forty-nine merely looks amazing. Absolute originality distinguishes its plasticity and ability to move to deserve special attention, and the dance itself. The figure of Gianluca, undoubtedly, causes the envy of many men, even younger ones, especially since most people associate the rich with fat, clumsy men, on an expensive yacht surrounded by young models. For information on how to keep fit if you are not 20 years old, read the article by the m24.ru columnist, fitness trainer and TV presenter Eduard Kanevsky.

It is people like Gianluca who break stereotypes. His instagram has a lot of photos of “a beautiful life”, a happy family, tattoos, but there are photos and videos from his workouts, including in the gym. Regular training, proper nutrition and proper motivation, this is his secret of youth – it cannot be otherwise. This means that absolutely every man can look the same and even better if he changes his lifestyle – watching TV with a bottle of beer – for an evening run in the park.

And there is no connection with the prosperity of the hero of my article and his physical form, because for regular training sometimes you don’t even need any equipment or specialized gyms at all, the main problem of most people is laziness.

But how to start training if the last time you were in the stadium or the gym was five, ten, or maybe someone twenty years ago? Or never really did? How to start training if you are far from twenty years old, and, perhaps, like the hero of this article, already under 50 years old? About this, in this article, which is explicitly dedicated to men aged forty plus. But young children also have something to learn from it, because of not only adults “start” themselves.

Where to begin?

If you have decided to take up your figure finally, first you need to understand what your health is. It is no secret that a sedentary lifestyle, physical inactivity, as well as improper diet, lead to serious health problems, including, from the side of the cardiovascular system, digestive organs, musculoskeletal system and so on. Therefore, I recommend going through the adequate old medical examination without fail to everyone who finally decided to take care of themselves. If you are obese, I recommend that you look into the office of a nutritionist, since it is obesity that can give severe restrictions to specific physical activity. Also, without fail, you will need a doctor’s consultation – LFK. The more weight you have, the more rules you have and they must be taken into account when planning your workouts.

First trainings

There is nothing worse than a quick result. Moreover, an immediate result often backfires. This is especially true for people who want to lose weight. In dietetics, this is called the “yoyo effect”, when a person, using incorrect diets or even starvation, abruptly loses tens of extra pounds, and then, breaking down on food, adds more than he lost. Even if you decide to lose weight through physical activity or want to gain muscle mass, also with their help, and you are no longer 18, do not strive for a noticeable result in a short time at all. You can seriously harm yourself, in particular through serious injury. Remember, the slower the product, the more stable it is.

It was not for nothing that I mentioned the exercise therapy specialist. Suppose during the health check you did not reveal any pathologies. In that case, you are lucky, and you can train in almost any zone of the fitness club or on the street because running, rollerblading or cross-country skiing is not prohibited in winter. But what if you put on dozens of extra pounds, which severely restrict movement and increase the risk of injury? Yes, it would help if you saw a specialist. But if you do not have the opportunity to get to such, it’s okay, because for people with overweight there is always a universal shell – this is water. The main advantage of exercising in water is a decrease in the load on the joints and the spine, as well as an intense effect on all muscles of the body, which enhances the impact of training with an inevitable increase in calorie consumption. The best direction in the water is aqua aerobics, which many men defiantly ignore, they say, only women are engaged there. Although, this is the stupidest excuse if you have problems with being overweight and you want to lose weight. But on land, there is also an alternative for self-training. Firstly, this is brisk walking on rough terrain, if the load is not enough for you, then try Norwegian walking with special poles. Your main goal is to start exercising regularly.

How often and for how long?

In the first stages of training, three sessions a week for 45 minutes are enough. In the future, you can increase the duration of the lesson to an hour, twenty hours, but this time will include a warm-up before training and a mandatory cool-down at the end. Any full-fledged workout lasts an hour strictly. Remember, you are no longer teenagers who recover from workouts much faster than you do. Moreover, training too long can hurt yourself.

Gym

The gym is a mandatory component of training for men, not only for building a good figure but also for the work of the whole organism as a whole. The fact is that muscles do not grow without the male hormone testosterone, the level of which, with age, inevitably decreases. That is why men after 40 so need strength training as a real “means” to prolong male youth. Strength training has been shown to increase levels of a significant male hormone.

But you need to work out in the gym as carefully as possible. Gradually learning the technique of performing this or that movement, slowly increasing the weight of the weights and in no case trying to set “power records” The optimal mode of work for men after forty is 15-20 repetitions for three approaches in the first month of training. In the future, the number of repetitions can be reduced to 12-15.

You can be active, beautiful and slim at any age; the main thing is to want it. Remember, quality of life is determined not only by the thickness of your wallet but also by how you feel and look.

Cheating, pumping, etc.: the basics of fitness slang for beginners

The most budgetary fitness club or premium establishment with state-of-the-art equipment; a giant sports complex or a small basement “rocking chair” – it doesn’t matter where you go to practice. There will be good old barbells and dumbbells, which are also called “free weights”. And this is not surprising, because it has been proven that the most effective workouts (especially for those who want to gain muscle mass) are working with free weights.

Nearly fifty percent of all fitness club subscription buyers visit the gym to “sip” a barbell. But to do it right, it is not enough to have the right technique. It is also essential to understand the specialized terminology that people continuously use in gyms. The columnist for the Moscow 24 portal, fitness expert and TV presenter Eduard Kanevsky reveals the basic concepts that “pitching” uses.

Any industry has its terms, and when one of them speaks to another specialist, he immediately understands what he is talking about and performs the necessary action. It’s the same in the gym: when the coach says, “Don’t cheat!” – a competent ward immediately understands what exactly he did wrong. And the trainer does not need to spend a dozen words to quickly correct the technique of performing the exercise or make adjustments to the rhythm of the training.

Cheating

A method that is used by all practitioners, without exception, and often incorrectly, since they do it intuitively, which, is not beneficial and can cause injury. So what is it? Cheating (from English – affair) in bodybuilding is the deliberate distortion of technique to perform more repetitions.

For example, when the practitioner performs “lifting the bar for biceps”. In the initial position, the back is straight; the bar must be held with a grip slightly wider than the shoulders, in the initial position, the arms are straight but tense. You need to bend them at the elbows and slowly straighten them to their original position. But when a person gets tired or takes too much weight, he leans forward and, with a sharp movement using the body, throws the bar up, and then just as quickly lowers it down. It turns out that the exercise is performed not by muscles, but by inertial movement. Yes, there is a small load, but when you force your muscles to work with a weight that they cannot handle, the training efficiency will be very low, but the risk of injury is high!
Cheating is needed to “finish off” the muscle in one or two reps – just after you have performed eight to twelve reps with high quality. Your muscles are tired, you feel an intense burning sensation, but you want to load them even more so that the result is better – this is where cheating is used. However, in the following way: you really help to raise the bar with an inertial motion with the help of the body, but you fix it in the upper position and return it to the starting position as slowly as possible, under control, straining your arms as much as possible.
Yes, it’s hard and even painful, but safe and effective. The same applies to any exercise where it is possible to “help” yourself with the body. But this option, when, for example, you perform a “bench press” and, to do more reps, “spring” the barbell against the chest – this is no longer cheating, but an insanely traumatic method. And if you want also to increase the load in the bench movements, then you will need another tactic, the description of which can be found below.

Forced repetitions

They are ideal for exercises where you cannot help yourself with inertial motion. For example “bench press”. At the moment when you completed the specified number of repetitions and the last repetition was given to you as hard as possible – do the following: lower the barbell as slowly as possible to the lowest point, and your partner or coach is already helping you straighten your arms. It is essential that the belayer does not lift the barbell for you, but only helps a little.

It turns out that your muscles are working beyond their capacity – this gives good strength stress and results. I would especially emphasize that it is better to perform forced repetitions no more than once and only in the final set. This method is used for all types of presses: barbells and dumbbells, for some types of deadlifts, and even for pull-ups on the bar.

But you must be properly insured. There are many videos on the Internet where the belayer is so illiterately trying to “help” that he drops the barbell on the occupant or himself, or takes the weight into another plane – because of which the person gets injured. If you are doing alone and need help, then it is better to ask the coach of the club than to an “idle” amateur.

Pumping

An excellent method for working on muscle definition. From English, pump is a pump, that is, your task is to “pump” as much blood as possible into the working muscle for the approach. This is achieved by work with low weights, the highest quality exercise performance and a large number of repetitions – an average of 15-20 per set.

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WARMING UP, STRETCHING, WARMING UP AND COOLING DOWN – ARE THEY REALLY IMPORTANT?

Stretching or warm-up is the foundation of any workout plan that is, unfortunately, often forgotten. Simultaneously, it plays a critical role in building muscle, reducing muscle mass, and healing injuries. Read what stretching techniques we know and what benefits they hide.

Difference between stretching, warming up and cooling down.

The difference between stretching and warming up before a workout lies in their purpose. The goal of stretching is to increase joint flexibility and range. However, it is essential to increase your body temperature and blood flow to your muscles when warming up. These techniques are usually done before training, but you can stretch after training and cooling. However, all three forms of exercise are part of the same set – warm-ups.

Warming up, stretching, warming up and cooling down - are they really important?

Warming up

They were warming up before exercise is essential injury prevention. Proper warming up revitalizes the cardiovascular system by increasing body temperature and blood flow to the muscles. [2] Warming up also prepares your muscles for stress during exercise. If the muscles are warm enough during the warm-up, it will increase the range of motion and reduce the risk of injury during exercise. Examples of a good warm-up are aerobic exercise such as cycling, walking, or jogging, which you should do for at least 5-10 minutes.

Cooling

After training, your heart rate increases, and your muscles tense. Therefore, the goal of cooling is to bring the heart rate back to normal and prevent the formation of a sore throat. An example of cooling down after exercise is, for example, brisk walking with gradual deceleration. Cooling is significant for endurance athletes like marathon runners because it helps them regulate blood flow in the body after a long period of physical activity.

Stretching

Stretching, stretching the muscles can be done before or after training. Its main pre-workout goal is to improve joint range and reduce the risk of injury during exercise. You can try stretching your entire body or just focus on a specific muscle group you plan to train later. However, after exercise, stretching has an entirely different function, and its purpose is to prevent muscle soreness. Stretching can also be very relaxing, both physically and mentally.

The benefits of stretching and warming up muscles

Increases productivity

By far, the best benefit of stretching or warming up your muscles is how it affects your performance. It helps improve in three significant ways:

  • Improves Circulation – Warming up or stretching for 10 minutes, improves circulation, and opens blood capillaries, which have been associated with improved subsequent physical performance.
  • Improves oxygen function – oxygen is released more quickly into the muscles at higher temperatures. If you stretch before your workout, you will warm up your muscles to be ready for peak performance during your workout. If you skip stretching, oxygen can be released into your muscles during exercise for extended periods, which can negatively affect your performance.
  • Accelerates Muscle Contractions – Warming up the muscles before exercise raises the body temperature. This leads to better nerve transmission and muscle metabolism. As a result, your muscles will respond faster and more efficiently to all stimuli during and after exercise.
Difference between stretching, warming up and cooling down

Serves as injury prevention

With an effective and consistent pre-workout warm-up, you relax your joints, increase their range, and improve blood flow to your muscles. All of these aspects are extremely important in preventing injury. The harder and bloodless your muscles are, the higher your risk of injury during exercise.

The benefits of stretching and warming up muscles

Removes heat from the body

The activation of the body’s heat dissipation mechanisms promotes effective muscle cooling, preventing overheating and subsequent overtraining. This benefit is especially important during intense aerobic activity, such as running or cycling. [5] [6] [7]

Balances hormone production

During exercise, the body increases the production of various hormones, including cortisol and adrenaline. They are directly responsible for regulating energy production and your physical performance. If you skip a pre-workout warm-up, these hormones may be activated late and do not affect. On the contrary, you can activate them already during the warm-up, which will give your body enough energy during the workout. [16] You can read about the effect of hormones on muscle mass growth and regeneration in our article. 

Cooling benefits

Supports Rapid Post Workout Recovery

After intense and challenging workouts, lactic acid builds up in the muscles. It is an organic substance that is formed when glucose is broken down in muscles. At rest, the body produces only a small amount, and then travels to the liver, converted back to glucose. However, more glucose is produced during increased physical activity, which also creates higher levels of lactic acid, which the liver cannot process. Therefore, it builds up in the muscles and causes cramps, muscle aches, or even muscle fever. Therefore, phase cooling after exercise helps remove lactic acid from the muscles, thereby helping to recover faster and preventing DOMS formation. Creatine, which also energizes muscles, has also been another excellent means of reducing lactic acid production during exercise.

Reduces Delayed Onset Muscle Pain (DOMS)

Delayed onset of muscle soreness, or DOMS, Eng. Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) usually starts a day or two after training. Pain that you experience during or immediately after exercise is another type of muscle pain, also called acute muscle pain. This is due to lactic acid production and is accompanied by pain immediately after exercise.

DOMS can trigger any exercise that creates small microscopic cracks in the muscle fibers. The body responds to this damage by increasing inflammation, leading to a delayed onset of muscle soreness. DOMS or DOMS symptoms to look out for may include:

  • sensitive muscles to touch
  • decreased range of motion due to pain and stiffness when moving
  • swelling of the affected muscles
  • muscle fatigue
  • short-term loss of muscle strength

Research has shown that effective DOMS prevention is post-workout cooling by stretching and stretching or massaging stressed muscle areas.

Stretching promotes quick recovery after exercise

Stretching types

Just as there are different types of training, there are several forms of stretching. During the warm-up, you can focus on static, dynamic, and ballistic stretches. Let’s see what the difference is between them. 

Static stretching

This is the most common stretch. His technique is to stretch a muscle or muscle group to the farthest point and maintain that position. This type of stretching is considered the safest way to stretch your muscles. This gives the muscles and connective tissues plenty of time to relax.

Static stretching is usually done before strength training, stretching the muscles you intend to train. However, many practitioners find this stretching to be much less effective than dynamic stretching because dynamic warm-up significantly increases the range of motion.

Dynamic stretching

Unlike static stretching, dynamic stretching is a popular way to warm up muscles before aerobic exercise. The dynamic warm-up consists of the muscles’ maximum warming up by repeating the movement several times in a row. Thus, dynamic stretching aims to improve flexibility before performing any sport, running, cycling, or other aerobic activity. An example of dynamic stretching is, for example, a sprinter who takes too long strides before running to establish a maximum range of motion for upcoming power.

Stretching types

Ballistic stretch

Many athletes confuse this stretching with dynamic stretching. However, there is a significant difference between them. A dynamic warm-up is based on regular, repetitive, and deliberately coordinated movements. However, ballistic stretching uses irregular, abrupt, mostly aerobic movements such as high-intensity jumping or sprinting. At the same time, when ballistic stretching, the maximum range of motion must be exceeded. However, it is important to note that this type of stretching is more prone to injury and should only be performed by experienced athletes.

Passive stretching

Depending on the type of acting force, stretching can be divided into passive and active. Passive stretching occurs when external force helps to reach the maximum point of the range. This can be caused by gravity, another person, or a tensioning device such as expanders or pendant reinforcement systems. The point is that the muscle you want to stretch is not under primary stress, so you can relax while stretching. Passive stretching is extremely useful in relieving muscle spasms that are treating injuries.

Active stretching

Active stretching is characterized by using one’s strength to maintain the position in the stretch. This is the opposite of passive stretching. For example, lifting your legs off the ground while lying down and use only leg strength to keep them in the air. For passive stretching, you can use arm support, for example, to keep your leg in the air. Thus, active stretching requires more effort but is more effective for muscle building and flexibility.

How to do proper and effective stretching

Myofascial release

A massage roller or other massage device is used for this type of stretching. Its application to muscles relieves myofascial tension and improves the flexibility of the fascia. The fascia is a specialized connective tissue system that connects the entire body. It affects bones, muscles, joints, nerves and is located in the brain and spinal cord. Therefore, it is essential to take care of the fascial system and to stimulate it regularly. Tension at one fascial point also affects more distant sites as it is a closely interconnected system. So if you feel the tension in your calf, consider that this tension is not only in the calf but also in other parts of the body. 

How to do proper and effective stretching

  • Duration of Stretch – Several studies indicate that stretching or cooling one part of a muscle should take 30 to 60 seconds. [fifteen] 
  • The number of repetitions depends on several factors, such as your physical condition, age, or gender. However, please do not overdo it with stretching and do as many reps as possible. It’s essential to listen to your body.
  • Breathing will help you relax. You should inhale slowly before stretching the muscle and exhale slowly as you stretch it. The exhalation should not be intensified but natural.
  • When to Stretch – To achieve optimal results and prevent injury, stretching, warming up, and cooling down muscles should be part of every training plan you do.

Types of stretching for parts of muscles

You already understand the theory of stretching and warming up muscles. It’s time to start training. What should this stretch look like? It all depends on which group you decide to train. However, it is optimal to focus on stretching the whole body. [10] [11] [12]

Full body stretch

The advantage of stretching the whole body is that no matter what kind of workout you’re going to do, every muscle will be adequately stretched. The basis is to start with the head and gradually move on to the feet while not forgetting a single muscle part.

I am stretching specific parts of the muscles.

An increasingly popular technique, especially among bodybuilders and strength enthusiasts, is to accept stretching only on specific muscle areas, especially for those you will strain after stretching. So, see how stretching the muscles of individual body parts should look like.

The stretch focuses on specific areas of the muscles – the shoulders, wrists, hips, and ankles:

Feet and Ankles – Many athletes, especially bodybuilders, forget to train this muscle part. These are muscles that are directly associated with the calf muscles or hamstrings. They are mainly used for running, cycling, and strength training during deadlifts. Therefore, if you don’t stretch your feet and ankles properly, you can get nasty injuries.

Stretching on the feet and ankles:

Calves – The calf muscles are also often underestimated during warm-up. Simultaneously, it is in the calf muscle that muscle cramps occur most often during exercise. A great warm-up exercise is to stretch your calves from a wall. Stand facing a wall, step forward with your right foot and leave your left facing outward so that you lean forward slightly. Press the heel of your outstretched leg to the ground until you feel the calf tightening. Of course, there are many more calf exercises out there, so you can always spice up your warm-up.

Calf stretch:

Hips – here, you need to focus on stretching the front and back muscles of the thigh. When stretching the anterior thigh muscles, standing leg extension is effective. Stand on both legs and bend one leg so that the heel touches the ischial muscles. Then grab the heel with your hands and hold it in this position for at least 30 seconds. During this exercise, you should feel the tension in your anterior thigh muscles.

Conversely, if you want to train your back thigh muscles or hamstrings, you need to focus on another exercise type. Sit straight on the ground. Keep your back straight and try to touch your toes. However, in no case, bend your knees during this exercise. Otherwise, it will be ineffective.

Thigh stretch:

Back – when warming up the back, it is necessary to start stretching the cervical spine. This is precisely what many do, be it cardio or strength training. The primary type of warm-up is tilting the head forward, backward, left, and right. After training the cervical spine, you will go down to the lumbar part, pull with bending forward, and with the whole body. You can also use yoga poses to train your neck, cervical spine, and lower back.

Backstretch:

Shoulders, Triceps, and Biceps – The core of the shoulder stretch is to extend your arm, bend it at the elbow, and place it behind your head while holding it with your other hand. Sure, this is one of the most straightforward exercises, but if you have strenuous shoulder workouts in the gym, you should focus on a more comprehensive warm-up. The same goes for triceps and biceps, which should be given a separate time when stretching.

Shoulder stretch:

Biceps stretch:

Triceps stretch:

Schedule a workout plan step by step:

  1. warming up muscles due to short aerobic loads
  2. stretching the whole body or a specific muscle group
  3. self-training
  4. stretching the whole body after training
  5. cooling

However, keep in mind that there will be no results without the correct execution of individual exercises. Therefore, if you decide to include stretching and warm-up in your training plan, which you absolutely must do, carefully study the correct exercise technique.

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Guide

Life without strain: 13 habits to improve your health

Shot from the film "Always say yes"

You don’t have to live the life of a fitness blogger to feel better. These simple tricks can help you take better care of yourself and take the time to do things that make you happy.

  • Place washed fruits and vegetables in a prominent place.

A vase or a plate with fruits and vegetables is not only pleasant interior decoration but also a useful reminder that you need to eat at least 400 g of fruits [ 1 ], vegetables and berries every day. If such a snack is in front of your eyes, it will be easier for you not to forget to eat healthily.

  • Do not bring work papers and laptop to bed.

The bed, and ideally, the entire bedroom, should be associated only with sleep and sex, and not with work [ 2 ]. This approach can help you manage or prevent sleep disturbances if any.

  • In the summer, replace your regular hand cream in your bag with SPF.

Sunscreen should be used every two hours [ 3 ] and renewed additionally after every hand washing, bathing or sweating. Choose a cream in a small package or an SPF stick and regularly apply to your hands and other exposed areas of the body, including the back neck, ears and tops of the feet – these are often overlooked places.

  • Put extra sunglasses in your bag, car, or leave at work.

Leaving your home in the pouring rain, it’s no wonder you forget your sunglasses. And regret it when you have to walk in the bright sun. It’s not just about convenience: glasses protect the sensitive skin around the eyes and can reduce the risk of cataracts [ 4 ].

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  • Walk half an hour a day.

Not necessarily in one go: 15 minutes in the morning and evening or after lunch is also a great option. Any physical activity is better than nothing, even if it only takes 10 minutes [ 5 ]. Half an hour a day will already reduce the risk of several diseases [ 6 ], and increasing this indicator will bring even more benefits.

  • Place the book by your bed and read before bed.

Regular reading before bed will help you tune in to rest and prevent insomnia. Please note that it is better to take just a paper book [7] and when choosing literature, avoid texts that can throw you off balance.

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  •  Do not put your phone and other gadgets on charging next to the bed.

At least an hour before bedtime, it is better to stop using your phone, tablet or laptop [ 8 ]. To avoid the temptation to quickly check the news or social networks before bedtime, put your gadgets away.

  • Keep track of how much you sleep.

Seven hours a day is the norm for an adult [ 9 ]. If you find yourself sleeping less, try to get there. Sleep deprivation has been associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, obesity and depression [ 10 ]. Those who do not get enough sleep even get colds more often [ 11 ].

Photo: Claudia Mañas / Unsplash

Get up and go to bed at the same time on weekdays and weekends.

It will help in the prevention and treatment of sleep disorders [ 12 ]. To establish a habit, you need to adhere to a schedule, without allowing for exceptions always.

  1. Do breathing exercises every day.

It is an excellent way to cope with daily stressful situations, lower blood pressure and slow your heart rate [ 13 ]. It is enough to spend 10-20 minutes on exercise, preferably at the same time, to create a habit.

  1. Make to-do lists for the day, week and month.

This habit will help reduce anxiety and make your accomplishments more visible [ 14 ]. A shopping list before going to the store will save you from unnecessary expenses, a to-do list for tomorrow will relieve your head before bed, and a list of books will show you how much you read.

Photo: Glenn Carstens-Peters / Unsplash
  • Ventilate the room at least twice a day.

The air in a home or office is often much dirtier than outside [ 15 ], so ventilation is the easiest way to ensure optimal temperature [16], humidity and fresh air flow into the room.

  • Buy natural air fresheners instead of aerosols.

Research shows that aerosols are more harmful than beneficial [ 17 ]. They can only be used in well-ventilated areas, but even so, it is better to do it less frequently. The optimal home replacement is aromatic oils with natural ingredients. 

Fitness addiction: how to stop and stay healthy

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When it comes to addictions, we usually think of something harmful. It turns out that you can also become addicted to useful things—for example, training in the gym. We will tell you how this can turn out.

Fitness addiction is an obsessive desire to exercise and an obsession with one’s appearance. So, if an addicted person, for some reason, does not exercise for 24-36 hours, he begins to experience irritation, anxiety, fatigue and guilt. It would seem that depending on the sport, there is nothing wrong – instead, on the contrary. However, if the desire to become slimmer and healthier gets out of control, it will become fraught with problems not only with health but also with personal life.

Why fitness is addictive

According to a study by French psychiatrists, about 42% of people are subject to fitness addiction. Moreover, this applies equally to both men and women. It all starts with the desire to improve your body, to make it fitter. A person selects an individual load independently or with the help of an instructor. It’s hard at first. Despite this, he continues to exercise regularly, and at some point, realizes that he no longer gets the desired satisfaction from training. To experience the pleasant sensation of lifting again after exercise, he begins to continually increase the intensity and duration of the activities, spending all his free time in the gym. At the same time, the fitness addict gets hung up on the smallest flaws in his figure.

According to Finnish scientists, post-workout wellness is easily explained using biochemistry. During exercise, the brain is actively synthesizing the hormone of happiness – endorphin. In its chemical structure, it resembles strong pain relievers. This hormone dulls muscle pain, improves mood, reduces stress levels, and induces pleasure and unreasonable joy. Thus, the brain’s reward system is activated, and the newly minted athlete becomes a hostage of “euphoric memory.” In other words, he is addicted to fitness, like drugs or alcohol. And when our body adapts to these endorphin releases, the number of receptors that perceive it increases. As a result, the hormone of joy requires more and more.

Photo: Meghan Holmes / Unsplash

Why is fitness addiction dangerous?

The first problems arise when there is an addiction to substances that cause a state of mild euphoria. Since fitness lovers want to experience the pleasant sensations again, they begin to skip rest days and continue to exercise in the gym even after the onset of pain. This is fraught with damage to tendons and joints, sprains and even fractures. Girls also have an increased risk of menstrual irregularities. Also, during exercise, the body actively produces cortisol, a stress hormone. Due to its excess, fat deposits accumulate, water is retained, and appetite increases Are the most common side effects of exhausting exercise. Therefore, instead of a slender body, fitness addicts risk getting precisely the opposite result.

Due to overload and lack of rest, immunity worsens, and organs wear out faster. Another dangerous feature of sports addiction is that it can be easily replaced by chemical addiction. For example, an alcoholic. And in both cases, the body synthesizes almost the same hormones. And since our brains don’t feel much of a difference when switching to alternative sources of pleasure, the avid fitness fanatic can become addicted to drugs as well. In many ways, this explains the high percentage of drinkers and drug addicts among former athletes: in this way, they try to get the dose of neurotransmitters to which they are used. Conversely, most drug treatment programs include intense training to replace one addiction to another, less harmful.

Sports addiction also negatively affects personal relationships. Since physical activity becomes the basic need of a fitness addict, he gradually loses interest in the world around him and communication with people. Such a person skips any social activity: he does not hesitate to cancel romantic dates and scheduled meetings with friends for a couple of extra hours spent on the simulators. For the same reason, he may postpone essential tasks, not go to school or not complete work tasks in the allotted time. Thus, stagnation begins in all areas of his life, except fitness.

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The main symptoms

It is important to distinguish real sports addiction from healthy fitness hobbies. For example, if you exercise primarily to maintain your health, there is no reason to worry. You should be wary if your main goal is the formation of an ideal figure that matches fashion trends. Fitness addicts spend a lot of time in front of a mirror, looking at the relief of their body. At the same time, they cannot refuse training – the very thought of skipping classes becomes unacceptable.

Another striking symptom: addicted to sports increase physical activity and their duration, even despite injuries, illnesses or doctor’s prohibitions. As a rule, they visit the gym every day and do the same exercises in a strictly planned manner.

The time allotted for physical exercise becomes of paramount importance for a person. It shapes his daily routine, and finances are now distributed so that they are enough to buy sports nutrition and maintain a diet. If a person or business meeting intersects with a workout, the fitness addict prefers the latter. Therefore, he lacks not only strength but also time for any other business, except for sports. Exhausting your body with intense exertion and low-calorie nutrition, a person becomes anxious and nervous. He is fixated on burning calories and does not stop exercising even after injury. If for some reason, a fitness addict cannot get into the gym, he withdraws into himself and begins to feel guilty.

Photo: Anastase Maragos / Unsplash

How to avoid addiction

If the training program is drawn up correctly, playing sports improves mood, improves metabolic processes, increases immunity, strengthens the skeleton, makes the body harmonious and enduring. Also, moderate physical activity protects us from various diseases – colds, diabetes, osteoporosis, disorders of the cardiovascular system. If a person abuses fitness, problems will only increase. Therefore, it is so important to listen to your feelings. If you become too intense and increase your workout volume by 10% weekly, start changing your thinking and behaviour. Experts advise to interrupt training and do something pleasant temporarily, and in the future – to limit the duration of classes in the gym and strictly adhere to this regulation.

According to psychologists, fitness addiction is usually formed against a background of various psychological problems. People often try to escape from reality with the help of sports. For example, from some disturbing thoughts, anxiety, longing, loneliness, low self-esteem, stagnant career, or an eating disorder. Try to figure out what training gives you – this will help you find a way out of the situation without violence against yourself. If you did not manage to cope with addiction on your own even after adjusting the program with a trainer, seek help from a psychotherapist.

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Guide

Foot pain: where it comes from and how to avoid it

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After summer tourist outings, foot pains can worsen in the fall. They usually receive little attention and most people are unaware of what problems they might signal. Understanding the issue before the season of uncomfortable office shoes.

Causes of pain in the foot

According to the Center for Hygienic Education of the Population of Rospotrebnadzor, among the diseases of the feet, flat feet occupies one of the leading positions [ 1 ]. In a healthy foot, the load is distributed between three support points: the back of the heel, the big toe plus the head of the metatarsal bone, and the outer edge of the foot. When the foot is deformed for one reason or another, there is an imbalance in the load, a change in the structure of the osteo-ligamentous apparatus. As a result, pain occurs, leading to the development of various diseases.

As for people who were not genetically predisposed to flat feet and did not develop it in their youth, noticeable changes begin to occur after 40 years. The body is no longer so resistant to excessive loads, including on the joints, hormonal changes occur, the wear and tear of the osteo-ligamentous apparatus increases, the risk of excess weight gain increases, which adversely affects the feet.

Photo: RunPhoto / Getty

With age, the articular and bone structures cannot fully perform their functions: walking and damping the load. Therefore, the causes of pain in a completely healthy person can be fatigue, prolonged physical activity, improperly selected shoes when playing sports.

Non-mechanical causes of pain in the foot include the presence of the following diseases: metabolic disorder, gout, diabetes mellitus, varicose veins [ 2 ] and other vascular diseases, post-traumatic changes (improperly treated leg subluxation, etc.).

Let’s consider the main situations associated with foot pain:

  • Burning foot and toe pads
  • Joint pain near the fingertips
  • Heel pain
  • Pain in the back of the foot
  • Pain on the outside of the foot
  • Pain over the heel
  • Ankle pain
  • Interdigital calluses and corns

Burning foot and toe pads

The reason, most likely, was uncomfortable shoes. The load is not properly distributed, causing the pads under the metatarsal bones to become inflamed and sore. You can relieve symptoms with a relaxing foot bath and light self-massage. But you need to see a doctor for treatment. Most likely, you will hear the diagnosis “Metatarsalgia”.

The joints in the area of ​​the fingertips hurt.

This symptom is characteristic of Morton’s neuroma [ 3 ]. The unpleasant sensations are associated with irritation of the nerve passing between the heads of the metatarsal bones of the third and fourth fingers.

At the initial stage of the disease, the pain may be mild, later it may be aggravated by a burning sensation, it will begin to “shoot through”, and the foot will be uncomfortable in almost any shoe with a closed nose.

Heel hurts

The most common cause is a bony build-up on the heel or heel spur. It occurs due to inflammation of the plantar fascia [ 4 ] due to mistakenly selected shoes and improper load distribution in them. The spur gives pain when the heel is loaded, which is why a person involuntarily throws the load on other parts of the foot. As a result, posture and balance are disturbed. The formation of a heel spur and the appearance of pain in it speaks of a chronic process. It is not worth postponing treatment.

The back of the foot

The cause of pain is the deformation of the metatarsal bone in the thumb and the development of bursitis. The bone itself does not hurt; the inflamed joint capsule causes unpleasant sensations. Due to the protruding bone, the shoes become tight and chafe, which leads to inflammation.

Fifth metatarsal bone (outer part of the foot)

Pain in this part of the foot indicates the development of a varus deformity [ 5 ] (fifth metatarsal bone). This is the so-called bump on foot next to the little finger. The most common cause of the development of this disorder is flat feet, clubfoot or a change in the shape of the legs (“legs with a wheel”). Due to excessive stress on the outer part, the fifth metatarsal flattened.

Pain over the heel (Achilles tendon pain)

The Achilles tendon is where it most often rubs the heel of the shoe. It is because of the frequent friction and excessive pressure that inflammation occurs. For treatment and prevention, it is recommended to choose the right shoes and protect this weak point by raising the heel higher (with an insole, a heel pad) so that the Achilles tendon does not experience pressure.

Ankle pain

The ankle performs a supporting function. Various subluxations and injuries (including improperly treated ones) can provoke inflammation of both the joint capsule and the ligamentous apparatus.

Photo: Sorrorwoot Chaiyawong / EyeEm / Getty

Interdigital calluses

The main reason for their occurrence is too narrow uncomfortable shoes. Better not to ignore this problem. You can cover up the callus with plaster; this will prevent mechanical damage to the skin. Still, the frequent wearing of uncomfortable shoes will entail more severe disorders in the structure of the foot and the proper functioning of the joints.

Corns

We should be alarmed by corns because they have a protective function. The body begins to defend itself and develops keratinization, hyperkeratosis occurs – coarsening of the skin of the feet.

Corns and calluses appear in those parts of the foot on which a large load falls. And if now there are no pain manifestations, there is a high risk of earning them. The pressure on the foot should be adjusted with orthopedic insoles, which can be worn with both sneakers and fashion shoes.

Foot pain treatment

The main advice is to be careful about your feet. If you notice corns, calluses, feel fatigue or burning, the body itself informs you that it needs rest and the load needs to be adjusted. It is also important to promptly respond to pain in the lower leg and knee joints. They often say that the pressure balance is imbalanced. At least an orthopedic examination and selection of individual insoles will help to return the situation to normal.

Do not sit cross-legged and avoid other non-physiological positions of the legs and feet that disrupt the work of the circulatory system.

In case of weight gain (including during pregnancy), wear orthopedic insoles. The foot is not prepared for sudden load increases and needs additional support.

Choose shoes for sports activities. It is essential to take into account the nature of the activity (running or exercising with equipment), as well as systematically change the sneakers since the shock absorbers in them wear out over time.

Reduce the time of wearing uncomfortable shoes: with narrow toes, high heels, flat soles. If uncomfortable shoes are a permanent part of your wardrobe, try to reduce the stress by choosing a comfortable pair for the afternoon.

Walk barefoot on sand, grass, ground. This can be called a natural massage of the reflexogenic points of the feet, due to which muscle tone rises and blood circulation improves.

Do self-massage. You can relieve fatigue and restore blood circulation using self-massage and rolling the feet on a roller (you can use a bottle from available tools).

Stretching: why is it needed and how to do it correctly

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To maintain health and beauty, it is enough to do the stretching complex a couple of times a week. We will tell you which exercises are the easiest and most useful to do.

  • Neck stretch
  • Stretching the legs
  • Stretching the buttocks
  • Back (spine) stretch
  • Stretching the arms and shoulders
  • Breast stretch
  • A set of exercises for stretching muscles
  • Stretching for beginners

Why stretch

There is a stereotype that exercises to increase muscle elasticity is the lot of athletes. They need to stretch after a workout to avoid stiffness and adapt to the stress. If in some types of yoga there are complex asanas that are not available for the entry-level, then stretching is a suitable practice for a person at any age, regardless of lifestyle and daily activity. Exercise helps [1] :

  1. Prevent muscle shortening.
  2. Improve elasticity, including ligaments and tendons.
  3. Get rid of muscle fatigue.
  4. Reduce the risk of injury.
  5. Improve flexibility and coordination.
  6. Make your posture beautiful and relieve back pain.
  7. Adapt to higher loads.

Plus stretching, in contrast to strength exercises for certain muscle groups, in variability and the absence of tension. It is necessary to improve elasticity in statics, without an increase in heart rate and sudden movements; therefore, most people without sports skills will cope with stretching [2].

How to stretch properly

You can do it barefoot, in sneakers or socks – whichever is more comfortable. Don’t try to do the exercise correctly right away. At first, the muscles will get used to it, and it is essential to maintain a pleasant feel. Stretching is safer and more effective when the muscles are warmed up. Before the exercises, it is better to do a short warm-up [3]: bend your knees, twist your arms at the elbows, make the body bend back and forth. Joint gymnastics takes about five to seven minutes, which can be replaced with a little cardio workout (running, walking).

To stretch the muscles well, you need to be in the chosen position from 30 seconds to a couple of minutes, depending on the sensations. It is convenient to use a timer with a signal to control the execution time. Try to keep static and then perform light, springy movements.

Neck stretch

Relieving tension in the neck has a positive effect on the upper body from the shoulders to the spine. Try tilting your head forward, backward, right, and left. To enhance the effect, place your hand on the back of your head and gently press towards the tilt. During the exercise, a slight tension should be felt on the side opposite to the tilt. To stretch the back of your neck, place one hand on your chin. The exercises can be done while standing or sitting.

Stretching the legs

This exercise can be done while lying or sitting. Bend your knees and place the ankle of one leg over the knee of the other. To deepen the pose and strengthen the stretch, you need to press the lower leg up on the free one. Exercise helps to increase the elasticity of the muscles in the back of the thigh.

Photo: self.com

To stretch the front of the thigh, pull the heel towards the buttock. You can perform the exercise lying or standing, so coordination of movements is additionally developed. Try not to move your torso while stretching and remember to repeat the exercise with the other leg.

Photo: self.com

The following exercise is performed while lying on your back and is suitable for completing the session. It allows you to relax and release tension while gently stretching your back to improve posture. Bring the soles of your feet together and let your knees open and move closer to the floor. Keep them in this position for 30 seconds to two minutes.

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Stretching the buttocks

Your glutes also need relaxation, especially if you’ve done squats. Lie on your back and bring your knees to your chest with both hands. Do not lift your lower back off the floor. This position helps to stretch the buttocks and lower back well.

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Back (spine) stretch

Lie on your stomach with your legs extended straight. Rise up on your elbows. Press your hips to the floor with your shoulders relaxed. Sit down to feel the stretch in your lower back. In this exercise, it is important not to overextend your lower back and stop immediately if you feel discomfort or pain.

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A variation of the popular dog pose can be performed both standing and kneeling. Stretch your arms forward and push your hips up and towards your heels. Gradually move your palms to one side and hips to the other to feel the stretch, but avoid pinching in the spine.

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Stretching the arms and shoulders

The triceps stretch is essential even if you aren’t doing push-ups or lifting weights. This exercise helps to strengthen the muscles in the back of the arm to maintain its shape. It can be done while standing or kneeling. Keep your feet hip-width apart and extend your arms over your head. Bend your elbow and touch your upper back. With your free hand, pull your bent elbow down and towards your head.

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The shoulders withstand a high daily load, especially with a sedentary lifestyle. Posture, gait, proper blood circulation and back health depend on the health of these muscles. Shoulder exercises can be performed while standing, sitting, or lying down depending on the desired intensity and circumstances.

Breast stretch

Exercise allows you to relieve muscle tension after wide grip push-ups quickly. Lie on your stomach and stretch your arms out to the sides in a T-shape. Push off the floor with your left hand and bend your left knee for balance as you begin to twist to the right. You should feel a stretch in your right pectoralis muscle.

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A set of stretching exercises

You can alternately stretch each muscle group, or try more complex exercises that involve multiple body parts at once. For example, a stretch called a pretzel. It helps to work out the calf and gluteal muscles, as well as the spine and hip flexors.

Lie on your left side with your hand under your head. Bend your right knee and press your hip against your chest as much as possible, and then let it fall to the floor. Then bend your left knee and take your left foot (use the strap if you can’t reach it) with your right hand. Be sure to keep your leg and torso in a straight line as you gently bring your upper shoulder blade to the floor. To reinforce the twist, turn your head to look over your shoulder.

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Stretching for beginners

The exercises described are available to most people. Even if for now, you can only do them at half the amplitude, this will be enough for a positive effect. Gradually, the muscles will get used to the load and become more pliable and soft. After a few days, you will notice that it has become easier to stay in the original adjusted position, which means that you can deepen the stretch. If you’re a beginner, try starting with the simplest:

  1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart and relax your knees and hips. Interlace your fingers and extend your arms over your head, palms up. Take ten deep, slow breaths. Relax and repeat.
  2. Stand with your feet hip-width apart and bend your knees. Keeping your hands on your lower back, bend forward, slightly protruding your tailbone back; feel a stretch in your lower back. Take your shoulders away from your head. In this position, take ten deep breaths.
  3. Get on all fours with your palms on the floor just below your shoulders. Tighten your abdominal muscles, arch your back, and lower your head so that you face your stomach. Hold for ten seconds, breathe deeply. Now lower your back while raising your head. Remain in this position for another ten seconds, also taking deep breaths in and out. Repeat the complex four times.

Sudden movements can lead to injury, so it’s important to do flexibility exercises without fuss. Look for complexes for the whole body or target specific muscle groups that require special attention. During the exercise, there should be no sharp pain, pinching and cramps.

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Exercise, proper nutrition, meditation: the professor is about what the brain needs

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How meditation practices affect the brain, as well as fast food, cookies and croissants, RBC Style found out in a conversation with Alexey Danilov, MD.
Since the early 2010s, neurobiology has become one of the most popular areas of scientific non-fiction. Biohackers were mainly interested in studying the influence of life factors on age and brain functioning ten years ago. Today, more and more people are thinking about this, who would like to work more efficiently, feel better and enjoy life. Which of this is included in our control area – we figure it out together with an expert.
What happens to the brain as the body ages?
The brain, like the entire body, prepares itself for aging. The process of pruning (reduction in the number of nerve cells) begins from the moment of our birth and lasts throughout our life – new nerve cells always die off, only functioning ones remain. Accordingly, if a person trains certain functions – memory, concentration, attention switching, speech, motor activity – nerve cells are active in these areas of the brain, and new connections between neurons are formed.
If a person does not use any of the brain functions, then the cells responsible for this activity die faster. Also, due to ageing of the whole organism, oxidative stress, exposure to several unfavourable environmental factors, pathological changes can occur in the brain – heavy metals and pathological proteins are deposited, which contributes to the development of neurodegenerative diseases. If there is a genetic predisposition, someone develops Alzheimer’s disease; someone develops Parkinson’s disease.
How does the physical or intellectual type of human activity affect the state of the brain?


It used to be believed that a person who wants to achieve the highest results in intellectual work needs to do only this type of activity. However, only those who combine mental stress with physical activity can achieve the best results. This, in general, has been proven for a long time. Both Oxford and Cambridge universities host rowing and swimming competitions. In all respectable universities, sports are in the first place, in the second – fundamental sciences. Today it is scientifically proven that it is the combination of physical and intellectual activity that increases mental performance, improves the connecting functions of the brain. The remarkable Soviet chess player Anatoly Karpov said that tennis is chess on the grass. He played tennis for two hours a day and chess for several hours. This is a golden duo.

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Nutrition is also essential for useful brain function. There are phrases such as “food for the mind”, “smart food”. It has a foundation. Moreover, what is good for the brain is good for the heart, skin, and the whole organism. If we keep our brain functions in order, we will improve the functioning of the entire body, as the brain regulates the activity of other organs and systems.

What foods are suitable for the brain?
Blueberries, spinach, nuts, sustainably grown vegetables and fruits, fish. For example, Norwegian salmon, wild fish. Now, like thousands of years ago, you need to “hunt” for good food, get it. Cheap foods are toxic, filled with pesticides and nitrates. Even if the level does not exceed the acceptable standards, this does not mean that these products are safe.

When we take accelerated greenhouse tomatoes, cucumbers and eggplants, we are balancing benefit and benefit. The toxic substances they contain do not cause acute poisoning, but in the end, the systematic use of such food after several years disrupts the brain. As a rule of thumb, eat local, organic and seasonal. It will be good for the mind as well as the heart, intestines and skin.

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The peculiarity of these products is that they are cooked with trans fats. And the brain is 40% fat. The myelin sheath, which covers neurons, is surrounded by phospholipids (complex compounds of alcohols and fatty acids). This fatty membrane is responsible for the speed of the impulses. And when we replace good natural fats with trans fats, a malfunction occurs, the conducting nervous system “sparks”. Because of this, we neurologists don’t like trans fats. But they are also not very good for the heart and disrupt the work of the gastrointestinal tract, metabolic processes.

Nothing happens after eating junk food once. But when it turns into a whole food system, after a while small changes occur – increased fatigue appears, the concentration of attention is lost. And then, with the addition of other stress factors, this can cause a more severe failure, including in the activity of the cardiovascular and endocrine systems.

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But what about sweets such as store cookies, croissants that have a long shelf life?
The less perishable the product, the more additives it contains, which increase the load on the detoxification organs, aggravate the functioning of the immune system and sooner or later cause it to malfunction. The more refined the product, the cheaper it is, the more dangerous it is. And there is a paradox here. In the past, refined sugar and flour were considered more valuable foods. Today, for some reason, white bread is cheaper than whole grain bread made from wholemeal flour. These are some commercial games. But in fact, less refined foods have more nutritional value. Some cereals can be cooked in half a minute, but it is better to take common buckwheat and cook it for 20-30 minutes: its nutritional value will be higher than that of innovative instant products.

Is refined sugar bad for the brain?
Our brain needs glucose. But it is found not only in sugar, but it is also found in bread and pasta. There is no need to switch to sugar substitutes; they have an even more damaging effect. In general, you need to be careful with sugar. It is a trigger element for several diseases at once – stroke, cardiovascular disorders, diabetes mellitus, obesity. If a person has high physical activity two to three hours a day, he has the right to sweet tea. If you don’t get enough physical activity, you need to moderate your appetites for sugar.

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What medications and techniques are currently available that can promote clarity of thought in old age?
In the field of psychopharmacology, even in Soviet times, some drugs improve brain function. The soldiers were given Sydnokarb. Now there is Phenibut and others. Bayer has preparations with guarana. In principle, for useful brain function, we need the right food, omega-3, B vitamins, vitamin C, zinc and selenium: they are involved in all biochemical processes of the body, are adaptogens, improve brain function in stressful situations, including increase performance concentration and memory.

And what about coffee and tea?
Brain stimulants like coffee or tea are good in moderation. One or two cups of coffee a day, if there is no intolerance, will give you strength and improve your mood. But if you drink seven or ten cups, the effect will not be as much better. Travellers always stopped at Gogol and other classic writers to feed the horses or give them a rest. The brain needs breaks too. The best thing for the brain – mostly after we have worked intensively mentally – is to change the type of activity, take a break, take a walk. Eight hours of work, with four 15-minute intervals, will be more productive than ten hours of continuous work sitting at a desk. Short breaks every 25-45 minutes become a brain stimulant. There are time management systems.
In terms of technology, there are brain trainers to improve mental performance. For example, “Wikium” is a simulator that allows you to individually measure various types of brain activity – concentration, reaction speed, memory – and train exactly those functions that you want to improve.
There are also old ways – memorizing poems, singing and playing musical instruments. Music-making, choral singing are great ways to improve interhemispheric interaction, relieve stress and develop the brain.

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There are also remarkable technologies of adaptive biofeedback, which were previously called biofeedback. This is similar to meditation and allows you to enter the alpha and theta rhythms of the brain, into a state of trance. Only during meditation, we cannot understand how deeply we have entered this state, but here, with the help of technology, we observe the result in the form of a diagram or animation.

For example, we see flowers, and if we enter the alpha rhythm, the flower blooms, and if we fail, the flower shrivels. Thanks to feedback, you can train your brain and enter the functional state we need. This allows for better stress management. At the Institute for Interdisciplinary Medicine, we train office workers to increase productivity and build stress resilience using bio-management technologies.

What is the practical application of these technologies?
We offer this kind of brain fitness for business companies, when employees need to be prepared for a stressful situation, difficult negotiations, brainstorms to increase their productivity. First, they learn with the help of feedback on the monitor. Then they can reach the required state without additional tools, just by the power of thought, like Fandorin with Boris Akunin, who was entering a country of increased productivity. This is achievable today. At the same time, it reduces the incidence of sickness among employees and strengthens their immune system.

So the benefits of meditation have been scientifically proven?
Yes, there has been researching on how meditation affects the brain. The Dalai Lama brought his monks to a research university in the United States. It turned out that during meditation, certain parts of the brain are activated – in particular, the frontal lobe, which is responsible for the state of awareness. Indeed, these monks exhibited a specific neurophysiological pattern of brain activity. But interestingly, when the same studies were carried out on ordinary students, not Buddhist monks, it turned out that they, too, after a few weeks of training, showed a tendency to such changes. That is, regular meditation can improve brain function. There are several international scientific publications on this topic; today, this area is very popular.
The only limitation is the willingness of the person himself. Some people love simple things like yoga and meditation. After all, this is the best, free and not troublesome way. It only requires self-discipline. For the lazier, there are adaptive biocontrol technologies, where we achieve the same effect, but with a lesser degree of self-discipline.

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And which of the Russian scientists is studying the influence of yoga and meditation on the brain?

Academician Shtark Mark Borisovich has been studying adaptive control technologies in Novosibirsk for a very long time. Now he has developed a biofeedback system based on functional MRI that helps doctors see the connection between the frontal lobe and the amygdala, the part of the brain responsible for anxiety, on live television. When we see this connection, we can calm down, relieve anxiety by trying different ways to relax. This is a unique development of an international format. With Mark Borisovich, we are planning a series of experiments related to meditation practices.

Doctor Sergei Agapkin is also involved in this topic. He founded the renowned Institute of Traditional Health Systems, which trains specialists in yoga therapy for rehabilitation. This area, I think, will gain in popularity.

Your area of ​​interest is also neuroaesthetics (the science of how works of art and beauty affect the brain). Tell us about research in this area.

Dostoevsky said that beauty would save the world. Today it is scientifically proven. When we are in a beautiful environment, we feel better. Our brain rejoices when we see and hear something beautiful. Curiously, we can discover something beautiful, for example, in areas such as mathematics. Some formulas can be overwhelming. They experimented: mathematicians were shown two recipes, and they preferred one of them because when reading it, the brain synthesized endorphins. Some factors affect us regardless of the level of training: sound vibrations, nature. But more complex things, such as mathematics, classical music or works of art, affect prepared people. Therefore, it makes sense from childhood to become familiar with culture and art. Some are addicted to alcohol, smoking, drugs, while others are looking for more long-term and exciting ways to get pleasure, such as art. And they find themselves in an undeniable gain.

The ideas of neuroaesthetics are being embodied in architecture today. Abroad, it is called salutogenic design or healthy design. Now our Institute of Interdisciplinary Medicine and Moscow State University of Civil Engineering are developing new construction standards. Until now, SNiPs (building codes and rules. – “RBK Style” ) have been aimed at ensuring that the person in the building does not die or get sick. The new architecture does not just care about safety but sets the task of improving human functioning in the created environment.

To solve it, environment-improving technologies are being developed, for example, biodynamic lighting, which completely copies the rhythm of the solar spectrum during the day. We get a cold blue spectrum in the morning; it stimulates mental activity. In the evening, we get warm yellow, which allows the brain to relax. It is a natural way to improve the health of the neuroimmune system and increase productivity.

A Russian company has developed lighting systems for offices and public spaces that combine biodynamic lighting with ultraviolet radiation to decontaminate a room. Salutogenic design is a transdisciplinary field aimed at changing space so that people do not go to health clinics and gyms, but can strengthen their bodies every day in the workplace and at home.

All people face the problem of headaches. What can you recommend?

First of all, you need to understand that a headache is not an annoying misunderstanding that prevents you from doing work, but a friendly signal. He tells us that we should listen to our body and understand what is wrong with it. The causes of headache can be a different – unhealthy diet, food intolerance, stress, jet lag. Also, the cause of the headache can be a psychological conflict. When a person understands what this impulse means and not only dulls the pain but eliminates its cause, he solves the problem. Unfortunately, many people suppress their headaches with drugs. For the time being, the head does not hurt, but then other diseases pop up. Therefore, we need to listen carefully to the signals of our body and give it what it asks for.

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