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Exercise Bike Program - How to Lose Weight
By: Michael Walker

Your pants are a bit tight, you canít seem to stop eating junk, and youíre tired all of the time. Itís time to get healthy and lose weight. Combined with a more sensible diet, an exercise bike can help you achieve the results you want.

Ugh, the Diet.

So many people go wrong here. Forget fad diets, forget starvation. Slow and steady wins the race. Try changing one thing about your diet. Limit yourself to one soda a day. Stop skipping meals. If you always clean your plate, start leaving one or two bites. A total change in diet is work. If you go for a radical change, you are setting yourself up for failure. Youíll be surprised how well small changes work.

The Right Bike Determines Your Success

This is a critically important part. There are literally hundreds of exercise bikes available. You have to be honest with yourself to discover the one that will work best for you. If you talk yourself into some fantasy world where your exercise plan is going to work this time even though thereís nothing different, youíre going to be disappointed. If you think ahead, you will buy the right bike for your needs. You will end up with a successful long-term exercise routine.

Think back to your last exercise routine attempt. Why did you stop? Did you suffer an injury? Did you get bored? Was it just too hard to do every day? Was it hard to find the time? Answer these questions truthfully. If you donít figure out where you went wrong, you wonít be able to come up with a solution.

Avoiding and Working Through Injuries

If an injury caused you to stop working out, how did you sustain your injury? Becoming physically fit is supposed to help you prevent injuries, not cause them. There is an exercise bike for someone who has been injured working out. Itís called a recumbent exercise bike. Itís the kind found in a lot of health clubs. It has a large, bucket seat, and you sit back and low to the ground. It is perfect for people beginning a new exercise routine. Itís also very good for back problems as it forces you to keep good posture. It puts no pressure on your joints, and you can keep working out even if you have minor injuries.

Overcoming Boredom

Did you get bored the last time you tried to workout on a regular basis? If you did, you are likely to get bored again. With exercise bikes, the solution is usually a bike with several different levels and riding programs. You can get bikes with different difficulty levels. This means that when it becomes too easy for you to pedal, you simply move up to the next level instead of having to ride longer (which just isnít likely to happen for the person who is easily bored). You can also get different programs. Programs give you variety and goals. They make you pedal harder, simulate conquering hills, and even sprinting for short periods.

Riding programs might not be enough for you. You might need a bike that you can hook up to your television that simulates riding through different courses. You can take a leisurely ride through a park or compete with other computer riders on a difficult obstacle course. These bikes might cost more up front, but if you donít invest in a bike that will let you sustain your workout, youíre wasting money on anything less.

The coolest thing for game addicts who get bored is an interactive bike that plugs into a Sony Playstation or Playstation 2. It makes over 50 games interactive. Whatever is happening on your bike happens on the screen in bike, car, and similar games. There are all types of similar bikes available.

If you plan on listening to music or watching TV while you cycle, be sure to pay attention to features that will make the exercise bike quieter. Itís also a good idea to get a quieter bike if you live with other people. For all you know, your workout time is going to be 5AM or midnight. A quieter bike wonít disturb other people in your home.

Donít Try to Be Lance Armstrong YetÖ

People beginning exercise programs are sometimes too ambitious. Itís good to be excited, but you have to remain realistic. If your last exercise program failed because it was just too much work, donít make the same mistake again. Fight the urge to overdo your first workouts. It is critical to your long-term success that you start out slow. If you go from no exercise at all to 5 to 10 minute exercise bike workouts with little resistance, you are much more likely to avoid injury, soreness, and most of all, early feelings of defeat. If you aim too high Ė expecting to go from a sedentary lifestyle to 45 minute workouts immediately, for example Ė you are setting yourself up for failure. When you donít reach your unattainable goal, it is more likely youíll quit altogether to alleviate the feeling of failure that much sooner.

The perfect bikes for people who get a bit over-excited are exercise bikes with built in riding programs. You simply start out at the lowest level, and the bike determines your workout. You program in a small goal (10 minutes, 50 calories, or .25 mile) and when you reach that goal, your workout is over.

Finding the Time

You do have time to burn fat and calories on an exercise bike. No matter how intense your schedule is, there are people busier than you who find time to make an exercise routine work. They are not better than you. They donít have more than 24 hours in a day. They simply figured out how to make it work. You can, too.

It can be as simple as the time of day you chose to workout in the past. There is scientific evidence that people who are ďmorning peopleĒ or ďnight owlsĒ are physically different. Different people have energy at different times. Think about when you work best. If you wake up without an alarm clock ready to go, you should exercise first thing in the morning. If you are a night owl, you should consider working out at night. You might find that you are one of the people who tire yourself out enough with a night workout to sleep like a baby.

You Can Do This!

Losing weight is not a punishment. You are smart enough to know how to eat a little better and become more active. If you are honest with yourself, you will choose the proper bike. You want to look forward to the workout itself. Donít get caught up in which bike burns more calories. Find an exercise bike you will enjoy riding. Figure out the time of day thatís best for you to exercise. Make it like getting dressed or bathing Ė itís just something you do every day. You donít have to train for the Tour de France. You just have to get on and do something every day. Ten minutes a day will yield results. Bookmark this article for future motivation, find your exercise bike, and get busy!

Michael Walker is a freelance author providing useful information about stationary bicycles, spinning equipment and portable exercise bikes. His numerous articles offer comprehensive tips and solutions for the fitness enthusiast.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/


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The Power of Stretching    - Dave Snape

 

Your muscles ache from a good stretch. This is quite
normal and is part of the process. Stretching has
seemingly been with us and particularly with athletes
since the beginning of time.

A very key point to good stretching is to hold the
stretch for at least seventeen seconds. This is a
pearl of wisdom gleaned from a ballet teacher a few
years back. She said that any stretch under 17
seconds was just not effective.

The 17 second rule is exceeded in the high intensity
Bikram's yoga where stretches are held for about 30
seconds. Don't forget the high level of heat that is
used in Bikram's to extract that last little bit of
stretch out of your muscles. An interesting twist that
is not necessary to gain benefits from stretching. But,
it can't hurt, right?

So what kind of benefits can you expect from
stretching? That's an easy one. Have you ever seen the
movie, Blood Sport? Did you know that Frank Dux could
truly stretch his body to the extreme. The actor that
played him was quite elastic as well.


Great elasticity is also something you might see in
well trained Spetsnaz (Russian) agents. They often work
out with Russian kettlebells too. They are for superior
strength gains and the ability to withstand ballistic
shocks.

Why are stretching and flexibility considered important
to these people? Stretching gives one the ability to
have explosive power available at one's fingertips
without the need to warm up. Of course most of us are
not martial artists or agents. But, you'll be happy to
know there are plenty of other benefits.

Let me give you an example. After learning to sit in
the full lotus position for long periods of time, my
ankles became very flexible. One day I was walking
along and my left foot fell into a pothole. This mishap
pushed my ankle sideways to about 90 degrees from it's
normal position.

Amazingly, this didn't even hurt, not one bit. If my
ankle hadn't been so flexible, I may have suffered a
sprained ankle. At the very least, it would have hurt
for days.

Key point: stretching helps you to avoid injuries.
Not only that but if you do have a muscle, tendon or
ligament injury it should heal faster, theoretically
speaking.

Stretching actually grows the ligaments, tendons and
muscles being stretched. They really grow longer over
time.

Check with your physician before undertaking any type
of exercise, including stretching.

Here is some good instructional material on stretching:
http://tinyurl.com/6c6kq
 

Dave Snape

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