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Running Barefoot



Running Barefoot

Running Barefoot

I know what you’re thinking: (a really big) Bigfoot, right?

No… This is just a public service announcement to scare the crap out of you that when and if you run barefoot, you’ll need a wheelchair soon.

Actually, it’s quite the opposite in this case… not all forms of paranoia are justified… if justified at all.

Running barefoot has its benefits… believe it or not… and yes, this is for the folks who have seen people’s feet bleeding from marathons or from anywhere else.

Sometimes all our deepest fears can be cleared if we take a look at history.

Do you think cavemen wore Nike running shoes as they chased their quarry in the jungle?

Even though we’re big followers of Darwin, I’m sorry, we haven’t evolved as much as we’d like to think. We still have two hands and legs, one stomach, take a dump through our colon, and perhaps the only improvement we have made is our use of language from hand gestures (that sometimes works better than the former).


George Carlin once said that you’ll meet three kinds of people in your daily lives. The first type is the really stupid ones (read: numb), the second: full of shit (read: numb), and the third: fucking nuts (read: numbnuts). And some of them carry the distinction of combining these delightful attributes from all three kinds. And that’s why people are scared of germs, obsess about diseases that never really make it in the real world, and won’t expose themselves to hazardous conditions…Er… for example, running barefoot!

What happened to that famous quote by Franklin Roosevelt: “We have nothing to fear but fear itself.”

If that doesn’t get your wheels turning, nothing will.

Now, since I’m done making my point here, let’s get on with business… shall we?


So, the benefits –
1) The relaxing feel
If you recall the last time you were barefoot, it would’ve been on a beach, at a park, or perhaps in your backyard. How did it feel to touch the ground at that time? And for those who aren’t the touchy-feely types, it has been proved scientifically that in running barefoot, we develop a better perception of our contact with the ground (as opposed to wearing shoes), which helps to have better timing in making contact with the ground and adjusting our body weight more precisely.

2) Muscle Strength
The groups of muscles in your feet with the related muscles of the legs and hips are strengthened compared to when wearing shoes.

3) Releases psychological stress
When our feet touch the ground, our body experiences the reduction of electricity charges due to the ‘earthing’ available that acts as a kind of lightning rod. Any nitwit should presumably be aware of the fact that the electric impulses that run through our body contribute to our emotions… namely stress… and this form of grounding seemingly helps you stay calm and in control (as opposed to shooting yourself with drugs of the recreational or medicinal kinds).

4) Bye, bye Varicose veins
Running barefoot can actually help prevent vein problems. Why? The motion you get from your unrestricted foot helps the leg muscles pump blood back to the heart, which might not be the case when working out with running shoes.

5) No blisters, hot, sweaty, or cramped feet
I think this one’s rather obvious after about seven hours of standing and running around… thanks to your temping assignment that requires you to stand all day in front of a bunch of hormonal, uncontrollable, and spoilt (for lack of a better word) teenagers that consider their raison d’etre to be giving you a miserable time.

See… it’s not all that bad! There are two sides to every coin, and just like there are advantages to running with shoes… there are plusses to running barefoot too.

Take a look at this video, where the person running feels a sense of freedom while doing so (watch his feet).

So, are there any other benefits of running barefoot that you can recall?


Dumbbell Workouts – 4 Tips to Avoid Injury and Embarrassment



Dumbbell Workouts – 4 Tips to Avoid Injury and Embarrassment

Dumbbell Workouts – 4 Tips to Avoid Injury and Embarrassment

  1. Learn the right technique:

    When you lift weights, even if they’re light dumbbells, the wrong technique could cause sprains and muscle pulls. You may not be able to afford a personal trainer or even a gym membership, but there are websites that offer tutorials and tips on the right way to work out with dumbbells. You could also learn the right way to use dumbbells from friends and family members who are workout enthusiasts.

  2. Don’t overdo the weight:

    It’s ok to be enthusiastic and eager to work your muscles, but if you start out with the heaviest ones, you’re going to end up either dropping them on your feet or spraining a muscle trying to lift more than you can. So start out with the lightest dumbbells you can find before moving on to heavier alternatives.

  3. Do the “drop set”:

    If you’re working out with heavy dumbbells and cannot complete your reps because your muscles are aching, put them down and use a lighter pair that you have at hand. This prevents wear and tear and injury on your muscles.

  4. Pick them up correctly:

    When you’re picking up the dumbbells or laying them down, don’t bend from your waist down; instead, go into a half squat and lift them using your thighs for leverage. If you use your back, you could end up with a serious injury if the dumbbells are too heavy.

Choose dumbbell exercises that you’re comfortable with and which tone and strengthen the parts of your body that need firming up. Once you’ve learned a certain set of exercises, it’s easy enough to go through them for just 30 minutes or so every day. However, remember to follow the right safety measures when performing your dumbbell workouts; keep in mind the tips to avoid injury, which could put you out of action.

This guest post is contributed by Maryanne Osberg, who writes on the topic of RN to MSN Online Programs. She can be reached at mary.anne579(AT)gmail(DOT)com.

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Kettlebell Weights – Even better than throwing ‘shit’ around…



Kettlebell Weights – Even better than throwing ‘shit’ around…

It’s a tall order to be calm and dignified all the time. Obama spooks me out for this very reason. I’m not being judgmental of the man here but he’s really chilled out. Don’t suppose he has any moments when he throws things around because he’s just pissed like normal human beings.

Almost everyone of us have been in one of these episodes where you throw and break things because you’ve just about had enough. And you can only appease that anger by destroying some thing, regardless of who valuable it might be at the time…

While there are some of you who might deny being this way, there are those who are – and it’s time that you considered using kettlebells, if only to mimic the quick “throwing movements” that come with this form of exercise.

Kettlebell Weights – Even better than throwing

Even though most people think that kettlebell weights are the latest fitness fad, nothing can be further from the truth. Actually, Russians have been using them years together now, and which was passed on to the military and their Olympians as well.

Of course, Hollywood has taken this form of training and made the most of it and the list of names goes on – Lance Armstrong, Sylvester Stallone, Kim Basinger, Jennifer Lopez, the entire cast of “300” and the legendary Bruce Lee.

And not surprisingly, the US Secret Service and the US Navy Seals have taken it up in training as well.

But what you should keep in mind especially if you’re one of the try-anything types, this form of exercise is not for those with a strained back or shoulders or even a weak core.

One good reason for this is because it is vigorous exercise…

But for those of you who can (and should) take a shot at this type of training, you should know that you can train with these cannonball-like objects with increasing weights of 1/2 a pood (16 kg) such as 8kg, 16kg, 24kg, 32kg, 40kg and 48kg.

Just the mere mention of the word pood should tell you how rich in tradition this form of exercise really is… with its origins in Russia, of course, and yes… as old as vodka itself!

Kettlebell Weights Training: An Overview

Perhaps the best part about working with Kettlebells is that it mimics everyday movements as opposed to other workouts that you find these days. According to some people who have tried this workout, you’re done in 50 minutes or so, in comparison to those who pound away at those weights for two or three weights, way after your testosterone levels are depleted.

But what are the benefits, you might ask?

With a focus on strength, flexibility and cardiovascular training, need I say more?

If that’s not enough, the shoulders, lower back and legs get an excellent workout, thanks to even the most basic exercises such as the swing, snatch and clean & jerk which work on almost all muscles in the body.

And if you are interested, follow this link in order to know more about kettlebell exercises…

In Closing

So much for being able to throw (your) weight around… huh?

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Cardio Music – A Good Companion During Workouts?



Cardio Music – A Good Companion During Workouts?

For a while now, I’ve noticed that whenever I put on a football match or some music while writing, it seems to either help or speed up the process while not hampering quality.

In fact, football players in the United States have been known to listen to classical music while in practice sessions. As bizarre as that is, it not only helps athletes to focus and do well but also students as well as those who take exercise seriously.

Again this depends on the type of workout you choose – if it’s yoga, then the music is definitely Indian, if weights, then some rock would do just fine but if you’re into cardio, then there are digital tracks that one can obtain, and can be found in the genre of cardio music.

The Importance of workout

While anaerobic exercise is important for building strength and increasing energy which is usually built through exercises and that lasts for short bursts.

While men mostly fancy weight lifting, women enjoy a good cardio workout yet it must be said that both these types of workouts are necessary.

Almost anyone would know that cardio involves using the lungs for much longer than you would in weight training. Of course, whether you use a treadmill, stationary cycle, indoor rower or just jog in the neighborhood, this is cardio exercise and require one’s lungs to pump energy for you to last as long as you would.

And trust me, a little cardio music definitely helps in giving you that extra boost when you are exercising whether it’s cardio or even weight training, where one can use machines as well as dumbbells.

Interestingly, there’s also another form of exercise that combines both types: kettlebell weights. Yes, they combine the benefits of both cardio and weight lifting workouts.

Yet there’s nothing like using music to fuel you on when performing any of these workouts, and so let’s look at where we can find cardio music.

So,where Can One Find Cardio Music?

Of course, you can look for workout videos at your nearest store but if one looks over the internet, you will find a treasure trove of cardio music that you couldn’t even imagine.

For starters, if you don’t want to buy anything just yet, sample a few videos from Youtube. Here’s a video that I like very much… and just excellent for those who are into weight training.

Better still, you can look for articles over the internet and make a compilation of the best workout songs that will make you get up and want to put in a hard workout.

(Prior to this, I used tracks from an Israeli goa-cum-progressive trance band called Astral Projection, and workout to their music. And it worked, even though I workout at home.)

Finally, in your search over the internet, you will also find proper compilations at the various stores, like Amazon and so on and so forth. Remember to sample  some of the tracks before purchasing it… or else you’ll waste your money and have to go through the process all over again.

In Closing

So, what do you think about using cardio music in your workouts? Do you find it works? If so, feel free to share your thoughts, as to how they work as an excellent companion during your workouts.

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