Month: August 2017

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What Foods to Eat to Get a Big Upper Chest

Although building an impressive set of pectorals — the muscles of your upper chest — requires dedication to an effective workout plan, you also need to make good nutritional choices. Even if you have the best chest-building workout plan in the world, poor nutrition impairs your progress toward building a big upper chest. Consult a doctor before starting a workout plan or altering your diet dramatically.
Salmon can build chest muscle because it is calorie-dense, with 233 calories in a 4-ounce fillet. This is beneficial because you need to eat a surplus of calories to gain muscle mass. Additionally, salmon is high in protein, the nutrient your body uses for muscle repair and growth, with 25 grams per 4-ounce serving. Last, salmon is high in fat, with 14 grams — less than 3 grams saturated. Fat can promote a beneficial hormonal environment for building upper chest muscle. According to “Effects of Dietary Fat and Fiber on Plasma and Urine Androgens and Estrogens in Men” by J.F. Dorgan et al, increased dietary fat intake promotes higher levels of testosterone, a primary muscle-building hormone.
Another beneficial food choice for bulking up your upper chest is eggs. Like salmon, eggs are rich in both protein and fat. A large egg contains 72 calories, with 4.8 grams of fat and 6.3 grams of protein. Additionally, eggs are a good source of vitamin D. In “Effect of Vitamin D Supplementation on Testosterone Levels in Men,” S. Pilz et al. indicate that higher intake of vitamin D promotes increased testosterone levels, which promotes muscle growth.
Quinoa is a whole grain that provides a rich source of carbohydrates, with 31 grams in each dry 1/4 cup. Your body uses carbohydrates to provide energy for activities such as workouts, so consuming a carbohydrate-rich diet can promote improved exercise performance. Additionally, carbohydrates are vital for muscle recovery after workouts.
Chocolate milk can help enhance your upper chest in conjunction with a well-designed workout plan. Chocolate milk provides both carbohydrates and protein, which are helpful for fueling workouts and recovering from exercise. According to “Acute Effects of Chocolate Milk and a Commercial Recovery Beverage on Postexercise Recovery Indices and Endurance Cycling Performance,” K. Pritchett et al. indicate that chocolate milk is as effective as commercial exercise recovery beverages for promoting workout recovery.


Football Calisthenic Workout

Resistance training is an important part of any football player’s development. Getting stronger can make you faster, more powerful and increase your athleticism. While many football players use barbells, dumbbells, kettlebells and machines in their lifting program, calisthenics, or body-weight exercises can be just as effective, provided you implement and program them correctly.
Pushups and pullups should be part of your upper-body calisthenics routine. As a conditioned athlete, you may find regular pushups too easy, so strength coach Zach Even-Esh recommends trying one-arm pushups or handstand pushups. Alternatively, shoot for a higher number of reps — Even-Esh suggests doing 100 consecutively. As for pullups, not only do they build your back and biceps and have a large carryover to total upper-body strength, they also help prevent injuries by developing these areas, notes trainer Adam Copeland on the Elite Fitness Systems website. Use different grips for your pullups to make them more challenging and to add variety to your routine.
Regular squats and lunges are fine for working your lower body, but they can get a little tedious and probably won’t be too challenging after a while. Instead, try Bulgarian split squats, which you do with your back leg on a bench and front leg on the floor. These strengthen your glutes while improving hip flexibility, which will help you jump further, claims strength coach Joe DeFranco. Plyometric lower-body exercises are also vital for boosting strength and power, so add squat jumps, box jumps, jump lunges and lateral and broad jumps into your workouts.
The best time to make strength gains is during your off-season, when you don’t have the demands of regular games. In “Complete Conditioning for Football,” authors Pat Ivey and Josh Stoner prescribe three body weight calisthenic circuits. The first involves two sets of 20 reps for pushups, split squats and body weight squats. The second one consists of two sets of 20 split jumps, six 15-yard dashes while pushing a weight plate and 20 total pull-ups. The final circuit consists of pushups, squats and inverted rows, which are like a pull-up except you use a bar at chest height and your feet are positioned straight out in front of you on the floor. Do 20 reps of each exercise in two sets.
If these workouts become too easy, there are plenty of ways you can progress your calisthenic workouts. Try adding a sprint after each circuit, or jumping rope instead of taking a complete rest. You can add more exercises, increase your reps or try more advanced movement variations. This could involve holding the squats for three seconds in the bottom position, performing one-and-a-half reps on split squats by going all the way down, halfway up, all the way down again, then all the way up for one rep. Pushups can be made more challenging by using a narrow grip or raising your feet on a box. For chin-ups, take five seconds to lower yourself for each rep.


Nosebleeds After Exercising

When exercising, your heart pumps blood throughout your body at a greater rate as your muscles demand extra oxygen. Some of that blood flows through the little capillaries inside the nose itself. It doesn’t take much to damage these capillaries. If you’re generally sensitive to nosebleeds, you can find that you experience many more nosebleeds after exercising than normal.
A nosebleed takes place when the tiny blood vessels in the soft internal lining of your nose rupture. This rupture can cause a slight trickle of blood or a fairly strong gush until the wound closes. Most nosebleeds stop in about 10 minutes. When your body is warm, blood tends to flow near the skin surface via capillaries. The heat generated while exercising, particularly on a hot day, is enough to increase your chances of a nosebleed.
Running in dry conditions or breathing heavily through your nose can take some of the moisture from your nasal cavity. Nosebleeds are more likely to occur when it’s dry inside the nose. Therefore, rubbing your nose or sneezing after exercise, when the capillaries are dry and sensitive, may be enough to trigger a nosebleed. Keeping well hydrated during exercise can help keep your throat and nasal cavity moist. The Washington University Sinus Institute notes high altitudes can also play a role in nosebleeds. If convenient, opt to exercise in a low-altitude area. For example, if you live in a mountainous area, take jogs in the valley rather than partially up the mountain.
High blood pressure, or hypertension, can trigger nosebleeds in some situations. Hypertension increases the pressure inside your blood vessels. Combined with exercise, this can put a big strain on your arteries, veins and capillaries. The strain can be great enough to cause vessels to burst in your nose and cause a nosebleed. Another possible trigger is the use of blood-thinning medications, such as warfarin. This can increase the chance of nosebleeds in general and after exercise in particular.
Although nosebleeds rarely require a visit to the doctor, in certain situations, medical attention is necessary. If your nosebleed after exercise is the result of a blow to the head, such as after a charge in football or fall during basketball, then you should see a doctor immediately, according to the American Institute for Preventive Medicine. Similarly, if the nosebleed is at the back of your nose and running into your throat, visit a doctor as soon as you can.


Exercises to Improve Power in Soccer

Soccer is a very active sport, one that utilizes several major muscle groups. The muscles primarily used in soccer include the quadriceps at the front of the thighs and the hamstrings at the back, as well as the gastrocnemius and soleus muscles in the calves. For greater power in soccer, target these muscles with several exercises.
The lunge is one of the most effective exercises for the lower body, and the rear lunge in particular targets the quadriceps, one of the main muscles used for kicking and passing the ball in soccer. Stand with a narrow stance, holding a barbell so it rests against the back of your shoulders. While keeping your back straight, lunge back with one leg, lowering down until the knee of your back leg is nearly touching the floor. Return to your standing position, switch leg positions and repeat to complete one rep.
To build strength and power in your upper legs, include the lying hamstrings curl in your workout. On the lying hamstring curl machine, lie face-down, grasp the handles with your hands and secure your feet under the foot pad. Engage your core and inhale, and as you exhale, flex your knees and bring your heels up toward your buttocks. Return to your starting position to complete one rep.
To increase power in your lower body, you need to work the calves. The dumbbell standing calf raise in particular is one of the best for building them. Start in a standing position on a step or platform, with your heels hanging off the edge. Support yourself on a handrail or an adjacent wall for balance. Engage your core to improve your stability, then flex your ankles, raising your heels as high in the air as possible without lifting the balls of your feet. Lower your heels back down to complete one rep.
The lever seated calf press exercise targets the gastrocnemius muscles in your calves, but it also works the smaller soleus muscles. Sit on a leg press machine with your back flat against the back pad and your feet on the platform with your heels hanging off the back. Keep your upper body rigid and extend your legs, pushing the platform forward with your feet until your legs are straight. Return to your original position.
When you’re no longer feeling challenged with the weight you use during an exercise, you need to increase it to avoid a fitness plateau. Just be sure, as the American Council on Exercise warns, to limit the amount of weight you add. Only increase the weight by increments of five to 10 percent when you are able to easily complete 12 reps with proper form. This prevents you from taking on too much weight all at once, which could place excess stress on your body and cause an injury.
Doing cardio not only tones the body and burns calories for fat loss, it also helps enhance your soccer skills by improving your respiratory fitness. Cardio activity involves any form of exercise that increases your heart rate and improves the uptake of oxygen by your body. Focus on cardio exercises that engage the lower body, for example, jumping jacks, rope jumping , burpees, squat jumps and cycling.


What Are the Benefits of Netball?

Netball is a game similar to basketball, but there are a few notable differences between the two. In netball, there are seven players per team. You’re not allowed to dribble the ball, it must be passed between players by throwing. The ball and basket are smaller and there isn’t a backboard. Despite these game differences, the health benefits of netball are comparable to basketball.
Playing netball requires you to run around the pitch, sprint short distances and change direction quickly. The running skills involved provide a good cardiovascular workout and over time will improve your fitness, strength and agility. The standard netball court is 100 feet long and 50 feet wide. As a netball game progresses, many of the players will cover some significant distance running around the court. In particular, the player in center position has to cover most of it.
Netball requires players to pass the ball to members of their own team using different throwing techniques. Each requires and develops good hand-eye coordination; a player must throw and catch the ball accurately. A high pass sends the netball over opponents’ heads, and the player’s teammate must usually jump to catch the ball from a high pass. A chest pass is a fast throw at chest height from one teammate to another; a bounce pass sends the ball to and from waist height with a single bounce on the ground.
In comparison to basketball, the game of netball does not allow any individual player to operate independently. Many of the player positions in netball are restricted to less than half the pitch — for example, the goal shooter is allowed only in the opposing team’s goal area. Likewise, the goal attack and goal defense positions are limited to roughly one-third of the total pitch. Only the goal attack and goal shooter positions are allowed to make attempts at scoring. Therefore, the netball team must cooperate to attack, defend and score goals.
In comparison to many sports, netball requires very little in the way of special equipment or facilities. A netball pitch with two goals is all that is required for a game, regular team practice or a tournament. Many of the individual skills required of the netball player — running, marking opponents, attacking and defending the goal — can be practiced on any level ground. No specific clothing is needed unless team uniforms are worn. Regular athletic clothing and sports shoes will suffice for practice and unofficial games.


Diet for Netballers

Eating properly is critical for an athlete playing any sport. A netball game ¡ª the same length as an American football game, except for the half-time break, which is only a few minutes ¡ª is particularly demanding. Much like basketball, netball players need lots of energy, stamina and strength to play multiple games per week.
Since netball has very little individual forward movement and a lot of team play, your team is counting on you to be energized and ready to play when the game starts. Because you may have to train for netball while simultaneously concentrating on work or school, you need to plan your diet the best you can, according to the Australian Institute of Sport.
The International Netball website recommends high-carbohydrate foods about two hours before game time. Also, make sure you eat slowly and chew food thoroughly to help the digestive process. Some effective foods to eat include rice, pasta and a baked potato. Also, if you’re too nervous before the game, your body won’t absorb vitamins and minerals as effectively. You need to stay calm by reassuring yourself of your abilities.
Drinking water during the game is important, but the pre- and post-game meal should include it as well. Include water with every meal and snack you eat. Before the game, drink about 0.06 gallons of water, advises the Sports Dietitians of Australia at the Gifted Athlete Program website. Regardless of whether you play in hot or moderate temperatures, you can still become dehydrated. Weigh yourself both prior to and after the game. This helps determine how much water you’ve lost on the court. If you lose 2.2 lbs., drink about 0.4 gallons of water.
The ample physical contact in netball may destroy red blood cells and cause an iron deficiency. High iron foods that should be part of your diet include cereal, spinach and red meat, according to the Australian Institute of Sport. Preferably, choose a lean cut of red meat. Consume plant and animal iron sources together to help the body absorb the iron more efficiently.
Make sure to plan a snack for after the game. Some healthy snack foods include sandwiches, fruit and a sports drink. Before your team travels to another city for a game, make a schedule for when you should be eating.

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