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    7 Common Sports Injuries: Causes, Prevention, and Treatment

    Low side plank twists are a rotator cuff workout that strengthen shoulder stabilizer muscles. 5. Tennis Elbow and Golfer’s ElbowCause: Tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow do not just affect tennis players and golfers. Any athlete or professional who uses their forearm muscles repeatedly and regularly can suffer. Both are a result of tiny tears in the muscle caused by inflammation of the tissues around the elbow. Tennis elbow pain is felt on the outside of the elbow. Golfer’s elbow creates pain on the inside of the elbow.Prevention: Surprisingly, lack of mobility in the wrist and shoulder are often culprits of elbow pain. Include wrist and shoulder warm-ups, activation, and mobilization exercises in your normal workouts. Consider doing them before any activity that requires repetitive arm movements, like gardening or typing on a laptop.Treatment: An injured elbow can get better with time and rest. Cold compresses during moments of pain help reduce inflammation as does a diet of anti-inflammatory foods. A physical therapist may also provide wrist, elbow, and shoulder exercises. In very bad cases, surgery may be required to remove damaged tissues.(6)  Caption: Stretching the shoulders and wrists before a workout can help with elbow pain. 6. Groin Strain and Sports HerniaCause: Sports hernias are clinically named athletic pubalgia. These and general groin strains are most common to athletes who change direction quickly, tennis players. Sports that require frequent twisting and bending (like rowing) can also cause groin strains. These injuries are more typically related to overuse. But, any biomechanical pattern could cause these injuries. For instance, many people have one leg that’s longer than the other. These kinds of muscle imbalances can cause problems throughout the kinetic chain that put pressure on the groin during movement. Long-distance runners, women with relative osteoporosis, and anyone with nutritional and hormonal imbalances are also susceptible to groin injuries.Prevention: The best way to prevent any injury around the pelvis is with hip stretching and stability exercises. Lower and deep core work are very beneficial. Getting to know your own muscle imbalances is important. Then, you can train in such a way as to strengthen opposing muscles and correct postural imbalances. Because having strong bones is a big precursor to a healthy pelvis, proper sports nutrition is key (i.e., enough calories, enough macronutrients, and enough micronutrients). Finally, changes in the training surface or shoes can cause groin strain. Start with shorter workouts when venturing out onto new terrain or wearing new shoes.Treatment: Generally speaking, it’s best to avoid intense physical movements until the pain subsides. Because issues in the groin and pelvis are so difficult to diagnose, most cases require sports physiotherapy.  The sports physician will determine the rehabilitation plan based on the location of the tear. Some types of injury require rest, while others require more aggressive movement therapy. In the worst case scenario, surgery may be required.(7, 8, 9)  Single leg bridges are a great way to strengthen the muscles of the pelvis and low back.7. Hamstring injuryCause: Hamstring tears and pulled hamstrings most often occur when one pushes off the ground to walk, run, or climb. For folks with very weak or tight hamstrings, this injury can even occur when standing up from a seated position. Any one of the three hamstrings muscles may be affected. Older adults are more likely to suffer from hamstring injury than young people.Prevention: The best way to prevent hamstring issues is by training them with strength and flexibility workouts. Simply exercises like deadlifts and seated forward folds go a long way.Treatment: Hamstring pain is difficult to treat because it affects so many basic actions, like moving from seated to standing. It can heal on its own with rest. But in case of intense pain, walking with a cane or crutches helps. Icing the area and wrapping it can keep inflammation down. Consider working with a physiotherapist if the pain does not subside on its own in three weeks. With physical therapy, the recovery time typically takes six to eight weeks.(10) Moving in and out of this stretch is a dynamic warm-up for hamstring mobility.Nutritional Advice for Sports InjuriesWhen recovering from a sports injury, one of the best things you can do is eat well. Here is a list of micro- and macronutrients that can aid in recovery. We recommend eating whole, fresh foods containing these nutrients.1. Protein-rich foodsProtein, especially that derived from mammals and fish, enhances the body’s muscle-building processes (vegan protein sources should be supplemented with amino acids like Lutein).(11)2. Vitamin CCollagen rebuilds tissues and is anti-inflammatory. Citrus fruit and leafy green vegetables are rich in Vitamin C, which helps the body to produce collagen. 3. Omega-3 Fatty AcidsOmega-3s are anti-inflammatory and building blocks for the body’s cellular recovery processes. Salmon, sardines, chia seeds, walnuts, and soybeans are all-natural sources of Omega-3 fats.4. Calcium and Vitamin DFractures, dislocations, and sports hernias are all related to weak or impacted bones. Calcium builds bones. Milk, cheese, yogurt, some fish, almonds, and kale are all great sources of calcium. But without Vitamin D, the body cannot absorb calcium. So eat some egg yolks or go for a jog in the sun! Both fill you up with Vitamin D.Prevention is The Best MedicineUnfortunately, most athletes will at some point find themselves injured. It’s part of being alive, of having a complex body and love of movement! But the best way to prevent an injury is to be thoughtful about movement, health, and body awareness. Cross-training, taking time to recover, eating well, and listening to your body are, ultimately, the best medicine for sports injuries.*** More

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    Effective Workouts: Training Tips to Get Results

    It’s so important to set goals when pursuing a new workout regimen or training plan. Having success markers in-mind can help you stay motivated on days when you’re tired. Goals help you to choose what kinds of exercises to do and their frequency.So, after putting in all of this effort, how long does it take to see results?Most new exercisers notice that they feel more energetic within a couple of weeks. Your posture will improve and you’ll feel more muscle tone. Gains in performance, like lean muscle mass and cardiovascular endurance, require around three months of regular effort. (1, 2)Here are five tips that can help you reach your new fitness goals in a fun, sustainable way! Use them, and you’ll cut down how long to see results from working out.1. Start slowlySo, when do you start seeing results from working out? Slowly, and that’s a good thing. Since people are generally very motivated when they start working out, the tendency is to overdo it. Training very frequently and intensely might feel effective at first, but this will drain your body of energy pretty quickly (both in the workout and days afterward). The result is a drop in performance, which may affect motivation and make the workouts less fun.Exercise Science 101:Your circulatory system needs time to adjust to exercise and frequency. This can take days or even weeks, depending on the exercise intensity. Your muscles, tendons, joints, and ligaments require a similar adaption time. And this adaptation is mostly physical! Amazingly, neurons adapt their ability to transmit electrical impulses between the brain and muscles within minutes.Give your body the time it needs! Keep your mind focused on the end-goal. Learn more about neuromuscular adaptations to specific kinds of exercise in this Physiopedia article.Starting slowly, but frequently, will help you get through the initial (irksome) hump of training. In fact, after you’ve created a regular workout schedule and stuck to it, maintaining your fitness might literally be a walk in the park. The Center for Disease Control states that, “After a person has obtained gains in VO˙2 max by performing cardiorespiratory exercise six times per week, two to four times per week is the optimal frequency of training to maintain those gains.” In summary: work hard and regularly now, relax later, and continue to reap the benefits.2. Set goalsWhen setting goals, it helps to have a specific target in mind. It might be something quantitative, like completing a cycling race. It could also be qualitative, like feeling more energetic every day. The important thing is to also plan medium-term goals. These will motivate you along the way and help you to keep an eye on your current fitness levels. Participating in relaxed races throughout the year is a strategy to keep you motivated, help you stay focused, and a great way to meet new workout buddies!The goal you set defines your training:Lose weight, gain muscle, or improve endurance without losing muscle mass — the training method and combination of workouts you choose depends on your goal. Don’t forget to pay attention to your nutrition. After all, how you fuel your body has a powerful impact on your progress. You can find loads of helpful nutrition and workout tips on our blog.These 5 tips can help you set your personal goal:[embedded content]3. Make a long-term planThe best part about setting medium-term goals is that you’re more likely to reach them — and feel the associated positive buzz from success. But what happens next? Fitness is a habit, a lifestyle, and a contributor to longevity. Yes, sticking to a new training plan is the first hurdle. But ignoring the end-of-the-end is a recipe for slipping back into “Netflix and chill.”While you are still in the first training phase, plan how your medium-term goals will stack up to an overall change in your quality of life. What will it feel like when you can run a 5K with ease? What new adventures will you be able to pursue? As you consider kickstarting your new exercise schedule, start researching hiking vacations, sporty hobbies, and even life-altering decisions (like having a child) as well. Once you’re fit enough to accept them, the world will send many opportunities your way! By musing on the long-term while following a short-term schedule with medium-term goals, you’ll be able to envision a fit life. Changing your diet and setting new goals can help you maintain the progress you’ve made or move things up a notch.Find a plan that works for you:Don’t get discouraged if your friends lose weight or gain muscle faster than you. All people respond differently to the same exercise program (none of us has the same DNA). No matter whether your training is focused on strength or cardiovascular endurance: long-term goals have to be right for you, and your progress is specific to you. The most effective workouts are ones that fit the needs of the person doing them!4. Exercise Regularly And ContinuouslyThere is one important question you should ask yourself right at the start: how much time and energy do you want to invest in your training? Make a realistic plan based on your feasible time commitments. There are always interruptions, but you’ll be less likely to fall off your training with foresight and planning. Beginners and those returning to exercise after a break will see results quite quickly (yay!). Your continuous commitment will ensure that you continue to see fitness gains. The more advanced you are, the harder it might be to see a tangible improvement to your performance. Don’t get discouraged!For the most noticeable changes in physique, try strength training. Especially for those new to exercise, strength training results in a metabolic boost that will continue throughout cardio exercise and in daily life. 5. Implement Progressive Overload And Adequate RecoveryIn order to achieve any gains in fitness, you must continuously challenge your physical body to near-failure. Don’t worry: in the exercise world, the term “training to failure” is a good thing! Progressive overload occurs within a single workout and with each workout over time. For instance, in a sprint workout with 4 sets of 100 meters, the runner should strive to go faster with each dash. Over the course of a month, every time that the athlete does this workout, they should try to start/ end faster than the last.According to the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), “With any training regimen the body is always in a state of adaptation. To continuously improve performance over time, your training must be modified to increase the acute variables and progressively overload the muscles.” Of course, this isn’t always possible. Some weeks are easier than others (especially for women). But, tracking your progress and bumping up the challenge when a workout gets easy ensures that you will never plateau. Or, worse, muscle atrophy.The progressive overload followed by an appropriate recovery phase helps you get the most out of your training. The supercompensation model leads to a drop in performance when not followed by adequate rest time for muscular regeneration. If you don’t give yourself time to recover, you will end up overtraining, which has a negative effect on your results. As this University of New Mexico (UNM) article dictates, there are three kinds of recovery:Natural recovery that happens during movement, like the rest one leg while the other leg strides (“immediate recovery”)Rest between sets or repetitions of an exercise (“short term recovery”)Rest between workout sessions (“training recovery”)The authors explain, “The greater the stress of the workout, the greater the overall muscle recruitment, and the greater the potential for muscle damage and soreness, therefore the need for longer recovery time.”So, how much recovery time should you get?The UNM article states: “For untrained individuals and trained individuals a frequency of 3 and 2 days, respectively, per week per muscle group is optimal, which translates to 1-2 days rest between sessions. However, this will vary depending on total volume of resistance training, individual training status, and overall goals (e.g., training for hypertrophy, strength, endurance, etc.).”Remember:Start slowly and give your body time to adjust to new training stress.6. Use The Right Exercise TechniqueFast, hard, and frequent — these are the words often used to describe what people imagine to be the perfect workout. But if you have poor form when you do the exercises, you’ll likely work other muscles/ functions than those that you’re intending to target. Worse yet, you can injure a muscle instead of strengthening it. Problems that arise from improper training are often noticed later on. By then, you may have already learned to do many exercises the wrong way. In order to get the results you want, you have to do the exercises correctly.7. Physiological Differences Between GendersNot too long ago, many sports practitioners thought that women should train just like men do. As we gain scientific understanding of the difference between men’s and women’s bodies, we’re learning that men and women should train differently, and will react to training differently. It is true that men and women are physiologically similar in that both burn fat by building and maintaining muscle mass. The main difference is that women don’t tire as easily(3) and recover faster than men. This is partially because women have less body mass, which means their muscles can be supplied with oxygen more efficiently. According to one study, estrogen may have protective effects on skeletal muscle  and may therefore shorten necessary recovery time.What’s that mean? Women may benefit from more frequent lower-intensity exercise. Men’s bodies may respond better to less-frequent, higher-intensity sessions. Good to know:Genetically, women have more body fat and lower muscle mass than men. Men also have more than ten times more testosterone. When women exercise, the fat-burning process is stimulated to a higher degree, while muscle growth is activated more easily in men. You can read more about muscle growth in women on our blog. Both women and men experience increased testosterone levels when they exercise, although men to a greater extent.The Bottom LineWith commitment, time, progressive overload and rest, you will see results and gains within three months of beginning your new fitness plan. Consider the tips listed above when planning your training goals and workouts. The key is to assess how much time you are prepared to invest in your workout. That way, you’ll have the most realistic expectations and the greatest ease sticking to a plan.Need help getting started? The adidas Training and adidas Running apps are full of workout plans and accountability mechanisms! *** More

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    Pregnancy Exercise: All You Need to Know Before You Start

    Pregnancy, especially the first one, brings up a lot of questions. And while exercise is generally advisable for pregnant women, it can be hard to figure out what exactly to do.You’ll find everything you need to know here:Answers to the most common questions regarding safe pregnancy exerciseSpecific trimester tips and other tips for prenatal workoutsTraining plan examplesPrenatal home workouts in the adidas Training app1. Who should not exercise during pregnancy?In uncomplicated pregnancies, exercise is highly encouraged (see Pregnancy exercise benefits). However, there are certain conditions in which exercise is not permitted (absolute contraindications) or allowed only under special supervision (relative contraindications).(1)Keep in mind: You should always get approval from your doctor before starting any exercise during pregnancy.Absolute contraindicationsMultiple pregnancies at risk of premature labor Persistent 2nd trimester or 3rd trimester bleedingPlacenta previa after 26 weeks of gestation Premature labor during current pregnancyRuptured chorioamniotic membranes Preeclampsia or pregnancy-induced hypertension Severe anemia Certain types of heart and lung disease Incompetent cervix or cerclageRelative contraindications: AnemiaChronic bronchitisPoorly controlled type 1 diabetes, hypertension, hyperthyroidism, or seizure disorderExtreme obesity or underweightHistory of extremely sedentary lifestyleIntrauterine growth restriction in current pregnancyUnevaluated maternal cardiac arrhythmia Orthopedic limitationsHeavy smokerBefore you begin exercising, make sure to also check the warning signs to know when you should stop exercising.2. What kind of exercise is safe? Even though the doctor has cleared you for exercise, the changes you experience during pregnancy might still make you wonder what kind of exercise is safe. Unsafe sports during pregnancy(2)Sports with a high risk of falling or injury (i.e. skiing, climbing, horseback riding, martial arts, diving, surfing, etc.)Contact sports like soccer, handball, and basketballLifting weights heavier than you are used to and need to strain to liftCompetitive sports and races, unless you are an athlete supervised by coach and doctorActivities at high altitudes ( > 2500 m/8,200 ft) and high temperatures (hot yoga)Scuba divingMost other sports activities are generally safe, but you still need to consider your individual experience and skill level. If you were…Active before pregnancy – can you keep doing what you were doing?If you were active before pregnancy, you can consider continuing with the same or similar activities, unless they’re on the above-mentioned list of unsafe sports. You need to consider your physical changes (see Exercise Tips and Adjusting to Your Trimester) that may require necessary modifications and adjust the intensity (see How intensely can you exercise while pregnant).Not active before pregnancy – can you start exercising?Yes, but you need to do it gradually. Start at a low intensity (where you can normally keep a conversation while active), working out continuously for 10 minutes. You can start with 10-minute walks, too.Over the next 2-4 weeks, aim to increase the duration of the workout (or walk) to 30 to 45 minutes and the intensity to a moderate level (see How intensely can you exercise while pregnant). This will entirely depend on how your body responds to the exercise and how your pregnancy evolves.(3)Prenatal workouts such as Short Seated Stretching and Yoga Inspired Mobility in the adidas Training app can be a great start. Pregnancy is unpredictable. So instead of setting expectations, aim to be content with knowing that you are doing the best you can, while at the same time honoring your current situation, whatever that is.Make sure to check the warning signs to know if you should stop exercising.3. How to choose the best pregnancy workoutPregnancy is a unique opportunity to learn what it really means to “listen to your body”. Choosing the best activity depends not only on your previous experience and preference, you should also consider the current state of your body (and mind). Golden rule: The best pregnancy workout is the one that makes you feel better – more energized or relaxed – than when you started (and not more tired or nervous). Physical changes from pregnancy that may affect exercise(4,5,6)Abdominal muscles get stretched, the core is less efficient in handling loads and pressure Changes in postural balance make pregnant women more likely to sustain a fallHormonal changes causing increased breast size, relaxed ligaments, swelling, fatigue all directly affect how you feel before, during, and after exercise.Oxygen requirements increase, making it harder to sustain longer or intense exerciseIt gets harder to stay hydrated. Drink more water and watch out for signs of dehydrationPostural changes such as changes in the curvature of the lower spine and rounding of the shoulders affect movement The expansion of the belly changes the rib and diaphragm position, affecting breathing.Considerations for different types of activitiesTip:If you like exercise classes, make sure to look for a qualified prenatal instructor and inform them that you are pregnant before starting.Strength TrainingRecommended to support muscle function, improve posture, and metabolism. There is no need to completely avoid resistance training in pregnancy; it can be adapted.Can be done with weights or just using your body weight. There are no specific weight limitations. It depends on your fitness routine and experience before pregnancy. Do not lift anything that requires you to strain or hold your breath. This might be a loaded barbell for some, while dumbbells may be too much for others. A general rule to follow is: never “max out” and stick to higher rep ranges, ending the set when you feel like you could still do some reps. Try the 25-Minute Full-Body Pump and Full-Body Strength prenatal workouts in the adidas Training app.Stretching & Pregnancy YogaMake sure not to overstretch; only stretch as far as is comfortable. Consider avoiding any poses that include backbends, strong and rapid contractions of the abdominal muscles, holding your breath, deep twists, inversions… Try the Yoga Inspired Mobility and Short Seated Stretching workouts in the adidas Training app. For more advanced workouts, qualified supervision is advised (instructor or coach with certification for prenatal workouts).CardioStick to moderate intensities (check out How intensely can you exercise while pregnant?)Avoid any jumping, high-impact, or bouncing movements. The Low-Impact Cardio workout from the adidas Training app was created especially for pregnancy cardio at home.You can keep running during pregnancy if you were running before, as long as you keep the intensity moderate and stop the instant anything begins to feel “off” (pelvic floor heaviness or any other symptom). If you were not running before, stick to walking workouts during pregnancy.Other cardio ideas: swimming, stationary cycling…What’s best? Staying active by combining different types of workouts will bring the best results. For example, a combination of strength and cardio will have a greater effect on reducing the risk for gestational diabetes.(7) 4. Pregnancy Training PlanWhen it comes to prenatal workouts, the most important thing is to listen to your body, not follow a set schedule. That’s why you can find examples of two completely different training plan weeks for pregnancy. These are suggestions only; they show you how much a training plan can depend on our energy levels and current state. You can get all workouts in the adidas Training app and use them according to what feels best!DownloadRemember:At any point in your pregnancy, you might experience changes that require you to modify your fitness plan. Embrace the changes and look for other options. Never push your way through a plan for the sake of discipline.5. How intensely can you exercise while pregnant?The easiest way to measure intensity is the talk test:(8)Can you still hold a conversation while exercising, even though it might be a bit harder? If you have to stop to finish a sentence or pause to be able to breathe normally, the workout is too intense.When it comes to prenatal exercise, it’s essential to keep the intensity moderate. What this means, however, can be different for each person and can also be measured differently.(9)What does moderate intensity feel like? You could continue the activity for a longer period, even though your breathing is getting slightly heavier. It might be more difficult to sustain a conversation, but still possible. Singing would not be an option. You start sweating but are not yet on the verge of feeling uncomfortable.Use a measurement scale: On a scale of 1 to 10, your effort should not feel like more than 6; ideally, it would be between 4 and 6.Doctors and coaches can advise more experienced athletes on how to train at higher intensities.Keep in mind:Some days, the same workout will feel much harder or easier than another day. Don’t worry, this is completely normal. Don’t get stressed out and modify it or choose another workout to be able to keep the intensity moderate.What should my heart rate be during pregnancy exercise?The 140 bpm limit for pregnancy exercise is outdated. Published expert guidelines around the world do not agree on a single number that applies to all pregnant women.(10) A better approach is to modify the intensity based on your perceived effort as explained above.6. Warning signs – when to stop exercisingIf you notice these warning signs at any point during the workout, stop the workout and consult your doctor:(11)Dizziness or feeling faintVaginal bleeding Shortness of breath before starting to exerciseChest pain or abdominal painHeadacheMuscle weakness affecting balanceCalf pain or swellingRegular, painful uterine contractions Fluid gushing or leaking from your vagina7. How often should you work out during pregnancy? 20-30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per day on most or all days of the week is considered ideal.(12) However, the ideal fitness routine is not always realistic. Pregnancy is a time when you need to honor the current state of your body. Some days you can do more, others less, or you might even need to just take a day off to rest.Can you work out every day if you feel good? It is best to take rest days from working out (at a moderate intensity), but stay active (with low-intensity activities). You should definitely, as much as your energy allows, be active every day. Movement is healthy and it doesn’t always have to be exercise!Check out the weekly training plan suggestions to get an idea of how to adjust workouts to your energy levels.8. Exercise tips – pelvic floor, breathing, postureEven if you have always exercised regularly, your body will change during pregnancy. It’s important to consider these educational tips when working out.Your Pelvic Floor and Kegel ExercisesWhat is the pelvic floor? The pelvic floor is a group of muscles that support the bladder, bowel, and uterus. These are located inside the pelvis. Among other things, they are important for sexual function, stabilization of your core during movement, and preventing incontinence. Why is the pelvic floor important for pregnancy exercise? Pregnancy affects the pelvic floor, mostly by increasing the pressure on it. It can lead to complications such as prolapse or incontinence. You need to watch out for symptoms such as a feeling of heaviness, the sense that something is “falling out of your vagina”, or pain in the pelvic area. This helps you react early enough, modify activities, and avoid further complications. Should you be doing special exercises for the pelvic floor (Kegels)?Doing Kegel exercises can help you get familiar with your pelvic floor muscles and learn how to contract and relax them (both are equally important!). That is crucial for your pelvic health, also later in the postpartum period. However, more is not always better. The pelvic floor works also when you just walk or do other types of work, so don’t overdo it. Based on current research, specific pelvic floor training during pregnancy can decrease the risk for urinary incontinence and may reduce the symptoms of existing urinary incontinence in pregnant women(13,14). If you had a high BMI ( >30) before pregnancy, are over 35 years old, experience coughing, or have a family history of incontinence, it is worth considering adding specific pelvic floor muscle training during pregnancy. A general approach is to do 3 sets of 8 repetitions of Kegels, 2 times a day. Pelvic floor muscle training can also be part of your existing workout, like in some of the prenatal workouts in the adidas Training app.Important:When experiencing pain or heaviness in the pelvic area, always consult your healthcare provider before starting an exercise plan on your own.Breathing During Pregnancy ExerciseBreathing is an important part of core stabilization, as it regulates the pressure inside your abdomen. This is even more important during pregnancy, as the growing belly presents an even bigger challenge. It pushes up your diaphragm and restricts its movement. What to focus on during pregnancy breathing exercises Work on rib cage mobility and diaphragm expansion to practice the 360 breathing pattern, where the whole torso expands in all directions, instead of directing the breath only to the upper chest or pushing the belly out. Pregnancy yoga is a great way to get in touch with your breathing. Try the Yoga Inspired Mobility workout or practice for a few minutes every day using exercises such as Side Lying Breathing, Kneeling 360 Breathing, all available in the adidas Training app.Inhale: feel the side and back ribs expand (instead of inhaling into the upper chest and shoulders), relax the pelvic floor and let it “fill with air”.Exhale: feel the pelvic floor move back up and in as the abdomen and rib cage deflateMatch the exhale phase to higher efforts during exercise; avoid holding your breath!Start to practice engaging your deep core muscles (especially m. transversus abdominis), for a couple of minutes each day. This will be especially useful to rebuild core strength postpartum. By adding a pelvic floor contraction to your exhale, you can try to feel your lower abs gently pulling in. If you stand in front of a mirror you should see your belly pull in, while the belly button should ideally not move up. Make sure to relax and inhale fully (releasing the pelvic floor) before each repetition. Try to let the pelvic floor relax naturally as you inhale, and then feel it contract, activate and lift back up as you exhale. Contracting the muscles with more intensity is not better; this is an exercise in awareness.Posture and AlignmentThe weight of your growing belly pulls you forward, which you adapt to and compensate for with your posture. Working on body awareness can help you notice and improve your posture in exercise and in daily life. That way you can build muscles for better alignment, enabling you to distribute the load more equally. It’s also more comfortable in the long term.Posture tips for exercise and daily lifeWhen getting up from a lying position or relaxed sitting on a couch, always roll to your side first and then get up by supporting yourself with your arm.During exercise, keep your chin tucked and ribs aligned over your hips.Check your alignment as often as you can, try to align your ribs over hips, pull your chin back, and use your glutes for support instead of locking your knees.9. Adjust the Workouts to Your TrimesterKeep in mind:Embrace the changes and keep adjusting to what your body is capable of at the moment. These adjustments aren’t permanent, but you don’t want to push too hard and possibly cause permanent issues.Can you lie on your back to exercise while pregnant? Lying on your back for longer periods of time carries some risk, once the weight of the belly is heavy enough to press down on the venous system/blood flow. Exercise promotes blood flow, which is why supine exercise is different from just lying down; it is still safe in most cases. Check with your doctor or midwife if you are unsure. Monitor for dizziness or other uncomfortable feelings. Using pillows under your back to lift up your upper body (at least 15 degrees) will reduce any risks.(15)Can you do Squats?If you don’t have any heaviness or feeling of bearing down in the pelvic floor, you can keep doing squats throughout your pregnancy. Adjust the depth and width of your stance for your comfort. Make sure not to hold your breath. What about abdominal muscle exercises? Exercises that place extra load on the front abs, such as Planks, Sit Ups, Push Ups, Mountain Climbers, Leg Raises will become uncomfortable at some point during your pregnancy. That’s when it’s time to work your core in other ways, especially through breathing and stabilization. Monitor your body for any signs of bulging/doming on the midline of your abs and modify the exercise or skip it. See more under 2nd-trimester tips.First TrimesterFatigue and nausea might increase. Adjust the workout volume, and accept that you have to cut down for now to avoid pushing yourself.Your weight might quickly start to change and you might get hungrier. Pay attention to whether you are experiencing uncomfortable feelings of guilt related to food and trying to compensate with exercise. If this persists, consider working on mindfulness in your relationship with food and your body, seeking help if needed.When tired and in doubt, sleep instead of working out. In most cases, you’ll have more energy during the 2nd trimester.Practicing breathing and connecting the breath to the pelvic floor will pay off in the future, especially during postpartum recovery (see Exercise Tips above). Consider focusing more on the upper body and glute strength to support the upcoming postural changes and loads (growing belly and breast size). You can find lots of prenatal exercise ideas in the adidas Training app. Second TrimesterAs your belly starts to grow, it’s time to watch out for bearing down. This is the sensation of pushing down on your pelvic floor when you need extra support (similar to how you might strain when having a bowel movement). It can be a compensatory strategy to handle the additional pressure. When you engage your abs, the belly should slightly draw in, without a sensation of pushing down on the pelvic floor. If not, modify and/or stop the exercise. Look for a coach or physical therapist who can teach you better strategies to handle the load in person.Are you starting to feel a pulling sensation when tightening your abs? Does the midline on your abs start to come up under effort, creating a doming/bulging look? The diastasis rectus abdominis, a separation of the abdominal muscles, occurs naturally as the belly grows. Most exercises that work the front abs might become uncomfortable in the late second and third trimesters. That’s when they should be replaced with an easier version (that you can still control without bearing down or holding your breath) or avoided entirely.Practice engaging deep core muscles instead with exercises such as Breathing Leg Pointers, Quadruped Tuck, Heel Slides, and many more you can find in the adidas Training app. The home prenatal workouts featured in the app are designed to minimize the front loading.Third TrimesterPosture and movement strategies keep changing as the belly grows and might aggravate existing pain points or create new pain. Common problems in pregnancy are pubic symphysis pain, located on your pubic bone; a feeling of heaviness in the pelvic floor; lower or upper back pain. Monitor yourself for changes and types of pain and consult your doctor. Modify and adjust exercises accordingly. For pubic bone pain avoid single-leg exercises (and other asymmetric exercises) and narrow your squat stance. When it comes to heaviness in the pelvic floor, scale down the movements (avoid weights, adjust depth and stance for lower body exercises) and intensity. For chronic lower and upper back pain, try mobility flows such as Yoga Inspired Mobility in the adidas Training app. Remember to consult your doctor before starting a pregnancy exercise program, especially when feeling pain or discomfort.Stability starts to be affected, so make sure you find your balance before starting any exercise move; this is especially important as the belly gets bigger.Breathing gets harder each day – work on rib mobility and maintaining a full, 360-degree breathing pattern, with side and back expansion of the ribs and the connection to the pelvic floor. You can include an exercise such as Kneeling 360 Breathing from the adidas Training app to your daily routine, if even for just 5 minutes.Pay special attention to signs of pelvic floor dysfunction such as baby feeling very low, difficulty starting urination, evacuating bowels, urine leakage during exercise, or – check with a pelvic floor physiotherapist and modify your workouts to avoid anything that causes symptoms.Reduce walking times if long walks start to cause discomfort, primarily in the pelvic or lower back area. Plan some rest after workouts whenever possible.When strength exercises feel uncomfortable, opt for more seated and side-lying exercises, such as the Short Seated Stretching and the Yoga Inspired Mobility in the adidas Training app.It gets harder to stay hydrated; make sure you drink water throughout the day, especially when you work out outdoors or sweat.Pregnancy Exercise BenefitsResearch has shown that regular exercise is not only good for the expectant mother but the child as a fetus and into childhood, too.(16) If you need some extra motivation to start, here are the key benefits of prenatal exercise.Exercise in pregnancy…eases common pregnancy-related problems like backache, posture issues, and constipationreduces your risk of gestational diabetesincreases the supply of oxygen for you and your childstrengthens your cardiovascular system, making you feel fitter and more resilient, which might also help you handle the strain of giving birthmight help prevent blood clots and varicose veinscould improve the quality of your sleepenhances your general sense of well-being and helps with mood swings and stressTakeawayAt first it may seem at first like exercising during the prenatal period is really complicated. However, your body will tell you a lot of important information to guide you.Pregnancy is an opportunity to learn what it really means to “listen to your body”. You might encounter roadblocks, but if you don’t give up, you will also discover new strategies for self-care and awareness, which will also be useful postpartum.Remember, staying active throughout your pregnancy benefits both you and the baby.*** More

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    7 Exercises to Build Strong Shoulders Without Weights

    Today we’re talking about the shoulders. Now it might seem more intuitive for a man to train his shoulders because “men need and want strong arms,” right?Wrong! Everybody needs to strengthen their shoulders because, while the shoulder is extremely mobile, it’s also extremely unstable and susceptible to injury.Some words on shoulder injuries:Shoulder injuries are really common because the potential range of motion is great, yet not very many people do what it takes to strengthen and work on shoulder flexibility.If that’s not enough reason for you, strong and defined shoulders can create the illusion of making your waist appear smaller. Now you’re listening…While many of us aren’t really thinking about the role our shoulders play in everyday activities, let me remind you: bringing in the groceries, lifting up the kids, picking things up off of the floor and putting them in the closet, cleaning up — you’re using your shoulders.What Exercise is Best for the Shoulders?You can try out the bodyweight exercises listed below to help build strong shoulders while strengthening all the tendons, ligaments, and muscle tissue (of course!). And the great thing, you don’t even need equipment such as weights at all.Shoulder Muscles Anatomy: What Are the 3 Shoulder Muscles?Before we start, let me give you a super quick shoulder muscles anatomy lesson. The deltoid is the main muscle in the shoulder.It is a large, triangular-shaped muscle. Even though it is one muscle, due to its size and different muscle fibers, it is usually talked about in three parts:anterior (front) deltoidmedial (side) deltoidposterior (rear) deltoidThe anterior, medial, and posterior parts of the deltoid help move the arm and stabilize the shoulder joint. But they do not work alone. There are many more muscles supporting the shoulder joint. The so-called rotator cuff muscles are a good example. Hidden below the larger deltoid, they are not the first thing you notice when you look at your shoulder. However, these four small muscles on the back of your shoulder play an extremely important part in arm movements and stabilization.We’re going to hit all of these with the following exercises so you strengthen your shoulders and stay pain- and injury-free.What Exercises Build Shoulder Muscles? ► 7 Exercises for Anterior, Medial & Posterior Deltoid Muscle GrowthFrom simple beginner exercises to advanced: Here are shoulder exercises to build your shoulder strength at home, without equipment, no matter what your current fitness level is. Plus: Don’t miss the bonus postural exercise at the end! 1. Plank-to-Down Dog How to Do a Plank-To-Down Dog:This is a great move for shoulder flexibility — especially the rotator cuff. You don’t need to perform this exercise quickly. Take your time. This is actually a good bodyweight warm-up exercise before you start your shoulder training.2. Inclined Wall Push-Ups How to Do Inclined Wall Push-Ups:Having your upper body higher than your lower body in this movement will recruit more of the anterior deltoid. Choose a surface lower than the wall to challenge your shoulder more, like a table or a low stair. Make sure that your core is engaged and your hips, shoulders, and feet are in one line (as in a regular push-up). You want the edge of whatever surface you’re doing this exercise on to come right underneath your chest (or boobs).3. Pike Push-ups How to Do Pike Push-Ups:This exercise is a step on your way to mastering a handstand push-up and is great for the anterior as well as the medial deltoids. Make sure that you look at your legs (not your hands) while keeping your spine neutral and the crown of your head pointing towards the ground.Ready for the next step?Elevate your legs on a step, bench, curb, chair, etc. The same rules apply: keep that neutral spine position and the crown of your head pointing towards the ground. If you’re attempting to do this for the first time alone, put a pillow under your head just in case. This is what the advanced exercise should look like:4. Prone X How to a Do Prone X:This exercise is good for the posterior (rear) delts as well as the back muscles. Be sure that your core and glutes are engaged throughout the movement. Focus on using your shoulder blades to pull the arms out to the side. And, like the Plank-To-Down Dog, this is not a race – slower and more controlled is better and safer!5. Up Downs How to Do Up Downs:Are you looking for a Plank variation that will challenge your shoulders? Try Up Downs to really feel your anterior (front) deltoid work.Place your hands directly under your shoulders. Engage the core to keep the hips square to the ground and avoid rotating the body to the sides. Pressing asymmetrically requires a lot of stability and is not something you usually do with other Plank and Push Up variations. So don’t be surprised if you feel a bit sore!6. Hindu Push Ups How to Do Hindu Push UpsThe Hindu Push Up is an advanced Push Up variation that takes shoulders through a bigger range of motion.Start the exercise by doing a Plank-To-Down Dog. Then dive deeper to the front, keeping the shoulders controlled as possible. The movement should be fluid. Tip:Keeping your elbows away from the floor throughout the movement will engage your deltoid more. If you bring your elbows down closer to the floor, you will feel your triceps work more.7. Wall Handstand Kick Up How to Do Wall Handstand Kick UpAre you an advanced athlete looking for the most challenging shoulder moves to do at home without any equipment? Then handstand variations are the way to go! Good to know:Make sure to build up shoulder strength slowly and carefully. Even just climbing up a wall with your legs and holding for a couple of seconds will heavily load your shoulders, so you need to be prepared and already have a strong base.Keep your upper body aligned (shoulders over hands) and aim to create a 90-degree angle with your hips for the Wall Handstand Kick Up. If you can, lift one leg at a time, keeping glutes engaged.Bonus Exercise for Better Shoulder PostureWall Lateral Pull-Downs  Did you know that your posture affects strength, function, and even the appearance of your shoulders?Wall Lateral Pull-Downs can help you open up your shoulders, discover a better alignment, and increase confidence. It is especially beneficial for those with forward “rounded shoulders”: This type of posture is common for those who spend a lot of time with their head forward or looking down (example: desk jobs, fine handwork, holding a baby, or even browsing your phone).Tips:If the exercise seems very easy, you are either very flexible or not doing it right!Tuck your chin. Your arms should be in contact with the wall at all points. Shoulder blades are stable and down. Make sure not to lift your lower ribs up to increase shoulder range of motion. Don’t push it. Try to relax. The range of motion will come with repetitions!Looking for more exercises you can do to build a strong body without any equipment? Download the adidas Training app and start your complete 12-week personalized bodyweight training plan today!*** More

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    Does Running Increase Testosterone?

    Many people want to know how they can naturally increase testosterone. It is commonly assumed that lifting weights and strength training is the only way to increase testosterone; however, running also increases testosterone. Keep reading to learn about the basics of testosterone and why it’s important for athletic performance.What is Testosterone?Testosterone is mostly known as the male sex hormone. However, everyone has some amount of testosterone inside them. Sex primarily dictates how much the human body produces. People with penises produce testosterone in the testes, while those with vulvas produce smaller testosterone in their ovaries. This is important to keep in mind as different physiologies will benefit from different testosterone increasing activities.Testosterone is the hormone responsible for stimulating facial and pubic hair growth, lower voice and packing on muscle. For females, too much testosterone can lead to balding. Testosterone Research and why It’s a Popular SteroidTo understand the effect of testosterone, consider the following study by a research group under the supervision of Shalender Bhasin, M.D., published in The New England Journal of Medicine:The study group consisted of 43 male subjects who engaged in recreational exercise and had previous experience with weightlifting. They were asked to follow a standardized strength training program. One group was given a specific quantity of testosterone once a week. After only ten weeks of training, the subjects’ lean body mass increased by approx. 6 kg. Their bench-press max increased by 22% and their leg-press max by 38% compared to their pre-test values. The placebo group’s lean body mass only increased by 1.9 kg. Their bench-press max increased by 11% and their leg-press by 21%. Another test group was given testosterone but did not participate in the training program. In spite of this, their lean body mass increased by 3.2 kg. Their bench- and leg-press maxes were almost identical with those of the group who did the training program but did not receive testosterone.Testosterone doping usually results in massive muscle gain. In endurance sports, testosterone is also used as a performance enhancing drug because it speeds up the body’s recovery. However, there is a major downside to doping… 7 Side Effects of Abusing Testosterone and Other SteroidsImpotenceTesticular degenerationHair lossAcneIncreased risk of heart attackArteriosclerosisBehavior changesBut, of course, there are natural ways of increasing your testosterone levels:Running Increases Testosterone NaturallyIf you think it takes herculean efforts to make your testosterone level rise, then think again. Moderate endurance training is perfect for boosting your body’s production of testosterone. Also, short, intense interval workouts have been found to significantly increase testosterone levels.Testosterone is important for retaining bone mass in males. Estrogen plays a similar role for females. Bone mass is critical for runners to avoid injury. High-volume running, such as training for a fast marathon time or an ultramarathon, can lead to stress fractures. Stress fractures are more likely to occur if bone mass is low, which is a symptom of low testosterone. Testosterone also helps increase red blood cell count. Higher red blood cell count is one of the primary determinants of endurance performance. A higher red blood cell count essentially means your heart can pump more oxygen to muscles. Obviously, this is important for running performance! This is another reason endurance athletes use testosterone as a doping agent—it gives a huge competitive advantage (but consider the risks above)!However, the opposite effect can occur in runners who are training for an ultramarathon and running extremely long distances. Extreme endurance workouts over a long period of time have been shown to lower the production of testosterone. Therefore, endurance athletes training at very high volumes should have their testosterone levels checked on a regular basis.In fact, low testosterone levels can be a sign of overtraining. Why is this? Because testosterone is responsible for reproduction. When in an overtrained state, the body essentially deprioritizes reproductive function (decreases testosterone production). If the body is not able to even take care of itself (overtraining), it cannot reasonably expect to successfully reproduce; thus, testosterone production decreases. This can also be seen in female athletes with a condition known as amenorrhea, where the body suspends the menstruation cycle (also part of human reproduction). Another reason runners and endurance athletes could be suffering from low testosterone is that the body releases the stress hormone cortisol when engaging in difficult endurance training. Cortisol is catabolic, meaning that it reduces lean muscle mass and upregulates substrate utilization (i.e., the body breaks down protein, carbohydrate, and fat more effectively at the expense of building muscle). Consider the following example:In prehistoric times, what set humans apart was their ability to outlast their game essentially. Think of following a mammoth for a very long time—it’s so big the only way to take it down is to wait until it is too tired to fight back. What is more important as a human for that event? A big, heavy-muscled body that takes lots of calories to go anywhere? Or a leaner body that needs less energy to move and utilizes its energy more efficiently? Of course, the leaner human makes more sense from a survival perspective!Bodybuilders don’t win marathons (usually).Strength Training Also Increases Testosterone NaturallyShort, intense strength workouts also cause the body to release higher amounts of testosterone. Total body training, in which you work all the major muscle groups, is perfect for this. Strength training is better suited to building muscle. One of those reasons is that strength training stimulates more testosterone production compared to running (especially long distances as noted above). It may seem obvious, but consider why strength training is more effective at building muscle. It is not only the load placed on the muscles; it is the fact that bodies (primarily the bodies of people with penises) respond to this demand by producing more testosterone. Essentially, strength training sends a stimulus to the body that it needs to recruit more muscle to pick up or push a heavy object (like doing a squat or pulling a mammoth carcass in prehistoric times). The body responds by releasing a hormone that tells the muscles to grow to meet the demand (and ideally exceed the demand for next time). This is what is happening on a molecular level inside the body.Squats release tons of testosterone! Try these squat variations to boost T levels today! Sleep is Key to Increasing Testosterone, Building Muscle and RecoveryStress is an absolute testosterone killer. The best defense against stress is plenty of good-quality sleep. This helps your body recover more quickly and it lowers your stress level.Vitamin D Stimulates Testosterone ProductionRecent studies have shown that there are similarities in the seasonal fluctuation of vitamin D and testosterone. Furthermore, there is evidence suggesting that taking supplemental vitamin D can also boost the production of testosterone in the testicular cells.Check out the best foods for runners for more running-related nutrition tips!Bottom line: There are natural ways of increasing your testosterone level. Regular exercise is one of the most effective ways of benefiting from the positive effects of testosterone. Increased testosterone not only improves your athletic performance, but it is good for your libido, too. A study conducted by the Harvard School of Public Health with 30,000 subjects found that men who exercise regularly have a 30% lower risk of impotency than those who do not exercise.Head to adidas Training and do a challenging muscle-building workout to boost your T and your body!*** More

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    Sarcopenia: How to Prevent and Treat Age-Related Muscle Loss With Nutrition and Sports

    Disclaimer:The information provided in this blog post is for guidance purposes only and does not substitute for professional medical advice. You should always consult a medical professional or healthcare provider if you’re seeking medical advice.Sarcopenia: symptoms to watch forPeople who suffer from sarcopenia experience a loss of muscle mass. This loss of strength also results in increased weakness and less mobility. This, in return, can increase the risk of injury, such as fractures from falls (e.g., broken hips, collarbones, legs, arms, wrists).Please note:If you experience one or more of these symptoms or just have the feeling that you might suffer from sarcopenia, please talk to your doctor.What might cause sarcopenia?You are not moving enough or are immobileIf you don’t use or challenge your muscles regularly, they will become lazy, leading to faster muscle mass and strength loss and increased weakness.(7)For instance, if you need bed rest after being ill or an injury, you may experience rapid muscle loss. Also, 3-4 weeks of little to no walking and physical activity can already lead to a loss of muscle mass. It’s a vicious cycle: The more your strength decreases, the more fatigued you will become, making it more challenging to return to your regular fitness routine. What happens when you stop exercising?The so-called detraining effect can result in the partial or complete reversal of all benefits you received from your regular workouts. adidas Runtastic expert Hana Medvesek explains what happens when you stop exercising.2. Your hormones are changingMen, in particular, experience a decrease in testosterone as they age.(8) But women also experience a change in hormones. Hormone changes are often accompanied by muscle loss. According to experts, the loss in muscle mass may be associated with increased body fat which comes with weakness and, therefore, sarcopenia.3. Your appetite is changing due to ageAs we age, our appetites change. We often begin to eat less. This results in loss of body fat and muscle mass as the body may not be getting proper nutrition. Therefore, make sure to eat enough throughout the day to maintain muscles.Interesting fact:The associated weight loss appears to be more detrimental to muscle mass in older people than in younger people.You are not sure how many calories you need daily? Use the total daily energy expenditure calculator:4. You are not eating a healthy and balanced diet Malnutrition is a major risk factor for the development of sarcopenia. So if you want to prevent the development of sarcopenia, it’s important to maintain healthy, balanced nutrition.(9, 10) Protein, Omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin d, and creatine play a huge role when it comes to age-related muscle loss:Protein:To stimulate muscle growth, it’s essential to focus on physical activity and maintain the proper protein intake.Studies show that if you want to prevent sarcopenia, your protein intake should be 1-1.2g/kg (body weight)/day, or 25-30 g of high-quality protein per meal.(11)Some of the best natural protein sources are:MeatFish and seafoodEggsMilk and milk productsTofu and soy productsLegumesQuinoaNutsOmega-3 fatty acids:Omega-3 fatty acids can stimulate muscle protein synthesis in older adults and, with that, may be helpful for the prevention and treatment of sarcopenia.(12) Foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids:Cold-water fishShellfishAlgaeTo increase muscle strength when doing resistance training, you can take fish-oil supplements. Studies have shown that the oil enhances the effects of strength training in elderly women.(13)Vitamin D:A good supply of vitamin D may prevent sarcopenia or its progression. Studies show that vitamin D has a benefit on muscle strength and physical performance and can prevent falls and fractures.(14, 15) Unfortunately, it’s not clear yet how much vitamin D someone should take to prevent progressive and generalized skeletal muscle disorder.Good to know:Before you buy vitamin D supplements, you should go to the doctor to get your vitamin D level checked. Your doctor can then tell you if you need to take supplements and the correct dosage.Creatine:The amino acid creatine occurs primarily in muscle cells and is produced in the liver, kidneys, and pancreas. Although your body can produce creatine itself, you can support muscle growth by taking creatine supplements or eating creatine-rich foods such as red meat, chicken, and pork. Studies have shown that creatine supplementation during resistance training in older adults can enhance muscle mass gain, strength, and functional performance.(16)5. You have health issuesResearch shows that it is more common to get sarcopenia when suffering from health problems such as chronic heart failure(17), or chronic liver disease(18). People suffering from cancer or going through cancer treatments are also more likely to get sarcopenia(19).What fuels muscle gain and how can you fight sarcopenia?Is it too late to rebuild and retain muscle mass after the age of 30? Definitely not! Experts are confident that combining a healthy diet with exercise can reduce or reverse the effects of sarcopenia.(20)Best sports and exercises to build muscle massProgressive resistance training, aerobic and cardio activities, balance and flexibility workouts: If you combine these types of exercises regularly, they can help reduce falls and co-morbidity.1. Progressive resistance training (PRT)Progressive resistance training (which includes training with exercise machines, free weights, or resistance bands) is a great tool to build muscle, prevent its loss, and increase strength.(21, 22)If you want to start training with exercise bands, here are some blog posts that you might find helpful:Do you have dumbbells or kettlebells at home? Try this resistance training with weights at home: What should you consider when you start working out regularly? Check-in with a fitness instructor to see which exercises are best for you and your condition. Ask for their guidance to make sure you’re performing the exercises correctly.The exercises or activities should challenge but not overwhelm you.As your fitness improves, try challenging yourself with more reps, sets, or increased weight. Be sure to keep improving. Give your body time to get used to the new training routine. Balance exercises To activate and strengthen your core, stabilize your muscles, and decrease the risk of injury, balance and stability exercises are key. 3. Aerobic activities (walking and swimming)If you think you now have to head to the gym and lift weights every day to prevent, treat, or reverse sarcopenia, we have good news for you: walking and swimming are also great activities to build and retain muscle!Get the best tips on walking:Get the best tips on swimming:Cardio trainingCycling, running, hiking, and more: all these exercises can increase muscle mass, too.Physical activity supports your healthDoing sports regularly improves overall health and reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease, stroke, diabetes, several cancers, depression, and falls.(23)Learn more about the exercises and how to start:Are you too old to start running?Now you know how to prevent sarcopenia through diet and exercise.Besides training with weights and resistance bands, walking, biking, cycling, and hiking, running is a great fitness activity to get your body moving and increase body strength.But maybe you ask yourself if you can be too old to start running?The good news is: seniors also can start running! Many things are possible if you really want them.Age is mainly a matter of mind and well-being. Some 30-year-olds feel like they are already too old for everything, whereas some 70-year-olds are beaming with energy as if they were 40 years younger. Whether you are 30 or 70, what really matters is taking the first step towards a healthy and active lifestyle!Healthier through more exercise:One of the few long-term studies on the topic of exercise and aging was published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine. The study showed that people who didn’t start exercising regularly until an advanced age still benefited enormously from it. 3,454 test subjects with an average age of 63.7 (± 8.9) years were studied over a period of eight years. Those people who exercised regularly during the eight years were generally in a much better state of health than inactive test participants.Basically, there is no reason that older runners can’t exercise just like their younger counterparts, provided that they keep a few basic principles in mind:5 tips for running as you age1. Give yourself plenty of restAs you age, your metabolism slows down and your body takes longer to renew and regenerate cells. Therefore, it’s very important to give your body sufficient recovery time after every training session. When you start exercising again after a long gap, you need to increase the volume and intensity of your training slowly to give your body time to adapt to the new demands.Important note:Before you start training, check in with a physician. They can help make sure you’re in the clear to do sports again.2. Improve your staminaRegular endurance training not only increases your level of fitness and overall well-being, but it also prevents cardiovascular diseases like high blood pressure and high cholesterol.A great way to start running again is to alternate between walking and running. You should generally avoid exercising to the point of exhaustion, but you can still work in some high-intensity sessions into your training. As we age, our heart rate zones change. It’s probably a good idea to check in with a physician or fitness trainer to help determine your zones as you begin training again.   3. Maintain your strength and flexibilityMuscle mass and flexibility decrease with age. But as said, weight and resistance training can help you build muscle and get stronger even at an advanced age. This is why you should incorporate strength and stability exercises into your training on a regular basis. Complex exercises with your body weight are perfect for this because they require a high degree of coordination and stabilization. You should also work some running ABC drills into your training. These exercises will help lower your risk of injury and improve your running technique and agility.4. Strengthen your bonesPushing and pulling are the two best ways to fight bone and mineral loss. Running regularly and static strength exercises are great for increasing bone mineral density (BMD). This improves the overall stability of your bones and prevents bone mass loss and osteoporosis.5. Watch your dietFood is fuel for your body. Make sure you eat a balanced and healthy diet. Find our tips on nutrition on how to preserve and gain muscle when aging above!TakeawaysBecause there is no medication to help treat sarcopenia, it’s important to change behavior to retain muscle mass:Focus on physical activity such as progressive resistance training with weights, exercise machines, or weights to build and improve strength. Focus on a healthy diet that also includes the right protein intake based on your weight and amount of exercise.*** More

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    When to Run Before or After a Workout Based on Goals

    Running before or after workouts has a drastic effect on training effectiveness. Running before a strength workout can compromise strength training gains or cause injury. On the other hand, doing a strength workout before running could cause running form to deteriorate, which can also lead to injury or compromise strength training gains.Athletes only have so much time. Sometimes that means doing cardio workouts (like running) and strength workouts (like lifting weights or bodyweight workouts) on the same day. Find out if it’s better to run before or after workouts and how to maximize same-day training benefits.The Interference EffectThe interference effect is a physiological phenomenon that states that cardio or endurance exercise (like running and cycling) interferes with the cellular adaptions elicited via strength training (namely, muscle size and overall strength).[1, 2] However, it also states that strength training does not appear to necessarily adversely affect endurance adaptations.[3]The keyword here is: necessarily. More on that later on.Running Before or After Workouts Depends on Workout GoalsAthletes engaging in concurrent strength training and running need to prioritize goals[4]. This should happen on an individual workout basis as well as overall athletic goals. For example, someone looking to build muscle mass and overall strength must concede that cardio training will–to some extent–inhibit strength gains. On the other hand, a runner is unlikely to be a very successful bodybuilder.Good to rememberAt some level maximum strength and endurance are on opposite ends of the physiological spectrum.Athletes considering strength training and cardio training need to decide which is more important for their athletic development: muscle mass or endurance. This is not to say that strength-based athletes should stop all cardio. Likewise, endurance athletes like runners should do some strength training.The careful blending of strength and endurance training is what is known as concurrent training. Strength training–such as with weights or bodyweight–is an important component of endurance performance. Sports like running and cycling do not stress all the necessary muscles in the body. For example, simply running or cycling can leave one with hip, lower back pain and upper body issues due to underdeveloped muscles. In short, most athletes should do a bit of strength training and a bit of cardio. The ideal blend of each will depend on the athlete’s goals: muscle mass or endurance.Run Before or After Workout as a Strength-Focused AthletesAthletes whose primary goal is to build muscle and overall strength should try to avoid doing cardio and strength training on the same day. If this cannot be avoided, strength-focused athletes should do their cardio workouts after strength training. This will help minimize the interference effect (i.e., the body will prioritize strength adaptations over endurance adaptations).How long should cardio workouts take place after strength workouts? The longer the better. At least six to nine hours is ideal. Spacing strength and cardio workouts as far apart as possible will help maximize strength adaptations. Again, if pure strength is the primary goal, strongly consider doing cardio and strength workouts on entirely different days. Don’t do a hard strength workout and a hard (e.g., HIIT) running workout on the same day. Alternating Lower-Body and Upper-Body Same Day WorkoutsCardio exercises like running and cycling are lower-body dominant. Performing upper-body workouts on the same day as running will have no meaningful effect on the strength workout. However, performing lower-body strength workouts shortly after a running workout will likely lead to diminished strength gains.It follows that doing lower-body strength workouts should then only take place on non-running days.Alternating workouts with upper-body strength days during running days and lower-body strength workouts on non-running days will help minimize or even eliminate the interference effect. The only caveat to this is if the athlete can handle the higher training load. This means having an optimized nutrition plan (here’s the 9 best foods for runners and the 9 best foods to build muscle), resting and being sensitive to their body’s injury or overtraining signals. Follow along with this stretching workout to kickstart the recovery process: Running Before or After Workout as a RunnerStrength training could be a key component to unlocking running performance. It may be the only way advanced runners can even achieve further progress. Beginner runners benefit from strength training by working muscles that help promote running economy and efficiency, which will ward off injury and promote total body fitness. If running (or any endurance activity, such as cycling) is a primary goal, do cardio after strength training. However, if the cardio session will be shorter and low intensity (like a simple endurance run of 30-90 minutes), doing high-repetition, low-weight or bodyweight strength training  AFTER running can help build muscular endurance and improve running stamina.Muscular endurance is different than absolute strength. Whereas pure strength is about how much force one can produce quickly (e.g., during a squat), muscular endurance is about training muscles to resist fatigue over long periods of time. One can easily see how muscular endurance is beneficial to runners: running longer distances like half-marathons, marathons and even ultramarathons. Muscular endurance will allow runners to retain their running form longer, which means not only maintaining running economy for longer but also decreasing the risk of running-related injuries.Sound worth it? Here’s how to do it:Do an easy run. Try to avoid running hills. Don’t do intervals. Just do a basic endurance-paced run anywhere from 20 to 90 minutes. It should feel almost boring.After the run and while the body is still warmed up, do a strength training session that focuses on high repetitions and low (if any) weight. Repetition ranges should be 20 to 30 per set. Cool down with light jogging.Combining running and strength training back to back is a serious session. Make sure to fuel properly before, during and after (like with a hot cocoa recovery drink). Don’t finish the workout starving. The recovery demands from this type of training are huge–but so are the benefits. Don’t do these big sessions every day–twice a week is plenty and should likely be followed by a full recovery day or an easy run (for advanced athletes).Running Before or After a Workout if the goal is to Lose WeightIt is often recommended to do strength training before running to empty carbohydrate stores. The idea is to force the body to get its energy primarily from fat rather than carbs during the run. However, the problem with this strategy is that it is very difficult to finish a long-distance run on empty carbohydrate stores. While it is true that a much higher percentage of fat is burned for energy, the calorie burn, on the other hand, is relatively low because of the low intensity or low duration of the workout. On top of that, perceived exertion of the workout will be much greater when continuing to workout with depleted glycogen stores. This can cause athletes to prematurely quit the workout; therefore, reducing maximal calorie expenditure. Additionally, athletes who choose to work out this way will finish workouts extremely hungry. This can lead athletes to massively overeat after a very tough workout, which will likely result in weight gain and developing unhealthy nutrition habits.If weight loss is a goal, a negative energy balance is key: If one burns more calories than they consume, they will lose weight. In the end, what matters is how many calories are burned in total through the workout. Spread your workouts out over several days. That way one can train at a high intensity and burn a lot of calories, and at the same time give the body the time it needs to recover properly before the next workout.Running Before or After a Workout if the Goal is to Improve Overall FitnessIn this case, basically do cardio and strength training in whichever order. Still define a specific training goal for each session. Just be careful about doing too much and getting injured. Start slow, add a little bit of training each week, take a day off if aches and pains start to creep up. Once the gains stop coming, consider reexamining training structure to focus on more specific goals. Try this workout after a run for a great cardio and strength session This workout focuses on neglected leg muscles and glute strength (i.e., a firmer butt). It’ll also help improve posture. Learn and do the following movements: Curtsy lunge, kneel & stand, side lunges, single-leg deadlift and wall sits.In general, avoid doing two workouts back-to-back. Spacing running and strength workouts far apart will allow the body sufficient time to adapt and recover before the next session. If running before or after a workout is the only option, follow the training schedule recommendations above to elicit maximal adaptations. If all of that is too complicated and the goal is to just get fit, do whatever is most convenient.Check out the following video for a detailed explanation of setting up a your own training schedule for best results: *** More

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    11 Muscle Building Tips for Huge Gains

    These 11 muscle building tips can help beginner athletes get started with their muscle building journey. These muscle growth methods can also enable advanced athletes whose muscle growth has plateaued. Muscle building is a complex physiological process that takes significant time and commitment. At the same time, there is a lot of wrong information about building muscle best. Cut through the noise with these 11 muscle building tips to start building bigger muscles today!SummaryMuscle building tips from workout structure (like sets and reps) to how much protein to include in a muscle building diet. Clever ways to build muscle and reduce total workout time with muscle building tips on supersets and pushing to failure. Learn how to increase lean muscle mass ratio.Muscle Building Tip 1: How much weight is best for building muscle?Numerous studies have shown that a weight you can lift a maximum of 8-12 times produces the most significant gains in muscle size[1, 2]. Depending on the exercise and your fitness level, this is equivalent to 60-80% of your one-rep max (the maximum amount of weight you can lift in a single repetition).Many people mistakenly think that the only way to trigger muscle growth is by lifting heavy weights in a gym.You can build bigger butt muscles, a strong core, a massive chest and even a super strong back with bodyweight exercises (or resistance band exercises) you can do at home or wherever you are!Heavy weights are only necessary if you want to have a bodybuilder’s physique. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean having the type of strength athletes need to compete, which translates to everyday health and fitness.Fact:Muscle growth is mainly due to an increase in the size and not the number of muscle fibers.Muscle Building Tip 2: How many sets per exercise are right for you? Single vs. multiple set trainingA set is the number of times you complete a certain movement (reps) and its recovery period. For example, 3×8 push-ups would be 3 sets of 8 push-ups each. The rest interval is usually 1-3 minutes between sets (more on that below).The optimal number of sets is a hot topic in the strength training world.There are big differences here depending on your fitness level.In the first weeks, novices and beginners show the same gains with single set training as they do with multiple set training.More advanced athletes achieve significantly better results with multiple set training because the training stimulus with single set training is too low to stress the muscles to adapt. Therefore, multiple set training is recommended in this case.Beginners should stick to two or three sets, whereas more advanced strength trainers can do 3-5 or more sets.Good to knowPerform as many reps and sets as you can before your form or technique fails. Continuing to push even though your form has collapsed can lead to injury. Always be in control of your movements and respect the limits of your body and fitness level. One of the biggest challenges is knowing when enough is enough, and this comes with many years (decades) of practice. Skip straight to Muscle Building Tip 7 to learn more about pushing to failure.Muscle Building Tip 3: Reps Per SetHow many repetitions (reps) per set depends on the specific exercise and fitness goals. For example, it would be reasonable to do 30-60 jumping jacks; however, that would be far too many push-ups for most people.Stick to a rep range of 6-12 repetitions of the same exercise if the focus is on building muscle. Once that many reps of an exercise is possible with good form, go all the way to 20 reps for exercises like push-ups, rows, squats, etc. Once 20 reps with good technique are doable, add another set and drop the reps back down to 6-8 reps per set. Add more reps again once you can complete all sets with good form.Muscle Building Tip 4: Rest Between SetsRest between 90 seconds and 3 minutes between individual sets.Add an aerobic component to the workout or if short on time by doing circuit training or supersets[3]. Circuit training means skipping the recovery intervals and going straight into the next exercise. This method of training works the cardiovascular system more than strength training alone.On the other hand, basic supersets involve doing exercises that oppose the same muscle or muscle group—for example, doing a set of push-ups and then going straight into a set of supermans. The two exercises oppose the same muscle group (think pushing versus pulling movements). This means skipping the recovery interval while still pushing hard in each exercise. Check out the below videos to see how push-ups and supermans work opposing muscle groups (known as an antagonist superset):  Be careful with supersets because they can leave you with DOMS for days because they work muscles to the limit! Make sure you understand the benefits of super-compensation and the difference between overtraining.Important:Make sure you perform all the exercises at a steady pace and with proper form.Muscle Building Tip 5: How many times a week for you do strength training?Soreness related to strength training is known as Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS). It is vital to return or begin strength training very conservatively. Aim for the minimum amount of reps and sets if one hasn’t strength trained in a while (or ever). DOMS may occur one to two days after the initial strength training session. Even if soreness persists, another strength training session two to three days later can help alleviate DOMS and is a good idea for experienced athletes. Athletes who have never strength trained before should do one day of strength training their first week, then try adding a day the next week and see how their body reacts.RememberBuilding muscle is a long-term process. Rushing muscle building will lead to injury eventually, which will cause serious setbacks. Trust in the process, go slow and be patient. Always leave one or two reps “on the table.” When in doubt, leave it out.For beginners, two strength sessions a week is enough. An all-around program that works all the major muscle groups is best. These are often called “fully-body workouts.” Some examples of full-body workouts in adidas Training are: Full Body with Weights (use dumbbells or water bottles as weights), 8-Minute Fully Body Workout, 10-Minute Tabata HIIT, and so many more! More advanced strength trainers can work out three to four times per week.Split training is a good way to make sure there is enough time for muscle recovery. Each major muscle group will work twice a week if you do a two-body-part split four days a week. The most common types of split training are dividing your workout into upper and lower body or push and pull exercises.Advanced athletes can consider building their workouts with the adidas Training Workout Creator. This feature enables athletes to choose specific muscle groups, difficulty, workout duration and equipment. A common way to use this feature to split workouts would be to target legs and lower body one day of the week, then target arms and upper body the next day, then go back to lower body. This type of training is only for advanced athletes because it adds significant training stress, which is needed to promote further muscle growth due to the principle of progressive overload[4].Muscle Building Tip 6: How many weeks to see visible results?When starting strength training, strength increases, but your muscles won’t look any bigger.This is because the strength gains at the beginning are due to improved intra- and intermuscular coordination (improved activation and interaction between muscles). Training blocks should last between eight and twelve weeks, including a recovery week every third or fourth week depending on experience level and injury propensity.Muscle growth requires continuous additional training stimulus. Muscle Building Tip 7: Push Muscles to Failure Pushing to failure sounds dangerous (and it can be). Pushing muscles to failure is also a great way to induce muscle growth. Pushing to failure means one could not complete another rep with good technique. If one completes that final rep with poor technique, they have pushed past failure, which can quickly lead to injury at worst and is counterproductive at best.An excellent way to push to failure for bodyweight exercises is simply doing as many reps of an exercise until technique suffers. For example, do as many push-ups as possible and stop when hips and/or shoulders sag towards the ground. Rest for a minute, then do another set and note down how many reps are possible. Try to do more reps and/or sets in the next workout to build muscle. The key to this tip is to push just until it is almost too much and then stop. It’s never productive to get injured, so be very careful. Beginner athletes should focus on developing perfect technique before attempting this training tip.For example, here are 9 of the most common mistakes for the most common exercises to watch out for when pushing muscles to failure.Muscle Building Tip 8: Cut Cardio (If Muscle Building is the Only Goal)Cardio or aerobic exercise can impact the body’s ability to build muscle. If big muscles are a primary goal, cutting cardio is required. However, beginner athletes will likely realize significant gains fast if they do strength training and cardio workouts. Being able to climb stairs without getting winded is good for overall health! Plus, muscle growth will happen in a functionally natural way. For example, including running workouts will develop important leg muscles and work the cardiovascular system.The bottom lineUnless bodybuilding is a goal or muscle growth has plateaued, include cardio workouts in training.Muscle Building Tip 9: Muscle Building NutritionBuilding muscle requires fueling muscle growth. Cutting calories to lose weight is counterintuitive to building muscle. Additionally, calorie needs will increase as muscle mass increases.Protein Intake for Muscle BuildingProtein is essential for muscle building. Adequate protein intake doesn’t mean cutting out the other macronutrients of carbs and fat. It also doesn’t mean consuming more than 25g of protein an hour (the maximal protein absorption rate for humans). Supplements that have hundreds of grams of protein are a waste of money. Use this protein calculator to quickly and easily figure out how much protein is needed to build muscle. Carb Intake for Muscle BuildingMany people falsely believe that cutting carbs is an excellent way to promote muscle growth. The body prioritizes carbs as its primary fuel source during very intense exercise (like strength training or sprinting through the physiological process known as glycolysis). If the body doesn’t have enough carbs to fuel the exercise, it breaks down protein in muscles and converts protein into glucose to cover the energy expenditure of the training. This has the negative effect of breaking down the very muscles being built!Eat enough carbs to cover the energy cost of the exercise. Find that out using this carb intake calculator.The bottom lineInstead, eat a balanced diet of protein, carbs and fat. Get protein from the diet, not supplements.Muscle Building Tip 10: Lose Weight and Build Lean Muscle MassIt is possible to use strength training to increase the ratio of lean muscle mass while losing weight [5]. Muscle mass may not increase (and may even decrease) during weight loss. However, increasing protein intake and maintaining strength training while cutting carbs and fat can help one maintain or increase their ratio of lean muscle mass. Think of it like this: if total bodyweight drops but muscle mass stays the same, the ratio of muscle to body weight has increased despite muscles not growing. In other words, lean muscle mass has increased.Muscle Building Tip 11: The Role of RestMuscle doesn’t get built during workouts: they break down. Muscle grows during rest because rest allows the body to repair broken muscle tissue stronger than before. Get eight to nine hours of sleep every night, especially during heavy training. Napping is also critical for serious muscle growth.ConclusionThe most important thing for effectively building muscle (as well as for every training goal in general) is that you continue to work out regularly.If you stay consistent, all the hard work will pay off and you are guaranteed to see visible results.Are you ready to get in shape and build strength? Get the adidas Training app and join a challenge!*** More