The Best Health and Fitness Articles of the Week #100 – Motivational Tips for Working Out, Homemade Pain Relief Cream and Neck Exercises for Desk Jockies

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Here’s a recap of the best health and fitness articles I’ve read over the past week.


5 Simple Tricks to Keep Motivated When You Work Out Alone

If you’re having trouble staying motivated for your workout routine, consider trying some of the tips mentioned here. I actually do most of the tips here, even the one about joining the Nerd Fitness community, except I don’t do the one about giving myself rewards. Maybe I should try that too.



10 Things First-Time Marathoners Should Know

It’s getting closer to marathon season so I bet a lot of you are getting excited. If you’ve never run a marathon before, there are some basic tips here you should probably know. I doubt I’ll ever run a marathon myself. I feel like I’d go crazy out of boredom. Endurance cardio just isn’t my thing. Unless “Zombies, Run” can come up with a 12+ hour mission. That would be awesome!



21 Ways To Hack Your Kitchen

I had three favorite tips from this article; going to the salad bar at the store to pick up pre-cut veggies for stir-fry, throwing salt in ice water to make it colder faster in order cool beer quickly, and boiling water before turning it into ice cubes to prevent cloudiness in your drinks. There are 18 other really cool tips here too.



Ask Well: Coaxing Parents to Take Better Care of Themselves

I can’t say that I got a lot of helpful info out of this one but I really liked the tip on creating a mix of songs from when your parents were 12-17 years old. The music I grew up with always gets me motivated in the gym, so I’m sure that could help your parents get pumped too.



Make Your Own Homemade Pain Relieving Cream

For some strange reason I’ve never tried a pain relieving cream before. Do they work? Would you use it on sore muscles? If you do use a pain relief cream and you want the comfort of knowing exactly what’s in it, consider making your own. There are two recipes here, one difficult and one super-easy. I would go with the super-easy one 😉



Seven Reasons Most Hotel Gyms Fail

I never travel and I’ve only stayed in a hotel once in my life so I have no experience with hotel gyms, but based on this article, it sounds like there are some real dumps out there.



Heavy backpacks may damage nerves, muscles and skeleton, study suggests

I remember the pain that I would get in my back and shoulders lugging around my backpack when I was in college. A backpack gets pretty damn heavy when you have to carry around several text books, a laptop computer, notebooks and whatever else students need. I also had the joys of experiencing this pain again this past summer when my fiance packed way more than what we needed when we went hiking.



Healthy Blueberry Syrup

I make pancakes every weekend and I hate to admit on this blog that I use a crappy sugar-filled store bought syrup. I’ve been thinking more about finding healthier options and I think I’ve found one. This sounds tasty and it looks really easy to make.



How to Properly Warm Up Before You Work Out

I think the proper warm-up routine for you depends entirely on the type of workout you’re doing, and if you’re doing a HIIT workout or something cardio-based, this is probably a good one to start with.



4 Weeks To A Bigger Chest

Programs like this are always fun and with a name like that, it’s certainly enticing, isn’t it? If you’re a beginner to lifting, a program like this is useless, but if you’re already in great shape and need to do some spot work on your chest, give this one a try.



6 Biggest Exercise Mistakes Nearly Everyone Makes

Yup, everyone makes these mistakes, and hopefully they learn to realize that they aren’t doing their body any good by educating themselves. I like to think that most people learn over time through experience and reading educational materials. That’s what I like to think. I have no idea if it’s true.



The No-BS 7 Step Beginner’s Guide To Building Muscle

Here’s an excellent guide for anyone who wants to get started on building muscle by lifting heavy weights. There are some good tips on getting motivated, determining caloric needs and there’s a great routine too.



Neck Exercises for Desk Workers

I work at a computer all day and I suffer from many neck aches and pains. I’m definitely going to start doing these exercises. I already know a few of these from doing P90X 😉

The Best Health and Fitness Articles of the Week #99 – Hangover Cures, a 5 minutes Workout and Proper Gym Etiquette

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Best Natural Hangover Cures?

Before I got into health and fitness, I was a big partier. I don’t party anymore, but these days I have a weakness for craft beer. I guess what I’m saying is, I’m no stranger to hangovers, lol. Anyway, I learned a lot of interesting things from this post. Did you know that people with heart problems are more likely to suffer a heart attack during a hangover? This article discusses the science behind hangovers and then goes into natural hangover cures and how and why those cures work.



A 5 Minute Workout At Home For Busy People

I’ve been sick all week and craving a workout but I’ve held off in order to let my body rid itself of this sickness. But then I came across this workout and I really wanted to try it. It was a good workout but it’s only 5 minutes so I don’t think it was too detrimental to my cold.



The DH Guide to Gym Etiquette

My gym is in my house so I don’t have to deal with these things anymore, but I remember how pissed off I would get when people would do all of these things. One of my biggest pet peeves was when someone would sit on a machine doing nothing during 10 minute rests between sets.



Quick Tip: Always Freeze Fresh Ginger

Cool tip. I don’t use ginger all too often, so I end up usually tossing about an inch of old ginger away once it starts to go bad. I should probably just start freezing it.

The Best Health and Fitness Articles of the Week #98 – The Best Juice Ever, Body Sensors in Temporary Tattoos, and Muscle Activation in Deadlifts

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Here’s a recap of the best health and fitness articles I’ve read over the past week.



Morning Fruit Juice – The Proof Is In The Juice

Israel Torres is well-known in the “Juicing” sub-category over at Reddit. I recently read a thread over there about someone who juiced cilantro for their first juice and they were immediately put off by it. It’s funny, because I did the same thing. It took me nearly a year to finally start eating cilantro again, ha! Anyway, in that thread, Israel Torres mentions that this morning fruit juice is his absolute favorite juice of all time. Considering that he’s done four 60-day juice fasts, that’s really saying something about this juice. I can’t wait to try it.



Meeting Yoda: An Interview with Tim Ferriss

I love listening to interviews with Tim Ferriss because he always has so much great advice. Most of the interview is about his new book, The Four Hour Chef, which I just recently purchased, but have not read yet. It’s not a cook book like you might think, but it’s a book on accelerated learning, while using learning how to cook as an example.



Temporary Tattoo Attaches Health Sensor to Your Body

What if you could monitor your hydration, sodium, potassium and magnesium levels simply by wearing a temporary tattoo? Well, that could soon be a reality because Researchers at University of Toronto Scarborough created a temporary sensor tattoo that right now can monitor for dehydration and they’re planning to create tattoos made of other materials that detect the other things I mentioned.



ABC: Is it Dangerous to “Squeeze the Glutes” During Hip Extension Exercises?

If you’re feeling pain in your hip or lower back when performing hip thrusts, you might not be squeezing your glutes enough. Squeezing your glutes protects the spine and the hips, so do it!



Contreras Files V: 15 More Practical Tips

Lots of great tips here, all based on studies and real experience. It’s all random, but I’m sure you’ll learn at least one new thing from this post.



Tim Ferriss vs. Leo Babauta on Goals on Vimeo

I really like Leo Babuata’s thoughts on how you shouldn’t always get hung up on outcome driven goals and should enjoy the success you have during the process of doing whatever it is want to do. Tim Ferriss also talks about how he gives himself an allowance of 40% “breakage” in not completing his goals, although he sets his goals very high in order to make sure he still gets something out of it.



How do you sterilize your juicer?

If you own a juicer, you’ve probably thought about this too. I certainly have. The stains on my juicer don’t really bother me that much and I feel like my equipment is clean enough, but if you don’t have the same feelings, there are some good tips on here on some things you can try. Some examples are using olive oil and a cloth, powdered brewery wash or even Oxyclean.



Muscle activation in conventional and sumo deadlifts

You can read the whole post for really technical info pulled out of the study, or you can skip to the end and get the key points. I read the whole thing, but I have to be honest, I didn’t understand much of it 😉 In the end, it seems that both sumo and regular deadlifts perform similar roles and both are good to include in a training program.

The Best Health and Fitness Articles of the Week #97 – 40+ Best Bodyweight Exercises, How to Balance Hormones and The Science Behind Exercise

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Here’s a recap of the best health and fitness articles I’ve read over the past week.



44 Best Bodyweight Exercises Ever! (High Def) – YouTube

I can do some of these, but most of these exercises require more strength than I’ll every possess, like the triple clap pushups, one arm hanging leg lifts or the archer pull ups. My favorite from this video is the ab crunch shredder dips.



High fructose corn syrup–another overhyped study

Here’s an excellent example of why you should review the research yourself before taking the popular opinion of the internet and media sources. Whether or not HFCS is any worse for you than other sweeteners, everyone just needs to cut back on sweeteners of all kinds.



How To Balance Your Hormones

Christopher Walker had a brain tumor that pressed against his pituitary gland that prevented production of testosterone, resulting in hormone imbalances and health issues. His case is extreme, but that doesn’t mean that the rest of us aren’t suffering some sort of hormonal imbalance as well. Check out this article for some great advice on getting your hormones in check.



Do Not Kip your Pull Ups before reading this

Another article against the kipping pull up exercise. If you really want to do kipping pull ups, at least make sure you have the strength to do a good number of slow, proper-form pull ups first. Check out the funny video at the end of the article about “kipping everything.” Now that was funny!



No Grains Equals No Migraines

I wouldn’t say that I feel crappy, but I do believe I could feel even better, especially after reading success stories like this. If it were easier to remove grains in a vegan diet I would definitely love to try it, but that doesn’t leave a whole lot left for me to eat. It’s something I’m still working on figuring out though.



How Do I Know if I Have a Glute Imbalance?

This article and the accompanying link to the article on how to fix glute imbalances is awesome! I haven’t noticed a glute imbalance on myself but who knows, it might be there. I’m definitely going to start incorporating glute exercises into my regular routine.



Content marketing tips from the world of cycling

How could I not mention an article that discusses my two favorite things – marketing and cycling? I always see articles like this comparing some niche topic to marketing, for example I regularly see comparisons on Star Wars, Harry Potter and Monty Python. I usually skip those because I have no interest in those topics, but cycling is finally one that fits me and I had a lot of fun reading it.



Tim Ferriss: How to Make the Perfect Cup of Coffee

As a newbie in the world of coffee geekery, I really enjoyed the tips in this post. Here’s a quick summary – buy high quality beans and use within a month of the roast date, grind in single proportions with a burr grinder, and use 2 grams of coffee per 30 ml/g of water (roughly 1 oz of water). I’ve been wanting an Aeropress and I just remembered that I got some Amazon gift cards for Christmas, so it looks like I’ll have this fun coffee gadget soon!



The Best PB & J Protein Shake Recipe You’ll Ever Try

When I saw the title of this article I expected to see a recipe for a really unhealthy shake, but to my pleasure, it’s actually all natural healthy ingredients! I’ve already made it and it’s awesome. It really tastes like PB&J.



The Truth About Exercise

This is a documentary that follows Michael Mosley, a medical researcher and reporter for the BBC, as he learns that most people’s knowledge of health, including his own knowledge, is outdated and sometimes wrong. This was an awesome documentary. I saw some of this stuff when I went to the 2012 Fitness and Health Bloggers Conference at the The Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora, CO and I was in awe. You need to have a U.K. IP address to access this documentary, but you can follow these tips provided by Lifehacker to get around that. Now to try to find some “fidget pants.”