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A 20-Minute Yoga Sequence For a Tighter Backside

A 20-Minute Yoga Sequence For a Tighter Backside

Downward-Dog

    1. Downward Dog

    • Begin on your hands and knees. Your wrists should be underneath your shoulders, and your knees should be underneath your hips.
    • Inhale as you tuck your toes under your heels. Then exhale to lift your hips, coming into an upside-down “V” shape called Downward Facing Dog.
    • Spread your fingers wide, and create a straight line between your middle fingers and elbows. Work on straightening your legs and lowering your heels toward the ground. Relax your head between your arms, and direct your gaze through your legs or up toward your belly button. Hold for five breaths.

    Three-Legged-Down-Dog

      2. Three-Legged Downward Dog

      • From Downward Facing Dog, step both feet together so your big toes are touching.
      • Shift your weight onto your hands and your left foot equally, and raise your right leg into the air. Try to keep your shoulders parallel with the ground, and gaze at your left thigh or up toward your belly to help you stay balanced.
      • Stay here for five breaths, then lower your right leg down. Perform Three-Legged Downward Dog on the other side.

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      Warrior-1

        3. Warrior 1

        • From Three-Legged Dog, come back down to Downward Facing Dog.
        • Step your right foot forward between your hands. Turn your left heel in, press into your feet, and lift your torso up.
        • Lift your arms up, and press your palms together. Draw your shoulder blades down toward your hips, and gaze up at your hands.
        • Stay here for five breaths. Then come back to Downward Dog, and move through Warrior 1 with your left foot forward.

        Warrior-3

          4. Warrior 3

          • From Warrior 1 with your left knee forward, lower your torso and lift your right leg, bringing your body parallel with the ground.
          • Extend your hands out in front of you, pressing your palms together firmly. If it bothers your shoulders to press your hands together, separate your arms so they’re shoulder-width apart. If extending your arms creates pain or pressure in your lower back, rest your hands on your hips.
          • Engage your abs, holding this position for five deep breaths. Then lower your left leg, returning to Warrior 1. Release your hands to the mat, and come into Downward Dog.
          • Then move through Warrior 3 with the other leg, move through Warrior 1, and come back to Downward Dog.

          Fierce

            5. Fierce

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            • After Downward Facing Dog, jump or step toward the top of your mat. Slowly roll up, and stand with your feet together in Mountain Pose. Bend your knees and lower your hips as you raise your arms overhead.
            • Focus on sitting back onto your heels. Tuck your tailbone in, and engage your abs, keeping your spine straight. Relax the shoulders as you gaze up toward the ceiling. Stay like this for five breaths, and then stand up into Mountain Pose.

            8bf33b4746417958_Mountain-Pose.xxxlarge_2x

              6. Mountain Pose

              • Before you begin moving, create your intention. Bring your awareness inward to your breath and focus your energy on a person, an aspiration, a dream, a hope, a purpose, or something you wish to change in the world or in your life.
              • Try to let go of any thoughts about your day: what you forgot to do, who you need to call, or a disagreement you may have had, then connect with your body in the present moment. After all this is what yoga is all about.

              Goddess

                7. Goddness

                • From Mountain Pose, step open to the right, opening your legs about three feet apart. Turn your heels in.
                • Bend your knees until your thighs are parallel to the ground. Your knees should be directly over your ankles, so adjust your feet if you need to. Lift your arms up, bending your elbows so they are at 90-degree angles, and open your palms away from you.
                • Hold here for five deep breaths.

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                Wide-Squat

                  8. Wide Squat

                  • Step in your feet so they’re slightly wider than your hips. Bend your knees, and lower your hips toward the ground.
                  • Bring your palms together at your heart center, and firmly press your elbows against the inside of your knees. This will help to open your hips even farther. Shift weight onto your heels, and lengthen the crown of your head toward the ceiling.
                  • Hold the pose for five deep breaths.

                  Locust

                    9. Locust Pose

                    • From Wide Squat, place your hands at the top of your mat and step back into plank. Slowly lower to the ground, and lie flat on your belly with your legs together. Place your arms by your sides so your palms are facing up.
                    • As you inhale, lift your legs, head, and upper body off the floor. Your hands remain on the floor for support. As you breathe, extend the crown of your head away from your toes, lengthening as much as you can through your spine.
                    • Stay for five breaths, and then release back to the mat.

                    Intense-East

                      10. Intense East

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                      • From Locust Pose, roll over to lie flat on your back. Sit your bottom on the floor with your legs extended straight out in front of you. Place your palms behind your hips about six to eight inches away, with your fingers pointing toward your toes.
                      • As you inhale, press into your hands and feet firmly, lifting your hips into the air. Raise them as high as you can so your spine is in a long line. Slowly release your head back, looking behind you and opening through your throat.
                      • Stay here for five deep breaths, then lower your hips to the floor.

                      Bridge

                        11. Bridge

                        • From Intense East, lie flat on your back with your arms along the sides of your body with your palms facing down. Bend your knees, placing your heels as close as you can to your bum.
                        • With your palms and feet pressing firmly into the ground, lift your hips up. Keep your palms on the mat, or clasp your hands together below your pelvis, extending through your arms. Or you can also bend your elbows and rest your hands on your lower back. If your feet are close enough, you can also hold your ankles.
                        • Stay here for five deep breaths, lifting your hips up as high as you can.

                        Savasana

                          12. Savasana

                          • After you’ve completed Bridge Pose, lie on your back and close your eyes. In order to relax and open your body fully, extend your arms a few inches away from the body, with the palms facing up. Put about 15 to 20 inches between your heels, allowing your feet to fall open with the toes pointing out. Actively shrug your shoulder blades down toward your hips. Lengthen through the spine as much as possible, relaxing your lower back toward the floor.
                          • After you’ve found a comfortable position, stay here for as long as you want, around 10 minutes or more, if your schedule allows for it. If you’re short on time, remain in Savasana at least until your heart rate slows down and your breath returns to its natural soothing rhythm.
                           
                          yoga a6
                            Reference: popsugar.com

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                            Last Updated on September 4, 2020

                            How to Lose Fat and Gain Muscle to See Results Fast

                            How to Lose Fat and Gain Muscle to See Results Fast

                            There’s a lot of confusion, mystery, and desperation around how to lose fat and gain muscle. We applaud body transformation pictures we see on Instagram, Facebook, and magazine covers but are never able to replicate the results ourselves.

                            Well, that mystery is over because I will tell you exactly how to achieve those results in this article.

                            The journey to getting there is straightforward but not easy. Most people give up too early in the game, when they stop making visible progress.

                            Keep reading to learn how to utilize your metabolism and the laws of muscle building to lose fat and gain muscle fast.

                            Skyrocket Your Metabolism to Lose Fat

                            Learning how to lose fat and gain muscle at the same time is one of the biggest misunderstandings of body transformations because they are opposite metabolic processes.

                            To lose fat, you must have calorie deficits each day, and to gain muscle, you must be in a caloric surplus, but you cannot do both at the same time.

                            When you look at pictures, it looks like it can be done simultaneously, but what is actually happening is a change in fat and muscle percentages.

                            If your weight stays the same through your journey, and you lose body fat, your percent of lean muscle mass automatically goes up by default. You didn’t gain any muscle, but your fat and muscle ratio percentages have shifted.

                            Calculating Your Calories to Lose Fat

                            There are many good calorie calculators out there that will give you an estimate on how much to eat to start losing fat for weight loss. You usually need to cut about 10 to 15% of your TDEE (total daily energy expenditure) calories to start the process.

                            You can find a visual explanation of TDEE below[1]:

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                            Use TDEE to learn how to lose fat and gain muscle.

                              Remember that the calculators are just an estimate. It’s up to you to track your measurements and to adjust your caloric intake to ensure you’re getting the results you’re looking for.

                              Metabolism calculators take into account four different ways your body burns calories to come up with your TDEE, or how many calories you burn in a day:

                              • Resting metabolic rate
                              • Thermic effect of food
                              • Thermic effect of activity
                              • Non-exercise activity thermogenesis

                              Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR)

                              This is your baseline metabolism at rest, or how many calories your body needs to survive if you spent the entire day lying in bed awake.

                              RMR accounts for about 60 to 75% of your total daily energy expenditure. Your RMR is mostly determined by how much you weigh.

                              A heavier person has a higher RMR than a lighter person, even if the lighter person has a higher lean muscle mass, because the metabolism of muscle only contributes to about 20% of your total RMR energy expenditure[2].

                              Thermic Effect of Food (TEF)

                              You’ve heard that to lose weight and gain muscle, you should be eating lots of protein. This is true for a number of reasons:

                              • Lowers your intake of other types of foods, like processed carbs.
                              • Increases satiety, so you continue to feel fuller, longer.
                              • The building blocks for your muscles are found in protein.

                              About 30% of the calories from protein intake are burned off during the digestion process, which includes absorption and waste removal of it. Eating more protein as opposed to other macros increases the amount of calories burned during digestion. That’s why you feel fuller with a higher protein diet.

                              Thermic Effect of Activity (TEA)

                              The calories burned in TEA are relatively minor in your entire TDEE equation. TEA is any calories burned during official exercise, like going to the gym, doing an aerobics class, or going for a run. It covers any exercise you do outside of your normal activities.

                              Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT)

                              The calories burned in NEAT is the big game changer for most people and can vary up to 2000 calories burned per day between people with identical RMRs[3].

                              For the majority of us, when we’re done with our workouts for the day, we don’t do much else for movement. We spend about an hour in the gym, and instead of using the other 15 hours awake as an opportunity to move and burn more calories, we spend it sitting.

                              This is how there can be such a big difference between the amount of calories burned between two people who have the same RMR.

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                              Outside of your gym workout, any additional body movements count towards burning additional calories. The quickest way to add this to your day is to make everything you do as inconvenient for yourself as possible.

                              Examples of inconvenient activities that count towards NEAT include:

                              • Taking the stairs versus the elevator
                              • Parking farther away
                              • Getting up to change the TV channel versus using the remote
                              • Pacing and walking while on a phone call instead of sitting down

                              Increasing your NEAT goes a long way to helping your burn calories faster, leading to quicker fat loss. For more ideas on how to make life a little more inconvenient to up your activity level, check out this article.

                              The Laws of Building Muscle

                              Congrats on reaching the stage where you want to tone and get some definition! Learning how to lose fat and gain muscle isn’t an easy process, so if you’ve taken it on, that’s a huge step.

                              To build muscle, first you want to increase your calorie intake.

                              Based on your TDEE, you want to add about 10% more calories as a starting point. This is enough calories to build muscle, and any excess can lead to fat storage if you’re not training hard enough or aren’t active enough.

                              Again, be sure to track your measurements and adjust your calories if necessary.

                              Second, follow a muscle-building program that you can sustain for at least 3 to 6 months.

                              Consistency is key with building muscles because they need to be stimulated and broken down on a regular basis in order to build back up. You want to strength train at least twice a week for at least an hour each time to start getting results.

                              Of course, more often is better but requires better planning and a more complicated body parts training plan. So, start simple if you’re a novice. It’s not necessary to train 6 times a week unless you’re training for a competition.

                              Progressive Overload

                              Muscle needs to be challenged in order to grow. You need to gradually and consistently increase the amount of load and volume you are lifting.

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                              Load means the amount of weight you’re lifting during weight training. Up to a certain point, it becomes unrealistic to keep adding pounds to each exercise every week, at which point you need to switch exercises and work on your weaker points to break that plateau.

                              However, the goal with load is to keep increasing the amount of weight you lift.

                              Increasing the volume you do is another method to progressive overload. Volume means the total number of reps for that specific exercise. If you’re doing 3 sets of 12 reps, it means you’ve done a total of 36 reps.

                              But increasing volume doesn’t mean doing super high reps of 20+ unless you’re training your muscle for endurance versus strength.

                              You want to use a challenging weight and be able to lift more of it each week through increased reps and sets.

                              Here is a visual explanation of how you can engage in progressive overload[4]:

                              PROGRESSIVE OVERLOAD FOR MUSCLE MASS by @jmaxfitness - Visit the link in my bio to claim your free 1-week muscle bu… | Muscle, Gain muscle, Weight training workouts

                                Training Intensity

                                Paying attention to what you’re doing is required if you want to lose fat and build muscle because you want to build and improve the mind-muscle connection to optimize growth.

                                A healthy mind-body connection means you’re able to better feel your muscles working during each lift.

                                You know you’ve picked the right weight when the last 2 to 3 reps of your intended rep range is challenging. On occasion, you want to push past the burn and muscle fatigue for the last reps.

                                This little bit of pushing past the discomfort is the difference between an average body and a body with more definition. Lifting almost to failure increases muscle recruitment, metabolic stress, and anabolic recruitment to grow muscles.

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                                Proper Recovery

                                This is the most overlooked aspect of building muscles. We focus too much on pre/post workout meals, macro tweaking, and supplements, forgetting that we already have the ultimate tool for recovery: our own body.

                                For best recovery practices, allow at least a day, but no more than 3 days of rest between workouts that stress the same muscle group. Overtraining results in diminished exercise capacity, possible injury, and illness.

                                Remember, muscles are broken down in the gym and built outside of it during recovery.

                                Get 7 to 8 hours of sleep, and be mindful of your stress levels to optimize recovery time. A lack of sleep and excess stress will spike cortisol levels, leading to hunger cravings, decrease regulation of burning fat, and cause faster aging.

                                You can learn how to lower your stress levels fast here.

                                Stop Program Hopping

                                Every day, there is new workout, new exercise, new program on a website, in a magazine, or in your social media feed. No wonder we’re tempted to try a little bit of everything!

                                Frequent program hopping stops you from getting any results.

                                When you change programs too often, you don’t make progress on each exercise. It becomes hard to gauge whether you’re getting stronger or even getting results because you’re not allowing enough time for your body to adapt.

                                Strength is a skill that needs to be built and developed by practicing it consistently. If you’re changing the skill set too often, you won’t know if you’re improving, and, therefore, cutting yourself short of future muscle gains.

                                Conclusion

                                The steps to losing fat and gaining muscle are simple, but the journey to get there is not.

                                Tracking and measuring your calories is the quickest way to lose fat, along with increasing your activity level outside of the gym. Having a stronger, more toned body can be yours when you follow the laws of building muscles consistently.

                                Applying these methods will guarantee that you get the results you’re after!

                                More on How to Lose Fat and Gain Muscle

                                Featured photo credit: Benjamin Klaver via unsplash.com

                                Reference

                                [1] Cheat Day Design: What is TDEE?
                                [2] International Journal of Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders: Determinants of energy expenditure and fuel utilization in man: effects of body composition, age, sex, ethnicity and glucose tolerance in 916 subjects
                                [3] Current Opinion in Clinical Nutrition and Metabolic Care: Variability in energy expenditure and its components
                                [4] J Max Fitness: PROGRESSIVE OVERLOAD FOR MUSCLE MASS

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