Is the Gym Safe to Go Back to Since COVID?

Since the pandemic hit, many of us are struggling to get back to the new normal, especially when it comes to our gym workouts. In accordance with many local regulations, a lot of gyms are staying closed. Others have reopened, but patrons have to wonder, is the gym safe to go back to since COVID?

This article will review the current data to give you the answers you are looking for.

The Research

In Norway, a study was conducted of 3,000 people who either worked out at a gym or stayed home. Results showed that there was little difference in COVID infections among the participants. However, one should consider that Norway is less populous and less homogenous than the U.S., so it is difficult to make a direct comparison.

Meanwhile, in South Korea, cases were much higher. It has been shown that over 100 people contracted the illness while using sports facilities and working out at fitness dance classes. Instructors were often carriers who contracted the virus at workshops and then passed it on to students.

The Factors

There are many reasons why gyms are such a breeding ground for germs. The shared equipment plays a huge role.

On top of this, the moist air coupled with a lack of air flow contributes to a greater chance of the disease spreading. For example, it has been found that the respiratory droplets circulated by an air conditioner can spread the virus.

Is the Gym Safe?

So considering all the facts that have been laid out, is it safe to return to the gym?

If gyms are opening in your area, here are some things to consider.

Risk Factor: The first thing to think about is how susceptible you are to the disease. If you have preexisting conditions that compromise your immune system, you may not want to return to the gym until a vaccine is safely in place.

Gym Policies: You will also want to consider what the gym is doing to keep its patrons safe. Are they enforcing mask wearing and social distancing? Are they taking measures to keep the gym clean?

Some gyms are also doing temperature checks at the door, erecting plastic pods for workouts, and doing contactless sign-ins. Obviously, the harder your gym is working to keep germs under control, the safer it will be to work out.

However, no matter what your physical condition may be or how hard your gym is working to keep the environment COVID free, you always run the risk of contracting the virus. Therefore, you may be best off working out outdoors (some gyms are offering outdoor services) or working out at home.

All of us are looking forward to getting back to our workout routines. But if you’re wondering “is the gym safe,” unfortunately, it looks like no one is able to give a confident green light when it comes to returning. In the meantime, it is advisable to look into other options when it comes to staying in the best shape possible.

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The Pros and Cons of Doing Lunges (And How to Do Them Safely)

These days, we are all looking to exercise more efficiently. Lunges are a great lower body exercise that stand the test of time as one of the most effective types of workouts.

Lunges are great for keeping you in shape, but, like many other types of exercise, they can also result in injury. This article will review the pros and cons of doing lunges and how to do them safely.

Benefits of Lunges

Here are some reasons why lunges are an essential part of any lower body workout.

Good for Weight Loss: Lunges target the large muscles in the lower body. Therefore, they help build lean muscle while reducing body fat. This, in turn, increases resting metabolism so you burn more calories.

Improves Balance: Lunges cause you to work both sides of your body independently. This helps you develop your stabilizing muscles, so you become more balanced and more coordinated. Lunges also work your spine and core to improve balance.

Improves Posture and Alignment: Lunges’ ability to work both sides of the body improve posture and alignment. They correct imbalances in the body and they strengthen the back and core muscles to improve posture and reduce the chance of injury.

Versatile: Lunges are great because they are so versatile. There are a variety of lunges you can do that will work different sections of the lower body. These include stationary lunges, side lunges, walking lunges, reverse lunges, twist lunges, curtsy lunges, and lunges and squats.

Do Them Anywhere: Because lunges don’t require equipment, you can do them anywhere – in the park, in the office, at home –  lunges are great anytime you need a good stretch.

Lunge Injuries

If there’s one downside to lunges, it’s that they can result in injuries. Therefore, it is important to follow certain guidelines when engaging in this exercise. These are as follows:

Don’t Overstretch: If you put one of your feet too far backward or forward, you will put too much pressure on your knees, and you can cause muscle and ligament strains and tears.

Maintain Proper Form: When doing a lunge, you want to make sure your knee is aligned with or behind the ankle. Pay attention to your posture making sure you are not bending your body forward or arching your back. You should also make sure your front heel remains pressed firmly on the ground.

To maintain proper form you should:

1.      Step forward with one leg making sure you have hip distance between the legs.

2.      Slowly lower the back knee until both knees are at a 90-degree angle making sure the front knee does not go beyond the front ankle.

3.      Step back into the starting position and repeat.

Lunging with Bad Knees: If your knees are injured, lunges are not the best exercise for you. Lunges put a lot of pressure on the knees and joints. If your knees are bad, research alternate exercises that will help you work the lower body.

Moving Too Quickly: As with any exercise, moving too quickly will increase the chance of injury. Be sure to take it nice and slow making sure you are maintaining proper form as you go.

Now that you know the do’s and don’ts of lunges, you are ready to work them into your workout routine. Which lunges are your favorite? 

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How to Keep Your Dog Healthy with All the Nutrients it Needs

If you have a dog, you want to do all you can to keep him healthy. The right diet will play a major role in your dog’s wellbeing.

There are certain nutrients that are recommended for keeping your dog healthy. This article will review those nutrients so you know what to look for when creating a meal plan for your canine.

Ways to Keep Your Dog Healthy

Water

Just like water is an essential part of a human’s diet, it is also important in a dog’s diet. It helps to transport nutrients to cells, it regulates body temperature, it cushions the organs and nervous system and it supports digestion. You should always have a bowl of water available for your dog. They will take as much as they need.

Protein

Protein supports a dog’s hair, nails, skin, muscle and bones. It helps make hormones, enzymes, antibodies and neurotransmitters playing a huge role in keeping the body functioning properly. Dogs do not produce protein naturally so it is essential to include high protein foods in their meals.

Vitamins

There are several vitamins that are needed to keep a dog healthy. These include:

·         Vitamin D: Regulates calcium and phosphorus levels

·         Vitamin A, C & E: Boosts the immune system

·         Vitamin K: Helps the blood clot

·         Vitamin B12: Maintains the nervous system

Minerals

The minerals necessary for keeping a dog healthy are as follows:

·         Calcium and Phosphorus: These are recommended for bone health.

·         Iron: Iron is essential for carrying blood through the body.

·         Zinc: Zinc assists in wound healing.

·         Selenium: Selenium provides antioxidant support.

·         Sodium, calcium, magnesium and potassium: These minerals aid in nerve transmission.

·         Sodium, chloride and potassium: These minerals regulate fluid balance.

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are a good source of glucose, which provides fuel that gives a body energy. It provides dogs with the minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, and nutrients that are essential for good health.

Fats

Fat supplies the body with energy. It is rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids that support the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins and it protects the internal organs, regulates body temperature, and promotes a healthy nervous system.

Supplements Can Help

It can be difficult finding a dog food that provides all the nutrients a dog needs. If you feel your dog isn’t getting enough of the ingredients that keep him healthy, you may consider adding a supplement to his diet. If you are looking for a supplement you can count on, Vital Planet’s Alaskan Omega-3 for Dogs is recommended.

The Vital Planet company is committed to using nourishing natural ingredients to manufacture products that provide pets with optimal health. Their Alaskan Omega-3 Softgels promotes joint health and nervous system health and supports hair and skin health. The softgel formula makes them easy for your dog to swallow.

Pet lovers will want to do all they can to keep their dog healthy. The right food and supplements will help keep him in the best health possible. What do you recommend for boosting your dog’s wellbeing?

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Ways to Prevent Heat Stroke

As the weather heats up, many of us are looking forward to having fun in the sun. At the same time, we know we must protect ourselves so as not to become overheated. If we get too hot, we can become dehydrated and suffer from heat injuries including heat stroke.

Fortunately, there are many ways to prevent heat stroke. This article will look at what heat stroke is and give you some tips so you can avoid becoming overheated.

What is Heatstroke?

Heatstroke is a common heat injury that can occur if your body temperature hits 104 degrees Fahrenheit or higher. When this happens, you may experience any of the following signs and symptoms.

●      Altered Mental State: This includes confusion, agitation, slurred speech, delirium, irritability, seizures and coma.

●      Change in Sweat Patterns: If heat stroke is brought on by hot weather, sweat patterns may change so that skin will feel hot and dry to the touch. However, if heat stroke is due to strenuous physical activity, skin will feel dry or slightly moist.

●      Nausea and Vomiting: You may feel sick to your stomach and vomiting may occur.

●      Flushed Skin: Your skin may turn red due to the rise in temperature.

●      Rapid Breathing and Increased Heart Rate: The heat puts a lot of stress on your heart as it works to cool your body. You may experience rapid, shallow breathing and an increase in heart rate as a result.

●      Headache: The extreme heat may cause a headache.

If you are experiencing these symptoms, it is extremely important to seek treatment. Untreated heat stroke can result in damage to the kidneys, heart, brain, and muscles. It can also raise the risk of serious health complications and death.

Ways to Prevent Heat Stroke 

Because heat stroke is so dangerous, it’s important to do all you can to protect yourself during hot weather. The following prevention steps are recommended.

●      Avoid Wearing Excess Clothing: Loose-fitting, lightweight clothing will allow your body to cool off in hot temperatures.

●      Don’t Forget the Sunblock: Sunburn makes your entire body temperature rise. Make sure to protect against sunburn by wearing sunblock, a sun hat, sunglasses and by staying in the shade.

●      Hydrate: Drink plenty of fluids to keep your body temperature within normal range.

●      Be Extra Careful if You Take Medication: Certain medicines can affect your body’s ability to  stay hydrated and dissipate heat. If you are taking medications, be careful to stay out of the sun and act accordingly to cool down if you start experiencing heat stroke symptoms.

●      Avoid Physical Exertion in the Heat: If you know it’s going to be hot outside, limit exercise to early morning and late evening hours when the temperature will be lower. If possible, exercise only inside air-conditioned spaces.

●      Never Leave Anyone in a Parked Car: The temperature inside a parked car can rise 20 degrees in 10 minutes when parked in the sun. Therefore, you should never leave anyone in a parked car, even if the windows are cracked and it’s parked in the shade. Lock your doors when leaving the car to ensure no children can crawl in.

Now that you know the ways to prevent heat stroke, what precautions will you be taking to make sure your body temperature stays low this summer?

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Is it Normal to Shake While Yawning?

Have you ever had a really good yawn and you notice that your body shakes a little? If so, don’t become alarmed. This is a normal response in most people that has to do with the way your body reacts while you are yawning.

If you are wondering, is it normal to shake while yawning, read on to find out more.

Why Do We Yawn?

Before discussing the shaking that occurs during the yawning process, let's take a look at why we yawn in the first place.

No one is really quite sure why we yawn, but the most popular theory is that yawning works to cool the brain.

The brain consumes 40% of metabolic energy and tends to run hot. Yawning produces a cooling effect on the brain to keep it from overheating. Temperatures tend to rise when we are tired, bored, or in warmer temperatures.

When we yawn, it may be effective in increasing arterial blood flow and allowing the flow of cooler blood into the brain.

Secondary behaviors like stretching and throwing your arms back can also contribute to the cooling process. These motions allow cool air to reach the underarm area and they prep your muscles for action.

Is it Normal to Shake While Yawning?

If we follow this theory of yawning working as a way to cool the body down, it makes sense that we shake when we yawn.

Often, when we adjust to cooler temperatures, we shiver and shake. The shaking that occurs during yawning may be due to our body getting used to the cool down.

Others say that the shaking is connected to the stretching movement.

It is said that stretching works to alleviate a build up and uneven concentration of chemicals in the muscles. The increased tension and change in position the stretching produces forces the chemicals to go back to even out and balance.

This same tension can produce shaking in the body.

If you ever see someone arm wrestling or lifting heavy weights, you will notice that they shake. In these instances, a similar process is occurring. Like yawning, the tension in the muscles is causing the chemicals to move around producing a shaking motion. 

When is Shaking Bad?

Although it is perfectly normal to shake when you yawn, there are times when excessive shaking and shivering can be a sign of a more serious problem. Shaking could be due to a temporary illness accompanied by a fever or it could be linked to anxiety and stress.

In more severe situations, it can be linked to low blood sugar, sepsis or psychogenic movement disorders. If you are experiencing shivering and shaking on a regular basis, you may want to talk to your physician to find out if it’s caused by a serious health condition.

If you are wondering, is it normal to shake while yawning, the answer is, yes, it is absolutely normal. It may be caused by the release of chemicals that occur while stretching or it may be due to the temperature drop in the brain, but either way, it is nothing to worry about. It’s just another way our body is working to keep everything in check.  

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