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True Fitness Equipment

 
  • Four ways to better your stationary bike workout

    Stationary bikes are a great way to build endurance and burn fat at the same time. TRUE Fitness has a line of stationary bikes that provide you with comfortable gel seats as well as aero bars for leverage during longer workouts. But in order to get your body in tip-top shape and ensure you're getting the best workout possible, there are a few things you can do to burn more fat even faster.

    Enter your information
    By entering your height, weight and age into the bike, you can help to create the best exercise plan for whatever level of fitness you may be best suited for. As you build up endurance and muscle, you can add more intensity by bumping up the resistance and speed.

    Adjust your form
    The way you sit on your bike can make a big difference in how effective your workout is at burning fat. If a seat is too high, you won't be getting a proper workout because your legs will have trouble reaching the pedals. If the chair is too low, you're putting unnecessary stress on your knees and your legs are likely to get fatigued much faster. Men's Health magazine suggested adjusting the seat of your bike so that your legs are fully extended when the pedals' furthest stretch.

    Vary your pace
    When sitting on a bike, it can be easy to maintain a steady pace without realizing it - especially if you're reading a magazine or watching TV. Changing up the speed at which you pedal can really amp up your workout. Plan to incorporate bursts of speed followed by periods of recovery to get your heart pumping and cut calories. Joe Friel, author of, "The Cyclist's Training Bible," says standing up can also be very beneficial.

    "Standing requires more muscle not only to push the pedals, but also to support and balance your body," said Friel.

    Cool down
    When you're done with your workout, make sure to cool down before getting off of your bike. You need to give your heart the chance to get back to its normal resting heart rate. Often times, the cool down period is just as important as the exercise itself. Immediately getting off of the machine after an intense workout can be dangerous.

    "A sudden stop in physical activity can cause blood pooling in your legs, your blood pressure could drop and you could get very dizzy," explained Jenn Burke, personal training manager at Crunch gym.

    Give yourself a few minutes to slow down your pace at the end of your workout. Men's Fitness suggested stretching as well to prevent your muscles from stiffening. Stretching relaxes the muscles and even helps you to feel less sore the next day!

  • Ten easy ways to burn 100 calories

    100 calories may not seem like much at first glance, but according to Fitbie, that can add up quickly. If you drop 100 calories daily, seven days a week, you could lose 10 pounds per year! Here are some obvious and not-so-obvious ways you can get in a quick workout:

    Cardio fitness equipment Although this may be an apparent way to shed the pounds, it works. Hopping on an elliptical or treadmill can help you burn up to 200 calories in just 15 to 20 minutes, said Fit Watch. Whether you're at home or visiting the gym, this option never gets stale. TRUE cardio fitness equipment works to deliver you the best possible workout. Their bikes have mesh seats for back support while the treadmills and ellipticals have preset workouts to get you on your way to a more trim figure.

    Iron your clothes Doing a simple chore like ironing your clothes for 38 minutes can help you burn 100 calories. Even though you may not realize it, you're continually moving your arms and shoulders, helping to get a quick workout and tone those muscles.

    Shop til you drop Well, not quite til you drop. It only takes 38 minutes of walking around the mall to lose 100 calories. What better way to lose weight than by shopping? Try walking at a more brisk pace from store to store to burn even more calories.

    Invite friends for dinner Yes, you can entertain guests for a dinner party and be on your way to losing weight in no time. According to Amy Gallo of Today, by chopping ingredients and getting the house cleaned and the table set, you can burn 100 calories in only 38 minutes. Just be sure to cook up a healthy recipe!

    Dance it out There are several video games on the market that allow you to dance your way to better health. Dance Dance Revolution, DanceMasters and Just Dance provide step-by-step choreographed dances for you to easily follow. Just Dance even has a workout portion of the game, where it tracks your progress and counts calories!

    Shovel snow There is one upside to having to shovel the driveway - getting in shape! By shoveling the white stuff, you'll be getting in a great workout. According to She Knows Health and Wellness shoveling snow for an hour can be comparable to a moderate cardio workout. If you're lifting bigger piles of snow, almost your entire body will be benefiting from this workout. You'll especially feel it in your back, biceps and shoulders.

    Jump on the trampoline This is an extremely fun way to burn calories and not even realize it! Gallo said jumping on a trampoline for just 27 minutes tones your legs, butt and abs, allowing you to hop your way to 100 less calories. If you want an even better workout, do tuck jumps to work your abs.

    Canoe Are you the outdoorsy type? Hop in a canoe to burn 100 calories in just 25 minutes. Not only can you enjoy the beauty of nature, but by paddling, your arms will be on their way to achieving a toned look. The more you paddle, the more you'll be building up your endurance. The core is also worked because paddling forces your body to rotate and twist through the torso.

    Walk your dog Both you and your pooch will benefit from this one. Your pup will appreciate the time outside and your body will be on its way to getting slim and trim. In only 29 minutes, you will have cut 100 calories with your best companion by your side.

    Use a punching bag Slugging a punching bag for just 15 minutes will help you shed 100 calories. This will build up strength and release any frustrations that have been accumulating throughout the day, helping to reduce stress. This quick workout is also a great cardio workout and gets your blood pumping fast.

  • Three common excuses for avoiding exercise and how to ignore them

    If you're anything like the rest of us, it's actually stepping onto your home gym equipment that's the hardest part. Most often we find reasons, big or small, to avoid exercising that day. There's always excuses to skip the gym. However, once you find that motivation and tell yourself reasons why you should be working out, you could be on your way to better overall health. Here are some of the top excuses when it comes to breaking a sweat:

    I'm too busy Of course with a hectic schedule, exercising can be harder to come by. But this doesn't mean it should be ignored altogether. Working out can be a big stress reliever from everything you have on your plate.

    "You make your schedule and can find the time to devote 45 minutes to one hour to you," explained The Huffington Post.

    If you mark your weekly calendar and make time for a workout, even if it's short, you're less likely to skip it. You won't have the same "I ran out of time" excuse because you made time! If you find there are days when you simply can't spare an hour, try to fit in a little movement here and there. Forbes said ten minutes can really add up if you make a habit out of it. Take the stairs at work or go take your dog for a quick walk in the morning.

    I'm too tired When your alarm goes off first thing in the morning, it's natural not to want to hop right out of bed and onto a cardio machine. When the morning sneaks up on you, remember why you want to workout. Really getting to the reason behind getting fit - whether it's to relieve stress or just become healthier in general - you're more likely to be motivated and stay motivated. Everyday Health said that once you get in the habit of up for an early morning jog, your body will become used to it and you'll find it gets easier to wake up.

    I don't want to exercise in front of others For some, going to the gym and breaking a sweat around strangers isn't their idea of a good time. And who can blame them? According to Forbes, women are actually less likely to take a walk if they don't see other women in the area exercising. Home gym equipment is an easy way to solve this issue. True Fitness designs premium cardio equipment like bikes, ellipticals and treadmills that are dedicated to giving you a smooth and quality workout. The TRUE Motivation Series of treadmills provides another layer of motivation for home workouts as well, with options like a heart rate cruise control that keeps you at a cardio level perfectly suited to your needs for the duration of the workout.

  • Six mistakes you don't want to make on the treadmill

    It's no big secret that home treadmills can give you a chance to shed those excess pounds and even improve your overall health at the same time. However, if you want to see these results, it's vital to use the equipment in a way that helps your body rather than hurts it. There are a few common mistakes that avid treadmill users fall prey to that can turn a potentially successful workout upside down. Avoid these treadmill blunders to stay in shape and really pump up your workout:

    Relying on the handrails
    The rails on the sides of the treadmill really slow down your body's ability to get a proper workout if you're constantly holding onto them. Although the rails may be tempting at times when you get fatigued, try to push through it. Your body will be better for it.

    "When you hold onto the rails, you're holding your weight up, and not using your legs to hold your weight up," explained fitness manager Jennifer Poulsen of 24 Hour Fitness. "In that case, you're not getting your heart rate up, and you're not burning enough calories."

    If you're really in need of a break, ignore those handrails and simply slow down your pace again until you feel you can pick up speed.

    Bad posture
    If you're walking or running on the treadmill with bad posture, you may be burning calories, but you also may be giving yourself back problems. SelfGrowth.com said that many people tend to lean forward and hunch over on their treadmill during their workout. This can cause damage to the muscles in your back and create other problems later on. According to Arthritis Today, you should instead walk naturally, just as you would outside.

    Ignoring the incline
    Even if you're moving at a swift pace, you may not be going as fast as you think you are. When you run outside, the terrain and weather, such as natural wind resistance contributes to a more intense run. The incline on a treadmill sometimes does part of the work for you. Therefore, Active recommended adding a one or two percent incline to increase your pace and give you an extra push. Increasing the incline also gives your leg muscles a better workout!

    Exercising without tunes
    Although you may not realize it, listening to music can actually help improve your workout in a few ways.

    "Listening to music while walking on the treadmill can improve focus, relieve stress and boost motivation," explained Arthritis Today.

    If you're anything like the rest of us, motivation is sometimes hard to come by on the treadmill. It's easy to want to just give up or slow down. Music provides a way to keep you going and improve your fitness level. Try creating a playlist before hopping on the treadmill of all your favorite songs that will give you that extra push you need to finish your workout.

    A choppy stride
    Short, choppy steps on the treadmill won't get you very far. Some individuals tend to change their running technique because they're on a machine rather than outdoors. However, it's important to maintain the same pace and running techniques on both. Try taking natural strides on a treadmill instead. Pei Road Runners said that overstriding is a common mistake.

    Getting off the treadmill
    When you get tired and want a drink of water, it's many people's first instinct to step off the treadmill and rest on the sides. However, this may be doing damage to your joints and disrupts the flow of your workout, according to Active. Instead, you should simply reduce your speed so you can take a quick breather, grab a drink of water and be back on your way to a better workout. Once you step on the sides for a break, it's easy to lose that motivation that you worked so hard to maintain in the first place.

  • Three things you should never do before a workout

    When you've finally found the motivation to hop on that elliptical machine, you'll want to make sure you get the best and safest workout possible. Although your workout is important, what you do before your workout can actually make a difference in your exercise plan and progress! Make sure to avoid these pre-workout blunders to ward off injury and shed off those excess pounds.

    Never skip stretching Stretching before exercising is one of the best ways to prevent injury. It loosens up your muscles and gets them warm for an intense workout. Improving Your World says that when muscles are stiff, your overall fitness will be negatively affected. When you have more flexible muscles before a workout, you're likely to have full range of motion. The Mayo Clinic said that stretching also increases blood flow to the muscles. However, it's important to remember to never stretch cold. Yes, stretching is important, but stretching when the muscles are cold can lead to injury.

    "Instead, warm up with five minutes of light cardio or start off slow for the first 10 minutes of your run, bike ride or swim," explained Self magazine.

    Never work out on an empty stomach Working out before you've eaten anything can cause muscle loss, according to the Strength and Conditioning Journal. Brad Schoenfeld, president of Global Fitness Services and a professor in the department of exercise science at Lehman College, spoke on this, saying:

    "When you're hungry, your body goes into survival mode and draws protein away from muscle, where it's less crucial to survival, than from your kidneys and liver, where the body normally looks for protein."

    When you lose the muscle mass you worked so hard for at the gym, your metabolism slows down, making it all the more difficult to slim down. However, it's important to keep in mind that eating too much or eating the wrong foods can really be detrimental to your workout as well. Eating too much can leave you feeling less energized and even lead to cramping, producing a lower quality workout. U.S. News and World Report suggested you avoid salty french fries and carbonated drinks - i.e. carbs and sugar - before any workout. This is a good way to give yourself and upset stomach and a not-so-great workout. Instead, Her Campus recommended Greek yogurt, toast with peanut butter or fruit.

    Never workout dehydrated Because our bodies are about two-thirds water, it's vital for your body to get enough H20 for an effective workout. Her Campus suggested drinking one glass prior to your workout to ensure that you're hydrated. But, don't overdo it! Drinking too much can leave you feeling full and bloated.

  • Seven foods that are secretly adding to your waist

    Even if you're working to shed excess pounds in an ergonomically safe way with true treadmills, true ellipticals and true bikes, what you're putting into your body could be reversing your hard work. Some of the foods you're consuming could potentially be putting the pounds back on that you worked so hard to keep off. Be wary of what you're eating, even if it may seem healthy at first glance. Here are 10 foods you should stray from when trying to whittle down your middle:

    Artificial sweeteners
    Never opt for artificial sweeteners over regular sugar. Dumping these packets into your morning coffee everyday may set you back more than you realize.

    Artificial sweeteners, register as much sweeter than sugar to your taste buds, and can reset them to crave more sugary foods. "As a result, you end up eating more junk," Cosmopolitan magazine explained.

    If you settle for a reasonable amount of normal sugar, you'll find you won't be indulging on sweet treats later on. You may also find you have more energy if you cut little extra treats out of your diet.

    Frozen dinners
    Even though some frozen meals promise a healthy meal, many dinners may not be as healthy as you imagine. Many are packed with preservatives and a high amount of sodium. You can make a healthy meal just as quickly using fresh ingredients.Try grilling up some chicken with a few vegetables for the same meal with healthier rewards.

    Skim milk
    Dr. Mehmet Oz revealed a shocking twist regarding your dairy intake. Next time you're at the grocery store shopping for milk, you'll want to grab the 2 percent over the skim. Why? Even though there may be less calories in skim, there's more sugar. Therefore, it's actually more fattening than regular milk. So go ahead and enjoy that glass of 2 percent.

    Salad dressing
    You may be proud of yourself for opting for a nice green salad for lunch. However, what you're drizzling on your salad could make the difference between a healthy meal and hidden extra calories. The creamier dressings are the ones you should be aware of. According to Associates in Nutrition Therapy, restaurants usually drench your salad in a whopping eight tablespoons of dressing. The recommended amount is only two tablespoons. By asking for dressing on the side or choosing a lighter dressing, you'll be saving yourself tons of calories.

    Wheat bread
    Yes, wheat bread is great for you and has fiber to keep you full and energized. However, make sure to really examine the packaging before you buy what many companies call wheat bread. Self magazine warns that if the bread doesn't say "100 percent whole wheat," then it's probably not. Choose bread that has at least two grams of fiber so you know you're actually consuming a healthy grain.

    Margarine
    This high-in-calories alternative to butter may actually be worse for you than you thought. Cosmopolitan magazine said that margarine is filled with trans fats, which doesn't do any favors for your cholesterol level. Instead, use a small amount of butter or even olive oil. Land O'Lakes Margarine, for example, has two and a half more grams of trans fats than regular butter. That's more than one day's limit!

    Tortillas
    Even when there are plenty of vegetables and protein-filled meats wrapped in a tortilla, you're not necessarily indulging in a healthy meal. Although they may seem harmless, don't be fooled. According to Shape magazine, a tortilla by itself can hold up to 800 calories! You're better off choosing whole wheat bread, or if you must, sharing the meal with a friend for half the calories.

  • How to properly use your stationary bike

    Stationary bikes have always been a great way to get in a cardiovascular workout without putting a large amount of stress on your joints. Both your legs and core can really benefit from what stationary bikes have to offer. In order to get the best workout possible on your stationary bike and avoid potential injury, it's important to know how to properly use your bike.

    Stationary bikes
    There are two types of home exercise bikes. One of them is the upright, stationary bike. Much like a traditional bicycle, you're sitting up straight while your legs extend down to the pedals. You can get the same workout you would outdoors on a normal bicycle, but lucky for you, there's no inclement winter weather to worry about!

    Recumbent exercise bike
    A recumbent exercise bike is similar to an upright bike, but is different in a few ways. Instead of pedaling straight down, the pedals are located out in front of you. You also have a chair-like seat which supports your back and creates a more relaxed and comfortable position. Active said this seat promotes better spinal posture and allows you to multi-task due to the hands-free environment.

    How to set up your bike
    It's vital to know how to set your bike up correctly, whether it's a recumbent exercise bike or a stationary bike. Doing so will help you to get the best workout possible out of the equipment and help to avoid injury.

    One of the best ways to make sure the bike is properly fitted is to adjust the height of the seat on an upright bike. Spark People suggested adjusting your seat based on the height of your hip. Once you sit on the bike, your legs should be fully extended, helping you to get the best leg workout. You should also make sure the height of the handlebar is in a comfortable position.

    "Raising the handlebars higher will alleviate lower back stress that occurs when you lean forward. You should be able to reach the handlebars easily, keeping your elbows slightly bent." explained Spark People.

    If you're using a recumbent exercise bike, you can choose to move the seat forward and back. Much like an upright bike, your legs should be almost fully extended out in front of you to give you a full pedal stroke. You can also choose to adjust the degree in which your seat leans back. However, it's important to remember not to tilt the seat too far back. According to Spine Health, this can potentially hyperextend the back and strain the muscles.

    For either a recumbent exercise bike or a stationary bike, you should adjust the foot straps so your foot fits snug and won't fall out while pedaling.

  • How to live a longer and healthier life

    Although many wish to live a long and healthy life, sometimes things like greasy fast food, busy schedules and guilty pleasures get in the way. What you may not know is that there are simple ways throughout your day to increase your health and may even help you to live a longer life! Check out these lifestyle tips below and be on your way to living a healthier life:

    Exercise! Even though this may be the most obvious beneficial act you can do to improve your health, its importance should be restated. Fitness treadmills, stationary bikes and ellipticals are all simple pieces of equipment that offer easy ways to get in your daily dose of exercise. Dr. Mehmet Oz explained to Good Morning America that instead of fitting in an intense 30-minute workout everyday, you should be working on incorporating more frequent physical activity into your everyday life. For example, Dr. Oz suggested pedaling on a stationary bike while watching TV or taking the stairs rather than the elevator. Either way, exercise should be considered a vital element in your day-to-day life.

    Grab a mint According to Rodale, peppermint has the power to increase exercise performance.

    "Researchers say that the scent of mint alters your perception of how hard you're exercising. which can make workouts seem less strenuous so you don't mind exercising longer," explained Rodale.

    A delicious way to be tricked into a better workout? We'll take it!

    Eat breakfast You know what they say, breakfast is the most important meal of the day! And for good reason. Not only does it boost your metabolism, according to AARP, this morning meal has the power to make you look younger as well! However, make sure you're not opting for a sugary breakfast. Although Pop-Tarts may satisfy your taste buds, they're not doing your body any favors. Try oatmeal instead for its high fiber and low-glycemic index, which may help to ward off wrinkles. You can even add your favorite fruits like strawberries or blueberries to add a touch of sweetness to your oatmeal, while still keeping your morning meal healthy.

    Stretch Activities requiring stretching, like yoga, have been proven to reduce stress by relaxing the blood vessels. Rodale suggested starting off your morning with a simple cat stretch. This can relieve tension in the body while promoting blood flow and healthier posture. You can also fit stretching into your day by using TV commercial breaks as an easy opportunity to loosen up your muscles.

    Catch more z's By heading to bed earlier, you could be lengthening your life. Getting a good night's sleep can help significantly increase brain power and cognitive function.

    "Sleep regenerates neurons that enable the brain to function optimally," explained Jane Ferrie, senior researcher at University College London Medical School.

    According to AARP, those who received less shut-eye over a five-year span showed decreased mental function, which was equal to 4 to 7 years of aging. So, do yourself a favor and get a good nights sleep. Your refreshed body will be sure to thank you in the morning.

    Drink plenty of water The benefits water provides for your body are truly endless. Getting more H2O into your day can help give you healthier skin and hair, protects your joints and even aids in digestion. A good way to see if your body is fully hydrated is to check your urine.

    "You should drink enough water that your urine looks like pale lemonade," said Chris Mohr, registered dietitian and nutrition consultant to the Cincinnati Bengals.

    So, drink up! After all, your brain is made up of 80 percent water.

  • Six simple ways to cut calories

    Shedding pounds is usually not an easy task for anyone. It seems no matter how many diets we put ourselves through, nothing seems to make a difference. However, there are easy ways to cut calories throughout your day that won't leave your stomach grumbling the way many diets can. Try out a few of these methods below to cut excess calories and help yourself become a healthier you!

    Exercise Of course one of the most efficient way to cut calories is by exercising. Getting in cardio workouts on fitness treadmills, stationary bikes and elliptical machines can be a great way to build endurance and burn calories fast.

    Skip the whip As tempting as whipped cream may sound on a hot chocolate or latte, it's best to skip it. Why? Even though it's light and airy feel may seem harmless, don't let that fool you. According to Self Nutrition Data, whipped cream from some coffee chains can add up to 100 more calories to your drink order.

    Sleep There could not possibly be an easier way to burn calories than to sleep them off.

    "Insufficient shut-eye appears to increase production of the stress hormone cortisol, which regulates appetite," explained Health magazine.

    High levels of cortisol make you more likely to indulge. Lack of sleep also keeps your body from burning off carbohydrates. If they're not burned off while sleeping, they're then stored as fat. So, go to bed!

    Log your calories You truly don't know how much you're eating until you start writing down everything you eat. This allows you to become more aware of what you're putting in your body and you feel accountable for the things you write down. If you're not logging your calories, you're making it easier to brush off that extra piece of cake after dinner. It's also a good idea to take your food diary with you everywhere you go, as to not lose track of what you've eaten after a long day.

    Switch hands When snacking, try switching over to the hand you're less comfortable using.

    "People who snacked using their nondominant hands reduced about 30 percent of their total intake, compared with those using their dominant hands," reported CNN.

    Next time you sit down on the couch with a bag of popcorn or chips, be wary of which hand you're using!

    Increase your protein Having a diet rich in protein helps to build up muscle. Studies have shown that women who eat more protein lose more fat and maintain more muscle than those who don't. Health magazine recommended adding the amino acid leucine into your diet. Conveniently, this amino acid is readily available in many types of eggs, fish, poultry, dairy and beef. Try Greek yogurt for a creamy and delicious way to add more protein into your diet.

  • How to stay healthy while dining out

    When the weekend rolls around, chances are you may be eating at a restaurant at least once. If you're dieting or trying to stay healthy, dining out may put your plan to a halt even when you're exercising on cardio equipment like fitness treadmills and stationary bikes. However, there are several ways to go out to eat while maintaining your trim figure at the same time. Keep the following tips in mind for next time you're at a restaurant:

    Skip the bread basket
    Some restaurants provide their guests with a basket of bread to snack on before their meal arrives. As tempting as this might be, it's better to skip it. We all know how hard it is to only eat one slice when you have an entire basket in front of you. If you don't think you have the willpower, don't hesitate to ask your waiter to take the basket away. With the bread basket out of sight, you won't be tempted to indulge.

    Share a meal
    Most often, the portion sizes prepared by restaurant chefs are much more than you actually need. Even though you may be full, it's easy to overeat when you have that much food in front of you. One simple way to cut calories would be to share a meal. If you're opting to dine by yourself, Prevention magazine suggested asking your server to give you a half-portion instead.

    Grab a to-go box
    Another easy way to decrease your calorie count would be to ask for a to-go box when your meal arrives.

    "Restaurant portions have ballooned in recent years, and many of us don't know when to stop eating," Discovery Fit & Health explained.

    By opting for a to-go box right away, you can put half of the dish in the doggie bag and save it for later, before you overindulge.

    Opt for a lighter salad dressing
    Choosing a lighter dressing allows you to still have a flavorful salad, but without the heavy, mayonnaise-based topping that weighs down you and your meal. Dressings like Ranch and Thousand Island will pack more calories per bite than a vinaigrette.

    If you can't part with the creamy dressings, Prevention suggested asking for the dressing on the side. This way, the salad won't be drenched and you can enjoy its flavor without the extra calories.

    Substitute your side
    If the meal you ordered comes with fries, ask your server for healthier alternatives like steamed vegetables or fresh fruit. These options will provide you with the energy your body needs without the saturated fat. Although turning away fries is not the easiest task, your body will thank you later.

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