Month: August 2020

Why are rest days important?

Physical activity is essential for our health and for the achievement of our personal fitness goals. However, few people understand that being too active can actually damage your chances of developing your muscles, defining your body and smashing your fitness goals, which is why rest days are so important. 

Doctors, trainers and physiotherapists… they all agree on the importance of rest after exercise. It is a common mistake to think that doing sports every day, to the best of our abilities, is the best option out there to obtain quick results – this really is not the case.

The body needs a period of recovery after extended effort. If we do not respect it, all the benefits that sport brings are no longer present and training loses its main objective: to improve health and well-being.

It does not matter what your area of exercise is. Whether you practice an aerobic sport such as cycling, swimming or running, or if you lift weights in the gym, rest days are as important to your success as workouts.

Rest reduces the risk of injury 

Many of the common exercise injuries occur due to over-exerting yourself, and believe it or not – rest really is the most effective preventive measure in this case. Giving your body some time to relax and get used to the tension is especially important when you start a new training program, because during this crucial period, you still do not know what your limits are and how far you can truly push yourself. Keep in mind that you shouldn’t just have one or two days of rest between workouts, but also take short breaks during your exercises.

Too much exercise can interfere with your sleep 

sleep

Physical activity stimulates blood flow, which means that every cell in your body receives nutrients faster and works better. The downside of this is that it can upset you and interfere with your regular sleep schedules and patterns. Sleep is essential!! So you should always make a strong effort to get around 7-8 hours of daily rest.

Rest allows your muscles to grow 

This is an important fact that is often overlooked by workout-a-holics. Exercise not only works the muscles, but also damages them. Rest days are necessary for tissues to heal and grow. This is the reason why any professional bodybuilding program is based on the exercise of different muscle groups every day.

Relaxing helps you stay motivated 

Training regularly is good, but over time it may seem boring, allowing you to get distracted or it can just stress you out too much to continue. With that being said – there are always some new and exciting techniques that can help you rekindle your passion for exercise. More relaxation periods can help you eliminate stress, allowing you to have more motivation and do the exercises much more calmly, with greater concentration.

Resting is necessary to protect your immune system 

Too much exercise does a lot of damage to the muscles, tendons and ligaments. Your immune system is forced to go full steam ahead in order to cure all these micro-fractures. This causes your body to overheat and increases the risk of injury, because your natural protections from the body cannot keep up.

As you have read, rest days are important not only because they are necessary to allow muscles to grow, but this time of inactivity also allows you to stay alert and focused without slowing down progress which ultimately enables you to stay healthy and achieve your goals.

Benefits to starting cycling

Since Lockdown, sales of bicycles have gone up by 60% as with gyms being closed, people took to two wheels to get their daily exercise. The government have also launched a new scheme to get people moving, which means you will see lots of new cycle lanes popping up around the UK. Whether you have a bike sitting in the garage that you haven’t used for a while, or you want to learn how to ride a bike, here are some benefits to starting cycling. 

1.A nicer commute

Heading back to the office after such a long time off isn’t a pleasant thought, and being stuck in traffic every day is a sure way to start your day off on a bad note. A great way to get a burst of energy in the morning is to bike ride to work, it’s also an easy way to integrate exercise into your life. Short journeys also contribute massively to pollution levels and often involve a fair amount of being stuck in stationary traffic. Starting cycling to work you’ll save money on petrol or public transport, and you’ll be helping the environment.

2.Mental health

There are so many ways that exercise can boost your mood, from the release of endorphins to the improved confidence that comes from learning a new skill and starting a new routine. Cycling combines the benefits of physical exercise with being outdoors. Being in the fresh air, and being able to see new views and explore, combined with the endorphins released, is a feel-good combination not to be missed. Let’s not forget, there’s nothing more freeing than the childlike joy of whizzing down a hill on your bike.

3.Weight loss

If your goal is weight loss, starting cycling can be a great way to aid you on your journey to better health. We all know the key to losing weight is ‘calories in vs calories out’, so you need to burn more calories than you eat.  Cycling burns between 400 and 1000 calories an hour, depending on intensity and rider weight. So if you eat well and add cycling into your routine, you should see the pounds dropping off you. 

4.Build Muscle 

Bike gears are designed to change the resistance as you ride. The resistance element of cycling means that it doesn’t just burn fat, but it also builds muscle. Riding a bike works your glutes, hamstrings, quads, and calves. Muscle is leaner than fat, and people with a higher percentage of muscle burn more calories even when sedentary.

5.Low impact

If you are just starting cycling after an injury, or are at the beginning of your fitness journey, the great thing about cycling is it is as low impact as you want to make it. Starting off slowly on flat ground is a great way to get used to riding. As cycling is not weight-bearing (like running), there is much less hard impact on your joints which means less damage and less chance of injury. Of course, you can head to the hills for more of a challenge if you think your body is ready for a higher impact workout. 

If you have started a new sport, or have been attending a fitness class that you love. Why not leave them a review on our site.

 

 

 

CLIF In The Spotlight

CLIF IN THE SPOTLIGHT

About CLIF

CLIF came along when founder Gary, was on a very long bike ride, and despite being hungry couldn’t face eating any more of the not so pleasant tasting energy bar. He then started a mission to create a nutritious energy bar, that tasted so much better than the rest. After countless hours of trying and testing different recipes, Clif Bar was created, named after Gary’s father and exercise companion, Clifford. Gary has truly put so much love and hard work into this passion project, and the results can be seen in the delicious CLIF products and their community of pro and amateur athletes who love the products.

For over 20 years they have been committed to organic ingredients and sustainable agriculture, advocating to help ensure it would one day become the norm in the food industry. Today their recipes honor sustainably grown, plant-based foods that nourish both our bodies and the outdoor places we play. Now more than ever their 5 Aspiration business model underpins everything they do: sustaining people, sustaining communities, sustaining the planet, sustaining our business, sustaining our brands.

Products

CLIF are exercise experts who know what’s needed to fuel our bodies. They have created a great range of bars and energy gels, each range tailored to suit your needs throughout your journey from pre to post-workout.

 

CLIF Bar

The no.1  selling energy bar in U.K./Canada/USA original energy bar made with wholesome organic rolled oats and Rainforest Alliance Cocoa, in a huge range of flavour combinations such as White Chocolate Macadamia Nut, Peanut Butter Banana with dark chocolate and Blueberry Crisp, there is a flavour to suit everyone’s tastes.

  • When to eat them – CLIF bars are designed to be eaten before exercise along with water to prevent hunger and supply energy to working muscles. During prolonged exercise such as hiking or bike touring. CLIF Bars can be also be eaten during activity to help satiate hunger and meet carbohydrate demands.
  • Nutrition – CLIF Bars are a source of protein and fibre with natural ingredients such as organic rolled oats, fruits and nuts. Each bar contains B6 and B12 which contribute to the normal release of energy for use in the body. With around 270 kcals, 40g carbohydrates, 10g protein per bar.

See the full range of CLIF bar products on our website.

 

CLIF Builders

This gluten-free, plant protein-packed bar was designed to help maintain and build muscle. It is the great-tasting bar that makes every ingredient count so you can get the most out of your workout.

  • When to eat them – Eat this bar post-workout, to aid recovery and to get the most out of your workout by contributing to muscle building, or consume a couple of hours before your workout for growth and maintenance of muscle mass.
  • Nutrition – Made solely with ingredients that you can recognize and taste like soy protein, rice flour, and cocoa. With an average of 280 kcal per bar, with 27g of carbohydrates and a huge 20g Protein.

See our full range of CLIF Builders reviews on our website.

 

CLIF Bloks

These are the latest source of carbohydrates for endurance athletes. CLIF Bloks are vegan-friendly chewable cubes, making it easy to customise and track calorie and electrolyte intake during long outings and races. The bloks come in mouthwatering fruity flavours like Mountain Berry, Margarita Citrus, and Tropical Punch which are a joy to eat.

  • When to eat – Half a packet of CLIF Blocks can be eaten 15 minutes prior to activity to increase blood sugar levels, followed by 1-2 packets per hour during activity to give you a boost of energy, followed by a mouthful of water.
  • Nutrition – This food supplement is made with ingredients such as tapioca syrup and natural fruit flavourings. With an average of 30kcal per Blok, and 7mg of potassium. Some flavours also include 25mgs of Green Tea caffeine for an extra boost!

See our full range of CLIF Bloks reviews on our website.

 

CLIF SHOT

These energy gels provide a source of carbohydrate that give you a much needed quick energy burst of energy. CLIF Shot has fewer ingredients than most other energy gels, which means you don’t get loaded down with contents that don’t directly enhance your performance.  The Shots come in a range of five flavours, from Razz and Chocolate to the caffeine-filled Citrus or Double Espresso.

  • When to eat – One CLIF Shot can be consumed 15 minutes prior to activity to increase blood sugar levels, followed by 1-2 packets per hour during activity to give you a boost of energy. If you are using a flavour with added caffeine, we recommend limiting to only 1 Shot during activity. It’s really important to follow your CLIF Shot with some water.
  • Nutrition – This food supplement is made with simple ingredients such as Cane Sugar, Green Tea, Pottasium and natural flavourings. With an average of 100kcal per Shot, and 50mg of potassium. Some flavours also include around 40mgs of Green Tea caffeine for an extra boost.

See our full range of CLIF Shot reviews on our website.

 

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