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Health and fitness briefs, Oct. 9, 2012

Health and fitness briefs for Oct. 9, 2012
Oklahoman Published: October 9, 2012
/articleid/3716966/1/pictures/1852532">Photo - Woman exercising on elliptical machine
Woman exercising on elliptical machine

The seminars will be held on three consecutive Thursdays in October. Meetings run from 6 to 7 p.m. in the conference room of the Third Age Life Center, 5100 N Brookline Ave., Suite 100.

This week's session will focus on caring for a loved one who has dementia. On Oct. 18, learn how to maintain your own health while taking care of another person, and on Oct. 25, find out more about the legal and financial issues involved in caregiving.

Sessions are free, but registration is required. Reserve a spot for one or more of the sessions by calling 951-2277.


Maximize cardio workouts

Cardiovascular exercises are necessary to maintain a healthy body, but simple errors can limit the effectiveness of your workout. Life Fitness, a manufacturer of gym-quality exercise equipment, offers these tips for getting the most out of cardio training.

Posture is important. When you're tired and sore, it's tempting to slouch over the treadmill or elliptical machine and hold yourself up by clinging to the hand grips. Doing so, however, reduces the number of calories you'll burn and will limit the effectiveness of your lower body workout. You can also strain your wrists and back. If you're going to do the exercise, do it right. Straighten your back, look straight ahead and lightly grip the rails to maintain your balance.

The guy beside you may be standing on the tips of his toes on the summit trainer, pistoning his legs like a trip hammer, but you don't have to do that. Fast and furious isn't necessarily the best thing, and shallow steps can do more harm than good on the treadmill or summit machine. Instead, take long, comfortable strides that will work the large muscle groups in your legs and burn more calories in the long run.

Boredom is an enemy. It's good to master a technique, but if you do the same exercise routine repeatedly it becomes exactly that: routine. Try different preprogrammed workouts on treadmills and ellipticals. Challenge yourself and keep your muscles guessing.

Pay attention to your breathing. Make sure you're not holding your breath or breathing shallowly while doing cardio exercises; your muscles need oxygen to keep going. Take deep breaths, allowing air to enter and leave both your mouth and nose. If you can speak a sentence or two without gasping, you're OK, but if your pace leaves you feeling breathless, slow down a bit and focus on deep breathing.

For more information about Life Fitness, go online to

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by Ken Raymond
Book Editor
Ken Raymond is the book editor. He joined The Oklahoman in 1999. He has won dozens of state, regional and national writing awards. Three times he has been named the state's "overall best" writer by the Society of Professional Journalists. In...
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