How Bad Is Running On a Treadmill For Your Knees

Treadmills are one of the most popular fitness equipment, all over the world. And what makes them popular is the simplicity and effectiveness of their workout. But there is one particular query which needs to be answered for people who have problems with their joints and knees. And that is – how bad is running or walking on treadmill for your knees.

Now answering this question is not as simple as a yes or a no. There are some research theories and tests which will favor it and some will be against it. Actually it depends on what you overall health conditions are and how bad knee problem do you have.
knee

A simple example would explain it better – if you are overweight (which a lot of people who want to use treadmill are), there is already enough pressure on your knees because of your weight and you don’t want to make the conditions worse by running on a treadmill. In this case you need to strengthen your leg as well as core muscles so that the extra weight can be balanced out.

In general, treadmills do not really affect your knees, if you maintain a good health. In fact impact on treadmills is more cushioned than running on the hard ground. There are a lot of factors which come into the picture when you want to know about the impact of running on a treadmill. Some of these factors can be age, fitness levels, body weight, technique, shoes etc. So all of these factors can work in favor of you or against you.

Running will only give you more strength and stamina as its advantages. There are a lot of benefits of running but if your knees can not handle the extra pressure you have to be careful with them and build up your strength as well.

Another important thing to consider here is that you should not start too much too soon. As with any other exercise, you have to give enough time to your body to condition and heal itself. If you already have a knee aches or hurt, then move slowly, build up your strengths and then add more intensity to your workouts with time as you gain more strength.

So, treadmills are good if you know the basics behind your exercise.

Small Treadmill For Home

There are many different factors which can be considered when buying a treadmill and size is definitely one of them. Not everyone can get a big bulky piece of equipment so if you have limited space, you can get a small treadmill for home. There are many different models to choose from but we will discuss only the best ones which are available in the market.

Here are the 3 we shortlisted –

  • Phoenix 98510 Easy-Up Manual Treadmill
  • Weslo Cadence G 5.9 Treadmill
  • LifeSpan TR200 Compact Treadmill

Our review gives you the dimensions along with other aspects of these machines so that it is easier for you to choose a small treadmill for your home.
First on our list is the

Phoenix 98510 Easy-Up Manual Treadmill

This is a nice and compact model from Phoenix health and fitness which is a good brand for fitness equipment. This is a manual treadmill which is powered by your own effort. If you want something which does not take much of your space then manual treadmills can be your best bet. A good manyal machine can give you some good workouts.

It has a heavy flywheel and a nice and sturdy belt giving it a good motion.  Here are some of the specifications of the machine –
Specifications:

  • Heavy duty weighted flywheel offers a smooth, quiet operation
  • Spring loaded pull pin securely locks the unit in the upright (storage) position and makes it easy to release for operation
  • Single button electronics displays speed, distance, time, calories and scan (two AA batteries included)
  • Water bottle included
  • Walking surface: 41″ x 13″
  • Dimensions: 46.5″ x 21.1″ x 50″ (open); 21.7″ x 21.1″ x 50.2″ (folded)

One of the best things about this treadmill is that it can fold up nicely in an upright position so you just tuck it away when not in use. It is ideal for brisk walking and jogging. If you are a heavy runner you may not like the narrow running area.

>>> Get the best price for the treadmill here <<<

Weslo Cadence G 5.9 Treadmill

This is one of the bigger machines in our list as it has a broader footprint which also means that you get more space to run. Weslo Cadence G 5.9 Treadmill is big when you compare it to other small machines but it is still quite compact than the mid-sized treadmills. The machine has a silent motor that does its job well.

If you don’t have space for a big treadmill but want to go for a nice motorized equipment, this can be your best choice.  It can fold up neatly so you can move it around without hitting on other things at home.

Here are some of the specifications.

  • Space saver design. This treadmill can fold up.
  • Six personal trainer workouts.
  • Two-position incline.
  • Comfortable cushioning.

>>> Get the best price for the treadmill here. <<<

LifeSpan TR200 Compact Treadmill

Here is another good treadmill which gives you the flexibility for a nice workout and the best part, it comes with a lifetime warranty. The treadmill has a wide body at 17 inches which gives you more space for your runs and a 48 inches of length, you can go for longer strides.

This product gives you a good room for your exercise and it also folds up nicely. It can be folded down neatly for storage into an 11 inch high flat surface. This treadmill however is limited by its speed which varies between 0.5 to 6mph making it suitable for walking and jogging. You can use its incline to increase the intensity of your exercise at it can give you a 10 inch incline.

A user friendly console, lifetime warranty and wide running area makes it a good choice for home use.

Here are some of the specifications –

  • Fully assembled treadmill that folds compactly and fits under bed or in closet
  • Blue LCD console tracks your time, calories, distance, steps, speed, and incline
  • Quick-start speed and incline buttons; 3 speed and 3 incline programs
  • Built-in speakers and headphone port; contact heart rate grips
  • Measures 30.5 x 51.5 x 60.5 inches (W x H x D); lifetime frame warranty
  • 2010 Treadmill Doctor “Best Buy” Award Winner; 2010 Fitness Professor “Best Treadmill Under $1,000” Award Winner

>>> Get the best price for the treadmill here <<<

The Renegade Diet Review

If you are reading this, you probably know about The renegade diet by Jason Ferrugia. IF you don’t let me tell you something about it. This is a diet plan which claims to get you ripped if you follow it. I ll get into more detail with it.

We all know that diet plays a very important role in muscle building. Whether you are bulking up with muscle or cutting down on your fat, It’s the diet which is the most important factor besides your exercises. Now as simple it may sound, most of us have this problem of following the right kind of a diet.

Most Muscle Diet Plans Are Flawed and Focus More On Muscle Than Overall Health

There is a risk involved with most diet plans which many of us may or may not know about. Some of the diet plans may even be dangerous as they can cause fatigue and malnutrition. So it is very important to choose a plan which is healthy and does not have any negative effects. Other problem with most diet plans is that they are boring and monotonous. A few days into the plan and you start to crave for something better. This is also one of the reasons that most people give up on their diet plans. Extreme diet plan do have their problems which can play with your hormonal balances and nutrition. A lot of diet plans reduce your testosterone and increase estrogen levels. This is why you should choose your plans carefully.the renegade diet

When you are eating to get ripped either you lose muscle when you are trying to get lean or you tend to gain fat when you are bulking up. And such diets are pretty extreme which are quite tough to follow. This is how traditional bodybuilders do their plans.

Lose Fat and Gain Muscle With Easy To Follow Diets

New scientific methods say that you can gain muscle and lose fat at the same time if you plan them right. So your diets can be very healthy and easy to follow. This is also the premise of Renegade Diet. Renegade diet is a combination of fasting and eating techniques which help you to improve your metabolism and have a healthy digestive system. Controlled fasting can help your liver, detox your body and reduce stress on your digestive system.

Enjoy Your Gains and Maintain a Healthy Body With High Energy Levels

Having a good physique is not a destination but a journey which you should enjoy at every step. The feeling of having a fit shapely body and good energy is unmatched by anything else.

With renegade diet program, you learn to use food to your advantage and have a healthy lifestyle and have more energy to do the things you want. When you have a healthy body, your focus and attention levels also go up which can mean more productivity for you.

This is an easy to follow system which can be followed by anyone who is looking forward to getting ripped without losing muscle and gaining fat.

Schwinn 430 Elliptical Trainer Review

Schwinn is a name well known for its quality fitness equipment. The company has more than 100 years of experience in this industry and they make all sorts of equipment like cycles, elliptical trainers and treadmills.

Schwinn 430 elliptical trainer is a reliable front wheel drive machine which enjoys a very good rating in its class. Anyone who is looking for a low impact workout can easily use this machine irrespective of the fitness level. The machine can easily give you a good cardiovascular session with a combination of upper and lower body movements. People who have bad joints should be able to use this comfortably.

One of the main features of 430 is that it has 20 levels of magnetic ECB resistance (Eddy Current Brake). The technology gives it reliability, quiet motion, no friction and no maintenance costs. This is one of the best form of resistance for such machines and is usually found on high end or premium equipment.

Schwinn 430 Elliptical Machine
List Price: $999.00
Price: $579.99
You Save: $419.01

Here are some of the other features you should know about.

  • Features Precision Path™ comfortable and natural 20-inch elliptical stride.
  • Grip heart rate monitoring on handlebars provides your cardio progress on the LCD screen.
  • 22 workout programs:
    • Profile: 9 preset
    • Heart rate: 8 (4 beginner + 4 advanced),
    • Other: (4 beginner + 4 advanced + Custom).
  • Water bottle holder.
  • Transport wheels to move your Elliptical Trainer.
  • Features a 3 speed fan for cooling, and a sound system with speakers for your entertainment.
  • USB charging for your iPad, Tablet, or other device.
    2 user capability.
  • 10 degree manual ramp with 6 positions.

Another cool feature which you can use is the connectivity apps like Schwinn Connect and MyFitnessPal to help you in tracking your progress. This is good to know about your fitness goals and keep a track of them.

The trainer in itself is pretty quiet and smooth so you can enjoy your workout without much fuss. It is easy to put together and assemble as it comes almost fully assembled. You can get one running easily in under an hour.

With a good price, this gives you a very good value for your money. So if you are looking forward to buy something sturdy for your home use, this can be your best choice.

Stamina 55-1610 InMotion E1000 Elliptical Trainer

This is a very portable machine and a perfect choice if you are looking for a good space saving fitness equipment for yourself. It gives you all the benefits of non-impact exercises without taking too much of your space. You can use this trainer at your home or even your office.

Here are some of the features / benefits you can consider –

  • The trainer comes with an electronic monitor for a record of time and calories burned.
  • Its non-slip pedals ensure a safe workout
  • It can hold up to 180 pounds which is decent when you consider the size.
  • Its cheap
  • Its small size makes it easy to carry around and store away.
  • No handlebars can help you improve on your balance and strengthen your core.
  • No Noise during motion

However it also has some disadvantages which you should know –

  • Stride length for the trainer is quite short which is good for short people. If you have a good height you may find it a bit awkward to use it.
  • There are no handlebars for support or balance so you have to be careful with it
  • It also has a very limited motion range

The In motion trainer is good only if you want good portability and cheap price. For the given price, this is a very good product and does its job well.

You can get cheapest prices for Stamina InMotion Trainer at Amazon here

Concept 2 Model D Rower with PM5

Concept 2 Model D is one of the bestselling rowing machines in the world and amongst top rated equipment. It is used by professionals and is well recognized by competitive rowers. It gives you a very good smooth movement for an effective cardiovascular workout.  Model D is quite a durable machine and this can easily last you for a couple of years.  You can use it for heavy training all day long. This is a very stable and safe machine designed for professional use.

This rowing machine offers you a full body workout which is low impact. This is ideal for people who are looking have problems with joints.

A nice well lit performance monitor PM5 enables you to keep a track of all the essential parameters while you are working out. The monitor has an adjustable arm so that you can use it as you want.  PM5 uses a USB stick to store all the logs of your workout so you don’t need a log card to do this. It can also connect to custom compatible software like RowPro. You can save data on every stroke and compare it to previous ones. One more benefit is that you can use eternal heart rate monitors with this. For eg – Polar H7.

A lever acts as a damper for the movement to make you feel that you are rowing on water with some resistance. The resistance can be adjusted according to the power of the user. A bodybuilder can use it as effectively as an old person. So essentially, the harder you pull, the more resistance you will feel as resistance is generated by a spinning flywheel.

One of the best things about this machine is that it is easy to move and store away.  You don’t really have to take it apart for storage. its easy to stand it up as well, if you don’t have a lot of movement near it or you may risk knocking it off. If you have to put it aside, it comes apart neatly in two pieces.

A 14 inch seat height is perfect for most individuals. However if you want something up higher you can go for a 20 inch height with model E.

If you want a good stable rower which gives you a solid performance and durability, this is the machine you should be looking for.

You can find more details about it and get one at Amazon.com.

Concept 2 Rowers For Sale

About Concept 2 Rowing Machines

Concept 2 is a brand which is well recognized for its quality fitness equipment. Their indoor rowers are probably one of the best available equipment anywhere, which also explains for their worldwide popularity. If you are looking for a good quality indoor rower, you just cannot miss a concept 2 machine.
Now they have many good models to choose from. We will be reviewing some of the best ones

Concept 2 Model D with PM5

This is one of the most popular models offered by the company. With this, you get a very good movement and an effective workout. This is an easy to set up machine which is compact in size and has a good design.

Its well-designed handles, adjustable foot rests along with a flywheel design ensures that you get a good smooth movements and no extra noise. The model D also features a 14’seat height with a smooth sliding motion without any jerks. All this also mean that you can enjoy a machine which is easy and efficient for home use.

If you are short on space, you can also store it neatly. It is easy to move with its wheels so you can just move it out of your room if you need that extra space. The rower combines the exercises for back and legs for a full body workout.

You can also adjust the resistance of the flywheel according to your workout goals. So anyone can use the machine irrespective of their fitness levels.

concept 2 model d

Get The Best Price On Concept 2 Model D Here

Here are some of the specifications for the rower

  • Made in the USA
  • Includes PM5 Performance Monitor**
  • Flywheel design for smooth feel, minimal noise
  • Spiral Damper with adjustable 1-10 settings
  • Ergonomic handle promotes natural arm and hand position.
  • 14” Seat moves smoothly on aluminum rail / stainless steel track
  • Adjustable monitor arm and simple two-part separation for compact storage
  • Flex foot footrests adjust for quick and easy sizing
  • Easy assembly with tools and illustrated instructions included
  • Caster wheels for mobility
  • Color: Black with matte finish (also available in Grey)

Display and conectivity –

The Performance Monitor 5 gives you all your essential parameters in a nice display. You can track data like speed, distance, pace, calories burned etc. A backlit display turns on automatically when you start your workout which makes it user friendly and easy to read. You can also connect your USB drive for your performance data transfers. You can also make use of its Bluetooth connectivity with other heart rate monitors.

This can be very useful when you are working out as this helps you to track your performance and improve on it. This is how you know about your progress.

Here is another popular model by concept

Concept 2 Model E

Model E is a very similar machine and this is also a very popular model from the company. The main difference is the frame height which is 20 inches. A higher frame is much easier for people who have problem with their knees and joints.

So if you have problem in getting up or down from the machine then this is a better choice for you.

concept 2 model e

Get The Best Price On Concept 2 Model E Here

Here is a video which explains the differences.

Exercise | Birth balls during pregnancy and labor – Are they good?

Most of us should have heard about exercise balls or birth balls. Nothing too scientific about them, they are simple balls which are flexible and can withstand pressure. These balls can be really helpful in your pregnancy period, to the extent that they can be used in labor. This may sound surprising but this is true. Here are a few things which you should know about these birth balls.

Safety first..

Birth balls, exercise balls and gym balls are essentially the same thing with different names. A good quality product should be made up from anti burst material so that in case of a puncture they do not burst or cause injury. They just deflate slowly which make them very safe to use. But make sure to get a good quality product. You should not get cheaper or low quality products when it comes to fitness equipment. Some of these balls can also have a non-slip finish so that they can grip the floor nicely.

A birth ball should be able to take your weight comfortably irrespective of your size. Some of the brands can support weights in excess of 300 kg and are pressure tested.

Which one is right for you?

Although you can choose any good ball for yourself but ideally the size should match your height. When you sit on it, your knees should be lower than your hips by about 10 cm. Generally the size varies between 55cm and 65 cm. As stated earlier, make sure you get a good product.

It should be easy to inflate, some of them come with extra stoppers to prevent them from slipping.

Benefits –

These balls are a bit flexible, so they can be used for some gentle exercise. You can also use them for sitting. They are much more comfortable to sit than a sofa or chair. In fact, you can also get ball chairs. They can help you maintain a good sitting posture because your tummy and back muscles have to move to keep you in an upright position. So this can be a fun way to work on your balance or posture.

Now how can you benefit from them during your pregnancy?

First of all, they are gentle to sit on, so you get some low impact, low intensity movement whenever you use them.  You can rock or bounce on them gently which is a kind of a mini workout. Such gentle workouts are good for your abdominal and back muscles especially when your baby is growing. This way you are exercising the supportive muscles in your lower part of back and spine.

You can also use these balls in labor as you can get into different upright positions which are more comfortable than chairs or beds. You can use them while doing any kind of home work in pregnancy which requires sitting for long time.  When you are in a comfortable position, the contraction pain is also reduced to some extent. Getting one for yourself can be really effective during your pregnancy if you use it in the right way.

Precautions –

When you are new to this, make sure you have someone by your side to help you maintain your balance and not let you fall. Many people underestimate the bounce of ball and end up falling off.

You will be surprised, how such simple and easy equipment can help you with your fitness.

Exercise Balls – Benefits and Workouts

Most of us know about exercise balls, they are the big colorful balls we usually see at the gym. You can also have an exercise ball for your workouts at home. For those who are new, they are balls made up of soft elastic filled up with air. You can get them in different sizes. Some people know them by different names such as birth ball (they help in pregnancy), balance ball, medicine balls, Swiss balls, physio ball, therapy ball, stability ball or yoga ball etc. The list of names alone suggest of the kind of uses of this simple exercise equipment.exercise_ball

Benefits of exercise balls

Perhaps the biggest benefit of using them is that our body adapts and adjusts to the movement and instability of the ball as opposed to doing exercise on a stable hard surface. This engages a lot more muscles and gives you a better workout. Moreover it also provides you cushion for some of your workouts.  You can improve your body stability as well as body posture with these balls. A simple isolated exercise can be turned into a whole body workout as you use a lot of smaller muscles to be stable.

  1. Improve core stability – You can improve the core stability of your body with them with exercises which includes abdominal and back muscles. When you have strong core muscles, you can be more effective in your daily activities like bending, lifting, throwing, running etc.
  2. Improve the health of back and spine – As you workout and stretch on the ball, you get a relief from your back and spine problems. This is also the reason why you see them at physiotherapy centers. They are used in a lot of therapies.
  3. Posture Improvement – Strengthening, stretching and exercise of your back and abdominal muscle also mean that you improve your postures. Good postures will keep natural curves of your body and prevent a lot of health problems.
  4. Correction of muscle imbalance – When you just concentrate on one part of a muscle group and ignore the other it causes a muscle imbalance.  Stability exercises on a ball can help you in correcting that muscle imbalance.  For eg – Most people will concentrate on arm and chest exercises more than back and hips which causes an imbalanced growth of muscles.

Sizes

These exercise balls are available in different sizes, you can choose your size according to the exercises, your comfort level and space.  Most common sizes are 45cm, 55cm, 65cm, 75cm and 85cm in diameter.

t1

Workouts and exercises

There are a lot of different workouts and exercises which can be done on a ball. These can range from stretching to weight training. Now what kind of exercise you choose depends on the kind of fitness goals you have. Here are some of the good exercises which can be followed.

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/core-strength/SM00046

http://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/features/10-fun-moves-to-reshape-your-body-with-exercise-ball-workout

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W9kd6G2rLlM

Use in pregnancy

Exercise balls are also effective in pregnancy when you need gentle non impact but effective workouts. They are also used to induce labor and sometimes they are used as chair in pregnancy.  They are also known as birth balls because of this.

Ball chairs

Another popular use of these balls is as a ergonomic chair. You can use them as desk chairs or even chairs in your office. There are mixed opinions on this as there have been studies which don’t really find any benefits with ball chairs.

So if you are looking for cheap and versatile equipment at home which can be used by everyone for different uses then this could easily be the one.  Most of the workouts can be done without any additional equipment.

Best Compact Elliptical Trainer Review

An elliptical trainer can be a really good machine if you want to do some cardio and this is especially true for people who cannot do high impact exercises like running or jogging. Some of the benefits of elliptical trainers are given in my older post.

But what if you want some of the benefits of an elliptical trainer without all the size and bulk? Usually gym and exercise equipment are bulky and they need a lot of space if you want them at home. For such situations you can have compact elliptical trainers.

Compact elliptical trainers are light and compact so you can use them at home or office. They are neat little machines which can give you a work out. You get the same smooth elliptical motion with resistance. One of the very popular machines is Stamina in-motion compact elliptical trainer by Stamina.

Stamina 55-1610 InMotion  E1000 Elliptical Trainer

Here are some of the features of  this machine which is an excellent trainer if you are looking for space saving machine. It is a very simple machine which is designed in a way that it does nt take up much space and give you all the benefits of a non impact exercise.

  1. It is a compact and light weight trainer which can be used easily in your home or even your office.
  2. This comes with an electronic monitor for a record of time and calories burned.
  3. Its non slip pedals ensure a safe workout.

You can use the foot pedals in reverse motion as well and the intensity levels of your exercise can also be changed.

If you do not have the space for a full sized elliptical trainer or if you want a non impact exercise machine which is easy on your pocket, this is a good option. Read full review here,