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Cycling Tips To Help You Ride Like A Pro

Cycling Tips To Help You Ride Like A Pro

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Chef Hayden Groves has cycled all three Grand Tours – here’s what he learned. Tame the hills “It’s about power-to-weight, or watts/kg, here. It’s often best to sit in the saddle spinning at a good cadence – concentrate on a round pedal stroke, pulling up with your clips and changing gear with the gradient. Pull on the bars and get out of the saddle when it gets really steep.” Why it works “If you’re keeping your momentum up, you’ll be at the top before you know it. Position changes let you rest different muscle groups – it’ll improve your whole ride.” Get strong at home “Strength training off the bike can pay dividends – Bulgarian, goblet and split squats are all easy to do at home. You should also work on your core stability throughout the year.” Why it works “Targeting your midsection and legs will keep you strong on the bike and can help prevent injury. Once you’re confident on the bike and happy with your riding position, you can progress to seated ‘over-geared’ reps.” …And in the saddle “For on-the-bike strength training, pick a hill with a steady gradient that would normally take you a minute to climb….

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6 Essential Functional Movements

6 Essential Functional Movements

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Return to your ancestral roots with these six innate movement patterns to improve your functional — and physique — results. The term “functional training” has gotten a bad rap, probably because of an inordinate number of so-called influencers who perform every strength move while standing on one leg wrapped from head to toe in resistance bands while juggling SandBells and reciting the alphabet backward — then broadcast it. While these circus tricks might become the next #bottlecapchallenge, they’re far from fitness and far from functional. Functional-movement patterns fall into six main categories: squat, lunge, hinge, push, pull and carry, with rotation as a bonus pattern that can enhance any of the other six. By its true definition, functional training should prepare you to live your life better; it should enhance and support your everyday movement and activity — walking, stretching, sitting, reaching, exercising — in a sensible and comprehensive way, no matter whether you’re a competitive athlete, travel blogger, soccer mom or all of the above. When all is said and done, functional-movement patterns fall into six categories: squat, lunge, hinge, push, pull and carry, with rotation as a bonus pattern that can be used to enhance any of the other six.  “These are natural movements,” says personal trainer Lalo Zuniga, CFSC 1 and 2. “Toddlers squat, hinge, push and pull — and so…

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hiking

The Ten Essentials: What They Are and Why You Need Them for Every Hike

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The 2,140-acre Monte Sano State Park in Huntsville has long enchanted hikers, campers, and cyclists with its vibrant fall foliage, scenic trails, and resplendent views. Yet a relaxing day at the park can quickly turn sour. A 24-year-old hiker experienced this firsthand in February 2017, when she went missing after hitting the trails at Monte Sano for an afternoon trek. As the sun set and temperatures neared freezing and she still hadn’t returned, her worried boyfriend called the police. Fortunately, local agencies found the missing hiker the following morning; she had a few scrapes and cuts but was otherwise unharmed, according to local media reports. The frightening story had a happy ending, but it underscored how quickly things can go wrong, even in popular parks and on well-trafficked trails. For that reason, it’s important that hikers carry what are known as the Ten Essentials whenever they head outdoors. The Ten Essentials are 10 items that every hiker should bring on every outing, in the event of emergency. The Ten Essentials first appeared in the 1974 book Mountaineering: The Freedom of the Hills and were updated in 2003 to account for technological advances and specific needs. Here, an overview on what…

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6 Stretches to Improve Fascia Elasticity

6 Stretches to Improve Fascia Elasticity

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Improve your performance and prevent injury by focusing on these flexibility highways. In fitness, muscles tend to get all the glory. Not surprising, considering we’re visual creatures, and besides, a well-defined hamstring tie-in looks darn good. But if you want to understand how to move more efficiently, prevent injuries and get stronger, you need to look beyond your glutes — and triceps and biceps and quads — and consider the admittedly less sexy, but equally important counterpart, the fascia. Fascia 411 Fascia is often characterized as the connective tissue that encapsulates your muscles, but its actual function is far more complex.  “Fascia helps mitigate forces on certain parts of the body so there isn’t overuse of muscle tissue in one region and the degradation of tissue in another,” explains Chuck Wolf, MS, FAFS, director of Human Motion Associates in Orlando, Florida. In other words, fascia serves to distribute force throughout the body by reducing it in one area and absorbing it in another, thereby enhancing mobility and preventing injury. After studying the way fascial tissues worked together as the body moved in different planes of motion, Wolf devised the concept of the “flexibility highways.”  Each of these six highways is made…

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Running For Beginners: Free Couch To 5K Plan

Running For Beginners: Free Couch To 5K Plan

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Even if you’ve never run before, follow this straightforward plan for beginners to run 5K without stopping in eight weeks. Running five kilometres without stopping is a great goal to have. It’s a target that only requires a pair of trainers, can be done anywhere and is something that almost anyone can achieve in a couple of months. Along the way you’ll also enjoy clear signs of how much you are improving your fitness, as you find that you’re able to run further every week. It’s true that the first couple of times you run are probably not going to be that enjoyable because your body’s not used to it. But the good news is that your body will adapt in next to no time. This plan builds up the amount of running you do very slowly so your body can acclimatise gradually and you don’t have to worry that your legs will be too stiff to walk the next day. If you keep at it for a couple of months it is absolutely certain – and this is a 100%, take-it-to-the-bank guarantee – that you will start to enjoy running. You might even become addicted. There are lots of…

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The Benefits Of Walking: Nine Reasons To Pound The Pavement

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Walk it off – the weight, that is… A recent survey found that one in five adults in the UK hadn’t walked continuously for more than 20 minutes in the past year. Pretty shocking when you consider walking is not only one of the easiest ways to get active, it’s by far the cheapest. Forget pricy gym memberships and form-fitting Lycra – all you need are comfortable shoes. You don’t need to be scaling mountains or going on all-day hikes to see the benefits either. If you need any more of an incentive to start walking more, sign up for Walk All Over Cancer this March. This fundraising event for Cancer Research UK asks people to commit to hitting an average of 10,000 steps a day for the whole month of March. The best way to do it is to hit the target each day, but don’t worry if you miss a day here and there – you can make it up with a long hike at the weekend. Taking part in Walk All Over Cancer is a great way to raise money for a worthy cause, but it’s not an entirely selfless act – by walking regularly you’ll benefit…

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If You Run, Read This

If You Run, Read This

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Boost your knowledge, improve your technique and get fitter faster with help from the expert contributors to the new book Running Science. Should I breathe through my nose or my mouth? Getting air into the lungs is critical for runners, since it provides oxygen that is essential for energy production. The transport of air into and out of the lungs is known as ventilation and it is controlled by the diaphragm, a layer of muscle underneath the lungs, and the muscles of the rib cage, known as the intercostals. High volumes of air enter the lungs during exercise and this process becomes inefficient if too much resistance is encountered. Scientists have found that when ventilation rates exceed 40 litres of air per minute (they can reach up to 60 when running at high intensity) the route that encounters least resistance is through the mouth. The nose is used but only when small volumes of air are required. Some athletes have used nasal strips to reduce resistance and promote nasal breathing, but research has demonstrated that these strips have little effects on ventilation rates or performance since the nose still offers more resistance than the mouth to incoming and outgoing air….

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A guide to safe outdoor activities during the coronavirus pandemic

A Guide to Safe Outdoor Activities During the Coronavirus Pandemic

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With officials urging us to limit unnecessary travel, many of us might be starting to feel a bit stir crazy. Being outside and in nature is important for dealing with stress and anxiety—the exact emotions in overdrive right now. But is it possible to safely head outdoors without putting your and others’ health at risk? The short answer is yes—we can technically walk, run, and bike alone or with our immediate household without violating social distancing rules. But there’s more to consider before opening the door. Adhere to official guidelines Before you lace up your shoes, check what local health officials are saying for your area. “It’s really important that people understand the situation that they’re in,” says Lisa Miller, epidemiologist at the Colorado School of Public Health. “Understand your own locality and the public health recommendations or public health orders that are in place and abide by those first and foremost.” In some locations with more cases of the virus, access to beaches, parks, and trails is being restricted. Restrictions can be very localized—while the California Coronavirus Response website says that you can still hike and run outside, individual cities and counties in the state are closing outdoor areas…

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12 Tips to be Successful with Work at Home Jobs

12 Tips to be Successful with Work at Home Jobs

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Have you ever considered a work at home career? Do you dream of ditching the commute to work and embracing a life of telecommuting? Work at home jobs are appealing for many reasons, however, if you not careful you could be in for a disappointment. How to Succeed in Working Remotely There are few things as impressive as when you can work from home as a remote employee. You get the benefits of a steady paycheck and the flexibility in working in your home office. But working from home is a privilege that requires additional responsibilities. If done wrong, you could end up getting fired and have a hard time finding a job replacement – unless, of course, you have a killer resume at the ready. You might also unintentionally limit your income and promotions. Let's look at what I've learned working from home, and how you can get the most from being a remote employee. Communication Communication is the undercurrent in working from home successfully. It's kind of like how humans need air to breathe. This idea is true with most jobs but becomes a top priority when working remotely. That's because your primary connection with the company you…

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What’s the difference between surgical masks and KN95 masks?

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What’s the Difference Between Masks? Wearing ANY mask reduces major entry points for airborne illnesses through the nose or mouth. There are different kinds of face masks designed for different tasks. but wearing any mask reduces hand contact with the nose or mouth, the major entry points for the virus into the body. Our N95-type mask is the European CE-certified KN95. This mask style, when properly worn and sealed around the face, provides maximum filtration and protects the wearer from breathing in aerosolized COVID-19 virus droplets. It is about 3x as expensive as a Type II surgical mask. Many people find N95-type masks uncomfortable when worn for long periods of time as they trap heat, and impede breathing since the air is completely filtered through though its thick membrane. Our FDA Certified Type II mask is what many surgeons wear. It is lightweight and provides excellent protection through its triple filtration face barrier. It comfortably wraps around the nose, mouth and under the chin. Unlike a close-fitted KN95 mask, it is not designed to provide an air-tight seal. A Type II mask provides significantly greater virus filtration protection than a simple dust or particle mask, as well as homemade masks….

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