March 5, 2014
by LifeSpan
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Your Resting Heart Rate: What Is Normal and Healthy?

heart stethoscopeThere’s quite a bit of emphasis placed on cardiac health and the dangers of a poor heart condition. A rather simple way to discern the healthiness of your heart is by analyzing your resting heart rate, or your RHR. A little bit of knowledge now could be a difference maker in the future! Please take a few moments to read the treasure trove of information below.

Heart rate refers to the speed at which your heart is beating, or in other words, the number of heartbeats expressed as beats per minute (bpm). Your heart rate varies depending on your body’s physical needs at any given moment, and in response to other factors in your life.

Factors that can influence heart rate include:

  • Activity level (sleeping, resting, exercise)
  • Fitness level
  • Air temperature
  • Body position (standing up or lying down)
  • Emotions and stress levels
  • Body size
  • Medications
  • Food and drink
  • Illness

Your resting heart rate (RHR) is a simple, easy-to-measure indicator of your cardiovascular health. A healthy heart that is in good shape doesn’t have to beat as often to pump blood to the body. A healthy heart is strong and more efficient, pumping more blood at a higher rate while efficiently circulating oxygen throughout your body. Be aware, however, that a RHR that is too low and is not a result of achieving a high level of fitness can mean that the heart’s natural pacemaker is not working correctly.

Measurement of your RHR is simple and can be accomplished by everyone. To calculate your RHR, find a seat in a comfortable environment and allow yourself to relax. Stay seated and as motionless as possible for 5-10 minutes, allowing your body to rest. Once sufficient time has passed, locate your radial artery, or the pulse on the underside of your wrist by gently applying pressure with your index and middle fingers. Using a watch with a second hand or a digital stop watch, count how many beats you feel for ten seconds. Repeat this calculation two or three times and find your average number. Multiply this number by six to achieve your RHR. For example, if you count 12 beats in ten seconds, your RHR would be 72 BPM (12 x 6 = 72). To learn more on measuring your RHR, click here.

Be sure to regularly check your heart rate as your heart rate does fluctuate based on the factors previously mentioned.  Routinely checking your RHR and recording your results in your “Health Metrics” log in the LifeSpan Fitness Club will enable you to see your true RHR over time, ensuring you are maintaining a healthy RHR.

The chart below shows the normal range for a RHR according to age or physical condition. Remember, many things can cause changes in your normal heart rate including your age, activity level, and the time of day.

 

Resting Heart Rate

Age or fitness level Beats per minute (bpm)
Children ages 11 to 17: 60-100
Adults: 60-100
Well-conditioned athletes: 40-60

 

How the LifeSpan Fitness Club Can Help

The LifeSpan Fitness Club lets you track and monitor your exercise/physical activity and all your health metrics such as blood pressure, weight, and RHR. Activity such as minutes exercised, calories burned, and steps taken can be uploaded to your account with an interactive LifeSpan product via a USB, Bluetooth-enabled equipment or through manual entry.

Logging your RHR into the LifeSpan Fitness Club will allow you to see changes in your heart rate as you improve your fitness level and log your exercise. Appropriate physical activity can improve your cardiac condition, making your heart stronger and more efficient both during exercise and at rest.

lifespan_fitness_club_health_metrics_report

Summary

Remember, regular exercise, sitting less, moving more and a balanced diet are the most effective ways to improve your health and your RHR. What is your RHR?

Here’s to happy heart health!

 

February 28, 2014
by LifeSpan
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5 Healthy Foods You SHOULD Be Eating? Basic Nutritional Guidelines

green and red healthy foodAre you constantly confused about what you should be eating? The answer is probably “yes” as nutritional and dietary advice always seems to be changing. However, there are some basic nutritional concepts that you should know that will help you plan meals and snacks throughout the day—both for you and your entire family. And, do you have to stop eating a chocolate chip cookie on occasion? No! Learning these basic nutritional concepts helps you understand that it is okay to include special treats as part of your dietary circle of health and enjoy a variety of foods during the week.

What do you need to know about nutrition? Here are the basics:

Food Groups: Foods are grouped together based on similar nutritional properties so it is important to understand what the groups are and what is included in each one. The basic food groups for a healthy diet include vegetables, fruits, grains, dairy, and protein. “Eat your fruits and vegetables.” Heard that before? Of course you have, and it is excellent advice—your mother really was right.

Water:  Most people don’t drink enough water every day, but everyone should make an effort to do so. Water is essential for the body because it is in every cell, tissue, and organ, and it helps you stay hydrated particularly during prolonged physical activity or in hot weather.

Dietary Fat: Total fat intake should be between 20 and 35 percent of your total calories each day. Some fats are better for you than others and it is important to know the difference between Trans fats, saturated fats, polyunsaturated, and monounsaturated fats.

Carbohydrates: Carbohydrates are a major source of energy for the body and should be the major food source each day. Learn how the right carbohydrates fuel the system and contribute to overall health.

Protein: Protein intake should be between 10 and 35 percent of your daily calories. Most people eat more protein than they need each day, so it is wise to understand this food group and monitor your daily protein intake.

Want more information on your weight? Use the LifeSpan Calorie Calculator to determine how many calories your body needs in a day to maintain your current weight or make changes if you so desire. Based on the results you can adjust your eating pattern and physical activity levels as needed. Remember, eat healthy, and be active 365 days of the year!

February 14, 2014
by LifeSpan
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Gym Source: Why it Pays to Belong to the LifeSpan Fitness Club

Recently LifeSpan asked some of our retailers why they feel the LifeSpan Fitness Club is so important. This was Gym Sources reply:

Here at Gym Source, we like to think of ourselves as more than just a place to find the best gym equipment, but also a place where our clients and individual customers can glean information and wisdom about cardio training, strength training, and a healthy lifestyle overall.

Recently, we’ve been talking more and more about the LifeSpan Fitness Club, because we believe it’s a great resource for our clients.

The LifeSpan Fitness Club

There are several aspects of the LifeSpan Fitness Club (LFC) that are pure genius:

Exercise Tracking: You can easily track all activity in your LFC online account. Consistently stay on top of your effort, regardless of your chosen exercise type.  Track the number of steps you’ve taken, days you’ve hit the gym for resistance exercise, or gone to yoga to improve your balance and flexibility.

Goal Tracking: The tracking aspect of the LFC is amazing. It’s intuitive, effective, and makes keeping track of your fitness progress clear and simple. In our experience, nothing motivates clients to stick with a new exercise regimen more than seeing results. Seeing results reinforces new behaviors and encourages better ones with real data—not vague assumptions.

Social Motivation: By far one of the great innovations of the LFC is the social aspect of ‘Teams.’ Building a team with other users brings a social aspect to fitness that is sometimes lacking. How many times have you gone to a gym and seen a hundred people working out together, but alone? The Teams feature of the LFC gives people the opportunity to have a support group that’s right there with them every step of the way.

Customized Workouts: Another amazing aspect of the LFC is its ability to give members fully custom workouts based on not just their preferences, but on their past performance. This can’t be understated, really, as it gives members a control over their own exercise regimen and lifestyle.

The LifeSpan Fitness Club—A Terrific Return on Investment

Above all else, the LifeSpan Fitness Club is an incredible value. You get a truly full membership in the club, with full access to all the tools and resources it offers. What’s more, you get a community of fitness enthusiasts and experts who can support your fitness journey every step of the way.

February 10, 2014
by LifeSpan
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The LifeSpan Fitness Club Weighs In On Body Mass Index (BMI)

What is Body Mass Index (BMI)?

Body mass index (BMI) is a number calculated from a person’s height and weight. Healthcare providers and fitness professionals commonly use BMI as a screening tool to identify possible weight problems. According to the BMI weight status categories, anyone with a BMI over 25.0 is overweight and anyone with a BMI over 30.0 is obese.

apple_tape_measure

It is important to understand that BMI is not a direct measure of body fat and that the calculation of BMI uses an individual’s weight, which includes both muscle and fat. As a result, some individuals may have a high BMI but not have a high percentage of body fat. For example, highly trained athletes may have a high BMI because of increased muscle mass rather than having a high BMI due to excess body fat. Although some people with a BMI in the overweight range (from 25.0 to 29.9) may not have excess body fat, most people with a BMI in the obese range (equal to or greater than 30.0) do have excess body fat and need to work to improve their overall body composition. If you have a high BMI and you have chronic disease risk factors such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol, you are at a much greater risk of developing a chronic disease than someone who has a normal BMI of 18.5 to 24.9.

bmi-chartCalculating BMI is an easy method for population assessment of obesity. Because the calculation requires only height and weight, it is inexpensive and easy for clinicians and for the general public to use. The use of BMI allows people to compare their own weight status to the general population.

Is It Important to Know Your BMI?

Yes, but it should be used in conjunction with other Health Metrics such as blood pressure, cholesterol, and lifestyle activities to determine a person’s health status. BMI is a screening tool to identify possible weight problems in adults. BMI is not a diagnostic tool. For example, a person may have a high BMI, but to determine if excess weight is a health risk, a healthcare provider would need to perform additional assessments. These assessments might include skinfold thickness measurements, evaluations of diet, physical activity, family history, and other appropriate health screenings.

There have been discussions recently regarding the use of BMI to assess a person’s health. As mentioned, the measure is quite useful across large populations and it is simple to measure in a variety of settings. Bottom line? When your BMI is calculated, discuss the results with a healthcare provider or fitness professional. Ask how the number impacts you personally as an individual in conjunction with other aspects of your health status.

How can you control your Body Mass Index and improve your value?

Healthy Diet

Want to lower a high BMI? Eat a healthy diet, limit fast food intake, cut back on sugars and sweets, and eat more fruits and vegetables. Mediterranean-style diets may be effective. Eating a Mediterranean-style diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables and that is low in saturated fat but has a moderate amount of unsaturated fat is beneficial. And, be careful of diet sodas!

Exercise / Physical Activity

Exercise is lifestyle medicine and doesn’t cost anything other than the time it takes to add the routine to your day. The American Heart Association recommends that a person gets at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise, 75 minutes of vigorous exercise, or a combination of both each week. The goal is to achieve at least 30 minutes of aerobic activity most days of the week. If a person cannot set aside that much time at once, shorter bursts of activity count too. Breaking up the workout into three 10-minute sessions of aerobic exercise will provide the same benefit as one 30-minute session. So, move more and sit less. Good advice for everyone!

How the LifeSpan Fitness Club Can Help

The LifeSpan Fitness Club lets you track and monitor your exercise/physical activity and health metrics. Activity can be uploaded to your account with an interactive LifeSpan product via a USB, Bluetooth-enabled equipment or through manual entry.

lfc-health-metric-summary-report

Based on the LifeSpan Fitness Club’s calculation of you BMI, a calculation determined by your most up-to-date entered weight, you can visually see how a change in activity or diet affects your BMI. Helping you make sense of your values, Your account will also let you know if your BMI, or any other health metric value, is considered to fall within the normal, caution or high-risk range.

Summary

Remember, BMI is not an indicator of body composition, i.e., fat and muscle. However, if you have a high BMI and have chronic disease risk factors such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol, you are at a much greater risk of developing a chronic disease than someone that has a normal BMI of 18.5 to 24.9. Because excess weight has numerous consequences for the heart and body, it is crucial to maintain a healthy weight based on current guidelines. Regular exercise, sitting less and moving more, and a balanced diet are the most effective ways to lose weight and prevent weight gain.

January 22, 2014
by LifeSpan
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Why the LifeSpan Treadmill Desk Matters to Gym Source

We asked our retailer Gym Source why the LifeSpan Treadmill Desks are so important to their business. This was their response:

gymsourcelogoHere at Gym Source, we know that our business is to help our clients improve their physical fitness from any location: At home, the training studio, the gym, and more than ever—the workplace.

Much has been published recently about the long-term health hazards of sitting for prolonged periods at work. Not only does prolonged sitting been linked to a host of health problems like obesity, cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome (excess body fat around the waist, high blood sugar, increased blood pressure, and abnormal cholesterol levels), and even cancer, but it’s also been demonstrated that people who spend four or more hours seated daily in front of had a 125% greater chance of chest pains (angina) or heart attacks.

That’s why we know the Treadmill Desk from LifeSpan is such an important technology to share in our showrooms. In this digital age of desks and computers, where extended sitting stints are part of everyday life for many, Treadmill Desk technology has the power to help our society transition toward healthier workplace habits.

The LifeSpan Treadmill Desk

LifeSpan_TR5000-DT7_Treadmill_Desk

The LifeSpan Treadmill Desk goes above and beyond our tough standards for quality control. With a 1 inch reversible commercial grade deck with a full 2.5mm thick belt—all set on a rigid steel frame—it’s designed for intense use, even by multiple users of varying size. What’s more, all available models (the TR1200-DT5, the TR1200-DT7, the TR5000-DT5, and the TR5000-DT7) come standard with LifeSpan’s trademarked Intelli-Guard™ automatic belt-stopping system and Intelli-Step™ tracking system.

Moreover, Treadmill Desk is Bluetooth-enabled to wirelessly sync and share your walking data to your computer. Track your steps taken, walking time, calories burned, distance traveled all from your computer as you walk. Once complete, sync your data directly to your LifeSpan Fitness Club account online.

In addition to being featured on primetime TV and WIRED, Popular Mechanics and Smart Money magazines, the Treadmill Desk was named one of PC Magazine’s Coolest Gadgets of 2013. Maybe it’s because the Treadmill Desk is the ideal combination of superior engineering and effective design. Maybe it’s because the product is an easy, affordable way to stay fit and stay productive simultaneously. Maybe because it’s because the Treadmill Desk is just plain cool.

The Treadmill Desk does take a little getting used to; you have to find the perfect desk height and the perfect speed and pace of the treadmill to allow for working and walking comfortably. But LifeSpan makes it easy with fully adjustable desks and a wide range of treadmill settings that are easy to configure.

For the easiest way to add fitness to your workplace routine, try the LifeSpan Treadmill Desk, always available online or at your local Gym Source.

January 14, 2014
by LifeSpan
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Reaching Your New Year’s “Resolutions” Every Day with a Treadmill Desk

How are your 2014 New Year’s Resolutions going so far? Having challenges reaching each day’s activity goals? How can LifeSpan Workplace Solutions™ help you meet these goals?

It is not easy to get to meet your daily walking goal every day, or even every other day. Fortunately there are solutions available to help you stay active whether at home or in the office. Most everyone has activities during their workday that can easily be performed while walking. Phone calls, email, reading, and watching television are easy places to start. You will find that getting 10,000 steps a day, the daily recommended amount, is easier than you think just by adding a Treadmill Desk into your office or home.

  • The modular design lets you add our ConfigureDesks to our adjustable height desk options. These ConfigureDesks can be used to couple Treadmill Desks and Bike Desks together as integrated products for common areas and other multi-user settings creating an office designed for both sitting and walking. All modular desks can be installed on either the left or right side .
  • All Treadmill Desks are designed to operate quietly and reliably in a home or office environment.
  • LifeSpan understands the importance of safety both at home and in the workplace making it a top priority in the design of every product. Little things like interlocking the desks with the treadmills help ensure stability, and limiting the maximum speed to 4 MPH (the maximum speed can be user adjusted down to 2 MPH if desired). Beyond the basics, there is a proprietary feature “Intelli-Guard” on all treadmills. This feature recognizes when you stop walking and automatically “pauses” the treadmill belt to ensure that you cannot step back on without recognizing the belt is moving.

Whether you are working from a home office or in an office building down the street, or just want to have the ability to increase your daily activity level in general, LifeSpan Workplace Solutions™ can help you. The entire line is designed to bring physical activity back into your life with safe, quiet, and reliable products that are proven effective to improve your health each and every day of the year.

January 4, 2014
by LifeSpan
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Gym Source Staff Picks: Our Favorite LifeSpan Technology

We asked our retailer Gym Source what their staff would pick as their top LifeSpan product and feature. This was their response:

Here at Gym Source, we stay in close touch with our customers—from individuals setting up their home gym for the first time, to commercial facilities seeking the best equipment available for a range of users.

That’s why we love selling fitness technology from LifeSpan. With LifeSpan, our clients get premium technology and a workout experience that’s second-to-none. What’s even better? The innovative technology integrated into every LifeSpan product shows an attention to engineering detail that we—and our clients—appreciate.

Take the TR5000i. As one of the most popular LifeSpan treadmills sold by Gym Source, the TR5000i is prevailing with technology that sets it apart from mass-market treadmills. Some of our favorite features include:

  • The auto-stop feature or “Intelli-Guard”. This feature is completely unique to LifeSpan. Plenty of people with children or pets have praised the exclusively simple idea that if you step off the treadmill to answer the phone or get the door, the belt stops.
  • The USB option. The simple way the TR5000i captures basic body data like heart rate and weight while working out (with the contacts cleverly integrated into the handles) and transfers it onto a USB drive for analysis is genius, and our customers love it.
  • The whisper-quiet operation. The TR5000i is pin-drop quiet when being used, allowing for early-morning or late-night workouts that won’t disturb other members of the household.

Our clients appreciate LifeSpan technology, and so do we. The TR5000i is one of our top-sellers – for obvious reasons! Get to Gym Source, and experience the TR5000i for yourself.

December 27, 2013
by LifeSpan
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Your Blood Pressure: A Personal Priority

LifeSpan BPM1000i Blood Pressure Monitor

Have you had your blood pressure reading taken lately? If not, you should. Blood pressure is an important health metric. Everyone should know their resting blood pressure as high blood pressure is one of the chronic diseases prevalent today and known as the “Silent Killer.” Blood pressure is the measure of the force of blood pushing against blood vessel walls. The heart pumps blood into the arteries (blood vessels), which carry the blood throughout the body. High blood pressure, also called hypertension, is dangerous because it makes the heart work harder to pump blood to the body and contributes to hardening of the arteries and to the development of heart failure. Many people do not know they have high blood pressure and that is why the label “Silent Killer.”

One in 3 adults in this country has high blood pressure and it affects over 78 million people. Only about half of these adults have their blood pressure under control. According to Tom Frieden, MD, MPH, “We are making progress, but not nearly fast enough. Control is now increasing at about 1 percent per year. We need to ramp that up to 5 percent per year. High blood pressure control has to be a priority for every patient at every [physician office] visit.”

The exact causes of high blood pressure are unknown, but several factors and conditions may play a role in its development. These include:

  • Smoking
  • Being overweight or obese
  • Lack of physical activity
  • Too much alcohol consumption (more than 1 to 2 drinks per day)
  • Stress
  • Older age
  • Genetics
  • Family history of high blood pressure

The importance of diet and exercise cannot be overstated. Even if your blood pressure is normal, you should consider making lifestyle modifications in these areas to prevent the future development of high blood pressure and improve your heart health.

Continue Reading →

December 23, 2013
by LifeSpan
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Tips for the Holidays and Every Day of the Year

It is the season of the year when we tend to think more about our health than at any other time. Not only are we trying to stay active and watch what we eat, but we are also contemplating what will be on our list of New Year’s Resolutions going into the next year. In reality, shouldn’t we have a health and fitness program that we aspire to all 365 days of the year? If we did, we could eliminate a lot of stress during this time and focus more on family and friends. However, the truth is that getting through the holidays is stressful. With that in mind here are a few tips and ideas to incorporate into this holiday season and continue into 2014….resolutions to make and keep every day—all 365 of them.

  • Shop for healthy foods. It is more important then ever to stock your kitchen with heart-healthy foods. Have snacks handy such as nuts, dried fruits, apples, and yogurt.
  • Schedule your exercise. Your schedule will be very hectic this holiday season. Schedule your workout just as you would any other appointment to help you stay on track.
  • Try 10-minute mini-workouts during hectic times. If it’s hard to find 30 minutes or more for exercise, try working in 10 minutes at a time throughout your day.
  • Moderation is the key when it comes to healthy eating. Complete denial doesn’t work at any level or any time of the year.
  • Explore fun ways to get the family moving. Get the kids, the pets, the neighbors outside whenever you can and go for a walk or play tag football—anything to be active.
  • At work, sit less and move more. Use the time you are at work to be active and incorporate a variety of tools to get you moving more and sitting less.

“The holidays offer a perfect opportunity for enjoying loved ones, celebrating life, being grateful, and reflecting on what’s important. They are also a time to appreciate the gift of health.” Support health and safety for yourself and others by following the Twelve Days to Health holiday tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

And, want to get the children involved? Use this festive song, sung to the tune of The Twelve Days of Christmas, to help kids learn how to stay safe and healthy this holiday season!

Happy Holidays!

December 17, 2013
by LifeSpan
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Why Gym Source Sells LifeSpan

LifeSpan offers our products in Gym Source stores and online, we asked them recently why they carry our products, this was their response:

gym source logo

At Gym Source, we have no greater commitment than to customer satisfaction. Whether that means helping clients identify the right products to meet their needs, personally delivering their purchase, assembling and installing their equipment perfectly in-home, or servicing it when it needs repair—our job is to help our clients become healthy and happy.

That’s one reason Gym Source proudly sells LifeSpan. Our clients appreciate LifeSpan’s level of quality, innovation and comfort when they experience their machines on our showroom floor, and they ask for them by name. Specifically, many of our clients can’t wait to experience the LifeSpan TR5000-DT5 Treadmill Desk when they walk through our doors. A media hit frequently featured on the likes of the Today Show and NCIS-Los Angeles, LifeSpan has developed a fitness technology that is literally changing the way our culture fits fitness into everyday life. To all of us at Gym Source, that’s a true mark of innovation and success.

Or, take the LifeSpan TR4000i Treadmill. With a 1” reversible commercial grade deck and solid aluminum side rails, this treadmill is built for absolute durability under the toughest workout conditions. Plus, our clients appreciate that they can save their workout data to a USB storage device and upload their data to LifeSpan’s innovative Fitness Club account, which connects them to an entire community of LifeSpan users who motivate them to reach their goals.

What we love most about LifeSpan, however, is the brand’s overall commitment to making a product that works and will stand the test of time. For our team at Gym Source, quality construction and dedicated customer service from LifeSpan means that we can keep the Gym Source promise to care for our customers long-term—and truly be their partners for life.