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Free consultation

free consultation, fitness, bodybuilding, weightlifting, weightloss, sport, training, workout, diet

Until the end of the month I am offering a free consultation. A 15-minute video call where I will answer all your questions about your workouts and diets.

I´m working on a new service and I think this would be a  good first step to get to know how best to implement the apps I´m going to use in this new service: Calendly and GoToMeeting. So I think this is a win-win situation.

Do you have doubts about which training method is best for you? What are the most effective exercises you could do in the comfort of your home? What kind of diet would best suit your pace of life? What foods are sabotaging your results? I will solve any question you have. Do not hesitate and book your free 15-minute consultation.

I think these apps are really easy to use, but I´d really appreciate your feedback.

On the other hand, my fellow bloggers and friends, if you have no questions but want to talk to me and listen to my sweet voice, it will be my pleasure to chat about whatever you want, after 4 years of blogging. I would like to try this in as many countries and with as many people as possible.

I hope you like this initiative and encourage you to participate. Also, feel free to share with any friend of yours that could benefit from this free consultation.

Thank you so much!

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Plan your workouts like a pro

How to plan your workouts, fitness, cardio, strenght, sport, health
Today I´m going to explain how to plan your workouts like a pro. Planning your training sessions is key to succeed. I bet you´ve heard the famous quote “Failing to plan is planning to fail”. When it comes to fitness plans, “failing” means not meeting your goals and expectations. You have to plan ahead to meet your goals because it takes much more than motivation and goodwill to get there.
 
The technical term for this kind of planning is “periodization”. It is the process of dividing an annual training plan into specific time blocks. Each block has a particular goal. This allows us to create hard training periods and easier periods, to facilitate recovery. Periodization also helps us develop different physiological abilities during various phases of training.
 
Let´s say you have found a workout routine that works well for you. That´s great but, lately, no matter how hard or how often you work out, you just can’t seem to progress any further. You’re stuck on a plateau. This is because your body has adapted to the exercise you’ve been doing. You need to “shock” or “surprise” your body, give it a new challenge periodically if you’re going to continue to make progress. Instead of doing the same routine month after month, you change your training program at regular intervals, “periods”, or “cycles” to keep your body working harder, while still giving it adequate rest. That goes for both strength and cardiovascular training.
How to plan your workouts like a pro, training, workout, progress, success, sport, fitness, weightlifting, bodybuilding, health
The goal with periodization is to maximize your progress while also reducing your risk of injury. It also addresses peak performance for competition or meets. Periodization, if appropriately arranged, can peak the athlete multiple times over a competitive season (Olympic weightlifting, powerlifting, track and field) or optimize an athlete’s performance over an entire competitive season like with soccer or basketball.
 

Periodization cycles are classified by amounts of time: 

 
The macrocycle is the longest, and includes all four stages of a periodized training program: endurance, intensity, competition and recoveryAll 52 weeks of your annual plan. For example, if you want to peak for an event one year from now, you can mark that date on your calendar and work backward to create a program that allows you to peak at that time. You can use the same process to identify several major events throughout the year and develop a plan that facilitates multiple fitness peaks.
 
The mesocycle represents a specific block of training that is designed to accomplish a particular goal.  Mesocycles are typically four or six weeks in length. For instance, during the endurance phase, you might develop a mesocycle designed to enhance your muscular endurance for six weeks.
 
A microcycle is the shortest training cycle, typically lasting a week with the goal of facilitating a focused block of training. Generally speaking, four or six microcycles are tied together to form a mesocycle.  
 
You can get the most out of your training by having a good understanding of each of the three cycles of periodization and then using these cycles to create a plan that allows you to peak for your most important events throughout the year.
For example, you can alter your strength-training program by adjusting the following variables:
  • The number of repetitions per set, or the number of sets of each exercise
  • The amount of resistance used
  • The rest period between sets, exercises or training sessions
  • The order of the exercises, or the types of exercises
  • The speed at which you complete each exercise

There are many different types of periodized strength-training programs, and many are geared to the strength, power and demands of specific sports.

You should also periodize your cardiovascular training for the same reasons: challenge your body while still allowing for adequate recovery time.
 
For example, you’re a recreational runner, running for fitness, fun and the occasional short race, you’ll want to allow for flat, easy runs, as well as some that incorporate hills and others that focus on speed and strength.
What you don’t want to do is complete the same run every time. If you run too easily, and don’t push yourself, you won’t progress. And chances are you’ll get bored. Conversely, too much speed or high-intensity training will lead to injury or burnout, and most likely, disappointing race results.
 
If you want to improve your time in a 10K or completing a half marathon or even a full marathon, you’ll need a periodized program geared to each type of race.
 
Specially designed periodized training programs are also available for cycling and many other sports.
 
Periodized training will ensure that you continue to make measurable progress, which will keep you energized and interested in reaching your goals.
 

Proven benefits of periodization:

  • Management of fatigue, reducing risk of over-training by managing factors such as load, intensity, and recovery
  • The cyclic structure maximizes both general preparation and specific preparation for sport.
  • Ability to optimize performance over a specific period of time
  • Accounting for the individual, including time constraints, training age and status, and environmental factors.

Plan your workouts according to your goals.

There are different types of periodization: 
 

Linear periodization

is the most commonly used style of training. This form of periodization gradually increases volume, intensity, and work by mesocycles in an annual training plan. Progressive overload is a major key to the success of this training style. This style is characterized by longer training periods, less reliance on super compensation, and a focus of more general training over specific.

This programming style is useful for building a strong foundation, progressing in one variable, and working towards a peaking point. Recommended for those who are newer to training, it’s definitely the easiest periodization style to understand.
 

Non-linear/undulated periodization

rely on constant change throughout training cycles. As opposed to a linear periodization that focuses on gradual increase of one variable, this style manipulates multiple variables like exercises, volume, intensity, and training adaptation on a frequent basis (daily, weekly, or even bi-weekly). Non-linear periodization is more advanced than linear and incorporates multiple types of stimuli into a training program.
This programming style is an excellent way of individually training one variable and secondarily training others at the same time. It’s often used for those with advanced training backgrounds and longer sport seasons. For example, think about a program that has you train strength one day, then power two days later – this is non-linear.
 

Block periodization

focuses on breaking down specific training periods into 2-4 week periods. It consists of a two-block design, accumulation and restitution.
In the accumulation blocks, the focus is directed toward supporting motor abilities while simultaneously developing certain strength qualities necessary for the athlete with a limited volume load.
The restitution block is essentially the opposite. They support strength qualities in the athlete, while addressing the development of specific, technical motor qualities with a limited volume load. These training loads must target different abilities (max-strength, explosive strength, max anaerobic power, etc.). 
The goal behind these smaller, specific blocks is to allow an athlete to stay at their peak level longer, since most sports call for multiple peaks. Within the training season, athletes will only focus on adaptations they need specifically for their sport, if an athlete doesn’t need endurance, they won’t train for it.
When trying to maintain a high level of athleticism for competition over an extended amount of time, block periodization can be a great tool. By frequently training specific training adaptations you work towards progressing in your sport with the variable you need, and avoid burning out.
 
Periodization has stood the test of time for the simple fact that there are so many progressions and ways to structure your training so that you can be at your best when it matters most. Failing to utilize any form of periodization for your training could lead to overtraining, failure to recover appropriately for progression, and the inability to see the progress you deserve from the time you put into training.

Help for beginners

To start planning your workouts, here is a linear periodization template, for free.

I know that planning workouts for the first time can be complicated, if you have any questions, do not hesitate to ask me and I will help you.

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Recoup Cold Massage Roller

Recoup Cold Massage Roller

The Recoup Cold Roller provides all the benefits of a traditional Self Myofacial Release (foam rolling) in combination with Cryotherapy (Ice Massage). These two forms of muscle therapy help to decrease inflammation, aid in post workout recovery, and allow specific treatment for areas in need.

By applying the pressure with the cold roller the muscle will release metabolic waste products and toxins which become build up in the muscle after exercising. In addition, Self Myofacial Release impacts the Golgi Tendon Organs and allows the muscle to relax. Once the muscle is relaxed the cold aspect of product allows for a decrease in inflammation.

Product Specs

  • Cold therapy + massage recovery
  • 2 hours in the freezer = 6 hours cold
  • Unscrew blue handle to use ball outside of handle
  • Use anywhere on the body
  • 3.4 oz cooling gel for safe travel
  • Handle free rolling
  • Ball 3.15 in. in diameter (a little larger than a baseball)

Injuries this Treats

  • Shin splints
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Tight IT bands, quads, hamstrings
  • Neck pain
  • Carpal tunnel
  • Back pain

Benefits

  • Takes down inflamation
  • Faster muscle recovery
  • Lowers cell metabolism, saving energy
  • Helps to prevent tissue death
  • Stops pain
  • After muscles warm increasein blood flow
  • Muscle relaxation
  • Improve tissue recovery
  • Impruve neuromuscular efficiency
  • Regulate production of cytokines
  • Flush out lactic acid
  • Decrease muscle soreness

Regular price is 39.99$ 

If you want to get it just for 32.79$ send me an email to info@chape.fitness and I´ll get you the discount. As easy as that!

(US shipping only)

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Muscle Fiber Types

Muscle fibers
Are you a better distance runner or sprinter? Have you ever wondered why is that so?
 
The answer is simple: muscle fibers.
 
Skeletal muscle is composed of different muscle fibers and these are composed of functional units called sarcomeres. Within each sarcomere are the myofibrillar proteins myosin (the thick filament) and actin (the thin filament). The interaction of these 2 myofibrillar proteins allows muscles to contract.. Each myocyte contains many myofibrils, which are strands of proteins (actin and myosin) that can grab on to each other and pull. 
Muscle fibers

Muscle Fiber Types

There are three types of skeletal muscle cells:
Fiber Type
Contraction Speed
Time To Peak Power
Fatigue
Color
Type I (slow twitch)
Slow
100 milliseconds
Slowly
Red
Type IIA (fast twitch oxidative fibres)
Fast
50 milliseconds
Fast
Red
Type IIB (fast twitch glycolytic fibres)
Very Fast
25 milliseconds
Fast
White
  1. Type I fibers are characterized by low force/power/speed production and high endurance, The slow twitch muscle fibers are more efficient at using oxygen to generate more adenosine triphosphate (ATP) fuel for continuous, extended muscle contractions over a long time. They fire more slowly than fast twitch fibers and can go for a long time before they fatigue. Therefore, slow twitch fibers are great at helping athletes run marathons and bicycle for hours.
  2. Type IIB fibers are characterized by high force/power/speed production and low endurance. These fast twitch fibers use anaerobic metabolism to create energy and are the “classic” fast twitch muscle fibers that excel at producing quick, powerful bursts of speed. This muscle fiber has the highest rate of contraction (rapid firing) of all the muscle fiber types, but it also has a faster rate of fatigue and can’t last as long before it needs rest.
  3. Type IIA fall in between the two. These fast twitch muscle fibers are also known as intermediate fast-twitch fibers. They can use both aerobic and anaerobic metabolism almost equally to create energy. In this way, they are a combination of type I and type IIB muscle fibers.
This range of muscle fiber types allows for the wide variety of capabilities that human muscles display. On average, people have about 50 percent slow twitch and 50 percent fast twitch fibers in most of the muscles used for movement.

Motor Units

Muscle fibers are organized into motor units grouped within each muscle. A motor unit is simply a bundle or grouping of muscle fibers. When you want to move, the brain nearly instantaneously sends a signal or impulse through the spinal cord that reaches the motor unit. The impulse then tells that particular motor unit to contract it’s fibers. 
 
The body recruits the lower threshold motor units first (slow-twitch), followed by the higher threshold motor units (fast-twitch) and continues to recruit and fire motor units until you’ve applied enough force to do whatever it is you’re trying to do regarding movement. When you are lifting something extremely heavy or applying a lot of force your body will contract practically all the available motor units for that particular muscle.
Type I muscle motor units contract less forcefully and a little slower then type II motor units and they reach peak power slower. This is why you can sit and eat all day or play Playstation all day and never get tired!
 
The type II motor units are capable of greater levels of absolute force than type I and also fatigue a lot quicker. Type IIA and IIB are capable of roughly the same amount of peak force, but the IIA fibers take longer to reach their peak power in comparison to type IIB.
 
Fast twitch fibers don’t like high volumes or long durations of work. They don’t even like a high frequency of work. If we go back to our ancestral roots, fast twitch IIB fibers were used only in times of stress situations. These would include running away from a predator, fighting, chasing food, or other brief explosive muscle action. They were only active for a few minutes per day at most. Since they weren’t used often the body had no real need to sacrifice them for a more efficient fiber. Sedentary people are the same way and have more fast twitch IIB muscle than athletes as the use of their fibers is limited and there is no need for their bodies to make more efficient adaptations.

Changing size or fiber type composition

Muscle fibers can adapt to changing demands by changing size or fiber type composition. This plasticity serves as the physiologic basis for numerous physical therapy interventions designed to increase a patient’s force development or endurance. There is evidence that muscle fibers not only change in size in response to demands, but they can also convert from one type to another. This plasticity in contractile and metabolic properties in response to training and rehabilitation allows for adaptation to different functional demands.
 
Fiber conversions between type IIB and type IIA are the most common, but type I to type II conversions are possible in cases of severe deconditioning or spinal cord injury.
 
Less evidence exists for the conversion of type II to type I fibers with training or rehabilitation, because only studies that use denervated muscle that is chronically activated with electrical stimulation have consistently demonstrated that such a conversion is possible.
 
Changes in the muscle fiber types are also responsible for some of the loss of function associated with deconditioning.
Some of the loss of muscle performance (decreased force production) due to aging does not appear to be only due to the conversion of muscle fibers from one type to another, but largely due to a selective atrophy of certain populations of muscle fiber types. With aging, there is a progressive loss of muscle mass and maximal oxygen uptake, leading to a reduction in muscle performance and presumably some of the loss of function (decreased ability to perform activities of daily living) seen in elderly people. Age-related loss of muscle mass results primarily from a decrease in the total number of both type I and type II fibers and, secondarily, from a preferential atrophy of type II fibers. Atrophy of type II fibers leads to a larger proportion of slow type muscle mass in aged muscle, as evidenced by slower contraction and relaxation times in older muscle.
 
Fortunately, physical therapy interventions can affect muscle fiber types leading to improvements in muscle performance. Physical therapy interventions can be broadly divided into those designed to increase the patient’s resistance to fatigue and those designed to increase the patient’s force production.
 
Evidence is lacking to demonstrate that type II fibers convert to type I with endurance training, although there does appear to be an increase in the mixed type I and IIA fiber populations. Researchers have found that type I fibers become faster with endurance exercise and slower with deconditioning.
 
High-intensity resistance training (high-load–low-repetition training) results in changes in fiber type similar to those seen with endurance training, although muscle hypertrophy also plays an essential role in producing strength gains. Initial increases in force production with high-intensity resistance training programs are largely mediated by neural factors, rather than visible hypertrophy of muscle fibers, in adults with no pathology or impairments. Even so, changes in muscle proteins, do begin after a few workouts, but visible hypertrophy of muscle fibers is not evident until training is conducted over a longer period of time (>8 weeks).
 
Although the trends in fiber type conversions are similar for endurance training and resistance training, differences in physiological changes that occur with each type of exercise are also important. Endurance training increases the oxidative capacity of muscle, whereas training to increase force production of sufficient intensity and duration promotes hypertrophy of muscle fibers by increasing the volume of contractile proteins in the fibers.

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Healing a rotator cuff injury – Paul´s testimonial

A few months ago Paul contacted me, worried about his rotator injury. Not everyone hires me to lose weight. Today we can say that he is fully recovered. He is not a blogger, but I have asked him to describe his experience to share it with you. Here it is.

“To share my experience is not a compromise, it is a pleasure.

I started young playing sports. Being an athlete is a lifestyle and a philosophy. It´s taking your day as a challenge, seeking to overcome.  My dictionary doesn´t contain the word “surrender”.

After a nasty blow dragged by a wave, I felt some discomfort in my shoulder. At first, I thought it would be temporary. But I was wrong. Months of rest, ice, pills… nothing worked.

After reading Google´s answer, two years without physical exercise, I decided to contact Chape.

To sow hope in the heart of a demoralized is not so easy, so…

I will never forget the first thing Chape told me: You have not an injury, you only have a weak point and you need to strengthen it.

That phrase sums up his philosophy: He does not accept defeat. He knows he is able to accomplish anything with determination and effort.

I followed his routines. First and most difficult, trust him and myself. Once done, I got up from the couch and went to the gym. Tailored exercises allowed me to have fun with the advantage that I was recovering my injury.

After three months, I started to get better. 7 months later my shoulder was stronger than ever. When I’m hanging in a harness, I do not remember which is the injured shoulder. I will never forget the lesson: with effort and faith in ourselves no injury will last forever”.

I want to thank Paul publicly for these nice words about me and tell everyone that, if you need help to recover from an injury, here I am!

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Dumbbell Chest Fly

Talking about isolation exercises, the dumbbell chest fly on a flat bench is key to developing your pectoral muscles. It works mainly the pectoralis minor.

Sit on a flat bench with a dumbbell on each hand resting on top of your thighs. The palms of your hand will be facing each other.

Using your thighs to help raise the dumbbells, lift the dumbbells one at a time so you can hold them in front of you at shoulder width with the palms of your hands facing each other.

Lie on your back with your feet placed firmly on the floor or the bench itself so that you can keep your spine in a neutral position. Pull your shoulder blades down and back so that they make firm contact with the bench. Your head, shoulders, and butt should make contact with the bench throughout the exercise.

Raise the dumbbells up like you’re pressing them, but stop and hold just before you lock out.

Inhale and with a slight bend on your elbows in order to prevent stress at the biceps tendon, lower your arms out at both sides in a wide arc until you feel a stretch on your chest.

Exhale and return your arms up you squeeze your chest muscles. Make sure to use the same arc of motion used to lower the weights.

Hold for a moment at the contracted position and repeat the movement until you complete the set.

Do you want to watch more exercise videos? Subscribe to my YouTube channel.

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The Warm-Up

Hello, dears!

I´ve just found a new video editing app that I think you may like too. It´s Lumen5 and turns your blog post into videos with no effort and lots of fun. You enter the link you want to convert and they find related images and animations. You choose what you like, edit a little bit, add your logo, find music, and ready to download and share!

I started with one of my oldest articles. Never forget the importance of warming up before a workout, match or competition. Btw, do you want to try this app? Visit Lumen5.com :)

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30 Sweet Potato Healthy Recipes

Sweet Potato healthy recipes

Many studies have suggested that increasing consumption of plant foods like sweet potatoes decreases the risk of obesity, diabetes, heart disease and overall mortality while promoting a healthy complexion, increased energy, and overall lower weight.

One medium sweet potato will provide well over 100% of your daily needs for vitamin A, as well as 37% of vitamin C, 16% of vitamin B-6, 10% of pantothenic acid, 15% of potassium and 28% of manganese. You’ll also find small amounts of calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc, vitamin E, thiamin, riboflavin, and folate.

Sweet potatoes are a great source of beta-carotene, a powerful antioxidant known to give orange vegetables and fruits their vibrant color, which is converted to vitamin A in the body. Consuming foods rich in beta-carotene may reduce the risk of developing certain types of cancer, offer protection against asthma and heart disease and delay aging and body degeneration.

Keep the skin on! The color of sweet potato skin can vary from white to yellow, purple or brown but no matter what color it is, make sure you do not peel it off. A sweet potatoes skin contributes significant amounts of fiber, potassium, and quercetin.

I hope you enjoy these healthy recipes!

 

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60 healthy salmon recipes

Salmon healthy recipes

Salmon are considered “anadromous” which means they live in both fresh and salt water. They are born in freshwater where they spend a few months to a few years (depending on the species) before moving out to the ocean. When it’s time to spawn, they head back to freshwater.

Salmon appearance varies greatly from species to species. Species like chum salmon are silvery-blue in color while some have black spots on their sides, like the Atlantic salmon. Still others, like the cherry salmon, have bright red stripes. Most of these species maintain one color when living in fresh water, then change color when they are in salt water.

Salmon is a popular food. Classified as an oily fish, salmon is considered to be healthy due to the fish’s high protein, high omega-3 fatty acids, and high vitamin D.

Fresh or canned, have salmon any night of the week with these easy recipes:

30 healthy salmon recipes

30 healthy canned salmon recipes

 

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30 Healthy Halibut Recipes

Halibut healthy recipes

Atlantic halibut is one of the largest bottom-dwelling flatfish in the world. It is considered very good quality seafood thanks to its firm texture and relatively few bones.
Atlantic halibut is larger than its cousin, Pacific halibut. Both fish taste similar!

The word “halibut” is derived from haly (holy) and butte (flat fish), for its popularity on Catholic holy days.

Halibut are often boiled, deep-fried or grilled while fresh. Smoking is more difficult with halibut meat than it is with salmon, due to its ultra-low fat content. Eaten fresh, the meat has a clean taste and requires little seasoning.

I hope you enjoy these recipes, as usual in a public notebook ;)