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4 Easy Ways To Get Toned and Happy

Polly Pitchford - Monday, November 04, 2013

As a motivational speaker on health and wellness I'm always looking for ways to inspire someone into exercising more (or as I like to call it, "Get Up Offa That Thing!").  Since time is precious, it's nice to know that many forms of exercise not only tone muscles and burn excess calories, but they offer added benefits that we may not have realized before!  Check out these 4 fun activities and be thrilled with their BONUS effects!

  1. Yoga - Flattens the Belly - Not only does yoga increase strength by holding the poses and shape long, lean muscles (including abdominals) but;  BONUS #1: The deep breathing curbs the output of cortisol, a stress hormone that promotes belly fat.  BONUS #2: Research shows that just 1 yoga session can increase levels of the calming brain chemical GABA by 27%!
  2. Hiking - Slims Hips - Strolling outside on a trail or hiking path has been shown to burn up to 82% more calories and tone the lower body faster than walking on pavement or a treadmill.  BONUS #1 - Green spaces like a park invoke "soft fascination" - a meditative state that allows the brain to rest and recharge.  BONUS #2 - This effect increases creativity by 50% for a full 24 hours after a trek!
  3. Bouncing - Trims Thighs - Rebounding (jumping on a small trampoline) is 68% better at burning calories than jogging, and engages hamstrings, quadriceps and glutes without putting strain on the hips and knees.  BONUS: The movement stimulates the lymphatic system, which pulls waste from cells. This prevents the toxic buildup that can cause tiredness and weight gain.
  4. Dancing - Lifts the Tush - Dancing moves like squatting, side stepping and hip-swiveling enlist all three gluteal muscles which can perk up your rear view!  BONUS: Dancing shifts the mental focus onto what your body can do rather than how it looks, which helps cultivate body confidence which leads to  a significantly happier outlook!

Now I don't know about you, but I've always loved getting more bang for my buck and that's just what we get when we incorporate these fun fitness moves into our week!  Pick just one and enjoy the BONUS it brings!

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