Little Known Tips For Buying Fitness Equipment

home gym equipmentIf you are putting together your own home gym, you may be in the market for a few good pieces of equipment. Buying fitness equipment for home really isn’t that tough.
Even though the hundreds of different types of pieces can make the whole process seem like you’ve been lost in a sort of maze, with a little patience, the process really isn’t that hard. The bargains that you can find make it worth being patient.

Here are 3 good tips that will help you find the best deal on your new fitness equipment.

1. Make sure to look at used equipment.

When you are searching for used equipment Ebay, Craig’s List, any local bulletin boards, even the local newspaper could have great bargains.

Often, people that purchase fitness equipment do not have the drive to continue to use it. Many pieces become a clothes hanger or general catch all in their homes.

Even those that had great intentions and drive when they purchased a specific piece or two many times find that after a few months the equipment simply sits and gathers dust. When they get tired of walking around the piece or running into it, many times, the best solution is to list it for sale.

This equipment, although used, is usually in new or nearly new condition because it was rarely used. They are also normally listed for well below the cost of the equipment if purchased new.

The caution here is to never buy anything over the phone. You want to see the product to know that it is in acceptable condition. The ad may have been posted by a person that randomly buys used equipment specifically to resell.

2. Consider buying commercial equipment.

If you have been a member of the local gym, you may have your heart set on a specific commercial piece. These pieces may be available for purchase directly from the manufacturer.

To get the best price, you will still want to check your used sources. Don’t be surprised if you have to purchase this type of piece at new or closer to new prices.

In addition to the usual “used sources”, for commercial equipment, you may want to watch for closings or scan the bankruptcy listings in your local paper. Unsuccessful businesses may sell their equipment at a bargain while trying to recoup some of their losses. Even though their prices will not be as good as the usual sources, they can still bring a bargain if you want the commercial quality machine.

You could also get lucky and inquire at your local gym. If you catch them when they are ready to upgrade their equipment, you could get lucky enough to get just the pieces that you want. This could get you several pieces from the same place with a bargain price tag.

The caution to consider with this purchase is that the local gym that is doing well will also have well used equipment.
–  You will want to be sure that their equipment has had regular maintenance and is currently in good shape.
–  Also, you want to hand-pick the piece that you want, not just get one from their inventory.

3. Financing
If used equipment is not your first choice for getting the fitness equipment that you have in mind, financing may be the only option available to you.  When deciding to finance a new piece of fitness equipment there are some important factors to keep in mind.

–  Unless a direct purchase from the manufacturer is your only option, shop around for prices. If the manufacturer is your only option, ask if they offer a discount for a cash purchase.

–  Shop for terms. Just because you purchase from your local sporting goods store or the manufacturer, this does NOT mean that they have the best terms for a loan. Often your bank or financial institute can offer you a slightly lower rate if the payment is set up as an automatic payment from your account.

Getting a commitment for financing does not mean that you are obligated to use it. Once you have made your best deal outside the “dealer”, listen to their terms and decide which offer is best for you.


Check out the F4X Workout for a diet and exercise routine that will get you in top physical condition.


Drop A Dress Size

One of the best ways to stay motivated during your weight loss is to drop a dress size quickly. You can do it, but you have to want it. You have to be willing to make the changes to your diet and lifestyle that will get you there quickly.

Even a busy working woman can make small changes that will add up quickly. Make a small change each day and soon you’ll have these key tips to quick weight loss worked into your routine.

Here are some tips to get you started:

Drink Plenty Of Water: Drinking 6 to 8 glasses of water a day has been preached over and over. This is because water helps flush toxins from the body including fat and sodium. Drinking 6 to 8 glasses helps ensure that you have plenty of water in your system to do the job.

It’s also a sure way to help you keep from grabbing drinks with empty calories. Sodas, juice, and alcoholic beverages all add many calories without the benefit of adding any nutrition to your diet.

If you have a tough time getting enough water down, try adding a slice of lemon, a strawberry or other fruit to your drink. You can also try one of the new low calorie drink mixes to add flavor.

Eat Breakfast: Breakfast really is an important meal, especially when dieting. Our bodies are designed for self-preservation. By breakfast time, it has been many hours since you have had anything to eat.

When you start your day without eating, your body is tricked into self-preservation mode. This self-preservation demands that the metabolism be slowed to help conserve energy since you may be starving. Eating something for breakfast stops this natural response and helps keep your metabolism burning calories more efficiently.

This is the same reasoning that calls for a number of smaller meals throughout the day. It keeps the stomach from being empty for extended periods which helps the metabolism run at top notch. Another bonus is that this method helps keep you from feeling hungry, so the smaller meals tend not to be as calorie laden as larger meals.

Eat Your Veggies: Add extra fruits and vegetables to your meals and snacks. These are an excellent way to eat your fill, without adding extra fat or calories. See our article titled How To Lose Weight – Negative Calorie Foods for a discussion about how fruits and vegetables aid in dieting.

When you reach for dressing or a dip, try a low calorie version or make your own using cottage cheese or yogurt. Those creamy dressings taste good, but they really pack on the calories to any meal.

Choose Healthy Snacks: Try to eat a healthy snack every few hours. This will help keep your metabolism burning and help keep you from overeating at mealtimes.

Snacks to consider, along with the list of fruits and vegetables that represent negative calorie foods, include things such as fruit and cheese, peanut butter crackers, even a handful of almonds.

Choosing snacks with protein will help keep you from becoming hungry for longer periods because they have more “staying power”.

Avoid Liquid Calories: As mentioned previously, every time that you reach for a soda, a juice or an alcoholic beverage, you are adding empty calories to your diet. These products taste good, but do nothing for your body.

One 12 oz. can of soda contains an added 150 calories that you will be trying to get rid of. There is no protien or vitamins in any of these products that will be helpful to your diet goals.

Move: While aerobic exercise can burn a good number of calories during a session, there are ways to help burn calories all day.

– If you have a desk job, keep your feet moving. Even rocking your foot back and forth burns energy.
– Stretch often. Stand up every 15 minutes or so, even if leaving the desk is not an option.
– Take frequent bathroom breaks. The walk to the bathroom helps by burning a few extra calories each time. This should be especially easy to do if you are drinking the recommended amount of water.
– Walk at lunchtime. A short walk downstairs and around the building is a great way to burn another few calories.
– Use the stairs. Even if you work on the 28th floor, taking the stairs for one or two flights will not only help burn calories, but it will help tighten your legs and buttocks. Great benefits!

Try making small changes. Add some small step each day or every few days. These changes will not only help with weight loss, but keeping them as part of your lifestyle will help to ensure that you maintain any weight loss that you achieve.

A Few Benefits To These Lifestyle Changes…

– Teaching yourself to move will help to tone up parts of your body and help improve your heart health.
– Drinking plenty of water will help keep your body and skin well hydrated. Hydrated skin lends itself to younger looking skin.
– Eating breakfast will help improve how you feel in the early part of your day.
– More fruits and vegetables will add nutrients to your diet and reduce your need for vitamin pills.
– Healthy, frequent snacks will keep you from overeating and regaining any weight loss that you achieved through dieting.

Staying motivated enough to drop a dress size will help get you through the tough points in your day. Having that one dress size out of the way will make the other pounds seem less daunting.

This article is for informational purposes only. It is not medical advice, nor should it be interpreted as or substituted for medical advice. As always, before to making changes to your physical exercise routine and your diet, you should always consult your personal physician.

Check out the F4X Workout for a diet and exercise routine that will get you in top physical condition.

Easily Fit Exercise Into Your Day

Many of us don’t get enough exercise in our daily lives. We promise ourselves that we will exercise more, without any notion of how we will manage to fit it into our daily routines. We know that we can improve our health, our self-image, and our ability to really go out and do the things that we want to do IF we just get a little more exercise.

Adding exercise to your day doesn’t mean that you have to spend hours at the gym, or buy expensive equipment that you won’t use.

The first and easiest tip for adding exercise to your day is this:

Find something that you enjoy doing and get going! This is the easiest way to add exercise to your day since you will really make an effort to do it each day. Since you will be adding something to your day that you enjoy, you will be much more likely to continue to do it.

If you are really overweight, or out of shape, start with something simple. Wiggle your feet around while you are sitting. The longer you can keep it up, the better. Do it as often as possible during the day.

It sounds funny, but if you usually sit still, this added motion can help to burn a few additional calories and get your legs and feet much more used to the motion.

Walking is the next easiest exercise. If you have trouble going any distance, walk around the yard as many times as you can. Walk back and forth – look for 4-leaf clover in the yard, check for any spots that may need attention such as dandelions or dips in the ground.

Anything you do to get moving is much better for your health than doing nothing. You can go for a bike ride with the kids, dance while your cleaning, start a garden, or any other activity that you enjoy enough to keep doing.

Scheduling an activity with the kids may make sticking to it easier since they won’t let you off the hook easily.

The second tip is to schedule time during your day for exercise.
Make an appointment for yourself, each day – and KEEP it. By setting aside some “me” time, you will not only start to work on your physical health, but your mental health as well.

Whether you take care of others or not, claiming some time in your day to devote to yourself helps make you feel more worthy and deserving. In fact, if you have trouble deciding to spend the time for yourself each day, you need to remind yourself that YOU ARE WORTH IT!

The third tip is that exercise gives you energy.

Those days that you feel like you just don’t have the energy to exercise are the days that you need it the most.

Push yourself to get started. You may be surprised by how easy it is to actually get through your routine, and by how much energy you have when you’re finished.

Exercise is also a great stress-reliever. After a hard day at the office, it may be just the thing to help you unwind and ready to enjoy the evening.
The fourth tip is to vary the routine.

Don’t let your exercise routine get to be dull. If you get bored with you’ll give it up more quickly. There are so many activities that you can do that there is no reason to feel stuck with the same one day in and day out.
The fifth and final tip is to always warm up and cool down.

Warm up your muscles for 5 or 10 minutes before you start any heavy exercise activity to help prevent injury. Your body will be much more prepared for what is coming.

Cooling down allows your muscles to back off slowly rather than to go from “all out” straight to “stop”. This will greatly reduce the chances of cramps if you have been playing sports or any other heavy activity.


The Fat Diminisher


10 Tempting Snack Foods For Losing Weight

Deciding how to lose weight is always a challenge. Since dieting always makes you feel like you are starving, adding snacks to any diet plan is a must for success.

Planning for snacks is not that difficult once you realize that you will need them. The tough part is finding healthy snacks that are tempting and tasty enough to be satisfying.

Here is our list of the top 10 tempting snacks:

Canned tuna or salmon.  This is a low calorie, high protein snack that is both tasty and satisfying. You can eat it right from the can or add a little low fat mayo or salad dressing to add extra flavor.
Cottage cheese.  An excellent snack food. Eat it alone or add some fruit to it to make it more filling. Pineapple makes a nice addition to cottage cheese. Try your favorite fruits or shredded vegetables to find an amazing new treat.

Peanut butter.  This healthy, filling snack can make you feel full for several hours. Spread some on your favorite light bread or use it as a dip for fruits or vegetables. I have always eaten apples and celery with peanut butter. Both are tasty, satisfying snacks. Try your favorites.

Fat-free plain yogurt.  Yogurt is a great snack by itself, or blend in your favorite fruit for your own low fat, tasty snack. There are many other uses that you may never have thought of. It is a great alternative to mayo in some dishes, especially salads. Europeans use yogurt in place of milk for cereal.

Energy bars.  Energy bars have grown in popularity. They contain a limited amount of fats and calories, come in a variety of tasty flavors and are satisfying at the same time. A guilt-free chocolate fix when you need it.

Celery.  Although celery doesn’t sound like a satisfying snack, eating it actually burns more calories than you consume. Dip it in peanut butter, yogurt or your favorite low fat dressing and snack away.

Carrots.  Carrots are another low calories snack. They are also another great source of fiber. Dip them the same way that you do celery and enjoy!

Dried fruit.  A variety bag gives you a nice assortment of snacks. The drying processs does not add anything to the fruit, so it is almost as healthy and nutritious as fresh fruit.

Fat-free Cool Whip.  Cool whip is a great replacement for ice cream. Blend in some fresh or frozen fruit, use it as a dip for your fruits and vegetables, blend in some vanilla or other flavoring and freeze lightly.

Fruit.  Canned or fresh, fruit is another great snack choice. Put your favorite canned fruit in the fridge for several hours or overnight, open it up and snack right from the can. Blend it with or dip it in cool whip, yogurt, or cottage cheese. Make a salad of your favorite fruits. This makes a tasty filling meal or snack.

Be creative and this list of ten snack foods can turn into such a variety that you will be snacking on something different almost daily.

Fresh fruits and vegetables last only a few days. If you buy a lot at any one time, keep out enough for a day or two. Freeze what you will not use in that time and add it to yogurt, cool whip, or eat it as a frozen treat all by itself.

NOTE: This article is not medical advice. It should not be used as or substituted for medical advice from a professional. This article is for informational purposes only.

For an excellent fitness program, check out the F4X Workout. Learn how to really kick start your fitness and weight loss.

8 Common Diet Mistakes

Starting a diet is always an intimidating thing to do. The yo-yo effect that we get, even while dieting, makes it tough to stay motivated with the best intentions. The up and down that we get with every new weight loss program gets discouraging.

As surprising as it may seem, there are a number of common mistakes that we all tend to make when starting a new diet for weight loss. You may or may not make all of these, but chances are that you have probably made several of these same mistakes yourself.

1. Starting a new diet on Monday.

Setting a day to start a diet encourages binge eating prior to that day. The stress of waiting makes it tougher to eat normally since you are anticipating “depriving” yourself.

2. Skipping breakfast.

By the time you wake in the morning, it has been at least 8 hours since you have had anything to eat. Skipping breakfast leaves you hungry and tempted to overeat at morning snack or even lunch time. Eating a good meal in the morning sets you up for a much better day.

3. Overeating one day, then barely eating the next.

By limiting your calorie intake, it is easy to see when you have exceeded you daily intake. It’s tempting to cut calories the day after you binge a bit. The problem with cutting your calories even further is that, once again, it leaves you hungry. This makes you more vulnerable to overeating in the evenings when it is the worst for your diet. Even when you are not on a diet, most of your calories should be consumed in the morning. This gives you all day to burn them off.

4. Disregarding portion size.

Buying foods that are marked diet or low-fat is a good practice. Diet foods are not calorie free. Buying and eating them does not mean that you can eat more. Portion control is still your best method of controlling your calorie intake and the best way of changing the way that you eat once your diet is completed.

5. Using salad as your main meals.

You might think that eating salad as the main meal would be the way to go. Unfortunately, most times what ends up happening is that salad alone is not satisfying enough to keep you from snacking in a few hours. This means that it makes better sense to have salad with your meal and eat a meal that is enough to keep you from snacking.

6. Setting goals to high.

When you start a diet, you have an end goal in mind. We forget that daily and weekly goals are important to help keep us motivated and on track. Be sure to set your short term goals smaller so that you actually have a chance to meet them. Missing even short-term goals can be very discouraging so be reasonable with them.

Once you meet your weekly goal, be sure to set the next one.

7. Not having faith in yourself.

If you think of yourself and believe that you will always be fat, you are convincing yourself of it before you even start. When you feel like you’re doing the right things and still not making any progress, remember that this is normal. Your body is designed for self-preservation, so convincing it to let go takes some doing.

8. Being too embarrassed to go to the gym.

Joining a gym can be one of the best things that you do for yourself. Everyone started somewhere. So, there are some of the “lucky” ones there that never had to struggle with weight. Most of the people that you will meet at the gym started for the same or similar reasons.

Now, you may or may not make these common mistakes. Either way, they are worth taking note of. Before you attempt your next diet, look closely at your routine and see if there are some changes that you can make to help get you to your goal.



Try the F4X System for a diet and exercise system that is designed to help keep you on track with your goals.



Arm Exercises

arm workoutsAs we age, women tend to develop flabby arms. This upper arm sag makes it hard to wear those sleeveless styles with confidence. Arm exercises that work both the front and back of the upper arms will help you get tone arms that will make you proud.

Arm exercises are part of all workout programs. There are specific exercises that focus on the upper arms. These will work the muscle groups in the front and the backs of the arm. These exercises improve not only the appearance of your arms, but your overall strength as well. This is important since we lose our strength slowly over time as we lose our muscle tone.

Exercises for arms can include one or more methods. These methods are resistance training and weight training.

Resistance training is usually weight training, but can use bands instead of free weights. Bands and free weights both are available in different weights or resistance strengths.

Weight training uses free weights. Free weights can be anything from dumbbells or kettle balls to canned goods depending on your budget and your specific routine.

An important point to keep in mind is that those flabby arms that you are trying to correct come directly from the muscles in the back of the arms or the Triceps. This means that your workout routine must include exercises that focus on this area as well.

There are three main muscle sets in the arms.

1. The Biceps are at the front of the upper arm.
2. The Triceps are at the back of the upper arm.
3. The Forearm muscles run from the wrist to the elbow.

Exercises for the arms will include specific exercises for each. To make sure that the Bicep muscles are properly worked, you should vary your grip and width when performing all exercises. This will give the arm a more balanced look.

By focusing on the muscles of the arms, many people miss the point of exercise. Over time, we slow down. This causes all the muscles of the body to become less firm. Exercise, especially resistance training is the best way to keep our bodies healthy.

Workout programs are designed to help you tone your body all over. This is because the best workout programs are based on the understanding that over working any single muscle group is not your best option.

Maintaining your overall health is the best way to keep yourself physically fit. Exercising all of your muscles adds to your overall health in many ways. Your heart and lungs are also muscles and both benefit from any fitness program that you use.

By following a good workout program and properly performing the arm exercises, you will get not only a balanced workout for your upper arms but a leaner, more tone body that will make you want to show it off. You will finally have those firm, tone arms that you can be proud of.



Start using the F4X System today. No longer will you be embarrassed by flabby arms that keep you from wearing your prize tops or waving with your arm held high!


Prepare Yourself For Weight Loss

Among the many challenges of dieting are portion control and convenience.

After a long day at work, a quick pizza or a stop at the local carry out can be very tempting. Try these ideas instead to help you stick with your diet.

Keep in mind that prepared foods can be your friend. Paying extra for the prepared versions may seem like a poor choice, but this can actually be a worthy investment. These shortcuts to preparing your meals can be enough to help keep your diet on track.

Paying the extra for a bag of shredded lettuce, for instance, can make preparing your meal much less stressful. This simple shortcut can save you enough time and energy that fixing a meal instead of buying something off the drive-thru menu doesn’t seem like such a chore. Sometimes, just that little boost can be enough to help keep your diet on track.

Many vegetables come in steam-in bags these days as well. Just pop these into the microwave and your ready to go

With the variety of prepared foods that are available these days the choices for a quick meal or snack become much less limited. There are many more choices available than ever before. Sliced celery and carrot sticks packaged together make an excellent grab-and-go snack.

Fresh fruits mixed together in a cup or individual bags and containers from the snack and cookie aisle can be a perfect size snack. Try sticking with baked or low fat versions for your best options.

By shopping every few days, you will be able to keep a fresh assortment of fruits and vegetables on hand. This will give you a constant source of snack and meal foods.

You will be surprised by the assortment of “quick” meals that you can find when you start looking. In the frozen section, you can find portion sized meals that offer enough variety to satisfy almost anyone. Along with the meals, there are often individually frozen chicken breasts that can be baked, sliced and added to any meal or salad.

Making your diet more convenient from day to day can be enough to help you stick with it. Look around the next time you go to the store and see what additions you can find to make you meals quick and easy.


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Negative Calorie Foods

We have all heard about them, but exactly what are negative calorie foods? Negative calorie foods, if you can believe it, are foods that actually burn more calories than they contain. Use these foods for snacks or even meals and you will literally burn off a few extra calories by eating.

Negative calorie foods are a great boost to a diet. Including them as snacks or as part of a meal is an easy way to help keep your daily calorie intake down.

It is important though that you alternate them with other healthy foods. Improving your health is the goal of any diet plan. A diet consisting of only one or two food groups is not the path to improving your health.

Another great reason not to eat only these foods is that you don’t want to tire of them. You can use these foods as part of your diet even once you reach your weight goals to help maintain your weight.

Carbohydrates are the bodies first source of energy. The next source comes from the fat stores. This is one way to get rid of some excess fat and it is the key to how negative calorie foods can help you lose or maintain your weight.

Negative calorie foods come from fruits and vegetables. They are the foods that require more energy to digest than the calories they provide.

When shopping for vegetables, you should choose the fresh or frozen versions. Canned vegetables contain added sodium which is not your healthiest choice.

When you are planning your weight loss diet, be sure to include some of these foods for added results.

Finally, here is a list of some of these foods.

Hot Chili Peppers
green beans

As you see, the list is quite extensive. Choose those that you enjoy and include some in every meal or snack to get the greatest diet benefit from negative calorie foods.

Celery is worth mentioning because it only holds 10% of the calories required to digest it. The remaining 90% comes from burning calories from the other foods you eat with it, or from fat stores.

This is true for all the foods in the negative calorie list, although not to the same extent. Since they don’t provide enough calories to allow your body to burn them off, you burn calories from other places.

Regular activity is another important key to improving your health and dropping weight. This doesn’t mean that you should rush out and buy a gym membership. Regular activity is just that… regular. That means that 2 or 3 times a week you give up some down time to do something good for yourself.

Walk quickly around the block, go to the mall and walk quickly down and back. Walking the mall will also give you a chance to see when the sales change or just enjoy the window displays; and has the added bonus of keeping you out of the weather!


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Diet and Weight Loss

Are you having trouble staying motivated with your weight loss?

This is an interesting graphic with some tips that may help you. These tips were put together to try and make the challenge of losing weight a little easier.

Winning at Weight Loss

Don’t get discouraged by the idea of dieting. The suggestions made here should be kind of easy to follow. There is no statement saying that you cannot have sugar, or that all of your food should be proteins and “healthy” fats.

Putting into perspective how much you are consuming of each will help you to better balance you diet to allow the weight to come off quicker.

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