Chances are, if you’re a frequent reader of our fitness blog, you’re very familiar with treadmills. You probably have one of your own that you use faithfully, you’ve probably seen every cute cat/dog/parakeet-on-a-treadmill YouTube video, and you most certainly would know all about the history of this glorious fitness machine…right? If not, this is your lucky day—read on to learn more about the world’s first treadmill and some very interesting insights into how far this product has come. Continue reading
As your #1 internet retailer of home fitness equipment, Smooth Fitness is always eager to share with you all the exciting ways you can achieve your own optimal levels of health and wellness. Home exercise encompasses everything from running hard on your Smooth treadmill to squeezing in some quick mat work before heading into the office, so today we’d like to suggest you add one more workout program to your repertoire: a cross training workout.
The benefits of cross training come into play in situations like when you’re in great shape from running three miles a day five times a week for years, but you’re somehow out of breath and covered in sweat after a few minutes of rock climbing. That imbalance springs from a lack of cross workouts, which you’ll find provide you with some of the best full body exercise you’ll ever experience thanks to their ability to build comprehensive fitness and stamina – in addition to introducing you to constantly varied types of activities that add flavor to your daily workout routine.
Based on the concept that constantly varied activity better prepares your body for general fitness, cross training workouts tackle head-on the problem that working out only one set of muscles leaves the others sorely out of shape. Not to mention, mixing it up with cross training helps prevent injury to those oft-used muscle sets by giving them a well-deserved break. Win, win, right?
In a typical cross workout, you’ll use a combination of cardio aerobic activity with fitness accessories like kettle bells and similar workout equipment, in order to challenge your body in unfamiliar ways. One particularly successful cross training method is high-intensity interval training (HIIT), which refers to an enhanced form of interval workouts that alternate periods of short intense activity with recovery breaks in between. As one of the best workouts you’ll find that blends cardio with strengthening, HIIT training not only gets your heart pumping and burns tons of fat, but also improves your overall conditioning for future cross workouts.
Now that you know what it means to cross train and what this kind of workout program can do for your body and health, stay tuned to the Smooth Fitness blog for more info – like how you can use your Smooth fitness accessories to create your own personal cross workout at home!
Who said watching lots of TV means you have to be a couch potato?
One of our favorite things about fitness equipment like Smooth treadmills, elliptical trainers and the all-new SitNCycle is how easily it helps us fit great workouts into our busy lives. There’s nothing like unwinding with a movie and your significant other after a long week at work, and when you exercise at home, you can do just that while still squeezing in your cardio for the day…all at the same time.
Investing in home fitness equipment makes watching TV while staying in shape not only possible, but practically required. What better way to distract yourself from the grueling sweat ahead than by switching on your favorite soap, sitcom, reality show, or drama? With so many popular shows returning bfor the spring/summer season, the team at Smooth Fitness is beyond excited that we’re able to stay up to date on all our guilty pleasures – without the guilt that comes from skipping a workout.
Game of Thrones (HBO): Sunday, March 31 at 9pm E/T
Debuting its third season to a record-breaking 6.7 million viewers, the HBO drama based on George R. R. Martin’s epic fantasy novels has already enjoyed overwhelmingly positive reception from both its international fan base and the critical community. If you haven’t yet entered its morally ambiguous world of social hierarchy, war and politics, there’s no time like the present – this season is expected to be the best yet.
Mad Men (AMC): Sunday, April 7 at 9pm E/T
After premiering with a two-hour “movie” early last month, the sixth season has already thrown plenty of good old-fashioned 1960s drama our way, all wrapped up in a dense and poetic package brimming with humor, sadness, surprise, and characters you love to hate. Rumored to be the second-to-last season of the series, this year’s spring episodes promise plenty of potential for loyal fans and newcomers alike.
So You Think You Can Dance (FOX): Tuesday, May 14 at 8pm E/T
The tenth season will feature big names as guest judges during audition rounds, including Minnie Driver, Stephen “tWitch” Boss, and Adam Shankman. But Nigel Lythgoe and Mary Murphy will return to their traditional seats at the judges’ table for this year’s installment of the interactive reality competition talent show, whose previous winners have included everyone from swing/Latin dancer Benji Schwimmer to ballerinas Eliana Girard and Chehon Wespi-Tschopp.
Arrested Development (Netflix): Sunday, May 26
Despite receiving six Emmy awards and a Golden Globe during its three-season run, not to mention spots on Time Magazine’s “100 Best TV Shows of All-Time” and Entertainment Weekly’s “New TV Classics” lists, the show’s creator Mitchell Hurwitz opted to cancel in 2006. After a seven-year hiatus that dismayed its cult following, the critically acclaimed sitcom will return to fans in an unconventional fourth season on Netflix.
Of course, these are just a few of the gems we’re looking forward to (or already enjoying) for the spring television season this year. What TV shows will you be watching when you hop on your Smooth treadmill, elliptical or stationary bike to exercise at home this May?
It might not feel like spring with all the snow we’ve seen in places like New York over the last couple of weeks. With temperatures in the mid-50s in Washington DC and low 70s in California, however, it does seem like all that wintry weather might finally be behind us. Which means that many of you home fitness enthusiasts are probably considering trading in some of those evenings on the treadmill for mornings on the trails.
The team at Smooth Fitness is just as excited about spring springing as you are. But transitioning from the soft cushion of a treadmill belt to the unforgiving rigidity of concrete can mean harsh consequences for your body and your psyche. Before you hit the pavement, keep a few things in mind:
- Losing momentum: If logging 3 miles on the treadmill feels slightly easier than logging three miles around your neighborhood, that’s because it is. It’s not noticeable enough to detract much from your workout, but by propelling you forward, the treadmill belt does some of the running work for you – and that’s without taking into account factors like hills and wind. So don’t be a hero; start off slow and give yourself time to adjust to running outdoors.
- Problems with pacing: One of the best parts of a treadmill is that it keeps your pace for you. Whether a 5K or a marathon, everyone who’s completed a race knows that pacing is perhaps the most vital aspect of becoming a good runner – and often one of the hardest. Try running with a friend so you can pace each other, or plan a playlist of high-tempo running songs.
- Pavement pains: There’s just no getting around the fact that running on pavement is terrible for your joints, not to mention it makes you more prone to shin splints and muscle cramps. If there’s a shortage of dirt trails around your area, avoid pavement pains by taking a few minutes to walk, warm up your muscles, and stretch them out before you begin running. Stretching cold muscles is useless, so try to make post-run stretching a habit as well.
Of course, if you’re in the market for a new treadmill, warmer weather doesn’t necessarily mean you should put off buying one until November. April is famous for rain showers and other wet weather that’s less than ideal for a jog in the park, and the 100-degree-plus weather of summer isn’t always the most encouraging, either. Stay prepared for whatever the fickle weather throws your way by browsing through our Smooth treadmill selection for the home fitness equipment that keeps you fit, rain or shine!