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Many of us need to shed fat and lose body weight, and the most effective way of doing this is to use up more calories than you consume.
Once you decide to reduce your caloric intake, you become more aware of what you eat, and this can go a long way in settling on the correct diet. Add to it, vigorous exercises, and soon you should be burning all that excess fat around your waistline.
Best Results? Reduce Calories and Exercise
While reducing calories is easier (it just requires a little will power), it is not very easy to all of a sudden start an exercise routine, and more importantly motivate yourself to do it day in day out. But actually, doing both is what good health is all about, and this should be sufficient incentive for you to modify your busy lifestyle so that you can fit in exercising into it.
Exercise can tone up your body and its functions, and moreover give you a better body with muscles in the right places. There are 24 hours in a day, and even if you are spending 10 hours a day commuting and working, 8 hours a day to sleep, you are still left over with 6 hours that are yours to do with as you please.
So, why not find just half an hour to one hour a day for regular exercise. Do this five times a week, and let your body rest for two days and repair the torn muscles that exercising can cause.
My Favorite Exercise Routines & Machine
Exercises can be something as simple as going for long walks at a brisk pace, running, jogging, swimming, playing a sport, jumping on trampolines or getting some gym equipment or visiting a gym. This is a personal choice and you can find your preference only after you have tried out any of them for a while.
Here is where a rowing machine can be an alternative that gives you low impact workouts that can have you burning calories in a short period of time.
You can go to your local gym and see if they have that equipment, or even find some space in your home or yard where you can install a rowing machine.
The Rowing Machine
A rowing machine is an incredible machine that allows you to feel you are rowing on water. If you have access to an actual boat or canoe and a lake or waterbody near you, learn to row, and go out for at least half an hour everyday, and get your rowing done, while you also fill your lungs with nice fresh air over the water.
Unfortunately it is not common to have these facilities conveniently situated, so it is best you go in for the use of rowing machines.
Rowing machines can be those that use hydraulics and work with a piston and cylinder, use a flywheel to create the resistance, magnetic resistance rowers, or water rowers. Hydraulic rowers occupy little space and some of them may use air instead of fluids for the hydraulics.
Flywheel machines are the ones that give you a feeling of actually rowing, and provide a natural smoother and continuous rowing stroke. Magnetic rowers are silent and use a magnetic braking system.
The water rower has a flywheel that has its drag provided by water and emulates the dynamics of a boat moving through water.
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Whichever type of rowing machine you chose, a rowing machine does help in aerobic fitness and the building of a healthy heart.
Which Part of the Body is Exercised Through Rowing
Rowing gives the shoulder muscles and those muscles in your upper and lower back an excellent workout. At every stroke, you are required to activate calves, hamstrings, quadriceps, abs, glutes, pecs, obliques, biceps and triceps, deltoids, lats, and the upper back.
It is estimated that 85 percent of the muscles of the body get a workout during rowing. The motion created by rowing machines is low impact and requires a natural movement.
You are sitting on the machine, close to the floor, and this causes the minimum of stress on any part of the body.
Calorie Burn with Rowing
A good workout of any exercise burns calories. a person who weighs 125 pounds will burn 255 calories in 30 minutes of rowing, 120 calories if walking, 180 calories if skiing downhill, or 240 calories id running at a pace of 12 minute miles.
In addition to just burning calories, rowing simultaneously adds power and strength to you body and as we have said before is an exercise that has a low impact on the body, and this lessens chances of getting injured or stressed.
Every stroke does have a high physical demand on the body. So using a rowing machine for 20 minutes a day can reduce calories by about 200, and if you add to it those that you add by reducing your intake, this loss of calories can go a long way in helping you to burn fat , lose weight and those inches around your waist.
The Anatomy of a Rowing Stroke
Many people feel that rowing mainly exercises the arms, but this is not so. All rowing machines have a sliding seat, and your feet are firmly held in shoes that will prevent them from moving, and as you generate each stroke, your body is carried forward on the sliding seat, add this leaves your legs behind.
The legs do not work alone, as with every stroke the forward movement and your fixed feet result in the knees getting bent. Your back is hinged forward at the hips. You are required to reach out in front of you while you hold on to the handle of the oar.
This is the catch, and from this position, every stroke results in the body being alternatively opened and compressed, taking it from the big muscles to the smaller muscles and then from the smaller muscles to the the big muscles.
At the end of the slide, the legs get straightened, leaving your torso slightly hinged backward, hands are close to the sternum, shoulders retracted and elbows bent.
This is finish, the ending movement, after which the hands move away from the body, trunk tilts forward, and knees bend again to get back to the catch.
It is an intense repeated pattern of physical movement of legs, back and arms and then the arms , back, and legs that is coupled with the whoosh of the machine, or even water if your are using a water rower. For some people, this continuous repetitive movement is almost a form of meditation, that can have a calming influence on the mind.
Starting on a Rowing Machine
Get on to the machine, put your feet into the foot plate and strap them in, and practice a few strokes, while the numbers on the counter change. Get an instructor to take you through the mechanics and anatomy of the stroke, or even join a rowing class where you are taught rowing by experienced instructors.
Do not try to do 20 minutes on your first day. Start out gradually for a few minutes every day, and gradually increase the time you go rowing. You must learn the proper technique for rowing, as you must do with all forms of exercise.
Learn what is the catch and the finish and what each term means, and why it is important to go through each smoothly, without any abrupt jerks or changes of body position or movement.
You can also build muscles through rowing if you convert it into high intensity exercise for 20 seconds at a time followed by 20 seconds of rest. Workout like this for 10 minutes a day, and you will have also built your muscles, besides losing a lot of calories.
Use a Rowing Machine for 20 Minutes a Day
Decide on the goals for losing weight after taking into consideration your body weight, its ideal weight, your general health conditions, and consult a doctor if necessary.
Rowing 20 minutes a day can lead to a loss of anywhere between 200 to 300 calories a day, depending on your body weight and the effort you will put into rowing. The heavier you are, the greater the effort you will have to put in to lose the calories.
You can lose at least half a pound a week, and this will gradually increase, as the regular exercises will increase the metabolism of your body and lead to more calories being burnt. Combine this with a change in your diet and a lower calorie intake and you can lose as much as a pound a week.
Rowing causes the activation of nine muscle groups and 85 percent of the body’s musculature. Weight loss and calorie burn can be significant, but it does need being coupled with a sensible diet and not a fad diet.
You must be able to eat the things you like and in the right quantities that measure up to the calorie intake that you have decided on for your weight loss goals.
Looking for a good rower to start with?
Read our Hydrow Review to see on of our favorites.