03Mar 2021
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HotelGyms Crew

What does calories burned mean

If you have ever used a cardio machine or smartwatch with a fitness app, you probably noticed one interesting metric: calories burned. The more work you did, the more this number grew, and with it, your sense of fulfillment. But, how accurate is this value? More importantly, can we use it when tracking our fitness progress? Today, we will go over everything you need to know about calories burned, what it means, how good an indicator it is, and what benefits it offers. Let us dive in. What does calories burned mean? Calories burned is precisely what it sounds like: A machine or smart device is the best estimation for the number of calories you have burned. Most devices and cardio machines have specific formulas for calculating the number of calories a person would burn. For instance, hop on a treadmill, and it will start showing the calories you are burning. Good treadmills also have you input your weight, which helps make this calculation more accurate. A 55 kg (120 pounds) woman would burn a vastly different number of calories than an 80 kg (176 pounds) man, even if both do the same thing. On the contrary, watches like the FitBit Flex and heart rate monitors like the Polar H10 will also track your caloric expenditure based on your activity level, gender, and weight. Is calories burned a good indicator? The next logical question you probably have is, "Well, how accurate is this calorie reading?" The truth is, it depends. According to research from the past few years, most trackers out there do a good job tracking heart rate but are inaccurate for calories burned. The reason is, caloric burn is a complex process and depends on various factors. Gender and weight are two of the most significant aspects, but other factors play a role. For instance, how efficient you are. According to research, elite endurance athletes burn fewer calories than average people doing the same workout because of technical proficiency. In other words, they become so good at a given activity that inefficiency is removed from the equation, and they can do the same amount of work with less energy. It is simple, not as hard anymore for them compared to other people. Aerobic capacity and level of muscular development are two other significant factors. But, as you can imagine, commercially-available calorie trackers are not sophisticated enough to account for these vastly complicated factors. In general, men will burn more calories precisely because they tend to weigh more and have more muscle mass on their frames. A woman who weighs 55 kg (120 pounds) will burn some calories from an activity. But a man who weighs 100 kg (220 pounds) will burn a lot more calories. So, does this mean the calories burned metric is useless? Well, no. Let us explore why. The good and bad of calorie trackers Calorie trackers are good because they offer a consistent reading, albeit not the most accurate one (for now). Still, you can measure the calories you are burning over time and compare these values. For instance, if you use the same device (say, an Apple Watch) or the same machine (say, a treadmill), you can focus on burning more calories in the same amount of time. If you achieve that, it means that you are doing more work. Alternatively, you can aim to burn the same number of calories but in less time. If you are just getting started, pick a conservative goal and aim to achieve it every time - for example, 300 calories per workout. If you train five times per week, that is an extra 1’500 calories per week. Over time, you can try to increase it to 350, 400, and beyond. It is also essential to understand your total daily energy expenditure (TDEE) and how the calories you burn fit the picture. For instance, if you want to keep eating the same amount of food but lose some weight, you can aim to burn an extra 400 to 500 calories per day. Now, if you enjoy some friendly competition with friends or your significant other, we recommend choosing other metrics to compare. Although it is so easy to setup a compete with the Apple Watch, wouldn't this be fun, huh? Well, as we said above, calories burned is not as reliable, and heavier people tend to have the edge. Instead, it would be better to track metrics like step count, active time, and similar.
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24Feb 2021
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HotelGyms Crew

Review of Fitbod - How to take your fitness with you (2021)

If you have ever tried working out while traveling, you probably noticed something; it is much more complicated than it looks. Yes, while the act of working out is relatively tricky, knowing where to direct your effort is where the real challenge lies. What if an app can help you train effectively, no matter where you are or what kind of equipment you have access to? And what if with this app you could use a custom weight training workout plan that has been designed and personalized for your unique goals? To that end, we have put together this post for you. Below, we will discuss one fantastic app called Fitbod. Let us have a more in-depth look at the features and how they work, including a 25% off coupon code for Fitbod later in the article. Fitbod – Take your fitness with you Let us face it: Coming up with an effective fitness plan is not easy, and is one reason people worldwide pay a lot of money to have personal trainers and coaches guide them through the fitness jungle. But, with Fitbod, things have changed dramatically. With a few clicks on your phone, you can set up the app and have it created custom workouts for you every day. What is more, this app tracks your previous performance, takes your preferences and goals into account, asks for your available fitness equipment (if any), and provides you with unique and effective workouts. The app has an extensive database of exercises. You can customize it to build workouts that are purely bodyweight, cardio, with equipment (such as weights, battle ropes, and resistance bands), or a combination. Thanks to its flexibility, the app is perfect for everyone who wants to stay fit. Fitbod does not care if you are backpacking around Thailand, stay in a luxury hotel in Dubai, or, if you are at home, trying to squeeze a 20-minute workout before dinner. In the simplest of terms, this app allows you to train how you like, no matter what your circumstances and goals are. Workout Quality Workout apps are a dime a dozen. What sets Fitbod apart from the competition is the sheer quality of the service they provide. Most workout apps work like this: - Step 1 - Install the app. - Step 2 - Set some arbitrary goals (e.g., lose weight or burn the most amount of calories). - Step 3 - Receive a cookie-cutter workout program. As we will go over in one of the following points, Fitbod is a lot more sophisticated and considers numerous factors when putting together your workout program. Aside from the fact that the program is tailored to you and your needs, Fitbod accommodates a wide range of training styles, making it a great choice, no matter what type of training you prefer.  One fascinating thing is the AI-powered training algorithm they use, which understands your ability, past workouts, and available fitness equipment to create your personalized plan. Fitbod also allows you to go in and edit your workouts once you have received them to add or remove exercises. Most importantly, because the app tracks many things, it provides even better and more targeted workouts for you once you have been training with the app for a while. Some fun facts: Artificial Intelligence is a very powerful tool; even Hollywood knew this many years ago. If you have not, you might want to check out some top movies about Artificial Intelligence to understand the possibility better. What are others saying about Fitbod? According to Apple and Google, the customer and community feedback is very positive in both app stores. With an average star rating of 4.8/5 with 111k Ratings for iOS, the reviews are very positive. On Android, Fitbod gets a star-rating of 4.4/5 with 1’280 reviews. This version was released later in 2020 and is probably a bit behind. Most people like its intuitively designed layout that is easy to use and simple to understand and follow. Furthermore, the workouts are created uniquely for you and your goals. Think of this, Fitbod is designed to push you to your limits and make you stronger. Another thing different from many other fitness apps is that Fitbod will adjust your 1RM, which stands for one-repetition maximum, to closely reflect your actual weightlifting ability without risking injury or over-exertion. Fitbod’s exercise recommendations are based on how much weight you can lift and how often, and in what order you should raise the weights. Read more about this in their blog post. How to get started Getting started with Fitbod is incredibly easy. First, you need to download it from the app store. Once you are inside, it is time to do some customization. Head over to the “Your Gym” tab and start working down the list: 1. Available equipment – choose the equipment you have access to for your workouts (if any). 2. Fitness goals – select a goal (or multiple) so the app can better customize workouts for you. 3. Workout duration – write down how long you want your workouts to be. 4. Training experience – write down which category you fall into. 5. Training splits – if you would like, you can pick a spit that you prefer to follow, and Fitbod will customize your routine around it. For example, an upper/lower or push/pull/legs split. On top of that, you can also go down the list of exercises and exclude some – for example, if a given movement aggravates your shoulders, you can let the app know, and it will not recommend it to you. There is also an option for bodyweight-only workouts if you do not have any equipment – for example, if you are on the road and are limited to an in-room exercise. This is also a great way to pimp-up a bad hotel gym. How much does Fitbod Cost? Is there a free version of Fitbod? Aside from the free trial, there is no free version of the app. You will get your first three workouts for free after you signed up with your account. After this trial-period, you will have to upgrade to Fitbod Elite, where you will have access to unlimited custom workouts. The monthly plan costs $9.99, but you can pay $59.99 for an entire year, which is not a bad deal and brings the cost down to $5.00 a month. With this, you have the options of logging as many workouts as you can, use the exercise library, and watch demonstration videos. What if there is a way to get some additional Fitbod discount? Sign-up here, and you will receive 25% off from your next yearly or monthly Fitbod subscription (prmo code "HOTELGYMS"). Discount needs to be redeemed on website, not within the app store. What we think of Fitbod Fitbod is a fantastic app. It has a beautiful layout, and it is easy to use. But perhaps the thing that makes the app so unique is its sheer customizability. One of the first things folks notice about Fitbod is the impeccable choice of workouts, exercises, and training styles. Unlike many other apps, Fitbod has an incredible algorithm. Instead of providing its users with some cookie-cutter workout solution that does not do much for us, it analyzes the data we input and gives us a custom-tailored program. What is more, the app analyzes our previous performance and makes suggestions for our next workouts. To sum it up, let us also summarize some of the typical questions related to Fitbod: Do you need special equipment for this? No, as mentioned before, gym equipment is optional, and Fitbot also provides bodyweight-only exercise plans. However, if you have access to equipment, you take advantage of it too. Supported equipment are barbells, dumbbells, kettlebells, weight, or cable machines. For whom is the Fitbod? It is perfect for anyone trying to improve their fitness and wants to have some structure and guidance. It supports beginners with weightlifting or home workout with limited equipment. Is Fitbod the ultimate weightlifting app? Why not? For some, it certainly will be. Others prefer apps like Strong or Freeletics. Overall, the app is straightforward to use, and its use of an algorithm makes it stand out by creating workouts custom-tailored to the individual. If you have always found yourself struggling to find an excellent program to focus on, Fitbod might be what you need to get started. Thanks to the free trial, there is absolutely nothing stopping you from trying it for yourself. How to get 25% discount on Fitbod? Sign-up here to get yourself 25% off from the subscription.
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15Feb 2021
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HotelGyms Crew

What you need to know about moderate nutrition

Prevailing wisdom suggests that if we cannot eat all the time perfectly, we should not bother. The idea of clean eating suggests that all of our daily calories should come from whole, nutritious, and nature-based sources. Even the smallest of dietary indiscretions can lead to a downward spiral of problems. But, is this genuinely the case, or is the truth somewhere in the middle? Let us find out. The problem with clean eating Clean eating is among the most popular approaches to healthy eating. Many gurus and “experts” out there suggest that we need to eat “clean” foods if we want to build muscle, lose fat, feel good, and remain healthy. Having such a black and white approach to nutrition does more harm than good in the long run. Foods like pizza and cookies become “bad”, and alternatives such as salad and lean meats become “good”. Granted, basing your nutrition around whole foods is beneficial. But clean eating takes things to the extreme, and many people find themselves trapped and deprived of it. Ask yourself this: If you cannot stick with a specific way of eating in the long run, can you reasonably expect to achieve long-term results? What makes most diets fail Dieting is the even less appealing cousin of clean eating. Instead of restricting your food selection to “clean” choices, dieting restricts your options to a small group of foods within that. For example, the popular ketogenic diet has you eat only “clean” foods, but it goes one step further, as it restricts the foods that contain carbs. The reason why diets fail is similar to why clean eating does not work in the long run: both approaches are unsustainable. Sure, you can motivate yourself for a while. And, if you manage to see some results (such as fat loss), your motivation might spike even more. But, at some point, you will start feeling deprived. After all, we are human, and we want to enjoy the occasional treat. Plus, life happens, and we cannot always adhere to a perfect nutritional plan. For example, what if you had to attend a social event? Or what if your child has a birthday over the weekend? Are you supposed to avoid food and run home for a ‘clean’ meal every time you get hungry? Why you should strive for dietary flexibility Flexibility is a naughty word in the dieting sphere because it cuts through the established rules of healthy eating, weight loss, and muscle gain. And yet, flexibility allows us to stick with a nutrition plan and achieve great results in the long run. But why is that? Well, because we are human, we need to have a sense of control if we want to be content with our choices. If your nutrition offers no flexibility and restricts all of your favorite foods, you will eventually give up. The good news is, you do not have to be incredibly rigid to be successful. Contrary to what you may believe, the body cannot make a difference between a cookie and a bowl of green veggies. It can only distinguish between the energy and nutrients both foods provide. A cookie is not automatically stored as fat, and having a salad does not ensure fat loss. Each of us burns energy every day to stay alive and function. So long as we do not consume more energy than we burn, we remain the same weight. If we consume less energy than we burn, we lose weight, no matter our food choices. This is how professor Mark Haub shed 27 pounds in two months by eating mostly twinkies - he created a calorie deficit. Instead of having a black and white mentality toward food, we should see our food choices as more and less nutritious. What does this mean for us Flexible dieting became incredibly popular in the last decade because it allowed us to enjoy some of our favorite foods, maintain healthy nutrition, and achieve our fitness and health objectives. While diets appear more alluring at first, they rarely work in the long run. On the other hand, flexible dieting works because it is not a diet but a lifestyle. It involves a mindset shift and urges us to see food for what it is: fuel for the body. As with all types of fuels, food can also vary in quality and usefulness.  According to the general guidelines of flexible dieting, we should get around 80 to 90 percent of our calories from whole and nutritious foods and leave the remaining 10 to 20 percent for treats. That way, we can make good progress and be fit while also enjoying the little pleasures, going out for meals with friends, and not freaking out when a social event forces us to eat something that is not necessarily “clean” or “healthy”. And honestly, how can something delicious like a pizza be wrong… 😊
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07Feb 2021
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HotelGyms Crew

Another big step for HotelGyms.com

It has been a heck of a year, not only with all the events of the world but for us here at HotelGyms.com. Over the last year we have sought to add scores of new improvements to the platform and want to go over some of those today. It should be a refreshing way to start the new year and give you a glimpse at what we have tried to focus on behind the scenes Enanced the GymFactor Score The GymFactor score is the heart of our platform. Without it, we would not have an official or reliable way to track which gyms genuinely shine. This means that we have had to make it as brilliant a system that we can. Look away if you fear the Terminator, but if you welcome our new robot overlords, read on. We have used Artificial Intelligence (AI) to analyze various gyms' images and further enhance the GymFactor scores and the images' description. This makes it less time-consuming for us, and we can therefore get more gyms analyzed and on the site for your own analysis.  The hotel details page has been tweaked to get some more information on there. The elevation is displayed for our athletes, a feature which was requested to prepare for marathons such as Ironman. We have also put in more integration with premium fitness app vendors. Nothing too major, but you don't need a revolution for everything. We are also very excited about the additional fitness equipment details we can now show on every detail page. We have also simplified the GymFactor visualization and filters in order to make it as easy as possible to understand what you get at a glance. In fact, this is a step that we have tried to take all across the site. Almost all designs have been slightly refreshed to give the website a new look and cleaner feel. As they say, "new decade, new me".  Integration with wider Programs Perhaps some of the most exciting developments that we have made for the site are less about what we have done, but more about what we have connected with. Our new connection with Google Places means that we will be able to use their information and analyze even more gyms worldwide. But not only that. The combination of Google Places and Compute Vision means that users will be able to plan various new scenarios for whatever location they decide to visit. These could include gym workouts based on what equipment is available, running routes around local landmarks and monuments, or others unique to the area they are in. Perhaps you need an external gym to get some other fitness equipment that is not at the hotel? We have got you covered at HotelGyms.com.  plan. travel. workout. These are the main developments that we have made over the last 9 months, but it certainly is not the end of the development cycle. HotelGyms.com is always looking to improve and reach out to more fitness enthusiasts who also enjoy a good trip.  That is why we are always looking for people to get in touch with us and work with us to find areas we can enhance. Whether it is leaving a review after a trip, contacting us with new information on hotels, or even just dropping in to say hello, we are always glad to check-in.  👉Here is to a new year and a (much, much) better one! 🌍🥇
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29Jan 2021
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HotelGyms Crew

How to use Apps to track your Workouts

Nowadays, many people cannot seem to stick to a fitness plan. For some, the problem is lack of time. Others cannot seem to stay motivated long enough to make a change. But, we all know that working out consistently is incredibly beneficial for us. With the rise of fitness apps, the good news is that tracking our workouts and staying consistent has become easier than it ever was. Let us see why that is. Your all-in-one Fitness Tool The market offers many fitness-related apps, and some of them are amazing. Fitbod and Strong are two prime examples because they allow us to track various aspects of the whole fitness thing. Strong is probably the most straightforward and most intuitive workout tracker to help you stay on track in the gym. It is specialized for workout tracking using a phone or smartwatch when doing your workout in the gym. The user interface is clean and simple, which makes it very easy to track workouts. It is the little features that make Strong really great and help stay on track in the gym. Get the Strong app here. Another excellent choice is Fitbod. This app helps build automatic workouts based on your available equipment and customize an exercise based on specific goals and needs. Fitbod stands out with this machine learning capabilities and are great travel compagnion as the app also provides options for in-room and (hotel) gym workouts. Get the Fitbod app with 25% discount here. Using either of the apps, we can look back at what we have done when we have trained last and how recovered we are now. This is a lot of valuable data that helps us make better training decisions for our upcoming workouts and helps keep us motivated. A good App will keep you accountable and motivated While it may sound a bit superficial, it is not. Tracking your performance and training consistency are two of the best ways to keep yourself accountable. This is because if you do not train consistently, the lack of progress is apparent and tells you something: You need to get serious about this. Apps are also valuable because you get to see them immediately when you put in the effort and make progress. This creates a positive feedback loop where you see results, keep pushing yourself, and see even more progress.  How to Get Started The great news is, getting started is incredibly simple. All you have to do is download an app and set it up. The entire process takes no more than ten minutes, and you are ready to go. Typically, the app will ask some personal questions like: - What are your fitness goals? - How often can you train and for how long? - What kind of equipment do you have access to (if any)? Then, you either let the app create a workout plan for you or add yours to your profile. The best part is, even if you would train in another gym, or when being abroad, your phone is in 99% of the cases with you – and you can input and track everything with just a few clicks: - Sets, reps, and weights - Exercises you have done - How your performance is changing - How recovered you are If you want to simplify your fitness, manage your workouts, and track your progress effectively, you need an app for that.
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24Jan 2021
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HotelGyms Crew

Should you drink a coffee before a workout?

We hardly need an excuse to drink coffee. After all, this is among the most popular beverages on the planet, and the majority of adults drink it for the benefits: alertness, focus, energy, and more. But, as it turns out, drinking coffee before a workout might turn out to be incredibly beneficial. Coffee before a Workout: Good or bad? To answer this question, we need to consider the effects of caffeine on the body. Caffeine is a stimulant. As such, it makes us more alert, focused, energized, and motivated. All of these are beneficial for our workout performance. As a stimulant, the body gradually builds up a tolerance to caffeine, and its effects become less pronounced over time. At some point, we can even become dependent on caffeine to feel usual instead of lazy and unmotivated. Caffeine also has a half-life of about six hours. Meaning, if you ingest 400 mg of caffeine at 4 pm, you still have around 200 mg circulating your system at 10 pm. This can make it more difficult for you to fall asleep and get the deep and restorative rest you need. But what about the workout? Is it advisable to drink coffee before working out? The short answer to this is yes. Coffee can be beneficial to have before a workout. However, you might want to time it 45 minutes before working out when the maximum caffeine concentrations hit. You might want to stay away from it after working out. Rehydrate your body with water first before any caffeine. Water remains the essential beverage before, during, and after a workout session. Some other advantages of drinking coffee before working out: - Enhance your performance. - Reduce muscle pain. What are the disadvantages of drinking coffee before a workout? In many cases, coffee is a welcomed addition to a fitness routine. But you should be careful and avoid having any within six to eight hours of going to bed. It is also a good idea to cycle caffeine to prevent your body from building too great of a tolerance. For example, consume it for three weeks, and take one week off. Five other things to consume before a Workout If coffee is not your favorite drink, or you want to explore some alternatives, let’s chat look at five different things to try before a workout: 1. Citrulline malate Citrulline is an amino acid that appears to boost our performance through various mechanisms. Its most popular form is citrulline malate, where the amino acid is bound to malic acid. 2. Beta-Alanine Similar to citrulline, beta-alanine is another amino acid supported by research. According to studies, consuming beta-alanine before training can boost our exercise performance, specifically in the one to three-minute range. 3. A Protein Shake Having a protein shake an hour or two before training is fantastic because it provides your body with a steady stream of amino acids that help support muscle mass and prevent breakdown. 4. Water Though many people overlook it, water is vital for our health, gym performance, energy, and mood. Having water before, during, and after training is one of the best things we can do. 5. BCAAs Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) are not that important, mostly if you eat a high-protein diet. If you tend to train fast or your last meal is hours before training, having some BCAAs can help prevent muscle protein breakdown.
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20Jan 2021
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Written By
Michel, HotelGyms.com Staff

The Top 10 Workout Headphones (2021)

Let's face it, listening to some of your favorite tunes is a fantastic way to boost your energy and mood, feel more motivated, and train harder. Whether you typically train in a gym, at home, or outdoors, music will always make the entire process a lot more enjoyable. To that end, we have put together this post. Below, we will discuss why listening to music is essential and what you should look for when buying a pair of workout headphones. As an added benefit, we have also listed ten fantastic headphone models to consider. The Benefits of listening to Music as you train At first glance, listening to music while training might not seem all that important. After all, why would it matter? However, putting your headphones on and listening to some of your favorite songs boasts numerous physical and psychological benefits. For example, listening to music as you train helps you get in the zone more quickly and focus better on your training. It also prevents distractions from grabbing your attention and lowering your training intensity. We have all had to deal with overly chatty people at the gym, and we know how it can worsen our workouts' quality. By putting some headphones on, you can tune out distractions and focus on what is important: getting your workout done. Listening to music as you train is also a fantastic way to boost your effort. While it may seem superficial, the right songs can elevate your mood and boost your motivation, which will tune out fatigue to a degree and help you push yourself a bit harder. Over time, that extra effort can add up to significantly better results. What to look for when choosing Workout Headphones The most expensive headphones out there do not guarantee quality or usefulness. At the same time, going for the cheapest headphones might end up costing you more in the long run because you are more likely to replace pairs often due to malfunctions. So, if the price is not what matters most, what should we look for?  For one, they should fit well and should not fall off when you are doing something active. They should fit snugly but should also be comfortable enough for you to wear for at least an hour. Think of exercises like running or laying on a bar for chest-press, and you want the headphones to be sticky and not fall out. Battery life is also essential here, as some pairs score incredibly low and could barely last through two workouts. After all, you do not want them to die in the middle of a good workout. Plus, having to recharge them often can become burdensome. Ease of use is the third important thing to watch out for. You do not want to be spending ten minutes before every workout pairing them to your phone and configuring them. Since we are looking at workout headphones, the pair you choose also needs to be waterproof. If they are not, sweat will inevitably get inside and mess them up in no time. Another factor worth considering here is the ease of transportation. For example, if you often travel, investing in a high-quality set of headphones might be better. This is because cheaper headphones often break during transport. Smaller headphones might come in handy as they do not typically take up much space, and the quality ones usually come in a rigid case that protects them during transit. On the other hand, bigger headphones tend to be better for long haul flights because you can have them on your ears for a long time without feeling discomfort. The best Workout Headphones for 2021 There are a ton of workout headphones on the market. Picking a good pair is challenging and can be frustrating. To make it easier for you, we've put together a list of ten fantastic models to consider: 1. EarFun Air Pro 2. Bose SoundSport Wireless 3. Apple AirPods Pro 4. Plantronics BackBeat Fit 6100 5. Jaybird X3 In-Ear Wireless Bluetooth Sports 6. Mpow X3 7. Samsung Galaxy Buds Live 8. Beats Solo3 Wireless On-Ear 9. Jabra Elite 75t 10. Jaybird Vista I started with the Apple AirPods, which did not work for me as they did not fit. I moved to the Apple AirPods Pro, and they do a fantastic job for - best headphones for my gym workout. At home, I use the Sonos to play my favorite tunes.
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15Jan 2021
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Written By
Michel, HotelGyms.com Staff

What cardio machine should I buy?

If you are looking to spend some money on cardio equipment, you are probably excited. You get to train in the comfort of your home, and you do not have to worry about transitioning to gym training or wearing a face mask. The problem is, people usually think about three primary options to pick from treadmills, ellipticals, and bikes. Choosing one over the other three can be challenging. To that end, we have put together this post to help you make the right choice. Before we start, we need to make this a bit more complicated. There is a fourth option to include rowing machines. Pros and cons of each Let us dive into the topic of the top four cardio machines that are good for your home workout: - Treadmill - Stationary bike - Elliptical - Rowing machine Not only will these cardio machines give you heart-pumping and sweat-including workout, but they will also help you burn more calories. Treadmill An all-time classic of the cardio machines is the treadmill. It is typically used to walk, jog or run forwards. The device is excellent for those who want to go for a run without having to battle outdoor elements. Because there are so many different options for using a treadmill, the calorie burn can be as intense or minimal as you see fit. Great for: weight loss, cardiovascular endurance Low impact? No Example Equipment Providers: Life Fitness, Technogym Pros - You can walk or run indoors - You get to exercise upright and work on your posture - It’s easy to get started - It’s great for burning lots of calories Cons - It’s more expensive - It takes up more space and is more difficult to move - It’s loud - It’s higher impact, which means that it can lead to wear and tear on the joints of the lower body Stationary Bike The stationary bike is a trendy choice and an efficient way to become fitter and healthier. It is very convenient, as you can use it anytime you like, no matter the weather, and they are great for weight loss and because they get you moving and burning calories. Great for: weight loss, full-body workout, low-impact Low impact? Yes Example Equipment Providers: Life Fitness, Technogym Pros - There is no learning curve - It’s low-impact, making it great for beginners and overweight folks - It burns a modest number of calories - You can train with a variety of intensities Cons - It mostly works your lower body - You have to exercise seated - It can get a bit monotonous Elliptical The elliptical machine is anoter very common one seen in most of the gyms. It is a great weight loss cardio machine that is also low-impact and places less stress on your joints. This is also an excellent option for those who need to ease back into exercise after injury or surgery. Great for: weight loss, balance, and coordination Low impact? Yes Example Equipment Providers: Life Fitness, Technogym  Pros - It trains your whole body - It burns a lot of calories - You get many features and training programs - It’s low-impact, similar to stationary bikes Cons - It can be relatively loud - It’s heavier and takes up more space - Good models are costly Rowing Machine And here we are with the rowing machine, the wild card. It is actually one of the best cardio machines that are good for weight loss. It works in multiple muscle groups and ensures minimal stress on the body due to the seated position. It is also a great option to use the entire body in a workout as it targets more muscles than just the lower body. Great for: weight loss, full-body workout Low impact? Yes Example Equipment Providers: Life Fitness, Technogym Pros - It trains your entire body - It’s fun and engaging - It doesn’t take much to learn the basic technique and get started - It’s affordable and takes up less space Cons - Poor technique can lead to back pain - They can be noisy - It can get monotonous to row for long periods Which of the four wins? Picking one of the four equipment pieces can be challenging, especially if you plan on using it often. After all, you would not want to pick one piece of equipment only to regret it later. Perhaps a better way to pick one over the other is to look at yourself: What goals do you have? How much money can you spend? What are your primary fitness goals? Even more importantly, which piece of equipment do you enjoy using most? While overlooked, the factor of enjoyability plays a massive role in our overall investment, how much we push ourselves, and how consistent we are with our training. For example, if ratings suggest that it is best to buy a treadmill, but you find it dull and uninspiring, do you believe it to be the right choice for you? Or what if you have knee issues? Here are some recommendations to keep in mind: 1. Go for the rowing machine if your primary goals are to develop your upper body and get stronger. A rowing machine is also a budget-friendly option that offers more diverse training. 2. Go for the elliptical if you want to train your entire body and enjoy doing high-intensity training. The elliptical is also low-impact, making it an excellent option for overweight folks and those with previous injuries. 3. Go for the treadmill if you love walking and running as a means of getting fit and burn calories. Also, keep in mind that the treadmill tends to put a bit more stress on your knees and ankles. 4. Go for the bike if you are looking for a budget option, and you do not mind doing rather dull training. You can also do HIIT-style workouts on it or sign-up for a Peloton. I find it very hard to enjoy a treadmill. I instead go for a run outside. The same applies to the bike, where I find myself focusing more on the TV than my workout. However, I like the treadmill and rowing machines and even consider getting one for my home.
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11Jan 2021
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HotelGyms Crew

How to travel during the Pandemic – COVID-19 Testing

The COVID-19 pandemic has been hitting the world for just about a year now, with many regions still struggling to deal with the disease. Like New Zealand, some regions have gotten it under control and completely rid themselves of it, while some, like the United States, look nowhere near overcoming it. Partially because of this divide and partly due to the outbreak's sheer infectiousness, COVID tests have become mandatory for many aspects of life, with travel being perhaps the most prominent. However, one of the issues with this is that there are so many COVID tests available that it can be hard to pick out reliable and safe ones. That is what we are here to do today. We will look at some of the major COVID-19 testing methods and explain what they do, what they are used for, and judge whether or not it is safe to consider them as preparation for your next travel. We are going to look at these different types of Coronavirus Test: - Molecular Test (PCR) - Antigen Test (IgM) - Antibody Test (IgG) While PCR-Tests are checking for the infection with the virus, the antibody test checks for the virus-specific antibodies in the blood. Therefore, it is crucial to understand your situation, where you are on the timescale before, in the middle, or post-infection with COVID. There is another thing you want to remember when taking your tests; 30 minutes before the test you are not allowed to eat (also no chewing gum or similar), drink or smoke. This is not mentioned by all test centers, but probably a good practices to follow.  Little disclaimer here, we are no doctors nor are we COVID-19 health experts. This article has been created based on our own research consulting the various national health websites. PCR Tests Let us have a look at the most common test, the PCR tests. These tests take the molecules from a nasal or throat swab (or even saliva in a few cases) and seek to figure out whether or not you have traces of COVID located in your genetic makeup.  How long the results take can vary massively based on location. Labs could be ready within hours, but more often take a day or two. If the labs are overwhelmed (as they have been so often in many locations), it could take a week to get back. According to the FDA, this test is usually highly accurate and does not need to be replicated. A similar report comes from the Harvard Medical School, where the false positive rate is nearly zero and mostly due to contamination in the lab or some other error. These tests can be received at a hospital or medical office. When should I take the PCR (Molecular) Test? This test is needed to identify the current presence of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19 disease. As a result, this is one of the best tests you can get for traveling, as it is accurate and can be received back in a day or two. This is also the type of test required when entering countries like Dubai or the Maldives. Antigen Tests (IgM) Up next is the Antigen (IgM) test, which is also known as a diagnostic test and also taken via nasal or throat swab. When a virus attacks, IgM is usually the first antibody produced by the immune system. A positive test indicates that you may have been infected and that your immune system has started responding to the virus. These tests can be taken at a hospital, doctor's office, or for some, even at home. The antigen test is looking for protein fragments (or "antigens", hence the name) from the virus to identify if you have currently got it. Depending on the test, the results for these tests can come back extremely quickly. It is usually judged to be anywhere between 15-30 minutes. The biggest problem with antigen tests is that they tend to give out more false positives than molecular tests. While the results do come back quicker and the tests themselves are generally less expensive, the FDA recommends taking multiple of them regardless of your result. That way, you can double or even triple check your results.  When should I take the Antigen (IgM) Test? This test often is the first check if you have been in close contact with an individual suspected of or confirmed to have COVID-19; or you traveled to a place where transmission of COVID-19 is known to occur. Because these tests are so quick and cheap, it makes them quite ideal for this first analysis and a good travel companion. However, they do have less accuracy than the molecular tests can mean that you should not take the first answer at face value every time. Antibody Tests (IgG) Finally, there are antibody tests. These tests are also called serological tests, blood tests, or serology tests. For these tests, nasal and throat swabs are not involved, but rather a finger stick or blood draw is taken. The biggest issue with using antibody tests is that they do not tell you if you have the disease now. It can tell you if you've had it in the past, as it accurately identifies any antibodies that the body has produced in response to the virus. Most patients develop IgG antibodies within 7 to 10 days after symptoms of COVID-19 begin. IgG antibodies also remain in the blood after an infection has passed. These tests are only available at doctor's offices, hospitals, and blood testing labs, and results usually are available between 1 and 3 days. When should I take the Antibody (IgG) Test? Antibody tests are not recommended for travel, as they do not tell you whether you have the virus at the time of travel. However, if you know or suspect that you have had the disease in the past and combine it with one of the previous tests to prove that you do not have it currently, that could be a better decision. Testing for Travel Where you are going dictates what sorts of testing you need to get done. Because of the PCR test's accuracy, it tends to be the most accepted form of these tests. As a quick recap, the summary of the previously described COVID-tests: As an example, those arriving in Dubai (from an extensive list of countries) are required to present a valid negative COVID-19 PCR test certificate taken no more than 96 hours before departure. Be aware that no hand-written, SMS, or digital certificates will be accepted. You may also be required to take another test at Dubai airports upon arrival. For more requirements for tourists arriving in Dubai check this website. Other countries like the Dominican Republic have removed all requirements for proof of a negative COVID-19 test result. However, visitors are still tested randomly upon arrival, and if they are positive, they must quarantine in a hotel until symptoms are gone. When can you travel after having COVID? This is probably the most challenging question. You have tested positive but isolated/quarantined yourself, and now all symptoms are gone. Does this now mean that you can travel? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) still strongly recommends "no". People who had the coronavirus can still develop antibodies that neutralize the pathogens, but there are still big questions around how effective that is. Antibodies may persist for three months. However, a recovered coronavirus patient may still get reinfected. As of now, questions around immunity still linger. plan. travel. workout. Unfortunately, until this pandemic is under control worldwide, travel should not be undertaken, as it will only lengthen how long it will take. Even if you caught it at the beginning and feel fantastic now, it is simply safer to delay those travel plans for another, safer time. To bear in mind, we still do not know how long antibodies stay in the body after infection with the COVID-19 virus. You might still be tested positive months after the recovery of the illness.
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07Jan 2021
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HotelGyms Crew

The best Hotel Gyms in Swiss Ski Resorts

When in a Swiss ski resort, there are a few reasons why you may want to use a gym. For example, keeping on top of your fitness regime, the mountain could be closed due to bad weather, or you may be the non-skier of the group. Hotel health and fitness facilities can range from a simple workout room to a beautiful spa. We are here to help you find the perfect hotel gym for you. Here you will learn about some great options for hotel gyms in the Swiss ski resorts of: - Zermatt - Flims-Laax - Davos-Klosters Ski resorts are operating in strict compliance with the COVID-19 safety concepts. While all national regulations are listed on the website of MySwitzerland.com, other measures may apply at cantonal level. For further information, please contact the individual destinations and providers. Zermatt Zermatt is Europe’s highest ski resort, and its snow-sure slopes attract skiers and snowboarders from all over the world. Featuring 360 kilometers (223 miles) of blue, red, black, and yellow runs, you can be assured that you will experience some of the best skiing Europe has to offer. The modern lifts and cable cars make ascending the mountain stress-free and effortless, while the town provides guests with numerous events, gourmet restaurants, fantastic shopping, and lively aprés ski. All of this is in the shadow of the iconic Matterhorn. Hotel Phoenix The gym at the Hotel Pheonix is exceptional and ideal for people serious about their fitness. Its large space has a wide range of strength equipment, including a massive collection of free weights. You will find a fantastic selection of Cybex machines, including a cable machine. You can also take advantage of the various massage treatments on offer. For the full information about the gym including pictures, go to our Hotel Phoenix detail page. Some words about the Hotel Hotel Phoenix is popular with its guests, thanks to its blend of value, comfort, and convenience. It is a family and dog-friendly hotel that gives you easy access to the sights and sounds of Zermatt. The hotel’s restaurant produces fantastic food and regularly hosts gourmet evenings. Grand Hotel Zermatterhof Set in the Vita Borni spa, the Grand Hotel Zermatterhof’s gym is modern and features a range of strength and cardio equipment from TechnoGym. The spa itself has a sauna and a large swimming pool with a tranquil ambiance. There is also a range of treatments to help you relax and rejuvenate. Go to the Grand Hotel Zermatterhof detail page to check the details about the gym. Some words about the Hotel The Grand Hotel Zermatterhof is a period 5-star hotel in a central location, giving you easy access to Zermatt’s bars, restaurants, and ski lifts. Guests arrive at the hotel from the train station via electric car or horse-drawn carriage. The hotel’s three restaurants offer guests local specialties and Michelin star food. Hotel Schweizerhof Zermatt The spa in the Hotel Schweizerhof specializes in de-stressing, sports recovery, and preparing the body for a day on the mountain. The spa features a heated swimming pool, saunas, a steam room, whirlpools, and a relaxation room, perfect for soothing tired muscles. However, the gym, overlooking the hotel gardens, has cardio and strength equipment, including a TechnoGym Kenisis cable machine. Find some pictures and more details about the gym on our Hotel Schweizerhof detail page.  Some words about the Hotel This recently refurbished hotel has a beautiful contemporary design, offering a luxury mountain experience. There is a range of room choices to suit your budget and a fantastic concierge service. The excellent restaurant and bar are perfect for enjoying local delicacies during your evenings. Flims-Laax The ski resort itself sits above the villages of Laax, Flims, and Falera in Surselva (Bündner Oberland). Skiiers and snowboarders come to the area year after year, thanks to the variety it provides. The modern lift system gives you quick and easy access to slopes suitable for all levels. The area is popular with freestylers due to the abundance of snow parks, a superpipe, and the Freestyle Academy. Off the mountain, Laax-Flims has plenty to offer its guests. Lively après ski, gastronomic delights, and many family-friendly activities make it an excellent destination for groups and families. Riders Hotel The Rider’s Hotel gym has everything you need to keep your workouts varied. The range of free weights and cardio equipment is exceptional. But, what makes this gym stand out is the bodyweight and coordination equipment. This stuff allows you to cross-train like pro freestylers. For more details, check-out the detail page of the Riders Hotel.  Some words about the Hotel The hotel itself has several different room choices to suit your needs and budget. The contemporary minimalist style continues throughout the hotel, creating a relaxed atmosphere. You are treated to a huge buffet breakfast with everything you need to fuel yourself for a day on the mountain in the mornings. Waldhaus Flims Wellness Resort The gym at the Waldhaus Wellness Resort is more than just a hotel gym. Its instructors are on hand to demonstrate the state-of-the-art TechnoGym equipment, and there is also a range of daily fitness and relaxation classes. The indoor and outdoor heated pools are gorgeous and have panoramic views of the mountains. The outdoor pool has a series of jets and bubble loungers to ensure total relaxation. Of course, the wellness center also provides a range of treatments in the private spa. Find out more about the Waldhaus Flims Wellness Resort on our detail page.  Some words about the Hotel This large hotel is designed to give its guests the ultimate experience in Flims-Laax. The gorgeous rooms have balconies or floor to ceiling windows, giving you fantastic views of the Waldhaus Park or the Swiss Alps. It also has four gourmet restaurants serving food made from locally sourced ingredients. The Hide Hotel The Hide Hotel’s gym is part of the 1’000m2 wellness spa. It has a selection of state of the art Life Fitness equipment in an enjoyable setting. There is plenty of opportunities to rejuvenate and relax, thanks to the Finnish Panorama Sauna with a direct mountain view, steam-room, Sanarium (click here in case you are not aware of this term), rain showers and relaxation room. Couples love the private SPA area, built for two. Go to The Hide Flims Hotel detail page for more information and pictures about their gym. Some words about the Hotel With its contemporary design with warm tones and creative decor, the Hide Hotel offers a unique alpine experience. Its location gives you easy access to fantastic shopping and a modern cinema, as soon as you step out the door. The hotel is an ideal place to enjoy a family holiday, too, thanks to the kid’s paradise. Davos-Klosters  At a maximum altitude of 2'844 meters, skiers and snowboarders can use 58 ski lifts and 300 kilometers of slopes (186 miles). There is also 100 kilometers of cross-country ski tracks, over 150 kilometers of snowshoe and winter hiking trails. The two ice rinks are popular for people that enjoy ice hockey, ice skating, and curling off the mountain. The Davos-Klosters ski area consists of six resorts, Parsenn/Gotschna, Jakobshorn, Pischa, Madrisa, Rinerhorn, and Schatzalp/Strela. The Parsenn connects up Davos with the neighboring resort of Klosters. This area is famous for downhill skiers. But if you spend your mountain time hitting jumps and freestyle riding, the Jakobshorn site is the best place for you. Grischa Hotel Hotel Grischa does not actually have a gym. It works in partnership with the fantastic fitness center at Davos Postplatz, which is just a four-minute walk away. This facility has everything you need to keep you moving. The gym features the newest TechnoGym equipment, group fitness classes, personal training, and a free weights area. Grischa guests get all of this for free of charge. Go to the Grischa - das Hotel Davos detail page to check the details about the gym cooperation. Some words about the Hotel Hotel Grischa has a wide range of rooms and suites to choose from. No matter which option you go for, you will not be disappointed. They are all tastefully decorated and extremely comfortable. Dining in the hotel is a superb and diverse experience, thanks to its five different restaurants. Evenings are enjoyed in the trendy bar and lounge and an authentic cigar lounge. Hard Rock Davos The Gym at the Hard Rock Hotel is known as the Body Rock Gym. It is small, but it has a selection of free weights, a TechnoGym cable machine, and some cardio equipment. The spa has a calming atmosphere in which to relax and treat yourself. You can expect a vitality pool, whirlpool, steam room, and yoga studio other than the gym. In addition to all this, there is an experience & Ice shower and a selection of saunas. Check-out the Hard Rock Hotel Davos detail page for more details about their Body Rock Gym. Some words about the Hotel Staying at the Hard Rock Hotel in Davos is a very alternative experience to the traditional hotels and chalets. You can expect to be satisfied whether you want a romantic weekend, spa break, corporate retreat or an extravagant alpine wedding. The rooftop bar gives 360-degree views of Davos, while the restaurants serve classic dishes with a Swiss influence. The selection of rooms and suites feature music inspired amenities while providing comfort and mountain views. AMERON Davos Swiss Mountain Resort The gym is a small part of the large 4 Elements Spa Centre. Here you can enjoy your workout in a pleasant environment, using the strength and cardio equipment and the cable machine. The rest of the spa is a haven for relaxation after a day on the mountain. Here, you can experience a range of different massage and beauty treatments. Some of the spa’s many features include a heated pool, saunas, a steam bath, a Kneipp foot bath, and an ice fountain. Have a look at the Ameron Davos Swiss Mountain Resort detail page . Some words about the Hotel The Ameron is a beautiful four-star hotel featuring modern and cozy rooms. There are a few options to choose from, and some have stunning alpine views. The hotel’s restaurants provide gastronomic delights made from local and seasonal ingredients. Davos Intercontinental And last but not least, the Davos Intercontinental. The gym at the Davos Intercontinental hotel is part of the 1’200m2 Alpine Spa. The gym itself has a good selection of strength and cardio equipment. Hotel guests have access to a heated indoor and outdoor pool. The outdoor pool has bubble massage loungers and incredible views of the valley. There are two separate wellness centers for men and women that each has its own sauna and steam bath. However, there is a shared sauna and a sanarium.  The spa also has a range of treatments available to enjoy in any of the fourteen different treatment rooms. Go to the Davos Intercontinental detail page to check the latest information about their hotel gym. Some words about the Hotel Placed high on a hill overlooking Davos, you cannot miss the unusual shape and golden hue of the Davos Intercontinental hotel. Its contemporary rooms and suites are high end and extremely comfortable. Rooms at the front of the building give you stunning views of the valley below. There are five choices of bars and restaurants in the hotel. For a relaxed drink, the Nuts & Co bar is a great place to hang out. Service throughout the hotel is exceptional, but this is especially the case in the Studio Grigio restaurant on the top floor, where you are greeted as soon as you step out of the lift before being served fantastic food. plan. travel. workout. Winter sports, and winter vacations might not be everyones favorite - and you might prefer some warmer climate. Dubai has some of the best hotels of the world and has a very nice climate during the European winter. Whatever location is your favorite spot to visit next, we are here to help you find your hotel with a perfect fitness facility.
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