Archive for October, 2012

5 iPhone Apps to Help Your Boxing

Boxing is as much about hard work and determination as it is technique and stamina. That’s why we think that it’s important to find inspiration and motivation for sticking to the sometimes grueling schedule of training. A great way to do that is with technology – namely, phone apps that make sticking to your routine and recording your progress quick, easy, and simple to do.

These 5 apps (some paid, some free) will help you improve your  boxing skills and stick to your schedule. Let us know if you use any others that we should be listing.

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1. Boxing Timer

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Boxing Timer is a quick and easy way to help you train without having to have an additional timer on hand. This app will time boxing rounds for your training or sparring sessions.

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2. Boxing Trainer

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Boxing Trainer is like your own personal boxing coach – but in digital format. Boxing Trainer creates custom workouts for you and provides 50 stretches and 13 technique video to help you get the most out of your workouts.

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3. Boxing Lessons

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Want to learn the basics of boxing, but don’t have the cash for one-on-one lessons? Boxing Lessons has a library of videos to help get you started on basic punching and jabbing techniques.

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4. MyBoxing Trainer

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MyBoxing Trainer offers a boxing timer and instructional videos, but it also offers customizable workout plans for any age and any goal. It focuses on not only boxing technique, but conditioning, circuit training, and drills.

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5. Calorie Tracker

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We all know that sticking to a smart diet is one of the most important aspects of training because boxing is so physically draining, it’s imperative to eat the right kinds of food that are going to give you energy and keep you lean. Calorie Tracker from LiveStrong makes it easy to do that on the go, which is ideal when you’re eating out.

Life Unboxed: Have I Hit a Plateau with my Weight Loss?

Maybe this title is a little misleading – plateauing with an exercise regimen usually indicates that there’s no weight or any other evident change from your workout. My weight has stayed pretty consistent, aside from about 5 pounds lost. The upside to that is that I’ve gone down a pants size (almost two) and I can see definite changes in my body.

I’m not sure if my weight not going down is just offset by the additional muscle that I’ve built up over the last eight weeks (I’m sure some of it is), but it can be a bit of a downer to not see the scale drop. But really, if I have to choose between seeing the scale drop and fitting into a smaller pants size, I’ll choose the latter hands down every time.

My workouts have started to take on a sort of pattern too. Over a two week period, I have about two really intense initial workouts. The next four are easier since I’ve gotten the hang of the circuit training, and then they’re followed by two more workouts that make me question why I signed up (just kidding – I actually really love my workouts now).

I’ve also started seeing a marked improvement in my ability to run and do sprints. At last count, I ran sprints for 15 minutes as a warmup, which is a giant improvement over my panting while jogging just two months ago.

Overall, boxing has become a more inclusive part of my routine, which is nice. I’ve made friends at the gym and I have a sort of small support team there. And aside from the circuit training and running, I’ve been spending a lot more time in the ring, which is awesome (although really, really tiring). I’ve also heard that once I get past sparring with Kwame (my trainer), I’ll get to actually spar with other boxers. And who knows, maybe I’ll grow a pair and even video tape it for the blog.

5 Tips for Sticking with your Boxing Diet

Since boxers compete in different weight classes, every pound counts and a strong boxing diet becomes just as integral a part of training as cardio, weight training and sparring. For men and women who use boxing primarily for weight loss, it’s still important as it can significantly speed up your weight loss and help improve your metabolism. Even more so, a healthy diet can help keep sickness and disease at bay. But if adhering to a healthy meal plan were easy, there’d be no reason to wax on about it and the pages of Google results detailing how to stick to your diet wouldn’t exist.

Bottom line? Eating healthy is hard work and it takes dedication to stick to a boxing diet – especially after five weeks straight of eating oatmeal, hard boiled eggs and tuna. So how do you stay motivated enough to stick to a healthy meal plan? We use these 5 tips to stay motivated and keep eating healthy.

1. Start the day off right. 

Breakfast is absolutely key in maintaining your boxing diet throughout the day. If you get derailed from eating well in the morning, it can set the tone for the rest of your day. Try to make breakfast a routine – if you can get that down pat, it’ll make it easier to stick to healthy food choices throughout the rest of the day.

2. Set goals and write them down.

Setting goals (especially short-term goals) is vital in maintaining a healthy diet since it gives you something specific to works towards. These may be in the form of a weekly weight loss goal or a decrease in body fat. Whatever it is, write it down and keep it on your at all times as a reminder to make food decisions that will help you reach that goal.

3. Substitue fruit for sweets.

We all have cravings for sweets occasionally. Instead of snacking on a brownie or ice cream though, try to curb your sweet tooth with fruits like apples and bananas. They carry far more nutritional value, less calories, and you won’t feel like you’re depriving yourself.

4. Drink water regularly.

It’s been stated that two-thirds of Americans don’t drink enough water – even when they aren’t training or working out strenuously. With all the cardio, calisthenics and sweat loss that happens in a boxing gym, water is even more important. Plus, it can be difficult to differentiate between hunger and thirst at times, so drinking water throughout the day (at the very least, with every meal) helps to curb snacking.

5. Get a good night’s sleep.

Sleep helps your body restore itself and it has a huge impact on your energy level throughout the day. If you don’t get enough rest, your body’s leptin (a hormone that regulates energy) levels can decrease and cause food cravings.

Do you have any additional tips to sticking to your boxing diet? Let us know in the comments!

Life: Unboxed. Hit My First Weight Loss Goal!

This last week marked my 5th Week of boxing training, and the week before we started weekly weigh-ins. Our initial weight loss goal was 4-5 pounds (in a week!). Sounds crazy, but it was mostly water weight. The problem was that a week later I had lost a total of half a pound. It was a bit of a letdown, but Kwame assured me that sometimes it takes a little longer for your metabolism to adjust to a new diet and workout regimen.

He also noted that he was going to “turn our workout up”, which I could only interpret as “get ready to get your ass kicked”. True to his word, our workouts started including more sprints, running stairs (terrifying for someone who regularly trips over her own feet), and lots more weight training.

When last Friday rolled around, I was a little nervous that I wasn’t going to hit my goal, but lo and behold I got on the scale and had dropped three (3) pounds (!).  I can’t tell you how awesome it feels to put on a pair of pants that didn’t quite fit seven days ago and have them fit perfectly a week later. Amazing.

I’ve still got a long way to go before I hit my ultimate goal, but Kwame assures me that I should be there in 4 months, which is kind of mind boggling.

The best part of all of this though is that three weeks ago, I was pushing myself to show up to the boxing gym. Now, I’m looking forward to my sessions and have bumped them up from three times a week to four. That, and I’ve learned how to throw a pretty decent punch (though by the looks of my knuckles, you’d think that I’d been getting roughed up each week).