Category Archives: WELLNESS/FITNESS

Avoid back pain – lifting tips to help work around the house without saying “Ouch”

Lifting Core

MARCH 2016 – It is that time of year again! Time for lifting boxes, sorting through the garage, washing the windows, mopping the floor, cleaning under the rugs and finding the change under the couch.

Nothing like spring cleaning.

This translates to lots of lifting, bending and picking up. These are all things that can aggravate your back.

Focus on body composition to succeed with New Year’s weight loss

body composition bod pod

JANUARY 2016 – Millions will make a New Year’s resolution to reduce weight and become more fit.  But, virtually no one thinks about the quality or nature of their weight loss. They don’t focus on body composition.  Most simply don’t understand when we drop weight based solely on calorie restriction, we don’t just lose fat.  Muscle mass declines as well. 

Body composition metrics matter more as a fitness measure than weight

Body Composition

DECEMBER 2015 – The importance of body composition as a true measure of fitness and health has exploded in recent years.

The amount of muscle and body fat we each carry has become increasingly important in identifying peak fitness.  In fact, the NFL now sets up 6 BOD PODs at the NFL Combine every year.  They test the athletes to determine muscle mass and body fat.

Stop rolling your IT Band

IT-band

NOVEMBER 2015 – I’m always surprised by the number of runners who say things like “I have tight IT bands, but it is okay because I foam roll them.”

The first problem is the acceptance it is okay to have a chronically ‘tight’ tissue. Under normal circumstances no tissue should hurt or cause discomfort all the time.

The second problem is the idea that massaging what hurts until the end of time is better than actually fixing the cause of the pain.

The IT band, or Iliotibial band, is a strong fibrous stretch of connective tissue that runs from the outside of the hip, down the lateral part of the thigh and attaches to the tibia bone just below the knee.

Assessing body movement to treat pain

SFMA

NOVEMBER 2015 – How well do you move? Do you ever think about it? What, are you supposed to? Yes, and well, no.

Movement or how you move is usually automatic, we really don’t think about it. We do notice when we are throwing a ball and feel pain in our shoulder, or feel pain in the lower back as you get up after sitting.

Pain is a warning sign something is not moving or working correctly.

BOD POD measures body composition

Bod-Pod

NOVEMBER 2015 – Does muscle really weigh more than fat? The quick answer is, yes. By volume, muscle weighs approximately 18 percent more than fat.

The 600 human body muscles make up 40 percent of body weight. Muscle, along with bones, skin, organs and water make up lean body mass.

The rest is fat.

Yet ironically, most people when standing on a scale only think about fat. They think about losing fat when reducing weight.

Worse, they don’t understand shedding pounds by dieting only and without participating in weight training to maintain and build muscle, they aren’t just losing fat. They are also losing muscle.

Without scientific measurement, there’s no way to know how much muscle and fat, we lose.

You don’t have to play tennis to have a tennis elbow

tennis-elbow

SEPTEMBER 2015 – You’ve probably heard of or know someone who has had tennis elbow.  Despite its prevalence, few people have a good understanding of what tennis elbow really is or how to treat it.

What’s especially confusing is despite the name, most people who develop tennis elbow do so without ever picking up a tennis racquet. Think about it, when was the last time you heard of a Serena Williams or Novak Djokovic missing a match due to tennis elbow?

Instead, tennis elbow is much more likely to occur in someone, like you or me, and it is often completely unrelated to sport participation.  

In pain? Treat it with decompression therapy

spinal-decompression

SEPTEMBER 2015 – Spinal decompression therapy sounds terrifying. Mention that it is an advanced form of spinal traction, and many people have visions of torture devices.

In reality, this new therapy doesn’t occur in a dungeon. It’s a new, non-surgical alternative for relieving low-back pain, neck pain and radiating arm and leg pain.

Can sleep give sports teams an advantage?

Sleep-ZzZz

AUGUST 2015 – Though we are learning about problems created by concussion in sports, we know virtually nothing about the sleep disorders those concussions can cause.

What do we know about sleep and sports? Everyone “knows” athletes tend to do better after a good night’s sleep.  But what’s the data?

A 1991 study showed sleep loss hurt a cyclist’s performance, and it did it by making the cyclist work harder, and get less for the energy expended, by causing more anaerobic metabolism, and increasing lactate production.

Guidelines to avoid heat exhaustion and heat stroke

Beat-the-Heat

AUGUST 2015 – This is the time of year so many fall sports begin practicing. This is exciting long as you are careful with how hot it is outside.

Football gets the most attention about heat exhaustion injuries, but there are plenty of other sports teams out there practicing. All athletes need to be mindful of their condition of their body in the heat.