Posts tagged “Arthur Hsu

You be the judge?

The one thing I have noticed throughout my career as a personal trainer, fitness professional, and educator/presenter, is how the public, and even worse my peers pass judgment so arrogantly quick and with reckless ignorance. This is something that I am genuinely concerned about, because it effects my profession, and it’s growth or lack thereof. I will also ask you the reader to see if you can find similarities in our society, but more importantly, do you see it in yourself?

Training at health club again has exposed my peers and members to my training style using science, systems, and tools that I have learned and accumulated through the years. For me it has been a process and evolution through countless hours of self discovery mixed with continuing education, seminars, workshops, etc. Never settling for what I know as good enough, I’ve been able to see, do, teach, and learn things that I wish everyone knew. The flip side of this is that this has lead to members and peers judging and ridiculing what I do and with what I do it with. It’s as if they feel that my  choice of movement and tools is a personal attack on them and their loved ones. Never, have they considered coming up to me and asking, hey Arthur, I saw you doing this with that, why? I would’ve loved to talk about my passion and I would’ve been appreciative of their curiosity. Another part of me is also thinking, how can my peers not breakdown what I’m doing and see the science and benefits behind it. And if they did, they could educate their clients, and an agent of change is born.

I’ll admit I’m guilty of this as well, albeit a long time ago. It took someone to judge me the first time I did something different.  I can remember the first time I started movement preps in 2004, the first time I wore Vibrams into the gym, the first time I did an out of the box exercise. The way it made me feel was awful. It spawned me to think differently. With some words of wisdom I’ve been able to rise above, here’s some examples;

“Logic will get you from A to B, imagination will take you everywhere”

Never limit yourself because of others limited imagination. Never limit others because of your limited imagination”

“Great minds will always be violently opposed by mediocre thinkers”

“It’s what you learn after you know it all that counts.”

It is because of my personal experiences and quotes like these, that allow me to take a different approach from what I initially wanted to do, which would make me come off as unprofessional, as well as make them more steadfast in their philosophy, and more resistant to change.

I believe that their mindset and quickness to judge is a combination of fear with lack of education. Because if “knowledge is power” than lack of knowledge is weakness that causes fear in those in the presence of power (knowledge). Side note: that is complete bullshit in my eyes. Knowledge should lead to humility in the sense that it shows how much; a) you don’t know and b) how much there really is left to learn. Failure to grasp this is an excuse. Therefore failures make excuses as to why they can’t, and can’t never accomplished anything.

I always sincerely thank those who take the time out of their lives to educate me. I let them know that their efforts are not wasted as it provokes my curiosity to learn more. The best part is that my profession allows me the platform to share what I have had the privilege to learn to both my peers and my clients.

The moral of this post is don’t judge, instead try to understand. There’s less prejudice and more education involved. If you can’t figure it out then ask, the worst that can happen is you learned something, good or indifferent.  Can you imagine a world that’s not quick to judge, but eager to learn? It all starts with you!

AH


A change of scenery

I am going to break away from my usual educational blog, and write about what’s been going on the past two months. Since March 6th. 2012 I have been working at Lifetime Athletics in Summerlin. I am still a part of ATP with Hayley, the only difference is, I train clients in a new location and I no longer teach the weekend boot camp classes. It’s been a lot of fun training out of LTA (Lifetime Athletics), as I work with a great bunch in the Personal training Dept. The freedom to train according to my philosophies, and using systems, sciences, and tools that I feel benefit my clients and I the most has been a major part of my professional happiness that hasn’t been there for quite some time ;)

Lifetime is very supportive and well ahead of the curve in terms of allowing their trainers to explore the many, many systems, sciences, and tools that are out there in the fitness industry. I feel that I can still grow and learn in this environment and that in of itself is why I enjoy working there. Since my time at LVAC, I have learned a great deal, and to be able to showcase what I have been privileged to learn with new members, clients, and most importantly my fellow peers (trainers) has been very exciting. I get to see what other trainers are into, what their philosophies, and training styles are like. I get to see what members and clients like to do, what drives them, what their perception of our industry as a whole is, and most importantly where they think fitness is and should be going.

If you are a personal trainer, I feel you have to love what you do, and love where you do it. Your environment should make you want to wake up a go do your thing, whatever and wherever that may be. It should motivate you to improve yourself everyday and people should feel your passion, and positive vibe near and from afar. Most importantly, you should be happy. Because if you not in a good place, then you can’t help anyone get there either.

AH


Foot Fetish Part 3

Topic: Myths about barefoot running

Intended audience: Runners

Essay Map: Educating yourself about the facts of running barefoot (if that’s your goal), will allow you to safely transition from thicker soled running shoes.

I’m back with part 3 of Foot Fetish. In the second post, we went over two reasons why barefoot running could be detrimental to people who are overweight, or have bad knees. In part 3 we will look at orthotics and plantar fasciitis.

Once again, you’ll be reading direct quotes from Nicholas A. Campitelli, DPM, FACFAS. I will place my views, and opinions in underlined italics with my initials AH.

“Barefoot running, minimalist running and natural running are all terms that describe running in a manner that allows our foot to function the way it was designed (or has evolved). This happens through the use of little or no shoe at all. Many runners suffering from chronic injuries are adopting this way of running and are experiencing relief of symptoms to find themselves running with enjoyment and a more relaxing form.”

The key word is many not all. AH

I too have been cured of a running injury, which I suffered from for over eight years after transitioning my gait to that of a “barefoot” runner. Without further ado, here are the 10 myths of barefoot running.”

 

Cured is a provocative word to use, as it might lead readers to assume barefoot running will cure them as it did the author. As a DPM I’ll guess that he might have started some sort of regimen to help in his ”curing” i.e. flexibility, mobility, and/or strengthening exercises He also could have added a warm up ”movement prep” and “cool down” to his routine. AH

 

How Do Orthotics And Plantar Fasciitis Come Into Play With Barefoot Running?

I can’t do barefoot running because I need to wear my orthotics. Orthotics has become more over-utilized in the practice of podiatry then ever before. It is very common for me to see runners present in my office with plantar fasciitis, a normal arch, cushioned running shoes and orthotics they have worn. When running barefoot or in a minimalist shoe, we do not need to control motion at the rear-foot because heel striking is not occurring and “excessive pronation,” as described by Root, does not occur. While we have numerous studies that do not support the use of orthotics for running injuries alone, it becomes a challenge to convince the patient they are not needed.

I have plantar fasciitis so barefoot running would be too painful. This article was not intended to discuss the pathomechanics or treatment options of plantar fasciitis. However, we are anecdotally seeing resolution of symptoms in those who adopt this style of running. One potential explanation is the development in strength we see to the intrinsic musculature, specifically the abductor hallucis muscle, which is a primary supporter of the arch.

Another overlooked phenomenon is the fact that the majority of running shoes place your ankle into plantar-flexion. This forces the body to compensate by increasing lumbar lordosis and increasing pressure to the heel as opposed to having more even distribution throughout the foot.

As a Fitness Professional, I am faced with these two obstacles all the time. What can I do? Well, I can’t diagnose, as that’s not in a Fitness Professionals scope of practice. I will not challenge or criticize the clients Dr. or who ever prescribed the orthotics. If the client chose their treatment on their own I would not criticize them either. All that would do if create a wall and devalue us as professions, not to mention coming off appearing like a know it all, and we all know those are the ones that really don’t know anything at all.

I would instead offer other options, modalities of exercise if you will, self-myofascial release with a tennis ball (soft) and slowly progress to a baseball (medium), then a golf ball (hard). Vibration training i.e. Power Plate would be a good way to “melt” the connective tissues beneath our feet (hydrating), while at the same time, triggering muscle contractions in the foot, which would strengthen the foot. This would improve our natural arch support and likely reduce plantar fasciitis. If you work with the client as a “guide on the side” versus ordering your clients “sage on the stage” you’ll empower them, which will make them more open to various methods of exercises, some of which might be the “one’ that finally helps your client overcome their discomfort. AH

 

 


Foot Fetish part 2

Topic: Myths about barefoot running

Intended audience: Runners

Essay Map: Educating yourself about the facts of running barefoot (if that’s your goal), will allow you to safely transition from thicker soled running shoes.

I’m back with part 2 of Foot Fetish. In the first post, we went over the a few perceptions on barefoot running like how it leads to stress fractures, and how if you have flat feet, you’ll need support. In part 2 we will look at weight, and knee issues.

Once again, you’ll be reading direct quotes from Nicholas A. Campitelli, DPM, FACFAS. I will place my views, and opinions in underlined italics with my initials AH.

“Barefoot running, minimalist running and natural running are all terms that describe running in a manner that allows our foot to function the way it was designed (or has evolved). This happens through the use of little or no shoe at all. Many runners suffering from chronic injuries are adopting this way of running and are experiencing relief of symptoms to find themselves running with enjoyment and a more relaxing form.”

The key word is many not all. AH

I too have been cured of a running injury, which I suffered from for over eight years after transitioning my gait to that of a “barefoot” runner. Without further ado, here are the 10 myths of barefoot running.”

 

Cured is a provocative word to use, as it might lead readers to assume barefoot running will cure them as it did the author. As a DPM I’ll guess that he might have started some sort of regimen to help in his ”curing” i.e. flexibility, mobility, and/or strengthening exercises He also could have added a warm up ”movement prep” and “cool down” to his routine. AH

 

I weigh too much. While this is a common excuse to not run, being overweight is not reason enough not to run barefoot or in a minimalist shoe. In 2010, Leiberman and co-workers were able to demonstrate that habitually unshod runners were able to generate smaller collision forces than shod heel strikers.6 In other words, by forefoot striking, we decrease the force that transmits through the lower extremity, thereby reducing torque forces to the ankle, knee and hip joints.7 Clearly, we can see that if people weigh 250 lbs., they would be placing more force through their joints by heel striking then by landing on their forefoot”.

I agree that you can decrease the force transmitted through the body by changing your strike, however I believe the writer is overlooking a critical component. If someone is overweight, odds are they have not been exercising regularly, could be sedentary, but most importantly not conditioned to start a running program. When I say unconditioned, that could mean that the individual might not have the cardiovascular endurance of more importantly the muscles, and connective tissues of the body lack the strength and endurance to handle any type of force transmitted through the body. AH.

Would Bad Knees Inhibit Barefoot Running?

“I have bad knees. Osteoarthritis of the knee is a common concern among many runners, especially older individuals who have run the majority of their lives. There are many theories as to why running is bad or even good for your knees. So many in fact that elliptical machines were invented to be used as a form of exercise similar to running without causing excess pressure to the joints.8 However, these elliptical machines do not reproduce anatomical motions and an in vivo force analysis reveals there is less force with walking than with an elliptical trainer”.9-11

You can’t out run time, age will eventual catch us all, and osteoarthritis is an age related condition. I have not read the study on elliptical machines versus walking, however from personal experience, both are less stressful to my body than running and the elliptical machine can get me to train all my cardio zones better than walking. What I would suggest though is that you may want to talk with your doctor in regards to supplementation like joint support. As a personal trainer what I would recommend if you haven’t yet, is to start a mobility/flexibility and strength program. I would emphasize the ankles and hips, because allowing full ROM in those respective areas could take some of the workload (force transmission) away from the knee, and transmit it throughout the rest of the body like we are designed to do. AH.

 

“As I noted previously, we know that ground reactive forces are greater with heel strike in comparison to unshod or barefoot runners who adapt a more forefoot strike pattern.6 Numerous studies have demonstrated higher ground reactive forces and mechanical stresses to the knee while running in traditional running shoes as opposed to barefoot.12-13 A recent study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine looked at patients with knee osteoarthritis over 12 months and found no difference between wearing a lateral wedge orthotic versus a control flat insert.14 Similarly, a systematic review of literature demonstrates that external knee adduction moment and pain associated with knee osteoarthritis is higher in individuals wearing sneakers in comparison to those who do barefoot walking”.15

 

When I complete the 10 Myths of barefoot Running, I will post all of Nicholas’s bibliography for referencing.

 

Reference:

Campitelli A. Nicholas (2012 January) Tackling the 10 Myths of Barefoot Running. Podiatry Today Volume 25 Issue1.


Foot Fetish

Topic: Myths about barefoot running.

Intended audience: Runners,

Thesis: To help runners sort through the facts and fictions of barefoot running.

Essay Map: With the proper education you can enjoy barefoot running (if that is your choice). This article will help better prepare you for the road ahead.

I stumbled across an article on Facebook, posted by Rodney Corn from Podiatry Today. The article was called “tackling the 10 myths of barefoot running”. Written by Nicholas A. Campitelli DPM, FACFAS. In the upcoming blogs, I will post sections of the article so we can digest this information a little bit at a time. This will give us time to fully digest some of the concerns that can come about from barefoot running.  I will have some input of my own which will be underlined with my initials AH.

 

“Barefoot running, minimalist running and natural running are all terms that describe running in a manner that allows our foot to function the way it was designed (or has evolved). This happens through the use of little or no shoe at all. Many runners suffering from chronic injuries are adopting this way of running and are experiencing relief of symptoms to find themselves running with enjoyment and a more relaxing form.”

The key word is many not all. AH

I too have been cured of a running injury, which I suffered from for over eight years after transitioning my gait to that of a “barefoot” runner. Without further ado, here are the 10 myths of barefoot running.”

 

Cured is a provocative word to use, as it might lead readers to assume barefoot running will cure them as it did the author. As a DPM I’ll guess that he might have started some sort of regimen to help in his ”curing” i.e. flexibility, mobility, and/or strengthening exercises He also could have added a warm up ”movement prep” and “cool down” to his routine. AH

 

Barefoot running leads to stress fractures. Without a doubt, the most common concern with barefoot or minimalist running is the development of a stress fracture. While there have been documented cases of this in the literature, stress fractures occur as a result of a change in activity without gradual adaptation and are not directly related to the shoe gear or lack thereof.1 We actually should see a decrease in the likelihood of stress fracture given the change in stride and cadence that one acquires while running barefoot.

  I bold faced this sentence, because I felt was an important statement. AH

Stress fractures occur secondary to overuse without the body having adapted adequately as proven by Wolff’s Law.3 In fact, if we adhere to Wolff’s law in theory, we should see weaker bone trabecular patterns on those wearing cushioned running shoes due to decreased intrinsic muscle strength, resulting in a proportional decrease in the force acting on the respective bone.”

Trabecular patterns: an irregular meshwork of stress and stress-related struts within a cancellous bone.

I have flat feet and I need support. Lees and Klemerman have demonstrated that there is no correlation between foot type and running injuries, specifically with a pes planus deformity.5 During barefoot running, we avoid heel striking and land more on our forefoot or midfoot. Once the forefoot strikes the ground, pronation of the entire foot begins (not isolated pronation of the subtalar joint) and continues until the point where the heel touches the ground. Arch height becomes irrelevant, as does the commonly described concept of pronation with the heel striking the ground first. With a forefoot/midfoot strike, pronation is very beneficial and helps to absorb shock.”

On top of that studies shows and research articles state that flexibility, mobility, and strength exercises can reverse flat feet as one of the causes associated with flat feet is weakened muscles and other connective tissues. AH

Reference:

Campitelli A. Nicholas (2012 January) Tackling the 10 Myths of Barefoot Running. Podiatry Today Volume 25 Issue 1.


Menage Trois ;)

Get your head out of the gutter folks! Below was a question my professor asked in my anatomy/physiology course. I thought it was worth sharing.

What are some lifestyle changes a person can make to help to improve overall health?  List at least 3 and describe the benefits of each.

In my opinion, the 3 very important factors for a positive lifestyle change in an individual to improve overall health is, weight loss, coronary artery disease, and stress. What you will probably notice is that the three components actually overlap with one another in some capacity to help in the overall health improvement in the individual suffering from one, two, or all three of these symptoms.

First we’ll discuss weight loss.  One of the most important things one can do to achieve long-term weight loss and management is to set realistic goals. It may seem obvious to set realistic weight-loss goals. But do you really know what’s realistic? Over the long term, it’s best to aim for losing 1 to 2 pounds (0.5 to 1 kilogram) a week, although initially you might lose weight more quickly than that if you make significant changes — just be sure the changes are health supporting. To lose 1 to 2 pounds a week, you need to burn 500 to 1,000 calories more than you consume each day, through a lower calorie diet and regular exercise. When you’re setting goals, think about both process and outcome goals. “Exercise regularly” is an example of a process goal, while “Lose 30 pounds” is an example of an outcome goal. It isn’t essential that you have an outcome goal, but you should set process goals because changing your processes — your habits — is a key to weight loss. Also make sure that your goals are SMART: specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-limited. An example of a SMART goal is aiming to walk for 30 minutes a day, five days a week for the next three months, and logging your results” (Mayo clinic staff 2010).

Some of the health benefits that come with reducing one’s weight are increased energy levels, lower cholesterol levels (LDL, VLDL), improved breathing, improved mobility, reduced aches and pains in joints, improve sleep, decreased risk of  “coronary artery disease”, reduce or eliminate diabetes, reduce “stress” physically, emotionally, and mentally. This can be achieved by following two simple guidelines, eating healthier foods, getting and staying active.

“Adopting a new eating style that promotes weight loss must include lowering your total calorie intake. But decreasing calories need not mean giving up taste, satisfaction or even ease of meal preparation. One way you can lower your calorie intake is by eating more plant-based foods — fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Strive for variety to help you achieve your goals without giving up taste or nutrition.

In particular, get your weight loss started by eating a healthy breakfast every day; eating at least four servings of vegetables and three servings of fruits daily; and using healthy fats, such as olive oil, vegetable oils and nut butters. In addition, cut back on sugar, choose low-fat dairy products and keep meat consumption to a 3-ounce portion (about the size of a deck of cards).

While you can lose weight without exercise, exercise plus calorie restriction can help give you the weight-loss edge. Exercise can help burn off the excess calories you can’t cut through diet alone. Exercise also offers numerous health benefits, including boosting your mood, strengthening your cardiovascular system and reducing your blood pressure. Exercise can also help in maintaining weight loss. Studies show that people who maintain their weight loss over the long term get regular physical activity” (Mayo clinic staff 2010).

Second we have coronary artery disease (CAD). The thing with CAD as with weight management is that we as individuals make the choices that affect our lives in either a positive or negative way. By making a conscious decision to make a positive change, all you ‘ll need to do to succeed is to implement it. With CAD, there are some things that we are either born with or just develop with time. We can’t choose to change it, but we can manage them i.e. age, sex, and family history. Some of the changes that we can make are sometimes the things we’re already doing to cause them such as smoking, high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, diabetes, obesity, physical inactivity, high stress, and lack of sleep. With the exception of smoking and sleeping, everything else can be controlled and managed to some extent by following the guidelines from the weight loss section. Annual check ups with your physician is all a choice you can implement to monitor your heart’s health.

“Lifestyle changes can help you prevent or slow the progression of coronary artery disease.

  •                     Stop smoking. Smoking is a major risk factor for coronary artery disease. Nicotine constricts blood vessels and forces your heart to work harder, and carbon monoxide reduces oxygen in your blood and damages the lining of your blood vessels. If you smoke, quitting is one of the best ways to reduce your risk of a heart attack.
  •                     Control your blood pressure. Ask your doctor for a blood pressure measurement at least every two years. He or she may recommend more frequent measurements if your blood pressure is higher than normal or you have a history of heart disease. The ideal blood pressure is below 120 systolic and 80 diastolic, as measured in millimeters of mercury (mm Hg).
  •                     Check your cholesterol. Ask your doctor for a baseline cholesterol test when you’re in your 20s and then at least every five years. If your test results aren’t within desirable ranges, your doctor may recommend more frequent measurements. Most people should aim for an LDL level below 130 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL), or 3.4 millimoles per liter (mmol/L). If you have other risk factors for heart disease, your target LDL may be below 100 mg/dL (2.6 mmol/L).
  •                     Keep diabetes under control. If you have diabetes, tight blood sugar control can help reduce the risk of heart disease.
  •                     Get moving. Exercise helps you achieve and maintain a healthy weight and control diabetes, elevated cholesterol and high blood pressure — all risk factors for coronary artery disease. With your doctor’s OK, aim for 30 to 60 minutes of physical activity most or all days of the week.
  •                     Eat healthy foods. A heart-healthy diet based on fruits, vegetables and whole grains — and low in saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium — can help you control your weight, blood pressure and cholesterol. Eating one or two servings of fish a week also is beneficial.
  •                     Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight increases your risk of coronary artery disease. Weight loss is especially important for people who have large waist measurements — more than 40 inches (102 centimeters) for men and more than 35 inches (89 centimeters) for women — because people with this body shape are more likely to develop diabetes and heart disease.
  •                     Manage stress. Reduce stress as much as possible. Practice healthy techniques for managing stress, such as muscle relaxation and deep breathing.

In addition to healthy lifestyle changes, remember the importance of regular medical checkups. Some of the main risk factors for coronary artery disease — high cholesterol, high blood pressure and diabetes — have no symptoms in the early stages. Early detection and treatment can set the stage for a lifetime of better heart health” (Mayo clinic staff 2010).

Last but not least we have stress management. I look as stress as a major component and precursor to a lot diseases and conditions we contract in our lives. If you click on this link: http://www.stress.org/topic-effects.htm, you’ll see the effects of stress on the human body both physically and emotionally. “There are numerous emotional and physical disorders that have been linked to stress including depression, anxiety, heart attacks, stroke, hypertension, immune system disturbances that increase susceptibility to infections, a host of viral linked disorders ranging from the common cold and herpes to AIDS and certain cancers, as well as autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis and multiple sclerosis. In addition stress can have direct effects on the skin (rashes, hives, atopic dermatitis, the gastrointestinal system (GERD, peptic ulcer, irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis) and can contribute to insomnia and degenerative neurological disorders like Parkinson’s disease. In fact, it’s hard to think of any disease in which stress cannot play an aggravating role or any part of the body that is not affected (see stress effects on the body stress diagram) or. This list will undoubtedly grow as the extensive ramifications of stress are increasingly being appreciated” (AIS 2009).

There are many ways to reduce stress, weight management and exercise can help reduce and control stress levels. Those are but only two, and I mentioned them specifically because like my intro, I stated that What you will probably notice is that the three components actually overlap with one another in some capacity to help in the overall health improvement in the individual suffering from one, two, or all three of these symptoms” (Hsu 2011).

There are also what I consider active and passive treatments to stress. Active is physically doing something to reduce stress levels, while passive is having an external component aiding in the reduction of stress. One is not necessarily better, it’s just options that suits the individual best. Just as stress is different for each of us there is no stress reduction strategy that is a panacea. Jogging and other aerobic exercises, different types of meditation, prayer, yoga and tai chi are great for many people but when arbitrarily imposed on others, prove dull, boring and stressful. There is certainly no shortage of stress relievers and in addition to the above, various progressive muscular relaxation exercises, autogenic training, deep breathing, massage therapies, visual imagery and self hypnosis practices are popular. There are also acupuncture, acupressure, biofeedback, Alexander, Reiki, Feldenkrais and other bodywork and postural techniques. Some people find that listening to music, hobbies, volunteer work, keeping a daily journal of events and how they feel, laughter, playing with pets, taking short breaks or shopping help them to relax. Others find relief for their stress related symptoms from aromatherapy, nutritional supplements like chamomile, spearmint, kava kava, adaptogens and St. John’s wort or even sitting under a pyramid. There are also prescription tranquilizers, sedatives, hypnotics, antidepressants and beta-blockers for specific complaints. In addition, a variety of cranioelectromagnetic stimulation devices have been found to be effective and safe for anxiety, insomnia and drug resistant depression. Strong emotional support from group therapy, family or friends is a powerful stress buster” (AIS 2009).

Reference:

Mayo Clinic staff. (2010 December, 18) Weight Loss: 6 strategies for success. Mayo Clinic.                                                  http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/weight-loss/HQ01625

Mayo Clinic staff. (2010 July, 2) Coronary Artery Disease. Mayo Clinic.                                                                               http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/coronary-artery-disease/DS00064/DSECTION=lifestyle%2Dand%2Dhome%2Dremedies

The American Institute of Stress. (2009) Effects of Stress. AIS.                                                                                                                                     http://www.stress.org/topic-effects.htm

The American Institute of Stress. (2009) Stress reduction, Stress relievers. AIS.                                                                                                        http://www.stress.org/topic-reduction.htm


Have a drink on me!

With the weather changing from extreme heat to colder temperatures, it is as important as ever to make sure you are properly hydrated before, during, and after you exercise. “Staying hydrated is essential for everyone, but athletes have an even greater need to maintain proper hydration. Water is the most important nutrient for life and has many important functions including regulating temperature, lubricating joints and transporting nutrients and waste throughout the body” (Quinn 2011).

What can happen through dehydration? With as little as a 2% decrease in your body weight through sweating, your heart will begin to work harder to circulate blood. Muscle cramps, dizziness, fatigue, and heat illnesses i.e. heat exhaustion and heat stroke have been known to occur. Some of the causes of dehydration include inadequate fluid intake, excessive sweating, not replacing fluids lost during and after exercise, exercising in dry extreme weather, and drinking only when thirsty.

Everyone is different when it comes to how much we sweat, how much fluids we lose through exercise, and how our hydration levels are to begin with. That being said it is difficult to provide “SPECIFIC” hydration guidelines for us to follow. Two simple assessments to see if you’re adequately hydrated are,

Monitoring urine volume output and color:

A large amount of light colored, diluted urine probably means you are hydrated; dark colored, concentrated urine probably means you are dehydrated.

Weighing yourself before and after exercise:

Any weight lost is likely from fluid, so try to drink enough to replenish those losses. Any weight gain could mean you are drinking more than you need.

How do we lose water/fluids through exercise? I’m of the opinion that we must know before hand what the environment that we are going to train in is like. We “CAN” control how we eat, sleep, move, rest and hydrate, but we can’t control the elements that Mother Nature throws our way. We are at her mercy and to an extent the same goes for our landscape (topography). Here are some things to consider,

High Altitude:

Exercising at altitude increases your fluid losses and therefore increases you fluid needs.

Temperature:

Exercising in the heat increases you fluid losses through sweating and exercise in the cold can impair you ability to recognize fluid losses and increase fluid lost through respiration. In both cases it is important to hydrate.

Sweating:

Some athletes sweat more than others. If you sweat a lot you are at greater risk for dehydration. Again, weigh yourself before and after exercise to judge sweat loss.

Exercise Duration and Intensity:

Exercising for hours (endurance sports) means you need to drink more and more frequently to avoid dehydration.

OK, so how much water and or fluids should we consume before, during, and after we exercise? If you are training regularly, you will probably need between one half and one whole ounce of water (or other fluids) for each pound of body weight per day. To determine your baseline range for water   requirements, use the following formula:

Low end of range= Body weight (lbs.) x 0.5 = (ounces of fluid/day)

High end of range=Body weight (lbs.) x 1 = (ounces of fluid/day)

For example, if you weigh 150 pounds, your approximate water requirement will be between 75 and 150 ounces each day.

When to Drink Water During Exercise:

Begin the day with a large glass of water each morning, whether it’s a training or a rest day. On training days, the following schedule works well for most athletes:

Water (Fluid) Intake Schedule

Before Exercise:

Drink two to three cups of water (16-24 oz.) within the two to three hours before your workout. Drink 8-10 fl oz. 10-15 min before exercise

Weigh yourself immediately before you begin your workout.

During Exercise:                                                        

Drink one cup (8 oz.) of water every 15 minutes.

If exercising longer than 90 minutes, drink 8-10 fl oz. of a sports drink (with no more than 8 percent carbohydrate) every 15 – 30 minutes.

After Exercise:

Weigh yourself immediately after you finish your workout.

Drink two to three cups of water (16-24 oz.) for each pound lost during exercise.

How Much Water to Drink During Endurance Exercise:

If you are exercising at a moderate to high intensity for more than 90 minutes, you will want to consume more than plain water. You need to replenish glycogen stores with easy-to-digest carbohydrate. Sports drinks can be an easy way to add the necessary energy. For longer workouts, choose a drink with 60 to 100 calories per eight ounces and consume eight to ten ounces every 15 to 30 minutes based upon your preference.

For those exercising in extreme conditions over three, four or five hours, you’ll need to replace electrolytes. A complex sports drink, NUUN tablets, or other foods will help provide the needed calories and electrolytes required for continuous performance.

“Although rare, athletes can drink too much water and suffer from hyponatremia (water intoxication). Drinking excessive amounts of water can cause a low concentration of sodium in the blood – a serious medical emergency” (Quinn 2011).

Until next time,

-Arthur-

 

Reference:

Quinn, E. (2007 December, 2) ACSM clarifies indicators for   replacement. http://sportsmedicine.about.com/cs/hydration/a/022504.htm

Quinn, E. (2011 April, 15) What to drink for proper hydration during exercise? http://sportsmedicine.about.com/od/hydrationandfluid/a/ProperHydration.htm

Quinn, E. (2011 August, 24) How much water should you drink? http://sportsmedicine.about.com/od/hydrationandfluid/qt/How-Much-Water-Should-You-Drink.htm


Fitness Designer? Part 2: Acute Variables

Six steps to a better program design

Part 2:

Explain how it serves to allow for proper progression/regression

In part one, I explained the 6-step program design model, and what it entails. In part two, I will show you how to regress and progress the Acute Variables.

1) Speed

A) Slow B) Medium C) Fast

 

2) Movement

A) Known B) Somewhat Known C) Unknown

 

3) Stability

A) Stable B) Moderately C) Dynamic

 

4) Force (weight)

A) Low B) Moderate C) High

 

5) Complexity (Movement)

A) Simple B) Moderate C) Complex

 

6) Surface

A) Stable B) Changing C) Dynamic

 

7) Base of Support

A) Wide (Stable) B) Narrow C) Varying (Movement)

 

8) Volume (Sets + Reps + Intensity)

A) Low B) Medium C) High

 

9) ROM (Range of Motion)

A) Small (Initial Range) B) Medium (Self Selected Range) C) Large (End Range)

 

All of the Acute Variables are written in “bold italic”, and the corresponding letters underneath represents there progressions; A= Beginner, B= Intermediate, and C= Advanced. How can we apply the AV (Acute Variables) to the 6-step program design? Let’s take a look, (you may need to refer back to part one of this three part article for reference, Sept. 12th post “Fitness Designer?” http://www.getatpblog.com).

Movement Performed: Squat

Client: Let’s say our client is a beginner who is new to exercise.  No health issues and no injuries. Their goal is to learn how to squat and in the future add challenges to their squat.

1) Orientation: Standing 2) Action: Squatting 3) Device: Bodyweight 4) Footprint: Neutral hip width (XXX) 5) Handprint: Anterior @ shoulder height and 6) Threshold:  Acute Variables (1-9), 1) Speed: Slow, since they are new to exercise, slowing the movement down will allow them to control their body better. There’s two sayings I particularly enjoy “Slow is smooth, and smooth becomes fast”, I heard from a friend of mine, and “Speed kills”. 2) Movement: Known, people squat everyday in some form or another. 3) Stability: Moderate, since my client doesn’t have an injury or is recovering from one, I will let ASK them to try to squat without holding on to anything.  I could always modify if their having trouble stabilizing, by having them hold on to a railing (A) Stable), or when they are ready to progress, I can have them squat down and stand up in the balls of their feet (C) Dynamic). 4) Force (weight): Low, my client will only be squatting their bodyweight (Keep in mind that the clients weight and strength level, can have a different affect on them, and can have a significant influence on their ability to control their Force (weight). 5) Complexity (movement): Simple, A basic down/up vertical drive. Moderate could be a down/up with a rotation at the top of the movement, and Complex could be a marching in place squat with a bicep curl to shoulder press. 6) Surface: Gym Floor, a nice flat stable surface. A Moderate surface could be squatting on a BOSU (blue side up), and a Complex could be on an INDO Board (on a roller). 7) Base of Support: Wide, if your base of support (Footprint) is wider than the center of gravity, you will have more stability i.e. Shoulder width. Moderate would be to have them stand with their feet closer together i.e. hip width or together. Varying could be a single leg (pistol) squat. 8) Volume: Low, maybe 2/3 sets, 5-7 reps or 30 seconds, and rest for 30 seconds to 1 minute depending on how they feel. If they had a heart rate monitor, I may go off of their zones and goals. Finally 9) ROM (range of motion): Medium (self select range), since my client has no injuries and is healthy, I will ASK them to go a low as they can without feeling any strain/pain. Unless I see something very abnormal that could result in injury, I will let my client explore their ROM.

This was just an example of how a fitness professional or a fitness enthusiast could utilize the 6-step program design, and the AV to mix up their exercise/movement program. This style of programming allows for a lot of creativity and play between the client and trainer, not to mention add a little fun to a routine. In part three, we will wrap up the 6-steps to a better program design, by putting this model into practice with various drills in view of integrated anatomy.

-Arthur-

References:

Michol Dalcourt. Institute of Motion. 6-steps to a better program design. IDEA World Fitness Conference, Los Angeles, Ca. August 2011


Fitness Designer?

This week we will begin to take a look at one of the many ways to design a program.

The reason why I say “many ways” is because there should never be in my opinion “ONE “ way to do anything.  Variety as the say is the spice of life. The program I will be discussing will come from The Institute of Motion (IoM) and it’s director Michol Dalcourt. Michol presented this concept at the 2011 IDEA World Conference as “6 steps to better program design” and he broke it down to three main objectives; (a) explain the 6-step program design model. (b)Explain how it serves to allow for proper progression/regression and (c) Put this model into practice with various drills in view of integrated anatomy. IoM (2011). In part one of my three-part breakdown, I will introduce the 6-step program design model. Allow me to preface the model by stating that the body has to constantly battle forces. “Gravity and Ground Reaction Forces (GRF) are two paramount’s we deal with everyday.”MIchol Dalcourt (2011)

How we move through those forces and how we apply them to a training program can mean the difference between progressing and regressing our fitness levels and coincidentally our health. The six main steps outlined in this program are orientation, action, device, footprint, handprint, and threshold. Let’s review briefly what each step represents and/or entails;

-Orientation: Refers to which way your body will be positioned in relation to gravity and ground i.e. standing, sitting, lying face down, face up etc.

- Action: What movement are you going to perform? What is the body doing? Are you changing levels? Are you using stationary force? Are you using locomotion?

-Device: What tools or external load are you choosing? TRX Suspension Trainers, ViPR’s, Kettlebells, Barbells, and why?

- Footprint: Refers to your stance and/or foot Action you are performing.

-Handprint: Refers to your hand position or hand Action you are performing.

-Threshold: Applying acute variables i.e. sets, reps, time, rest, weight, range of motion (ROM), speed, etc.

For the fitness professionals reading this blog try implementing this six step PDM into your own workouts first, see how you like it. Does it add a new/different dimension to your routine? Once you feel you have a basic grasp of the six steps and have practiced it, try slowly integrating the six step concept into your clients routine. Remember, “regression is a must, progression is earned” Acea Theroux (2011 TRX ITC).

In part two I will explain how the six step design model allows for proper progression /regression of our Actions.

 

-Arthur-

 

References:

Michol Dalcourt- Institute of Motion, 2011 IDEA World Fitness Conference, Los Angeles, Ca

 

Acea Theroux- TRX STC ITC Sept. 2011, Instructor Candidate.

 


Defining what we do

In my Hsu’s

It’s not the load that breaks you down, it’s the way you carry it. -Lou Holtz

Functional Training? Functionalist?

In the fitness industry, “IT” words can sell what ever it is that you want to market. One of the all time great words is “Core”. Another one that been thrown around for quite some time now is “Functional Training”. This week, I will discuss Functional Training, not to bash it or edify the term, but to simply explain it.

Functional Training:

To examine each part in an attempt to determine the role it plays in the operating of the system (body) as a whole. When any part fails, this creates a problem for the whole. These failures and/or dysfunctions upset the equilibrium of the system and could become a problem physically, emotionally, and mentally. This may negatively affect one’s behavior and lifestyle.

For the Fitness Professional, anything that impedes the body’s ability to achieve its goal is by definition “dysfunction”. The system will take care of itself as a whole first and will do so at he expense of its individual parts. It is this constant struggle between what the clients or we want (Extrinsic Goals) vs. what we or the clients needs (Intrinsic Goals), that could eventually put the health and fitness of everyone at risk.

To “Functionally Train” one must try to examine and understand how different postures, movements, behavior patterns and lifestyle choices affect the way we “Function”.

-Arthur-

Credits:

By. Harold A. Widdison and H.Richard Delany

Social Problems: Definitions, Theories, and Analysis

Chapter 1 from Annual Editions: Social Problems 10/11

37th. Edition by Finsterbusch 4


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