Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Drink 5 glasses of water every day. What you'll find is that your more likely to drink less pop. You will also probably find yourself eating less food as thirst is often times misinterpreted as hunger.. So instead of reaching for a pop, reach for a glass of water and if you still want the pop, go ahead. Eventually a good habit will replace the habit of reaching for a pop.
Take the stairs whenever possible. Something small and positive that will start to get your mindset into looking for opportunities to exercise.
So there are two easy examples of how to think of your steps in a positive way that are small and manageable that will go towards a bigger goal. So good luck with this years resolutions.
Sunday, December 28, 2008
The second book I just finished over Christmas break was Outliers, by Malcom Gladwell. Gladwell previous books, The Tipping Point and Blink are great reads as well. Outliers might be the most intersting and thought provoking book I've read in recent years. It should be required reading for teachers, coaches and parents. The whole book talks about success and why some people achieve it and others don't. It delves into the classic American myth of the self made millionare and rags to riches success story. One of the more mind opening chapters deals with the concept of the 10,000 hour rule. How when people hit it, they usually obtain significant success in their chosen field. Imagine 10,000 hours playing the violin or hitting a golf ball. Now the book doesn't deny that smarts and talent and ability are not neccessary, they are. But along with that, 10,000 hours are needed for that talent and ability to rise above the rest and truly shine.
So the quesiton is how are you spending your time. What are you putting your 10,000 hours towards? It's a genuinly fun book to read that gets you thinking about possibilities instead of limitations.
Friday, December 26, 2008
1. Snatch grip deadlift off a 2-4" block. Perhaps the best at improving 10 meter sprint times
2. Box Squatting
4. Good morning variations
5. Pull throughs
6. Long Reaching lunges
8. Glute ham
9. Reverse Hyper (control the eccentric)
10. Olympic Lifts (of course)
So here are 10 exercises to add into your routine to improve the Posterior Chain.
Friday, December 19, 2008
Monday, December 8, 2008
Friday, December 5, 2008
1. Irradiation is pretty cool. Basically it's getting your whole body tense to do a lift, even if its not "normaly" called for. For example squeeze a captains of crush gripper with your left hand while you do a single arm dumbell snatch with your right. You will be able to do more weight because of the tension you have generated.
2. B vitamins are helpful after a night of drinking and German beer is pretty good.
3. Partner assisted single leg glute bridge. I came up with this with a few of the bobsled athletes. Works amazing. Hook your hands together and bend down in a squat position. Have the athlete lie on the floor with their heel in your hooked hands. Have them press up as in a normal glute bridge. Not only is there a greater range of motion for the hip extension, you will be able to feel how much force they push with. Compare the left vs the right side and you will be able to tell which glute needs more activation work.
4. Some type of barbell rollout or ab rollout should be in everyones strength training program.
5. Always check the external obliques with any foot/calf injury. The new gait after time will build up adhesions there especially if a protective boot is used.
6. Not sure how to address it, but the short head of the biceps femoris is crucial in maintaining hamstring health. There are different nerve innervations then to the long head. Something I'm thinking over.
7. I'm a lucky guy to get to travel Europe with a sports team. Sometimes you just have to be aware of your blessings.
Monday, December 1, 2008
-Al Oerter Four time Olympic Gold Medalist
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Saturday, November 8, 2008
A great exercise to add in your tool bag. Really targets the VMO, a muscle notoriously weak on many individuals. For knee health it's imperative to keep this muscle strong and firing. This muscle along with keeping the glute med. strong will keep cyclist and runners from developing IT band problems.
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Sunday, November 2, 2008
Looking back with the knowledge base I've built up. I know bilateral pain often comes from SI Joint/lumbar spine being misaligned. If it's just one foot, often times the medial plantar nerve is adhesed. You will need a trained manual therapist to find this. I use Active Release Technique. But first start with the simple steps.
So here are a few treatment strategies. Roll your arch on a golf ball. This will help break up any adhesion's that may have developed in the muscle and ligament. Your body is all connected. Rolling the arch will actually even increase your hamstring flexibility! Do towel crunches with your toes. Pull the towel towards you using only your toes. This will strengthen your toe flexors. Stretch the calves religiously and roll your calves on a lacrosse or tennis ball. Remember your body is all connected. Try these strategies for 2 weeks. If your pain hasn't decreased substantially, find a soft tissue specialist. I see plantar foot pain all the time at our practice in downtown Grand Rapids. There is a lot of relief out there, go find it!
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Monday, October 20, 2008
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Here is a pretty good exercise and a video off of youtube. This band pull-apart works the posterior deltoid and is a good warm up exercise for any type of upper body exercise. I always throw this into the warm ups for the Grand Rapids Rugby team when they come into our gym to train. Think about pulling the shoulder blades down and back and keep the thumbs towards the ceiling.
Saturday, October 11, 2008
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Fat requires a large amount of blood supply in the form of tiny capillaries compared to an equal amount of lean muscle mass which is supplied by larger vessels. This puts a strain on the cardiovascular system.
Thursday, October 2, 2008
1. Chewing produces more saliva which helps to break down food.
2. Food travels down the esophagus and into the....
3. Stomach (here acid and enzymes converts food into a type of paste)
4. Pyloric Valve....this keeps the acid from coming back up.
Digestion takes place in 1 to 4 hours. Carbs leave the stomach first, then protein, then fat.
5. Nutrients enter the Duodenum, which is the first part of the
6. Small Intestine
7. Pancreas ...enzymes from here and the duodenum complete the rest of digestion.
8. Liver....produces Bile and is secreted by the
9. Gall bladder. This assists with fat digestion and absorption.
11. Ilium These two have twenty feet of absorptive tissue. These two sections have many folds called villi and finger like projections on the villi called microvilli. They provide over 820 sq. ft. of absorptive capabilities.....the size of a tennis court.
From there, nutrients are shipped off to your liver for further processing, then to cells, which create and store glucose, amino acids, and fatty acids.
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
2. Brain actually uses lactate for fuel during exercise not glucose. How cool is that? Carbs are looking less and less important. Score one for the protein fat camp.
3. Intervals have once again beaten the socks off of LSD ( long slow death...sorry....long slow distance) when comparing fat loss. Instead of running a mile, try running 8x200 with appropriate rest intervals, if fat loss is your goal.
4. If you keep your glutes strong and your hip flexors loose, 90% of low back problems will be resolved or never come to fruition.
5. Having rotator cuff problems? Internal and External rotations with a light band for 3x12 will not resolve the issue. Strengthen the scapular stabilizers. The scapulae is the answer for most shoulder problems!
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
An example of an exercise that will recruit and strengthen the glute med. A primary hip abductor. Keep this strong and I.T. band problems will start to dissapear.
I.T. band pain usually manifests as intense lateral knee pain. I have seen many runners and cyclist in Grand Rapids have IT band pain. As the hip abductors lose their ability to control pelvic stability. The body recruits the I.T. band to help. As the I.T. band gets tighter and tighter it gets to the point where it rubs the lateral condyle every repetition on a run or bike. So keep the Glute Med. strong and the body won't recruit the I.T. band as a hip stabilizer.
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Ron is from our very own Grand Rapids, MI. He sets a new record and proves once again that age is just a number. He owns Beckwiths Gym. Located on the corner of Division and 28th street behind the old bowling alley, come check it out. The gym has a great lifting atmosphere.
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Thursday, September 18, 2008
From a few posts back, you know that I'm a big believer in keeping the bar off the spine and limiting the amount of spinal compression. Front Squating is a great alternative. Unfortunately front squatting is hard! Thats why most people will never do it. You can't use as much weight so the ego takes a hit. It can feel like your slowly choking yourself and most peoples wrists aren't that flexible to even get in the position. I learned this tip from my buddy Cameran Gardner a few years back while we were both training at the Olympic Training Center in Lake Placid, NY. Cameran is a strength coach and firefighter in New Jersey. If you tie wrist straps around the bar you can then use them for leverage and not worry about wrist or elbow flexability becoming a limiting factor. Talk about a world of differnece.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
I can't believe that this is a real commercial. All natural? The last time I checked HFCS was chemically made and couldn't be found in nature. With the surplus of "grade 2 corn," HFCS was one byproduct they came up with to help reduce the bulging grain surplus. It's cheaper then sugar. It's also one of the leading caused of childhood obesity. This is some of the most blatant propaganda I've ever heard.
Monday, September 15, 2008
I first came across the concept of mobilty vs stability from strength coach Mike Boyle, not at chiropractic school. First kudos to coach Boyle, and second shame on my school. The body is basically broken down into segments that alternate between mobility and stability. If you lose one, you jeopardize the other. For example if you lose ankle mobility you put the stability of the knee in jeopardy. Lose hip mobility, lose lumbar stability. Lose thoracic mobility, jeopardize scapulo-humeral stability.
One of the first things I try to bring back to great function at Train Out Pain Chiropractic in Grand Rapids, is thoracic mobilization. Both threw chiropractic adjustments, soft tissue work and in smart exercises. Here is a great drill that coach Boyle demonstrates to increase thoracic mobility. A common flaw in today's flexed forward, seated, crunch heavy society. Coach Boyle has taped two tennis balls together in the video. Enjoy
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Video courtesy of Joe Defranco. Inverted Rows are a great exercise for developing the scapula retractors, balancing the shoulder girdle from all the pressing and increasing core stability. A progression would be to wear a weighted vest or go to an unstable surface such as a swiss ball instead of the bench, or pulling from blast straps. This is an exercise I use a lot with the Grand Rapids Rugby team. This will go a long way in helping prevent shoulder dislocaitons. Give these a try.
Monday, September 8, 2008
Have someone check your lateral profile. If your ear is in front of your humeral head. You have forward head posture. Chances are you have tight cervical extensors. Levator scapulae, splenius muscles group and as a result also tight subocipital groups. This can lead to headaches, trigger points and adhesion's throughout the muscle groups. I always check this when evaluating a neck/shoulder case in my practice in Grand Rapids. I also have them look to the ceiling. If they again can't get the ear behind the shoulder. The patient is in a for a lot of health problems stemming from the neck.
You can stretch the posterior neck like crazy and still not get the total desired results you want. Persistent back of the neck pain may still result. The problem is that even if you stretch like crazy, the neck still has to stabilize itself. So muscles are recruited that should not be. When the head is forward, those muscles that are tight are acting as guide wires and trying to pull the head back.
Enter the cervical flexors. The longus colli and longus capitus are two key muscles that lie on the front of the cervical vertebrae. These two muscles are notoriously turned off and weak. They help stabilize the neck. Without there activation the extensors are left to do to much work. If you have ever suffered a whiplash accident. These two muscles tend to be inhibited and weak.
One easy way to get these muscles back firing is the simple double chin exercise. Stand tall, and slowly retract the head so that it appears you have a double chin. Hold for two seconds and repeat for 20x, 2x a day. This will slowly start to turn these muscles back on and get them working for you.
Sunday, September 7, 2008
Congratulations to my girlfriend and all the other participants of the Reeds Lake Triathalon. It's really cool to see people out there on an early Saturday morning pushing themselves to their limits. It's called the three disciplines for a reason. Discipline and Mental toughness are vital for finishing. Most people have one discipline that is just more of a challenge for them, but when they do complete it, it's empowereing.
Congratulations to the Grand Rapids Rugby Club. They opened their season opener with a win over Detroit RFC. It's been fun getting back involved with rugby after not having played for so long. It's a brutal sport, so I hope I can help keep these guys healthy. Come check them out at Douglas Walker Park. There next home game is September 20.
Finally, congrats to all the participants in the Priority Health Classic. The Mens Pro race was quite amazing, coming down to an all out sprint at the end. It's spectacular to see a pelaton of bikes riding at 30 plus miles per hour take 90 degree turns. If you've never taken the time to watch a "crit" in person, your missing out.
Thursday, September 4, 2008
Sit on a Swiss ball. Walk forward until only the back of your head is supported on the ball. Keep the hips up by contracting the glutes. So now the only points of contract are the feet and the head. Try to hold the neck in a neutral position for 60 seconds. If you feel yourself losing the neutral position, stop the set.
Activating the long cervical extensors can help reposition C5 and C6 (two vertebrae in your neck) which inervate the biceps and a few other muscles. This will increase curling and pulling strength (it may increase biceps strength by as much as 10% according to Charles Poliquin). So next time your head off for a set of pullups, try this neck exercise and see if it doesn't have you "pulling" a few more reps.
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
I love books that make you think and that you learn a great deal, but are interesting and capture your attention. This is that kind of book. After reading this book, it will demand that at least you think of your food choices. I personally have started to attend more farmers markets and try to eat more locally.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Exercise of the week. Palloff Press. In case you didn't know, throw out the situps and crunches that are most likely leading to back pain, short rectus abdominus leading to increase in thoracic kyphosis, and virtually doing no good for the athletic population. The "core" should be trained to resist rotation. This is what it does in real life situations. You should be training your core to resist rotation around 6-8 weeks before considering moving to rotational exercises. A great exercise to help you achieve this type of strength is the Palloff Press. Try 3 sets of 12.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Sunday, August 24, 2008
Dara Torres age 41, silver medal olympian in the 50 meter. Posting a .2 sec personal best so win the silver. Oksana Chusovitina age 33, German gymnast wins silver on the vault. She routinely competes against kids half her age. Romanian marathoner Constantina Tomescu age 38, wins gold in the marathon. French Cyclist Jeannie Longo missed the podium by 2 seconds. This was her seventh olympics. Yes, 7, she was just shy of turning 50. Finally there was USA Pole Vaulter Jeff Hartwig age 40 became the oldest member of USA track and field to compete in the olympic games.
All have great stories. All have taken care of themselves. Hopefully they have shown the world that performance doesn't have to decrease with age. Smart training and recovery can keep you at the top.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Charles Poliquin one of the leading strength coaches in the country has a concept called structural balance. For example, if you press 100 lb's a certain percentage of this you should be able to pull. One of these tests is for the rotatore cuff, in particular the external rotators, infraspinatous and teres minor. Poliquin states that you should be able to do 8 strict reps on the side lying external rotations with a dumbell with 9% of your maximum bench press. So if you bench 350 lbs, you should be able to do 8 reps with around 32 lbs. If you can't your rotator cuff strength is deficient and you are setting yourself up for injury. So try it and see how you do. You may find that bringing up the smaller muscles will lead to bigger gains in the long term and along the way keep you injury free.