As a fitness coach I have had people ask what they can do more of to improve their health and fitness. Many people listen to suggestions surrounding strength training and nutrition, but flexibility training and recovery techniques are often dismissed. It is however, the balance of functional training, nutrition and recovery that allows us to reach optimal results.
I often say that it is our job as fitness instructors to guide you about when to push through and when to back off. Flexibility and recovery exercises are what help us unwind the tightened and damaged muscles to help us heal and move forward.
Here’s a quick Do & Don’t list for localized icing and ice baths.
Local icing for injury recovery helps decrease pain and inflammation, and enhances healing.
Let me start with little something written in the early 1900’s by American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr. You may know it:
God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.
Ah yes, The Serenity Prayer. When I was a kid I used to obnoxiously sing it as I ran around my grandparents’ house. It was prominently displayed on the kitchen wall so I read it more times than I can count. Who knew what a truth it would become as I got older? Perhaps it provided a subconscious influence.
Day after day I talk to people about goals, challenges, great experiences and general life topics. It’s very clear that we tend to gravitate toward fixing, resolving, or simply hyper focusing on life elements we have little control over. Yet, we often overlook the areas in which we have absolute control.
Where in your life are you holding onto the first line of the message? Do you find it difficult to let...
Fear, ego, pride, and discomfort….and the list goes on. Wow! There are so many reasons to not do something, right? Staying in our box of comfort is just that, comfortable. Getting uncomfortable, however, is a necessary part of our own personal growth, and oftentimes helps us overcome long-held judgments.
I was reflecting on an occasion when I was working with a personal training client who told me all of the reasons he thought an exercise we were doing was dumb. I assure you that he was putting forth effort on par with his enthusiasm. “It’s not like I’m getting anything out of this anyway,” he said. So I replied, “Do you think you’d get more out of it if you tried with more than minimum interest?”
After acknowledging and honoring his dislike of the activity (which was a variation of side shuffling down the floor with resistance), and further understanding he felt ridiculous doing it because it wasn’t “guy-like” in...
As summer approaches it’s hard to resist the pull of the ocean or lakefront and the desire to run/walk on the sand. From mindfulness to fitness, waterfront activities provide many benefits.
1. Less is More
Even if you live near the water, start with beach runs about once per week so your body can adapt. Short runs may not even be noticed until the next day because of all the tiny stabilizer muscles your body is now using. 30 minutes or less is a great starting point.
2. Packed or Unpacked?
Though you might think that softer sand is better, a firmly packed or wet sand is best and can help prevent injury. Even with firmly packed sand it is loose enough to let your feet sink in, and give you some instability and resistance without creating overuse problems from trying to remain stable.
3. Barefoot is Okay
Here’s your chance to run barefoot without the impact provided by road running. We were designed to run barefoot on turf, after all. That said, since you don’t...
I’ve been writing weekly blog posts for a long time, and creating various motivational memes as well to accompany those posts or to stand alone. You might receive them in your inbox, read them on my website or on Thrive Global where I am a contributor, or maybe on one of the many social media platforms we have these days. It’s not enough to want to lift and inspire those around us anymore; it’s about posting and clicking and sharing and so on.
Frankly, keeping up can be exhausting. It is for me at least. Other thought leaders may think I’m crazy for admitting it and prefer to convey a high level of constant attention, focus and enthusiasm. I on the other hand prefer to be authentic about it. I’m not an automaton and sometimes I want to completely disconnect from media outlets.
I enjoy connecting with my clients, however I may coach them, as just another person. For example, last week I told a couple of fitness clients that my mind wanted to eat...
Making good decisions by considering multiple perspectives, pros & cons, and intellectual and emotional input is awesome. But do you ever find yourself ruminating for what seems like an eternity? We always need to make choices, and very few are all good or all bad. Hopefully you’ll see the lesson or pattern in whatever you choose, but you have to choose.
You may not be where you want to be, but that doesn’t have to stop you from opening your mind and energy to it. It all starts with you. You have that power and potential!
Do you want to be athletic? Act like an athlete. Find that “can do” attitude inside of you. Eat well, rest well, stop starting over…
Do you like being around knowledgeable people? Be a lifelong learner. It doesn’t all come from schooling…read, ask questions, get your hands dirty, watch learning channels.
Do you want your small business to become a big business? Act like a big business owner. Schedule meetings for yourself, set goals, write out your vision, core values and principals. Create job descriptions and expectations for employees, etc.
Are you tired of having negative people in your life? Remove yourself from them and look for the good in people and the positives around you. Misery loves company, right? And positive people can only be around so...
I recently re-heard an old fable that I really like and want to share it with you because I think it is such a valuable lesson that we can all be reminded of every now and again. For example, we hear time and time again during election cycles that a vote doesn't matter so why bother anyway. Or how it doesn't matter if you help with something because you are just a single person making a small contribution. Everything we do either makes a direct impact or reminds someone that they can contribute in their own way.
I ask you to look back in your life and think of the single moments that meant something to you, whether it be a kind word from a person, help you didn’t expect and so on. Remember, you can make those moments for other people, too.
Without further delay here is the fable I want to share with you. I bet you've heard it. It's about a boy and starfish on the beach, and has been told in various versions throughout the years.
One day an older man was walking along the...
Too often people look at dining out and vacation eating as a free-for-all. But I’m here to tell you it is not adjacent to the life you live, it is part of it. If you are truly committed to living a healthier lifestyle, clean, lean, balanced food choices must extend outside of the home, too.
People have a hard enough time eating well at home without picking all night, mindless snacking in front of the television or cooking what is quickest in their minds, even if making a vegetable and protein only takes a few more minutes.
As if eating at home isn’t challenging enough, dining out can be nearly impossible. The first line of defense against restaurant food is to simply not go. However, I’m a realist so I’ve decided to give you some tips on dining out.
In the next month or so I’ll have the privilege of speaking to the Boys and Girls Club as one of their Role Model speakers. If you don’t know much about the organization it has been around since 1860 and has more than 4,000 affiliate clubs throughout the United States and its territories. According to the club, its mission is:
“To enable all young people, especially those who need us most, to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens. Club programs and services promote and enhance the development of boys and girls by instilling a sense of competence, usefulness, belonging and influence."
My wife once told me that one of the reasons she liked me was my ongoing quest for self-improvement. While I have plenty to go, I have come very far. For those who know me, you know that it is my purpose to help others find that same desire and help guide them however I can, whether directly or by giving references or suggestions for them to follow up...