Author: Christina Ramirez, PT, DPT
I have run three marathons to date, and multiple half marathons. At first, my goal was just to finish the races without getting injured, but during my latest marathon, I set a time goal. I decided that the best way to beat my past times was to train more on hills and include intervals in my training process. I ran my latest marathon in January and surpassed my two previous marathon times by forty minutes! While I do feel training on hills gave me an advantage, I would attribute most of the credit for my improved time to interval training.
Hip pain is often associated with getting old, but it can happen to anyone. Each particular hip condition can differ in severity with treatment decided on a case by case basis. If you find yourself in some serious pain, there are a few things you can do before calling us.
The core of the apple is not the best or most delicious part, but it is definitely integral to the structure of the fruit. It keeps the skin and meat of that scrumptious Pink Lady that you’re biting into together, as a whole.
The same could be said of your body’s core, or core muscles-that is. The bones of the spine provide the supporting frame for the back much like the innards of the apple. Connected to this frame is an intricate system of muscles and ligaments that increase the strength and stability of the spine, arms and legs. (1) Our core, composed of the spine and these muscles, keeps our bodies together, as a whole.
During the winter season, I get many questions from patients asking what is the best way to safely warm up cold muscles. I respond that it is important to warm up your muscles before a workout to enhance muscle performance and decrease soreness. Cold muscles do not have the same flexibility as warm muscles, and therefore will usually not work as efficiently since each muscle has a specific length at which it produces the most power. I also tell my patients that a dynamic warm up is better than a static warm up.
It’s 12:30 pm, and you have been sitting for 3 hours. Your body is not only hungry for a satisfying meal, but it’s also hungry for movement. It’s time to move your body. Take ten, with this 10 minute stretch break that works your body from the ground up!
You wake up.
However, you don’t actually feel rested, and your body aches. Did you really sleep during the 7-9 hours?
If this sounds like your morning inner dialogue, it may be time to update your sleep hygiene including position, pillow and mattress.
We update our phones and backup our computers often but forget to update and backup the devices that support our bodies in rest- a state that is necessary to life.
In 2011 The National Sleep Foundation found that 92 percent of people say a comfortable mattress is important to a good night’s sleep. (1) Where, how and with what you sleep is definitely important.
“Stand up straight.”
A phrase we may have heard as we stood in line outside of our elementary classrooms or as we prepared to enter a family gathering with our parents.
Yet, our spine itself isn’t actually straight. Perhaps the phrase should be: “Stand up curved.”
Wake up, eat breakfast, get dressed, and run to work. The start of every morning is a test in multitasking effectively. Yet, the ultimate multitasking is occurring within the structure of your back as you make your way through the start of your day. Your spine is a unique combination of bones, discs, joints and supportive muscles that is continually completing the tasks of keeping you upright and moving. (1) It protects the spinal cord, checks on nerve roots, relays messages to the brain, absorbs the shock of a heavy load, and supports the body.
On winter mornings, drivers would run their cars 10-20 minutes to warm them up. Now we turn the key and drive.
For your body, a good warm up is the key that gets the blood pumping and muscles moving. Setting aside 15-30 minutes before a workout is important to attain the desired effect. Without a warm up, your workout will not be as successful and impactful on your muscles. “A warm up serves two major purposes-to enhance performance and prevent injury. It is both physical and mental.” (1) Warming up is your body preheating itself for activity whether it be running, playing a sport, or active movement.