Tag Archives: exercise

Baby Steps, Ten Minutes of Them On an Elliptical

Since I’m no stranger to starting fitness routines over again it’s always the constant reminder of how far I’ve fallen when I start back up a fitness routine again.  Of course with each passing year the threshold drops further and further on the fitness levels at the beginning of each phase.  On this particular startup phase I started up this week with elliptical cardio.  Yes, I’d like to get back to running long distances again, but I’m still very early in the building phase and I know I have lots of body strength symmetry issues I want to work through.   It was shocking and disappointing when after ten minutes of a thirty minute “easy” elliptical workout that I could feel the burn in my quads and calves.  Because of some stuff around the house I have to get done I couldn’t risk having rigor mortis for the rest of the day so at that point I switched off to do an additional ten minutes of medium-speed walking on the treadmill.  My heart rate which was in the high-160s to low-170s during the “easy” elliptical routine was now in the 110-115 range.  That’s a perfect sustainable pace.

I’m sure I’ll be able to work up to much greater cardio levels over time.  I’ll have a similar problem with my strength training as that kicks in.  But it’s better to do the build up as baby steps rather a huge burst and then a crash and burn.  It’s easy enough to lose focus with a sustainable pace much less with a crazy fast one.

 

Methodology: Daily Journaling to Capture History

Journaling is one of the best way for you to determine what is actually going on in your life and to have a definitive record of progress or degeneration.  That is true for everything from emotions, to food to body measurements.  Especially when one is not on some radical transformation plan, we often don’t appreciate the smaller changes which are going on in our lives.  Besides that we often don’t take the time to listen to our body and how we are feeling.  Measuring these qualitative things are very important if you want to determine changes in how you are feeling over time.

We all get sick sometimes, and we know instantly that something is wrong.  However what about a gradual change in our mood or how we feel?  Our brains are good at normalizing behaviors. That leads us to treat certain chronic conditions, or feeling a certain way over a long period of time, as “just the way it is.”  Many times it is not a matter of it just being status quo for our bodies but instead symptoms of problems which we are dealing with due to diet or lifestyle.  By tracking and trending these things you can begin to see patterns emerge and start trying to address them proactively.

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To (foam) roll or not to roll…

…that is the question posed by Ben Greenfield on his Facebook page based on a discussion he found here: http://b-reddy.org/2013/05/20/issues-with-foam-rolling/ .  The article by Brian Reddy certainly makes a compelling argument against it, or more so against only doing foam rolling or to foam rolling in excess.  I think he presents a false dichotomy though.  He points out how foam rolling can’t fix underlying movement problems.  His main points are summarized in big bulleted letters, but I think over-simplifies the argument and creates that false dichotomy:

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