What is Trochanteric Bursitis?

Trochanteric bursitis is just one of many common causes of hip pain among athletes. If you have pain on the outside of your hip, you may be suffering from this sports injury.

The Greater Trochanter

This is a part of the femur, the large bone that makes up your thigh. It actually sticks out from the side of the hip, and is surrounded by several different soft tissues.

Because the greater trochanter sticks out, it is susceptible to friction between the bone and the muscles, especially the Iliotibial Band, or IT Band.

The trochanteric bursa is a small fluid filled sack that sits between the muscles and the greater trochanter in your hip. It is there to reduce friction between the muscles and bone as you move your hip.

With activities like running, jumping, and squatting, the muscles repetitively move over the bone, and over time this can cause an irritation of the bursa. Bursitis is an inflammation of the bursa.

Common Causes

Muscle tightness is the most common cause of bursitis. The Iliotibial Band, or IT Band is a big culprit in trochanteric bursitis.

The IT band runs along the outside of the hip, and the tendon actually moves over the greater trochanter everytime you lift your knee and flex your hip.

Think about how many times you do this every time you play basketball, or go for a run. If the IT Band is tight, this increased friction will irritate the bursa, and may cause pain over time.

Another cause is direct injury to the outside of the hip.

Contact sports like football and rugby can cause this type of injury, where you land forcefully or are hit on the outside of your hip. This causes bruising and irritation of the bursa.

Treatment

Rest is the best initial treatment for trochanteric bursitis. This will allow for your body to start healing, and for the inflammation of the bursa to subside. During the first few days, ice will help to reduce your pain and symptoms. Ice massage is the most effective way to ice this injury.

Once your pain has decreased, gentle stretching of the hip muscles can help to reduce the stress on the bursa. A good flexibility program can help treat this injury.

It is also a good idea to see your doctor or athletic trainer if you are having hip pain. This is the best way to know exactly what is wrong, and the appropriate treatment options.

Trochanteric bursitis is an inflammation of the trochanteric bursa in your hip. It can be caused by muscle tightness, repetitive motions, over training, or dirct injury to the hip. Rest, ice, and gentle stretching are good treatments, along with seeing your doctor for evaluation.

InSync Physiotherapy is a multi-award winning health clinic helping you in Sports Injuries, Physiotherapy, Exercise Rehabilitation, Massage Therapy, Acupuncture & IMS.

The Benefits of Balance Training

Most people don’t think about incorporating balance training into their fitness regime. This is because they don’t understand the benefits of adding it in. Balance is the ability to control the body’s position, either stationary (e.g. complex yoga pose) or whilst moving (e.g. ice skating). Balance is a key element of fitness, along with strength, cardiovascular exercise, and flexibility.

Balance training can be done using a stability ball, bosu ball, or board trainer. The overall benefits of balance training include improvements to overall fitness, sports performance, and injury prevention. Specific Benefits Include:

1. Body Awareness

Body awareness is the sense of how your own limbs are oriented in space, also referred to as proprioception. Balance training promotes body awareness which makes movement more seamless, with less likelihood of injury.

2. Co-ordination

Balance training requires all of your body to work together otherwise you might fall or stumble. By improving your co-ordination during balancing training, there should be an improvement to your co-ordination in everyday life.

3. Joint Stability

Balance training promotes stable knees, ankles, hips, and shoulders. This can prevent a whole array of injuries including sprained ankles and serious knee problems. These injuries are not uncommon in people who don’t do any balance training but do play a sport.

4. Reaction Time

If you slip or stumble when carrying out challenging balance exercises your body needs to re-balance immediately or you will fall. This can improve your reaction time as you learn to quickly correct a mistake, but not over-correct.

5. Strength

Balance training is challenging for your nervous system (brain and nerves). The nervous system recruits your muscle when lifting weights, so as your nervous system becomes more efficient it can recruit a higher percentage of your muscle for each lift. This means you are stronger and can lift more weight.

6. Power

Power is the ability to exert maximum muscular contraction instantly in an explosive burst of movement. The two components of power are strength and speed. With quicker reaction times and stronger muscles, your power ability should increase too.

7. Agility

Agility is defined as quick and nimble. It is the ability to change the direction of the body in an efficient and effective manner and to achieve this you require a combination of balance, speed, strength, and co-ordination. Therefore, the better your balance is, the more likely you are to have good agility.

8. Fun & Challenge

Adding some balance exercises into your fitness routine adds a new dimension, a dimension which is challenging but also fun too. It is motivating when you notice the improvement to the rest of your fitness regime by adding in balance training.

9. Long Term Health

Incorporating balance training into your routine helps to maintain or improve your balance, which is needed to prevent falls and fractures. As we get older our balance can deteriorate, something we want to avoid.

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9 Tricks to Make it Easier to Run Faster

Looking to break a new personal record in your next race? Or just want to work your way up from a walk to a jog? Running faster during your workouts takes dedication, time, and the ability to break out of the norm—you just have to be willing to get a little uncomfortable. It’s not as bad as it sounds, though!

Although it may not make sense, all runners can actually benefit from doing workouts besides running. Exercises that address other performance components, including strength, speed, flexibility, coordination, and endurance.

Learn to pick up the speed and attack your running goals with these 9 drills and tips:

1. Get Lean

Leaning out your body fat will help pave the way for muscle gain, which helps propel you forward during a race. A body composition test can tell you the percentage of body fat you currently have, and can be done at most gyms or training facilities. From there, choose healthier foods and run and cross-train regularly—when you’re leaner, you run faster.

2. Mobility Training

Stretching your muscles pre- and post-workout is still debatable, but most experts agree that adding mobility to your weekly routine will help improve overall running performance. Repetitive motion will cause tightness, which can affect performance. Increasing mobility by foam rolling, doing yoga, and stretching, can allow for optimal sprint mechanics. Runners with impaired flexibility limit their potential to develop speed.

3. High Knees

High knees help improve running form and coordination. The movement of going up with your knees paired with fast propelling to the ground allows your foot to scoop and push off of the ground. Spring up with light feet into each high knee to add speed and swing your arms straightforward and fast to improve your running form.

4. Sprints

Sprint workouts alternate between low and high intensity speeds, helping to build endurance and increase your pace. Plus, there are so many sprint workouts to choose from that it’s fun to make it your own. Fartlek (a funny Swedish word that means “speed play”) workouts are an alternating series of jogging and sprints, that help prepare a runner for uneven paces throughout a race. They can be done at the beginning, middle, or end of a run at whatever speeds you choose. Longer sprint workouts can include 200m, 400m, or 800m repeats on a track, allowing yourself only a small window of recovery in between each sprint. This helps increase running stamina.

5. Ladder Drills

Ladder runs are an agility exercise to help increase the speed and balance of your feet. Using a long rope ladder placed along the ground, alternate your feet in and out of each ring while running as fast as you can through the length of ladder.

6. Resistance-harness Running

Don’t be scared by the name of this drill—they’re challenging, but fun! Resistance-harness running can help add power and intensity to your training regimen. They inherently load and place the body into positions that mimic ideal sprint mechanics and require increased endurance. It helps teach you to keep pushing and driving your feet forward and can help improve your running form. Resistance-harness running can be done with a partner, a weight, or a parachute.

7. Hill Repeats

Most race courses have at least one hill or gradual elevation that can often slow you down. Find a big hill at your local park and do a series of hill repeats at a pace slightly faster than your race pace. Running hills build muscle and strength that help power your knees, legs, butt, and core muscles as you push up the incline. And the best part about hills? You get to fly down the other side!

8. Increase Mileage

Once you’ve gotten a steady baseline built up, add distance little-by-little to improve endurance and stamina, which will help strengthen your body for faster, more powerful runs. Try to increase your overall weekly mileage with about one-third total miles executed at a higher intensity.

9. Shuttle Runs

Shuttle runs are similar to sprints, but focus on even shorter bouts of power running that range from 10m, 20m, and 30m—or even combinations of all three distances. Start by setting up markers on both sides of the distance you choose, then sprint from one to the next and then back again, leaning down and touching the markers on each side. Repeat these shuttle drills to improve acceleration, balance, speed, and anaerobic fitness.

InSync Physiotherapy is a multi-award winning health clinic helping you in Sports Injuries, Physiotherapy, Exercise Rehabilitation, Massage Therapy, Acupuncture & IMS.

Foods that Improve your Workout Flexibility

Before working out, it is important to eat the right kinds of foods so that you can flex your muscles and joints easily and not suffer from cramps. Flexibility refers to the ability of different body parts to complete their motions. You need flexibility to perform regular activities like walking, lifting or bending and when you are flexible your muscles also remain active and mobile. This is why it is also important to introduce flexibility exercises when you are working out.

Stretching is a good way to make your body flexible before working out. But in order to improve your workout flexibility, it is not enough to simply stretch. You need to add certain foods to your diet that can improve your flexibility.

Foods which improve flexibility:

Green vegetables:

Dark, green leafy vegetables like spinach, seaweed, kale, chard, collard greens and watercress can heighten your flexibility when you add them to your daily diet. They have high water content which is necessary to flush out acids from your body. Popular diet services emphasize adding fresh fruits and vegetables to the daily diet to rev up metabolism and enhance the supply of nutrients.

Spirulina:

If you can mix this to your morning smoothie, you can increase your flexibility dramatically. This alga has many essential vitamins like beta carotene and B complex vitamins which boosts muscle strength. It can also prevent muscle cramps and let you stretch with ease.

Barley grass:

You can use barley grass extract in your daily meals. This will contain beta carotene, high amounts of calcium and iron etc which all play an important role in increasing flexibility and promoting overall health. Water: Perhaps there is no other food that can improve flexibility as much as water. You should always start your day with a glass of water and make it a point to drink well before you start an exercise routine. Water helps to lubricate the joints making you flexible in the process.

Proteins:

Foods like fish and chicken, whole grains and beans, nuts and seeds, olive oil and avocados, fresh fruits or veggies are great for improving flexibility. For flexibility and to avoid injuries, you need to load up on foods that are known to have very high water content like vegetables and fruits. Protein drinks and fruit smoothies can also help to hydrate your body. Chronic inflammations may cause fluid retention that makes your muscles stiff. Alkaline conditions are known to reduce inflammations and foods which can increase alkalinity are mainly vegetables and fruits. Spices like turmeric and ginger also help because these have anti-inflammatory properties.

Sulfur or Amino Acids:

Foods containing sulfur or amino acids promote flexible joints. So high sulfur foods like garlic, cruciferous vegetables, onions, egg yolks, red peppers etc are recommended for increased muscular flexibility in workouts.

Apart from these healthy foods, you need to remember that junk foods should be avoided before a workout. Junk foods and packaged foods contain excess sodium which leads to joints becoming swollen. The body tries to hold onto more fluids to dilute blood. Coffee and alcohol can also dehydrate the body. Acid-forming foods like processed carbs and sugar rich foods should also be ideally avoided before exercising.

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6 Muscles Women Tend to Ignore

Pectoralis Major

A lot of women elect to skip the bench press partially in thanks to that stereotypical image of a top heavy, male, bulking bodybuilder. But it’s a fear unwarranted: on average, females don’t produce the testosterone required to bulk up quite that much. And working your chest can help ‘perk up’ what you already have! What’s not to love?

Okay, How do I use it?

Dumbbell bench press with properly proportioned weights for you – you should be able to maintain form from each press, but with minor difficulty. You want to be pushing your muscles.

Erector Spinae

This muscle is located in your lower back and helps keep your spine straight. Squats and planks rely a lot on lower back strength, especially to produce results.

Okay, how do I use it?

Lots and lots of practice of the bird dog. Another alternative is the waiter’s bow: resting your hands on the small of your back, bow at the waist like a waiter until you achieve 90 degrees. Bend slowly back up, and repeat. You should feel it stretching your hamstrings a little bit.

Hamstrings

A lot of women avoid working their hamstrings because they don’t want to make their thighs thicker. But such a large muscle is pretty important to avoiding knee injuries, avoiding needless ache when running and so many other basic exercises.

Okay, so how do I work it?

There are a lot of ways to work your hamstrings, but a good choice is by doing straight-legged donkey kicks. A lot of good ways to work them will involve moves that are straight-legged and bring your leg in line with or just behind your butt.

Transverse Abdominis

If you’re feeling the burn during an ab workout in your ab flexors, it could be your transverse abdominis that’s the sore culprit. This muscle is wrapped around your spine and plays a role in your core strength and stability.

Okay, how do I use it?

Just practice some planks or the pelvic tilt exercise. Laying face-up on the floor with your knees bent, tense your core and bend your pelvis slightly up, holding for ten seconds.

Triceps Brachii

Of the three parts of the tricep, one is commonly overlooked. Known as the “Long head”, this is the part of your triceps that run under your armpit and to your shoulder.

Okay, how do I use it?

The straight-arm triceps kickback is a good go-to. Working one arm at a time, get your dumbbell and let it hang from your hand. Keeping your arm straight, raise your hand until it’s just behind your torso. Pause, lower, repeat. You should feel it.

The Middle + Lower Trapezius

While the upper trapezius is more commonly involved in a woman’s workout, the other two parts of the upper back muscle are often ignored. These other two bands of muscle act differently from the upper in that they help to bring your arms down and back.

Okay, so how do I work it?

Preform Y and T lifts, pay attention and don’t shrug your shoulders.

Do you ignore any of these muscles?

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Shoulder Pain – Rotator Cuff Tendinitis

The most common shoulder pain located in the front of the shoulder, or pain that occurs when lifting or grabbing things above shoulder height is due to problems with the Rotator Cuff. Common symptoms of rotator cuff injury or strain are pain and difficulty raising the arm. It is painful for many people to lie on the shoulder when in bed, and many waking up at night with pain in the shoulder.

It is painful for some people to attempt and reach behind their backs. Reaching outward and upward can be painful and some feel a lack of strength when attempting to lift objects. The pain may also be associated with degeneration or inflammation of the Rotator cuff tendons leading to Rotator Cuff Tendinitis and what is called ‘Shoulder Impingement Syndrome’, which is caused by repetitive arm movements or long periods with the arm in the one position such as prolonged mouse and keyboard use on computers that irritates and inflames the shoulder bursa. The Bursa are the lubricated bag-like tissues that act to minimize friction and help protect the muscles and tendons when they move against each other.

The rotator cuff is a set of tendons, which surround the head of the humerus (the upper arm bone) to hold it secure in the socket and help the shoulder joint function properly. The rotator muscles and tendons help the arm to rotate at the shoulder joint and to provide a full range of movement.

The rotator cuff can be injured with a fall onto the arm or by jerking a load over head, or when the arm is pulled downward. Injuries to the rotator cuff can cause a tear that may require surgical treatment as they don’t heal readily.

The rotator cuff can also degenerate slightly with age or repetitive use. The pain of Shoulder Impingement Syndrome is due to a pinching action or a rubbing (an impingement) by the tendons causing irritation to the shoulder bursa. People who work a lot with their arms overhead, poor posture and various athletes who use repetitive throwing motions, swimming and tennis, can cause inflammation of the shoulder tendons and bursa. Poor alignment of the shoulder joint can restrict arm movement arm and decrease circulation.

Symptoms of this type of shoulder pain, typically occurring in the front of the shoulder area, are a sharp pain when you lift your arm to front or the side of your body, pain and/or general soreness that developed after repetitive movement or prolonged computer activity and shoulder pain when trying to sleep, especially when lying on the sore shoulder.

People at risk for this affliction include athletes involved in throwing and racket sports such as tennis players, baseball pitchers, swimmers as well as people who use their computers for long periods who repetitively reach forward to move their mouse or to type on their keyboard. People who have poor posture when at the computer (such sitting with rounded shoulders or lower arms not parallel with the desk, and who don’t support their wrists may pinch one or more of the tendons in the shoulder region) run the risk of developing these problems especially in old age. Anyone who reaches over head frequently and regularly can develop this problem. This includes swimmers, waiters, window cleaners, painters.

Common Causes of Rotator Cuff Tendinitis (Impingement Syndrome) are:

  • Maintaining your arm in a fixed position for prolonged time periods, such as working on computers, office work or hairstyling, especially with poor posture.
  • Sleeping on the same arm or shoulder each night.
  • Playing sports that require the arm to be raised above head-height repeatedly such as tennis, swimming,baseball (particularly pitching) and lifting heavy weights above your head.
  • Job that require activities requiring the arm to be held overhead for many hours a day (such carpenters, glazers, interior decorators and painters)
  • Degeneration, lack of stretching, lack of exercise, or poor control of your shoulder and shoulder blade tendons and muscles.
  • Poor posture and non-ergonomic seating positions, may over many years cause degeneration or fraying of the tendons that develops into rotator cuff tendinitis, or even tears.

Ways to Prevent Shoulder Pain includes:

  • Adopting proper postures and using ergonomic workstation designs.
  • Practicing proper postures when working at desks and when using computers.
  • Doing ergocises to strengthen and regularly stretch the muscles of the shoulders and scapular.
  • Taking regular breaks from computer work and regular stretching exercises when working.
  • Anti-inflammatory drugs.

Self Treatment Strategies

If you have developed shoulder pain that matches these symptoms and is relatively mild and not long lived, it is worth trying some simple treatments at home.

  • Rest.
  • Strengthening and stretching ergocises for the neck, shoulders and back.
  • Installing ergonomic workstation devices and aids and getting advice on posture.
  • Minimizing or avoiding overhead activities at least for a week or more until the pain declines.
  • Applying ice for 10-16 minute intervals for about 3-6 times per day.
  • Massaging the area to alleviate pain.
  • Specific rehabilitative exercises recommended by a doctor.
  • Professional massage therapy and chiropractic manipulation and professional physiotherapy for restoring muscular balance and flexibility.
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Eight Fascinating Facts About Fascia

What do you need to know about training the myofascial lines?

Fascia has been enjoying the limelight in the fitness industry as one of the hottest topics in recent workshops and publications. However, will we still be scratching our heads and wondering, “Okay, great, it’s important, but what do we do with it?”

This article offers eight key take-home points regarding fascia and fitness. From the writings of Thomas Myers, whose April 2011 article in IDEA Fitness Journal titled “Fascial Fitness: Training in the Neuromyofascial Web” provides the fitness pro with an arsenal of research and ideas on how to train the fascial web.

1. Myofascia Is a 3D Matrix

Fascia forms a whole-body, continuous three-dimensional matrix of structural support around our organs, muscles, joints, bones and nerve fibers. This multidirectional, multidimensional fascial arrangement also allows us to move in multiple directions.

2. Fascia Is a Force Transmitter

Have you ever watched parkour athletes jump down from a two- or three-story building, tumble and smoothly transition into a run? How do their joints not explode on impact from the fall?

The answer is that internal force (from muscle) and external force (gravity and ground reaction) are transmitted and dispersed within the body primarily via the fascial network (so long as the force is not too great). Fascia helps prevent or minimize localized stress in a particular muscle, joint or bone, and it helps harness momentum created from the operating forces mainly through its viscoelastic properties. This protects the integrity of the body while minimizing the amount of fuel used during movement.

3. Repetition Is Good and Bad

Soft tissue, a form of fascia, will remodel itself (becoming stiffer and denser) along lines of stress. This can have short-term benefits and long-term consequences. When we practice a movement repetitively, soft tissue will remodel itself in the direction of the desired movement so that the tissue becomes stronger at dealing with the forces in that particular direction. Long-term repetition can make fascia stiffer along the line of stress, but weaker in other directions, resulting in a possible higher frequency of tears in the fascia itself or immobility in the surrounding joints when moving in different directions. The same can be said of repetitive non-movement, such as sitting or standing, for long periods across days, months and years.

4. Fascia Can Heal and Hypertrophy

A 1995 study demonstrates that mechanical stress (exercise) can induce hypertrophy of a ligament, a form of fascia. New studies demonstrate the fascia system’s ability to heal itself after being torn. One such study found some people with anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) tears were able to return to full function without surgery and that the ACL healed completely. As we learn more, we may see new types of rehabilitation techniques, as well as changes in what we believe to be ideal form for some exercises.

5. Fascia Can Contract

Myofibroblasts, which allow smooth-muscle-like contractions to occur, have been found in fascia. Numerous mechanoreceptors (Golgi tendon organs, Ruffini endings, Paciniform endings) have also been identified within the fascial matrix; these may be contributing to the smooth-muscle-like contractions and communicating with the central nervous system regarding the amount of shear forces within the connective tissue. It is theorized that contraction of the fascia aids in stability and energy expenditure. More research is needed to understand how fascia and muscle contract in concert with one another, how these contractions affect overall movement and what they mean for the fitness professional.

6. Fascia Can Act Independently of the Central Nervous System

Fascia is always under tension as long as gravity is present. This passive pre-tension has been called human resting myofascial tone—which uses the principle of tensegrity.. Resting myofascial tone provides a low-level stabilizing component that helps our posture and allows us to perform movements like getting in and out of a car without thinking about them.

Because connective tissue has 10 times more proprioceptors than muscle, the fascial matrix helps us react to our environment faster than the conscious mind can respond, whether we are unexpectedly stepping off a curb, reacting to an opposing player in a sport or drawing a hand off a hot stove.

7. Mood Influences Fascia

In the book The Endless Web: Fascial Anatomy and Physical Reality (North Atlantic 1996), R. Louis Shultz and Rosemary Feitis discuss how our emotions are stored within the body, including the connective tissue.

“The physical response to emotion is through the soft tissue,” they write. “The fascia is the emotional body. . . . Ideally, feelings are felt in the total body—emotions travel through the fascial web. We then interpret the physiological sensation as anger, affection, love, interest and so forth. . . . The reason your neck can’t straighten and lengthen may be because of the shock of being continually bullied in childhood. Physical work will only partially open that problem unless there is recognition that there may be an emotional origin.”

Using this concept, a fitness professional can develop a holistic approach to understanding posture and movement—an approach that sees them, not just as physical, but as emotional and psychological as well. Fascia may become stiffer and less compliant when a client is depressed, anxious and fearful. Trainers see this when clients show up after having a miserable day. Mood greatly influences posture, movement and proprioception. Perhaps enhancing mood may enhance the physical state through the fascial web.

8. Fascia Allows Us to Train the Body as a Whole

Dissections demonstrated that connective tissue not only envelops muscle, bone and organs but does so continuously through many layers. This link connects us holistically in movement and function. For athletes or others looking to improve or maximize function, the fascial web gives us a rationale for incorporating whole-body movements into our training regimens.

The more we learn about our connective tissue, the more we can integrate it with the other systems of the body (muscular, nervous, skeletal) and gain further insight into human movement and performance. Using myofascial lines in our training can give us a unique perspective on how to maximize our ability to mitigate force, save energy and build endurance while improving multijoint mobility and strength. Training the body as a whole in three dimensions, as opposed to training isolated, segmented parts, may be a missing link in the exercise programs of people looking to maintain or improve the integrity of their bodies.

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8 Tips for Running Injury Prevention

No one wants an injury to derail their training plans. It doesn’t matter if you run for your mental health or are training for a race, an unplanned break is something we’d all like to avoid. Although no plan is 100% injury-proof, there are steps you can take to prevent running injuries.

1. Warm-up

Many runners go from standing on the curb to running without a workout. We’ve heard pre-run stretching may be bad, so what else is there? A great way to prepare your body for the work ahead is to add Neuromuscular Activation & Dynamic exercises to your pre-run routine – particularly on strength, speed, or distance workouts.

NMA (or Neuromuscular Activation) refers to communication between the nervous & muscular systems. The goal is to prepare your muscles for a specific movement pattern – in this case, a certain type of run. The result is increased force and power from the muscle fibers, which is an ideal way to get the most out of your workout. The Dynamic stretching part of the helps you improve range of motion, without reducing power force and power and is an alternate to the static stretching you may have tried in the past. It also offsets any reduction in force and power that can result from static stretching.

2. Smart Mileage Increases

Too much, too soon is a very common reason for an injury. The most common recommendation (and good starting point) is to keep you mileage increases at 10% per week. And plan recovery weeks after no more than 3 weeks of increasing mileage (3:1 ratio).

But those recommendations are not cast in stone and the more you run, the more you can test out different approaches. For more experienced runners – you can try larger increases with steady mileage, instead of the 10% rule.

Another variable to adjust is the time between recovery weeks. The 2:1 ratio (versus the standard 3:1) works best for many runners – both physically and mentally.

3. Distance, Then Speed

This one is particularly important for new runners (and those coming back from a break). We want it all – to run further and faster all at once, but it’s a risky plan. Take your time and focus on building your mileage first.

Once you have build a solid base mileage (at least 15 miles a week), you can start to add in quality work. Start with hill repeats to build functional strength in your legs – then you can progress to speed work.

4. Consistent Running

When life gets in the way, sometimes your running takes a backseat. Be very careful in this situation and watch your weekly mileage. Having one week with reduced mileage is okay, but if you’re constantly missing workouts and having large fluctuations in weekly mileage is a problem.

This is the time to think about your goal – should you adjust down to a lower mileage that you CAN sustain or find a way to fit in your planned workouts. Be honest with yourself!

5. Strength Training

Often overlooked, but a critical factor in avoiding injury! Strength training is key for any balanced athlete – which includes healthy runners. Including strength in your training plan will help you avoid muscle imbalances that can lead to injury. Like a hamstring strain from overdeveloped quads & underdeveloped glutes and hamstrings.

A full body strength training program will help keep you healthy, as well as building muscle that will help your run performance. It’s a win-win! You can get an effective workout at home or in the gym, so find a plan that fits your schedule best.

6. Stretching & Foam Rolling

Although pre-run stretching has mixed results, stretching post-run is less controversial. It works best for your running routine to help keep your muscles loose and prevent injuries caused by tight muscles. A combination of static stretching and foam rolling is great for best results.

7. Cross-Training

Many injuries that runners experience are due to the repetitive motion of running. One way you can counteract that (in addition to strength training) is to add in complementary sports to use your muscles in different ways. This is one reason many runners add duathlon or triathlon to their list, as biking and swimming can be very helpful for running! And you may find a new sport that you love!

Biking helps build leg strength and many people find that results in better running! Swimming builds your lung capacity, which helps you run harder. And variety is almost always good for your mental enjoyment!

8. Nutrition

Last, but not least, is nutrition. Think of nutrition as building your body’s ability to withstand the effort of training. You need to fuel your body with what it needs to power your workouts – resulting in better performance. If you don’t eat enough, your body doesn’t have enough fuel to power the workouts you’re asking it to do. Two keys to consider for running include daily calcium (1000+mg for bone health) and refueling with carbs & protein (3:1 ratio) after workouts.

For general health, you should be drinking plenty of water (start with your bodyweight divided by 2, in ounces), eating tons of dark colored veggies, and focusing on lean protein. A healthy body will be in the best position to support your training – eat like an athlete, not a weekend warrior!

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7 Ways to Avoid Injury as a New Skier

Hitting the slopes for the first time? Here’s what you should know to stay safe and come home in one piece.

If you’re new to skiing or it’s your first time on the slopes since last season, listen up. When you’re hurtling down the mountain and you lose control, there are tons of ways to get hurt, and the last thing you want to do hit a tree (or another person) and take a bone-breaking tumble. With these simple tricks in mind, you’ll make it home from your ski trip unscathed—and be able to hit the slopes all season long.

Hit the gym.

Priming your muscles before the snow even falls will prep you for skiing’s intense quad and hamstring workout. Plus, cardio is important because it’ll help your body adjust to the mountain altitude. A lot of skiers live at sea level, then head up to the mountains come winter. If you aren’t in good shape in the low elevation, moving up will make any exercise even harder. You’ll feel light headed at high altitudes because your body works harder to spread oxygen to your cells. But if you work out year round, you will already have a good base for your cardiovascular fitness to help curb the side effects.

Start out easy.

You might want to follow your friends to the tougher hills right away, but even experienced skiers need to take it easy for the first few runs. One of the biggest mistakes skiers make is wanting to go to steep terrain too quickly. Give the easier runs a try to learn new movements and perfect your technique, then challenge yourself to the harder runs. You need to develop turns on easier terrain and then apply that to steep terrain. Before you advance to steeper runs, be confident with your turning skills and ability to stop.

Practice the skier code of conduct.

Plastered around all ski resorts, and sometimes printed on the back of your lift ticket, are simple, common-sense rules to follow when on the mountain. For example, ski in control so you are able to stop and dodge others; give people downhill the right of way; look up before you merge onto a trail; and never rest in a blind spot for other skiers. Follow these rules, and you’ll have a better chance of not getting hurt.

Know your lifts.

You might not realize it, but getting on and off the lift is prime time for getting injured if you’re not paying attention to how it works. Lift usage is included in the skier code. When you are entering a liftline, make sure you know how to use that particular chair. Newer lifts will come to pick you up slowly, but some of the older machines won’t run as smoothly or slowly. Pay attention to what you are doing and what the chair is doing, and loading should be a cinch.

Take breaks and stay hydrated.

Typically, people are going to get hurt themselves late in the day when they are tired and heading back to the lodge. Be aware of how you are feeling — take a rest when you need to, and make sure you load up on plenty of water or sport drinks before, during, and after your time on the mountain.

Let yourself fall.

People try to fight the fall by holding themselves up, and that’s when the ligaments tear. If you do start to fall backwards, it is better to sit down than resist it. Stay conscious of your form, especially when you feel tired or are coming off of steep runs to a flat area. If you zone out, and you might get hurt. Another appropriate time to sit down? If you’re speeding down a run, out of control. Sitting down will slow you down, and help you gain control before you run into another person or a tree.

Take a lesson.

Lessons keep your technique moving in the right direction and help prevent bad habits. It’s recommended to take refresher lessons once a year or every other year for experience skiers, because lessons will sharpen up your skills on the little things that matter, like making sure you are balancing over your whole foot instead of leaning back in your boot.

InSync Physiotherapy is a multi-award winning health clinic helping you in Sports Injuries, Physiotherapy, Exercise Rehabilitation, Massage Therapy, Acupuncture & IMS.

The Warning Signs From Your Body You Should Never Ignore

One of the best ways to stay healthy is to constantly analyze any signs that our body is giving us. Humans have a huge amount of feedback from their body, but there are a few symptoms that no one should ever ignore. Here is a closer look at a handful of warning signs that might indicate a serious medical issue is taking place.

Sudden Headaches

A headache could be nothing more than a pinched nerve or dehydration, but any severe headache that comes on quickly requires immediate action. This type of discomfort could be the result of any number of medical issues that are taking place such as a burst blood vessel. The most severe headaches will generally peak in terms of pain within just a few minutes and can last for five minutes or longer.

Unexplained Weight Loss

Those that are not trying to lose weight and do not have a history of fluctuating weight should understand that weight loss could be a sign of trouble. For the average individual, gaining or losing more than a pound of weight per week will put an incredible amount of strain on the body. In terms of losing weight, it may be nothing more than digestive issues, but sudden weight loss could also indicate a much more severe problem such has a tumor or failing organ.

Chest Pain

Chest pain is one warning sign that no one should ever ignore no matter their age or their overall health. Chest pain will often manifest itself as either a dull throb or a sharp pain through the center of the chest, both of which can be a precursor to a heart attack. When the heart is having difficulty pumping blood it will also affect other parts of the body. Those with a troublesome heart rate will often notice pain around their shoulders and up through their jaw.

Sharp Abdominal Pain

The abdomen is home to a number of organs, and this means that any severe pain that has come about for no clear reason should result in an immediate trip to the hospital. If there are medical problems such as an infection in one of the organs, there may be secondary signs to keep an eye out for as well. This includes blood in one’s stool, dizziness, and a change in one’s appetite over a long period of time.

Burning Sensation on Hands and Feet

When appendages are not receiving enough blood it will cause a tingling or burning sensation as the nerves send the brain erratic feedback. If this lasts for more than a few moments or happens often, however, a patient should schedule an appointment with their doctor. When left untreated, chronic circulation issues could permanently damage nerve cells around the hands and feet.

The human body is extremely complex, and this includes its ability to give us warning signs when serious medical issues are beginning to take place.

InSync Physiotherapy is a multi-award winning health clinic helping you in Sports Injuries, Physiotherapy, Exercise Rehabilitation, Massage Therapy, Acupuncture & IMS.
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