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The keys to staying physically healthy

The keys to staying physically healthy

Hey there newsletter family! Just want to start this off by saying THANK YOU for opening this up and giving it a read. We really appreciate you taking time out of your day to pick up what we put down ; )

In this weeks newsletter, Coach Jordan and I teamed up to give you some general tips in preventing injury within your fitness journey. Whether it’s just an unwarranted soreness or a more serious injury, we don’t want you to experience it. And it’s not until it happens to you, that you wished you would have taken more precaution. So let’s not let it happen to begin with, deal!? Most sports/fitness injuries are extremely preventable, so buckle in & get readin’.

I’ll let Jordan kick it off with the physical to-do’s:

Disclaimer: This article is meant for HEALTHY individuals preventing injury when exercising. You should always get checked out by your doctor to ensure you are healthy enough before starting an exercise program. If you do have current pain you should see your doctor to be examined. This is not to be taken in place of medical treatment/advice by your doctor.

Preventing injury while exercising isn’t always the easiest thing to do, especially when those injuries come from overuse. These types of injuries build up over time, often times due to incorrect form or from overtraining muscles. Overuse injuries, because they progress over a length of time, can sneak up on a person leaving them puzzled as to where the injury is coming from. This is why learning form and the correct way to exercise is imperative. While online exercise programs/DVD’s can be tempting, be wary if you are unsure of how to perform the exercises. The best bet to knowing the correct form and executing exercises correctly is by seeking professional advice. While some see personal trainers and strength coaches as too expensive, the investment is worth it if it means correct form and less chance of injury. Remember, it’s not something you have to pay for forever but it’s a service you’ll benefit from forever!

Another reason for injury while exercising is doing too much, too soon. Often times people jump right into programs that may not be at the level they should start out at. Mastering basic, core exercises that you can then build upon is crucial in helping to prevent injury. If you do not have the basic/core strength to support you in more complex movements, you may be setting yourself up to get hurt. Just because an exercise seems “too easy” does not mean you shouldn’t do it. Building core strength along with knowing the correct form for exercise is a wonderful way to help prevent injuries!

My third and final reason that injuries can occur is an inadequate warm up. Dynamic warm ups are a great way to increase blood flow to your muscles and get them loose and ready to exercise. An example of a dynamic warm up could be high knees, butt kicks, skips, shuffles and jogging. The point of a dynamic warm up is to increase body temperature and loosen up your muscles to prepare them for a work out. Working out on stiff, cold muscles can lead to overstraining. Again, you want to make sure you are medically cleared and know the proper technique to carry out your dynamic warm up! After your workout is a good time to do what we call “static stretches” which are your more typical stretches that you hold for a prolonged period-30 seconds to 1 minute.

To sum up injury prevention:

  1. Know what you are doing-seek professional help from a personal trainer or strength coach to make sure your form isn’t leading you to injury!

  2. Gradually work yourself into exercises-don’t over do it the first day!

  3. Make sure you are adequately warming up your muscles and also allowing them to cool down with dynamic warm ups before exercises, static stretching after.

Thank you Jordan!!! Now onto the nutrition side of things: 

Believe it or not, preventing injuries is more than the way you move, the flexibility you achieve or the strength you build. What you are putting INSIDE your body matters a lot more than you may think. Here are some general suggestions to getting your body in a good place to prevent injury/wear & tear AND help you recover better if you do sustain an injury or limitation.

  1. Focus on eating wholesome foods. By putting emphasis on eating whole foods, you are automatically decreasing your sugar intake, which is the #1 cause of inflammation in the body. I’m not saying you need to cut sugar completely (you know I’m all about balance here) but focus on limiting it by consuming mostly whole foods! I also want to add – the importance of getting a variety of fruits & veggies as they give your body nutrients it needs for all systems to function optimally, along with antioxidants to fight free radicals (which lead to inflammation as well). In addition, taking a high quality multivitamin & antioxidant pill is never a bad idea (in fact I strongly recommend it since nobody’s diet is perfect).
  2. FISH OIL. I’m sure you’ve heard that fish oil is a great supplement to take but do you actually know why? Long story short, the american diet has no shortage of omega 6 fatty acids, which are beneficial but not when there aren’t enough omega 3’s to balance them out. Omega 3’s are typically lacking in the american diet (unless you eat fatty fish on a regular basis). Our bodies actually make most of the fats we need, aside from omega 3’s, which is why it’s important to eat foods that contain them OR take a supplement. Now, I could probably write a whole newsletter about the benefits of fish oil but I’ll keep it brief. Fish oil is a MAJOR key in reducing inflammation & chronic joint pain. Therefore, when it comes to joint health and injury prevention, it’s a necessity. If you want to feel & move better, start taking fish oil! HERE is the one I recommend because of how it’s dosed. Most fish oils you find in drug stores may be cheaper but that’s because you need at least 10 pills to get the necessary dose of omega 3’s & proper ratios of EPA / DHA. I am also a fan of the Nordic Naturals Brand, they have a lemon fish oil you can add to food!
  3. Collagen! Collagen is the most abundant protein in our bodies (found in bones, muscles, skin & tendons). It gives skin strength & elasticity and replaces dead skin cells. For joints & tendons, it’s basically the glue that holds it all together. It’s important to supplement with collagen because our body’s collagen production naturally decreases as we age (wrinkles & joint pain) and of course sun exposure & high impact exercise don’t help. You can get collagen from bone broth, pills or powder. I’m personally a fan of the Vital Proteins Unflavored Collagen that I mix with my greens or coffee. Supplementing with collagen helps improve hair skin & nail health, reduces joint pain & degeneration and can help heal gut lining. This is something you’ll want to take daily along with fish oil & a multivitamin to receive the full benefits of each.
  4. Balancing your meals / getting enough of each macronutrient. Back to food! Although there are lots of diet trends that encourage you to exclude macronutrients (eliminating carbs with keto for example), I find it super important to get healthy amounts of all three macronutrients. Protein helps repair and build muscle (building muscle will help you move better & protect your joints), carbs help give you energy and also aid in the muscle building process. Healthy fats help absorb nutrients, balance hormones & reduce inflammation in the body, especially those omega 3 fatty acids! So when putting together meals, I recommend having them look something like this: portion of protein, portion of complex carb or fruit, portion of healthy fat & a BIG portion of veggies.

To sum it up, you must learn to move properly, take it slow, stretch it out & give your body the nutrients it needs if you want to prevent injury. Practice these suggestions and you’re well on your way to a full life of pain free movement!

As always, click that reply button if you have ANY questions or comments. We love hearing from you!

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