1) Running is Good for Your Heart
Running doesn’t just strengthen your heart muscle, but also improves your entire circulatory system by making the lining of your blood vessels more flexible. When your blood vessels are more flexible the heart doesn’t have to work so hard to pump blood throughout your body. Another bonus is blood vessels of a fit person tend to accumulate less plaque than those of an unfit person, leading to a much lower risk of a heart attack or stroke.
2) Running Boosts Your Mood
When you run, your brain pumps out a feel-good hormone called endorphins. Endorphins are natural pain killers. The cool thing is these endorphins don’t just last during your run, but they also stay in your body for hours after, helping to boost your mood throughout the day.
3) Running Strengthens Your Bones and Joints
A recent study showed that runners were half as likely to suffer from knee osteoarthritis compared with walkers. The reason for this is every time your...
I taught this strength circuit three times this week: to the Wednesday evening crew, Thursday morning Older Adult 55+ crew, and the Friday morning crew. All thought it was pretty intense...however my Older Adults crew didn't complain too much. I promised my clients I would also be tortured by it Friday afternoon. I had so much fun I decided to film myself to share :)
Being my first time filming myself performing a workout, I realize after the fact that horizontal filming is the way to go (not vertical as most of this footage is) and definitely some of my camera angles need improvement, a bit too much of the bright ceiling light. Oops!
I did not make all my clients work as hard as the video shows...well except for my client Agnes! All exercises can be modified. The wonderful thing about small group personal training is I tailor the exercise to suit each client to be successful and safe in their joints.
5min dynamic stretches and...
Pre-habilitation is a proactive approach to avoiding injury. Professional athletes know of its importance, but it is often the missing component in the exercise programs of recreational fitness enthusiasts.
All experts agree exercise is key to health and longevity. Exercise helps with:
One of the biggest issues with starting an exercise routine is muscle imbalances and repetitive motion with incorrect form that often leads to injury. I see this quite often with new clients coming to me for advice.
With pre-habilitation, qualified trainers use specific exercises to strengthen vulnerable areas, while lengthening tight areas of the body to avoid injury. Each body is different, depending on its own set of habitual movement...
Staying motivated can definitely be much harder than initially starting an exercise plan. It’s just a fact of life. Starting a new habit and sticking to it is super hard. In this article, I am going to provide a few helpful tips to stay consistent with your habits so you can reach your health and fitness goals.
Just as we gradually train our bodies to develop strength and endurance, so need to do the same for our minds.
Now that is an important topic we all are hoping for, eh? Now let’s see if I can deliver…
I am super passionate about this. I’ve been for quite a while. It’s always been a focus, but definitely since I had my rotator cuff (the muscles under and over your shoulder blades) injury back in August 2018. You can read about it on my blog here.
At the time, I read a book about shoulder injuries called Framework for the Shoulder and the author, Nicholas DiNubile, mentioned that once we are in our 40s the rotator cuff muscles have received so much wear and tear and with changes in our tissue composition as we age we are quite likely to injure those muscles. A bit disheartening I should say, but I wasn’t satisfied with that answer. Nope. My plan is to not experience that pain again.
Being a Corrective Exercise Specialist with the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) I knew exactly what happened. I was training 6 times a week with heavy weights with...
I have been purposely practicing movement since I was a child. From the age of five doing acrobatics and ballet to aerobics (think bright purple unitard with leg warmers) at my local community centres in my teens.
I have always loved movement so deciding to become a fitness professional in my 20s was a no brainer.
In my 20s, while personal training my Toronto clientele, I also trained as an endurance athlete, and also in my early 30s when my children were little. I moved into heavy weight lifting in my late 30s. During these years I always practiced yoga as a recovery method, balancing my other activities and trying to stay injury free.
In my mid-40s, I found Barre, and have enjoyed the amazing transformation in my body. And then recently, about one year ago, I discovered Pilates. I immediately fell in love with the practice. I found the articulation of the spine (flexion, extension, rotation, and side flexion) fascinating. In yoga, we mainly keep the spine...
Strengthening the rotator cuff muscles is integral to keeping your shoulder joint strong and injury free. For a detailed description of what causes shoulder impingement, please visit my blog post on that topic here.
The rotator cuff consists of four small muscles. The supraspinatus is the topmost muscle. It lays across the top of the scapula (shoulder blade). The muscles (laying posteriorly - the closest to the skin) are the teres minor and the infraspinatus. The muscle under the scapula (laying anteriorly) is the subscapularis.
The supraspinatus, along with the deltoid, abducts (lifts up from the side) the arm. The teres minor and infraspinatus externally rotates the arm. The subscapularis internally rotates the arm.
The rotator cuff muscle that gets most injured is the supraspinatus. The muscle I strained was my left supraspinatus.
Rounded shoulders = winged scapula
Our rounded shoulders are the main reason we injure our rotator cuff muscles. Most of us have...
Pillow belly. That is what my children called the soft, squishy area between my ribs and pelvis. When my children were little they would take running leaps, head first, into it.
During my pregnancies I developed noticeable diastasis recti. Diastasis recti is the separation of the connective tissue in the middle of your left and right halves of the rectus abdominis, the most superficial abdominal muscle, making it unable to contract properly.
Several years ago I went through a stressful patch in my life with over programming (driving kids everywhere), too many volunteer commitments, selling/buying house, moving to a new city. And so, amongst all of that I wasn’t taking care of myself all that well: I ate a lot of prepackaged convenience “vegan” foods, lived on caffeine, often skipped meals, wasn’t consistent with exercising, didn’t get enough sleep or even down time. I was about 8 pounds underweight (when I am stressed I don’t eat). So my health was at an all time low. On top of that I started having severe peri-menopausal symptoms: delayed cycles, hot flashes, extreme fatigue, urgency to pee, joint pain. Fun times.
Many of those symptoms were eased by slowing down, cutting out a few programs from the family schedule, making healthy meals at home, eating animal protein, taking a compounded T4 hormone for my hypothyroid. But my joint pain remained. It wasn’t awful, just an...