A Beautiful Early June 'Walking, Running or Biking' Day in Lakes Park. Photo Courtesy of Charly Caldwell II.
The amount of water you need to drink on a daily basis is often the subject of widespread confusion and debate.
We all know that proper hydration is important but how essential is it to your fitness?
More specifically, how does hydration status affect athletic performance, recovery between workouts and is it sport specific?
First, it is widely accepted and understood that water is a medium for numerous physiological process in the body.
Therefore, it makes sense that exercising in even a mildly dehydrated state puts extra strain on the body and in turn affects exercise performance, outcomes and recovery.
Also, being poorly or inadequately hydrated impairs the body’s cooling system. If we cannot effectively cool our bodies, our core temperature, heart rate and perceived exertion all rise as well.
This means that exercising at any given intensity will feel more...
Enjoy miles of brisk walking (even running) on our beautiful beaches in Southwest Florida! Photo Courtesy of Charly Caldwell II.
Southwest Florida is packed with runners and beaches!
And sometimes, the beaches are packed with runners! But while navigating the streets and sidewalks has its own kind of challenges, running on sand is definitely a step up when it comes to intensity.
With all the beauty and natural resources of the beach surrounding us when we run, we might forget we're working out if it wasn't for the increased effort required.
There are three important aspects of running on the sand:
Obviously, you need to have a good aerobic capacity to run in the sand --
On a basic level, running requires your body to burn a lot of energy or calories, and the body functions best and can go longer when it gets plenty of oxygen into the lungs, blood stream and muscles.
So you need an aerobic fitness base to tackle the...
A gorgeous April evening stroll in Lakes Park (in Fort Myers, Florida). Photo Courtesy of Charly Caldwell II.
Participation in sports have long been recognized as an effective way to stay in shape, and a great start on the road to a healthy lifestyle.
However, organized sports and individual activities can also sometimes result in injury.
The American College of Sports Medicine has identified the most common sporting activities leading to injury, more specifically, heat-injuries.
Individual activities, such as running may also lead to a range of injuries while rollerblading and skateboarding spearhead the way in injury-causing culprits among children.
Of additional concern is the research warning that people who experience sports injuries (especially children) are at a higher risk of suffering from re-injury later.
Therefore, it’s important to take some sensible precautions to avoid injury in the first place.
If you can't get to the beach to walk or run, here's some ideas for exercising from the office! Naples Beach - March 18, 2022. Photo Courtesy of Charly Caldwell II.
It’s never ending...
Clients are referred to exercise physiologists because they either have several risk factors predisposing them to chronic disease and/or conditions (i.e. high blood pressure, high cholesterol), or they have developed a chronic disease and/or condition and their health care provider wants exercise to be a component of their treatment.
Simple, or at least you’d think so right?
Many of these referred patients have very busy lives: work and family (kids and often grandchildren too), so a big part of successful planning is to find ‘potential exercise/physical activity’ time in their day, which is often no easy task.
If the average person sleeps 7.5 hours per night, that leaves potentially 16.5 hours, to complete 30 minutes of exercise (minimum recommended daily amount by the...
Early March 2022, Queens Wreath (Petrea volubilis) in full bloom in the Botanical Gardens of Lakes Park (Fort Myers). Photo Courtesy of Charly Caldwell II.
As a coach and professional for over 30 years now, I have had a wide range of clients with a variety of goals.
Some want fat loss, muscle growth, improvements in performance, more energy, the list goes on.
While it is important that we recognize and be clear about what we want, it is vital to also establish and align with what we need.
Even though we may not think we may not need a particular exercise, from an optimal health position, it might be as important to correct posture and improve functional movement patterns as it is to develop specific muscular strength.
How do we integrate what we need seamlessly into our training session so that we still get what we want?
Educate yourself and seek professional help.
Have an evaluation to find out where your fitness is currently and what you need to improve it....
A beautiful late February day for running, walking or biking in Lakes Park (Fort Myers). Photo Courtesy of Charly Caldwell II.
We're two months into 2022, and...
People have been asking how to restart their fitness program!
If your last workout feels like a distant memory, do not despair.
Now is a perfect time to find your way back into a fitness routine.
However, be mindful. You don’t need to rush into it head first.
By doing a little planning and adopting a gradual approach, you will reduce your risk of injury and perhaps even get a little more enjoyment from it.
First, be realistic.
If you’ve ever taken a break from exercise (holiday, injury), you know trying to fit the weeks you have missed into the first two weeks back doesn’t work.
I have an adage I use in these situations:
‘It’s not about where you’ve been, it’s about where you’re going.’
When it comes to the cardio, go easy on yourself here too.
This means being able to...
A georgeous February day in the Botanical Gardens of Lakes Park, Fort Myers, Florida. Photo Courtesy of Charly Caldwell II.
People often ask me how much exercise they really need.
The answer depends on several factors, but primarily I tell them to consider their current health status and fitness goals.
A tedious answer, I know, but the amount of exercise someone needs and/or is capable of in order to shed 10 pounds is very different from the amount someone needs who simply wants to keep their cholesterol in check and their heart healthy.
The Institute of Medicine recommends:
“At least 60 minutes each day of moderately intense physical activity to prevent weight gain and achieve the full health benefits of activity,” a recommendation further endorsed by the American Council on Exercise.
An hour of physical activity each day appears to be the magic number to optimize health and reduce the risk of various disease processes including heart disease and cancer.
While an hour...
Enjoying a brisk walk on this clear, crisp winter day in Lakes Park in Fort Myers. Photo courtesy of Charly Caldwell II
People often associate exercise with weight loss as if the two a synonymous.
While it is true that people who exercise regularly tend to maintain a healthier weight, exercise has so many more benefits for the body.
Here's 15 Benefits of Exercise:
1) Exercise helps your brain.
Exercise has been shown to ease anxiety, improve mood and fight depression. It promotes the release of a mood-lifting brain chemical called serotonin and the release of endorphins, natural feel-good painkilling substances. Exercise also improves cognitive function and decreases the risk of dementia.
2) Good for your skin.
Moderate exercise stimulates circulation and so brings oxygen and nutrients to the skin. Sweating allows the body to excrete wastes via the surface of the skin.
Regular exercise increases lung capacity and strengthens the respiratory muscles. Exercise also...
Biking by the Lakes Park train on a beautiful January 2022 day. Photo Courtesy of Charly Caldwell II
Muscle soreness post workout is clinically known as DOMS or Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness.
This muscle soreness is that distinctive aching, stiffness and tenderness that most of us experience after an unfamiliar or particularly taxing workout a day or two post exercising.
The textbook definition describes DOMS as being caused by eccentric exercise (controlled elongation), somewhat through isometric exercise (static) and not at all with concentric contractions (active shortening).
Speak English please?
This is much easier to understand if we consider the differences in running in biking.
When we run, our body weight is unsupported and our feet strike the ground with each step.
In turn, the joints through the lower body; the back, pelvis, knees and ankles must absorb 6-10 times our bodyweight with each step before propelling us forward again.
The water is clear and cool on Southwest Florida's beaches this time of year! Get outdoors, walk and take deep breaths to feel even better. Photo courtesy of Charly Caldwell II
As recent as this past decade, working with athletes with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder was not common place.
Up until about 7 years ago I could count the number of athletes coming to me with PTSD on one hand.
However, just as Bob Dylan once said; “For the times, they are a changing”.
As our population ages, we are seeing more survivors from 9-11, the armed forces, mass shootings and even sporting events (Boston marathon) turn to exercise to help manage and provide relief from the symptoms associated with this disorder including:
to name a few.
Constantly gearing up psychologically for fight or flight can be wear on us physically mentally and emotionally.