Practical Tips Ensure Enjoyment in Every Ride

biking exercise fitness Oct 19, 2022

A nice view from the bridge of John Yarbrough Linear Park in Fort Myers, October 2022.  A great running & biking trail!  Photo Courtesy of Charly Caldwell II.

With the cooler, less humid weather, here in Southwest Florida, and your bike in hand, this is the absolute perfect time to get out and enjoy the beautiful outdoors.

Few things compare to the exhilaration of riding your bike:

  • fresh air in your lungs,
  • wind in your hair and
  • sun on your face.

However, bicycling is a learned sport, and there are definitely a few tricks you should learn to ensure every ride is a success.

Never underestimate the importance of a good bike fit.

Your bike fit is paramount to comfortable and safe riding. You will go faster and much further on a cheaper bike that fits you well rather than on a spec’d out high priced model that doesn’t.

It is so important for both comfort and safety that you find an expert who can direct you properly.

Bike fit is not something you can...

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Understanding and Treating Shoulder Pain

Be sure to enjoy everything nature has to offer - including smelling this delight - Sweet Almond! (This particular tree is in the Children's Garden in Lakes Park - Fort Myers, FL).

The management of shoulder injuries is one of the most challenging in physiotherapy.

With the complexity of the shoulder joint and the wide variety of injuries and conditions associated with the shoulder, it can make diagnosing shoulder pain tricky.

The shoulder joint is one of the most mobile joints in the body, which, unfortunately, also makes it one of the most unstable joints and therefore highly susceptible to injury.

Shoulder injuries make up a large proportion of the musculoskeletal injuries, with nearly everyone between the ages of 18-88 experiencing at least one shoulder injury in their lifetime. 

Regardless of whether the pain is felt directly in the shoulder, there are several different anatomical structures that can trigger pain.

In some cases, the source of pain may be referred from...

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What To Do When Your Workout Stops Working

Practically every Sunday morning, our GearedUp Family runs in beautiful Lakes Park... Join us!

Whether you are just beginning or are a more advanced enthusiast, there is nothing more satisfying than reaching your training goals.

However, to do this, you must be training efficiently.

If you’re part of the population working out non-stop yet seeing little results, this article is for you.

First, always include mobility and activation warmups.

Warmups are typically done haphazardly, if at all.

How often do you see people wander into the gym, walk immediately up to a squat rack, and start pumping out reps?

If you’re doing this, you’re not only drastically increasing the risk of seriously injuring yourself, but are also not able to exercise to your full potential.

On the other hand, those who do warm up may be doing some cardio and a few stretches, but current research suggests that including mobility and activation work within your warmup is the way to get results.

...

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Proper Hydration is Critical to Your Fitness

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...

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Ramp Up Your Run By Hitting the Beach

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:

  • aerobic fitness,
  • muscular endurance, and
  • specific technique.

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...

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Sensible Precautions Required As The Temperatures Start Heating Up

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.

These included:

  • football
  • basketball
  • soccer, and
  • cycling.

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.

Here are...

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Office Based Exercise - Increase Productivity & Reduce Health Care Costs

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...

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Wants vs. Needs - Aligning Fitness Outcomes

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....

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Rediscover Your Exercise Routine

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...

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How much exercise do you need to reap health benefits?

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...

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