7 Simple Ways To Stay Active


7 Simple Ways To Stay Active

Too many of us have an all-or-nothing attitude when it comes to staying fit. We’re too “slammed” at work for the gym, or our kids’ activities are keeping us in the car — and off the track — for long hours. Yet, there are a few basic elements you can add into your daily life that truly add up to a more active lifestyle.

1. Take the Longest — or Hardest — Distance Between Two Points

Speed is usually the name of the game in your busy life. But does the time saved parking close to the store really add value? Make a game of parking at the far end of the lot, so that you have to push a cart or carry a bag a greater distance. When you’re at work, take the stairs — unless you really are running late for that meeting!

2. Pay for Your Lunch — in Footsteps

Skip the cafeteria in favor of a healthy eatery down the street if you’re working. Or walk outside for 20 minutes before you return to your brown-bag lunch. If you’re retired or working from home, walk to the corner grocer’s to gather the goods for lunch. Living out in the country or the suburbs? Pretend that your daily walk is the “fee” you have to pay in order to get into your kitchen and make that sandwich.

3. Consider a Standing Desk

How do standing desks help? It’s amazing how much healthier simply standing in place is, compared to sitting. For one thing, you burn more calories. You’ll also hunch less, meaning that neck and shoulder pain is eliminated. Standing also boosts fitness in significant ways by keeping blood sugar more steady after a meal, and by encouraging more movement overall.

4. Fool Yourself Into Running Errands

Using a smaller glass for water — or mug for green tea — means that you have to return to the water cooler or kitchen more often to fulfill your daily hydration goals. Likewise, you can make going down the hall to borrow a stapler a separate trip from hiking upstairs to ask someone in HR about your vacation schedule. If our Fitbits have taught us anything, it’s that a hundred extra steps here and there really do add up over the course of the day!

5. Use Fitness Benefits as an Incentive to Do Chores

Organizational experts know that 20 or 30 minutes of chores a day adds up to a cleaner, more organized space. You can certainly get a lot of toys into baskets during that time — not to mention mopping a floor or weeding the herb garden. So if you remember that these dreaded tasks also burn calories and build up your core, it may help you feel more like tackling them.

6. Keep Equipment Handy

Stash a yoga mat or 5-pound weights under your bed. Hang resistance bands on a hook in the kitchen. That way, you’ll be far more likely to do a few reps while watching TV or waiting for the pasta to boil!

7. Don’t Put Off Physical Therapy

The most obvious way physical therapy helps is by addressing the aches and pains that keep you from pursuing your active lifestyle. In addition, many physical therapy sessions are a workout in themselves, which helps you meet your weekly cardio and/or endurance goals. A physiotherapist is also a great resource for giving you tips on tweaking your daily habits. He or She can go over what a normal day looks like for you and offer advice on how to make it a more active one. If chronic pain is an issue, your PT can show you specific moves that streamline the physical challenges.

Call NRG Athletes Therapy Fitness today to see how physical therapy can help you live a pain-free and more active life.

6 Exercises that Can Really Improve Athletic Speed

Whether you’re a committed athlete, a weekend warrior, or just beginning a new activity, improving athletic speed is beneficial for nearly every type of athletic activity. The following are 6 exercises that can really improve your athletic speed.

1. Lunges

Lunges are great exercises that can help improve many areas of your body including hips, legs, and inner core. Active states that the lower position of a lunge mimics the position of your body when you’re airborne in a sprint. It’s important to learn the proper form for the basic front lunge before advancing to different types of lunges such as lateral or reverse.

2. Run Several Sprints in a Row

Human Kinetics states that one of the ways to improve speed is to run 10 sprints of varying distances. The distance can vary from 10 to up to 50 yards. This exercise can be varied, depending on your current fitness level. You can start out by doing 10 sprints for 10 yards, with a few seconds of rest between. A more advanced athlete may want to run a full 50 yards each time.

3. Side Throws

Stand sidewalks to a wall, about 10 feet away. Then throw a medicine ball toward the wall as forcefully as possible. It’s important to keep up your back elbow so you don’t injure your shoulder. If you should suffer any shoulder injury or pain, a licensed physical therapist can evaluate and treat your injuries to get you back on track again as quickly as possible.

4. Forward/Backward Shuffles and Side Throws

This type of exercise involves quickly shuffling toward or away from the wall before throwing the ball again toward the wall. Again, make sure your elbows are in place to prevent shoulder injury.

5. Reactive Crossovers and shuffles

This exercise requires you to either shuffle or crossover at the command of a coach or a trainer. The random reaction required will help you build your speed.

6. Jump Rope

Jumping rope is an amazing exercise for increasing speed. Single foot hops are especially good for improving leg speed. Jumping rope is even used in many physical therapy activities to improve flexibility.

Whatever exercise you choose, it’s important to include a solid warm-up and cool down to prevent injury. According to the American Physical Therapy Association, injuries to the knee are the primary injury runners’ experience. If you experience knee injuries, or any other type of injury, it can help to receive physical therapy from a qualified physical therapist.

Call NRG Atheletes Therapy Fitness today and speak with our experts. Have a young one looking to improve their game? Read more about our Speed Training Programs for more information!

4 Workout Recovery Tips for to Ensure Peak Athletic Performance

Any coach or physiotherapist can tell you that the difference between a so-so season and a one at which you’re operating at peak performance is the care you give to recovery. Whether it’s a long run, a grueling practice or a tough game, heavy physical activity puts a strain on your muscles, joints and cardiovascular system.

1. “Post” Stretching is as Important as “Pre”

Static stretching is ideal for recovery. After you work out, hold your basic stretching pose for longer than you would with more dynamic, warm-up stretching routines. After you’ve extended the muscle group you’re targeting, try to hold the pose for at least 30 seconds.

In addition, using foam rollers during stretching in physical therapy or at home is an excellent recovery tool. If you’re not sure which stretches are best for recovery, a physical therapy session, targeted to aiding recovery, can help you learn some new routines.

2. Have More “Rice”

Too many athletes reserve the RICE (rest, ice, compression, elevation) for treatment for actual injuries. Yet the very act of working out causes countless micro-tears in your muscle tissue. Some or all of the RICE strategies can keep that soreness from extending into your next workout or physical therapy session.

The “rest” component is sometimes overlooked during a busy workout period, but giving muscle groups a day off is important. Elevate your arms or legs if they’re feeling sore. An ice pack is another tried-and-true recovery method, while compressing that pitching arm, or tricky ankle, in a brace or bandage can make a big difference.

3. Feed the Need

What you munch on after your workout can go a long way to maintaining peak performance. Foods high in lean protein aid muscle repair, while complex carbs restore your depleted sugar levels. Beans and rice, fish and whole-grain rolls, chicken and quinoa — all these pairings make for great protein-carb combos.

Of course, drinking plenty of water is also important. Peak performance also comes from having enough fluids in your system to keep waste buildup moving, regulate your body temperature, and keep your joints “well-oiled.”

4. Sleep It Off

Boring but true: You simply can’t maintain excellence in your athletic performance without proper rest. That’s especially true on days that you’ve put your body through it’s paces. Sleep promotes the recovery of your muscular-skeletal, cardio and immunity systems.

Physiotherapists agree that teens need up to 10 hours of sleep each night, while adults need at least 8 hours.  

Call NRG Athletes Therapy Fitness today and speak with our experts.