Feel Good And Play Hard!

Summer is upon us... many of us are readying ourselves to face swim suits and short shorts.... The difference between being comfortable and healthy and not, is habit. Being able to stick to your guns and do those necessary things that result in improved fitness. So enters the 12 exercise tips of Summer; a mixture of 12 tips and exercises to aid you in your quest for flatter tummies and firmer thighs.

  • Tip #1 = Frequency - Yea, I know, you have heard it before, but frequency is very important in changing your body. Your body is very efficient and it only adapts if it has to. Frequency of exercise causes the body to change to the stresses. You want to exercise 3+ times a week to give the body enough reason to change. To get into good shape, we have to do something frequently; we got out of shape because we did nothing frequently..right?
  • Tip #2 = Form - When exercising you want to make sure that you maintain good form. This allows for the best isolation of the muscle group you are working leading to faster gains. If we cheat we not only lose the muscle isolation, but we open the door to injury. An example of good posture is military posture; shoulder back, chest out and your ear is aligned over your shoulder, your shoulder over your hips, and the knees slightly bent. You modify or stop your exercise when you lose your form due to getting fatigued.
  • Tip #3 = Fatigue - Fatigue is another very important factor of fitness. As mentioned above, the body is efficient and responds to the stresses placed upon it. When you tire or fatigue the body responds by becoming stronger and more tone. So whatever exercise you are working on, maintain good form and work until you NEED to rest.
  • Tip #4 = Functional - Keep your exercises functional, meaning, gear your exercise routine to support those activities you like to do (skiing, running, housework, playing with kids, etc). By doing this you give your exercise more purposeful meaning you will be more likely to do it. Find out what type of exercises support those activities.
  • Tip #5 = Variation - Varying your exercise routine is very important for 2 reasons. 1) It keeps you from plateauing; as mentioned in tip #1 and #2, the body is efficient so it adapts. It is very common to hear people talk about how they stop making progress after 2-3 months. If you look at why, it is very often that they follow a set routine that does not change. To keep progressing and to keep your body changing, keep changing & varying your routine. 2)It keeps you from getting mentally bored. It is safe to say that you do not do things that bore you. If you get bored of exercising you will stop. Find creative ways to consistently vary your routine.
  • Tip #6 = How to vary a routine - There are numerous ways to vary a routine 1. Changing the number of sets and/or reps 2. Changing your weight 3. Changing the speed of your exercise 4. Changing angles of the exercise a. Example: i. bicep curl with palm up, palm down or thumb up ii. pushup with wide/narrow hand position (hands angled in/out) Life happens at many angles, so you want to exercise/train in many different angles. 5. Decrease your rest periods a. If you shorten your rest periods, you create more fatigue AND your workouts require less time. 6. Order of your exercises. a. If you only know a few exercises, simply change the order in which you do them.
  • Tip #7 = Large to Small muscle groups - If you are working multiple body parts in an exercise session, you want to work the large muscles first and then the small muscle groups. If you work the small groups first, then get tired and can prevent you from adequately working the larger muscle groups.
  • Tip #8 = Do not hold your breath - You want to make sure that you are steadily breathing when you exercise. If lifting weights, breath out during the hard phase of the lift and breath out during the easy phase. Holding your breath causes a spike in your blood pressure that can cause problems.
  • Tip #9 = Work your core - The back is the center of the bodys universe: the head, arms, legs all attach to it. If your back begins to give you problems your lifestyle changes dramatically. By working your core (abdominals/hips) your strengthen your back and therefore, enhance your abilities everywhere else.
  • Tip #10 = When to buy exercise equipment - It is typical for someone who is ambitious to change to want to spend $$ on home exercise equipment; the problem is, is that it ends up being a clothes rack after a few months. Before buying equipment for home start simple. Get a couple of inexpensive dumbbells, an exercising rubberband and begin walking or jogging. If you can stay consistent with you workouts for 2 months, invest more into your equipment. This allows you to create a habit then invest money into in.
  • Tip #11 = Slow motions - As our muscles get tired when we exercise, people will speed up the rate that they are moving the weight. This is a form of cheating, we drop the weight more quickly which is using gravity not muscular effort and we will use more body motion (swaying) to complete the lift. Slow motions create more fatigue and best isolate the muscle group while preventing injury.
  • Tip #12 = Get a buddy - Working out with someone is a great way to have more fun and to hold yourself accountable. There will be times that you do not want to work out, but will go to the gym anyway because you will have a friend who is expecting you. Find a buddy who has similar goals so you can push and encourage each other a long the way.

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