Wednesday Warm-up- The Deadbug

 

Whether it’s your first trip to AMP or your hundredth, your first date is with our AMP warm-up.  These exercises are specifically selected  and sequenced  to warm up your muscles, joints, soft tissue, and raise your core temperature.  Literally warm you up.  This means getting muscles and joints prepared so they can move with ease, working on improving range of motion and mobility, and finally to activate muscles in you core and glutes.  In this short series, we’ll go over each exercise in detail so that you know what to expect from each exercise, what we expect to see from you and mainly so you can engage and move in the best way possible to optimize your warmup, training and gains.

First up is the deadbug.

Although it may not look like much, it packs a mean punch when done correctly.  However, most assume this exercise does nothing or that the it’s too easy, so it remains overlooked and rushed through. If this thought has ever come across your mind when it comes to this exercise, then you may need to slow down and acquire some body control to truly nail it down.

Does this describe you?

  • Flailing limbs
  • Flaring ribs
  • Low back arches off the ground

Slow down the movement, focus on your breathing, and maintain core control.  If the proper care is not given to the deadbug, you won’t gain anything from it.  It’s likely that you’ll end up performing what is fondly called a ‘struggle bug’.

Deadbug

What we want to see:

  • Neutral Spine, so no gap between your back and the ground
  • Slow, controlled movement through the leg and opposite arm
  • Slow breath out as you lower the arm/leg

Don’t be a struggle bug!

Check Out the Video Below

Deadbug

Deadbug


3 Reasons Why Runners Need Strength Training

It’s NYC Marathon training time and with it comes the thought process that you don’t need any lower body strength training.  Adhering to the common misconception that most runners have, that running is all you need can leave precious seconds/minutes on the road and open you up to injury.

Strength training has the ability to make you a stronger, more powerful, more efficient runner if you program smartly.  Adjusting your frequency, intensity, and volume is key to a successful training program.

Strength exercises that focus on the posterior chain, activation exercises that bring up weak areas, and core exercises to maintain stability should all be included.

Runners need to be able to balance the amount of volume they are doing on the road and in the gym. Depending on your total weekly mileage, you may have to adjust your work or volume of strength training. Simply put, if your mileage is going up, as it typically does during a training cycle, your overall volume of strength training should go down. This will reduce or eliminate the risk of overtraining and give you plenty of time to recover from workout to workout, whether it’s cardiovascular or strength-based.

As you get closer to a race day, no matter what the distance, it’s important to taper off your mileage. But in terms of strength training, you should look to maintain the strength you’ve built over the last few weeks or months. However, don’t go all out with intensity or volume. You’re doing enough work to keep your adaptation, just “to maintain.”

 

 

Want to learn more?  Read the rest of the article on Stack.com

 

Are you a runner interested in getting more out of your runs?  Or injury proofing your body?  Give us a call at AMP to set up a free consultation 516-900-1998


Exercising for Now or for Life?

The Sprint vs The Journey

The sprinter goes all out right out of the blocks.  Everything is extreme.  Extreme exercise program, extreme nutrition program, extreme calorie reduction, extreme restrictions!  110% at all times.  These are the people that are training for the short term.  Ignoring technique, mechanics, proper progression/regressions.  It’s all go, go, GO!  They want to get results and they want them yesterday.

The journeyman is all about the process, learning as they go through proper progressions.  They make small changes in habits and stick to them over the long haul.  They understand that they have many many years ahead of them and they would like to enjoy them healthily.  Along with any fat loss or muscle building goals comes the goal of being able to move better and to not be miserable during it.  They want to be able to enjoy life.

So which one are you?  Are you the sprinter, training for the here and now?  Are you the journeyman, training for life?

I would opt for the journeyman.  You want to be able to do what you are doing now, 5, 10, 20 years from now…within reason.   You should be able to do a  push, pull, squat, and deadlift.  Maybe it’s already hit that time that you dont even squat or deadlift because “it hurts your back” or “hurts your knees.”  If that’s the case, it’s time to rethink your training program.

How often are you getting hurt?  Nagging, chronic injuries? More acute, sudden injuries or pain?  Again, maybe time to re-strategize.

Look, starting an exercise program is an awesome idea.  Whether you are looking to build muscle, lose fat, gain strength, get faster,  train for a particular sport, whatever; training is a great idea.  There a a myriad of positives when it comes to exercise, but as with anything, we can get carried away.  Whenever I see people start an exercise program, my first thought is “awesome, it’s great to see people moving and taking care of themselves.”

This leads me to my next point on exercise.  Exercise is not punishment.  That is exercising for the NOW, not for LIFE.  The warm and fuzzy feelings I get from people starting a training program quickly disappears  when you take a look at the approach to exercise that many take.  Unfortunately for many, exercise has become synonymous with punishment, as in “I have to X amount of cardio to make up for the cake I ate” or “OMG I ate so bad this weekend I have to kill myself in the gym this week.”  That negative connection to exercise is often why most people fail in their training endeavors.  They make the mistake of viewing it as punishment, as something negative.  Exercise is something you GET to do, something your ABLE to do.  It provides multiple benefits, physically, emotionally and mentally.

What is your view on exercise?  Or better yet, what constitutes a good workout for you?

For most, it’s about how big of an ass kicking they can get.  They want to crawl out of the gym, be sore for days and leave a pile of sweat and/or puke on the ground.

Exercise should be challenging for sure, but if it has you to the point that you can’t function the next day or day after that, did you really accomplish anything.  Now I’m not saying DOMS isn’t a thing or that you should never feel sore.  That’s not it at all.  Soreness is going to happen.  It’s the bodies response to a new stimulus.  But is that soreness the result of pushing you towards the adaptation you want or further away?

This obsession with being beaten down stems from the fact that there is a misunderstanding with how exercise benefits our body.  We have this preconceived notion that in order to it to work, we should be sweaty, tired, and sore. But it’s not about how much you can sweat; you can just sit in a sauna for that. It’s not how tired it makes you or even about how sore you are the next couple of days.  It comes down to how is it making you better.  Is it bringing you closer to your goal or further away? Really, the biggest indicator of whether it’s working or not is if you’re seeing the results you want.

Part of the blame falls on all the fitsporation that you see on Instagram or Facebook.  Things like:5417951858_62179c3035_bthe_only_workout_you_regret_poster-re476742a6f5a4e4fa0f9451a6ad0905f_wvt_8byvr_324

With garbage like that, its no wonder we have a dysfunctional view of exercise.  All that is BS.  I don’t regret not working out.  What I actually regret is not giving myself recovery days. As I’m typing this, I’m on a recovery week from 12 weeks of intense training with a ton of volume.  I needed a deload week before I jump back to heavy training again.  My body THANKS me for it.  Pain is alerting you that something is wrong and you better fix it or suffer some serious shit.  If you’re pushing through pain, you’re most certainly training for the now and not for life.  So….

Are you exercising for now or for life?