People claim to work out. They claim to go to the gym all the time. They even boast that they spend hours running, or cycling, or ellipticalling (is that even word, i think i just made it up). Or better yet, climbing stairs to nowhere, that’s even better. However, what I see is a lot of peoples ability to walk or pedal, and watch TV or read all at the same time.
Sorry to break the news to all those people out there that think this is working out or exercise. Its is in no way shape or form working out. All that proves is your ability to “pat your head and rub your stomach at the same time.”
To really qualify as a workout, there needs to be some sort of intent, some sort of goal. You need to be working towards a physical adaptation and it needs to be somewhat strenuous. What are you trying to accomplish in your workout? Figure out who’s sleeping with who in Hollywood? Walking on the treadmill, reading the latest issue US Weekly does not make a workout. What do you find strenuous about walking on the treadmill while holding on to the handrails? Really? You’re gonna hold on while you walk? When in life do you walk while holding onto something unless you’re on crutches, have a cane, or a walker. No, during “natural,” “normal” movement, the arms swing in a contralateral fashion, or left leg steps out, right arm swings with it.
I know I’m picking on the treadmill, but its the most commonly used machine in a gym and where I see a lot of problems. The main focus of a majority of gym goers is not their workout, it’s catching up on a book, or watching the news, or whatever other crap happens to be on the television. And you see these same people day after day, week after week, and after a year they look the same if not worse. Why is that? Because their focus isn’t on the task at hand. 100% focus should be on your workout, on creating some sort of biological response. That’s how you reach your goals. Too many people see the gym and especially the “cardio deck” as something to do while they entertain themselves. They figure if I’m gonna watch TV anyway, might as well move. Yea, that’s not a workout. That’s walking and chewing gum at the same time. Congrats on doing two things at once. But don’t brag about your “workout.”
Next time you’re at the gym, do yourself a favor, leave the book or magazine at home, ignore the TV overhead(or newer machines have TVs on them) and put 100% focus into your workout. You’d be amazed at your results.
That’s my cardio rant. Stay tuned for a little rant on how people resistance train.
If more people picked heavy crap up, and then put it down, we’d have a healthier society. Instead we have all this selectorized equipment for isolating each muscle group. Guess what!! Thats not how the body moves. The body moves in a series of contractions of multiple major muscle groups and smaller, stabilizing muscle groups. Seriously go out and lift heavy crap up, put it down, and repeat. That is your exercise prescription.
At Active Movement and Performance, the ability to move freely is key. We are all about developing correct movement patterns and re-teaching your body its natural mechanics. We use tools like the ViPR, TRX, kettlebell, and the Cross-Core along with body-weight exercises to develop a well rounded workout that focuses on movement and gets you to increase your performance. The better and more efficient your body moves, the better you feel and the better you’ll perform. With that said, we have no machines. Nothing is in a fixed point. Being tied down to a machine hinders our ability to move properly through space. Want proof? The constant use of machines can affect strength and balance as this study shows. In this study, results show balance and strength are severely decreased when using a fixed machine as opposed to a free form exercise. Why hinder your strength gains by going from machine to machine when you can work in three planes of motion all the time. More Movement = More Calories Burned! Why sit at a machine when you can teach your body to move properly. Not only do fixed machines force you into a sitting position(AGAIN), they do not take into account your bodies natural range of motion. No one person is made the same way, and many people lack the range of motion for such machines. Take the shoulder press machine at your local gym. Fixed range of motion, and if you are like most of the public, you sit all day, hunched at a computer, decreasing your shoulders ability to go overhead. Then you hit this machine, that you clearly have no business being on, and all of the sudden you kill your shoulder. Inefficient!! Back to that sitting thing. Why would you go to work all day, SIT at a desk, only to get into your car, SIT at the wheel and SIT in traffic, to drive to the gym where you SIT at a stationary bike, or SIT and go from machine to machine. In a previous post, we highlighted a study that showed that sitting for long periods of time leads to an increase in health risks. It actually became a top story on Yahoo! and Good Morning America(Stand Up!) at one point. You have the ability to limit how much you sit. The gym is the one place you can avoid sitting if you just focus on movement. Or better yet, since summer is here, just go outside and enjoy the beautiful weather. Isn’t it a strange concept to drive to the gym, walk on a treadmill or ride a stationary bike, and then just leave. Guess what? You could walk outside( talk about a daily dose of Vitamin D) or ride a bike outside. There are plenty of parks especially in the Massapequa area. Hit up the Preserve!! Better yet, come to Active Movement and Performance, test out our new program called “Strengthio” to maximize your training efforts. We don’t do cardio, we just lift weights faster. We’ll also combine mobility, strength training, conditioning, and flexibility into a structured fun, yet challenging training session.
AMP stands for Active, Movement and Performance. Less people are active and it is our philosophy that people do not move anymore. We are all tied down to chairs, and because of that, our society has become hunched over, obese, and unable to move properly. How many people in our society cannot move through basic patterns of squatting, lunging, or twisting. We have the inability to lift our arms over our shoulders, move our hips, and triple extend through the ankles!! The inability to move leads to the inability to be healthy. Performance could be anything. It doesn’t necessarily mean sports performance. Life is a constant battle to perform. The more efficient you move, the more you are active, the better you’ll perform, whether it be sports or just life.
Research shows that the more you sit, the more likely you are to die early. sitting = death. If you’re a science dork, or a statistics kind of person, you’ll get a kick out of this study. Basically the more you sit, or the more sedentary you are, the higher mortality rate.
So do yourself a favor, keep coming back to this blog for more tips and get AMPed!! Get Active, Get Moving, and Perform!