Ruth – Train Like an Athlete, Get Treated Like an Athlete
This week has been full and interesting. At Taekwondo this week, I worked hard and caught up to my son in our form. I still have a little more to learn before we test for our next belt in a few weeks.
We also went to ProgressiveHealth and did a PhysiMax test. My basic understanding of this, is that they use it with athletes to find weakness and how to improve them…I am pretty sure this a simplistic explanation of the process. I had a lot of fun doing this, they used a camera that connects to a computer program. The program then locks onto, I guess your major joints (shoulders, hips, knees, etc.) and make a little stick figure of you (the camera also takes real time pictures of you doing the exercises). The trainer then has you do a few exercises, jumping from the top a box with a vertical jump after you land, some one legged squats, and a one legged jump where you have to stick the landing (I was wobbly on my landing). He then took all the information from those, combined with my height/weight and probably more mathematics then my brain could handle to figure out where my weak spots are.
With all this information that they have pulled together, Progressive Health can help tailor a work out regime that will help to improve the weaker areas they have found. For me….that is my core, which doesn’t really surprise me. It’s always something I need to work. I do know that when my core is stronger I feel so much better; I sit up straighter, my hips and knees hurt less, & my feet turn in less.
This week was a win for me! My ultimate goal is to get my 1 mile walk/run down to under 20 minutes. The River Run website says you need to maintain a 20minute mile to make it across the bridge by the designated time….so if I can get under 20 minutes I should be good. At training this past Saturday, I made my 2 miles (plus a smidge more) right at 40 minutes. I then went and did another 1.5 miles in 21 minutes. Think I might just be able to this thing!
This week started off with a lot of cross training. Unfortunately with work if I am traveling from a far distance I do not get home until dark so I have to adjust my training. I ran a couple times throughout the week as well as incorporated Zumba, core exercises, and weight training. On Friday afternoon, I got to feel like an Olympic athlete and undergo a PhysiMax assessment with our therapy partner, ProgressiveHealth. PhysiMax is used to evaluate muscle group’s stability and offer corrective training as well as identify and prevent injuries by movement testing. This was a unique experience in the fact that I thought I would excel due to my many years of being active when in fact; I found that I was weak in several areas. At the conclusion of my assessment, I was given exercises to work on strengthening my weak areas and am eager to look into things further.
On my Saturday run, I met up with my fellow River Run participants at Ultimate Fit to determine whether my body was ready to run 5 miles. At the beginning of my run I felt great, until I got to 3.5 mile mark. At that time the similar symptoms of a hip strain and my right foot going numb and pain occurred. Too embarrassed to stop, I kept running and pushed through. Luckily, we were re-tracing our steps at that point so I knew how much longer it would be until we go back to Ultimate Fit.
I was told during my cross county days that I did not push myself until I had the feeling of stomach upset/vomiting. My sister would have instances of this during her races but I never had this feeling until Saturday. I pushed myself to the limit and finished 5 miles, knowing that I would feel 10 times worse the later that evening and through the the next day.
It’s week three! Still going strong, still making progress…… or so I thought. As part of our ambassador experience we are put through a session with the people from PhysiMax. PhysiMax is a real time biomechanical analysis of how you move, how efficiently you move and areas you are at risk for possible injury in your lower extremities. They measured my movements from jumping off of a box, single leg squat and single leg hop. The hardest on was the single leg squat, still feel that one! They gave me a print out of my results and corresponding exercises to improve those areas. Most of the exercises look good and something I can really do on a pretty regular basis, others (plank with your feet on an exercise ball) I’ll have to modify or get a spotter. C.J. our PhysiMax manager and therapist, also said they can help with some of the exercises I’m concerned with and we can modify them if needed. It was a great experience, I highly recommend it for people who are wanting more from your fitness experience or get injured a lot and really need to find out why. So I’ll be adding these exercise to my existing routine and I’m confident I’ll be able to make it to the finish line!
Katie – Boom, Clap, The Sound of My Thighs
Over the last week, we had the opportunity to meet with ProgressiveHealth and partake in PhysiMax Assessments. We were given a brief explanation of what we would be doing during this assessment; things like jumping off a small box, bending, and squatting, while they evaluated our movements. “Oh that sounds super simple,” I tell myself.
Have you ever tried to do one legged squats? Let me tell you, IT AIN’T EASY. I was wobbling all over the place, not to mention the burn in my butt was unreal. I hate squats (which is why my booty is not poppin’). I’m not going to lie, I really struggled. But boom, clap, the sound of my thighs cheered me on and kept me going. I was surprised at how much of this assessment had to do with our balance—it makes sense, that our core strength is a huge contributor to our over all balance and endurance, I just didn’t expect to feel like a gymnast; trying to hop and stick my landing. If only my younger years of gymnastics would have prepared me better. However, as a 6 year old, I think I was more excited about the sparkly leotards than actual gymnastics practice; I spent way too much time twirling in front of the mirror than practicing my bunny hops on the balance beam. I’ve always been a diva—I even got a spray tan the night before our Physimax Assessments because I knew I’d be wearing shorts. But according to Queen Bey, “A diva is the female version of a hustla’” so… there’s no shame in my game.
I swear, technology completely blows my mind these days. The ProgressiveHealth team showed us our movement readings on their computer, and the system pulled up individual exercises for each of us to work on to strengthen our weak areas. All from just hopping up and down! Isn’t that cray?! It was very cool to watch them replay our movements in slow motion, analyzing what we should be doing instead of how we were doing it. I’m super excited to start working on my new exercises—especially to strengthen my core. I know that as I become stronger, I’ll be able to run farther, and grow my muscles in the correct way, to decrease soreness and fatigue. I’m also very prone to injury, and the last thing I need right now is to twist or sprain my ankle because I’m not training properly. One time, I fell down the steps at the river front on the 4th of July, sprained my ankle, and was escorted out by an ambulance—but that’s a story for another time.