Author: Writer

The Importance of Massage After A Long Run

Whether you’re a newbie trying to piece together a running routine the will work for you or an experienced distance runner who just wants to recover faster, a massage will do wonders for you. You don’t even have to worry about past injuries or a lack of flexibility, a concern mostly by people who get a Thai massage.

Elite runners swear by the massage as evidenced by massage therapists as a fixture in their team during training and at the race. Even in public races, many participants line up to get a good post-run massage outside the massage therapy tent.

A massage, like the popular deep tissue massage, will feel really good if you’re a runner. Marathoners, sprinters, or recreational runners have all reported that their muscles feel less tight after a race and they can move their legs better.

The muscle movement during a run actually adheres to this principle. Long distance runs make muscles contract repeatedly to proper you forward. The more force and the longer you use those muscles the more these muscle fiber have to work. It is the reason why runners can run for long distances depending on their training and experience.

Trail runners can sometimes experience even more stress on their leg muscles on a run. Not only do these athletes run a long distance but they also have to deal with uneven terrain and other natural obstacles making their muscles work even harder.

The repeated contractions and muscle fatigue causes the muscles to shorten or become tight once a runner is done with the activity. It also means that the muscles are compressed together which makes it harder for blood to flow more fluidly to the tissues and makes them a little less flexible.

During a massage, the rubbing actually allows the muscles to relax and slowly elongate back to its normal state. This removes the tightness, improve the mobility of the muscle, and facilitate better blood flow to the area.

Physiologically, massage therapy actually has a relieving effect to the entire human body. Aside from improved circulation, the body is allowed to relax which translates to wider blood vessel diameter and lower blood pressure.

This relief will have a significant effect to anyone who gets a massage. However, for active people like runners the relieving effect might be more profound. Massage therapy for runner can actually mean faster muscle and injury recovery which will translate to their performance on the track.

Runners should always opt to get the full treatment so that they can feel all the benefits of massage therapy. This kind of massage digs deep down on muscle tissue to apply some corrective measures on it for muscle repair and maintenance. It’s a bit different than massages you get from spas and massage parlors because the people who carry out these methods are well-trained and have a license.

You must also remember that a massage is not a one-time miracle method for the aches and pains you feel after a run. This kind of therapy however has a cumulative effect which means you must get multiple massages to allow your body to recover fully.

A scheduled massage therapy routine would be your best bet in getting all its benefits. Consult with your doctor, listen to your body, and weigh it along with your budget when you come up with your recovery program. This will allow you to get the most out of your massage.

The Best Music when Running

There has been some discussion around the effectiveness of listening to music while running. Some would say that when runners listen to music when running, they don’t give themselves the chance to connect with the surroundings, which is a good part of the sport.

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However, on the positive side, many runners would agree that having their playlist while running helped them a lot in so many ways. Some studies even show that music provides a positive influence to runners, motivating them and excites them in a way that they don’t feel tired and fatigue.

The Benefits

As you can see, almost 95 percent of runners wear headphones. In spite of some negative implication that some experts suggest that it might not be as helpful, runners became music lovers. There are several benefits that you can get when you run with your playlist on.

Run easy. Many runners say that when they run with music, it makes to run easier. It also lessens the feeling of tiredness and fatigue. One study even shows, that running with music on can reduce the perception of how hard the run by about ten percent.

Boost the mood. The music itself is known to excite and brings happiness to the one listening. Thus, when you’re running with music, it will definitely boost your mood, giving you more energy and the drive to run better and reach your destination with pride.

Improves performance. It’s probably true that runners who listen to music perform better than those who don’t. But yes, listening to music can definitely help to improve your performance since it stimulates every part of your body, giving you more drive to do best.

Running Music Playlist Ideas

According to Runner’s World, here are the top songs to consider when running:

  1. Lose Yourself by Eminem
  2. Thunderstruck by AC/DC
  3. Eye of the Tiger by Survivor
  4. Dog Days Are Over by Florence and the Machine
  5. Beautiful Day by U2
  6. Til I Collapse by Eminem
  7. Born to Run by Bruce Springsteen
  8. Runnin’ Down a Dream by Tom Petty

 

More Tips

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Listening while running can be beneficial, but you should also be sure about your safety. Since you got your headphones on, you might not be able to see what’s around you. You are on your own music world, which might put you in danger. When you’re running with headphones, be aware, especially when you’re a road runner. Your safety is the most important thing above all.

In choosing the best music, there’s really no particular rule to follow. Whether you go for classic or vintage, hip hop or something very soothing, it’s up to your own taste. You can just consider something that will put your mind and body at ease.  You also would go for something upbeat, where you can run in sync with the rhythm.

There are too many songs that you can choose from when running. If you haven’t tried putting on headphones when running, maybe it’s time for you to make a difference. Improve your running experience and feel no stress!

 

What Are The Best Knee Braces For Running?

Running is probably one of the easiest and the most common exercises that many of us do to burn some fat. Evidently, running is such an effective way to lose weight and improve your strength. It’s also a perfect cardio exercise that can help keep your heart healthy.

runner

However, other than all the benefits that running can offer, it can also cause knee injury.   For people who have been physically active for years, their knees are very vulnerable to getting strained. That’s where you might find knee braces useful.

But do you know what’s the best knee brace to use for running is? Here are some of the tips and ideas that you might want to consider.

Knee Braces Options

Just like any other sport supports, you need to use the right knee braces according to what you’re going to use it for. For running, there are several types that would work for you.

Knee Pads

They normally have a hard outer cover and additional padding which can be wrapped around your knee in order to reduce the possibility of injury. You can often see people wearing knee pads when playing volleyball, skateboarding and even when biking.

Knee Sleeves

Knee sleeves are used to treat swelling, after injury. Its main purpose is to provide compression, support and even warmth all over the knee. It normally has an opening on the kneecap, which you can slide over your knee.

Hinged Knee Braces

Obviously, this type of brace has hinges on its sides and straps to make sure that it holds in place. It provides the perfect support and knee stability. It can be made of either metal or plastic, adjustable enough to limit the extent of movement that you’re doing.

 

Patellar Bands

This is the most common knee brace support that many runners are using. It should be placed in between the bump of your shin and the bottom of the kneecap. It works by applying pressure on the tendons, relieving too much stress.

Choosing the Best Knee Brace

With all the many options for knee braces, you probably don’t really know what to get for yourself. However, you just have to consider some factors for you to be able to find the right option for you. One is to consider the kind of support that you need. Consider how intensely do you run. It should go with the level of support, injury and protection that you need.

Some people have overlooked the fact that they need to consider the absorbency of the brace. Choose the one which is made of a fabric that doesn’t hold much moisture. The most common cause of blisters is when the fabric rubs against your skin. Next is to consider the cost. Knowing that there are many types of knee braces today, their cost can vary. It should always be within your budget.

Lastly, don’t forget to visit your doctor for advice and suggestions. If you are trying to heal a knee injury or just wanted to avoid one, make sure that you get the help of a professional to be sure that you’re using the right one that suits your needs.

Golfing Competitively? Why Staying in Shape Is Important

This might come out as stating the obvious but, in golf, staying in shape is important if you are aiming towards becoming a competitive golf player. If you are in the amateur side of golfing, you know you should be taking some golf lessons to increase your skills.  But doing some workout and cardio will help you keep up with the competitive level.

Why is it so important to stay in shape while you play golf?  There are several reasons for this:

Golf requires a lot of time

Sometimes, golf games can easily take one full day to complete.  This means that, although it is true you will probably not get any strenuous activity during the duration of the game, you will be at least stay standing up and walking for a long time.  This kind of activity does require you to be fit and in good shape.  Your body must be able to endure it without giving your feet excess work.  To this, you must add the long distances that you will need to move across the course.

Your swing must be good

Having a winning swing is not only about strength but also about concentration.  You should be able to easily control the force you apply when hitting the ball.  The muscles that you usually use during a swing include the latissimus dorsi, the rhomboids, the serratus anterior, the rotator cuff and several others.  These muscles must be up and toned ready for your next swing.   These muscles also help to protect the shoulder muscles from reaching their end point.  Meaning that, if your muscles are not in good tone, they might suffer injuries.  The excess application of force with these muscles might also cause some soreness.  All these conditions can be prevented if you are including a great fit program to your practice.

Stay up for the game all the time

Being always ready for the big game is very important to always remain in the professional level.  If you are already in a fitness program to stay in shape, you know all the efforts you have to make to reach an optimum level and how easy it is to go back to being out of shape.  This is why you should always dedicate some quality time to your shape.

Golf in itself is not a sport that will provide you all the necessary workout for you to stay at the top of your game.  However, there are other activities, such as hiking and running, that will help you stay in shape and maintain your golf level once you have become a professional.

 

 

Recommended Exercises For After a Long Run

Who doesn´t love taking long runs for an intense exercise?  These activities are invigorating, let alone fun.  But it does not have to end there.  Probably the one thing you want to do after a long run is take a long break.  But this is not recommended as you should not put your body to an immediate halt right after strenuous exercise and cardio.  So soothe down your body and stretch it with these exercises right after running:

Walk

This is practically a must after a long run.  Remember that your body must cool down gradually and not abruptly.  After you have made your 5- or 10-km run, for instance, a walk for a last kilometer will do wonders.  Your muscles are warm and pretty elastic;  a short walk will  help your muscles get back to normalcy in a smooth way.

Stretch

There are several stretching exercises you can put into practice.  They are simple and will not cause you any pain (If they do, seek professional advice.). Here are some stretching exercises you can try:

  • Thigh stretch.- While standing, hold your right foot behind you and bring your toes towards your left buttock to stretch the thigh.  Repeat with the other leg.
  • Hip flexor stretch.- Move your left foot forward, both feet facing forward.  Place  your hands on your hips. Keeping your back straight and without bending it, slowly push your buttock forward bending your left knee and keeping your right one straight and the foot flat against the floor. You must feel the stretch across the front of your hips.
  • Calf stretch.- This one is similar to the one above, except that you stretch the leg you left on the back until you feel the stretch on your back.
  • ITB stretch.- To do this, cross your legs, left behind the right. Bend your body towards the right and hold for 15 seconds.  Repeat changing legs.

Use a foam roller

A foam roller can be used at any time and for any kind of working out.  The use of the foam roller is with the purpose of avoiding the build-up of fascia on your muscles.  Foam rolling is relaxing and is a good addition to your post-running routine. Make sure you pick the best fitness foam roller that adapts to your needs and level of expertise.

  • Thoracic rolling.- This will help relax your spine and prevent back pains.  Simply rest your back against the roller and slide up and down.
  • Quad rolling.- To release those quads, place your thighs against the roller on the floor.  To add to the stretch, use a band to pull your leg back while you are rolling back and forth.  Repeat with the other leg.

Feel good and make your body work the best.  Complete your long-running exercise with a good set of cooling down exercises.

Trail Running Training: Run with Ultralight Gear

Trail running is increasing in popularity not only in the UK but in many other parts of Europe and North America.  More and more people are getting into the excitement of ascending and descending trails on hills.  Championships are being organized all over many places and trails range from 5 km to 100-mile super marathons.  It is easy to see that the practicing of this activity requires a lot of energy input and much stamina.

Trail running or mountain running (as it is best known in the UK) is a fascinating activity that will surely allow to drop off stress and make you fit.  You actually need to stay fit in order to keep up to the game.

You already know what type of shoes you must wear; the rigid type that will protect your from jagged stones and will keep you safe on uncharted ground.  But it is also important that you wear some other gear that is ultralight.

Many eventualities may occur in a trail.  You are far from home and you probably are planning on a whole day activity. Therefore, it is necessary to be prepared with stuff you might need.  The First thing is to make sure you trail in company and not by yourself.  In this way, you can split carrying supplies among the team members.

Remember that if you do not want to get tired easily, you must be effective at packing up for a 5-10 km trail.  Find the best ultralight gear at Ultralightcamp.com.  You will find the best and lightest parts to make your mountain running a truly satisfying experience.

Keep yourself light as you will be going up and up along your trail.  You have to possess a great endurance but this does not mean you should add more weight to yourself.  The lighter you pack, the more you will take advantage of the exercise.  Keep in mind that you are not testing your muscular resistance here but rather your cardio resistance.

Trail running is a great activity and what a better way to practice it than with the lightest gear possible.  You will definitively have to carry some important supplies with you as you run.  Water being the most vital.

For much longer marathons and organized events, you have the advantage of having some water and food stations along every 5 km of trail.  But even then, carry light packs to make your exercise about the running and not about the carrying.  Enjoy this growing activity and be active as much as you can, keeping your supplies light and effective.

Biathlon: Running is Still the Best Physical Conditioning

Physical conditioning is one of the aspects you should focus on when you are planning to compete for a biathlon. More than accuracy when using the best air rifle to shoot a target at a required kilometer range, one must be able to physically stand strenuous activities in extreme weather conditions.

People from sunny, warm states who compete in a biathlon usually have difficulties adjusting to immense low temperature, especially in locations where thermal readings drop below zero. Most often than not, this reason hinders some to compete in the said event. Freezing temperature has certain effects on the human body. You must be well conditioned prior and during a biathlon competition.

Effects of Extreme Cold Climate on the Body

  • Alters Metabolism

Have you noticed how you shiver when the weather is cold? That’s your body trying to warm up in order to compensate with the low temperature. In cold climate, there is a significant increase in metabolism due to the increase demand in energy level. If you are not physically fit or properly conditioned, there is a tendency for fatigability or body malaise.

  • Muscle Stiffness

Compared to other sports, athletes participating in biathlon should set their body to a higher level of functioning. Cold climate has a way of inflicting sudden muscle discomfort, especially if they have existing joint conditions. The muscles tend to stiff, losing their flexibility. This can lead to injury and fatal accidents.

  • Decrease Agility

Athletes who are not well conditioned for the event can lose their agility freezing climate. Even though a competitor is proficient in shooting and has a high end rifle from Air Rifle Pro, it won’t do him any good if he shivers in the midst of aiming and shooting. Getting used to the climate is immensely important to avoid this situation.

  • Decrease Oxygen Consumption

High altitude has low oxygen levels leading to breathlessness. When this happens, the vital organs of the body are unable to function well. Without allowing the body to adapt to this kind of circumstances, there is a high probability of system failure. Thus, it is a requirement to train the body at all cost so that it can easily adjust to extreme temperature.

So what is the Best Conditioning? Running!

 

  • Running Conditions the Heart

You always hear that running is good for the heart – that is so true. By making the heart pump at its maximum rate, it enables to develop and strengthen the myocardial muscle. Due to this, the muscle is conditioned to tolerate extreme activities and physical stress that you will be facing during a biathlon competition. Compared to any cardiovascular exercises, running still proves to be the best work out of the heart.

  • Running Conditions the Lungs

I hope you are aware of the significant role of the lungs in oxygenating the whole body. Thus, it is very important to condition these organs. Running does not only enhance the lungs elasticity and capacity, it also regulates your breathing pattern. Proper conditioning of the lungs helps you to easily adjust your breathing and respiratory function in high altitudes where the air has low levels of oxygen.

  • Running Conditions the Muscle

When you are running, your muscles are being worked out. This is essential when you need to develop certain muscle group so you can ski faster and efficiently. Running conditions the muscles to prevent stiffening in cold climate and it also strengthens the muscle to endure the strenuous physical activity you are about to tackle.

  • Running Conditions the Bones

With every step when you are running there is a high impact that confronts the bones. This stimulates the development of healthy bone mass, which is much needed when you are serious about joining a biathlon.

  • Running Conditions the Metabolism

Metabolism and energy expenditure are related. Whenever you cover longer distances when you are running, your metabolism increases. This is the reason why people who engage in this type of activity are able to lose or maintain a healthy weight. It is the same reason how the body conditions itself for proper utilization for energy.

  • Running Conditions the Mind

Running does not only condition the body physically, but mentally as well. According to research, running aids in the creation of new neuron connections in the brain and also stimulates growth of new cells. This leads to better mental function, which also needed in competing in biathlon.

  • Running Conditions the Emotions

I am sure that you heard that running has been proven to reduce stress and anxiety. It combats depression and improves confidence. Whenever you are running, the body releases endorphins, which is also known as the happy hormone. In any sports or competition, being calm and stress free allows focus, enhances the proper body functioning and emotional stability.

This is just a short list why running is still the best physical conditioning before joining a biathlon or any sports for that matter. With all the benefits you can enjoy form running, this should be a regular thing that you should do with or without a competition. Good luck with your training.

Do You Want to Get in Shape? Hire a Qualified Trainer!

Have you ever noticed that every time a New Year starts people make goals or resolutions and one of them is to get in shape and improve their overall health and wellness. But, how many of them succeed in their goals? A few, right?

I am sure that you are wondering why people fail when it comes to improving their physique? Having a healthy body is simple – eat right, exercise right and live right. But, I guess, it’s easier said than done. The best thing you can do right now if you really want to get that sexy physique you’ve been dreaming of, is to hire a “qualified” personal trainer. Thus, what makes a personal trainer qualified? Read on.

Cognition

Anyone can claim to be a personal trainer, but the best way to determine his knowledge about fitness and health is through his educational background. A personal trainer should at least have a bachelor’s or master’s degree in the related field. The degree will verify whether he has an in-depth knowledge about the human body, nutrition, exercise programming and biomechanics. He must be aware that every person is unique and must know how to come up with an individualized lifestyle design suitable for his clients.

Certification

There are many certifying agencies today, but be skeptical about where a personal trainer get his credentials. Not all certification programs are reputable and some are just hoaxes. An authentic personal trainer garnered his certification from the best certifying organizations and had passed both the written and practical exams.

Experience

The personal trainer you intended to hire must have the amount of experience of assisting other people successfully achieve their wellness and health. This will be a good indication that he possesses the skills and expertise to lead you towards your fitness goals. A personal trainer must know every detail of weight management from the simple proper running technique to complex routine exercises and how starving yourself wouldn’t do good in achieving your fitness goals. So ask around and do your own research on the most qualified personal trainer in your area that can help you change your life for the better.

Sincerity

A personal trainer should be sincere in helping other people. He must have an enthusiastic attitude in improving people’s lives through health and wellness. These characteristics indicate that he is dedicated to your success and will always be there to motivate you until you attain the healthy body that you always wanted.

People fail in their fitness goals for a number of reasons. Some may lack the interest or lose the desire to have a healthy lifestyle because there is no one to motivate and push them to their limits. A qualified personal trainer like the ones in Thrive Fitness  will help you accomplish all your fitness goals. I am confident that the right fitness expert cannot only help you to get in shape, but also help you be a better person.

How Running Will Make You a Better Baseball Player

For many baseball players, training and proper exercises are vital. Professional athletes even spend most of their time in trainings and work out. These workouts and exercises help them improve their strength and condition them for a better playing performance.

In order to gain the right strength and power, each player should go into some series of exercises, often lead by a coach. With baseball, batting power and speed should be the main focus when training. Given that, what possible exercises a beginner baseball player should focus on?

Running and Baseball

If there’s one thing that you need to be good at when playing baseball, that is running in short distance speed. Baseball does not require long distance run; it only requires a short burst of speed from one base to another. You only need a few seconds of sprint to make it to the next base.

 

However, regular running exercises are still needed for you to achieve the stamina and the good cardio power when playing baseball. You need to learn how to run fast in the span of seconds. And you definitely can’t do that if you don’t condition your body with constant and regular running workouts.

The majority of the running exercises for baseball players is to learn how to utilize all the muscles of your feet. If you want to know how to run faster, you need to stop running slow. Do some series of sprints daily and gain that leg strength that you need.

Be a Better Baseball Player

What are the basic things that you must do when playing baseball?  Run faster, hit the ball harder and throw it right! That sounds so easy, right? Anyone can play baseball, but not all can do it better, or best. If you are aiming to be a better baseball player, make sure to learn the craft well and train without ceasing.

 

Thus, other than wishing to have the best baseball bat, you also need to work your way on how to hit that ball really hard. And after hitting that ball really hard, you also need to train on how to run faster. Not to forget about practicing on how to catch the ball right. There are more to baseball than just batting, and that’s what you need to be better at.

Why Choose Baseball?

There are many good reasons why baseball is considered as the most favorite past time in the US.  You can even witness some amateur baseball tournaments in many different schools and some families even make it a perfect bonding sport where all family members can play it altogether.

Comparing it to any other sports, baseball seems to be a less expensive option. It also does not require too much strength to exert when playing. But still a perfect sport to play even for kids. Just make sure that you tone your body in the best way possible.

Performing the right exercises is very much important for baseball players. Address whatever physical imbalances you may have. Keep a strong feet and arms to improve your game. And don’t forget about the power of regular running to improve you in all possible ways!

Stop Running from the Truth – Why a Personal Trainer Can Help You Run Effectively to Lose Weight

It seems that the easiest way most people know how to lose those nasty extra pounds is through running. For some reason it has been a go-to-exercise for the general population. You can see people running everywhere in the hope of shedding off those extra fats. And sometimes it such a pity to watch their efforts go to waste because they make a lot of mistakes and are unaware of the proper running technique. If you are running because you enjoy it, then that’s great! You can use any form you are comfortable with. But if you are running to lose weight, then it’s time to stop running from the truth, you need a personal trainer to guide you.

Why Your Running Technique Doesn’t Help You Lose Weight

Running can help you lose weight as long as you are doing it right. When you started running, you might have noticed that you lost some pounds. However, after quite some time, you don’t see any effect anymore. That is because you have reached a plateau. You need to diversify your running technique and add intensity to it. At Soul Fitness Personal Training, a fitness expert can help you do that safely without overworking and harming your body. Bear in mind that if you want to drop in size constantly you have to keep running farther and farther. This is quite difficult if there is no one to motivate you. Again, hiring a personal trainer can come in handy when you need someone to push you to your limits.

How a Personal Trainer’s Technique in Running will Help You Attain a Healthy Physique

“The bottom line to proper running technique is to work with your body rather than against it.”

~ Anonymous

 Different individuals have different body needs. Thus, there are also different mechanics required when running. Plus, there are also some key principles and techniques that a fitness expert can teach you in order for you to run more efficiently to be able to lose weight and prevent the occurrence of injuries.

Don’t be stuck in mindless running and stop torturing yourself for a little reward. Opt for a private fitness with a personal trainer and level up your running techniques, then watch yourself achieve a healthy body and an awesome physique.

Watch this short video of Do’s and Don’ts of Running