Active Recovery – is it really necessary?

By: Megan Lambert

What do you do on your days off from the gym?

Do you lie on the couch and watch TV all afternoon? Or, do you go to the track and do a sprint workout, thinking, ‘this is recovery because I’m not lifting weights.’ Many people find themselves on either side this spectrum, but in reality, there is a third recovery option that is much more beneficial. To illustrate this point, read the following excerpt from chapter 11 (page 147) of Mark Verstegen’s book, “Core Performance.”

Most fitness programs take an all-or-nothing approach. When you’re training, you train very hard. And when you aren’t training, you do nothing. No matter the circumstances, you do it all or you do nothing.

The problem with that formula is that it fails to facilitate one of the most important aspects of training: the repair of muscles and cells. If you’re sore from a workout, for example, you have two bad choices: Go out and give yourself an equally brutal workout, or do nothing.

In truth, you need to combine quality work with quality rest to get the results you want.

…But regeneration is also a lifestyle philosophy, a recognition that you need to plan ways to recover – mentally and physically – in all areas of your life. You experience the benefit of work on the days you rest.

There is a big difference between rest – doing nothing at all – and “active rest.” In the latter, you take a break from serious training but still do things that benefit your body, such as playing golf, tennis, or basketball. Wednesdays and Saturdays are lighter days of the Core Workout, so you might use those days, and/or Sundays, to play your favorite sport. You’re not training per se, but you’re still getting the benefit of physical activity. Not only that, you’re having fun.

We call it active recovery, because you’re making a modest effort. There’s also passive recovery, which includes getting a massage and sitting in a hot tub or a cold plunge. Both elements of recovery are not only important but also necessary. And not only necessary, but equally important as working out. If you don’t give your body time to recover, it’s never going to improve.

In addition to playing sports, other active recovery options include yoga, Pilates, and low-impact dynamic exercise. To learn how to implement quality rest-day workouts into your exercise protocol, come visit us at Indy Core Fitness & Wellness. We would love to create a personalized program specific to you and your goals. Please visit our website (www.indycorefitness.net) or give us a call (317-430-0063) today.

5 Reasons to Exercise Before your Joint Replacement

By: Megan Lambert

Approximately one million hip and knee replacements are completed by surgeons every year, according to the Mayo Clinic website.

Although joint replacements are major surgeries, there are ways to prepare your body for these operations. For example, here at Indy Core Wellness & Fitness, we write specific exercise protocols to prepare clients for their replacement. These exercises are designed to improve muscle strength and stamina.

In addition to gaining strength, here are five major reasons you should exercise before going under the knife:

  1. You decrease the risk of post-surgery complications

The Wall Street Journal article entitled, “Are you Fit for Surgery?,” speaks to this idea. The thought is that when patients resolve chronic issues such as obesity, diabetes, and smoking, they are physically healthier going into surgery. So, they are less likely to have complications after the operation.

  1. You are less likely to need post-surgery inpatient rehab

A 2006 research study by Daniel Rooks of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center showed that patients who exercised six weeks prior to surgery were 73 percent less likely to need inpatient rehab after the surgery.

  1. You will save money

Less post-surgery rehab equals less money spent. Yay!

  1. You decrease your risk of post-surgery injury

After a hip or knee replacement, you will need to use more of your upper body strength to transfer yourself from one place to another. By strengthening the muscles of your upper body, you decrease the risk of falling while transporting yourself. Consequently, you also reduce the risk of injuring yourself while rehabbing from another injury.

  1. You better tolerate the surgical anesthetic

Cardiovascular training, which can include exercises such as walking, biking, rowing, using the elliptical, etc. strengthens your heart and lungs. Healthier essential organs help your body better tolerate the rigors of surgery such as the anesthetic.

Voodoo Flossing: the contemporary approach to injury

By: Megan Lambert

What is voodoo flossing?

Contrary to your first impression, voodoo flossing is a modern method of injury rehabilitation, workout recovery, and joint mobilization, not a medieval torture device.

In essence, it is an extreme form of compression. Pressure is applied to an area of the body using a thin, stretchy band like the one shown below.

floss

Once, lets say, your ankle is wrapped with the voodoo wrap, all you have to do is perform normal movement patterns. For example, one would walk forwards and backwards, do body weight squats and calf raises, while wearing the wrap.

After leaving the band on for up to two minutes, the band is removed and normal blood flow is restored to the area.

This modality is useful for athletes recovering from workouts, individuals rehabbing tendon or ligament injuries, and anyone striving to attain greater joint mobility.

Why do you use flossing?

It’s no secret that your body’s tendons and ligaments have a smaller blood supply than your muscles. These connective tissues receive less oxygen and nutrients from the blood, so when injury occurs, it takes longer for the tissues to heal. One way to help these tissues heal faster is by increasing the blood flow to the area. Enter voodoo flossing.

Wrapping the flossing band around the injured area limits the amount of blood that can enter the area. When the wrap is removed, the blood rushes back into that area of the body. Not only does this bring a greater amount of blood to the area than before, but it also brings with it more oxygen and nutrients.

How does Indy Core use flossing?

Recently, we used flossing to alleviate peroneal tendon pain for one of our clients. At the risk of sounding like a boring anatomy professor, this tendon is located on the lateral side of the leg and runs from the head of the fibula, down the leg and inserts near the base of the big toe. After examining his leg, we discovered that the source of the pain was in the peroneal and calf muscles, not behind in his ankle where he felt the most discomfort.

Consequently, we wrapped the band around his upper calf (like the picture below) where we felt the most scar tissue and tissue adhesion.

floss-2

After approximately two minutes of walking backwards and forwards and doing squats and stretches, the client took the band off and felt relief from the pain. This is just one example of how we utilize this modality in our practice every day.

Thank you for reading and stay tuned for a video detailing more about flossing.

For more information about how you can utilize flossing in your workouts, call Indy Core at (317) 430-0063.