exercise

Exercise May Improve Memory

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For many Americans, January is a time to set goals concerning exercise for weight loss and heart health. Now there may be one more reason to exercise – to improve memory.

According to a study by the Mayo Clinic, a new guideline for medical practitioners recommends twice-weekly exercise for people with mild cognitive impairment to improve memory and thinking.

“Regular physical exercise has long been shown to have heart health benefits, and now we can say exercise also may help improve memory for people with mild cognitive impairment,” says Ronald Petersen, M.D., Ph.D., lead author, director of the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center, Mayo Clinic, and the Mayo Clinic Study of Aging. “What’s good for your heart can be good for your brain.” Dr. Petersen is the Cora Kanow Professor of Alzheimer’s Disease Research.

Petersen defines mild cognitive impairment as “an intermediate stage between the expected cognitive decline of normal aging and the more serious decline of dementia. Symptoms can involve problems with memory, language, thinking and judgment that are greater than normal age-related changes.”

Read the complete article here:  https://newsnetwork.mayoclinic.org/discussion/new-guideline-try-exercise-to-improve-memory-thinking/

 

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Who has time to exercise?!?

“You may not have time to go to the gym, but you can still be physically active and boost your metabolism by using a bit of creativity in planning your day. I also asked some personal trainers for their advice. We came up with the following ways to fit exercise into a packed-full day:

  1. If you’ve got a young sports enthusiast in the family, play along. Shooting baskets and kicking a soccer ball around the yard are great ways to get your heart pumping. Thirty minutes of cardio training are recommended, but even five to 10 minutes will elevate your energy and speed your metabolism.

  2. Take the kids for a walk or just go by yourself. If their pace is too slow, add some lunges, jumping jacks, or running in place every few minutes to make yourself work harder.

  3. Pull young children in a wagon through the neighborhood. Or give them a ride in a jogging stroller.

  4. Let little children ride bicycles or tricycles while you jog behind.

  5. Get into some vigorous sweeping, mopping, or vacuuming. These types of housekeeping chores can burn a significant number of calories.

  6. We’ve all heard the benefits of taking the stairs instead of the elevator. Everything you’ve heard is true.

  7. Likewise, getting off the bus or subway a stop or two before your destination on a regular basis adds up to a lot of heart-healthy walking.

  8. Do yoga or Pilates while you, or the kids, unwind in front of a movie. While watching TV, do push-ups or sit-ups during commercials. Even one per commercial during a two-hour movie can give you some good exercise.

  9. In a sedentary job, take your breaks outdoors and have a brisk, short walk. You’ll also improve your concentration and mood.

  10. Dance or do aerobics at home. No one is watching, anyway. If you like, include the little ones and turn it into a game.

  11. Practice stretching or light yoga moves while talking on the phone, listening to the news, or while dinner is cooking.

  12. Find the high-energy items on your to-do list and tackle these when you need physical activity. Think about washing the car, digging the garden, mowing the lawn, or reorganizing a closet.

  13. Get up 15 to 30 minutes earlier than the rest of the family and use this time for a run, a walk, or some stretching and yoga.”

**Read more here: http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=43497

Exercises to help heal Plantar Fasciitis

“With the start of the new year, fitness resolutions are on everyone’s mind. Couch potatoes and exercise enthusiasts have started new physical activities and routines, runners have upped their mileage and weekend warriors are working hard to advance quickly in their chosen sport or activity-all trying to achieve the goal of leading a healthier lifestyle.

Advancing too quickly in physical activity can lead to an increase in heel pain-commonly known as Plantar Fasciitis. Faulty foot mechanics or improper shoes can also contribute to this condition. Other possible causes include: obesity, age, family tendency, and disease (arthritis and diabetes).

The Plantar Fascia is a shock absorbing tissue that expands when you walk, run, or exercise. Continuous tension on the fascia can cause irritation or inflammation. The pain associated with Plantar Fasciitis is generally located on the bottom of the heel. The first steps out of bed in the morning are often the most painful.
Irritation of the Plantar Fascia is treated with rest, ice, stretching and strengthening, correction of faulty footwear, and proper foot mechanics. Several stretches/strengthening exercises that have helped our clients get “back on their feet” are: The Plantar Fascia Stretch-standing with the ball of foot on stair, reach for the bottom step with heel until a stretch is felt through the arch of the foot. Hold for 30 seconds. Repeat 3 times, 3 times per day.
Single Leg Toe Curling-With foot resting on a towel, slowly bunch towel up as you curl toes. Repeat 3-5 times, 2 times per day.
Lacrosse Ball Massage-while sitting in a chair, roll lacrosse ball under your foot to massage the painful area. Perform for 1 minute, 3 times per day.

Increasing activity levels can be done safely and strategically to avoid overuse injuries. Always check for proper footwear, consider cross training (alternate between running, walking, biking, and swimming) on your exercise days, rest, and diet all aid in injury prevention and rehabilitation. So get out there and get your HEALTHY FEET MOVING!”

Great Article! “The One Exercise That Just Might Change Your Running Forever” via the Huffington Post.

“What if all it took to improve your running immeasurably was a few minutes marching in place?

In a 2011 New York Times Magazine feature, Christopher McDougall, author ofBorn to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Super Athletes and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen experimented with just that.

“I was leafing through the back of an out-of-print book, a collection of runners’ biographies called ‘The Five Kings of Distance,’ when I came across a three-page essay from 1908 titled ‘W. G. George’s Own Account From the 100-Up Exercise,’” he writes. “According to legend, this single drill turned a 16 year old with almost no running experience into the foremost racer of his day.”

Walter Goodall George’s earliest sporting interests were rugby and cycling, but he went on to win over 1,000 amateur prizes and races and set long-standing records as a professional runner. “He became unbeatable over the middle distances in an era before training became scientific,” the Oxford Dictionary Of National Biography writes, all while pioneering his own personal brand of “scientific” training, namely the 100-Up. In 1878, at age 19, he wrote a plan to break the then-world record for the mile — and proceeded to run nearly exactly his plan’s predicted time in 1886. In addition to his 100-Up essay cited by McDougall, he also published a short book on the exercise in 1913, according to the Oxford DNB.

George’s 100-Up routine is divided into two parts, the minor and the major. The minor involves standing with both feet about eight inches apart “and your arms cocked in running position,” McDougall writes. Then, raise one knee at a time to hip height, bringing it back down lightly to its original position. All that’s left after that is to repeat this movement 100 times. The major involves the same movement at a higher speed. McDougall quotes George: “The body must be balanced on the ball of the foot, the heels being clear of the ground and the head and body being tilted very slightly forward…. Now, spring from the toe, bringing the knee to the level of the hip…. Repeat with the other leg and continue raising and lowering the legs alternately. This action is exactly that of running.”

Sounds a little too simple, no?

Experienced runners will likely recognize these movements as the tried-and-true running drill commonly referred to as high knees, a simple way to up strength and endurance of the hip flexor and quad, according to New York Road Runners (NYRR). Straightforward as it looks, high knees –and other running drills — canhelp you become a better runner, says NYRR coach John Honerkamp. The 100-Up is essentially exaggerated running form, and performing 100 repetitions can help build muscle memory during a similar state of fatigue that a runner might experience at the end of a tough workout or a grueling race, he says.

But it’s the focus on form that’s most important. “You’re reinforcing poor form if you’re doing it improperly,” says Honerkamp. “Once you stop doing it correctly, you shouldn’t do it at all.” That means concentrating not just on returning each foot to its starting point, but paying attention to arm swing, keeping the core stable and landing close to your center of gravity on the balls of your feet every single time, he says. For most 100-Up beginners, 100 reps is a long-term goal. Aim to start with maybe 20 repetitions instead — or however many you can complete with perfect form.

Don’t expect to see immediate results, either, Honerkamp warns. Running on your toes, typically considered more efficient because you’re spending less time on the ground, may be the end goal, but heel strikers need to ease into adaptations. “I worry about people trying to drastically change,” says Honerkamp. “It’s something to work on and think about, but don’t over-think or overcorrect,” he says.

Whether or not you devote yourself to the 100-Up for life or simply dabble in running form drills periodically, incorporating focus on form into a warmup or regular training routine is a good idea, says Honerkamp. “People skip [warmups] because they’re busy getting out of the door,” he says, “but five minutes probably will go a long way.”

 

Source: Klein, S. (2014, June 4). The One Exercise That Just Might Change Your Running Forever. . Retrieved June 20, 2014, from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/06/04/100-up-running_n_5406664.html