Kick-Off to 2012

We kicked off 2012 . . .

. . . with amazing goals in mind . . . you are all stretching yourselves and accomplishing more and more, more than you ever imagined. Our rising tide is your positive energy and hard-work and it’s lifting all of us! The first major goal already in 2012 is a push-up challenge. I was made aware of it through another fitness friend; it’s a national movement to raise money for Chidren’s Cancer Research. However, it’s also a great experience for goal setting, pushing your limits, and removing self-doubt. The Push-Up Challenge is 5,000 in January. Some are doing 10,000. The math is 161 each day for 5,000 and 322 for 10,000. This Push-Up Challenge has inspired us to inspire others . . . our coworkers, children, partners, friends, and students. We have a daycare doing 161 different movements with the children each day . . . we have a school teacher inspiring her 6th grade students to move with her every day (they ask for it; they want to do it) . . . we have a business professional who challenged her coworkers in the office . . . we have moms and dads who have set up charts for their families. All I can say is that we’re out-of-control in control people!!

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Another challenge is going to end on Tuesday, January 24…It’s the 100 Day Challenge. However, as many Challengers have said, it’s not the end for them. The nutrition and movement knowledge acquired, plus the internal journies has given everyone the momentum to lean, look and like going forward with their healthy lifestyle. The day of celebration will take place on Tuesday, January 24 at 6pm at my house.

The first week at Boot Camp included “man-makers”, jump rope, overhead squats, and burpees (of course). It’s funny how much faster and harder everyone went when we benchmarked the moves 🙂 Thursday included 120 push-ups to help add to the January Challenge, football drills in honor of Lisa Schukei’s Giants, plyometric split lunges and squats, burpees with tuck jumps, lots ‘o air squats, and abducter work (which left us walking a little funny).

Concept2 Rower Raffle Winner

Thank you to all who purchased a Concept2 Rower raffle ticket to support the Boot Cancer Fitness Challenge where all proceeds are donated to the American Cancer Society. The winner is . . . go to www.bootcancer.org and check out the bottom of each page for the winner. Thank you to Concept2 and Greg Hammond for being such a large supporter in this event. It’s great to have a Vermont company on board!

Hip Strength

During our abductor workout, I mentioned that the hip muscles were vital to runners. They’re more important than you think.

How are they vital? First, did you know that hips are the most overlooked area when it comes to decreasing the potential for injury. Most back and hip problems occur because of improper mobility and stability and faulty utilization of the hips. Most people are locked down or unstable in their hips. If one of your hip capsules is locked down, it’s as if one of your thighbones is welded to your pelvis—imagine wearing a permanent cast on your hip. To get anything to move, you would have to use excessive motion in your knees and back to make up for your hip’s immobility. The lower and middle back share some common responsibilities with your hips, but they were meant to be secondary, not primary, initiators of movement.

We want to focus on becoming glute dominant instead of quad dominant. This is a key concept. Most move from their knee joints as opposed to their hip joints; we’re “quad dominant.” Their knees move first, stimulating the quadriceps muscles to fire at the onset of movement. This is a dangerous thing because the hub of your wheel is your pelvic area—not the quads. You want to absorb force through the more powerful center of your body toward your glutes, which will enable the limbs to work together to produce force. To try to absorb this much force in the quads alone is to invite ACL and other leg injuries, according to Mark Verstegen, the founder of Athletes’ Performance and Core Performance.

Hip Exercises

You’ll be pleased to know that if you’ve been a frequent boot camper, you’re in great shape with your hips. If you’re looking for more exercises, simply search the internet for adductor or abductor exercises and hip warm up exercises.

Hip Muscles

Now let’s learn about theses muscles and their functions.

Adductors

Four muscles contribute to hip-joint adduction: the adductor brevis, adductor longus, adductor magnus and gracilis. They are located on the inside of your thigh and allow you to pull your leg inward, toward the center of your body. They are active during the swing phase of the gait cycle, centering your foot before your heel strikes the ground, according to Susan Hall, author of “Basic Biomechanics.” The gracilis muscle also assists with knee flexion, and the other three with hip external rotation and flexion ranges of motion.

Gluteus Medius

The gluteus medius is one of three gluteal muscles, sometimes called the buttocks. The muscle attaches to the outer surface of the ilium — the uppermost part of the pelvis — on one end, and to the greater trochanter — the bony protrusion you can feel on the outside of the hip area — on the other. The gluteus medius is the major hip abductor, moving your leg sideways, away from the center of your body. It is active during the support phase of the gait cycle, as your forward-moving foot rolls from heel to toe on the ground, explains Hall. Parts of the muscle also contribute to external and internal rotation ranges of motion.

Gluteus Maximus

The gluteus maximus is the largest of the gluteal muscles, attaching to various bones of the pelvis on one end and to the femur, or thigh bone, and iliotibial band — a long strand of connective tissue spanning the outside of your thigh, from hip to knee — on the other. It is the main hip extensor and assists with hip external rotation and abduction ranges of motion. The gluteus maximus is particularly active when extending your hip against external resistance, such as while climbing stairs, cycling or performing squats, according to Hall.

Iliopsoas

The iliopsoas complex consists of two muscles: the iliacus and psoas major. These muscles are grouped together because they share an attachment on the lesser trochanter of the femur, opposite the greater trochanter. They are located in front of your hip joint and facilitate hip flexion ranges of motion, allowing you to raise your leg forward or pull your knee toward your chest. They are active when you kick a ball, while running or sprinting or when you drive your knee forward and upward during the swing phase of the gait cycle.

That’s all for now. See you this Monday and Thursday.

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One response to “Kick-Off to 2012

  1. Can really feel last night’s work out today. It’s gonna be a tough push-up day!

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