Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Fitness FAQ



My progress after a shoulder replacement seems to be going too slow. What would you recommend?”

If you are still under the care of a physician or physical therapist my recommendation is to do what they tell you at the speed they tell you. If you think it should be improving faster discuss it with them.

I am not a physical therapist (and I don’t even play one on TV). If I were your trainer I would  get involved only after your release and even then I’d prefer to talk to the therapist first.

A trainer would normally only get involved to help you continue your progress and get, in this case, your affected shoulder up to strength with your unaffected shoulder. And to help get your overall fitness back up to previous levels (or better) after your long layoff.

“The bar hurts my shoulders where it lays across my back, should I use a pad?

Use a pad made for that purpose or a rolled up towel for now but only temporarily. Build up your traps (trapezoid muscle) by doing dumbbell and barbell shrugs.

Shrugs-Holding a dumbbell in each hand at your sides or a barbell in front of you against you thighs, shrug your shoulders. Trying to touch your ears with your shoulders (both at the same time-never one at a time). Do them slowly with a smooth motion (up and down) with no jerking motions. Hold the shrug at the top of a two count and on the final set hold for a ten count.Keep your head straight ahead- not up or down. Don’t rotate or roll your shoulders. Use progression (increasing the weight as you can but the traps usually respond best to medium to higher reps (8-15). You’ll soon get a nice little padded shelf across your shoulders to rest the bar on!

How do I tell if my workout has stopped working?

If you have stopped making progress in strength or muscle gain but are still working out with the same intensity it may be time to change your workout. But be sure the gains haven’t stopped just because you’ve gotten bored with your old workout and have started slacking off on the intensity. Make sure the intensity is still there before giving up on a program.

If you were somewhat sore 24 to 48 hours after working out a particular body part (delayed onset muscle soreness-DOMS for short) but you are no longer getting sore. It may be time to change up.
But note that the lack of soreness is not an indication, in and of itself, that you aren’t making progress. DOMS will become less and less of a valid indicator after you’ve been at lifting for a while. Even after DOMS has diminished from where it used to be you should still feel a “fullness” or “tightness” in a muscle or muscle group 24 to 48 hours after working that muscle or group (the “Pump”). If you feel nothing it’s probably time to replace that workout or make major changes in it.

 Should I use gloves when I workout?

Send your questions or comments to alphaedgefitness@gmail.com

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