The Integrals – Rick Almand
Today, I want to explore 3 aspects of physical training that are often times overlooked. These components are vitally important if you want to optimize your fitness program and take care of your primary asset, your good health!
The 3 are: flexibility, balance and proper breathing techniques…the ‘Integrals’. Without them, your workouts will not deliver all the benefits you’re anticipating. To go into all the benefits provided would far exceed this column’s space, so let me cover just one of the advantages for each of the trio.
Stretch after each lift or each run. Stretching increases oxygen and nutrient deliver to the muscles and tendons as well as taking them out of tension. Both these factors shorten the recovery time, thus allowing your body to be better prepared for the next workout opportunity.
Stand on one foot for 30 seconds, then the other foot for 30 seconds. How many times do you touch down to reset your balance? When you stop having to touch down, up the challenge by rotating the arms for 30 seconds (wax on/wax off). The next step would be to fold a towel 2 or 3 times, stand on it with one foot, rotate your arms (again for 30 seconds), and work to where you don’t touch down even once. By training your body to stay erect on only one foot, you will be far more stable when you’re doing your day-to-day tasks standing on both feet.
Inhale through the nose. You will tend to breathe deeper, bringing more oxygen into the lower portion of the lungs where there are more oxygen exchange receptors (alveolis). This translates to more oxygen per liter of blood. Remember, your energy levels are directly related to the level of oxygen per liter of blood.
Take Care of Business
These are just a few of the many advantages the three ‘Integrals’ provide. By incorporating these fundamentals into your exercise program, you will go a long way toward helping stay the course and reaching your goals faster. My observations indicate these three are even more important for we baby boomers. Our group is generally more challenged because most of us have avoided physical activity for longer than we should. Stretching, breathing correctly and regaining a quality level of balance help us keep on track. No need to leave anything on the table at this point in our lives.
If you want to learn how best to incorporate these into your fitness program, contact Ultimate Best at: http://www.ultimatebest.net/index.html
Good Luck and Good Health!