Friday, November 21, 2014

Dont Just talk About It, Do It!

Whether its information you are seeking about your knee or hip rehabilitation or, improving your physical fitness, there are probably a million websites out there that seem to say the same thing. Fitness is fitness, rehabilitation is rehabilitation.

And no one has the magic formula or,exercise program that will get you results any faster. I also know there is so many different variations on how to rehabilitate a surgical knee or how to build more muscle that you will find that the info is mind boggling.

Everyone will respond to rehab or fitness programs differently. Just like all of  us respond differently to certain medications or supplements on the market. The same goes for physical exercise programs.

One of the big factors in you having success in your physical rehabilitation or, physical fitness program will be your desire and commitment to improve and overcome the injury or surgical procedure and, the way it is presented and the communication skills of the physical therapist and /or personal trainer.

The bottom line is,find the combination of factors that works for you and, the instructor that matches not only your personality but,one that shows they have a keen desire to elevate you to a whole new way of life. Bringing you back from surgery or a medical scare better then you ever have been.

The next big step and the most important will be your commitment to take the information and instruction and apply it. If you do not have the will to fight and improve your life or, you are doing your fitness or rehabilitation program for someone else then you will more then likely fall flat on your face.

I see this everyday in home health physical therapy. Someone has fallen or become weak, cant walk safely for instance, a wife, husband etc.... has asked the doctor for a physical therapy to have someone work with them to improve their ability to transfer, ambulate or walk and strengthen themselves.

Unless that patient or individual in any under taking is internally motivated to improve their quality of life or physical appearance then it becomes a waste of time and the insurance companies money!

If youare going to do something about your health, your physical appearance or, improve your quality of life, then get your head into it and make the commitment to work hard and do whatever it takes to be disciplined enough to be a winner!

If not , then its highly recommended to save your time and your instructors time for someone else that has made that promise to themselves that enough is enough!

Richard Haynes PTA, CPT
Total Joint Fitness LLC

" Where Fitness and Rehabilitation Never Ends"

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Your Health, a Good Defense Is a Good Offense

When it comes to health prevention or most things in life that need to be addressed for the best possible outcome, the best defense is a good offense. Its a saying kicked around in the military.

How many of us sit around and try to avoid things in life that we feel will harm our health? Instead of being on the defense all the time, I propose to you today to be assertive and go out and participate in physical fitness activities and get a taste of good, solid competition with others.

Sure, we have to watch the foods we eat, stay away from harmful substances like excessive alcohol intake that will rob you of your vitality and destroy our minds, however, we need to instill and aggressive exercise program and remain disciplined and full- filling  our obligation to ourselves to get and stay in the best possible physical and mental conditioning as possible.

Aggressive exercises are not meaning exercise that will harm you, all of us need to know and understand our physical limitations before embarking on physical exercises if we have not been active in a while. What I mean is something more then just daily walks with the dog around the block.

Instead of looking for cures or some magic pill that the pharmaceutical companies or your doctors are happy to prescribe you, many times the answer  to our physical ailments lie within  us.

Its called getting off the sofa or recliner and get moving. To age and allow ourselves to get soft physically is about the worst thing you can do to yourself. Getting soft physically also generally means you are getting soft mentally as well.

Complacency and a lack of growth  is the number one cause of physical ailments and depression in the elderly in my opinion. Again that's mine only. To stop growing and feel, " I just want to take it easy now" is giving up on life!

To stay happy and fulfilled as we age we not only need to do some soul searching and find out what we would like to accomplish next in life but, also to get serious about our physical and mental conditioning and stay as active as possible.

Again, any exercise program you undertake needs to have a cardiovascular, strength training and, a stretching component in it. I have mentioned this in other previous posts as well.

Each day before you start getting involved in your daily routines , start with 45-60 minutes of exercise five to six times a week.

It not only will help you physically and help in reducing medical costs but, improve your mental outlook on life as well.

And part of your new health commitment is staying away from negative and toxic people. There are plenty of them to go around these days, and you should not have the time to indulge either, in the problems in the world.

Don't wait for physical ailments to come to you, you go and confront them and, work on knocking down obstacles today that can prevent you from living a happier more fulfilled life.

Richard Haynes PTA, CPT
Total Joint Fitness LLC

" Where Fitness and Rehabilitation Never Ends"

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Exercise Your Basic And Strength Building Movements First

I make it a habit and its a personal way of life to workout at the gym each morning five days a week. So needless to say I have seen a lot of things over the years that make you wonder why many people fail at achieving their strength and overall fitness goals.

There are many reasons in fact too numerous to mention in one blog posting however, one big reason I find that many older adults show little change in both their strength and physical appearance is because they have gotten away from the basics when it comes to weight training.

Trying to follow the latest trends in fitness can be mind boggling today. What worked 50 years ago, will work today when it comes to getting your stronger and more fit as we age.

Following advice from everyone you meet at the gym will only lead to further confusion. There will always be pros and cons to every movement along with those who, are contrarions even with the most basic movements and their effectiveness.

When your time is limited when it comes to your fitness schedule, you should be looking at the basic movements that will not only build more strength but also, help in areas like improving bone density, lowering cholesterol and, improving your bodies metabolism for starters.

Those basic movements being a rowing  movement for your back, a full or modified squat movement for your legs and gluteals and, a pressing movement for your chest and shoulders. Now these exercises are even more stimulating to your body when done with free weight however, as we age including myself, we are possibly dealing with orthopedic issues and some machines are better to use then free weights to help avoid further injury or exacerbation.

The basic exercises I talk about that you should do before leaving the gym especially if you work out only three days a week are:

Seated Back Rows: This is a good all around movement that will help build a strong back, help with your arm development and improve your posture through stronger muscle and spinal support. Keeping your repetition ranges between 12-20 repetitions will help with not only the strengthening component but, also improve your muscular endurance in the back which can help prevent back pain.

Bench Presses: Whether seated or lying supine on a bench, both are good for the pectoral muscles or chest but also, your shoulders and triceps. This is an exercises that will help in building upper extremity strength as well

Squats or Partial Mini-Squats: These can be done in several different ways as well. This exercise will not only keep your legs, hips and low back strong but, also speed up your bodies metabolism to help with your weight loss efforts and, with high repetitions is a great cardiovascular workout.

Take your heart rate the next time you knock out a set of 20 squats and see what I mean.

With just these three exercises added to your workout plan, you will notice an increase in strength and overall muscular endurance in time with a strong commitment. Of course as you get stronger and more seasoned with strength training, you can free lance a little and try other movements.

But for beginners, simplicity is the key and using these three solid compound movements will get you results that you are looking for to build a good solid strength and fitness foundation for years to come!

Richard Haynes PTA, CPT
Total Joint Fitness LLC

" Where Fitness and Rehabilitation Never Ends"

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Your Physical and Mental Health is Your Responsibility

Your physical and mental health is your responsibility. How many people do you know that leave both their physical and mental health to chance? I know quite a few my self, how you ask?

By the people we associate with for starters, how many of us know someone that all they have to talk about is how bad their health is? To be honest its boring. And to be even more honest, no one really cares about your health but two people, one is your doctor, the second one is the local mortician.

How many times have you heard me talk about understanding that your body is controlled by your mind. Not the other way around. By associating with people that complain about their health all day and how terrible it is just brings the rest of us down.

Learn to suffer in silence! Understand worrying will do nothing for them or you yourself, it wont change a thing. If your worried about your health, then go see a competent doctor. Yes I said competent. Some as you know are better then others and willing to take the time to listen. Find someone that is willing to find an answer to your health  problems if you have any at all.

Your mental health is guided and determined by your thoughts and what you take in on a daily basis.
Watching hours of negative programming on the TV surely will not take you the promise land of good health and vitality.

Living your life and your daily decisions made by what you see on TV is not the way to go. In my estimation, other then competitive sporting events which I enjoy there isn't much else on.  But that's my opinion and everybody has one right?

Remember, the body is a product of your mind. Think negative and angry thoughts all day and you reap the harvest of a toxic mind and body.  Sure there is nothing wrong with being realistic in life but make sure you keep everything in perspective. The world will not end tomorrow.

You have your physical gym and, you should be attending  a mental gym as well. Your mental gym is where you will take a few minutes of your day in complete silence and visualize and see the type of body you want and, the type of health you desire. This can be done first thing in the morning,

All of your life including your health starts in the mind. You have more control over your physical destiny then you think.

We as individuals just have to stop buying into the " sky is falling mentality in life, watch who we associate with and, be more pro-active in all facets of your life including our health.

Richard Haynes PTA, CPT
Total Joint Fitness LLC

" Where Fitness and Rehabilitation Never Ends"

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Life is Too Short To Be Weak And Broken Down After Chronic Pain

Many of you that find this blog are readers looking for knee and hip replacement information regarding tips on pain management, and helping you with your physical rehabilitation. After all, joint replacement today is a common surgery that is performed all over the world as society ages at an alarming rate.

Doctors and the pharmaceutical companies are making a nice payday from this surgery alone. Though some doctors may debate the reimbursement issue, most are living a pretty good life for their hard work and prior schooling.

The drug companies well, I don't need to say anymore do I?

After joint replacement surgery many of you have you own expectations regarding how you want to rebound. Many I find just want to get back to their prior level of function, others after listening to their surgeon and a handful of helpful but, complacent neighbors,  may feel they will now be a mere shell of what they once were physically because of pre -conceived restrictions on the artificial prosthesis.

Throw those thoughts out the window. After you have gone through months and most of you years of chronic pain, you have softened up a bit physically as your ability to participate in physical activities was limited.

I like to see my patients or clients after they are released from their doctors care to have higher expectations of them selves now both mentally and physically. Of course not all my patients may fit this mold but, once you have had the chronic pain of osteoarthritis resolved, its time to kick into gear your life, and become better physically through a concentrated and committed exercise program that will build a stronger body and a stronger mentality by developing a tougher mindset.

Making it a point to locate a fitness professional in your area that can help you get started and save you a lot of wasted time ,frustration or, further injury is the smart thing to do if, you have no prior strength training experience for instance.

Reading an absorbing good books on developing mental toughness which you can find on Amazon for instance, will help develop your mind along with your body and help those of us in the 50+ crowd to prepare for the second half of life.

Life is too short now to get kicked around due to poor health and a negative, passive attitude. If you do not expect and work on developing yourself to a higher level both physically and mentally life will wear you down.

Poor health and a mind that does not expand and grow as we age leaves you at the mercy of the US health care system which will break you in two financially.

Now is the time after getting the pain issued resolved to turn up the thermostat in life and expect more from yourself. Mediocrity should be for someone else,not you. The stronger you become now mentally and physically, the more power and confidence you will carry with you in life.

Richard Haynes PTA, CPT
Total Joint Fitness LLC

" Where Fitness and Rehabilitation Never Ends"

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Cross Fit For Seniors In Home Health Physical Therapy

Cross fit seems to be quite the rage these days and it like most things in life has it pros and cons along with proponents and detractors. Needless to say, its not for everyone. In fact, good sound judgement has to be used when cross fitting due to the numerous injuries that can be obtained from poor technique and overuse.

Its like any other exercise program in that lack of common sense when implementing these programs and lack of necessary rest and recovery programs can be harmful to the body.

I use a milder form of cross fit in some of my home health exercise programs with patients only after I have initially made a complete assessment of what they can and cannot do, medical diagnosis, previous injuries, cognitive skills etc.....

I initially will get them started on a general strengthening and conditioning program that is quite common in physical therapy circles then, as I progress with the patient and get a better idea of their physical skills and where they may be deficient, I will slowly begin to implement my own form of cross fit exercises that will help them in their every day activities.

As a physical therapist going into someones home and mindlessly each session, going through the same exercises each visit for instance, leads to eventual patient non-compliance and downright boredom.

The body tends to stop progressing and the mentally they are no longer stimulating to the patient.Though there are multiple ways to increase intensity of a home exercise program, throwing in a modified cross fit workout will challenge the patient and shake things up a bit.

Having my patients for instance start with partial mini-squats, followed with picking a weight off the floor, then follow with walking a prescribed distance and timing them may be just one set of exercises they can do.

I may use modified counter-top push-ups followed with thera band back rows and finish with a set of heel raises is another combination as one set. There are multiple combinations any therapist can use in the home that helps to not only helps a patient or client function each day in the home or community but, breaks up the boredom that can set in if changes and progression are not made.

Of course understanding your patient and their abilities are critical and with physical therapy professionals, that goes without saying. However, being pro-active as a therapist and looking for ways to change and stimulate your patients mind and body are important to get the most out of them and keep them functioning is something we should all be striving to do.

Richard Haynes PTA, CPT
Total Joint Fitness LLC

" Where Fitness And Rehabilitation Never Ends"

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Sleep, Hydration and Nutrition, Crucial Components For Progress

During my Home visits each week working with geriatric patients for general strengthening and conditioning along with standing balance and fall precautions in general, one topic that I make sure I cover with each one of my patients along with the caregivers if present is the importance of the patients, sleep patterns, hydration levels and, their nutrition.

Sometimes I get a look of surprise or bewilderment as to why I might be asking questions regarding this issue?

I will cover these topics after my first session and after having discussed the home exercise program and how they are to follow it for optimal results. After all , I want to find out more about their lifestyle habits.

For some the idea of getting enough sleep, drinking plenty of fresh water and, eating a nutritious meal is no surprise when it comes to their overall health and how these three components are involved in their overall strengthening progress.

For others, it appears they have never given it a thought or, that it may pertain to someone else for instance.

We all will get patients or clients in the world of Physical Therapy or Personal Training that expect instance results and do not understand the tie-in that sleep, hydration levels and nutrition play in trying to obtain progress and improvement. Oh they have heard of it or, understand that it makes sense but, not many that come to us for treatment or to lose weight for instance  follow the advice.

Sure in Physical Therapy, I  work with patients that generally have several comorbidities   going on at once and, one may affect the other, not to say the medications that are involved as well when it comes to working and improving standing balance for instance.

But to have a patient or client come to me and tell me for instance that they are frustrated with their results and only to find out after further questioning that they may be sleeping 3-4 hours a night, have to be bribed and practically held down to drink some water or, they are eating a cracker and cup of tea for breakfast is not a recipe for getting productive results.

Everyone's body is different, that we know and, some of us operate on less sleep then others but, unless your  are currently coaching in the NFL, getting three to four hours a sleep a  night will not allow the body to perform at its optimal best. With a lack of proper water intake or, not eating quality high protein meals as we age, you cannot expect to get stronger.

If you want to start getting stronger or are experiencing that natural decline in muscle mass and leg strength as you age, then you first have to look at the pre-requisites of what constitutes building a sound body with a sound mind as we age.

And it has to start by following the basics of getting proper sleep, hydration and nutrition. Your body is a machine and it needs the proper fuel to work with to run and operate properly. For instance I sleep between 7-9 hours a night, probably drink well over a gallon of water a day and, consume between 175 and 200 grams of protein a day.

Some older patients will not do that of course and a lot will depend on their overall health etc... that is why I instruct them to talk with their doctor regarding their diet, protein intakes etc....

Life does not get easier as we age, and you have to step up your discipline levels in these three areas if you expect to have a fighting chance in keeping your strength, health and independence later in life.

Richard Haynes PTA, CPT
Total Joint Fitness LLC

" Where Fitness and Rehabilitation Never Ends"

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Take Back Possession Of Your Own Body

Taking back possession of our own body in today's world is not as easy as it sounds. Unless you are grounded in staunch self  discipline and know how to turn off the internal chatter that plagues many of us, you will continue to give in to the numerous temptations that are all around us.

Its easy to make the decision early in the morning that I am not going to get out of bed and go to the gym for instance. Its easy to say think that tomorrows a better day when in fact tomorrow is not a better day in fact, who said you even have tomorrow?

As we get older are days get numbered and we have to make the most out of each one. Putting your exercise program off another day or procrastinating about when you are going to clean up your food intake and lose a few pounds is a dead end street!

To take back possession of both your mind and body, you need to start with and understand that no one will care about you until you care for yourself. When you come down with some type of chronic  disease or other medical problems, sure your friends say one thing and are concerned but the bottom line is it does not affect them, its affect only you.

Decide today, right now that you are going to be the driver of your bus in life, not the TV, not your neighbors and definitely  not your doctor who makes his income on the fact that you will not take personal responsibility  of your own health and, get started on a hardcore massive physical and mental transformation to clean up your life.

You want to be sure you do not start one more day from here on out without first flooding your mind in  the morning with positive and empowering thoughts that you are in control and that you have and will generate all the strength and power to conquer whatever the day throws at you.

Be sure also that you start your day with some sort of physical activity five to six day a week. Power walking, jogging, or speed biking  along with resistance training are ideal for the older adult to begin to get in shape and control his or her own physical destiny for once.

Now your doctor is banking on the fact that you do not have what it takes to take control over your health. Instead  he or she figures you will continue to be a steady stream of income for multiple doctors as many people get caught up in the loop of spending their days going to doctor appointments.

If that's not for you, then take charge of your own health through exercise, eating cleaner, and staying leaner and more muscular. And yes, that can be done at any age. If you are from the old school that thinks " I am too old " or have doubts about what  I am saying then this blog will not be for you.

Clearing your mind of doubt and procrastination and, filling your mind with thoughts of power and strength and mentally rehearsing what you need to do on each day before getting out of bed will give you the strength you need to over come obstacles in life.

Why pay the health field a steady income which I  work in by the way, because of lazy, procrastinating thoughts and habits when you can be paying yourself a nice healthy dividend with a more proactive approach to your health.

The future of your health lies in your hands!

Richard Haynes PTA, CPT
Total Joint Fitness LLC

" Where Fitness And Rehabilitation Never Ends"