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"

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Dynamic Bodies, Dynamic Minds

Dynamic bodies and dynamic minds, that is something we all should be striving for as the sand in the hour glass regarding our lives, continues to decrease. This is reality so lets face it.

Keeping yourself physically and mentally fit is not a once or twice a week thing its an all the time thing we should be working at if, we want to live the quality of life that we all desire.

For some of us staying physically active is a no brainier. We all have heard by now the importance of staying active to help maintain our independence later in life. Staying active though means many things to many people.

A walk around the block once a day though better then nothing, will not cut it when it comes to staying strong and physically fit.  Its about time for many of you to increase your workload and push your bodies further then you have before.

A physical fitness program no matter what your age should include  weight training, cardio and stretching components.

What about staying strong mentally and having an open and dynamic thinking mind? What is the purpose of shutting down your belief system as you age and become dormant when it comes to learning new information and possibly considering that the things we thought were true or gospel, may actually be wrong?

Many older adults seem to shut down their learning curve as we age because it  takes hard work to be mentally disciplined to learn a new skill both mentally and physically.

To live a happy and healthier life , we all need to challenge ourselves to grow daily.

Currently we are living in a country that could accomplish anything it put its mind too, we were a can do country now, we are a can't do country, in other words, resting on our laurels and what we once were. The world has begun to pass us by. Do not fall victim of the same negativity that seems to guide the country. Do not rest on your previous accomplishments or feel you cannot do something any longer, that's a losers mentality and as we age life can become a battle if not prepared.

Be a person that would rather be in motion both physically and mentally rather then someone that feels their best is behind them and has decided to stop and, live a slow death.

Feed your body with progressive physical activity and feed your mind with good motivating material that will spur you on to taking responsibility, for your life by living a clean, healthy life.

Be in the one percent club that has a disciplined mind and body exercise routine daily.

There is no excuse for giving up, live your life to the fullest by working daily both your mind and body to get the health you want and freedom to live like you want to live.

Richard Haynes PTA, CPT
Total Joint Fitness LLC

" Where Fitness and Rehabilitation Never Ends"

Sunday, September 14, 2014

See Your Fitness And Rehabilitation Success First In Your Mind

How many of us go through life without giving a thought to how we should prepare our minds first before we start the day? How about, going through your physical rehabilitation or, your fitness routines to lose weight and get stronger after surgery or a major illness without any thought just how important our thoughts are in determining our success?

I am a big believer in stressing the importance the role your mind plays in your success, when I am working with either a patient or client in the fitness realm in obtaining successful results.

Of course my physical therapy work involves many geriatric patients that either disregard this fact or, they do not have the cognitive skills any longer to absorb quite frankly what your talking about.

Instead of mindlessly going through exercises during rehabilitation or strength training during your fitness routine, your personal trainer or physical therapist should be stressing the importance of mentally preparing yourself first as well.

I for instance when going to the gym in the morning, I visualize my routine many times over before ever setting foot in the gym.

If you are rehabilitating a knee after knee replacement surgery or, other medical condition , you should have run mentally in your mind  the exercise program first and seen yourself recovering and seeing  what you will look and feel like when your recovery is complete.

If your personal trainer for instance is not spending time preparing you mentally for what you both are trying to accomplish then, you are working at 50% of your maximum! Your mind is the most powerful force you have and, that may have ever been created in this universe, why in the world do most of us not use it?

 We did not come into this world with a manual on how to use our minds and, no doubt we in 2014 have just scratched the surface in what it can do.

If you are training to improve and get into the best physical shape you have been in or, recovering from surgery, then learn to get into the habit of spending some quiet time before starting and, see yourself being successful and, see how you want to look and feel.

Leaving the equation out of using your mind to help you get to where you want to be in life is not arming yourself to your full capacity.

See yourself being successful and feeling and looking good first in your mind will make the body follow.

Remember what  I have said in previous posts, the body follows the mind, not the other way around.

Learn to look and feel your very best.

Richard Haynes PTA, CPT
Total Joint Fitness LLC

" Where Fitness and Rehabilitation Never Ends"

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

My Sunday Morning Ritual

I recently started a new Sunday morning ritual that gets me started not only feeling energized physically but, energized mentally as well.

I am an advocate of daily exercise not only for the general public of course but, I really emphasize exercise and increasing both our mental and physical fitness to all of you like myself that have undergone a total knee, hip, or shoulder replacement.

In fact, anyone that has undergone a previous medical or orthopedic surgery should be after getting cleared by your surgeon, taking your fitness levels to a new high or benchmark in other words.

I  started as a new challenge to myself, to walk at a good brisk pace for one hour on Sunday mornings. I like to do this between the hours of 6-7:00 am before breakfast.

During that walk, I also bring my  I pod with me and listen to an audio books that helps give me the mental energy to forge ahead and continue to grow and challenge myself both mentally and physically.

Right now I have been listening to " As You Think " by James Allen. I allow it to continue to play and replay throughout that hour walk.

Walking early in the am after taking in a protein drink and hydrating myself with water, allows me to get in an additional cardio session and keeps my legs strong and helps with the muscular endurance needed to make it through each day.

I always recommend to my physical therapy patients that after you get discharged from your rehabilitation program,  to get involved in a daily exercise routine to keep the muscles around your new joint replacement strong and active and this, will  allow you to get many years out of the new prosthesis.

Also, getting started on a walking or biking program before breakfast will also help in reducing those unwanted pounds you may have picked up prior to surgery. And remember now that you either have a new knee or hip replacement, staying leaner and stronger is where you want to be if you expect to get back into some form of a functional lifestyle.

So challenge yourself to step your fitness and weight loss program and set up a structured exercise program of walking or biking as just one part of an overall program to become the best physically and mentally that you can become after joint replacement surgery.

Richard Haynes PTA, CPT
Total Joint Fitness LLC

" Where Fitness and Rehabilitation Never Ends"

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Aging Is a Battlefield, Are You Ready?

Getting older is something we all have to face in life and along with the aging process comes multiple aches and pains that seem to come out of no where. I have faced my share of these mysterious bouts of pain and stiffness myself and, I work hard at keeping my self in good physical condition.

Many of you reading this post I am sure have gone through the same thing. We know that are bodies cannot last forever and what tends to go first with the ageing process is orthopedic problems like arthritic knees, hips, shoulders, spine and back pain and the list goes on and on.

We as older adults have to understand that we have to strengthen not only only are physical bodies but also are mental outlook. Developing mental toughness as we age is a prerequisite to helping survive some of the inconsistency of aging.

The military prepares its soldiers for battle and you as an individual will have a battle on your hands  with orthopedic breakdowns and a testing of your resolve. Yes it comes down to having a positive can do and will do attitude.

Two ways To prepare yourself is to work on body strengthening with resistance training, cardiovascular training and stretching. Of course a proper food selection and moderation goes without saying, correct?

The second phase of your preparation is to learn how to deal mentally with varying degrees of pain and overall discomfort. This comes under the title of developing mental toughness.

Your body is run and operated by your mind. Everything your body does from getting out of bed in the morning to, digesting your last meal is run and operated by your brain. Remember your body will go wherever your mind takes it.

You dwell on pain and suffering as we age, you get more pain and suffering. You will receive what your mind thinks about constantly. Remember, your body will go where your mind takes it. It is not the other way around. Your mind is in charge!.

For instance to prepare myself for those " golden years" if  I am not preparing my next workout at the gym and reading on ways to improve my body and staying fit, I am reading and studying ways to build and develop mental toughness.

If you are going through physical rehabilitation right now you know then what  I mean by getting tough both physically and mentally to endure the pain with a knee , hip, or shoulder replacement.

If you are battling some sort of chronic illness, everyday can be challenge if your not taking your medication as prescribed, eating right and staying disciplined to get some type of exercise completed to give you a fighting chance to succeed will play a vital role too.

Doing your part both physically and mentally by preparing to confront the future with optimism and a can do and will do attitude will be all up to you. Are you getting ready for the challenge?

Richard Haynes PTA, CPT
Total Joint Fitness LLC

" Where Fitness and Rehabilitation Never Ends" 

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Pain Is Temporary, Regret Is Forever

" Pain is temporary , regret is forever" what a powerful statement when it comes to your physical rehabilitation or physical fitness program. In fact, every physical therapy clinic or gym should have these words of wisdom put up in plain site for all those who walk in.

When it comes down to your rehabilitation after joint replacement surgery, Sure we know its painful and anyone that tells you it is not is not being realistic. Who in the world told you it wouldn't be painful anyway?

There comes a price you as the patient have to pay when it comes to physical rehabilitation as far as doing your exercises as instructed by the physical therapist along with,paying the price now to be sure you are consistent not only in the physical rehabilitation program now but, long after the surgery is done as well.

If you want long lasting results with your knee, hip, or shoulder mobility and strength and, I think everyone does then, you have to go through some pain and discomfort now or forever live with the physical limitations that persist after.

How many times have you heard a neighbor or friend tell you that they " knew someone that had knee replacement surgery but did not do their exercises"?

How many times have you heard or knew someone that had a gym membership but " did not go"?

You will not get results unless you pay a physical and mental price. The physical price is you will have to learn to deal with the pain after joint replacement surgery as it is only temporarily or otherwise known as surgical pain.

How many people say they want to lose weight or get stronger but do not go through the mental and physical discomfort of consistent exercise?

 The mental price is having the discipline or mental toughness to do what you know has to be done to have a successful recovery or to lose that extra 25 pounds you want to get off before surgery.

By not forging ahead and attacking your physical rehabilitation or fitness goals now and learning to be able to withstand some pain and overall discomfort now will come back to haunt you the rest of your life.

Work hard now, train with a vengeance now and, enjoy the fruits of your labor the rest of your life by having a functional and mobile lifestyle.

Richard Haynes PTA, CPT
Total Joint Fitness LLC

" Where Fitness and Rehabilitation Never Ends"