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GET FIT FOR SPRING

3/20/15

After the cold, the snow, the bitter wind and the accompanying cabin fever that is part of a Chicago winter, we are all impatiently waiting for Spring; eager to begin the athletic activities that we missed during the long winter months

In our clinics, as soon as Spring breaks, we begin to see the weekend warriors coming for treatment of stress fractures, sprained ankles, plantar fasciitis, tendonitis and a host of other maladies that could have been easily avoided with a little moderation of the physical activities. Remember, walk before you run; stretch those muscles, tendons and joints that have been inactive during the winter months. Take it easy, don’t be in a hurry.

Our Clinic Administrator, Susana Castro, is an avid Crossfitter. She is in great shape and hits the gym five times a week for a vigorous workout. Take a look at the video clip below and see her do pull ups and dead lift 200lbs.

Susie’s Video Clip

Most of us, however, are not in the great physical shape that Susie is in, so, we have to start out SLOWLY. In other words, don’t try to run a marathon the first time that we have a weekend with great weather.

We can all do exercises!  You do not have to do rigorous Cross Training exercises, pushups, pull ups, lift hundreds of pounds or run a marathon to get in shape. All you have to do is to simply start moving, bending, twisting, even dancing around the house and within a few weeks you will be surprised how good you will feel.

In a nutshell, that is the secret of getting fit; take it easy, start slowly, in time as you start getting in shape, you can make your exercise routines more vigorous and your body will look forward to the exercises.

When I was in medical school, one of my orthopedic professors would always tell the class, “Mobility is life.” You can put a cast on a healthy individual and after a few weeks, when the cast is removed the muscles will be atrophied and the joints stiff as a result of the inactivity. That is just what happens to our body, particularly during the winter months when it is easy to become a couch potato.

Some years ago I attended a yoga class and the thing that impressed me the most was that our instructor would demonstrate a yoga exercise and then would turn to the class and with a reassuring smile say, “Only do what you can and what you feel comfortable doing.” The students would then do the yoga exercise; whether it was bending or stretching. To their amazement, the students found that after a while their muscles and joints would become pliable and loose and they then could stretch and bend further than they ever thought possible. To this day I am still doing yoga exercises and enjoying them.

Below is a short video of Susie demonstrating some very simple exercises to get you started and ready for that beautiful Chicago Spring Time that awaits us.

Susie’s Exercise Video