|Kathryn Upper Body|
Monday, May 12, 2014
Friday, September 6, 2013
I just think it needs to be said: Bodies are amazing and people are amazing in all different shapes and sizes! Fitness isn't skinny, nor is it buff. It's well being in all its forms. Seeing what a body is capable of athletically is exciting to me in the same way that I'm amazed seeing my 18 month old grandson dance like he's an MTV star, never missing a beat and giving me all his newest moves. People are amazing!
I have met in life, a few too many people who objectify others; ie: treat them as objects they might gain something from, sizing them up, rather than seeing them as amazing individuals to share life's experiences with, learn from and bond with. And, of course, as a trainer, I meet a lot of confused people who have been scarred by others objectifying them and destroying their self confidence...leaving them feeling never quite good enough. I've personally battled others' demons thrust upon me to devalue me and I've overcome! You can too!
You're beautiful! -Inside and out! Now love your self and take care of your "machinery" so you can love others with all you've got! Love your jiggles and wiggles too! Love your curves and huggable parts! And if you don't have any of those, love what you do have! Enjoy the piece of art that you are! Embellish it if you so choose to! Appreciate all the other "art" around you!
Message me if you need some level headed fitness direction! This is my passion: To help others improve their lives!
Share this post please, to help me help others. Let me know if you would be interested in an online training program, utilizing videos. Your interest may drive my business in that direction!
Learn From Mistakes!
Keep Going Forward!
Feel Better Fit!
Thursday, August 8, 2013
Tuesday, July 23, 2013
Monday, June 18, 2012
If you want to eat when you should not be hungry, you may be masking thirst with hunger. Drink water first. Wait 15 minutes and see if that diminishes the desire to eat.
You have probably heard those narrators on the National Geographic specials say things like "Water is life." They may sound overly dramatic, but they are right.
Staying hydrated is not rocket science! It may be one of the easiest ways to improve your overall health!
We humans are more than 70% water. We begin to get dehydrated and our performance drops off with as little as a 2% water loss. What can cause a 2% water loss? It does not take much. It can happen to an athlete who is competing, to someone who is in bed with the flu or diarrhea, in very hot weather, or even to someone who just does not drink enough.
No water, no go....
What happens to your body when you’re dehydrated?
• Your brain will not work properly – you’ll be groggy, slow, and feel out of it.
• You will lose muscle tone.
• Your kidneys will not be able to function; toxins and wastes will back up in your body, making you feel generally crummy.
• You will have trouble regulating your body temperature; you may feel overheated, or you may feel chronically cold and unable to get warm.
• You will get constipated.
• Fats stored in your body won’t get used up or metabolized.
• You will think you are hungry all the time, and so you will be likely to eat more than you need to.
• Your skin will get dry, itchy, and saggy.
Most articles you read recommend 8 to 12 glasses of water a day for healthy individuals. If you’re thinking, "That’s A LOT of water," remember this refers to 8 oz glasses! Your 24 oz water bottle equals 3 of your servings. Here are some conditions that may require greatly increasing the amount of water you drink:
• You are exercising.
• The weather is warm.
• You are on a high fiber diet or taking a fiber supplement. (Fiber uses up lots of water.)
• You are trying to lose weight. Some people worry that if they drink too much water they’ll get bloated. This really is not true. Your body only stores as much water as it needs. The rest it dumps out unless you have a health problem that is causing fluid build-up.
• You are in a high altitude area, where the air tends to be drier and evaporation occurs faster.
• You are traveling, especially in airplanes where the same air is re-circulated over and over again, which also may make the air drier.
• You spend most of your time indoors, where there is little fresh air.
• You have an acute illness – like a cold or a bladder infection. Fevers, vomiting, diarrhea all cause you to lose or use up large amounts of water, which needs to be replaced.
Important Tips to remember:
• Drinks with caffeine can be counter productive. They cause you to lose water by increasing your urine output. So, if you use caffeinated drinks, increase your water intake as well. If your fluid intake is restricted to begin with, you may want to avoid entirely, or at least greatly limit, caffeinated beverages. Caffeine is found in coffee, tea, colas, and some other soft drinks.
• Sports drinks and juices do help you replace water, but they contain lots of calories. They are also expensive. If you are not a heavy-duty exerciser, sports drinks really are not necessary. They are no better than plain water. And, if you are watching your weight, they may have far more calories than you want!
• Finally, know that your thirst sensation runs quite a bit slower than your body’s need for water. By the time you realize that you are feeling thirsty, your body will already be suffering from drought. Most experts suggest that you drink before you get thirsty. If you’re exercising; even if you are just pushing a long distance, drink water before, during, and after.
It does take a little effort...
It might not be that easy to develop the habit of getting in 12 glasses of water a day! Here are some suggestions:
• Keep a water bottle with you. Or start the day with a gallon jug and empty it!
• Drink before meals, when you’re hungry, rather than afterwards, when you are already full.
• Try to do most of your drinking in the morning and early afternoon so there is time for all that water to be eliminated before bedtime.
Saturday, June 9, 2012
Beautiful, PERFECT, peaceful moment on my porch swing, getting great messages from Silvana abut how well they are doing; I have this huge...."aaahhhh...it's finished" feeling. All is well, at last! What a year!
With all three of my married children giving me my first three grandsons, there has been tons of excitement, planning, parties, pregnant ailments...etc. But as silently as I could, I've f...ought many concerns and worries. I guess that's one of Grandma's jobs.
I won't list all the mini crises and well founded concerns, we all experienced as a family building a new generation. Suffice it to say, "It is well with my soul!" I have three beautiful mommies and grandsons. three proud, responsible, loving daddies to care for them and an unspeakable joy pouring out of my heart for how beautifully we are all blessed!
A brand new journey has started now and I can definitely say, these three little wonders, Saul, Abel and Silas have cemented together our family bonds in amazing new ways! I'm filled with a new excitement now at the crazy, fun filled days ahead for my ever growing MASSIVE family! I think we have successfully given sustenance to the term so many have applied to us, "The Raposo (n now, Malove) Clan!See More
Monday, August 8, 2011
Picture a tow truck with a massive chain, pulling a large vehicle out of deep mud. Now, replace a few links of the chain with a weak small chain. Despite the strength of the larger links or the power of the tow truck, the job is impossible. The weaker links fail.
The body in movement is very similar to the chain of the tow truck. If any required areas are weak, the body is unable to complete the desired task. If pushed beyond capacity, the weaker links will break and injury will result. Unlike the tow truck chain, in the human "chain", when weak links are protected, other areas jump in to do the job, effectually overstraining themselves. The outcome; the weak gets weaker, the strong become over worked and tight and movement is imbalanced, risking the tearing of connective tissue and the wearing out of joint padding as bones unevenly rub across joints. Eventually, we hear cracking of ligaments and crunching of bone on bone. The resulting deterioration of joints is responsible for many aches and pains.
Osteoarthritis, degenerative disk disease, sciatic nerve pain, fibromyalgia, sometimes even migraine headaches find their true cause, or bare minimum an inflaming of symptoms related to muscle imbalance. Most of these issues can at least find some relief from strengthening and balancing the kinetic chain.
We hear alot about core strength, and rightly so. In an age of "sit and slump" at a desk, in a vehicle, in front of a TV, and even on exercise equipment, we are prone to neglect the core of our body. I'm thrilled that everywhere, people are getting up and moving their bodies!
Now, it's time to address HOW we move! The next step in overall body health and strength improvement is to create more balanced movement in general, and specifically to strengthen the "weaker links" in the kinetic chain. There are several areas of the body that trainers see neglected and in need of strengthening. Overall, I find the muscles that surround the shoulder blades to be the most common area of weakness in most individuals. Unfortunately, many common ailments are either caused or negatively affected by this inferior "link" in the chain of everyday movement.
Do your current physical activities strengthen or weaken the area between, below and around the shoulder blades? Does it really matter? What spinal position do you spend the majority of your workday in? Do you experience any shoulder pain (front, back or shooting down the side of arm), neck, middle or lower back pain?
The region of the upper back spanning from neck to just below the shoulder blade, and across the back, virtually from arm pit to arm pit is probably the weakest link in the kinetic chain for most people. This holds true, especially for those who spend long hours at a computer. It can also be a problem for athletes because, with very few exceptions, sports usually strengthen muscles in the front of the upper body more than the back.
Most workouts neglect the majority of the 17 muscles attached to each shoulder blade, resulting in an imbalance in upper body movement. An old trainer's adage holds true, "Most people only train what they can see in the mirror." Not only can we not see the upper middle back without strategically placing mirrors to do so, most people can't even reach it, due to opposing tightness in the front of the upper body! In my many years training athletes, competitors, kids, seniors, post rehab patients and average exercisers, I have found this to be the overall MOST neglected area on almost everyone and unfortunately the underlying cause of most shoulder and neck injuries. Weakness in this area also contributes to lower back problems.
Babies are born with a concave curve in the spine reflecting the snuggled fetal position. Almost immediately, an instinctive impulse to "see the world" kicks in and the infant struggles to lift the head (or when being held upright, to thrust backward). This lifting movement strengthens the muscles supporting the spine in preparation for bearing the weight of standing and eventually walking. As the muscles strengthen, the spine realigns out of its former curve and into the optimal position to evenly and safely distribute body weight for upright movement.
Unfortunately, as we age, life's burdens tend to lean us back forward into the prenatel position, wreaking havoc on the discs and bones of the spine, while also stretching out and weakening the upper back and rotator cuff muscles. The resulting slumping position rolls shoulders and entire upper body weight forward, putting tremendous pressure on the lower back. I don't even need to start discussing how much damage this does to the lower back. It would be a conservative estimate to say that 75% of people have some type of lower back malady by the time they reach their 30th birthday!
I'm guessing, right this moment, your straightening up out of the slumping position you assumed to read this. You may also be lifting your rib cage, stretching out the chest, considering that pain you've between concerned about or the stiffness in your lower back.
Now settle back into your comfy little forward slump and think about your belly. The abdominal muscles are totally at rest in this position, while the lower back is both stretched and strained simultaneously. Ideally, in any upright position, the entire core, both front and back muscles are recruited simultaneously. If we could trigger tiny lights in each muscle fiber as it's fired, we would see a sparkling light show of constant movement around the core of our body as it balances the mass weight of the head, shoulders, arms, back and chest. So, if the majority of your day, the light show (especially in the abdominals) turns off....well, you really can't expect it to easily jump into action at command, much less display an amazing six pack at the beach!
By now, I hope the importance of addressing weaker areas of the kinetic chain, is starting to take it's rightful place of importance in your quest for improving your health and fitness. Even adequate breathing is constrained by the slumping forward position that compresses the diaphragm, preventing full aspiration of the lungs. Like most insidious bad habits, this one sneaks into our sitting, standing and moving norms and then strengthens its own cycle unless we actively work on reversing it. Follow the example of the newborn, "training" the weak muscles to "see" what they're missing out on, and you will most likely be physically rejuvenated while diminishing aches and pains, achieving greater overall strength and presenting a more attractive, confident stance. Like mom said, "Stand up straight!"
I include a variety of exercises, addressing upper back and shoulder stability in my client's training programs, as well as in my own workouts. I'll be introducing a number of these, complete with tips and pictures to assist you in proper form. Of course, an awareness of good posture usually arises when we begin to address this problem area. Hopefully, this will spill over into your everyday activities and help you develop a lifestyle conducive to strengthening your entire upper body for greater balance and strength.
Here's a great suspension exercise that targets this area:
1. Hold arms dirctly above head to find starting position.
2. Keep feet in that position and drop into a squat.
3. Use lower body to raise yourself up while lifting arms above head. Near top, start using arms to complete lift, while squeezing shoulder blades back and down.
4. Afer reaching top (shoulder blades squeezed firmly back and down) return to squat position and repeat.
Keep arms straight throughout movement. Use as much lower body as needed, then allow arms to start working when they are able.