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Strengthen and Rebuild Lung Function and Power September 26, 2018

This was originally created to help a friend having some lung/coughing problems possibly related to EIA , a childhood with smoking parents and high altitude endurance running.

…….[Dietary Changes to rebuild lungs (after illness or smoking) and deal with EIA (Exercise Induced Asthma)]

Exercise , especially extended endurance work leaves muscles and the lungs inflamed. This is not necessarily a problem but continued use/overuse can lead to discomfort, illness or damage.

Foods and Drinks to improve Lung Function and Recovery:

  1. Tomatoes – Cooked and Raw , Cooked fresh tomatoes are best But low salt canned diced or chopped tomatoes are good.
  2. Apples- raw with skin, cooked with skin, homemade applesauce, baked apples ( not pie)
  3. Onions and Garlic- as much as you can stand…add to salad, sandwich, omelet ad especially to soup/stew.
  4. Berries – cranberries,blueberries, raspberies,strawberries,cetc..
  5. Citrus- fruit {limited juice but fresh squeezed} Lemon juice added to water or tea is the exception
  6. cabbage family veggies (brassicas for the nerdy among us) brussels sprouts, broccoli, bok choi, cabbage( green and red), Kale
  7. Ginger -great in soups/stews and added to tea also great as a “tea” on its own.
  8. Green and Black tea- great hot when lung inflammation is active add lemon juice and fresh grated ginger for a BiG Bang impact. Iced tea can be a great recovery drink to rebuild inflamed lung and related cardiovascular tissue. Especially if brewed with a sliced lemon and 3/4” piece of slice ginger.  [plus ginger is noted to be anti-inflammatory for musculoskeltal discomfort]
  9. Darky Leafy greens- collard,kales,spinach, mustard, dandelion ( great added to soups or with soup served on top)
  10. Popular superfoods chlorella and spirulina have great reputation for recovery benefits
  11. cayenne pepper – fresh is best but powdered has efficacy as well( just less Vitamin C)
  12. Peppermint – added to tea, or foods/dressing…or leaves chewed like gum or candy
  13. Root vegetable- sweet potatoes, beets, parsnips, turnips, carrots ( with skin)

Avoid

  • Canned and Processed meats
  • Fast Food
  • Excessive Iodized salt (limited sea salt ok)
  • carbonated beverages
  • sugar( products with processed sugar)

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@martyroddy

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Grip Strength : Helps with Deadlifts,Pull-ups and Games August 17, 2018

Performance improvement with moves like pull ups and deadlifts ( even rows) can be assisted with a careful focus on improving and maintaining grip strength.

It can be difficult to add reps on the,pull up bar when your hands give out after “holding your butt” in the air for 20-30 seconds. A powerful grip also allows you and your body to focus on performance of the move without concentration directed at holding on…..for dear life.

Eliminate the worry about grip and focus on …ONE MORE REP…..OR 19 more.

The following are some of my favorites:

Plate Squeeze (smooth side out) – grab 2 weight plates smooth side out and hold them a set length of time [ do so over padded floor in case you let go] – a) stand in place b) plates in both hands and walk c) lift as if doing dumbbell curl

Farmers walk ( dumbbell, plates, barbell) – grab a moderately heavy weight, in both hands and walk 10 strides and turn around

Hex Hold ( dumbbell by the end) – Grab dumbbell by the weight( fat end,sometimes hex shaped) and hold.

Dead Hang ( pull-up bar, pull-up bar with towel or squat pad ) – grab overhead bar and …HANG … As long as you can or a few sets of timed hangs. Increase the difficulty with a towel or pad to make the bar THICKER, to,further challenge the grip

Wrist roller- if gym has one, do rolls forward and reverse grip to increase impact

Great basic grip exercises , discussed above:

13 grip strength exercises( good stuff but may be overkill)

Add a few grip exercises or get serious and a full plan of moves and sets/reps. It will pay off. In my own fitness efforts the grip training also keeps my hands nimble and flexible as I injured many fingers during a youthful athletic career and want them to work until I now longer need them…

@martyroddy

 

Are You a Runner or a Jogger ? August 14, 2018

I have often heard folks who run regularly “put down” folks that jog. They seem to think jogging is some how inherently LESS than running….or joggers are not up to the same “level” as runners.

When a person has a pair of sneakers, tennis shoes or running shoes on (depends on where you live, RIGHT??) and is on the road or track or treadmill they are , we are all the same …AT THAT MOMENT.... Are you running or jogging?

We are all working out / exercising and becoming more healthy and fit.

Joggers go out on the road track or treadmill regularly but usually have a smaller chance of injury because they tend to take it easier with each workout. Many of us “joggers” have chosen to be joggers to take it easy and exercise with focus on fun and fat and not time and performance. I have run in well over 100 races, but as a one time football player…the running is strictly for fun and fitness( physical and psychological )

Many runners and joggers share the same silly, shiny sweat resistant clothes, funny shoes and even crazy electronics. Let’s share the love and move and seat together.

@martyroddy

 

Pull Ups : Impossible Torture or Foundational Fitness Basic

I have spent many hours, days, even years in gyms. Lifting weights, pushing/ Pulling my body and running up and down a court with a round ball. During those years the basic movement that always challenged me was the PULL UP.

Back in the heart of my football years I spent the offseason getting stronger and piling on muscle and power and for several years I counted on pull ups as a foundation move that supported much of the heavy lifting. Even though I could never do more than 20-25 reps ( at the end of the summer) , the work paid off. My tall ,thick frame and long arms created a challenge.

As a slightly more mature “adult ” , at least age wise I am interested in doing these again.

After ” playing” a few days at the gym and doing a few,,…very few reps as well as a few negatives ( helps to be 6’8″, I can jump all the way up) I know I need a plan to approach the exercise.

Where do I start? Just go to the gym , do a few sets of a few pull-ups and repeat every couple of days???? Or create/follow a plan ? The following graphic is a great starting point.

I can use it to develop strength and evaluate my current level. Steps 1.2.3 can b effectively used in the development phase and later after goals have been reached to maintain. Body rows are not a direct move but will engage most of the same muscles.. A combination of pull-ups, flex hangs and then negatives will result in increased strength and eventually the reps we want.

Once we have done some basic building,build-up moves we can follow something like the following :

This is just an example of the multitudinous pull-up and other exercise programs available,on the net.

@martyroddy

 

Neck and Back Pain- Exercise, Stretching and Yoga…Cures!!?? November 24, 2017

During a recent conversation with a friend we discussed her headache and neck issues. The focus was on non-medical efforts to relieve her pain and prevent it in the future. The pain always started in or near the neck and her jaw.

We discussed a few stretches and exercises and discussed yoga. I looked for a couple of  articles that would describe moves/poses that can provide comfort to painful neck and head.

The following are some goodbasic moves/poses for the body and specifically the neck.

 

https://www.yogajournal.com/poses/yoga-by-benefit/neck-pain

http://www.chopra.com/articles/6-yoga-poses-to-help-relieve-neck-pain#sm.0006ka9hx6zdewe11bg1znqzmnk4t

 

These are a bit more broad brush. Effective for the body and ultimately for the neck.

https://www.beachbodyondemand.com/blog/9-yoga-poses-to-help-relieve-neck-and-shoulder-pain

 

 

@martyroddy

 

 

Heart Failure,Atrial Fibrillation (A Fib) and Exercise September 27, 2017

Now that I am 6 months beyond the diagnosis of Heart Failure with Atrial Fibrillation I am looking at information about both of these conditions and my personal feelings and health.

I am still in A Fib but I have also lost well over 100 pounds and continue to workout , eat well and workout some more. I am doing a variety of cardio workouts to pump the blood, exercise the heart and of course burn some calories and fat. I am also doing some resistance exercise ( weightlifting and bodyweight moves)  to rebuild the body and muscular system.

I have written about the exercise and will do more in the future but my cardio includes walking outside, rowing on the Concept 2 Erg Trainer, Riding the Cybex stationary bike and the Cybex Arc Trainer ( Elliptical ) and starting on the Nautilus Stairmaster.

Now as Dr.Gupta says in the exercise video I may be able to attempt  a marathon again in the future. I need to take it easy and build up slowly- if I continue with a smart diet( currently plant based low fat diet) and the exercise program and a plan to build up to the kind of training necessary for a 4-6 hour run.

Regardless of that outcome I plan on dropping more of the weight- keeping it off and maintaining healthy lifestyle while dealing with the long term concerns with the heart failure diagnosis and possibly changing/improving on it.

Time to publish and eat a proper meal and later to the gym.

A video with info about A Fib…Not a good diagnosis BUT not the END either.

 

Exercise and Heart Disease video- good info and a great quote, ” for most, exercise allows for people to fell better AND a longer life than most medication only plans.”

Another good quote- wrong to dive into exercise , gradually increase effort and amount of exercise.

 

@martyroddy

 

 

Cardio Training at the Gym July 23, 2017

Now that the Heart Failure diagnosis has been "lived with" for a few months and physical activity and exercise has been adjusted to live with AND overcome the challenge.

Now the most simple exercise is walking and later running BUT with funny knees I must do a variety of cardio/ aerobic exercises to pump the blood, build up the heart and lungs and rebuild the rest of my body. I joined a gym in my neighborhood that offers a few benefits…in this order:

  1. Concept 2 Rowing machine
  2. Reasonable price
  3. 24 hour access

I posted a video of the Cybex ArcTrainer, it is the first "elliptical " cardio machine I could use. It has a proper range of motion for my 6 foot 8 inch body, and long monkey arms.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r58nxtqD_zQ&feature=share

I have gotten to,the point where I can go 20 minutes ion the machine but I am loving it and will push until I can go,30-45 minutes. I am enjoying the ArcTrainer almost as much as I enjoy the Concept2 Rower. I also mix in walking at home around my neighborhood And when necessary on the treadmill at the gym.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_YfAjjVsWEI&feature=share

I continue to workout, get strong and lose weight. I have a distance to go to reach my target weight (weight freshman year in High school) and it is a good ways still to go BUT I have lost over 100 pounds to date,
My food plan is working and might be do-able for he long term.

@martyroddy