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Energy Zappers 

1. Dehydration
Your extreme fatigue might be coming from hidden sources. Nixing these spirit-depleting factors from your life will automatically help reboot your verve.
It turns out that even moderate dehydration (which results in the loss of 3 percent of your body weight) can make you feel mentally sluggish and mess with your concentration. The next time you're feeling foggy or lightheaded, don't just assume you're in serious need of some food. Try downing a glass or two of water.

2. Cell Phones
Checking your cell before bed amps up brain activity, making it harder to doze off. Plus, any electronic gadget's artificial blue light can suppress the sleep hormone melatonin. A 2011 poll by the National Sleep Foundation found that 20 percent of people ages 19 to 29 are awakened by a call, text, or e-mail at least a few nights a week. Power it down well before bedtime.

3. Medication
Many drugs have veiled energy-sapping side effects. Chief among them are some classes of antidepressants and certain beta-blockers used to prevent migraines or treat high blood pressure. If you start a new med and feel more lethargic than usual, see doctor Bert for an alternative. (If there isn't one, take your dose right before bed.)

 4. Overtraining
While working out zaps the stress hormone cortisol, prolonged sweat sessions--like, for example, regularly running for more than 30 minutes at a steady rate--can actually rev cortisol production. Interval training (bursts of intense activity) combined with strength training (free-weight and body-weight moves) helps keep cortisol in check.

5. Low Iron
The mineral shuttles oxygen around your body and removes waste from your cells. If you're not getting around 18 milligrams a day, your body struggles to function properly and you can feel worn out; low iron levels in your diet can cause iron deficiency anemia. If you feel sluggish, call our office and ask for a simple blood test to see if you should be taking a supplement. 

For more information please call our office at 786-360-6355 

Strength Training for Beginners (and Experts, Too)

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Chiropractic Care and Strength Training

Regular vigorous exercise is a requirement for good health. Ideally, every adult is exercising for at least 30 minutes five times per week. Regular chiropractic care provides fundamental support for this necessary level of physical activity.

Regular exercise requires optimal functioning of muscles, joints, and bones. In turn, such optimal performance requires full and free functioning of your nerve system. The nerve system sends timely instructions to all the rest of your body systems, informing cells, tissues, and organs as to when to do their jobs and exactly how much of a job to do. Regular chiropractic care removes irritation and inflammation from spinal nerves and other critical nerve tissue, helping ensure that exercising muscles receive the information they need to do their jobs well. By helping keep your nerve system healthy, regular chiropractic care helps you get the most out of your investment in exercise.

Strength training, otherwise known as weight training, is one of those activities that provides a wide range of benefits for the person who does it regularly. Like yoga, strength straining makes all your muscles stronger, enhances flexibility, and improves cardiovascular capability and capacity. In fact, two strength training sessions per week combined with one or two yoga classes per week will lead to super-fitness for most people within only a couple of months.

Strength training is beneficial for teenagers, young adults, and older adults.1 Many strength training exercises are done in a weightbearing position, and the process of doing reps and sets with a modestly or moderately heavy load makes your bones stronger. Not only muscles, but also the soft tissues of the musculoskeletal system, including tendons, ligaments, and joint cartilage, are made sturdier by receiving increased supplies of oxygen and other nutrients. Engaging in a regular program of strength training will provide more restful sleep, rid your metabolism of accumulated toxins, add sparkle and tone to your skin, and improve your overall sense of well-being. All at the low price of two to three hours per week.

The key question is how to begin. Many books and online training videos are available. Most fitness centers offer a complimentary lesson or two with a personal trainer to enable you to learn the basics. Simply put, you want to train all of your major muscle groups once per week. For example, you can exercise your chest and back muscles on one day and your shoulders and arms on another day. If you're also doing one or two yoga classes per week, or one yoga class and two walking or running days per week, your leg muscles are covered.2

Let's say this is your chest and back day. Ideally you'll do three different exercises per body part. For your chest you could do lying-down (supine) bench presses with dumbbells, supine flies (in which you hold the dumbbells overhead and then open your arms out to the side), and incline bench presses with dumbbells. For your back, you could do one-arm rows, supine dumbbell pullovers (in which you use both hands to hold one dumbbell overhead and then lower the dumbbell all the way behind your head), and lat pulldowns on a machine. All together, doing these six different exercises, three sets per exercise, should take about one hour.

Then, two or three days later in the week, you do strength training for your shoulders, biceps, and triceps. Shoulder exercises could include seated overhead presses, standing lateral raises, and seated bent-over rows. Bicep exercises could include seated alternate incline curls, machine bicep curls, and seated concentration curls. Tricep exercises could include push-ups, lying (supine) tricep extensions, and machine tricep pressdowns. Again, these nine different exercises, three sets per exercise, should take about one hour.

There are many video clips available on the internet that demonstrate the mechanics of each of these exercises. Good form is critical. In fact, making sure your posture is balanced and your abdominal muscles are activated is more important than the amount of weight you are lifting.

Beginners, especially, need to know how much weight they should be using on each exercise.3 Importantly, lifting too much weight too soon will usually lead to injury. Of course, we want to work-out as safely as possible. Choose a weight at which you can comfortably do eight repetitions. If you can't do eight, the weight is too heavy. If eight repetitions with a particular weight seems ridiculously easy, try again with a weight that is 10% heavier. Repeat the process until you find the starting weight that is comfortable for you. There are many types of weight progression programs that you will employ as you become accustomed to the weight-training process. The main point is to begin to engage in this highly beneficial form of exercise. As your mastery of these techniques slowly improves, a new world of fitness, fun, and satisfaction will be revealed.

1Conceicao MS, et al: Sixteen weeks of resistance training can decrease the risk of metabolic syndrome in healthy postmenopausal women. Clin Interv Aging Epub Sept 16 2013

2Karavirta L, et al: Heart rate dynamics after combined strength and endurance training in middle-aged women: heterogeneity of responses. PLoS One 2013 Aug 27;8(8):e72664. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0072664

3Van Roie E, et al: Strength training at high versus low external resistance in older adults: Effects on muscle volume, muscle strength, and force-velocity characteristics. Exp Gerontol Epub ahead of print