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Runners – How to maximise your training time!

Posted on 26th June 2017 by

A lot of runners get stuck into a rut of running the same route at the same pace week in, week out. Whilst this is a fine way of maintaining our current fitness level it is not going to be enough to help us run further or faster. Even just adding the miles at our habitual comfortable pace will only lead to modest improvements in our endurance.

To really get the most out of our training we need to add variety. This challenges both our muscles and our energy systems in new ways to increase the rate at which they adapt to our training. Not only that but it has the added psychological bonus of experimenting with new routes and new training regimes to help keep us motivated and reduce risk of injury.

If you’re short on time the great news is that you don’t need to spend hours pounding away on the tarmac to achieve significant changes in your speed and endurance – you’re likely to get more benefit from a 30 minute higher intensity interval session than from a 1.5 hour run, although they both have their place!

There are 4 main types of training every runner should have in their programme:

  • Long slow run (LSR)
  • Tempo run
  • Speed/hill/interval session
  • Cross training

Long slow run

The LSR should be your longest (and slowest!) run of the week, the one which you gradually add miles to. This steady state sub-maximal training helps to build capillary density and increases number of mitochondria in your muscle cells which are an important part of our aerobic energy system. By doing this we increase the endurance and efficiency of both our cardiovascular system and our muscles. It also primes our tendons and bones to increase their stiffness to cope with gradually increases distances.

Tempo run

Tempo pace is described as ‘comfortably hard’. It is the maximum pace that we can sustain for approximately 1 hour. You should not be able to talk in full sentences but also not gasping for air if you are working in tempo zone.

Training in the ‘tempo zone’ means you are working at or just below your lactate threshold i.e. the point where the bodies ability to remove lactate from the blood is overtaken by the amount of lactate being produced.

As lactate levels increase the body begins to feel fatigued. Therefore by training just below our threshold we gradually increase it – this means we delay the onset of fatigue, helping us run further and faster.

Tempo runs should start with a 10 min warm up then aim to run for 20 minutes at the fastest pace you could sustain for 1 hour. As this gets easier you can gradually increase the time in the tempo zone up to 60 minutes.

Speed/hill/interval session

There are thousands of different ways to do interval sessions. These are the work outs that are going to increase your overall speed and power. They need to be short but hard – if you aren’t out of breath at the end you didn’t do it right! Don’t try to add intervals to your long runs, you won’t be able to work maximally and so you won’t get the full benefit. These sessions should last about 30 minutes in total, allowing 5-10 minutes for warm up and some recovery time in the middle. The fitter you are the shorter the recovery periods you’ll need between intervals and the more sets you can add.

Here’s a few ideas:

Intervals

Begin with: 10 min warm up, run 1 min mod-hard effort: 1 min easy jogging x 5
Progress to: 10 min warm up, 1 min max effort with 90 secs recovery x 10

Hill training

Begin with: 10 min warm up, 3 x 30 secs moderate effort uphill, walking back down
Progress to: 5 x 1min hard effort uphill, jogging back down with 30-60secs rest in between sets
Start with smaller hills then progress to steeper ones!

Cross training

Cross training means doing something other than running! This allows ‘active rest’ – working different muscle groups to running which prevents muscle imbalance but also training our running muscles in different ways to allows greater strength adaptations without overloading the tendons and joints.

Low impact options are great so try swimming or cycling for cardio. Pilates helps to build up your core postural muscles, making you more efficient when you run, and resistance training using relatively light weights and high repetitions allows you to strengthen and tone muscles without gaining muscle mass.

If you’ve got a race coming up, like the Winchester Half Marathon, which is particularly hilly, mixing up your training is crucial.

Read More

Running Injuries – The Basic Principles

Running Rehab Service

 

 


New report shows health benefits of swimming

Posted on 22nd June 2017 by

A new report has just been published, that outlines the health benefits of swimming.

Based on significant evidence and research, the report summarises that:

“As one of the most popular modes of physical activity, swimming/aquatic exercise confers significant physical health benefits for both healthy individuals and those with disease. Furthermore, these health benefits extend across the entire life-course – from foetus through to the frail elderly.”

As physiotherapist, we often recommend swimming to our patients. Water is an excellent environment for exercising in, not only as a regular, low impact form of exercise but also if you’re recovering from an injury. The buoyancy of water helps promote freedom of movement, increasing joint mobility and easing pain and stiffness. You don’t have to go to a pool and swim lengths! We often give people exercises to do in the water, that they wouldn’t always be able to do on dry land. It is also a fantastic way of maintaining fitness if you aren’t able to take part in your normal high impact exercise (such as running) due to an injury. Swimming can be a way to maintain cardiovascular fitness and endurance, whilst your injury heals and progress is being made at gradually returning you to your normal exercise.

A recent example of a young patient we’ve had at goPhysio, where swimming has been excellent. An 11 year old keen footballer with Severs (heel pain related to growth), Unable to play or attend football training more than twice a week due to heel pain, this young boy was becoming increasingly frustrated, starting to gain weight and loose cardiovascular fitness. Part of the management of Severs is to modify activity and treatments are limited, with time and normal growth rate  being a key part of symptom reduction. So, he was advised to start swimming regularly and his progress has been amazing. He’s felt more positive, been able to maintain and improve fitness and has gradually increased his time on the pitch, without aggravating his pain. Swimming has paid a key part in helping his endurance, strength, muscle flexibility and psychological wellbeing.

The report summarises that  for musculoskeletal health “evidence suggests that aquatic exercise has positive effects for a wide range of musculoskeletal conditions, favourably influencing pain, function and, for some, quality of life. The nature of the aquatic environment is ideally suited to individuals with MSK problems, given the reduced compressive joint force secondary to buoyancy.”

Health Benefits of Swimming

Source: The health & wellbeing benefits of swimming. Commissioned by Swim England’s Swimming and Health Commission, chaired by Professor Ian Cumming, Produced June 2017

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Everybody’s Free To Wear Sunscreen

Posted on 21st June 2017 by

Anyone familiar with music from the 1990s must remember ‘Everybody’s Free To Wear Sunscreen’ – Baz Luhrmann’s adaptation of an article originally written by Mary Schmich for a column in the Chicago Tribune.

As I was driving earlier this morning, the song was playing on the radio. Almost a decade and a half since I first listened to the song, the words all seemed to be more poignant and have much more significance in my life. There was a particular line in the song that struck a chord with me (around 2 minutes 48 into the song):

“Enjoy your body. Use it every way you can. Don’t be afraid of it, or what other people think of it. It’s the greatest instrument you’ll ever own.”

Having recently been spending a lot of time working on what our core values are at goPhysio, this line really encompasses everything we are & everything we do.

Enjoy your body – we are here to help make sure you can enjoy the amazing things your body is engineered to do. Walk, run, jump, ski, sit & move, whatever it is we help to make sure you can do these things without pain or injury, in the best way physically possible.

Use it every way you can – make the most of your physical abilities by staying pain & injury free. Have the confidence to try new things and push your body to find your own limitations.

It is the greatest instrument you’ll ever own – the daily advances in technology really do blow me away. But stop & think just for a moment how amazing the human body is and what we rely on it to do for us day in, day out! I know it’s a bit of a cliche, but having heard that line, it really did make me think how precious & great the body is and how privileged we are every day to be able to help people take care of their most precious instrument! You can buy the latest iPod or computer, replace & update it, but we really do need to take care of our body and appreciate what it can and does do for us every day.

If you want a little trip down memory lane (or if you’ve never heard the song & words before) you can watch the video here on You Tube – enjoy!

p.s. Don’t forget your sunscreen!

The featured image was part of some work completed by Coventry University.

 

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Beware of the Flip Flop!

Posted on 16th June 2017 by

Today, 16th June 2017, sees National Flip Flop Day! (Yes, that really is a national day!!) With the wonderful weather this week and set to be beautiful over the weekend, flip flops are are common footwear of voice!

Flip flops are great for chucking on to get from the car to the beach and walking around the pool. But this footwear is playing havoc with our feet!

In the summer months we see so many people coming into the clinic with foot and ankle problems such as achilles tendonitis and plantar fasciitis. In many of the people with knee, hip & back problems that come to see us, we also find that a sudden increase in wearing flip flops for long periods of time has played a part in their problem.

Flip flops provide no support for your feet, they are often made of very flexible rubber with little additional structure to hold your foot in place. This causes considerable stress to your feet as you rely on your toes to grip with every step and the additional stress placed on your plantar fascia, achilles tendon and other structures in your foot.

National Flip Flop DaySo, if you’re going for a longer walk or going to be on your feet all day, ditch the flip flop and wear something more supportive. If you’ve noticed you’re suddenly getting pain in your foot ankle or other part of your leg or back and have been wearing flip flops more now the sun is out, try reducing how much you wear them and see if this makes a difference.

#NationalFlipFlopDay


Read More

Achilles teninopathies

Plantar Fasciitis

Custom Orthotics

 

 

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Men’s Health Week- Have you got a hazardous waist?

Posted on 13th June 2017 by

This week is Men’s Health Week 2017 – which runs from June 12-18 – the focus this year is about abdominal obesity – better known as ‘belly fat’. Men's Health Week 2017

Why? Because it’s the type of fat that’s bad for your health and men are more likely to have it.

Belly fat is a problem because it lurks not just beneath the surface but also gets down deep and surrounds your vital organs. Regardless of your overall weight, a large amount of belly fat increases your risk of:

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Sleep apnea
  • Premature death from any cause
  • High blood pressure

So, men need to get those tape measures out. If you have a waist measurement over 37 inches (94cm), you are at increased risk of diabetes, heart disease, cancer, stroke and erection problems. If it’s over 40 inches (102cm), you’re ar a considerably increased risk of all these. The measurement is not the same as your trouser size. Measure your stomach at the belly button.

MOVE MORE, EAT WELL, WATCH THE BOOZE.

Want to get serious about tackling your waist? We offer a range of gentle and carefully managed ways to exercise and get you moving more.

  • First and foremost, if you’ve picked up an injury or are in pain, the first thing you do is move less. This can have a substantial knock on effect on your activity levels and habit. So, if you’re in pain or have an injury that’s stopping you being active – whether it’s cycling, walking to work, playing golf, running or doing a few laps of the pool, get in touch or book your physio appointment so that we can help you sort out your injury.
  • Pilates is a fantastic way to get you moving well. Many of the exercises really focus on that core middle area and although they aren’t specifically designed to slim down your waist, many people report that this is an additional benefit.
  • If you’re over 60 and keen to exercise but wary of going to a gym or not sure what exercises are advised or appropriate, why not come along to our Positive Steps exercise classes. They are specially designed for the older generations, and will help give you the confidence to push your body a little.
  • If back pain is stopping you from exercising, why not try our Active Backs classes. Exercises sessions specifically tailored for people with back pain, they will help you learn what exercises will help with your back and again, help improve your confidence in exercising.

Men's Health Week 2017

 

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A Perfect Working Day?

Posted on 11th June 2017 by

 

I came across this image on a blog last week. Could this be a timetable for a perfect, healthy work day?

 

Ideal Day for Corporate Athletes

In a world where we re almost permanately ‘switched on’, with less clear definition between work and downtime, more disrupted sleep routines, more sitting and less activity – do we need to go back to basics and het some sort of structure and routine back in order to preserve our health?

Read more here.

 


Steps To A Healthier Heart

Posted on 6th June 2017 by

On Friday 9th June, we’re joining The British Heart Foundation for ‘Wear It, Beat It’ and wearing red to officially launch our new fundraising campaign to raise money to purchase a defibrillator for public use, to be located outside our clinic in Chandlers Ford.

Whilst an AED is a potentially life saving piece of kit, we also want to play a part in helping prevent cardiac disease. Our role in this is to help promote and keep people physically active by offering a speedy recovery from injuries and helping minimise ‘rest’ time and time out of sports and hobbies.

Here’s a little reminder of 7 steps you can take to help you have a healthier heart. If you’re in the clinic on Friday, why not join us to wear red too! #WearItBeatIt

Heart disease prevention infographic

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


AEDs Save Lives – We Need Your Help!

Posted on 31st May 2017 by

AED Fundraising Our team at goPhysio undergo regular first aid training. Part of this always involves training on how to use an Defibrillator or AED. What struck the team, was firstly how crucial having access to an AED is for survival rates from a cardiac episode, but secondly, how easy they are to use.

The first aid trainer showed us an app to find our nearest AED and the nearest ones to us in our section of Bournemouth Road in Chandlers Ford are at Park Surgery on Hursley Road (only available during opening hours) and further down Bournemouth Road at the dentist.

Given the numbers of people that are in the area, using our facilities and those other local businesses in the vicinity, having access to an AED could save crucial minutes and ultimately save a life.

Currently, over 30,000 people suffer an out of hospital cardiac arrest in the UK every year, without immediate treatment 90-95% of these victims will die. The only definitive treatment to Sudden Cardiac Arrest is immediate CPR along with a life-saving shock from a defibrillator. Having a readily available defibrillator in public locations will help to increase survival statistics and will protect those in the area against SCA. In the event of a cardiac arrest, if CPR and defibrillation are provided within 3-5 minutes of collapse, a victim’s chances of survival can increase from 6% to 74%.

There are actually very few easily accessible defibrillators available in the area. The one we purchase and install will be in a wall cabinet stored safely outside our clinic and accessibly so it can be quickly retrieved in an emergency 24 hours a day. All our staff are first aid trained, and will be at hand if needed.

We’re officially launching our fundraising campaign on Friday 9th June to co-incide with the British Heart Foundation’s Wear It Beat It campaign. Our team killall be wearing red that day to help raise awareness of the life saving research that the British Heart Foundation carries out and to kickstart our fundraising campaign.

Here at goPhysio we are looking to match fund 50% of the cost of the AED and installation, so we’re looking to raise £1100. We will cover the reminding cost and ongoing running and maintenance costs.

If you’d like to donate towards this life saving piece of equipment for your local area, visit our Just Giving page. Thank you!

#WearItBeatIt #AEDSavesLives


Behind The Strong Room

Posted on 31st May 2017 by

We are just in the throws of finishing off the last of the work in our new home – THE STRONG ROOM.

This ground floor room has been kitted out in some great equipment from the likes of Rogue Fitness and TRX, to provide a dedicated space for rehabilitation of our patients.

Why The Strong Room?

The Strong RoomAs many local residents may recall, 11 Bournemouth Road, Chandlers Ford, was once a National Westminster Bank. What does every bank need? A vaulted safe room, of course, AKA a strong room. When we purchased the property, the original strong room was still in situ.

The heavily re-enforced walls and roof no longer served their purpose and to fit in with our grand plans, this area of the building was demolished. (Not an easy task I can add!).

In it’s place, a new space was created, to house our rehabilitation service. As an adage to what once stood there, we decided to name this space The Strong Room. Why? Because this space will focus on improving strength (amongst other things!).

What is rehabilitation?

Physiotherapy for people with aches, pains, musculoskeletal and sports injuries, unless you were a high level athlete with access to such facilities, traditionally consisted of treatment based around a treatment couch. Such treatments were often pretty passive, and accompanied by a programme of exercises for the injured person to complete in their own time at home. These exercises are generally progressed at the next physiotherapy session until the patient felt ‘better’ and able to resume normal activities.

However, the outcome and success of treatment often falls on adherence to exercise, the correct exercise technique and the type, timing and progression of the exercises linked to tissue healing and functional goals.

With instant access to both the facilities that will help offer a huge range of exercise programmes and onsite support of our specialist Sports Therapist to augment our Physiotherapy team, this space is going to be a great asset to what we can offer you at goPhysio.

The space is going to be used for both 1-2-1 rehabilitation during physio sessions and also regular group rehab. More news on this service will be revealed very soon.

If you’re in the clinic, let us show you the great new facilities we have on offer and  find out more about how it could help you.

Strong Room

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


#BeStrong


Osteoporosis

Posted on 25th May 2017 by

The definition of osteoporosis comes from, ‘Osteo’ – a prefix denoting bone and ‘porosis’ – implying the weakening of a structure or porous bone.

It’s the loss of boney tissue resulting in bones that are weakened and liable to fracture.

Osteoporosis

Who is at risk osteoporosis?

  • Those with low body weight
  • Maternal history of the disease
  • Smokers
  • Excess alcohol consumption
  • Low dietary calcium intake
  • Late puberty
  • History of eating disorders
  • Generally physically inactive
  • High caffeine intake
  • History of steroid use/treatment
  • Previous fractures, particularly after menopause

Who can be affected by osteoporosis?

Worldwide it is estimated that 200 million women suffer from osteoporosis. It is unknown how many men suffer from the disease but it is on the increase. Although it is commonly thought of as an affliction of the older population, it can affect people of all ages. It is more common amongst the white and Asian population and less so in black populations.

What potential problems arise from osteoporosis?

The bones become weakened and result in low bone mass and are, therefore, more susceptible to a fracture. In the UK there are an estimated 60,000 hip, 50,000 wrist and 40,000 spine fractures due to osteoporosis every year.

Other fragility fractures are also associated with osteoporosis e.g. pelvis and upper arm.

1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men surviving to the age of 80 will suffer a hip fracture.

What are the signs and symptoms of osteoporosis?

It is usually a silent disease until the individual suffers a fracture. However, there are many screening tests that can now be done and if you think you are at risk of osteoporosis from the risk factors above, it is advised to see your GP.

A Colles fracture is a break of the wrist and is most common among women aged between 45 and 65. It is often the first sign of osteoporosis.

Back pain can be a symptom of osteoporosis. Pain in the back can gradually creep up over time and your posture can become noticeably more flexed forwards. Over time, you can lose height too. Episodes of acute back pain which settle after a few weeks can be due to spontaneous vertebral fractures, caused by osteoporosis.

Physiotherapy and osteoporosis

Physiotherapy can have a key role to play in both the treatment and prevention of osteoporosis. There are a number of ways in which we can help.

  • Education on appropriate exercise, posture, diet and lifestyle changes. This can be both to prevent osteoporosis or help minimise it’s impact of you’ve been diagnosed with osteoporosis.
  • Exercises to target vulnerable areas and help keep the bones and joints strong.
  • Core stability and muscle strengthening exercise programmes.
  • Balance exercises to help prevent falls.
  • Advice on water-based exercises to help strengthen core stability, improve range of movement and reduce pain.
  • Ongoing support in order to self-manage the disease in the long term including preventing and managing fractures.

The role of exercise in managing osteoporosis

Weight-bearing exercise is proven to have a positive effect on bone mass.  The less weight that goes through the bones, the more likely they are to weaken further, so weight bearing and resistance exercises play a crucial part. Specific exercise, as prescribed by your physiotherapist, target the vulnerable areas of the body. Through strengthening the muscles and keeping joint stiffness to a minimum, you are less likely to suffer from pain and the risk of fractures may be reduced.

Other exercise to be considered:

We offer a range of services at goPhysio to help support you if you are looking to prevent or minimise the impact of osteoporosis. If you’d like any help or advice, please give us a call.