Many have made the New Year’s resolution of exercising more, or “to get in shape”. This resolution can mean many things to different people, but usually it means moving more and/or eating healthy foods.   

Whatever the goal, exercise and healthy eating complement each other in many ways.  Whether one is trying to lose weight, add muscle, recover from an injury, or just be able to live life a little easier, exercise and healthy eating are important tools to aid you on your resolution journey and beyond.  

 As a fitness professional I will focus on physical activity aspect in this blog.  Regardless of where you are on your fitness journey, you may get to a point where you’re not sure what would be the best next step.  A well-educated fitness professional should be able to work with a clients medical history, find/target imbalances and asymmetries, and how to safely reach or direct one towards their goals with this information.  Everyone’s body is unique and therefore has individual needs based on the activates we do throughout the day and night. For example, if someone is a side sleeper and spends most of the night on one particular side, then their hips have probably shifted laterally and consequently their body isn’t working the way it should.  If a worker sits in an office, seated for many hours during the week, they may develop poor posture, which can lead to low back, neck, and shoulder pain. If a person likes to run for exercise and their goal is to run longer or faster, they may develop some muscle imbalances without proper strength training. This can cause injury due to the repetitive nature of the sport.  No matter the situation a good fitness professional can lead anyone to their next step.  

Secondly, as a Functional Movement Specialist, I understand that in order to move often, one must first move well.  If you practice quality movement, you will have a less chance of injury and trying new activities would be safe and fun!  For example, if someone squats and their knees are caving in or they are shifting to one side, they are creating more of an imbalance, reinforcing bad muscle memory, and causing wear and tear of the joints. The body will compensate in various ways to prevent weak areas from getting worse, in turn, leading to other parts of the body to break down and get worse!.  Working with a qualified and skilled fitness professional can help you in the evaluation of your movement quality. When quality movement is present, together we can plan workouts that are based around your goals, challenge new movement patterns, and add new activities to your daily routine while keeping you safe.  

I strongly encourage people to get out there and try new activities as much as possible.  If one wants to feel physically fit or confident enough for a specific activity then a structured fitness plan which strengthens the weak areas of the body can help prevent injury and is a must.  If you aren’t sure on what kind of activity to try, I always say as long as you are safe, try everything you can. So, in this new year that is full of goals to hit, I wish you all the best in 2020 and if you need any help achieving those goals, myself and the staff here at Ampersand will be here to lend a helping hand.  


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