2018 is off to a fresh start so what do I need to do to keep my muscle system in awesome working order and feeling amazing. There are tons of sources out there with almost all the same view on what to eat, how to exercise when to stretch, and how often you should have a massage. So, let’s dive into the subject and see where my quirky view on life will take us.
We will start out by exploring what our muscles, ligaments, and tendons do for us. On a very basic level, they keep us from being a blob of flesh. They allow us to stand, sit, and move around. Muscles can be voluntary and involuntary. The movement of our muscles is what makes the blood flow through our body. Therefore, when you sit for a long period of time your ankles and feet swell from the blood pooling and not be pumped out of your legs. Our ligaments help to stabilize the joints of our body. While the tendons attach our muscles to our bones. This is a very basic level and yes can be gone into in depth but for the normal everyday person, this is all you really need to know. The health of these three is important since as I tell my clients a bone can heal in 4-8 weeks, muscles in 3-6 months, a tendon in 6-12 months and ligament in 1-2 years. You can understand why we want to keep them healthy even if we are not professional athletes.
With the fad of being gluten-free, vegan, carb free or just about any other eating order one must remember to do these in moderation and under doctor’s care. The food pyramid was designed for a reason. All the sources I looked at said you need protein, carbohydrates, fats and vitamins and minerals. There are certain food that are better than others to eat to get these into your body. Your protein can come from lean meats, poultry, seafood, eggs and dairy products. Carbohydrates come from whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. It is best to eat unsaturated fats for muscle health that include walnuts, flaxseed, fish oils, peanut oil and olive oil. If you eat a well-balanced diet of the above items your body will naturally get the vitamins and minerals it needs to stay healthy. Remember to stay hydrated throughout the day and increase your water intake during the warm months.
Exercise is important for all individuals and should be done with assistance or on your own daily for at least 30 minutes. Our muscles like to be warmed up at least 10-20 minutes before exercise and cooled down 10-20 after exercise. You can also reduce injury to your muscle system by doing 10-15 minutes of stretching after your warm-up.
The icing on the cake is a massage every 2-4 weeks to keep your muscle structure loose and moving free of muscle knots. You also will note in a massage the therapist warms up your muscles before doing any work on your muscles. At the end of working on a muscle group, they will stretch this muscle group out by holding the stretch for the count of 20. Finishing off the massage with a cool down to let your muscle know it is time for them to work on their own. Massage is great for muscle health by bringing blood to the muscles, helping move toxins out of the muscle through the lymphatic system and by reminding the muscle to move smoothly.
Look forward to seeing you on my table to make your 2018 an awesome pain-free year.