#HealthierMe Series [Eat. Think. DO. Better]
Does the way you move (live) outside of the gym affect your workouts??
Okay so you go to the gym…Well for most of us that’s 3-5 days a week for an hour. The problem that most of us face however, is that we work well past the 3-5 hours in unfavorable positions i.e. at the desk, in the car, on the phone or computer.
These positions we live most of hours in are usually the most common cause for tight hips and ankles, those forward rounded shoulders, and a weak core and back, just to name a few. So when we get into the gym we wonder why our bodies are freaking out on us. We need to learn to train our bodies to move in a way that is different from the majority of the time we spend our days. This means that it WILL BE DIFFICULT. When we jump right into these “new” positions at the gym without any prep or warning it can be a shock to our bodies.
Our body is like, “Hey we don’t move like this, remember that 8-hour work shift where we just sat at a desk and the 30 min of driving hunched over the steering wheel? Why are we doing this!? NO! I can’t! Not the gyyyymmmm!!!!”
And as it yells out, so do you because of the awkwardness you feel in an overhead squat. How many times have I heard people say, “I don’t know what it is, I just can’t seem to get in that position…”
Of course you can’t, you spent a lifetime in different movement patterns and many of which were not favorable to an excellent overhead squat. But hey there’s hope and the hope is, that our bodies are amazing at adapting! You might not ever get that “perfect” position (unless you started when you were 7) but your body can adapt and change tremendously.
So this is where the rubber meets the road….What do we do now? The goal is to focus on one or two things and attack. If you want a better overhead position? Then do t-spine mobility exercises daily until you see a change. Be aware of your posture at all times. Pull those shoulder blades back, and force yourself to go deep in those squat stretches we like to do every day.
Challenge your body to change and it will.
Remember that keeping your back pulled flat & tight and tightening your core is almost universal to all the movements we do in CrossFit. So be aware of that and be aware of what your body is actually doing. If it’s different from what it should be, then correct it. Know that for most of us, our posterior-chain (all the back-side muscles of our body) is weak. So any pulling, deadlifting and other back exercises will help strengthen the posterior-chain. And remind yourself to keep that form even when you are not doing the lifts. This will help train your body to default towards a correct position even when you’re not lifting or exercising.
3 things to start doing right now to make every lift better:
Be aware of your posture (position) at all times -- in the gym, while lifting, and all movement outside of the gym!
Keep the deadlift & squat form anytime you pick something off the ground, not just when you have a barbell.
Challenge your body to reach proper positions.
Still need help? Come talk to me about some exercises and stretches you can do on your own. Then, build a plan to make it happen!