New Years Fitness Goals

by Sami Sivén, PT, DPT, OCS, COMT

As we recover from our holiday food comas and resolve to get back to being healthier in the new year, don’t let your fitness goals be derailed come January 1st! If it has been a while since you have worked out, regardless of the activity, just remember to take it easy as you get back into a routine. As Physical Therapists, a lot of the injuries we see and treat are “overuse injuries”. There are two main ways these happen: Doing too much all the time and doing more than your body is used to. For the first example, think of a baseball pitcher who plays all year long and his/her shoulder never gets a moment’s rest; this is the reason there are now pitch counts in baseball. The breakdown is almost inevitable! For the second, let’s say you are a runner. If you usually run 3 miles, 3 times per week, then 9 miles is your chronic workload. If you decide to start running 4 miles every single day, this increase in weekly mileage is referred to as the “acute to chronic workload ratio”. Is this increase reasonable? No! What’s a reasonable amount? 10-30% seems to be the sweet spot.

At Beyond Limits Rehabilitation, we can assess your current fitness level and recommend a plan that is appropriate for you to avoid overuse injuries. Just as every person’s body is different so too are the fitness programs we recommend. After a thorough evaluation, we will then tailor our fitness/endurance programs to your specific needs and lifestyle goals. We will optimize your body’s function to enhance your ability to perform fitness activities safely and more effectively. Returning to fitness after New Years is an excellent goal, but it is not the time to hit the ground running (pardon the pun) at the level that you were at when you quit working out. Pretend you are a newbie to the gym and just go light for the first week or two. Don’t let this kill your enthusiasm, just dial it back a notch. Don’t forget to have fun and find something you love doing that challenges you physically. That is the best exercise, research backs that up! If you need a little help getting back into fitness, or run into trouble on your journey, we at Beyond Limits Rehabilitation are here to help guide you to get you back to doing what you love. Call us today to schedule an appointment!