Learning to run again after taking time off

Posted by Adam Gifford, MS, ATC, Ridgeview Rehab Specialties Athletic Trainer on Apr 26, 2016 1:40:19 PM

run-750466_1920.jpgThe winter season hits and we tend to put running on hold. Now that spring has sprung, you may feel the urge to start running again. However, getting back into the swing of things can be a little difficult if you haven't run for the past four to five months. Here are a few tips to get back in to training for those 5k, 10k, half and full marathon races.

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Topics: Fitness/activity

Creating a wellness plan you'll follow

Posted by Jessica Hess, MA, ATC. on Apr 19, 2016 9:13:21 AM

Whether it's to improve your fitness or reduce your health risk, creating goals and choosing good health is tough. You will run into obstacles along the way. How you set your goals and how you cope with setbacks will help determine your success. Remember, change takes time. Strive for progression, not perfection.

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Topics: Fitness/activity

I just sprained my ankle: Should I be concerned about re-injury?

Posted by Marielle Gatenby, MA, ATC Certified Athletic Trainer, Ridgeview Rehab Specialties on Apr 13, 2016 1:15:31 PM

AdobeStock_76801345.jpegThe short answer is yes. Research has provided us with a better understanding of the long-term effects of "walking off" an ankle sprain. 

The 2013 National Athletic Trainers' Association position statement: Conservative management and prevention of ankle sprains in athletes, states, "individuals who sustain initial ankle sprains demonstrate high recurrence rates, prolonged symptoms, diminished quality of life, reduced physical activity levels across the lifespan, a propensity to develop chronic ankle instability and an increased risk for ankle osteoarthritis.

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Topics: Fitness/activity

Considering quitting tobacco? A group setting may be right for you.

Posted by Jennifer Jerde, Lead RN, Health Navigator, Ridgeview Delano Clinic on Apr 5, 2016 8:32:53 AM

  • You've been thinking about it for a while, but you are just waiting for "the right time" to quit smoking or chewing tobacco.
  • You know you'll be able to do it when the time is right. Or, you fear you won't be able to, so why even try.
  • Or maybe, you haven't seen any of the harmful effects of tobacco affect you yet, so there's no real motivation to quit.

Do any of these statements sound familiar? These are all comments from participants in Ridgeview's past Quit for Life Group Tobacco classes. I wish I could share with you the magic secret to successfully quitting tobacco. But let's face it, there's no magic secret. Successfully quitting tobacco is a combination of factors including, but not limited to:

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Topics: Wellness

Weight loss help: Ending the two-step shuffle

Posted by Sally Simcox, Therapeutic Coach, Ridgeview Bariatric and Weight Loss Clinic on Mar 30, 2016 11:10:40 AM

How often do you feel that you take two steps forward and one step backward as you try to affect change in your life? Throughout our lives, we fight the battle of weight loss, with the ups and downs, the loss and regain, and it appears to be a never ending cycle.

If you find yourself in a cycle you're familiar with, it may be time to pause and redirect your energy.

Motivational strategies for living our best lives typically begin with "sticks" or "move away from" strategies. Let me give you some examples of what those would look like or sound like:

  • I don't want to be heavy
  • I don't want to be on medications
  • I don't want to die
  • I'm not good enough
  • No one loves me
  • I'm lazy

These are all things we DON'T want and we hope to "move away from" them. The problem with a full-on "move away from" strategy is that you're running from something. This approach takes serious energy, so that the closer you get to your desired outcome, the more exhausted you become from trying to achieve it. If you are able to get to where you want to be with this strategy, there is a high likelihood that you won't be able to sustain or maintain where you are. WHY? Because you no longer carry the sticks that you used to beat yourself up with to get there in the first place. So, you'll end up doing the two-step shuffle. When you slide back, you'll start beating yourself up again in order to get motivated to continue on your journey. Two steps forward, one step back. One step forward, two steps back.

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Topics: Wellness

Metabolism and weight loss: How you burn calories

Posted by Ridgeview Bariatric & Weight Loss Center on Mar 23, 2016 3:04:30 PM

You've probably heard people blame their weight on a slow metabolism, but what does that mean? Is metabolism really the culprit? And if so, is it possible to rev up your metabolism to burn more calories?

Contrary to common belief, a slow metabolism is rarely the cause of excess weight gain. Although your metabolism influences your body's basic energy needs, it's your food and beverage intake and your physical activity that ultimately determine how much you weigh.

Metabolism: Converting food into energy

Metabolism is the process by which your body converts what you eat and drink into energy. Even when you're at rest, your body needs energy for all its "hidden" functions, such as breathing, circulating blood, adjusting hormone levels, and growing and repairing cells.
The number of calories your body uses to carry out these basic functions is known as your basal metabolic rate — what you might call metabolism. Several factors determine your individual basal metabolic rate, including:
  • Your body size and composition. The bodies of people who are larger or have more muscle burn more calories, even at rest.
  • Your gender. Men usually have less body fat and more muscle than do women of the same age and weight, burning more calories.
  • Your age. As you get older, the amount of muscle tends to decrease and fat accounts for more of your weight, slowing down calorie burning.

In addition to your basal metabolic rate, two other factors determine how many calories your body burns each day:

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Topics: Diet and Nutrition

Nine fats to include in a healthy diet

Posted by Ridgeview Bariatric and Weight Loss Clinic Staff on Mar 20, 2016 11:00:00 AM

Fats are often considered the enemy of good nutrition, but when included in a healthy diet, they can boast several potential health benefits. In the September 2014 issue of Food Technology magazine published by the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), contributing editor Linda Milo Ohr described how fatty acids and nutritional oils may benefit cognition, weight management, heart health, eye and brain development, and even mood.

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Topics: nutrition/diet

How much sugar is too much sugar for kids?

Posted by Ridgeview Staff on Mar 18, 2016 12:16:27 PM

Children are active. It’s what they do. But if your child seems overly “hyper,” you may be thinking sugar is the culprit. Some people blame artificial sweeteners or food coloring for their child’s behavioral issues. Is there a proven relationship between sugar and hyperactivity?

Defining hyperactivity

The term hyperactivity refers to certain behaviors:

  • Increased movement
  • Acting impulsively
  • Being easily distracted
  • Shortened attention span

However, these terms are relative to age and circumstances:

  • What is considered normal activity level in children changes as they grow. Toddlers are very active and have a short attention span. 
  • You don’t consider it unusual when your kids zoom around at the playground, but you might if they can’t slow down when it’s time to go to bed.
  • Like adults, a child’s activity level or attention span depend on how engrossed they are in what they are doing.
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Topics: nutrition/diet

Home Air Quality: How to avoid winter allergens and reduce colds

Posted by Barrett P. Larson, II, MD, Ridgeview Specialty Clinic-Pulmonology on Mar 11, 2016 11:00:45 AM

Wouldn’t it be nice if you and your family made it through this winter without a cold? That may be too much to hope for, because colds are common and easily passed around among children and adults. However, there are definitely things you can do to help avoid the common cold. Improving your home air quality is one of them, so here are the answers to some common questions about how to avoid winter allergens and reduce colds.

1. What are some of the health risks associated with a closed environment in a home during winter months, i.e. increased allergens, low moisture, breathing problems?

During winter months, the air in your home can accumulate allergens such as pet dander from pets being indoors more, mold and mildew from areas that are not ventilated well, such as bathrooms and laundry rooms, and increased dust and dust mites, as well as combustible products such as carbon monoxide and smoke from fireplaces, furnaces, stoves, dryers, and water heaters. Secondhand smoke can also become an issue in tobacco users who increase the frequency of smoking indoors during winter months.

Symptoms that can occur/worsen include headache, dizziness, fatigue, itchy eyes, nose and throat, nasal congestion, cough, shortness of breath, wheezing, and bronchitis.

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Topics: Wellness

Winter sports safety: How to prepare for cold weather exercise

Posted by Jessica Hess, MA, ATC, Ridgeview Rehab Specialties on Feb 24, 2016 4:54:40 PM

You don’t have to give up on outdoor exercise just because it’s winter. Minnesota offers plenty of cold weather exercise options. But it is cold out there, so you should be prepared. Follow these tips to participate in winter sports comfortably and safely.

  • Check the weather forecast first. Both moisture and wind matter when it comes to protecting yourself outdoors. If wind chill projections are extremely low or the temperature itself is expected to be below zero, consider indoor exercise instead, especially if you don’t have waterproof gear.

  • Dress in layers. That way, you can adjust by adding or removing clothing according to the weather, temperature and your activity level. Exercising generates heat, which is good. But evaporating sweat steals body heat. So what should you wear?A recent Health eViews blog included suggestions about how to dress for both comfort and your specific activity. Above all, always wear a hat and gloves, and consider investing in something like a pair of YakTrax to improve your footing.
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Topics: Fitness/activity

Medical and health information presented here is intended to be general in nature, and should not be viewed as a substitute for professional advice. Please consult with a health care professional for all matters relating to personal medical and health care issues. In case of an emergency, please call 911. 

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