Any views or opinions presented in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the company. This blog is a unique perspective of one persons journey into fitness. Not all clients and participants at Parsons Training undergo the same training, and each person makes his or her own decisions regarding dietary discretions.
By Steve Sharpton, Parsons Training Center, Tucson, Arizona
June 8, 2017
When you are dealing with strange things in your life, sometimes you have to do some strange things. Take for example one of my favorite subjects in the world, which happens to be music. Every now and then you see some shifts in the music world that forces you to rethink what you believed about certain individuals and groups. Who would have thought the less than average rapper Whitey Ford was a respectable folk-rap storyteller when he morphed into Everlast? Or let’s say you have a band that is getting sick and tired of their lead singer, and decide to get a different lead singer and sound just as good, forcing the deposed lead singer to get his life together (unfortunately for only a short time) to resurge with their best album. This happened to Stone Temple Pilots when they tried to get rid of Scott Weiland and form the catchy (and drugless) Talk Show. The album they made was great, but they had to give their friend a second chance, cuz you know he promised them he would stay clean…which sadly was an affliction he could never beat. Change is sometimes a good thing, for you have to take those leaps to make some thing of yourself. Metallica would not have been the juggernaut they are today if they had not stopped making 8-minute anthems about Vietnam and created the “Black” album. AC/DC would not still be around if they had not taken on an untested performer in Brian Johnson. Heck, we never would have had Moorhead if Lemmy had not pissed off his prior band, Hawkwind. Heck, right now I am listening to a pretty good band called The Horrors, who started out as this gothic/punk/garage/glam rock band that was pretty much pigeon holed into a certain genre and a life of dirty clubs and dive bars. Now they make a more accessible rock sound that is moody and dark at the same time. The lost a ton of fans but gained even more in the process, even getting a best album award from the British version of the Grammys. Anyway, trying some different methods and ideas to enrich your life is necessary from time to time. So how does this apply to me?
Well, like always, my fitness is a constant challenge to my body and my mind. Mostly my body due to the rigors of trying to stay healthy and fit, but this life can also be fairly rough on the mind as well…as you shall see later. Right now, I am going through some changes in the process once again, mainly because I am struggling with everything else in my life. I can’t seem to keep my eating consistent, and I can’t seem to get my butt out on the track for some running. I am still dedicated, for I am still laser focused on just about everything I do whether it be my work or when I help people out. I mean I helped Jon and Christa do some work at their house, and little did I know I spent virtually my entire Sunday at their place, changing out electrical plugs and switches for nearly six hours. I didn’t even notice, mainly because I was not looking at my phone every few minutes and was not watching some movies, which give you a concept of time when viewing. The good thing is I got some sessions out of the deal and some exceptional buckwheat pancakes for lunch. Seriously, I cannot even remember the last time I ate pancakes! So yeah, while I blew up a precious day off (which none of my days off feel like days off anymore), I still did some necessary stuff that will help me out eventually. And it is not like my time will be even more available this upcoming week, for an old friend from Austin is coming in for a good week and a half!
Well, now that I have some sessions coming up once again, I have some work to do. An old problem has cropped up from the distance past, and this time the problem is worse than ever. A couple years ago, I bought the absolute worst shoes I could ever have bought, and they actually ended up injuring my achilles and forced me to start using HOKA shoes, which are not a bad shoe line but is certainly not my type. I eventually healed, but it took some work and some patience on my part. Well, the problem has cropped up again, and now the problem is probably worse than the previous episode. For the past couple weeks, I have had a pain up my right leg that has been originating from my right ankle and basically climbing up my leg. My right ankle has always been an issue for me, for I have injured so many times that I am kind of surprised that I have not injured it in quite a while. You see, sprained and twisted ankles were pretty regular for me, so much so that I pretty much gave up on basketball and never really worked on getting that party f my body stronger. Well, over the last few years since going to Parsons Training, the biggest weakness on my frame is now much stronger than ever. There was actually an instance a few weeks back where I tried doing a clean and jerk and John Shaver told me it look like my ankle was going to roll due to the weird angle it took. But due to the new strength and dexterity of my ankle, it compensated properly and no injuries occurred. Back in the day this would have been a rolled ankle and since I had 135 pounds over my head, possibly some other injuries on top of that. Personally, I have no idea how my ankle started hurting, but the pain started shooting up my leg and now I am getting spasms in my calf. Due to the lack of comfortable seating at work, this problem has been compounded by some tightness in my body, which in term is turning me into a massage therapist and chiropractor’s dream come true. That tightness has been the bane of my existence the last few weeks, making it difficult to run and do just about any physical cardio exercise.
So here is some good advice for you…find a job that allows you to get up and roam around for a bit. Or at least get a job that invests in decent chairs (that is certainly not the case at my job). Every day, there is a threshold for me where I start feeling pain on the bottom of my thighs, forcing me to stand and stretch. I try to stay stretched most of the day but it is kind of a losing battle on most days. And like I said, this is making it tough on my running. Throw in the fact I have been extremely lazy and tired at the time of day I do my running, and it has been an uphill fight for my running sanity. Eventually I will get back to it but it is a matter of will and a matter of wanting to feel better on a regular basis. So what is a guy to do to stop this problem? Well, one of the problems I am running into is the fact I need to start stretching more often, especially with my legs. The main problem area for is this little spot on my calf, and I can feel this little knot forming whenever I take the dogs for a walk or whenever I sit down for a long time. I inspected the back of my knees and the left side looked just fine, but you could tell something is bothered and inflamed on the right as the back that knee is slightly “puffed” up. Now here is the conundrum to my situation. I have a leg that is not getting used enough and I have a leg that is getting tightness because it is being used. So I have been trying me best to maintain a good stretching regimen at work to combat the problem. These are definitely the best ideas I can use at my disposal. http://www.sportsinjuryclinic.net/sport-injuries/ankle-achilles-shin-pain/tight-calf-muscles/stretches-for-tight-calf-muscles I have managed to do a lot of these exercises at work, but the lack of movement in between is certainly making this a tough battle to overcome. If anything, my entire leg is making up the problem.
One thing that was definitely pointed out at my deep tissue massage was the tightness of my IT band, which is starting to become an issue for me once again. A couple years ago, you probably all remembered when I first started running how this became a problem. I was able to do some rolling on my leg to help with the situation, and it is starting look like I will need to do this more often. Often times I focus on my IT bands, but this particular page has some good stuff on it in regards to rolling. http://www.mensfitness.com/training/build-muscle/10-foam-roller-moves-your-entire-body-1 I especially recommend you try to do the lower back rolls, for that has been a lifesaver for me when it comes to making myself feel a little better. My sleep has definitely been affected by my lower back problems, so I will have to start doing this more often. If anything, taking more advanced measure to my tightness is going to be a rather difficult situation for me. My lack of initiative to basic body maintenance needs to stop. I’m going to see I can actually take my hand held roller to work so I can put some work in during the day. But more than anything, I will have to start getting serious with the main foam roller I have at home. Possibly even putting 10-15 minutes a day. I say this because this is getting serious, especially with my running situation.
Now all of this fear about running has not really affected my weight lifting and my flexibility too much. I have still maintain a good regimen in the weight lifting department. I went all “bro” on Monday and seemed perfectly fine from a lifting standpoint. I did a rather usual workout of 50 reps of the dead lifts, bench presses, barbell rows and overhead presses. This week was more of a cardio based idea, but next week I will definitely go for some weight, mainly to see how my body is dealing with the tightness and weather or not I need to make more changes in my life. I also did pretty well when it came to my Olympic training workout on Tuesday night. After doing a really tough WOD that consisted of a ton of burpies and ball slams (which drew the ire of Christa who felt I was dipping low enough on the slams), I did fairly well with my snatch progressions. I was trying a slight higher weight than I normally do, and discovered that I am much better at escaping than more people on Fail Army. John Shaver joked with me that this is a good skill to have going down the line. Either way, with the exception of a couple hiccups, I was doing some good reps on the snatches, managing to keep my feet planted and keeping my balance for much of the time. Now I will not be as good as some other people at local and national weight lifting meets, but at least I am kind of keeping myself moving. I also sought to conquer a little fear within the back of my mind. Lately I have been going light on the back squats to improve my flexibility in that regard. I finally conquered a few fears and went extremely deep, deeper than I have ever been on my squats. Sure, it was only at 165 pounds, but building up that flexibility will be key for me down the line.
Right now, I have to take a lot of things low, and that really frustrates the heck out of me. I hate slowing things down because that means my progress will be hindered and I will not be losing the weight I so desperately looking to get rid of. But like I always preach and will continue to keep preaching is patience. It is something I am not good with myself, for I am sick of looking like a wide body and I am completely frustrated. However, you cannot give up in this endeavor. Not ever. always stay the course and treat your injuries diligently.
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Parsons Training is a Tucson leader in fitness and personal wellness training. Every personal trainer with this company designs and implements effective fitness programs for their clients; these programs serve as the foundation for good health, fitness, and wellness. Additional information about Parsons Training is available at http://www.parsonspersonaltraining.com
Any views or opinions presented in this blog are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the company.
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Steve, a Parsons Training Client, went from 400 pounds to Running half-marathons, from lifting pizzas to lifting hundreds of pounds through training with us.
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