January seems to be the time where people are bombarded with ads for weight loss resolutions, getting in shape, and being more active. The new year is a time of health and wellness goals. Often motivation is high for the first few weeks, then life starts to throw curveballs, and slowly the dedication to your goals starts to dwindle. How about taking a different approach to your goals?
While one hat I wear is as a physical therapist, I also wear one as a holistic health coach. When working with clients, the key for me it is to read between the lines and create programs which provide advice that is realistic and attainable. With any program, be realistic as to how much you are willing to give with respect to time. Start small and add in time on days that you have it. I recommend 5 minutes a day and increase as able. Can you move your body for 5 minutes? Can you do this a few times a day? Studies have shown that being active throughout your day is key for wellness and health. Start to think about how you can achieve those 5 minutes. Some examples are: using the bathroom on a different floor, parking further away (and not be angry about the parking so far away), taking the stairs or walking an extra loop in the parking lot. I am a gadget girl, so setting a number of steps a day on a pedometer was extremely helpful in motivating me on days where I would rather relax. The buzz on my wrist provided me an instant feedback and smile to my face.
This brings me to my next recommendation: outlook. I believe if you walk or run the same distance with the same pace in an angry versus happy state, the body will respond differently. Positivity gives you better results. A great way to gain positivity is by being grateful. You've seen it on Facebook and TV; gratitude journals and posts are popping up everywhere. If you can be positive in your movement and grateful for what you are able to do, your body can sense this by an increase your endorphins. An increase in endorphins will increase your motivation. Remember, breathing is an activity, so even on the most painful or tired days, focus on your breath for 5 minutes finding gratitude in being able to just breathe.
Lastly and most importantly, sleep is key to wellness. I often hear clients doing "all the right things" but sleeping very little. Getting to bed late and waking up early means the body has little time to recover. Ideal bedtime is to be asleep by 10pm. To help your body regulate sleep, it is recommended to go outside in the early morning for as little as 5-10 minutes. You can be still, walk or exercise, but do not wear sunglasses for at least 5-10 minutes. The pineal gland in the brain helps to regulate sleep and is sensitive to the spectrum of color, especially the colors in the hours of dawn. The hue in the dawn helps to regulate the pineal gland, which can help you regulate to an earlier time to bed. It is hard to parent yourself, but think about it... keep active, stay positive (laugh and smile more) and get to bed early are what we tell children... why not ourselves??
To further help you meet your wellness goals, check our website and Facebook posts as we will be hosting workshops throughout 2016 to help inspire and motivate you!
Elizabeth Leeds, PT, DPT
It's a new year. Let's resolve to move easier and better! Having a hard time moving? Then change the way you move! Discover new muscles. Try new activities. Think about your ordinary routine movements - or lack of movement - such as sitting and sleeping. What can you change about how you sit at your desk, read a book, cook in the kitchen, and sleep.
About a month ago, I eagerly signed up for the pre-sale of biomechanist Katy Bowman's Diastasis Recti, book. She is the bestselling author of Move Your DNA, which turned my thought process upside down. Since reading Move Your DNA, I no longer believe that exercise and manual therapy alone can heal a musculoskeletal injury. Daily monotonous movements need to be addressed also! If you are suffering from diastasis recti, check in with your physical therapist and check out Katy's book.
"Setting up the symptom as 'the problem' ignores the bundle of habits and habitats that led to the symptom in the first place." Katy Bowman, Diastasis Recti, pg 12.
Small movements/activities that are helpful to change:
* If you always read leaning on your right arm, change to leaning on your left
* Sleep with one less pillow. You might need to start one night per week and build up to permanently needing one less pillow.
* Sleep on your other side
* Walk barefoot every now and then
* Change the type of shoe you wear often
* Hang from monkey bars
* Breathe through your diaphragm
* Keep your rib cage down
* Decrease the size of heel on your shoe
* Vacuum the floor starting in a different corner
* Don't lean on the counter when brushing your teeth
It's the New Year, take advantage of any of the exciting fitness oriented discounted programs out there! Let your body and soul move in new ways. Try a hip hop class, ballet, barre, new style of yoga, spin class, kayak, stand up paddle board, surf, boogie board, hike in a new spot, or try Pilates at CTS! And if you need help identifying specific movements to modify, see a physical therapist at CTS and we will get you moving.
Crystal Hazelton, PT, OCS
creating power through movement
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plays a meaningful role to the members of our CTS family. We strive to do our part to provide top notch education and information.
Cindy Furey - Teaches at St. Augustine and San Diego State University
Crystal Hazelton - Blogs on pelvic floor with post-partum issues
Mandy Johnston - Teaches core activation at Mesa College PTA program. - Presents using Pilates for rehab at San Diego District Chapter Meeting for the APTA
Elizabeth Leeds - Teaches pregnancy/post-partum topics at the YMCA
Maureen Mason-Cover - Clinical trial on Diastasis Recti intervention
Comprehensive Therapy Services focuses on great traditions to heal, educate and empower patients, family and friends. Take advantage of our programs to help you meet your wellness goals.
Take advantage of our Pilates classes and private instruction, Massage and Acupuncture - what a combination to help you meet your health and fitness goals! Check out our class calendar - CLICK HERE»
CTS also offers Mindful Meditation with Jim Cahill. During these sessions, Jim will work with you to enhance your physical and emotional well being while teaching you techniques you can use for self practice. For more information, CLICK HERE»
As always, the therapists and staff at CTS strive to offer you the best Physical Therapy in town. We promise to provide the most up to date treatment techniques. Let us empower you to make NOW your time to shine!
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5677 Oberlin Drive,
San Diego, Ca 92121