An Elite Personal Training Facility That Puts You First
PEX Health and Fitness Newsletter
Updates from the Twilight Zone
I hope this week's edition of our Newsletter finds you well, that you're getting into a groove at home, and that you're feeling good about the prospects of the economy opening up relatively soon (fingers crossed).

If you're anything like me, you cannot wait to get things moving -- Groundhog Day was a funny movie, but actually living it? Not so much. (At least in the movie, crowds could gather to see if Punxustawney Phil saw his shadow. Also, Punxustawney is one of the hardest words I have ever spelled in my life.)
Being the overly optimistic chap that I am, I am hopeful that PEX will be able to open, in a reduced capacity, around mid-May. In the coming weeks, we will be formulating a concrete "in-the-gym protocol" for both trainers and clients to follow, in conjunction with the recommendations given to us by the government, for our (not so) Grand Re-Opening. I will disseminate that protocol to everyone as our opening date gets closer. It's not every day I get to use the word disseminate in conversation, you know, so I hope we can all savor this moment together.
This Week's Coach Spotlight!
The following is brought to you by Shawn Sprague, Head PT at OrthoSportsMED in Needham, MA.

Hi All! Checking in from sunny Rhode Island. I wanted to talk to you about an aspect of our training and conditioning programs that I think a lot of people are overlooking: joint specific mobility and training for adequate control through full ranges of motion.

We all know the muscular, neuromuscular, and endocrinal benefits associated to quality strength and flexibility training. But what if I told you that traditional strength training and flexibility work wasn’t enough?

As a physical therapist for the past 8+ years, it is my belief that most people are missing joint specific mobility. And no, flexibility and mobility are not the same thing. Just because you can get there, doesn't mean it's going to end well. Having adequate mobility means that you can control the range of motion that your flexibility allows you to achieve.

Here's an example: Let’s say you can touch your toes. Great! But can you reach down to your shoes, brace your abs, keep your spine flexed with appropriate tension, and tie your shoelaces, without blowing your back out? This, my fitness friends, is the difference between mobility and flexibility.

It is my belief that a lack of mobility, and the subsequent inability to control range of motion, is what separates people who are constantly injured, and those who are not.

In order to understand what I am talking about in further detail, we have to go over three important concepts: 

1) The Law of Specificity.
2) Length-Tension Curves.
3) Strength-Velocity Curves. 

Just kidding. You can look those things up if I have piqued your interest (it is pretty cool stuff and actually pretty intuitive). Instead, I will do you a favor and summarize it all for you.

In order to facilitate a system that effectively and efficiently prevents injury, you have to train your muscles and joints in the positions where they are the most likely to get hurt!

And, as you can probably guess, you are most likely to get hurt in the positions where your muscles are the weakest and where your joints are the most poorly leveraged -- the beginning and end range of motion in a joint.

What other health benefits, aside from injury prevention, does this type of training facilitate? Well, unlike all other tissues in our bodies, our joints and articular cartilage have no direct blood supply. Instead, they receive oxygen and nutrition, and get rid of waste byproducts, through the movement and diffusion of the connective tissue surrounding it. Therefore, if you cannot move your joints through full ranges of motion, your joints will be deprived of adequate nutrition. A lack of adequate nutrition can lead to premature deterioration (arthritis). The key takeaway? Joint health depends on adequate movement! 

About a year ago, I attended a “Functional Range Conditioning” course, and a follow-up course known as “Kinstretch.” This was when my view of the fitness and rehabilitation world completely changed. Since then, I have been exposing my clients and physical therapy patients to this type of training, with tremendous improvements.

This type of training is certainly not an “end-all-be-all” system, but I think it is definitely a much-needed complement to traditional strength training. I have tweaked the program considerably, based on my advanced rehab and physical therapy background, and those tweaks have allowed me to teach these movements to clients and patients of all fitness levels.

Before the shutdown, I was running about 4 small group classes a week at PEX in a program I founded called Progressive Mobility. Since then, I have pivoted to a virtual setting, and it has been extremely successful. The best part about this type of training is that you do not need any equipment. All you need is a yoga mat and your body, and you will be more than able to train in a way that strengthens your muscles, improves your joint mobility, increases usable ranges of motion, improves body control, and decrease injuries! 

Want to try a (free) Progressive Mobility Class?
Sign up for our class on Thursday at 6 PM
Reach out to me via text (401) 829-2784, or EMAIL ME.

Thank you for your time! 
Yes, this is Mike running.
No, Mike is not participating.
What : The PEX VIRTUAL 5K is open to anyone -- runners, walkers, friends and family. Our version of a virtual race means that by registering, you’re committing to 3.1 miles. Whether this means running a route near your home, or hitting up the treadmill in your basement, how you do it is up to you. The only "rule" is that you complete the 3.1 miles safely, and according to recommended precautions.
When: The race will kick off at 9 AM on Sunday May 31st. We will have a 20 minute virtual Zoom warm-up hosted by ANM Strength's Ashley Means starting at 8:30. You then have 10 minutes for any last minute needs and then we will start our run together on Strava at 9 sharp!

How: Everyone will be tracking their 5K on Strava (it's a user-friendly app that tracks your distance and time). We recommend you map out your 5K route ahead of time to make sure you complete all 3.1 miles, as well as practice using the Strava app. (Strava works with treadmills, too.) All entries (a screenshot of your finished Strava run) must be submitted to Ashley Means by 12:00 am on Monday June 1st. Winners will be announced on Monday!

Winners: There will be a 1st, 2nd and 3rd place winner in both male and female categories. First place receives a $100 gift card to Perform Better (for your in-home gym). Second place receives a PEX hat and third place receives a PEX water bottle and speed jump rope.

Registration: Registration opens Tuesday April 21st- Tuesday April 28th. Cost is $35 and includes your 2x/week running program leading up to raceday.
To register email Ashley Means.
Saturday Morning Interval Class!
Saturday Morning Interval Class
With Ashley Means, Owner of ANM Strength

Got plans Saturday morning(s)? Probably not. (Neither do we.) If you're up for a challenge, hop into Ashley's Saturday morning interval class! All you need is a bike, rower, or treadmill, and a telemedicine note from your doctor. (Just kidding. Kind of.)

When : 9 AM
Where : your own home!
How : Email Ashley to get your Zoom ID
** Donations are welcome via Venmo @Ashley-Means **
To send cash and diamonds
1451 Highland Avenue,
Needham, MA 02492