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The Sequoia Advisor
IN THIS ISSUE November 1, 2009
Trog Says "Lifting Weights is Good"
Stretching Can Save Your Life
November Osteoporosis Support Group Meeting
Take Your Bones and Health to the Next Level
Feel Better... Live Better
Trog Says "Lifting Weights is Good"
by Woody McMahon
Strength Training... The Next "Fountain of Youth"
Lifting weights has always been seen as a "burly man" activity or
something that would give women big, ugly muscles. Recent research
conducted and analyzed by Consumer Reports now suggests weight training
may be the best exercise choice of all. The study of about 9000 people ages
20 to 82 found that those with the greatest arm and leg strength were 25%
less likely to die prematurely than those with the least strength.
Age and Strength
The decline in muscle mass and strength begins as early as age 40.
Significant reduction in strength can be seen between the ages of 50 and
70. Why does this occur? While some age related declines in strength are
attributed to hormonal changes, most strength loss is due to a lack of
physical activity. Sitting at a desk, in a car and on the couch all
contribute to a loss of strength. Fewer hours spent playing sports and jobs
that favor clicking a mouse or picking up a pencil instead of a shovel
contribute to the phenomenon.
Reversing the Trend of the Eighties
The eighties and nineties saw hoards of people walking on treadmills
trying to burn fat and improve their health. The only people in the weight
rooms were athletes and body builders. We now know that lifting weights
is good for all ages. It also offers more overall health benefits than cardio
training and can be done in less time. The study was able to show that
weight training had a positive effect on the strength of the heart,
improving blood sugar levels associated with diabetes, increasing
bone strength and density and reducing stress and increasing mobility.
Big Gains Come From Smaller Weights
Weight training does not have to involve hundreds of pounds of barbells
and elaborate machines. Not everyone needs to lift 300 pounds to improve
their health! The best weight training programs are designed to improve
strength, balance, stamina and flexibility. They incorporate a
cardiovascular strengthening component built into the strength training
program. By modifying the specific group of exercises and the intensity,
your heart rate can either be increased or decreased depending on the need.
They stimulate balance by incorporating one leg lifts and the use of
instability toys like BOSU, toggle boards and half rounds.
Get to the Gym NOW
If you have never lifted weights before, get some professional help to
guide you through the process. By hiring a pro, you'll make it easier to
succeed, see results faster and reduce your chance for injury. Make sure
you learn how to breathe properly; hold your body and the weight in the
correct position; control the speed of the weight for maximum benefits and
make the time to stretch your whole body at the end of every session.
Stretching time leaves your muscles long and ready for the next weight
training session while also helping to reduce stress. Your weight training
is the most important time you will spend at the club.
Not all personal trainers are created equally. If you have special needs then
your trainer should have special training. Contact me to discuss how Fresh Start
can help make the most of your exercise time by building a stronger body the right way. With our program you'll improve balance, strength, flexibility, energy and stamina while feeling and looking your best. Call Woody McMahon at 703-464-5171 to
schedule your free Fresh Start consultation. You can also email to Woody@SequoiaHealth.com.
Stretching Can Save Your Life
by Woody McMahon
Too Much Activity and Not Enough Stretching
Going to the gym is great for your health but not so good for your joints
if you don't get enough stretching time. Activity without proper stretching
increases your risk of getting neck, shoulder, hip, back or knee pain.
Most joint pain can be traced to weak muscles as the result of a sedentary
lifestyle. Pain can also start from inadequate water intake and reduced joint
lubrication (called synovial fluid). Finally, pain can develop from poor
flexibility and tight and shortened muscles.
The Benefits of Stretching
Stretching is the best way to prevent premature deterioration of the cartilage
in your joints. For the cartilage to stay healthy, your joints demand
movement. Inactivity and constant sitting shorten and imbalance muscles
placing abnormal stress on your joints. Stretching helps to lengthen your
muscles allowing them to relax and do a better job. Flexible muscles prevent
narrowed joint spaces, premature cartilage wear and allow your joints to
move freely. Stretching also increases joint range of motion keeping
the joint well lubricated and healthy.
Stretching and Stress
Study after study shows the powerful relaxation benefits stretching can
provide. When done properly, stretching is actually a form of meditation.
You get into the stretch and then hold it for 30 seconds. During that time
you are able to take several deep breaths and let your whole body relax.
Your mind can float and relax at the same time as your body. The deeper
breathing increases oxygen flow to your brain and boosts serotonin
(the feel good hormone) levels.
Stretching Your Shoulders
Shoulders can tighten from too much computer work or a stressful day
at the office. The shoulder joint is a complex joint that is easily injured by
a lack of stretching or activities that are too aggressive for one's conditioning.
Tight and painful shoulder joints can easily become "frozen" ultimately
requiring physical therapy. Here is an excellent shoulder stretch that
works very well to relieve tension.
Towel Stretch: Grab the end of a work-out towel with your right hand.
Lift the towel with your right hand and drape it over your right shoulder.
Take your left hand and grab the other end of the towel. You will have to
turn your arm so that your palm faces away from your back. Once you have
both hands on the towel, walk both hands towards each other on the towel.
When you can't go any further, gently pull up with the right hand to
stretch the left shoulder. Repeat with the left hand for the right side.
A Good Stretch for the Lower Back
There are many reasons why you might experience back pain. However, a
majority of back pain is related to tight hip, back and leg muscles.
The first and best way to help your back feel better is through stretching.
Here is an excellent back stretch that relaxes the hip, leg and back muscles.
Cat and Dog Stretch: Get on your hands and knees with your hands
spread shoulder width and your knees hip width apart. Your head should be
in a neutral position with your face pointed straight down. Without moving
your hands or knees, try and press your belly button towards the floor.
You will need to rock your hips forward to do this and increase the curve
in the lower back. Hold for the count of 10. Now go in the opposite direction
and try and press your belly button towards the ceiling. Your hips must
rock backwards this time. Hold for a count of ten.
Note: If you have been diagnosed with osteoporosis/osteopenia please
be careful with this stretch.
Try these stretches on a regular basis and see how much better your back
and shoulders will feel.
Follow our Fresh Start Healthy Weight! system and you can reduce your weight
and improve your health at the same time. We provide the education, motivation
and accountability necessary to improve your health while helping you feel and look
your best. For a free consultation, please call Woody McMahon at 703-464-5171 or
email to Woody@SequoiaHealth.com.
Osteoporosis Support Group Meeting
"Healthy Bones Come From a Healthy Body" Woody McMahon
Topic: Vitamin D Important to Your Bones and Health
Date: Tuesday November 3rd
Time: 6 to 7 pm
Place: Sequoia Health and Fitness, Inc
483A Carlisle Drive, Herndon, VA
Come dressed in comfortable clothes and bring water. For questions and
reservations please contact Woody McMahon at 703-464-5171 or email to
Be Bone Strong! Program Makes it Possible
Be Bone Strong! is now available online. With the use of Skype, emails, phone calls and the internet, you can benefit from the only complete osteoporosis prevention and repair program. Video consultations, stress reduction activities, healthy eating plans and functional weight bearing programs all available in the comfort of your own home over your computer and telephone.
Be Bone Strong! focuses on reducing fracture risk by helping you change your lifestyle.
Unlike other programs that just focus on medications, calcium and vitamin D to increase
bone density, Be Bone Strong! works to modify ALL the lifestyle factors that help you
increase bone quality.
Our unique three step process makes it easier to improve bone strength faster:
Step 1: Personalized Osteoporosis Lifestyle Assessment
Step 2: Comprehensive "Make My Bones Strong" Plan and Program
Step 3: Implementation Support, Motivation and Consultation
Follow The "Big 5 for Healthy Bones" and you can't go wrong:
1. Dietary changes that balance protein with fruit and vegetable intake.
Fruits and veggies contain greater amounts of water, minerals and antioxidants with generally lesser amounts of animal protein to reduce total body inflammation.
2. Calculate optimum water intake for maximum hydration. Water is very important
in helping the kidneys regulate pH and detoxify the body.
3. Increase daily stress reduction activities. This helps lower cortisol and homocystein
levels while reducing calcium loss.
4. Establish year round vitamin D3 levels in the 50-80 ng/mL (or 125-200 nM/L).
This should be confirmed by regular 25-hydroxyvitamin D testing.
5. Safe and sufficient weight bearing exercise to stimulate muscle growth and balance. This is essential for increasing bone quality and preventing falls.
Test your bone knowledge and take our Strong Bones Healthy Body Quiz at http://sequoiahealth.com/hbquiz_
To learn more about Be Bone Strong! Online or to schedule a free consultation, please go to
http://www.sequoiahealth.com/ and click on Be Bone Strong!
The Sequoia Advisor
Sequoia Health and Fitness, Inc.
483A Carlisle Dive
Herndon, VA 20170
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