Winnipeg Free Press Newspaper Archives Aug 15 2015, Page 91

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Winnipeg Free Press (Newspaper) - August 15, 2015, Winnipeg, Manitoba C M Y K PAGE D16 If pinched for time during the summer, a cardio workout such as running can easily be squeezed in. intersection pulse SATURDAY, AUGUST 15, 2015 A S I walk through the Pembina valley, in the shadows cast by wind- rushed clouds, I take a look around me and realize how many active people are out and about on even the less- than- perfect of days. Today, I’ve been doing yardwork, several renovations around the house and have already washed the truck. While my mother would tell me that was a workout in itself ( she thinks my mind is gone if I throw in a weight session after a full day of labour), I know my workout goals deserve more of a challenge and treating physical activity and exercise equally should be unheard of. While both physical activity and exercise are extremely important to our health and well- being, there is a significant difference. Classically, exercise is actually a subset of physical activity. The latter is defined as “ any bodily movement produced by the contraction of skeletal muscle which results in an increase in energy expenditure.” This includes anything from walking across the room to winning an Ironman race. Exercise, however, refers to “ planned, structured, and repetitive bodily movement performed with the goal of improving one or more components of physical fitness.” During the summer months, exercise is deleted from many people’s routines in favour of yardwork, dogwalking, and waterskiing — and who can blame you? In our bitter northern climate, we should cherish heat and sunshine as though they’re our most precious resources. We should enjoy the weather and be productive around the yard, but we shouldn’t always sacrifice “ the workout” for weed- pulling. The difference is focus. While most people consider themselves more active in the warmer months, physical activity generally focuses on the task at hand — cleaning the gutters, or putting away the groceries; with calorie expenditure and technique/ body positioning as distant afterthoughts. For this reason, we see a significant influx of patients with lifestyle injuries, because they have abandoned their winter workout routine — a workout where the focus is you, and how well you complete the task at hand. Your back, shoulders and knees take a beating when your sole form of physical activity is... physical activity. MOVE IT, DON’T LOSE IT Physical activity is good for your well- being, but don’t sacrifice harder workouts BY TIM SHANTZ W HEN Alexa Kovacs first started throwing around a Frisbee in high school, she had no idea of how far it would lead her. This week, Kovacs is competing with her Fusion teammates for a national title at the Canadian Ultimate Championships, which is currently being held in Winnipeg. “ I’d been playing only a few months and I was at nationals,” Kovacs said of when she was asked to join her high school team. “ I just kind of jumped in with both feet when I started.” She says she could run and catch when she started. She was athletic, but had no real Ultimate skills. Kovacs says times have changed in that regard. Players are now expected to know how to make good throws, have good understanding of the game and possess a strong athletic background. Kovacs, who heads up her team’s practices, says fitness is a big part of the game and for the team which works out three times a week. “ Players are strongly encouraged to do training on their own,” she said. “ I like to allocate time at the end of our practices for conditioning — running and strength training — and I like to have a practice once a week most focused on that sort of thing. We put a big emphasis on it.” Kovacs says she’ll play Ultimate until she doesn’t feel like she can be a solid contributor anymore. At that point, she’d like to become a coach — a person she wishes her team had at the moment. “ The sport as a whole is not quite yet consistent with having coaches on the team, the sport is just so young still and a lot of the players are still playing,” she said. “ We’ve been open to it for years, and I’d appreciate it so I could just focus on being a player. And I know the team would appreciate it.” Kovac says she would want to coach junior- age level players. “ They’re the future of this team, they’re us in five years, and if we don’t develop them at this level it’s hard to make plans for the future,” she said. “ Someday, I’d love to me more involved in the junior program. It’s about giving back and it’s rewarding.” scott. billeck@ freepress. mb. ca Avoid summer setbacks Don’t omit workouts: I don’t want to be stuck in a gym anymore than you do on a beautiful summer day. Take a yoga mat, dumbbells and tubing outside and do a quick total- body workout that focuses on correct technique and movement. Interval training can increase the density of the workout; using your time wisely. Use the 50/ 50 rule of thumb: if, during the winter, you work out four times a week — aim for twice- aweek workouts that are only half as long. In a pinch, opt for cardio: Cardiovascular exercise is easy to do in the summer months, but instead of always making it a leisurely walk, try and instill exercise focus by timing the run/ bike/ walk/ roller blade. My personal favourite is a negative- split, out- and- back route. Pick a destination and time how long it takes you to get there. Retrace your exact route on the way back, but attempt to do it in less time. Don’t have enough time? Do a few hill runs to increase the intensity of a short workout. Add focus to physical activity: Some chores can become a workout if you create variables that you can control. Take raking for example; instead of raking slowly and continuously for two hours without worrying about your form, add intensity to the movement. Rake vigorously for 40 seconds, followed by 20 seconds of rest, and repeat this 10 or 20 times. Focus on your movements ( with raking — your knee bend, back angle, and then the rowing movement with the rake) to simulate exercise while still being productive. Knowing and understanding the difference between physical activity and exercise is an important step towards maintaining workouts, which many people lose sight of over the summer. While physical activity is an important part of overall well- being, it should not always be a substitute for regularly scheduled exercise. While the weather is nice, modify and moderate your workouts so you can better enjoy the weather, yard, family and friends. Tim Shantz is a certified athletic therapist and personal trainer. You can reach him at tim@ mordenphysiotherapy. ca. D16 training basket BY SCOTT BILLECK JOHN WOODS / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS Alexa Kovacs, who plays Ultimate for Fusion, practices at Assiniboine Park. Her team is competing in the Canadian Ultimate Championships this week in Winnipeg. Favourite workout: I have to be in a big group of people doing training together. Some cross training. Sports is my way of training. Favourite workout song: Rap or hip- hop, something upbeat. Fitness tip: For Ultimate, make sure you’re doing cross training for both sides of your body. The sport is very asymmetrical; everything is done largely the same way, so making sure you’re working the other side is crucial. What’s in your fridge: Chicken and corn, fresh foods for dinner, milk, yogurt and fruits and vegetables. Guilty pleasure: Just chocolate in general — if it’s in my home it’s not there for very long. MIKE DEAL / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS D_ 16_ Aug- 15- 15_ FF_ 01. indd D16 8/ 13/ 15 5: 39: 16 PM

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