We lose electrolytes when we sweat, and if we lose enough, we must replenish them by drinking fluids (or eating foods) that contain electrolytes. Water does not contain electrolytes. Drinking too much water without replacing those lost electrolytes can actually dilute the sodium in our blood, leading to a potentially dangerous condition called hyponatremia. This is rare but worth mentioning, especially for those who have teenage athletes who may be practicing outdoors this summer.
It’s important to remember, though, that not all workouts will require attention to electrolyte replacement. If you’re exercising for less than an hour or in an air-conditioned gym, plain water is your best choice. After all, eating a well-balanced diet will supply enough electrolytes for most of us. We generally get more than enough sodium and chloride from our diets, and eating your “five a day” of fruits and vegetables will ensure you’re getting sufficient potassium. Sports drinks containing electrolytes can add unnecessary calories and sugar, and are usually only recommended for longer workouts lasting over an hour (for example, if you’re training for a race). Stay hydrated and healthy this summer, WellCats!
EVENT: Climb Out Of The Darkness 2016
EVENT DATE: JUNE 18, 2016
LOCATION: LADY BIRD LAKE
THE STORY: Postpartum Progress’ Climb Out of the Darkness® is the world’s largest event raising awareness of maternal mental illnesses like postpartum depression, postpartum anxiety & OCD, postpartum PTSD, postpartum psychosis, bipolar/peripartum onset, and pregnancy depression and anxiety. Climb Out of the Darkness is held on or near the longest day of the year annually to help shine the most light on perinatal mood and anxiety disorders. The event features mothers and others across the globe joining together to climb mountains and hike trails to represent their symbolic rise out of the darkness of maternal mental illness and into the light of hope and recovery. We can’t wait for Climb Out of the Darkness 2016, to be held Saturday, June 18th at Lady Bird Lake (formerly Town Lake). Mark your calendars! Help us shine the light of hope with our words and our advocacy efforts so that our fellow mothers will receive better information and better treatment, and their new families will get off to the healthy and strong start they deserve. If you have questions or would like to lead or join a Climb or become a Climb sponsor, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Strength training might be new to you, or perhaps you've tried it either on your own or in a class setting, but weren't sure how much you should be lifting. In either case, a good starting point for is to choose a weight that allows you to complete 12-15 repetitions of your selected exercise with good form. Early on, it's important to maintain the same intensity and rep range for a time in order to practice the exercise and master proper technique. Using a modified Rate of Perceived Exertion (RPE) scale of 1 to 10, this movement mastery stage may fall in 5-6 range, where movement can be performed with light speed and moderate force. When in doubt, an instructor or trainer can help coach you to ensure that the movements are being performed correctly. We all start somewhere, so don't hesitate to ask!
As you become comfortable with the exercises and are ready to progress, you can begin adjusting the sets, reps, intensity and/or rest periods. The ACSM's recommendations for progression depend, in part, on your specific goals. Set and rep numbers will vary by type of training, and the above mentioned RPE scale can be used again to help determine how much weight to add. To increase muscular strength, the ability to exert maximal force, a volume of 1-3 sets of 8-12 repetitions is recommended for novice to intermediate exercisers, with an RPE of 7-8 (speed of movement is reduced but is not yet a struggle, and there are still a few reps left "in the tank") and 1-2 minutes rest between sets. More advanced strength training may use 2-6 sets of 1-8 reps, increasing weight to achieve an RPE of 9 or 10 (very challenging, with two to no reps left "in the tank"). For muscular endurance, the ability of a muscle to repeatedly exert submaximal force, recommended rep volumes are higher, at 10-25 reps for 2-4 sets. Work load will be reduced to accommodate higher reps without fatigue, so expect to reduce weight to around a 7 on your previous scale, but rest periods will also decrease to as little as 30 seconds to a minute.
A few key tips for progressing effectively and safely:
Start slowly, and progress slowly, even when you're feeling great. You may be excited to see results, but over-training can actually slow you down. Results come with consistency! When introducing new exercises, reduce your work load as needed in order to master the new movements before progressing to a higher intensity (it's harder to change an incorrect movement pattern than it is to learn it correctly the first time!) Respect the rest period, your body is building new muscle fibers from scratch to meet the new demands you're placing on it, and that takes time! Two days for smaller muscle groups, and 3 days for larger muscles groups is a good rule of thumb, but always listen to your body. To ensure balance, hit every muscle group at least once a week. Ideally, you should incorporate elements of both strength and endurance training into your routine at some point. Always run a new exercise program by your medical care provider to be sure it's safe for you, and don't hesitate seek assistance from a trainer, instructor, or other exercise professional when starting or advancing exercises that are new to you (we love nothing more than to help you get the most out of your work out!) Get fit, stay fit, and have fun!