Hey everybody! Andrew, EarthFIT coach here, bringing you the Calf Stretch. We’re going to have two muscle groups that we’re stretching here. The gastrocnemius and soleus.
Two muscles are very responsible for a lot of things – foot movement, ankle movement, and a lot of causation of knee pain. So let’s come over here.
At home you’re going to grab a step or a wall. They don’t mind getting dirty. Unless you take your shoes off. They’re going to come over to your step or your wall. You can put your foot, the ball of your foot up on that wall, or step toes up to the ceiling. And you’re actually going to keep your knees straight and hands on the hips forward, putting a little bit of pressure down on the ball of your foot, allowing that calf the back of the leg to stretch. This is the gastrocnemius stretch here.
Then the soleus stretch. All you do is bend your knee towards your toe and hinge forward. You automatically feel a slightly different area stretching, maybe even the Achilles tendon, which is always good. Hold for 30 seconds minimum each stretch, breathe and relax and allow that muscle to stretch. If you fight the stretch, you’re not going to get the results you’re looking for. Relax that muscle group, hold that stretch and relax it. Breathe for 30 seconds at the minimum, maximum of 2 minutes per muscle group, you’re going to be well on your way. Do it twice a day morning when you wake up, evening when before you go to sleep and definitely mobility work from the knees downward before you work out, I’ll see you guys later.
Hey everybody! Andrew here, coach at EarthFIT. I’m here to address the elephant in the room that we all are experiencing every single day, whether we know it or not – joint pain, whether it’s an injury 15 years ago, whether it’s sitting there just popped up yesterday or something that we may get into later on as you may start feeling sciatica, headaches, shoulder pain, rotator cuffs are all messed up, ACL’s, MCL’s, knee pains, plantar fasciitis in the feet, whatever it may be low back pain in general, I’m here to tell you I put together a series of videos coming up on how to get stretching at home, how to work on your mobility at home so that we can start the process. Start it, start the process of feeling better and getting a better quality of life and better posture, better technique when we’re coming in here, working on our fitness.
Repetitive movements and postures all day – Am I doing texting, computer work, golfing, fishing, standing up, moving boxes, whatever, whatever it may be playing with our grandkids, sleeping. We have bad postures throughout the entire day, all day, 24 hours a day, repetitively causing overactive muscle groups to pull on the joint improperly causing really bad joint mechanics because on the other side of that joint is going to be the opposing antagonistic muscle group 9 times out of 10, that is weakened and lengthened. So if they’re not getting the neuro drive in the activation and the strength and the stability it needs along with other things, this is a very basic explanation. And the other side of that joint is overactive in tight and pulling too much. Your joint mechanics are going to be off, your joint alignment is going to be off. You’re going to have pain. You’re going to be pressing down on nerves, soft tissues. You’re going to be pulling on tendons and improperly moving those tendons and ligaments causing sprains and strains and micro tears. Not going to be good, this is not going to get better if you don’t do anything about it. So watch my videos coming up on the content. I’ll see you guys in here for more strength and conditioning, more fitness, more health and more motivation. Let’s go.
This is a get up exercise. I want to show you guys today, very beneficial for anybody. One of the biggest factors of all-cause mortality is being able to get up and off the ground. And this is going to teach you how to get up and off the ground without using your hands. So very simple, you’re going to find… You don’t necessarily need a couch or a pillow. It would be a lot more comfortable. I’m going to show you both on the stability pad and off the stability pad today.
So simply starting out, you just get on both knees like this, you raise one leg up here and then the other, and you stand up very, very simple. That would be the most basic version of the exercise. If you did have something to put your knees on. You can, this is just purely for comfort. It’s not really affecting the exercise. If you do have a stability pad, you can stand on and make it a little bit more difficult, but this is generally just for pure comfort.
So how to make it a little bit more difficult is you would raise the hand up of… Like that you’re going to step forward with. So in this case, I have my left hand up. I’m going to step forward with my right, and I just want to look at my fingertips the whole time, step up and then up the other way, and then do the same thing on the way down here. Look up, lunge down, back to the other leg. If that becomes too easy for you, you can try the opposite arm, opposite leg. That would be contralateral movement. That’s going to be a little bit more difficult, that would be kind of the last progression of this here.
So to recap, just start going from the floor to knees, just hands in front of you stepping up, lunging back, stepping down when that becomes too easy. You, same arm, same leg, this case, it’s my left. And then if that becomes too easy, you can switch arms and do more of a contralateral step up there. So that is the step up. Another way you can progress is to add weight in the hand. You want to make sure you’re keeping that shoulder perfectly straight though. So that is a great exercise for long-term health and stability.
This is the single leg toe touch, very simple exercise here, very effective though. Okay. So what we want to do is we either want to find a box or a step up that you can step up onto, or whether it’s a step. Now let’s say you don’t have anything, any of those… I’m going to show you what to do first, and then I’ll show you what to do if you do have a box. Okay. So Single Leg Step Up to Toe Touch. It’s going to look like this if we don’t have anything, okay. You’ll actually drop down into a, like a reverse lunge here. So you drop one leg back and then you’re going to come up out of that and raise that knee up, keep that knee raised, and then you want to slightly bend and just reach down for your toes. Just like this.
Now let’s say that’s too advanced. You’re falling all over the place, doing that. To regress that, you can find a wall or anything like a countertop that you can grab a hold of, right like this. And you can practice both movements. You can practice going down here, coming up, kind of balancing like that. You can also then practice leaning down just like this kind of walking down the wall there.
Remember when you’re lowering yourself in that movement, it’s actually the hips that are lowering you. So that’s kind of how you could regress that if you didn’t have a step or a step or something like that available to you, or maybe it’s just too difficult for you to do on a step, start out utilizing the ground. And if the ground is still too tough for you, utilize a wall.
Now, how you do it. If you had a box or a step up, or I’ll just use this stability pad here, I would just step up on it. Raise my leg up, try to hold for 3 seconds or so, come down, reaching down here. Again, the same movement come up and do about 3-5 on each side, and then you would switch legs there on that step up. So again, you would step up, raise the leg, come down, just like that, just holding each position there. So that’s a single leg step up to a toe touch. It’s a great exercise for your stability and long-term health.
I’m gonna teach you guys the ins and outs of doing a McGill airplane. So why do you want to do this exercise? It is great for core stability. It’s very difficult to do one. There is a regression that I’m going to show you guys.
So first I’ll just show you the regression. So this is where most of you should be starting out. Okay. You’re going to balance on one foot here, be about a hand length away. Easy enough to where you lean forward. You can put both palms against the wall because that’s eventually what you’re going to do in this. So we want to stand on one leg here. You’re going to reach forward to the wall here, you’re going to reach back here. Now I’m just having a light, a bit of pressure here on the wall. From there, I’m going to open my hips up. I’m moving from the hips here, I’m not moving from my shoulder blades or anywhere else moving from my hips. And I’m just trying to open up to one side as far as I can. Once I can do that, I’m going to twist and go the other way. Now, when I’m doing this, I’m actually pushing my hip down. I’m pushing it down here. You’ll feel good stretch there. You want to push until it goes as far as you can go. So that’s the regression of the exercise. That’s really good for warming up and your core stability overall.
The next version of it, the more advanced version would be just doing it without any, any support with the wall. This is pretty difficult for most. So you want to grab again, just balance on one foot here, kick it back. Now again, I’m going to put my arms out by the side here, but I’m strictly moving from my hips, all my chest to come parallel to the floor here. Then I’m going to open up to one side. My arms will move, but I’m moving from the hips. Again, try not to fall over here. It’s going to challenge foot stability. And then we will go to the other side.
This is again called a McGill airplane, very difficult, phenomenal warm up exercise and one that you can incorporate into your daily life for improved stability in the core. And then some of the hips.
All right today, I’m going to go over the bird dog. It’s also known as a Quadruped. This is a phenomenal core stability exercise, one that is fantastic for long-term health as well. So starting position here, and I’m going to show you the easiest version. There’ll be three versions of I’m going to show you guys today. First will be the easiest version. Almost anybody should be able to do this one, a second will be a little bit more difficult for those that have been practicing for a little bit. And then the third will be for the most advanced, and that will be a little bit more difficult. And then I’ll throw in a bonus one as well. So we’ll actually get 4 versions today.
I’m gonna start with the easiest version here would be hands right under the shoulder blades here. We’re just going to kick one leg back and reach out with one arm. This right now… I’m reaching out with my hand and back with my leg, notice I’m not coming up with both of them. They are raising up, but I’m actually reaching out. And what we’re trying to do here is to keep the hips square to the floor is going to challenge your core. Then you would come back to the starting position and go the opposite direction. What we want to look for here is any imbalances.
If that becomes too easy for you, you can do just a little bit of variation here, reach out and then when I reach out, I come back in elbow to knee, and then I reach back out, that’s going to be a little bit more difficult there. So if I get really proficient at those and really good at those and they become easy, doing ten of them no, not dipping my hips and keeping them square to the floor. It’s relatively easy. I’m not breaking a sweat, we can go to a more advanced version, which would be from the hands and feet.
Now I do recommend starting out this advanced version against the wall. And this is my little bonus tip for today. So before you go full on bird dog or quadruped, you want to actually, you can use the wall as a support here to kind of help stabilize you. So the answer right under the shoulders here, you’re going to reach out in front of you to a wall, push it into the wall and then reach back here. And then you would hold for a few seconds and then back down.
Now, once that becomes easy for you, you could do the full bird dog version or quadruped version which would be hands around the shoulders, standing up tall. You’re going to reach out. Again, I’m reaching this way. I’m kicking back here, stabilizing, trying to keep my hips square and then back down. And then I’ve reached the other side, just like that. Again, that’s a bird dog also known as the quadruped, phenomenal exercise for your core stability, hip stability, and just overall health and longevity.
“You have questions? Hopefully I have the answers. In today’s Q and A, I want to go over a question I received from a member. They were asking, what should I do on the days that I’m not working out?… They said they typically go running or they’ll do a beach-body Shaun T style, higher intensity workout but they often feel tired or depleted afterwards, what should they do in that instance?
All right. So I’m going to get right into it. I’ve answered kind of, or hinted around this before, but I’m just going to come out and be very blunt about it today. Cardio is not going to take you to your fat loss goal if that is your goal is to lose fat. I don’t know specifically if that’s what they’re trying to achieve. So you always have to start your training, whatever program you’re going in with a clear, defined goal. And that needs to be communicated to the coach, to whoever. At EarthFIT, when somebody comes in, they sit down with me, they communicate their goal; that’s part of the process. I then tell their coaches their goals, and then we use the best scientific principles to get you to your goals. So with training specifically, I’ll just talk about fat loss because that’s typically the goal everybody’s looking to achieve.
First thing to know, you’re not going to outwork poor nutrition. Nutrition is going to play the largest role by far hands down, for fat loss. So if you’re looking to lose fat, you have to dial in your nutrition. Doing extra workouts is going to do nothing for you. It’s actually going to hurt you because it’s going to slow down your metabolism. Now, if your goals are to put on more muscle which also helps burn fats, then your off training days would look like one or two things.
(1) Either work on mobility because that mobility is thing and transfer over when you go into the gym to better performance, better strength gains.
(2) You could focus on sending a small muscle building signal, not too large of a signal to facilitate recovery, and then more muscle building growth. So what those workouts typically look like are short 10 minute. I like to use resistance band workouts, and you just do small movements like squats, you could do curls. If you’re trying to go for more of your arms, really, whatever body part you’re specifically trying to go after, or build up would be the one that I would suggest you target in those small mini workouts. Now, with those workouts, you do not want to overdo it. You keep the moderate intensity. You do like a five out of 10 on the intensity level. You’re just trying to again, send a small muscle building signal, facilitate some recovery so those muscles can grow. You’re sending the signal that says, “Hey, we need to get stronger”.
Now I’m going to talk about why running and things like that are not beneficial if you’re trying to get fat loss. So in here, we’re already doing enough cardiovascular activity to stimulate fat oxidation, build up your aerobic capacity. So that physiological adaptation is already covered by the training you’d be doing in EarthFIT. Running outside of here really also it’s going to do is slow down your metabolism, in my opinion. If you’re consistently already training 2-3 days a week, it’s just going to slow down your metabolism. You may see good weight loss for the first, you know, month or two, but after that, your risk of injury is going to increase dramatically. And it can slow down your metabolism because what happens is you run, that’s an endurance style activity or you do like a high intensity workout – those are all telling your body “We don’t want more muscle. We want to pare that down. We need to get lighter.” So it’s going to shed both… The studies will show typically when you run, you’re losing 50% muscle, 50%, fat. So really what happens is your body fat percentage actually goes up because you weigh let’s say you drop 10 pounds. 5 of that is muscle, 5 of that is fat. Well, now you’re actually in a lighter weight, and you still have a high body fat, your body fat percentage actually goes up because you took down the muscle that you previously had with it as well.
So I hope this clarifies things basically to summarize, if you’re training here at EarthFIT, I would recommend do mobility or a small muscle building workout. There are times and places to do more endurance training, but if you’re going for fat loss, that’s not going to take you there. Instances where you’d want to do more endurance is where you’re going to actually do it in endurance style events. So if you’re training for some type of race, or if you’re training to really just build up a better aerobic base, then that’s fine. Just understand it’s not going to take you specifically to fat loss if that’s your goal.
All right. I hope this clarifies things. I know there’s a lot of little long with it as usually when I get into the cardio topic, but that is all for today. Hope you found value in this video. If you did, give me a thumbs up. If you love it, give me a heart and as always stay strong.”
Beaufort Health and Fitness: Exercise Prescription
“Hey everybody! I wanted to go over a topic today. It seems like whenever people are getting into fitness, they either fall on one side of the spectrum. It’s either they don’t like to work out at all. They like to sit on their couch or they like to hammer themselves into oblivion working out seven days a week. And people are always asking me, you know, what is the right amount for your body? How do you get the best results the fastest? And I just want you guys to give, take this simple image. Whenever we’re trying to solve a problem through fitness, which a lot of times can be obesity or maybe it’s chronic joint pain, or really any of the issues that you get involved in to working out for. You have to remember that it’s a lot like a prescription from a doctor.
So whenever you go to the doctor and you have some type of issue and they prescribe you some type of medication or other treatment, too little of that treatment is not going to do anything. Too much of it is going to cause an overdose, right? You can certainly die from taking too much prescription medication. The same thing goes with fitness. Now you’re not going to die typically if you work out too hard, but you’re not going to get the results. You’re going to overdose your body. You’re going to stress it out to the point where it’s not burning fat. It’s not doing the things you want it to. It’s not really reaching towards your goals, but at the same time, if you don’t, if you do too little, it’s not going to do anything either. So then the question is, well, what’s in it for me, or how long do I have to do this? What is it that I can do to hit my goals? How long do I have to go?
Really, it’s going to depend on each situation. And that is why the value of having a coach is so important.
So that’s kind of what I wanted to leave you guys with today is it’s really individualized. However, remember it’s like a prescription just because more, you’re doing more does it mean you’re going to get more results? When you do very little, it doesn’t mean you’re going to get any results either. So keep those thoughts in mind whenever you’re thinking about your fitness, your goals… that is all for today as always stay strong.”
“Hey everybody! Today, I’m going to go over an excellent stretch you could do before training or before really any of your daily life, especially this is really great. If you have knee pain or if you have shin splints, anything like that. Before we get into it, I want to describe two things for you so we can really get the most benefit out of this stretch.
(1) First, whenever we’re thinking about stretching out, dealing with knee pain, shin splints, anything below the foot, we really want to think about the foundation that we’re standing at. Sometimes even hip pain can be a result of immobility in the ankle or the foot. So this stretch is really going to stretch out that ankle and help anything up your kinetic chain. A lot of times injuries even to the shoulder can be simply caused by immobility in the foot. So if you’re dealing with any of those issues, this may also be a great stretch for you.
(2) Second thing I want to discuss is the intent. So the intent, in which you do this stretch, how hard you push yourself is going to determine the results you’re going to get. You can passively go through this, or you can listen to the little cues and really push yourself. If you do that, you’ll get a great benefit.
So before I get into the actual stretch, it’s always important to test and then retest yourself to see if anything has actually changed whenever we’re trying to stretch out or mobilize a joint. So the first thing that we’re going to do is we’re going to test the ankle here. We’re going to take a thumb, stick out your thumb here. You’re going to find a wall here, and you’re going to put your big toe at the back of your hand. So your thumbs against the wall like that (please see the video), this should be about four inches or so away from the wall. Now, what you want to do is you want to drive your knee into the wall without lifting your heel. If you have very stiff ankles, like my left ankle here is relatively stiff, it’s going to be very difficult to get it there without lifting the heel up. So if you can’t get it there, that’s okay. Just go as far as you can, you can see, I can’t quite get it there right now. So that’s what you would do initially to test your flexibility. If you can’t hit it against the wall, that means you have tight ankles. So then what do you do?
I’m gonna show you a very simple stretch here. You can find a box where or you could do this on a step at your house, really anything. Um, you’re gonna elevate your foot here., kind of take a split stance position. I like having something that I can grab in front of me to kind of pull me forward. But what you’re going to do is you’re going to put a lot of pressure here with your left hand, push the knee forward here from this position you want to push, really push your knee forward. And then when you get to the very end, you’ll start to feel a little pinching or tightness when you feel that push forward and then lift your toes, trying to lift your toes up. Like you’re trying to touch your shin here. So you’re going to push forward, lift your toes here, and you’re going to hold for five seconds. Then you relax a second. When you do that, you should feel some cramping kind of up through here, even in the front of the shin a little bit.
After you do those 5 sets, then you’re going to again, want to retest. We’ll see how that just doing that brief one did for me. So we’re going to take our thumb again for the retest, put your hands against the wall here, that was against the big toe. I’m going to drive my foot forward. See if I can get it.
It was barely able to touch it there, but you could see just even from doing that a little bit there, I was able to get a far greater range of motion. So the main points of that stretch is you’re really gonna want to push it forward to that end of range and then lift the toes up. This is great for people who are running, dealing with shin splints. Do you have any knee pain? Definitely want to do this one, or if you find really that you have trouble getting low on your squats, this is another great remedy for them. All right. That’s all for today. Hope you found value in this video. If you did give me a thumbs up, if you loved it, give me a heart.”
“Hey everybody! You have questions? Hopefully I have the answer. In today’s Q and A. I’m going to go over how to get better at pushups. If you haven’t seen my previous video, I have done one on how to get in a proper push-up position every single time, that is a great one to fix any alignment. We’ll briefly cover that today as well, but that videos can be a bit more in depth on that topic. So how do you get better at pushups? Common question we get all the time… You know, people either can’t do a full push up or they can do one, but they really struggle. And they’ve been working out for awhile. How do they get stronger at pushups? Really… There’s two real remedies here. There’s several, but two main ones that I found worked the best.
(1) First thing you want to do is increase the volume at which you do those pushups.
So think about it as practice throughout your day. Instead of just going into the gym and thinking, I need to do all these pushups for a great workout. If you could take the mindset, “Hey, I’m going to practice these pushups very regularly.” You’re going to get a lot better at them. So it could be as simple thing as you put something up in your house and every time you pass that, you know, to drop down, do a couple pushups. So that’d be the first step. Really, if you start to increase your volume, you’re going to more than likely see a great change.
2) Second thing. If that’s still not working, we’re going to want to check our alignment when we’re doing pushups and making sure we’re doing proper form. So a very quick example of this would be, you want to make sure I come in and see people put their hands way out in front of them. So they’re putting a lot of strain on their shoulders and they’re not loading up their triceps and the other supporting musculature that can really help you do a pushup. So very simple way to get into a good pushup is make a T here you fall forward and you kick your feet back. Okay?
Let’s say you’re somebody that can’t do a full push-up. How can you go about progressing those? So instead of the standard knee push-up, just going down from your knees and pushing up and repeating that daily. I want you to try this variation because you can really load what’s known as the eccentric portion of the exercise, which will really load the muscles. So again, we’ll get into a good pushup position going out. You want to keep your hips up, nice core engaged here, and then you go down just like you would go down for a regular full pushup. And then from there, we’ll press up from the knees right there. So that’s going to really help load those muscles. I found great value in clients that do that as well.
So the two main things are, you’re going to want to increase your volume first and foremost, second, check your form, make sure you’re in the proper push-up position. And 3rd thing, make sure that when you’re doing the push ups, you’re changing it up. You’re not just always going from the knees. It could be the way you are actually performing the exercise and the 4th a little bonus one here. If you strengthen other muscles around it that oppose those, especially the back muscles, you strengthen your shoulder muscles, which support you in a pushup, really work on that stability in your joints. You have a far greater chance of getting better at pushups.
All right. That’s all for today. Hope you found value in this video. If you did give me a thumbs up, if you loved it, give me a heart. As always, stay strong.”