Let’s take our exercise programming back to our childhood, when we put puzzles together, piece by piece to get the final project. Now that we are active adults, each piece of our puzzle represents an exercise component and our bodies are the ‘final project’. The key with each puzzle is to make sure all the pieces fit in the right place to make it complete. Now that we have a visual picture at our body puzzle, lets piece together our eight components which are; Mindset/Motivation, Nutrition, Cardiorespiratory Training, Balance Training, Core Training, Speed & Agility training, Strength Training and Flexibility training. The pieces of our ‘body puzzle’ do not necessarily need to go in any order but the first emphasized piece should be the mindset/motivation.
Our Pieces explained:
1. Mindset/Motivation: Our bodies go and do what our mind tells it too. People who are setting daily, weekly and monthly goals will be more successful with their puzzle.
2. Nutrition not only includes adequate protein, healthy carbs, and healthy fats but also water hydration and sleep as well. We are what we eat, drink and sleep! Our body puzzle deserves a piece that is fueled by an energized body and mind.
3. The Cardiorespiratory piece of the body puzzle can be equivalent to the engine of a car. Cardio increases positive stress on the heart and a strong heart means a strong body. Our muscles and brain functions on the blood that circulates from our hearts. Remember to keep your “engine” running and your heart pumping!
4. As mentioned previously, our bodies and muscles are controlled by our brain mentally and physically. The Balance training piece needs to be remembered by thinking about neuromuscular efficiency. Neuromuscular efficiency is a fancy way of saying that balance training increases the communication between motor-neurons (nerves) and muscles which assists in more efficient movement (repetitions).
5. The Core training piece is one of the most important pieces of the puzzle in regard to efficient movement and trunk stability. Your core is attached directly to the spine which is involved in all movement of the body.
6. The Speed & Agility piece addresses gaining comfort in our bodies in multi-directional planes and at faster paces. For athletes, this piece should be near the top and emphasized through proper progression.
7. The Flexibility training piece is the most important component in regard to recovery and injury prevention. Static, active, passive and dynamic stretching should all be incorporated to benefit in the transformation of your body. Foam rolling should be done regularly, and dry-needling/massage therapy are rehab based techniques that can be included in the flexibility piece.
As you look back on the 8 pieces, take note of what piece(s) you are missing in your puzzle. Let’s add the piece(s) and make sure they’re in the right place to finish the project.
Are YOU Game?