Thursday, October 3, 2013

The Values of Physical Fitness While Living With Early Symptoms of Arthritis and Poor Circulation

How does a person who suffers day in and day out with arthritic pain and poor circulation better themselves through physical fitness? It is no surprise that the very act of exercise itself can help to regenerate and revitalize the body. It is more surprising that more people are realizing the importance of physical exercise and are making good efforts to change themselves for the best.

In this article I will list some components of physical fitness exercises for the shoulders. I will cover other parts of the body like elbows, neck, legs, hips, and feet in other articles.

In this article I will help you explore some shoulder routines combined with some great nutrition ideas that will give you a good start in the right direction to better yourself. In addition I will cover some thoughts on all natural supplements that combined with a good diet and exercise regimen may help any person who wants to go to the "Old Home Gym" or "Public Gym" to take control of their lives.

Component #1

Its all in the mind.

The first component of physical fitness starts in the mind. You have to decide to change. I realized early on that no matter what I read or how much I envied another persons achievements I had a need to make that determination for myself. I was determined to make the difference.


Be your own self motivator. Nobody is going to make you do anything. We are left to the basics of our human nature that is our ability to choose. Read books or search the Internet. There is a lot out there to learn. So choose wisely!

Component #2

The Shoulder?

Here is a quick anatomy lesson on the shoulder for those like me (till I researched it) didn't know or understand how this body part works.

In the human anatomy the shoulder joint comprises the part of the body where the humerus (a long bone in the arm or forelimb that runs from the shoulder to the elbow) attaches to the scapula (connects the arm bone to the collar bone). The shoulder is the group of structures in the region of the joint. It is made up of three bones, the collarbone, shoulder blade, and the upper arm bone as well as associated muscles, ligaments and tendons.

There are two kinds of cartilage in the joint. The first type is the white cartilage on the ends of the bones called (Articular Cartilage) which allows the bone to glide and move on each other. When this type of cartilage starts to wear out (a process called arthritis) the joints become painful and stiff.

The second type of cartilage in the shoulder is the Labrum. This type is distinctly different from the Articular Cartilage in which it is more fibrous or rigid on the ends of the ball and socket. Also, this cartilage is only found around the socket where it is attached.

The shoulder must be flexible for the wide range of motion required in the arms and hands and also strong enough to allow for actions such as lifting, pushing and pulling. All these are part of a good physical fitness routine.

So what causes the cartilage to deteriorate? (aka Osteoarthritis)

Usually age is a big factor. However age is not the only contributor. Other culprits are excessive weight which puts stress on joints.There is also joint overuse, joint injury or stress, and family history. Other possible causes are genetic or developmental abnormalities in the structure of the joint which can cause excess wear and tear.

If you have any genetic or family history of inherited abnormalities in your cartilage structure, seek a physical fitness test from your doctor to determine early symptoms of arthritis. He will give the right advice on the right methods of physical fitness that will work for you.

Component #3

What shoulder fitness routine do I start with?

It has been my experience in weight training that simplest way is usually always the best way. You need to develop a physical fitness program that works for you if you are to properly train your shoulders. The basics of shoulder training is one that requires a person to be conscious of every movement as well as develop a regimen that will consistently challenge oneself to push onward. In all honesty if you get bored you're going to quite!

Keep it fresh and exciting! Change up the routines I list here to keep your body in a state where it will not adapt to just one technique.

Start with 1, then 2, then 3.....

I recommend starting with three (3) separate shoulder exercises for obtaining maximum results.

Start with 3-4 sets of either "machine shoulder press" or "dumbbell presses". I recommend doing between 8-10 repetitions on each set. If you are a beginner use a light weight that gives you some resistance. If you use to light of a resistance you are simply cheating yourself.

Remember Component #1? "It's all in the mind." If you don't get motivated to see results our nature is to just get by with the easiest possible route.

Be careful not to start out with more weight than you can handle as you might injure yourself. Slowly advance in weight as your strength increases. Each set will look as follows:

  • Start by raising the weight above your head and palms out. DO NOT lock the elbows! By locking your elbows you risk hyper extending them causing injury.

  • Next lower the weight till your closed fist is parallel with your chest.

  • Repeat exercise 2-3 more times till completed. Rest 1-2 minutes.

Another type of shoulder exercise is the "side lateral raise". In this exercise I recommend using dumbbells for this exercise. Each set will look as follows:

  • Do 3-4 sets of 8 repetitions with moderately light weight. This isolates the shoulder caps or sides. Don't feel bad if you look over at the guy or gal next you and they are lifting a lot more then you. You will get there soon if you keep up the exercise.Start by holding the dumbbells with palms facing your legs.

  • Raise the dumbbell laterally so your arms are stretched outwardly (palms facing downward at this point) Hold for approximately 2 seconds. Squeeze at the top of the motion, then lower to the starting point.

  • Repeat exercise till 2-3 more times till completed. Rest 1-2 minutes.

The last type of shoulder exercise strengthens the rear deltoid muscle. This normally does not get a lot of attention. Most people forget to even include this part of the shoulder in their fitness routine. So if you get to this point and you are completely wiped out you can stop. However, if you're like me I want to make sure I get all my areas covered. So keep going. Each set will look as follows with 3-4 sets with 8-10 repetitions.

  • Start in a bent over position about a 45 degree angle. Bend the knees slightly to help support and balance yourself. Use light weight dumbbells for this exercise. Be careful not to lock your knees, keep them bent through the entire exercise to avoid stressing the lower back muscles.

  • Your palms should be facing each other and your arms hanging towards the floor. Look up, and with a slow motion raise your elbows just above the ridge of your back (90 degree angle at the elbow).

  • Lower back to starting position.

  • Repeat exercise till 2-3 more times till completed. Rest 1-2 minutes.

That's It! Congratulations! You just finished your first step towards bettering yourself in the physical fitness arena. If you continue to exercise you will strengthen bones, and muscles as well as help circulation in your limbs.

So what does poor circulation and the value of physical fitness have in common?

When we exercise our heart begins to pump blood through our body. The muscles that surround our skeletal structure require great amounts of blood and oxygen. I have experience poor circulation first hand. Many years ago I had an allergic reaction to a medication that was given to me. The doctors after many different tests concluded that I had an allergic reaction to penicillin.

I was in the hospital for four days. At that time a nurse had me get out of bed and walk around. I did not understand the implications but I immediately understood why. My legs would not could not move! I was dumbfounded! I struggled to walk even the shortest distance. During my four day stay at the hospital my muscles developed atrophy. It took several walks before I gained my strength back.

What I am getting at is that when we exercise our bodies we cause this awesome machine to do what it was intended to do. To get good circulation you must make your heart work harder. When you exercise with weights or cardiovascular exercise like running or jogging you force blood and oxygen into the muscles and therefor helping with circulation.

Now I do not suffer from any disease like type 2 diabetes. Nor do I suffer from any arthritis. But I understand now the the full benefits of making the most out of most types of physical fitness programs. Mine is just one of personal preference. So if you suffer from poor circulation due to type 2 diabetes or perhaps you have pain from arthritis in your joints don't fret.

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