Walk Against Back Pain

[Written by Peter Nielsen].
 
At some point in their lives, 80% of Americans will suffer from back pain. It is the most common cause of job-related disability and is a leading contributor to missed work, costing Americans at least $50 billion each year in health care costs. Often, lower back pain goes away within a few days, but not all of us are that lucky! Now there’s good news if you or a loved one suffers from back pain!
 
New research shows that adopting a simple aerobic walking program that includes walking two to three times a week for a period of 20 to 40 minutes can be as effective to reduce lower back pain as strengthening rehabilitation programs that depend on specialized equipment in clinics. A walking regimen fits easily into a daily routine and offers people with back pain more control and more responsibility for their own health.
 
The study, published in the journal Clinical Rehabilitation, found that when people actively walk, the abdominal and back muscles work in basically the same way as when doing exercises that target those areas. Unlike muscle strengthening programs, which often call for specific equipment and can involve exercises that require expert supervision, and it is a simple activity that can be done alone.
 
The study included 52 patients with lower back pain who participated in a randomized control trial. At the onset of the research, participants were assessed for pain levels, feelings of disability, limitations on daily activities, and walking endurance. Half of the group completed a typical clinic-based muscle strengthening program, with two to three exercise sessions a week for six weeks. The other half completed a six-week aerobic walking program, walking two to three times weekly, starting with 20 minutes of walking and progressing to 40 minutes as their endurance improved. Both groups improved significantly in all areas, and the walking program was found to be as effective as clinical treatment. The walking program has the additional advantage of encouraging patients to follow an overall healthier lifestyle.
 
Spring will be here soon, what better time to take up a new walking program! It’s a great low-impact activity that lowers blood pressure, boosts brain and immune system functioning, and reduces stress. It can also save your back!
 
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Healthy and Glowing

[Written by Peter Nielsen].
 
Beautiful, healthy skin projects fitness and youth. You can attain and keep that healthy glow with a nutritious, balanced diet. In fact, a healthy diet is absolutely essential to achieving glowing skin, because it allows your skin to heal, combats aging, and prevents inflammations. Adopt a nutritional regimen with the right types of protein, carbohydrates and fat, fruit and vegetables, and plenty of water, you’ll notice an improvement in the condition of your skin in just a few days.
 
• Here are a few guidelines that will help you on your way to a glowing complexion!
• Eat protein to repair skin cells. Good sources are turkey, fish, boneless skinless chicken, egg whites. If your a vegetarian go for sprouts, seeds, cheese, peas, grains, nuts, milk and soy bean!
• Eat fatty fish to boost the condition of cell membranes, the building blocks of healthy skin.
• Almonds, olive oil and rapeseed oil are high in antioxidant-rich monounsaturated fat to aid in rejuvenating skin cells.
• Keep your skin hydrated by drinking at least eight glasses of water a day.
• Vitamins A and B, found in milk, yogurt and oily fish, are essential for maintained glowing skin.
• The vitamin C in citrus fruits, berries, broccoli and cabbage provides collagen to heals your skin and keeps it firm.
• Vitamin E promotes healing and prevents dry skin and the formation of age spots. Foods rich in vitamin E include wheat germ, whole grains, leafy greens, nuts and seeds, olives and vegetable oils.
 
If you’re concerned about your skin becoming lax, remember, deeply colored fruits and dark, leafy greens have a higher concentration of skin-tightening and healing nutrients. Dark leafy greens such as kale renew your skin so that it actually looks and feels tighter, while lentils, beans and other legumes can prevent damage to your skin and make you look younger.
 
To maintain your healthy glow, don’t smoke, wear sunscreen during the day, and stay out of the sun during the afternoon.
 
Follow these nutrition tips, protect against sun damage, sleep well and you’ll have healthier, glowing skin in a week … and it just gets better!
 
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Cat Got Your Back

Cat® outerwear delivers warmth, comfort and convenience.
 
Winter is difficult enough for those of us who have brief forays into the elements. For those who tend to spend a great deal of time braving the weather – such as those who work outdoors or have an active outdoor lifestyle – winter can be downright brutal, making staying warm of the utmost importance. Dunham’s Sports offers a wide variety of products specifically designed for the latter group, including the following three jackets from Caterpillar, a company famous for its farming and construction equipment. All three jackets offer premium construction with the highest quality materials and numerous features to make daily tasks easy to accomplish while warding off the elements.
 
Insulated Twill Jacket
 
“Keeping warm and dry is what the Insulated Twill Jacket is all about. It features a hideaway hood in the collar so you can quickly raise it when needed and tuck it away when you don’t. It also features a two-way front zip with snap closure to help keep warmth in and weather out,” said Eric Hartmann of Cat Apparel.
 
Available in black, the Insulated Twill Jacket offers quilted insulated lining for warmth and maximum performance. The hood can be custom-fit via a drawcord and the cuffs are adjustable, thanks to a hook and loop tab closure.
 
“The Insulated Twill Jacket, which is water resistant and windproof, is the do-it-all jacket for the do-it-all person,” Hartmann added.
 
Defender Insulated Jacket
 
When additional insulation is required, consider the Cat Defender Insulated Jacket.
 
“Our Defender Insulated Jacket is an all-winter insulated jacket built for functionality. It features a water-resistant finish, highly durable nylon ripstop fabric and active weight insulation,” Hartmann added.
 
To help you retain your body heat while helping keep cold, wind and wet weather out, the Defender Insulated Jacket offers a number of thoughtful features. A full front zipper with storm flap and beard guard, a stand-up collar, adjustable cuffs and an adjustable draw cord with cord locks – all work together to ensure you stay warm and comfortable.
 
If you work outdoors in the winter, you know how important it is to be seen in low-light conditions. The Defender Insulated Jacket has you covered with reflective Caterpillar logos on the left chest panel and back collar.
 
“Anyone who tends to spend a significant amount of time outdoors in the winter will truly appreciate the Defender Insulated Jacket’s quilted, insulated body. It delivers enhanced warmth and maximum protection,” Hartmann said.
 
Heavy Insulated Parka
 
For those bitterly cold winter days, check out the Cat Heavy Insulated Parka.
 
“We like to say that our Heavy Insulated Parka does two things exceptionally well: keep you warm and help make sure you are visible in low-light conditions, thanks to our reflective webbing across the chest and back,” Hartmann said.
 
Available in Army Moss, the Heavy Insulated Parka features a two-way full front zip, storm flap with storm closure, draw cords and cord locks for optimal protection against the elements.
 
“What I really like about our Heavy Insulated Parka is its removable, microfleece-lined hood. Zip it off when you don’t need it. Zip it on and draw the draw cord tight to keep your head warm when conditions dictate it,” Hartmann explained.
 
Warm, Durable and Convenient
 
All three jackets feature highly durable, water-resistant outer layers and 100% polyester taffeta interior lining for optimal comfort. All three also offer numerous pockets, ensuring there’s a place for everything and everything in its place.
 
With as many as eight pockets in the Heavy Insulated Parka, five in the Insulated Twill Jacket and four in the Defender Jacket, you won’t run out of places to put things. In the Defender Jacket for example, there are pockets for a tablet and another to store gloves or a knit hat.
 
Going the extra distance, the Heavy Insulated Parka features hand-warmer pockets that are lined with microfleece, an inside pocket for cellphones and two vertical pockets under the storm placket to ensure items stored there are protected from the elements.
 
No matter the model, nearly every pocket includes a closure system to ensure items stay securely in place. That’s indicative of the dedication Caterpillar puts into ensuring its apparel is comfortable and functional.
 
“The Cat brand is one of the most prolific in the construction and mining sectors and its Cat logo is iconic. We put the same level of attention to detail and commitment to the highest quality in our apparel as is put into our heavy-duty equipment,” Hartmann said.
 
Dunham’s Sports carries a vast array of Cat apparel. Be sure to stop by your local store and speak with a knowledgeable sales professional who can help you choose the jacket that is most ideally suited to your needs, ensuring warmth and comfort all winter long.
 
-Your Friends at Dunham’s
 
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Strengthen Your Most Important Muscle

People usually exercise to improve what’s on the outside—slim waist, bulging biceps, six-pack abs. But don’t forget what’s on the inside.
 
Heart disease is the number one cause of death for men and women in the U.S., according to the American Heart Association (AHA).
 
Regular exercise leads to a healthier heart. The AHA states that 30 minutes of moderate exercise per day five times a week can counter conditions like obesity, high blood pressure and poor cholesterol levels—all of which contribute to heart attacks and strokes.
 
Happy New Year to a Healthier You
 
Elliptical machines, treadmills and stationary bikes are ideal for achieving a healthier lifestyle. They provide a low-impact option to running and are much easier on knees, hips and lower back. Having one of these machines at home makes it convenient to get your workout in before or after work or while watching TV.
 
Easily adjustable resistance and inclination makes these machines fully customizable to your fitness level.
 
Those who favor early-morning workouts will tell you they are more energized during the day, and their increased metabolism helps them burn more calories throughout the day. Those who prefer working out after dinner find that it helps relieve the day’s stress and can make it easier to fall asleep.
 
Bottom line; continue to work on the biceps and abs to look good. To feel good and be healthier, be sure to add aerobic exercises to your workouts. Your heart, lungs and family members will thank you for it.
 
-Fitness Fanatic
 
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Get Fit Simply

Join the exercise craze of the season.
 
Readers of this magazine know about my passion for golf. Whenever Michigan’s weather and personal commitments allow it, you’re likely to find me at my favorite course playing or practicing. During the offseason, I’m frequently found either at an indoor driving range or at the local gym, focusing on several exercises to improve my game. My goal this winter is to improve my core muscles and my legs, both critical to improving club speed, which results in added distance, and one of the tools I will employ in my quest is the Simply Fit Board® Exercise Board I picked up from Dunham’s Sports.
 
After a successful national television commercial launch this year, the Simply Fit Board® has gained a lot of popularity and promises to be the exercise craze of the season. Chances are you’ve seen commercials for it – men and women twisting their way to tighter abs and more toned legs.
 
The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) recognizes some of the benefits of balance training for rehabilitating certain injuries, strengthening muscles and improving postural alignment. Even the Mayo Clinic acknowledges that balance exercises can improve stability. For me, I like its lightweight and convenience. I can hop on the Simply Fit Board® any time and it easily stores out of the way.
 
When I first started using it, I felt the workout more in my legs than in the abs. To truly engage my core muscles, I added hand weights, making all the difference. I also like that the Simply Fit Board® further improves my balance, another critical component to the golf swing.
 
The Simply Fit Board® comes with a user guide and a workout DVD that includes instruction ranging from basic exercises to more advanced ones. If you don’t already have a set, I strongly recommend visiting your local Dunham’s Sports store to get yourself some hand weights; they will come in handy for nearly every exercise featured in the DVD. Be sure to start with something light, such as 3-lb. dumbbells, and work your way up.
 
As with any workout regimen, it’s important to talk to your doctor and follow instructions closely, keeping knees bent and the back straight while on the board. If you plan on using the Simply Fit Board® on hardwood floors, the manufacturer recommends placing a small, tight woven rug with rubber backing (on hardwood floors or other hard surfaces) to protect the board and your floors.
 
The Simply Fit Board® is available in orange, green, magenta or blue. I believe it will be a suitable supplement to my gym workouts and will replace some of my couch time with a more suitable, healthier alternative.
 
-Fitness Fanatic
 
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