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Sports and General Fitness Conditioning
 News You Can Use©

May, 2014 Issue
To our Readers: Please forgive the delay in our sending out this May, 2014 issue of our newsletter. We've decided to combine our two newsletters (Sports Conditioning and General Fitness) as a way of reducing the amount of email we send to your Inbox. We hope that you will enjoy this new combined newsletter and will continue to share it with your friends and family.

About LEC Fitness

LEC Fitness, LLC is a Fitness company offering a myriad of fitness services and programs to Washington, DC metropolitan area (VA, DC and MD) individuals, companies, schools and other organizations. LaRue E. Cook is the President and owner of LEC Fitness, and holds certifications as a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS), Youth Conditioning Specialist, Sports Performance and Injury Prevention Trainer, Personal Trainer, and Speed and Agility Coach. Our company provides full-service, research-based fitness programming for clients of all ages, physical conditions and fitness goals. Our services include:

  • Sports Performance and Conditioning Training and Testing

  • Personal Training for Individual, Pairs and Small Groups

  • The Award-Winning Sportsmetrics™ Non-Contact ACL Injury Prevention Training for Athletes

  • Employee Wellness Programs 

  • Healthy Newsletters, Lunch and Learn Seminars and Presentations

  • Fitness Assessments for Employees, and more.

LEC Fitness is also very proud to offer our 'PreHab' and Post-Rehab Strength and Conditioning services to Washington metropolitan area Health Care professionals and their patients. Our PreHab services are targeted to patients who can benefit from improving their strength and conditioning prior to their scheduled surgery and other medical procedures. While our Post-Rehab services offer patients a safe and effective way to train and improve their conditioning following their approved physical therapy or other rehabilitation after injury or surgery.

Your Health is Our Business!

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We value and appreciate your trust and support!



LaRue has been asked by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) to author an article, for its Personal Trainer Quarterly publication, on Functional Training. This article will be scheduled for publication by the NSCA later this year.

The NSCA is a worldwide authority on strength and conditioning founded in 1978.
LEC Fitness is proud to serve as a sponsor for the 2nd Annual Serving For Heroes Charity Open tennis tournament held in July, and which serves to benefit the Wounded Warrior organization and the military service men and women it serves. 
What's Your Reaction?©

For those of you out there involved in Youth Sports at any level (parent, coach, athlete) this article is for you! This is a reprint from one of my published articles appearing in the Tennis Life Magazine back in 2009. 

Reaction Time

I confess, I love inspiring motivational lyrics to songs. As a matter of fact, I collect them. Here's one that I recently came across that I feel is very appropriate not only for the tennis athlete (ALL athletes), but for their supporters (parents, coaches etc).

"There's always gonna be another mountain, I'm always gonna wanna make it move/Always gonna be an  uphill battle/Somtimes I'm gonna have to lose/Ain't about how fast I get there/Ain't about what's waiting on the other side/It's the Climb" (From "The Climb" sung by Miley Cyrus). 

To me this passage epitomizes what sport is all about. Every day, we as athletes face another mountain! Whether it's in practice, a game, or in the gym, each day is different, and poses a new challenge. Even the most elite athletes can perform great one day and lousy the next; it's what being human is all about. The key is to limit the number of those 'lousy days' through hard practice and a positive attitude. One way of doing this is by 'practicing' how to focus on what's going right in the training, practice or game.

Training to improve sports performance, perfecting a technical skill in sport, or just playing the game is not a straight-line progression. There are, and always will be, many peaks and valleys during an athlete's training and playing experience. This is something that coaches, parents and trainers should be aware of, accept as part of being human, and learn how to use to affect a positive attitude in the athlete. How we as the athlete's support system handle these ups and downs, and more importantly how you teach your athlete how to deal with them, can make all the difference between 'success' or 'failure.' Staying positive and focusing on what's going 'right,' rather than always focusing on what needs improvement, what went wrong, or what is missing, is vitally important to building an athlete's confidence and encouraging them to strive for better. Here's an example:

During a tennis match your daughter hits a deep approach shot, adeptly moves into the court positioning herself for a volley, anticipates her opponent's passing shot attempt, and then badly misses the volley. Do you see (and note) the great tactical play she made to put herself in position to make the volley? Or do you focus on the missed shot? Coaches, parents and trainers are teachers, motivators and leaders. Your athlete picks up on many of the cues they get from you, spoken or unspoken. Slumped shoulders, that infamous look to the sky, a grimace, all can mean 'failure' (and disappointment) to a sensitive athlete. So, the next time you witness a perceived 'failure' in your athlete's performance, try to view it from what went right! This doesn't mean that you need to ignore the mistake, but instead that you use any setback as a learning experience, not a source of punishment or embarrassment. You'll be amazed at how your change in focus and attitude will have a positive impact on your athlete and spur them to want to improve, and perhaps more importantly, to not be afraid to take chances and play freely. This is a lesson that all of us can take to heart, not only as it relates to our athletes and sports, but also for ourselves and life.
How Our Bodies Adapt to Resistance Training: The Long and Short of It!©

Before we get into the discussion of how our bodies adapt to resistance training, we need to clarify exactly what resistance training is. Many people are under the misunderstanding that resistance training is limited to weight-lifting ---  it's not! Resistance training is literally performing an exercise against any resistance. This can be using free weights, weight machines, weighted medicine balls, resistance bands and tubes, and even body weight. When we perform resistance training we put our bodies under stress! But the stress associated with healthy exercise is a good one, and can lead to several adaptations that will lead to improvements in our overall health. Here are just three very important positive changes to our bodies and health that can result from resistance training..

Increase in Strength
Research shows that most of the increase in strength that we observe early on. when we train with weights and other resistance, comes from what are called 'neural adaptations.' What this means is that our bodies become more proficient at recruiting its muscles to work (both individually and together) and produce force. This is an important point because oftentimes women who begin strength training will express concern over getting big muscles by working on their strength. The truth is that unless you are training specifically for muscle hypertrophy (bigger muscles), you can get stronger simply by your body learning how to use its muscles better --- neural adaptations.

Stimulation of Bone Growth

The muscle contractions and mechanical forces produced during resistance training stimulates our bones to growth stronger by producing new bone. This is one of the primary reasons that physicians often recommend resistance training for their female patients as a way to avoid osteoporosis.

Positive Effects on Your Body Composition 

More and more research is identifying resistance training as having a positive effect on our overall body composition, more commonly referred to as your body fat. Not only does this type of training help to improve your muscle to body fat ratio, but the exercise itself has a positive impact on your calorie-burning capacity, both during and after exercise. Both of these results can only help in the 'calories-in v. calories-out' equation leading to weight-loss.

In a study reported in the International Journal of Sports Medicine 72 obese kids aged 15-19 participated in a 6-month exercise study. The kids were divided into three groups (leisure physical activity, cardiovascular training only, and cardiovascular plus strength training). After six months, it was the cardiovascular plus strength training group that produced the best results (an average weight-loss of 18.5 pounds, and a reduced body fat mass of 9%).  

What Weight Should I Use?©

As a trainer, I'm often asked about the amount of weight someone 'should be' using during their workout. My answer is always the same -- "It depends."  Here's what I mean.

The amount of weight that you use in your workouts is directly tied to your exercise goals. In the National Strength and Conditioning Association's publication Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning training with heavier weights is used to improve your muscular strength (there is a formula for calculating the load for this type of exercise, but that is beyond the scope of this short article). Exercise with slightly lighter weights (than those used for strength training) is used for other fitness goals such as Power, Muscle Hypertrophy (growth in size), or Muscular Endurance. For those looking to enhance overall fitness, it is generally suggested that you exercise with a weight that allows for approximately 12-15 repetitions before you can no longer lift that weight.

 Still uncertain as to how much weight you should use? A Certified Personal Trainer or Strength and Conditioning Coach can help you design a program to fit your fitness goals and needs.
LEC Fitness, LLC is a proud participant in the programs below by providing our clients with research-based professional fitness, exercise, injury prevention, wellness and health services. Click on one of the logos for additional information.
We recommend that you always check with your physician or healthcare provider before performing any exercises, exercise programs, or any of the health, fitness or wellness information discussed in this newsletter, to ensure that it is appropriate for you.

LEC Fitness, LLC nor any of its officers, employees, agents, affiliated organizations, or organizations mentioned or identified in this newsletter are liable or responsible for any injury of any kind to reader related to, or as a result of any of the information or links contained in or referred to in this newsletter. The reader acknowledges and assumes any and all risk resulting from following any information contained in this newsletter. 
Copyright © *|2013-2014|* *|LEC Fitness, LLC|*, All rights reserved.

LEC Fitness, LLC has been providing safe and effective Personal Training, Sports Performance, Corporate Wellness, Post-Rehab, Injury Prevention and Youth Conditioning services to local Washington, DC metropolitan Individuals and Companies since 1993.

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