Patriotic Duties, Oatmeal and Some Muscle Talk

First thing this morning, I went out and voted (hope you did too). And by the time I got back, I was cold and really hungry. So, I put together a huge bowl of oatmeal.

In the mix was oats, chia seeds, banana, goji berries, cinnamon and almond milk on top. Sort of a random mix but very tasty, filling and nutrient dense.

 Oats Nov 6

Last night I redid my time trial for the plank challenge and I was able to increase my time by 30 seconds! It was tough and by the end my muscles were toast, but I am happy to see some results. It feels good to set goals and meet/beat them, no?

Image

I did notice that I was feeling some strain on my lower back towards the end. This makes sense because when you are flexing your core, the muscles in your back act as stabilizers.

When you are doing an exercise, the primary muscle is the one directly involved in the flexing or extending – however, there are other muscles involved that either stabilize a joint, or hold isometrically to stabilize your body.  For example, when you do a bicep curl, the primary muscle movement is in the bicep but the triceps act as stabilizers.

With core work, while you are primarily working your abdominals but muscles in your back are also working (and shoulders, quads etc). It’s always a good idea to work muscle groups evenly and not focus on one area, so with all of these plank holds it would make sense to be doing some exercise for my back and lower back, since these are not areas that I normally concentrate on.

I came across a good article that speaks to the importance of core strength on blisstree, you can find it here.

Some good ideas for back exercises and stretches are “swimmers”, or “the superman move”. These are simple isometric holds that can strengthen your back muscles without using weights.

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