To Your Health Columns by Brian Cole

For your age…

…is supposed to be a compliment? Bah!  Let’s start with some facts: All around us are examples of successful, productive individuals who are contributing just as efficiently as ever but are much older than previous generations. Many are being criticized for “holding back” the younger folks from moving up their ladders. Fact is… Read more »

From a fan of self indulgence

Research: “The systematic investigation to establish facts and enable us to accurately reach new conclusions.” On subjects other than health I’ve written that while the knowledge gained from research is often necessary to help us make better decisions, it is not a guarantee we will. Applying my statement to our… Read more »

And his answer was…

It’s March. Many New Year’s resolutions have disappeared. The desired changes didn’t happen. Yet. But they were positive and well meaning, so let’s re-explore.  A brief but connected detour first. One of our trainers, Joey Wallen, and I often trade new info about exercise, techniques, adherence, etc. We’re closing in on… Read more »

How’s your habenula?

For most of us, 2021 was such a different year. Dealing with this pandemic sure changed our daily lives in many ways, but one thing is still the same — and every January I have a similar message when writing this column. For some of my regular readers it may be repetitious… Read more »

BONES

About 10 years ago, a local orthopedic practice ran an ad stating that our skeletons, specifically our spines, have the responsibility of supporting our bodies. In response I wrote a column titled “No, They Don’t” (which if the rest of this interests you, you can find on our website…page 4… Read more »

Planning, problem solving and imagination

Because being physically healthy has been my life-long interest (I grew up with a father who was a physical therapist), that’s the area I naturally gravitate toward in these “To Your Health” columns. During a recent search into self-motivation, self-discipline and focusing, I stumbled into some interesting information I’ll share in a minute. First… Read more »

On aging gracefully

Gracefully: “In an attractively elegant way. In a respectful and dignified way. Polite, kind, pleasant, mannerly, charming…” Those are some of the dictionary definitions and synonyms. While there’s a lot of good to say about them, from this man who’s clearly in his fourth quarter, I say BAH! Sounds too… Read more »

Please forget about increasing your life span

How’re you feeling? Are you tired? Sluggish? Have lots of surplus daily energy? Does your neck feel stiff and its range-of-motion restricted? How about your low back? Do you feel like you need to stretch just about everything and loosen up? Do you have arthritic joints? Too much body fat?… Read more »

Balance

I’m guessing the first thing that comes to mind is not falling. While there’s nothing more important, there are some additional considerations I’ll get to in a minute. But first let’s address not falling. If any of you have fallen, or had a friend or relative fall, you know how… Read more »

We won’t stay the same.

Even with its unique challenges and changes, 2020 went by fast. 2021 will too. Life and time don’t allow us to stay the same. We can improve ourselves in 2021 or we will decline. Because it’s January, lots of folks have good intentions (resolutions) for the New Year! And many of those… Read more »

If you’re starting to exercise at home…

…which, considering the obvious challenge of keeping crowded gym’s surfaces clean while practicing any semblance of distancing, makes a lot of sense for many. So to be safe and effective please consider: What is the actual function of the specific muscles you’re trying to train? And are you training them… Read more »

First, let’s agree on the goal…

There are many different approaches to effective exercise with different goals for different folks. Many of them are perfectly valid to achieve valid goals. I’m not writing this to establish right/wrong or good/bad. I’m writing about what makes sense to me; my focus. I’m saying if you want to pose… Read more »

A challenge…

I’m writing this column in mid-March but you’ll be reading it in May. I sure hope this viral threat has turned in a positive direction by then. My challenge is to write this column without apprehension of impending disaster or smart remarks about 2020 as the year of the toilet… Read more »

OK, but is it sustainable?

When I started with private clients more than 20 years ago, I inherited quite a few with similar stories. With minor variations they went something like: “I worked with a trainer a couple of years ago and it was really effective so I want to get started again.” Hmm… This… Read more »

Hi…

Some of you reading this have made “resolutions” about various ways you’re going to improve in 2020. Because I help folks do that all year round, I’m going to write about how to be successful. The specific goals are yours and whether or not they’re realistic, well, that’s yours, too.… Read more »

“It’s up to you, but…”

The first goal of these health and fitness columns is to inspire you to do something additional to improve. You may be doing plenty but I doubt it’s enough to have zero room to step it up. If nothing else, more consistency (unless you’re OCD) is always beneficial. Some suggestions for consistency: Go to… Read more »

Recycling…

A few years ago while in Quebec City I noticed the dual trash and recycling bins on the sidewalks. The conscientious Canadians were responsibly separating their items to deposit as they walked by. Impressive. Especially as I recalled the fast food bags and beer cans casually thrown on the side of my Virginia roads. I… Read more »

Your butt… and low back issues

A few years ago a bright, successful local physical therapist and I invented and patented a piece of equipment to both prevent and address low back pain. During the year or so we spent developing it, a name consistently came up in the research: Dr. Stuart McGill. A professor with the… Read more »

Springtime in Virginia!

Let’s start with the sunrise! When I’m in my beach cottage, the sun rises over the water horizon and is a dependable reminder of all we have to be thankful for. Right now it’s combined with the uplifting mood of springtime in Virginia, which is as nice as anywhere on… Read more »

Our function. Our responsibility.

Ordinarily I don’t like superlatives. They rule out too much of value but…the most frustrating reality in this wonderful and relevant profession is the inability of people we care about to lose their unwanted body fat. Being human I understand surrendering to temptations and making choices that aren’t beneficial, along with… Read more »