BBJ Fitness Corner | Functional strength and endurance

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HAVE you ever wondered how construction workers can perform the same movements and tasks without fatigue throughout the day?

Gold's Gym personal trainer Jerry Diaz said functional strength and endurance can explain it.

"When repeatedly performing construction work, one’s bodily system must absorb the rigorous repetition of synchronized, kinetic push-pull movements," he added.

When not trained or familiar with a specific movement, the body is at risk of over-loading which could result in extreme soreness and pain, he said.

“A personal trainer  can perform various explosive movements with medicine ball and kettlebells, but those do not equate to repeatedly carrying hollow blocks and shoveling sand and cement,” he added.

For an individual  interested in joining a triathlon or a marathon, Diaz said he must be exposed to rigorous training for a specific amount of time to build endurance and avoid serious injury.

Jun Aquino performs construction work from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Contributed photo


John and Lando manually mix cement. Contributed photo

Diaz reiterated that there is a big difference between construction work  and training at a gym.

If a fitness enthusiast is placed in an environment of constant hammering, pulling the wheelbarrow and lifting, that person may not be efficient or even useful, he added.

It’s the same thing with a construction worker who, for the first time, visits the gym and was told to deadlift 225lbs of barbell and plates.

Diaz takes on clients interested in various types of  fitness, but he bases the program on the client's daily lifestyle.

He said a client, for example, can request  to be trained like an MMA fighter.

 But whatever the program is, Diaz said it is essential to master  basic movements and postural skills first.

These will provide a strong foundation that can help a person build a purposeful, functional and healthy lifestyle.

Diaz recommends the following tips:

  • Start with basic daily activities such as walking the dog, carrying groceries, and gardening.
  • Progress to an intensity that allows you to complete breath cycles. Too much intensity, however, will prompt your body to tell you brain to avoid that experience in the future.
  • To build a habit of an active lifestyle: keep it simple and avoid fads or short-term exercise programs that require expensive equipment. 

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