Exercise and Cross-Fit

A patient asks;

What do you think of exercise and Cross-Fit?;

I write this article based on my observations and the patient population I currently have, and have cared and worked with for nearly 27 years. This includes age ranges from birth to nearly 100.

As a longtime lover of fitness and an athlete I write this brief article. My position on the role of exercise is clear and has been revealed in past articles on my blog such as “aging and exercise,” and “weight, exercise and mental function.”

Over the last 10 or so years since Cross-Fit has become popular the number of injuries related to this activity are more numerous than I have seen in any other consumer gym related organized physical activity. I have observed muscle and skeletal injuries,  inability to recover from workouts, and general hormonal imbalances that cause overall ill health. The latter 2 issues are more manifested in those over 30 years of age.

Different body types and ages are suited for different exercise types and intensities. Many people who are in the 40 and above age range who have weakened adrenal and stress systems – that they are likely unaware of, or age related decline in these and other body systems, may not do well with Cross-Fit because the body can become easily over trained, and their recovery times are much longer than younger participants. It all adds up like this; too much breakdown of tissue too fast from too intense an exercise program too soon; plus not enough enzymatic activity for recovery and not enough required rest equals a painful muscle and skeletal disaster for some, or a hormonal quagmire of illness for others. We can compensate for this nutritionally and with the proper care. People of all ages need to be mindful before starting an exercise program of any type and consult with a physician knowledgeable about the program and the effect it may have on their bodies. If you undertake an exercise program and have disabling symptoms, severe pain, and/or inability to function more than 2 days after; or if you notice that your energy is declining, lacking, or that you are gaining weight, then you may be suffering from a type of over-training syndrome. Consult with a knowledgeable healthcare professional as continuing could cause future health problems. It makes no sense getting sick trying to become well!

Till next time,

Dr. Mincey

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