Planning for the New Year

Dec 28, 2020 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

What is your exercise plan for the New Year? Do you have one? Is it even on the radar? Well this is a great time of year to start planning or revising your exercise goals for the coming year.

Maybe this will be the year you start exercising, maybe this will be the year you set higher goals, or possibly start a new sport or exercise pursuit.

I personally will be continuing to strengthen my right knee/leg (just recently got a partial knee replacement). I will also be focusing on improving my kicks as well. I got a new set of kicking targets that I am having fun with.

I plan to keep with my lifting routine of three times a week, cardio at least two times a week, long stretch routines twice a week and martial arts training whenever I can, weather permitting (my school is still closed due to Covid-19). In a perfect world I do martial arts training two to three times a week.

I also plan to start using the Lose It app again to better track my input vs. output.

Other than that I will just keep keeping on…because that is how to get it done, consistency and persistence are always the way.

Let me know what your plan is, I’m curious to know.

The Iron Neck

Dec 21, 2020 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

So here I am checking in again about the Iron Neck. First and foremost, training your neck is a tricky business and I would seek a professional’s advice.

 I recently purchased the Iron Neck starter, and found that it didn’t provide the resistance I needed, but I realized immediately that this product had merit. I promptly returned the starter model and purchased the Iron Neck pro.

I am happy to say that this model/product is pretty amazing. You can train your neck with a series of exercises without any flexion or extension for those with neck injuries, or anyone wanting to strengthen their neck it is innovatively incredible. 

I am a big fan of the Hammer Strength four way neck, and still use it whenever possible, unfortunately my current gym doesn’t have one. I use 45lb. plate for extension exercises as a poor substitute but at least it’s something. My point is that at least for me I use Iron Neck in addition to exercise where I can actually go through a full range of motion with negative resistance. I like using a harness for lateral flexion and extension, however some folks might advise against weighted extension exercises for the neck (tread carefully). Just yet another reason why the iron neck is such a great option for those trying to train their necks with minimal risk.

So on the whole I love this product and use it regularly.  It is not my sole means of training my neck but is a great addition to my tool box of exercises.

Thank you Iron Neck and keep up the good work!!

JETT

Training The Neck?!

Nov 30, 2020 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

Do any of you train your neck??

I actually apparently have “broken” my neck at some point during my life. I suffered a compression fracture at C3 in what I have narrowed down to two possible incidents, the details of which are not relevant. Irrespective my neck does give me issues on occasion and in the past ten years I have had 3 “episodes” that required physical therapy.

What I have found that is that is that if I keep my neck strong I am much less likely to need physical therapy. On a quick FYI  note, if you’re in the same boat I wouldn’t recommend doing 20 plus front flips at jump zone (the cause of last episode and physical therapy bout.

That being said here is what works for me. My favorite neck piece is the Hammer Strength 4 way neck. I usually would throw it in on my leg days, 4 sets in each direction. 

The more low tech options I use on occasion are a neck harnesses, and a wrap around weighted neck strengthener. Both of these are great options for home use and I relied heavily on both during the lockdown.

My lastest foray into neck training is the Iron Neck, I just bought the Iron Neck starter and am actually in the process of returning it. The starter model just doesn’t provide enough resistance. I have the pro model on the way (unfortunately for about $300 more) and will be testing ASAP.

I let you know how it goes…

So I’m curious, what do you do for you neck? Let me know…

Train Hard, Train Safe!!

-JETT

Testing out some new neck training equipment

What do you do to help get you through your workouts?

Oct 5, 2020 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

Having been an exercise enthusiast all my life there are times when it can be a bit of a grind. So what’s to be done to help with boredom or need for motivation?

My first go to is of course music…if it drives I listen. Have a play list ready, and work on updating it every so often to keep it fresh.

On occasion I might try a new supplement or revisit an old one. I’m actually about to try Animal Paks again.

New fitness gear and clothing are great go to as well. New outfits, especially new t-shirts are top for me. Then of course any new fitness gear is epic, I am now trying out some new neck training equipment.

I also like to use fitness trackers, and diet apps they are great ways to track progress and viewing the results of your efforts. One of my favorites is LoseIt.

And last but not least I like doing research – getting books on exercise theories and techniques and checking out YouTube.

What do you like to do to keep yourself motivated I’m curious let me know.

Train Hard, Train Safe

-JETT

The New Knee

Aug 31, 2020 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

It seems that my favorite thing to blog about are my knees. So here’s the latest update. I just recently 7/27/20 had a Mako partial knee replace in my right knee (https://bit.ly/2YQGk76). 

Within the past year I had both of my knees scoped to repair the meniscus. I was down to fifty percent of my cartilage left in my right knee and the medial aspect was bone on bone. The pain that it causing just got to a point where I had to make a move.

It’s been a little over a month and my physical therapy is going well and I have no more joint pain. Of course I was in a lot of pain for the first week and physical does hurt but less and less every day.

I’m told that I should be able to get back all the range of motion I had with my real knee and am looking forward to getting back to my martial arts training and hopefully squatting again some day.

So far so good…I’ll keep you posted as I am more able.

Train Hard, Train Safe!! 

Just Keep Moving!!

Sep 19, 2019 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

So here we are two weeks from my meniscus repair and all seem to be going well. Two days ago I had my first leg work out – five sets leg press topped out at 5 plates. I haven’t had to use crutches and will hopefully be back up to speed in time for the left knee surgery in mid-October.

What I’m getting at here is always keep moving. My work before and after the surgery is just as important as the surgery itself. Good pre-op health and fitness levels are key. This prep work can take on many forms and of course certain populations will have limitations. But do something!! 

Lose weight if you need to, strengthen the area affected (if possible), and the rest of your body while you’re at it. I know that’s a little general but I think you get the idea and if anyone reading this wants advice please feel free to contact me directly. And as always check with your Doctor first.

Then of course once you’re post-op do whatever you can as well, go to PT, swim, walk, lift, Tai -Chi or whatever you are able to do (of course under the guidance of your Doctor/Physical Therapist).

If you have a plan your recovery will be much faster!!

I hope this helps and I’ll let you know what happens with the other knee soon.

Train Hard, Train Safe!!

Tune Up Time

Aug 28, 2019 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

Well it has certainly been an age since my last blog post and I apologize for that. New business ventures and life seem to have gotten the better of me.

So lets jump right in…
All is well in JETT world but Mr. JETT needs a tune up. If you have ever ready and of my prior ramblings you’ll know that my knees are known to give me issues on occasion. Well that occasion is nigh and it seems that it’s time to get both of them scoped.

Anterior, medial osteoarthritis is the diagnosis. The main contributing factors are – I am mildly bow legged and have flipped the odometer a few times (yes wear and tear is one of the aging theories). Eventually I think it will lead to partial knee replacements. That technology has come a long ways and it pretty cool it’s worth checking out this link (http://bit.ly/2NASUCr). These two upcoming surgeries will be mainly clean-up and quick trims of the meniscus that is fraying in both knees.

Well of course when it rains it pours, I have had elbow issues over the past year as well. Right elbow was tennis elbow, I seem to have to have taken care of it through diligent stretching and rehab exercises. However the left elbow has some calcification and damage to one of the tendons. It was recommended that I try platelet-rich plasma treatment (PRP). Really the jury is still out but I trust my Doctor and am going to get my left elbow worked on while I am forced into some downtime for the knee. Check out this link for better description (https://www.regenmd.com/services/prp-therapy).

And of last but not least as I am ramping up for this this knee surgery, my neck is giving me trouble as well. 90 minutes at jump zone with the kids two weeks ago; I don’t think I’ve ever done as many flips in my life. Anyway getting a little chiropractic work to address the issue. I am currently on vacation and trying to lay low and let my body heal.

This seems to happen every two to three years for me, I have to take time and go into a tune up mode. I guess I should look at the bright side. I have started blogging again.

I’ll keep you posted as to progress…

The knees seem to be in good order…

Mar 6, 2018 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

Here is quick update on my knees. I have started back with my martial arts training and all is going well, actually no aches and pains at all so far.

I recently changed my whole workout routine and will be avoiding heavy squats, with a much greater focus on functional movements and calisthenics. This type of training is surely still a test of my knee(s) integrity but more from a volume standpoint. That being said, I have been sore and tired after these workouts but again no issues with my knees.

I also just started my “kick/punch” training (12-15 rounds of heavy bag work, with both punches and kicks) and so far the knees feel good as well.

The only thing I haven’t tried is running, my cardio work has been all elliptical. Running in my last bout of knee issues was absolutely the main driving factor. Seeing as how this current regimen is working, I don’t feel like rocking the boat so l’ll stick with the current regimen.

Long story short it seems that the Synvisc One shots (http://bit.ly/2oz6x7P) are working.

Knees good, me good, all good!!

Second Update On the Knees…

Feb 14, 2018 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

So here we are a week and a day later after my synvisc one injections in each knee (http://www.synviscone.com). I have gone from barely being able to walk to light leg training yesterday. The first couple of days I really had trouble walking, my knees felt tight and inflexible and I could not kneel.

By the weekend it was starting to get better and again yesterday I trained light legs – front squats, leg extensions and leg curls.

I will start back to my martial arts training this Friday and that will be the true test.

The ultimate benefit may yet to be revealed, but as long as I’m not having surgery I’m happy!!

Train Hard, Train Safe!!

Oh Those Knees!!

Feb 7, 2018 Eric Toussaint 6 Comments

Quick update on my knees, I just had two injections in each knee of Synviscone http://www.synviscone.com, it is an attempt to prolong the life of my knees. It basically cushions and lubricants the knee(s).

The injections aren’t the most pleasant of experiences but it was tolerable. I had the injections done yesterday (Tuesday – 2/06/18) and I admit I had trouble walking out of the Doctor’s office, but I am feeling much better today. I have been icing and they prescribed a steroidal anti-inflammatory.

I am hoping to start my martial arts training this Friday and will be squatting again next Tuesday., basically back to full activity by next week. Ironically I hit a 315lb. squat the day I had my injections.

That being said, why did I get the injections if I was able to squat 315lb.? I have had meniscus repairs in each knee and my right meniscus is currently frayed/fraying. I really don’t want to deal with another surgery so I am taking a preemptive strike.

I’ll let you know how the lube job went ASAP…

Train Hard, Train Safe!!