Monday, October 21, 2013

A little movement, please, instead of banana bread

The other day on Face Book, a friend posted her dilemma. Should I, she asked, go to the gym or stay home and knit. There in lies the problem.

If you have to make the decision every time you plan to workout or exercise, then you're lost. Because I guarantee that most days something more important or inviting will rear its head. Should you walk around the block or watch the news? Should you vacuum the floor or sit down for a few minutes and read the paper? Should you go to the gym and work out on one of the machines or cook that banana bread that has to be made so you don't have to throw away the bananas. And on and on.

And why should you bother with any kind of exercise in the first place? It's a lot of trouble. However, the facts are that exercise has been shown to lessen the severity of just about all diseases and ailments. Harvard School of Public Health lists these benefits:
  • Improves your chances of living longer and living healthier
  • Protects you from heart disease and stroke or its precursors, high blood pressure and undesirable blood lipid patterns
  • Protects you from developing certain cancers, including colon and breast cancer, and possibly lung and endometrial (uterine lining) cancer
  • Helps prevent type 2 diabetes (what was once called adult-onset diabetes) and metabolic syndrome
  • Helps prevent the insidious loss of bone known as osteoporosis
  • Reduces the risk of falling and improves cognitive function among older adults (That means it has an impact in preventing or slowing Alzheimer's.)
  • Relieves symptoms of depression and anxiety and improves mood
  • Prevents weight gain, promotes weight loss (when combined with a lower-calorie diet), and helps keep weight off after weight loss
  • Improves heart-lung and muscle fitness
  • Improves sleep
That's just a beginning. I heard a young man say today that when he finishes exercising  "you feel life is great. You're ready to conquer the world."

What works for me is to have a regular time and days that I exercise, so that I do it without thinking. And the time of day that works best for me, if the early morning. I do it without thinking and without letting other desires keep me from it.

Why don't you try setting up a regular schedule that works for you?
"After exercising you feel life is great, you're ready to conquer the world."

1 comment:

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