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Monthly Archives: March 2017

Conquering Stress with Fitness

There are a number of reasons we have for not exercising. Maybe you are turned off from your prior experience with a fitness routine. Perhaps you became sore from working out too hard, didn’t know the correct technique and ended up hurting yourself, or felt intimidated by the hard bodies at the gym. The main reason may simple by time; with your busy schedules you may feel that you cant devote the proper amount of time to see and feel the benefits of exercise and that this will take away from your clients. In truth the psychological benefits that you will feel will actually benefit your work and make you more productive.

If getting in shape, losing weight, and feeling better are your fitness goals, you have to make exercise part of your routine. In order to achieve results, it has to be planned into your day much like your work schedule.

Whether you’re 30 or 90 years old, the time is now to begin an exercise program. Some of you may think that you’re too old to exercise but that’s a fallacy. A study was conducted by Tufts University where participants, ages 87 to 96, went on a strength training program. Much to their amazement, they all showed vast improvement in strength and vitality. Exercise can reduce many of the adverse effects of aging. Exercise will raise your metabolism and increase muscle mass while lowering body fat. Through exercise you’ll also notice an improvement in motor skills and greater flexibility.

While the physical benefits of exercise are well known an even greater value may be the psychological benefits that a sensible fitness routine can bring. You’ll see an increase in self esteem and have a better outlook towards life. It will also help ease depression and relieve stress and anxiety. You’ll notice improved energy, concentration and a more relaxed sleep.

There are two forms of exercise, aerobic and strength training. Aerobic exercise is defined as anything that requires oxygen to move the large muscle groups of the body. Some examples include: indoor and outdoor biking, rowing, walking, jogging, and swimming.

Aerobic exercise gets your heart in better shape. This will help when you are playing with your children, running for the bus, or washing your car. This is called functional fitness. Being functionally fit keeps your heart and lungs healthy, while making every day tasks easier. Being in better aerobic condition is also important for lowering stress. Haven’t you heard the saying, “walk it off,” after an upsetting moment?

While aerobic exercise is important, I certainly don’t want to overwhelm you with the notion of it. You can start off with 5 minutes and work up to 25 or 30 minutes a day. If you like, divide that time into two parts with15 minutes here and 15 minutes there.

When it comes to aerobic exercise, you know that you are exercising at the right level if you can carry on a conversation while doing it. If you are too breathless to talk, then you are exercising too hard. On the other hand, if you can sing during aerobic exercise, the intensity is not hard enough.

Chest And Upper Back

The more familiar you are with the muscles you’re working, the better you’ll be able to judge what’s needed to make improvements. In this article we’ll get to know the muscles that make up the chest and upper back.
Although they are two distinct areas, the chest and the upper back will be considered together because achieving a muscular balance between them is crucial, particularly in relation to maintaining good posture. Creating an imbalance between the two is likely to result in injury.
The main muscles found in the chest and uper back are as follows:
1. Pectoralis major – these are the large chest muscles found to either side of the breastbone. Its main job is to bring the upper arm inwards across the body, a movement that is known as horizontal adduction.
2. Latissimus dorsi – this is the largest back muscle that runs from the lower back to the upper arm bone. It pulls the upper arm towards the body and acts as an internal rotator of the upper arm.
3. Trapezius – this muscle runs from the mid spine to the shoulder and then to the neck. Its main role is to faciltiate movement of the shoulder blades.

About Walking for Wellness

Now validated, as a vigorous fitness activity walking has become America’s most popular physical activity with over 20-million people stepping out regularly. Studies abound touting the benefits of walking: including weight loss, lowered risk of stroke or heart disease and improved mental well-being. While it may sound trite, 30-minutes of walking a day will keep the doctor away.

Be sure to record your walking activity beginning on the very first day. Find a notebook, a journal, or a computer program where you can record your time and distance each day. This may sound silly the first week when you are taking 5-minute walks, but very soon you will rejoice at your progress if you have a record of where you began.

To achieve maximum benefit from this walking program, you will need a good pair of soft athletic walking shoes, preferably with ankle support. I suggest you get these prior to surgery so you don’t have the “no shoes” excuse to put-off your walking program. Give them to yourself as a gift acknowledging your bravery and courage to make this positive change in your life.

Next, plan where you will walk. Raise your hand if you already own a treadmill! Mine was stored in a forgotten corner of the basement, bought with the best intention, but abandoned for a number of excuses. Get that old friend out and put it where you’ll use it. most treadmills for home use are rated at a 250-pound weight limit. Fresh out of gastric bypass surgery, most of us exceed that limit. Fitness equipment manufacturers say that if the weight limit is exceeded, but at a slow pace for short duration, the treadmill should not be damaged. I say, take your chances and walk on the treadmill. It won’t take long before you drop below the weight limit and in the meantime you are becoming stronger and fitter by taking short walks on the machine.

If your climate and neighborhood are equitable plan a walking route out-of-doors. Prior to surgery measure your route by the quarter mile. One determined patient I know walked one driveway further each day until she made it all the way around the block. Counting driveways is how she marked her progress. Good for her!

Do you prefer to walk in the climate-controlled mall? Plan a walking route there – just be sure to swiftly step past the bakery and candy store. Many malls have early hours when people can gather and fitness walk without having to navigate around shoppers.

For best success sip water throughout your walk. Wear comfortable clothing for easy movement. Avoid exercising in extreme weather – too hot or very cold.

Be Fun with Exercise Equals

Biking

Biking is another excellent way to get a child to exercise. From first learning on a tricycle to the celebrated arrival of the two-wheeler, biking is something that can be viewed as an achievement, as well as an easy way to increase a child’s physical activity. Biking helps children develop coordination, balance, work the back muscle groups that aid good posture, and build up leg muscles. Moreover, biking gives children an easy way to travel to their friends’ houses and assert independence–an added incentive that will get those legs, and lungs, pumping! As nine-year old Michelle Yuen says, “I love riding my bike. It’s so much fun. I ask my mom, and then I can bike down to my friend’s house.”

Rollerblading

Bikes aren’t the only wheels that kids can use to rev up their heart rate. Rollerblading is an activity that can be done indoors, and out, and an activity the whole family can join in. Whether in an indoor skating rink, or just playing by the sidewalk, rollerblading is an activity that is fun for the children and healthy as well.

A Walk with Fido

Another exercise that can be performed daily by a child is none other than the traditional walk with the dog. Jogging, or even walking at a brisk pace, with the dog, floods the body with endorphins and a slew of other health benefits related to exercise. Bring along a stick to throw to Fido, and the workout has becomes even more intense. What’s more: walking the dog everyday is a sure-fire way to maintain regular exercise, which is much more advantageous, in the long run, than intermittent exercising.

Yoga for Kids

Yoga has taken America by storm in recent years. From celebrity yogis like Madonna to stay-at-home moms, yoga has proven to be a way to tone and “center” the mind and body. Yoga is beginning to creep into the school gym programs, too. Just as many high schools throughout the nation have begun offering yoga as a gym option, many “yoga for kids” programs have sprung up as well. Yoga aims to tone the muscle groups, aid coordination, and improve flexibility through stretching. In addition, it has been said that a key principle in yoga, correct breathing, seems to alleviate stress in children.