Bringing Wellness Full Circle

Posts tagged ‘Fitness’

The Alphabet of Health–E is for Exercise

I know, I know, it’s probably corny and maybe unnecessary, but maybe not… E is for EXERCISE, and most of us don’t get enough of it. Just look at the shape of our bodies, our inability to go up three flights of steps without feeling we are dying, and the muffin tops that are popping up everywhere, and not much more needs to be said…

EXERCISE can take many forms, from structured programs with a personal trainer to simply going down and up the steps to your basement. Most of us seem to think we don’t have time to workout, and I get that, especially with how busy our lives have become: commute to work, kids’ activities, social life… but exercise does not have to take forever in order to be beneficial. Actually, if you just get off the couch, you already are ahead of the game. You can divide your workouts throughout the day/week in short, little bouts of exercise, like 10 minutes first thing in the morning or right when you come home from work.

You should try to incorporate about 90 minutes of strength training a week and 30 minutes of cardio a day. When you can give it the time, work out hard with interval training, alternating weights and cardio, easy and hard and give your body something to remember the next day.  But sometimes you just don’t have enough hours in the day. Don’t just throw it all away, though.  Movement on those days can be as simple as a quick walk at lunchtime, and using the time when you are on the phone to do squats or lunges.  It is truly so that you make time for what matters to you…

Another great factor in movement is something called NEAT, which stands for NON EXERCISE  ACTIVITY THERMOGENESIS. This is the energy that we expand for everything we do that is not sleeping, eating or typical exercise type activities. It can range from typing to fidgeting, raking, folding the laundry, etc. All these simple activities increase your metabolic rate (how fast you burn calories). So get up to change the channel instead of using the remote, and walk your question over to your co-worker instead of emailing her. Laugh a lot more! Sing, color, scrub. All these activities may not give you a great physique and bulging muscles, but they will help you control your weight.



The Alphabet of Health–C

C is for Core

You hear it everywhere: the core is the powerhouse of the body. If you have a weak core, you can’t do anything, ya di ya di ya…  But you know what? It’s true! You really do need a strong core for everyday life, for avoiding injuries, for living your life fully. So let’s talk about it a bit today.

Basically, your core is the muscular system that provides strength to stabilize and move all of your body parts. It is the link between the upper and lower extremities. It includes:

  • your abs (upper, lower and obliques, internal and external),
  • your hips  which have 29 muscles that are responsible for stabilizing, transferring and producing/reducing force when your feet are on the ground.
  • your back: its muscles are responsible for supporting posture and creating motion, coordinating muscle actions and maintaining stability.

The center of your body (your core) basically is responsible for the process and the outcome of any type of movement or activity. You can’t throw a ball without a core, nor can you pick up your kid without your core. So, no matter how hard you train your biceps and thighs, if your core is weak, you’re screwed…

Bottom line: Training your core MUST be a fundamental part of your exercise program!


Tag Cloud

%d bloggers like this: