The sun is finally out, the colder months behind us, and summer is just right around the corner! With the weather warmer, it is the perfect time to get outside and move around. But sometimes it can be hard to take that first step, to talk yourself into going outside instead of binge watching the latest TV shows on the couch. The heat can also make you tired, creating another excuse not to go outside or to exercise. Teach yourself and those around you to use positive self-talk about fitness and exercise. Rather than focusing on the time it takes, and the drain it places on the body, focus on how you can exercise for pleasure and recreation.
Some important things to remember about exercise are:
- Your weight is much easier to control when you are active
- Physical activity can be lots of fun
- You can be with other people when you are active
- You will feel better when you are physically active
- Physical activity is good for your heart
- Physical activity is a great way to burn off steam and stress
- Physical activity helps you beat the blues
- You will feel more confident when you are more active
- You will have more energy
Ways that exercise can help are:
- Heart disease – Exercise helps reverse established disease and helps control the risk factors for heart disease (high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity). Exercise also lowers triglycerides and raises high-density lipoproteins (HDL).
- Stroke – Exercise prevents strokes and helps restore function after a stroke.
- High Blood Pressure – Exercise is a non-drug therapy for treating mild-to-moderate high blood pressure, and it helps patients who are on drug therapy for severe high blood pressure.
- Diabetes – Exercise can prevent or delay the serious vascular complications of diabetes; regular exercise can reduce the need for insulin.
- Arthritis – Exercise improves endurance, strengthens muscles, and increases joint flexibility and range of motion.
- Osteoporosis – Exercise can prevent and reverse bone loss, which can help to prevent the disabling effects of fractures and bone degeneration.
- Toxin Release – Exercise cleanses the body of unwanted toxins and cancer causing agents.
- Emotional Stability – Exercise reduces depression and anxiety. It increases feelings of well-being by causing the body to produce more endorphins. Endorphins are chemicals that stimulate the pleasure centers of the brain. Exercise improves one’s ability to handle stress, and improves self-image.
Remember, variety is the spice of life. The more things you can do to lead an active lifestyle the better. Variety means fun. When you are having fun, you are more likely to stick to your workout program. We recommend that you try lots of different exercise. This ensures that all muscle groups plus your cardiovascular system get a full workout. Areas of exercise to consider that will ensure a well-balanced fitness program are:
- Strength training
Some ideas of physical activities to do outside are:
- Go for a walk, jog or run (take your furry friend with you!)
- Play a sport like basketball, baseball, tennis, volleyball, soccer or football
- Go swimming
- Take your kids to the park and play with them, chase them around
- Plant some flowers/trees and/or mow the lawn
- Go surfing or paddle boarding
- Do a fitness scavenger hunt
- Go sailing, kayaking or take a rowing class
- Go hiking, biking or for a trail run
Acknowledge the freedom that healthy weight is giving you. Focus on the simple things such as walking in the mall, not needing to park next to the entrance when you go out, carrying in your own groceries, walking up or down stairs, or no longer being winded or hot during simple exertion.
What physical activities do you like to do?
We’d love to hear from you,