Continue having conversations with your kids and educating them on healthy habits. Instead of looking at the calories burned while they play sports, think about the long term effects unhealthy foods can have on them. Think about the message you … Continue reading
Over the years I have tried to instill in my children the lesson that giving does not always mean receiving in return. Perhaps in the past they were too young, or there wasn’t a strong enough reason or passion … Continue reading
If you are like most people you don’t like working out. We need to change the way we look at exercise, and start having more fun being physically active, rather than dreading the thought of it. Formal exercise in a … Continue reading
It has been four months since I’ve last sat down to write a post. How can that be? Where did the time go? I spent the last four months nannying for an infant whose parents were visiting scholars to the … Continue reading
This title has a lot of different meanings, but what I am referring to here specifically is overall health. I have driven myself nuts in the last year to ensure everything my family eats and does is healthy. I … Continue reading
I joined the local gym last August in an attempt to combat my anxiety and in general, my mental health, as well as to keep physically fit. I knew if I paid the money up front for one year, I would hold myself accountable to going most days of the week. I notice when I skip a day or two I am short tempered and irritable. Anyhow, in the eight months since I have been going to the gym these are some of the “motivators” I hear during class:
“It’s almost summer. Let’s get bikini ready.”
“It’s almost tank top season. Let’s pump up those arms.”
“It’s almost shorts season. Let’s work on those legs.”
“We work out so we can eat that cake/drink that wine.”
“Let’s burn off those extra calories from the weekend.”
“Let’s burn off those calories we ate this week from Thanksgiving/Christmas/Passover.”
Why do people exercise? Work out? Participate in sports or any physical activity? Is it out of vanity? Is it to look good? Maybe. Is it so they can eat whatever/whenever they want? Maybe. Society/social media tends to focus on how we are supposed to LOOK, instead of on how we should FEEL inside (emotionally and physically). This needs to change. Not every person is ever going to be a size 2, nor should they be. That is below the norm and for some people, that is not a healthy size.
Let’s face it. Some people that go to the gym, are never going to wear a bikini, tank top, or shorts. And if they choose to, and they are not what society deems a “beach body”, I applaud them for having great self confidence. It doesn’t matter what one looks like, but how one feels inside. Physically. Emotionally. Spiritually. I believe a lot of gym goers, like myself, are at the gym because they want to be healthy. They are not at the gym striving for a “beach body”. Well, I’m not, anyway. I go to release tension, keep my anxiety at bay, and stay heart healthy.
Physical activity promotes good health in many ways. In an earlier post I wrote about the effects of exercise on mental health. We can physically see what exercise does to the outside of the body (tones muscles/keeps figures slim), but do we really know what it does to the inside of our body? Here are twelve effects physical activity has on the inside of the body:
1. Boosts high-density lipoprotein (HDL), or “good,” cholesterol and decreases unhealthy triglycerides. This helps the blood flow smoothly and decreases the risk of cardiovascular disease.
2. Delivers oxygen and nutrients to the tissues and helps the cardiovascular system work more efficiently.
3. Boosts the immune system.
4. Significantly reduces the risk of developing high blood pressure and can help to lower blood pressure in those who already have high blood pressure.
5.Prevents and helps control type 2 diabetes. Exercise helps insulin to work better and also makes the cells more sensitive to the effects of insulin.
6. Aids in digestion and promotes regular bowel movements.
7. Helps to prevent the build-up of plaque on the walls of arteries decreasing the risk of heart disease.
8. Weight-bearing exercises help preserve bone mass and thus protects against osteoporosis.
9. Builds and strengthens muscles, which can protect the bones from injury, and support and protect joints affected by arthritis. Strong muscles also give stability and improve balance and coordination.
10. Lubricates the joints, and reduces joint pain and stiffness. It also helps people with arthritis by increasing flexibility and muscle strength.
11. Improves respiratory efficiency.
12. Improves quality of life. Decreases risk of strokes, cancers, diabetes, heart disease. Slows the aging process and allows us to live longer.
Some of my friends are exercise instructors. I hope they still will be after this post. I am just trying to point out another way social media influences all of us, especially women. We all have to love the body we have, even the parts we don’t like. Big calves. Big butt. Wide hips. Flat chest. Round tummy. We need to stop focusing on what we wished we looked like and accept the body we have. Forget about burning calories and toning our bodies so we’ll look good in a bikini, tank top, shorts. Focus on how physical activity will make us FEEL. How it will prolong our lives. I hope to live a long time. I’ve only been given one body to live in, and I am going to do all I can to take care of it INSIDE and OUT!
Most days I am at the gym I find myself laughing at some point. Usually at myself for messing up on the routine in Body Combat or Piyo, but sometimes at others. I know, not very nice. Sometimes I just … Continue reading
In order to begin a healthy lifestyle, one needs to start somewhere and start small. It seems that people feel they need to make big changes to see big results, but big results will happen with small steps. So whether … Continue reading
Depression is difficult. Not just for the person experiencing the depression, but for those around them. I have had bouts of depression as I assume many people have, but for the most part my depression episodes were short lived. I … Continue reading
Healthy living encompasses not only the physical body, but the mind as well. Mental health plays just as important role in one’s overall health and happiness, and needs to be treated just the same. Below is a recent submission to … Continue reading
What is the proper fuel before exercise? How much fuel before exercise? How much time before exercising should I be fueling up? Ugh. So confusing! It doesn’t help that I am not a breakfast person. And I am definitely not … Continue reading
Most mornings when my alarm goes off at 7:30 I get right out of bed because I know I have to get the kids breakfast, make lunches, and get them on the bus. Then I hit the gym. Today … Continue reading
I remember it being so easy to stay fit as a child. I spent most of my time outdoors. I played organized sports, but that was only one or two days a week for an hour at at time. I … Continue reading
My son started Kindergarten this year and I was thrilled to find out he would be participating in Physical Education classes, as well as music and art. In the past Kindergartners were not given the opportunity to participate in P.E. … Continue reading