Last year I attended a certified lifestyle coach training program conducted by the CDC under their initiative to combat the growing epidemic of diabetes.
The program was geared toward teaching pre-diabetic patients to make lifestyle changes to prevent them from becoming a full blown diabetic. We were taught in this course to shy away from using the word exercise, and replace it with the term physical activity instead. Their logic was that people are more likely to participate in something that is called physical activity than exercise, sort of like how people don’t want to be buried in a grave yard anymore but rather in a memorial garden. Regardless of the logic, it is the current state of affairs, and if calling it physical activity instead of exercise will help somebody be more proactive about taking care of their health then I can support it.
Exercise or physical activity should be part of our daily routine, as I believe it is essential to living a healthier and more vibrant life. It’s benefits have been proven over and over with numerous clinical studies. I live a very busy lifestyle, as do most other people in this crazy world we live in today, and I strive every day to include exercise as a part of my daily routine. I believe you can do this as well and these recommendations can help!
First change your attitude about exercise! Unless you have a major physical disability, exercise is not that hard. As I recently told the “Fine in 49” class that I am teaching, it’s a matter of having the will to do so. Will is the faculty by which a person decides on and initiates action. As a famous athletic company once said, “Just Do It!” Second plan for it, and schedule it even! Are we so busy that we can’t even carve out 30 minutes for physical activity? Most people spend much more time than that watching television every day. If you can’t turn the TV off, exercise while you’re watching. Where there’s a will, there’s a way! Third, acknowledge that exercise really can be fun. There are many physical activities that we can include our family or friends in. I have a pre-diabetic client that on most evenings can be found with her family riding bikes together. I tend to work out alone most of the time because it’s a great stress reliever for me, but I also enjoy long walks along our country road with my family. I recently went hiking in the mountains, something that was a tremendous amount of fun for me; however, if I was not consistently physically active, I would not have been able to enjoy those beautiful mountain trails.
If you need a little motivation to help you get started with an exercise or fitness plan, then all it should take is a quick look around at the all the unhealthy people that surround you. Sadly they are everywhere today. Also think about your friends, colleagues, or family that may have died or become disabled way earlier than they should have because they didn’t take care of their bodies with physical activity. Look at the diabetes epidemic we are facing today in the United States and even in other parts of the world. I have no doubt in my mind that making physical activity or exercise a part of your daily routine can make a difference in all of these cases. I want to encourage all of you who may be thinking, “Well I’m too old to exercise or I’m not physically able to exercise” to not let that discourage you from starting a fitness program of your own today. If a 75 year old widow lady can start walking 30 minutes a day and lifting weights then why can’t you? If Rosie, a lady with debilitating arthritis, can start lifting small 1 pound weights every day to strengthen her muscles and bones, what’s preventing you from starting a program? It doesn’t matter your age or your disability, there are a variety of different physical activities that you can get involved in, so don’t wait another day. Get started today living a healthier and more vibrant life. I understand that everybody’s situation is different and that you may have some issues where some types of physical activity or exercise could cause you harm, so please consult with your health professional before starting any type of exercise program. Let’s get moving, let’s get healthy, and let’s get happy!
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