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Health and Fitness Blog 101

Let's Get Healthy Together

Break Free From a Life With Limits

Posted by larends on August 17, 2014
Posted in Health and Fitness 

100_0422Do you ever feel like you can’t do things you would like to do, because of your health?  There are so many fun, exciting things to do when you are in good shape.  When we went to the Grand Canyon, my husband, son and I hiked down into the Grand Canyon.  I hiked down to the 3 mile point, because they recommend that you don’t hike all the way to the bottom and back up in one day.  My husband and son wanted to keep going, so they hiked to the bottom and back up.  I may have been able to make it all the way, but I wasn’t sure if I was in good enough shape.  The top of the Grand Canyon is at a higher elevation, so it’s hard to breathe when you hike back up.  It’s like climbing a mountain.  I had to stop several times on the way up to rest.  I missed out on going to the bottom with my family.  If we go back to Grand Canyon, I will train beforehand, so my lung capacity can handle it.

146When my husband and I went to Hawaii we hiked 2 miles to a beautiful waterfall.  There was no way to get to this waterfall other than hiking.  We also went through a bamboo forest on the hike, which was really cool to see.  If I hadn’t been in good shape we wouldn’t have been able to see this waterfall and bamboo forest.

 

 

137If you exercise on a regular basis, you will be able to enjoy a lot more and won’t miss out on things because you are out of shape.  I’ve never enjoyed running, but it can definitely improve your lung capacity so you won’t be out of breath so quickly.  I recently read an article about how to train for a 5K.  The key is to start off slowly by walking for 3 minutes and running for 30-60 seconds. Then you keep alternating between walking and running in these intervals.  You do this for a few weeks and gradually start running a little longer each time.  This is a great way to ease into it and may even make it more enjoyable.  Maybe that is why I never liked running.  I didn’t ease into it.  I’m going to give it a try and hopefully improve my lung capacity in the process.

When I was walking the other day I had so much energy that I actually felt like running.  It made me think of a self-propelled vacuum or lawn mower.  If you’ve ever used one of these, you know that there is a big difference between a regular vacuum or lawn mower and a self-propelled one.  The self-propelled machine is way easier to push.  That’s how you feel when you’ve been working out on a regular basis.  Exercise gets way easier and you can do it without much effort.

Getting started is the biggest hurdle to start exercising and eating healthy.  Once you start, you just need to make it a regular thing and soon you’ll feel better and be able to do all the things you love.  If you don’t want to do it for yourself, do it for your kids and grandkids.  The healthier you are, the more things you can do with them and the longer you’ll be around for them.

Enjoy Summer While Getting Fit

Posted by larends on August 4, 2014
Posted in Health and Fitness 

walk on the beachI love summer!  Summer is the season that I get the most out of exercising.  I love being outdoors and in Michigan there are so many beautiful places to get out and exercise.  It’s relaxing to take long walks on the beach when it’s warm and watch the waves on the lake.  On my lunch breaks I often go to a local park on a small lake and walk on the walking path.  The path has flowers that smell so good that they brighten my day.  I read recently that exercising outside can significantly improve your mood.  It definitely improves mine.  I leave walking shoes in my car, so I can walk on my lunch.  There are times when I may not feel like walking, but I’m always glad when I do and I feel refreshed and ready to get back to work in the afternoon.

I also like to exercise in the pool in the summer.  When I do my pool exercises, my legs always get tight and toned.  One of the easiest exercises I do in the pool is the bicycle.  I use an inner tube around my waist (you can use any flotation device) and peddle my legs like I’m riding a bike.  I also add in some leg kicks.  These are easy exercises and provide a great low impact workout for those that have difficulty with other exercises.  Swimming is excellent exercise too and provides great cardio.  If you get tired quickly you can swim a lap and then do leg lifts, squats, lunges or other exercises in between.  This is a great example of interval training and is even better than simply doing cardio.

Riding bikes is another great summer exercise.  There are several bike trails in Michigan that provide safe, scenic places to ride.  Hiking is a fun family activity that can be a fun adventure that won’t even seem like exercise.  Living close to Lake Michigan gives me plenty of places to hike, like the dunes by the beach or any of the parks or woods in the area.

All the summer sports can help you feel like a kid again and you’ll have fun with your friends while giving you a good healthy workout.  Play soccer, baseball, basketball, or other sports with your kids to stay active.

Your health is more than just the physical aspects.  Getting out in the fresh air and enjoying nature can improve your mood, which is also important to your health.  There are so many things these days that cause stress and anxiety.  Getting outside and away from all the technology can reduce that stress.  We spend so much time on our phones, computers, ipods and other gadgets, that we use up our free time and wonder why our weekends go by so quickly.  Take some time away from those time wasters and get back to basics.  We are almost addicted to checking our email, Facebook, and searching the internet.  Many people spend more time on their computer and phone than watching T.V.  Watching television can also consume your time.  If you add up all the time you spend on your computer, cell phone, ipod and watching television, I’m sure you can spare 30 minutes a day doing something active instead.  Trust me, you’ll be glad you did.