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Have an active Holiday Season…

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You’ve got Turkey’s to baste, presents to wrap, shopping to do, work to finish up and a house to clean before guests arrive. Does it sound like the holidays yet?? And perhaps you are surrounded by lovely christmas cookies that some sweet friends have made for you. And perhaps you are feeling guilty for eating a few more than you had said that you would. Well first of all DON’T FEEL GUILTY! Feeling guilty over something like eating has never made anybody any healthier. Nor has it ever brought anybody closer to their health goals. You know what helps people feel good about themselves, feel more alert, and brings them closer to their health goals? I’m sure you’ve guessed it… MOVEMENT! Exercise if you will although I shy away from that word since to some it is a negative word. It is one of the best things you can do for your health PERIOD. Perhaps THE best thing you can do for your health. But then we have the burning question that is especially relevant this week…. When will I realistically have time???!! 

Many people envision exercise as a minimum seventy minute time commitment involving getting gym stuff together, driving to the gym, do the work out/ class, showering, and changing. “SIGH!” You think to yourself on your commute home…”Forget it! Not today.” And we all have these days. But I have some good news for you… You don’t need to commit 70 minutes of your day to exercise. In fact, you don’t need to do much at all in one session. There has been much research done on the benefits of SHORT BOUT EXERCISE and the findings are wonderful. Research has found that individuals who participate in short walks, taking the stairs, doing quick ten minute work outs a couple or three times a day, or finding creative ways to get more steps in daily, are living longer with healthier blood pressure and lower risk of getting heart disease. Just google “short bout exercise” and you will see the pages upon pages of news articles and research on this topic. The general consensus seems to be making a goal of thirty minutes per day of “activity” five days a week which again can include walking at a brisk pace and using the stairs. You will also find LOADS of ideas as to HOW you can increase your activity for the day. The ideas include everything from doing a lap around your house before you go to the mail box, to marching in place while you brush your teeth. I’d also like to throw out a suggestion myself, in those weeks/ days when I know a “work out session” just won’t happen, I like to start my day with a seven minute work out I found on youtube that does not require any weights or equiptment.  Just roll out of bed and GO! And I’ll try to squeeze in another seven minute work out a couple times later in the day too.

My favorite quote from the Huffington Post article that I read this morning regarding short bout exercise was this “Brad Cardinal, professor of exercise and sport science at Oregon State University, said in a statement. ‘Making physical activity a way of life is more cost-effective than an expensive gym membership. You may be more likely to stick with it, and over the long term, you’ll be healthier, more mobile and just feel better all around.'” VERY TRUE! Although gyms are great for fitness they are not the only way to get fit.

Have an active Friday 🙂