Why fitness is a necessary nutrient
Dr. James Chestnut was named chiropractor educator of the year in 2007.† He offers a video on YouTube that explains why you need to exercise and simple ways to get started.† To view it, click here.
Going from unfit to fit at any age can add years to your life and “life” to your years.
The type of activity doesn’t matter as much as staying active.† Modern living removes us from historical lifestyle activities, so for most of us activity means exercise.
If you’re 45 and you do moderate intensity activities such as walking the dog, hiking, mowing the lawn with a push mower, swimming, golfing with a pull cart, raking leaves, or easy cycling, you could add 6 years to your life expectancy.
Increase the typical intensity level to activities like speed-walking, stair-climbing, jogging or a heart-pumping game of tennis and add on 9 years.
Here’s another fact. †If three people of similar weight exercise for 50 minutes at a moderately high intensity, the least fit person will burn 250 calories, the moderately fit person about 400 calories, and the very fit person about 600 calories.† Why?† Because muscles are a lot like the Energizer bunny:
They just keep on going and going, boosting your calorie burn every day, even while you sleep.
The more muscle you have, the more calories your body burns.† The more calories that are burned daily, the longer you could live well.
Are moderate moves okay?
Any movement is better than none at all.† †You don’t have to be a fitness fanatic to benefit from physical activity. † Forget the idea of “no pain means no gain.”† The gain comes from getting off your duff and doing it.
Enjoy your exercise
Q. What’s the best kind of exercise?
A. Whatever you’ll actually do.
If you don’t enjoy it, you’ll stop doing it.† So the key is enjoyment.† If you can’t have fun doing it, at least find a way to keep it from becoming a drudge.
Do a little at a time
For example, why not stretch ten minutes when you get up, take five minutes to walk two flights of stairs at work, take a ten minute stroll at noon, then lift some light bar bells for another 10 while watching TV.† That routine gives you more than 30 minutes a day.
Make it convenient.
Many people buy fitness equipment for their home.† If itís at home, then you can do exercise no matter what the weather is outside.† Some put the equipment in front of a TV so they can watch and move at the same time.
Use the buddy system
Misery loves company (so does joy). Find someone or a group to do it with.† Or, join an on-line forum to share your commitment to keep it up.
Make it fun
Find something thatís fun to do and active.† Sports such as golf, volleyball, ping pong, badminton, tennis, and racquetball are pleasures for many.
You can work up a sweat with line, square, or ballroom dancing. Throw a Frisbee around.† Take a walk or ride a bike with a friend.† Or learn kickboxing in a class.†† The bottom line, if it’s fun youíre more likely to do it.
If you are already a gardener you know that means physical activity.† You bend over, lift, pull, push, walk about, and in general move around quite a bit.† It’s a great way to stay active, enjoy the outdoors, and see the fruits (and flowers and vegetables) of your labor.
Right now you can cross your legs and swing them, tap your figures on a desk, play with a pencil, move your jaw muscles, and swing your arms.† They are all fidgeting moves that burn calories.
Obese couch potatoes sit still longer than thinner counterparts
According to Web MD, all couch potatoes may not be created equal.† A recent study that shows the need to sit or fidget may be biological.
Researchers tracked the posture and body position of 10 obese and 10 lean self-proclaimed “couch potatoes” for 10 days. They found that, on average, lean couch potatoes stood up and moved around about two hours longer than the obese ones.
That extra fidgeting time amounts to an additional 350 calories burned per day among the lean couch potatoes.
Researchers call those extra calories burned without exercise “non exercise activity thermogenesis,” or NEAT. The results indicate NEAT may be more important than formal exercise in determining who is lean and who is obese.
“Our patients have told us for years that they have low metabolism, and as caregivers, we have never quite understood what that means — until today,” says researcher James Levine, MD, an endocrinologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., in a news release.
“The answer is they have low NEAT, which means they have a biological need to sit more, says Levine. ďA person can expend calories either by going to the gym, or through everyday activities. Our study shows that the calories that people burn in their everyday activities — their NEAT — are far, far more important in obesity than we previously imagined.”
Even in non-exercisers, fidgeting can subtract as much as 350 calories per day. But truly inactive people may have to learn the toe-tapping habit -- researchers say you’re either born with a fidgeting gene or not.
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