Living the WELL Life

Move It – Or Lose It!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Exercise is an important part of what I do. Regardless of what kind of a problem a person has, if they can move any part of their body, exercise will make them feel better.  Why? Because exercise gives you happy hormones!  A lack of exercise makes us more tired.  Energy creates energy! I am not talking about pounding your body to the point of exhaustion which is unproductive.  There is no reason that extreme punishing workouts have to be experienced for good health; this is true in both exercise and diet. But you do have to move your body.

Most of the people who come to me for training have difficulty with exercise the first week or so.  They complain they don’t have the energy.  After a couple of weeks they notice that instead of feeling tired after training, they feel invigorated.  This is a very common result – any trainer will tell you the same.  The reasons are simple.

The body is designed to move.  When we don’t move, the body loses muscle, endurance, co-ordination, flexibility, the capacity to relax and aerobic condition.  Each of these things is essential for good health and the enjoyment of life.   The fact is that aside from diet there is nothing more important than exercise for physical health.

Just consider for a moment the benefits of healthy lungs.  When we are performing useful exercise, we increase the amount of oxygen in the body.

Oxygen is one of our most important nutrients.  When we increase oxygen, the body and mind improve dramatically in function. Other nutrients are used more efficiently and we increase our capacity to relax. 

The heart deserves a special mention here too.  The heart is a muscle.  Like all muscles it becomes stronger when exercised.  When the heart is not challenged it becomes flaccid and unable to cope with dramatic changes in blood chemistry, emotion or physical demand.

Part of the problem with exercise is that people tend to think of it as work.  The only work is getting started and keeping it up for the first month; after that you will be doing it because it makes you feel good.  Not exercising at all is simply a very bad habit and contributes to weight gain.

It is a self-fulfilling prophecy; I’m too tired, I can’t get up off the couch, it’s hopeless; guess what? When the lazy old flaccid monkey that operates this mantra shows up, it’s always true. The more you sit on the couch, the less likely you will be to get up. 

It takes one superhuman lunge to change it all.  My Weight Loss Nature’s Way course that I am launching on the World Wide Web at the end of November is not about having fabulous abs in ten days or losing twenty pounds in a week.  It’s about getting your weight back to a healthy and sustainable goal that makes you feel fantastic.

Muscle needs calories to survive.  The more you build muscle the faster you will lose weight and the better it will stay off.  The more muscle you have, the speedier the metabolism.  Simply put bigger muscles burn more calories than smaller ones, even during sleep. 

Remember, the older you get, the harder it is to maintain your weight by simply restricting what you eat.  Walking briskly for half an hour daily not only consumes a couple of hundred calories, it boosts your metabolic rate for the rest of the day.  Find yourself a walking buddy and have fun.

As we all know movement throughout the day, every day is so important to our general health and wellbeing.  The negative effects a sedentary lifestyle can have on our organs and internal health can be profound.  Using the ten short minute exercise video that is included in my course will bring awareness to your overall body and how wonderful it feels to breathe deeply and stretch.

This will create a feeling of internal space that our organs require to work at their optimum.  I cannot stress enough the importance of being active at regular intervals throughout your day (every day), and would encourage you to integrate the necessary measures throughout your day both at work and at home.

Weight gain and obesity are obvious effects of a sedentary lifestyle. However the effects of limited physical activity go much further than this with regards to metabolism. An enzyme called Lipoprotein Lipase stops being produced after 60-90 minutes of inactivity. This enzyme is vital to good health, it is responsible for the metabolism of fats and sugars in the blood. An absence dramatically increases the likelihood of diabetes developing. It also causes a reduction in HDL (the good cholesterol which breaks down fat build up in arteries and blood vessels) which contributes to the build-up of arteriosclerosis, increasing the risk of heart disease, and strokes, also dramatically reducing quality of life. 

Benefits of Stretching
As you age, your muscles tighten and range of motion in the joints is minimized.  A regular stretching programme can help lengthen your muscles and make daily activities easier.  If you are doing strength training exercises, running or cycling regularly it is important to incorporate stretching into your exercise routine to avoid the shortening of the muscles.

The most important benefit of stretching is that you are able to increase your range of motion, which means your limbs and joints can move further before an injury occurs.  Also stretching decreases muscle soreness and ensures that your muscles and tendons are in good working order.  The more conditioned your muscles and tendons are, the better they can handle the rigors of sport and exercise and the less likely they will become injured.
Ancient Eastern disciplines state that our good health and wellbeing come from the inside.  Our inner organs need energy or ‘Chi’ and space to function at their optimum. 

In my chiball classes I teach clients how they can stimulate this chi with deep breathing and by stretching and moving.  Moving muscles slowly and mindfully relaxes and loosens them allowing improved ‘Chi’ to flow which restores and renews energy.  These simple stretching exercises release tension in the muscles and renew your body.

The ten minute workout with my Weight Loss Nature’s Way programme is a unique set of movements and exercises that are practiced synchronizing the breath with each movement.   This liberates blocked ‘chi’ or energy, improves breathing and lung capacity, improves circulation and vitality, releases muscle tension and stiffness and overall enhances concentration, balance and co-ordination.

Please incorporate this into your daily routine; you will be the better for it.

In good health
Marlene x


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