Monthly archive for April 2015

Benefits of Exercise

Benefits of Exercise

Exercise is the single best thing you can do for your brain in terms of mood, memory, and learning, says Harvard Medical School psychiatrist, John Ratey.  Now, more than ever, we need to stay positive, sharp and mentally focused.   These newly discovered benefits of exercise do just that: Exercise makes you happy.  According to the American Physiological Association, almost one in five adults is now on some type of prescribed medication for mental health.   Research suggests that burning off 350 calories three times a week through sustained, sweat-inducing activity can reduce the symptoms of depression about as effectively as antidepressants. That may be because exercise appears to stimulate the growth of neurons in certain brain regions damaged by depression. Exercise makes you smart.  Exercise increases the level of brain chemicals called growth factors, which help make new brain cells and establish new connections between brain cells to help us learn. 

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My Exercise Goal

My Exercise Goal

My exercise goal is to walk 10,000 steps a day. Since I usually don’t walk on Sunday, it is important for me to walk more than 10,000 steps on the other six days.  Some days I don’t feel motivated to take my walk.  On those days, I make the decision to walk to a destination, so that I must walk back home in order to get my steps.  Today, I put off my walk; I didn’t want to walk around the townhouse or drive to the church to walk on the treadmill.  The weather was beautiful and about lunch time I decided to walk to the cafeteria, eat lunch and walk home again.  The cafeteria is almost two miles away so this trip would accomplish two things:  provide a healthy lunch and complete my steps for the day. We all have days when our motivation is low and it really

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Bear with Me

Bear with Me

Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. E P H E S I A N S 4:2 The benefits of being humble, gentle and patient are generally understood, but rarely do you hear someone talk about the benefit of bearing with another person. We can all recall comments made about bearing with others that imply what a hassle or burden such an action generates; but seldom do we consider how precious it is to have people in our lives that will bear with us in love. Thinking back over the past five years since I joined First Place 4 Health, the faces of those who participated in those sessions with me come to mind, warming my heart and reminding me of how God always provides what we need.   While it’s true that learning to make healthy food choices and building exercise into my

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One Wise Choice at a Time…Before It’s Too Late

One Wise Choice at a Time…Before It’s Too Late

Celebrating Mother’s Day was always a dilemma for me. What do you give a mom who has just about everything? The one thing I truly wanted to give my mom, I could not—the gift of good health. My mother was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer in the summer of 2009.  She had been fairly active most of her life. She was a member of a mall walker’s club; she worked hard in her garden and there were some days I could not keep up with her energy. She started slowing down little by little, and in the second year after my father’s death she finally gave up her healthy lifestyle.  By the time she was diagnosed with the lung cancer, she had become very inactive.  As we met with the doctor, I asked him what we could do to beat this cancer.  Unfortunately, neither chemotherapy nor radiation would have a positive effect on

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Ten Easy Ways to Fit in Exercise

Ten Easy Ways to Fit in Exercise

Everyone is so busy, some days it is hard to find time for exercise.  However, we don’t realize how much time we spend waiting. Why not use some of that time fitting in a little exercise? When you go outside to pick up your morning newspaper, take a brisk 5-minute power walk up the street in one direction and back in the other. Cooking dinner? Do standing push-ups while you wait for a pot to boil. Stand about an arm’s length from the kitchen counter, and push your arms against the counter. Push in and out to get toned arms and shoulders. Walk around the block several times while you wait for your child to take a music lesson. As your fitness level improves, add 1-minute bursts of jogging to your walks. If you’re housebound caring for a sick child or grandchild, hop on an exercise bike or do a treadmill workout while

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