Physical

Back to the Basics

Do you need a “basic” fitness program? Do you need to start with something simple and doable, something where you can feel success and make progress one step at a time? Do you want a program where you can feel ‘safe’ and have confidence that you will not be putting yourself at risk for injury? Many fitness facilities these days are realizing that a huge segment of the population is looking for this type of fitness regimen. People have limitations and injuries that they are already dealing with—but they want to keep exercising. They know they need to keep exercising! Make your interest known and ask questions if you are going to check out your local gym. The professionals there will guide you to the best program for you. Look for community fitness programs, too. There may be something at your local recreation center that will be perfect for you.

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The Joys of Walking

This is the time of year when the warmer weather draws us outside. We open our front door and we just naturally want to be more active to enjoy God’s beautiful world that is coming alive with springtime. Let’s take advantage of that natural urge to ramp up our fitness, and start with the simple joys of walking! Walking. What a great sport! We can do it anywhere, anytime. We don’t have to pay to walk—no gym membership or class tuition is required. We can wear pretty much any clothing we want when we walk, so there is no money outlay for that. The only equipment we need is a good pair of walking shoes. They are sold everywhere, and these days you can look for good deals and great sales for walking shoes that you will wear not only for fitness walking, but for everyday life when you have

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Where Does Your Strength Come From?

In Ephesians 6:10 it says Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. In this Biblical context of spiritual warfare, we naturally think of this strength as mental fortitude and emotional trust in God—in effect, spiritual strength, and we certainly need that! But we need to fight the enemy of our souls by getting strong physically, too. The demands of this world require spiritual, mental, emotional and physical strength! It all goes together, as we well know from personal experience! When we feel healthy and strong physically, it spills over and gives us power and strength to face whatever comes our way in other facets of our life. Consider these benefits of physical strength training: It helps combat osteoporosis. It helps us improve our lean-to-fat body composition. Muscle is the primary calorie burner of your body. The more lean tissue you have the more calories you burn all

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Commitment

A commitment is a pledge or a promise. We make commitments big and small every day. We make a commitment to our husband and to God when we get married. We make a commitment to raise our children to know and love God. But what kind of commitments do we make to ourselves, and do we keep those commitments once we make them? Do we commit to take care of our own personal health, or do we place that low on the priority list and only think about it when life slows down, (and when is that, by the way?) Do we want to make the commitment and then sigh and say ‘I don’t have time to take care of myself?” Let me encourage you to commit to placing your personal health higher on the list—without guilt! Think about this- -when you are eating properly, exercising often, and feeding your

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Let’s Talk Flexibility

We all know that it’s a good thing to have a mindset of “being flexible” in this day and age. Plans change — weather changes our plans; we change our minds. Most of all, we need to be flexible and go with the flow to avoid conflict, stress and general aggravation. But have you considered this— physical flexibility is every bit as important as emotional and mental flexibility! One component of fitness that we often neglect is flexibility training! It may be because the benefits and results of stretching are more difficult to measure than with other types of exercise. However, stop and think about your life and your body and I bet you will agree that we all need to stretch, because this is really a case of use it or lose it. If we don’t stretch on a regular basis, we will lose range of motion in every

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What is “Pilates” anyway?

One of the popular new trends in the exercise world is “Pilates.” The Pilates method of body conditioning is a unique system of stretching and strengthening exercises developed over 90 years ago by Joseph Pilates. It strengthens and tones muscles, improves posture, provides flexibility and balance and creates a more streamlined shape. In Pilates you treat the body as an integrated whole and each exercise is designed for many muscles groups to work together to perform it. Pilates developed his exercise system in Germany in the early 1900’s. Plagued by ill health as a child, he used these exercises to strengthen his frail body. He called his method the “art of contrology” as it required great mental focus to control all of the major muscles groups. Pilates set up his first studio in New York City after immigration to the United States, and this method of fitness training has been

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Our Amazing Body

Have you ever thought about how incredible the human body is? We are fearfully and wonderfully made by God and He has given us the responsibility of taking care of the gift of our own bodies. Here are some amazing “body facts.” In a 24-hour period the blood of the body travels a total of 12,000 miles, that’s 4x the width of North America. People are the only living creatures in the world who cry tears. Our eyes never grow; our nose and ears never stop growing! The human hand contains 3 main nerves, 2 major arteries, and 27 different bones – more of the body is devoted to controlling the hands than any other part of the body. When we go to sleep and enter REM (rapid eye movement), our bodies become completely paralyzed as areas of the brain that control movement are de-activated. It is this that keeps

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The Slight Edge in Fitness

The Slight Edge in Fitness

Have you ever heard of “the slight edge principle?”  Jeff Olson, in his book The Slight Edge says that people are always looking for the big breakthrough, for an amazing quantum leap, so to speak, but he presents a “slight edge philosophy” that says small steps, compounded over time, are what make a difference in our life.  He says it is the things we do every day, the things that don’t look dramatic, and may even look like they don’t matter, that make all the difference.  And this difference can be in either a positive or a negative direction, so we need to understand this principle and live our lives by it! Let’s apply this philosophy to fitness and exercise.  Let’s say you are a person who is not exercising at all, and maybe you haven’t exercised in a long time.  You know you lack strength and endurance and that

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Exercise is the Best Medicine

Have you ever thought of exercise as a way to prevent disease? Usually, we think of heading to the doctor and looking for the answer to our health problems through taking the drugs they prescribe. However there is much we can do in the area of preventive medicine, and exercise is a key tool in this area! We need to change our mindset about exercise to understand the powerful role it plays in creating physical health in our body. It not only improves our quality of life, it can actually reduce the risk of developing many chronic degenerative diseases. Here’s one example: The American College of Sports Medicine reports that the leading health-related cause of death for both men and women is cardiovascular disease. What can we do to reduce the risk of this, personally? A key answer is exercise! According to the American Journal of Medicine, higher levels of

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Variety is the Spice of Life

Do you need a change in your exercise routine?  Sometimes we can get bored with what we are doing and we don’t work as hard because it’s the “same old thing.”  Variety is the spice of life, they say, and that is true in exercise, too.  Do you know that your muscles can actually “get bored”, too?  They respond well to change. In the exercise industry, the recommendation is to do “cross training.”  Simply put, this means that on different days, do different types of exercise.  You can vary your mode of exercise, such as walking one day, biking the next, going to a fitness class like Body & Soul, or working with the First Place Moving to the Word DVD’s, and then finishing your week with swimming on the weekend.  If that seems too complicated, even when you choose only walking you can vary things. Walk a different route

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