Do you remember Jane Fonda in her leotard and tights with her sweat band telling us to feel the burn or the widespread exercise advice of no pain- no gain?
No wonder we grew up hating exercise or at least thinking it was torture.😡
I dreaded the days of the physical fitness tests in PE class.
- How many sit-ups could you do in one minute while a classmate held your ankles?
- How long could you hang from a bar with your arms flexed?
- And my least favorite… how far could you run in 12 minutes? For me it was not very far before asthma kicked in.
I never ranked high on these tests, and I remember the soreness for days after.
Thankfully, we know a lot more about exercise today. You don’t have to do boot camps or crazy cardio to be in shape. Can I get an AMEN! 🙌🏻
As we age, strength training, flexibility and balance actually become more important than endurance cardio. The good news is that you can sneak these activities in throughout the day without ever having to put on a “workout outfit.”
You have to create a habit before you can improve it, so it’s best to start small.
If you did five mini workouts a day for 5 minutes each, you would get 25 minutes in without having to talk yourself into it.
I recommend 5 types of exercise:
1- STRETCH Choose some simple yoga poses to stretch your muscles before you get out of bed. Here’s some great ones to choose from.
2- STEPS Take a walk after lunch to wake you up. Start with a smaller goal than the 10K steps, so you have time for the other types of exercise.
3- STRENGTH These can be body weight exercises that you remember from dear old PE class, or you can add some hand weights if you need more.
- Chest/ Arms: Push-ups (against wall, on your knees, full plank), arm circles, bicep curls
- Core: sit-ups, crunches, standing abs, bridges
- Leg work chair squats, wall sits, side leg raises, lunges
S- SWEAT Get your heart rate up and sweat a little. This can be some dancing to your favorite tunes, jumping rope, jogging, jumping jacks, hula hooping, or playing an outdoor game.
S- STABILITY You’ve probably seen an elderly family member decline after a fall. You have to fight for your balance and stability by working on it. Try yoga balancing poses like tree, chair, or warrior 2. For fun, see if you can pass the 60 second old man challenge. These are a great thing to do at the end of the day before you get in bed.
You’d be surprised how five minutes a day on each of these can make a difference.
Pick one to focus on this week, set an alarm on your phone, and do it every day for 5 minutes after a normal everyday habit like brushing your teeth or checking the mail.
Comment and tell me which one you’re working on first!
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