New Year - new life

  • 2010-01-28
  • By Darja Kuznecova

RIGA - Do you really not have time in your daily schedule to exercise? Too many people just say, “I need to exercise but I don’t have enough time in the day.” Or, when they do have the time they only have the energy to lie down and watch TV. Fitting fitness into the day is a challenge we all face. Exercising is tough after long hours of working at home, the office or on the road, but we still need to work out if we want to be healthy. We procrastinate and never get around to taking that first step forward. Perhaps we would if we better understood how getting fit can improve our lives.

It’s a New Year – with new possibilities. So start your healthy life right now; start your fitness exercises. The variety of sport clubs of Latvia have special promotions in January for you.
Getting fit is highly recommended as a means for increasing longevity. Healthy diet and exercise programs help us to keep our weight normal and to feel better. This can add years to our life and will make sure we feel good as those years progress.
As we take up aerobic exercise we gain cardiovascular health. The heavy breathing associated with aerobics causes our heart rate to increase, and then recover, once we stop exercising. This tones our heart muscles and increases circulation helping to prevent blockages and obstructions. A healthy heart decreases our chances for heart disease and heart attack. It also gives us more endurance and stamina. Rather than being the one walking upstairs breathless, hardly able to take another step, you can be the one taking two steps at once.

Getting fit also helps regulate your mood and fight depression with the release of endorphins, through exercise. Staying alert with improved mental function is another benefit of getting fit. Eating a well-balanced, nutritious diet helps keep us energetic and able to get through our day with vitality. Strength training is an important component to getting fit. If you include strength or resistance training you will be less likely to lose bone mass. Keeping your muscles toned gives you a lean, fit look and also keeps you strong as the years progress. Having weak muscles and bones that have lost density sets our bodies up for injury and therefore possible dependency on others.

The pain associated with osteoarthritis is something that can rule your life as you get older. If we stay fit and remain strong we have a much better chance for increased vitality and full, independent lives on into our elder years. This is an important quality that many people miss out on because they haven’t kept up with staying fit. It has been proven by doctors that people who do not have any time to exercise have bad health and pay for medicines and medical help much more than those who exercise daily.

The latest research proves that younger people, who exercise, project a healthy image and outlook that gives them the vitality to succeed. Beginning your fitness program in your teenage years gives you the foundation to age with grace and strength. There is advice to those who would like to be healthy and start with exercise.

•    Make it a daily challenge to find ways to move your body. Climb stairs if given a choice between this and escalators or elevators. Walk your dog; chase your kids; toss balls with friends, mow the lawn. Anything that moves your limbs is not only a fitness tool, it’s a stress buster. Think ‘move’ in small increments of time. Note that you should consult a fitness trainer for choosing a suitable program for exercise. Your program should be started from a beginner’s level and, step by step, increase the strain on muscles proportionally to the advanced level.

•    Complete your fitness program with weekly trips to the sauna and swimming pool. This will make your body relax and get rid of daily stress and potent respiratory viruses.

•    Protect Yourself from Pollution. If you can’t live in a smog-free environment, at least avoid smoke-filled rooms, high traffic areas, breathing in highway fumes and exercising near busy thoroughfares. Exercise outside when the smog rating is low. Exercise indoors in air conditioning when air quality is not good. Plant lots of shrubbery in your yard. It’s a good deterrent against pollution and dirt from the street. A thought for the day: ‘Smoke gets in your eyes’…and your mouth, and your nose and your lungs as do pollutants….hum the tune daily.

•    Avoid the obvious such as fried foods, burgers and other fatty meats (i.e. pork, bacon, ham, salami, ribs and sausage). Dairy products such as cheese, cottage cheese, milk and cream should be eaten in low fat versions. Nuts and sandwich meats, mayonnaise, margarine, butter and sauces should be eaten in limited amounts. Most are available in lower fat versions such as substitute butter, fat free cheeses and mayonnaise. Thought for the day: Lean, mean, fat-burning machine…. Then be one!

•    Avoid Excessive Drinking. While recent studies show a glass of wine or one drink a day (two for men) can help protect against heart disease, more than that can cause other health problems such as liver and kidney disease and cancer. Thought for the day: A jug of wine should last a long time.

•    Keep a Positive Mental Outlook. There’s a definitive connection between living well and healthfully, and having a cheerful outlook on life. Thought for the day: You can’t be unhappy when you’re smiling or singing.