Get Active Stay Active

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Get Active Stay Active


Summer is almost here, so below is a quick-and-dirty primer on the reasons you should be exercising coupled with some rah-rah motivational strategies to get you going and keep you going.


Exercise benefits

l Energy increase

l Manufacture and release of endorphins, the body's feel-good chemicals

l Amplified strength and stamina

l Increase in brain power, clear thinking

l Disease and disability prevention

l Better, deeper, more restful sleep

l Alleviates depression

l Decreases stress

l Increases lean tissue and decreases body fat

l Enhances circulation

l Keeps bones strong and prevents osteoporosis

l Increases self-esteem

l Helps to break other bad habits: eating junk food, smoking, drinking alcohol to excess


Exercise myths

l Aerobic exercise is more important than strength training

l You have to be skinny to be healthy

l How you look is more important than how you feel

l You have to exercise constantly to realize any benefit

l No pain, no gain

l Laziness makes you fat – overweight is a character flaw


Exercise facts

l Amount of activity determines overall health, not body size

l Feel good, look good

l Any exercise is better than none at all

l Heredity is the single most determining factor of body size


Motivation to begin

l Use self rewards

l Toot your own horn: make a big deal of every accomplishment

l Take a class through your local parks and rec – something you've always meant to do like belly dancing or water ballet

l Start a group and perform fitness videos together

l Be active with your family – quality time like biking, hiking, swimming, even flying kites or learning to skateboard together


Motivation to continue

l Make exercise a priority (it has to be equal to brushing your teeth and putting on your shoes)

l Find the time (watch your agenda)

l Assign a time (consistency)

l Do it (make it fun)

l Make it a habit (it'll take 6-8 weeks for the habit to be ingrained, so stick with it)

l Use positive thinking (Tell yourself you're giving yourself a gift, not depriving yourself of time to watch TV)

l Reduce the obstacles (put your exercise clothes out before you go to bed, keep your bike in top condition, pay for your gym membership ahead of time)

l Hitch exercise to an essential (bike to work!)

l Have others help you be accountable

l Find a role model

l Acknowledge that there are pros and cons

l Don’t sweat the times you don't exercise – give yourself permission to skip once in a while