Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Family Fitness

Lack of activity destroys the good condition of every human being, while movement and methodical physical exercise save it and preserve it. -Plato

Our family definitely believes in the benefits of regular exercise. Here is the basic exercise schedule
that we follow. There's a walk every Tuesday, Thursday and either Saturday or Sunday. It's about  2 miles. We enjoy our walks SO much. ( so does our dog, Liberty!) They are a great time to
fellowship or just toss a football back and forth. Sometimes our friends walk with us.
I need my walks. They are very therapeutic for me! I guard that time very carefully.

Jeff and I also stretch 3-4 times/ week. The off days we do sit-ups and other various exercises.
We also enjoy yardwork, landscaping, hiking, playing ball or riding bikes. It relieves stress and helps keep our hearts strong, our bodies limber and our minds clear.

Today it was TOO windy to walk and so Mikailah suggested that we watch our exercise videos.
It felt so good! It was fun to do something a little different and we will enjoy the benefits! Everyone was laughing and enjoying the time together.

This is always a great way for the children to burn extra energy on a rainy or snowy day.

We want to take good care of our bodies so that we can be healthy and strong; it is good stewardship to take care of our body as the temple of the Holy Spirit. One of our goals is to be strong and able to do the work that God has called us to do. Whatever that work may be.
Ministry of any kind takes effort, energy and strength; It is our desire to accomplish these tasks
with excellence.

When we exercise on a regular basis, we are also helping our children to build lifelong habits of discipline.

Listed below are the Mayo Clinic's 6 benefits to regular physical exercise.

1. Exercise improves your mood.

Need to blow off some steam after a stressful day? A workout at the gym or a brisk 30-minute walk can help you calm down.

Physical activity stimulates various brain chemicals that may leave you feeling happier and more relaxed than you were before you worked out. You'll also look better and feel better when you exercise regularly, which can boost your confidence and improve your self-esteem. Regular physical activity can even help prevent depression.

2. Exercise combats chronic diseases.

Worried about heart disease? Hoping to prevent osteoporosis? Physical activity might be the ticket.

Regular physical activity can help you prevent — or manage — high blood pressure. Your cholesterol will benefit, too. Regular physical activity boosts high-density lipoprotein (HDL), or "good," cholesterol while decreasing triglycerides. This one-two punch keeps your blood flowing smoothly by lowering the buildup of plaques in your arteries.

And there's more. Regular physical activity can help you prevent type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis and certain types of cancer.

3. Exercise helps you manage your weight.

Want to drop those excess pounds? Trade some couch time for walking or other physical activities.

This one's a no-brainer. When you engage in physical activity, you burn calories. The more intense the activity, the more calories you burn — and the easier it is to keep your weight under control. You don't even need to set aside major chunks of time for working out. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Walk during your lunch break. Do jumping jacks during commercials. Better yet, turn off the TV and take a brisk walk. Dedicated workouts are great, but physical activity you accumulate throughout the day helps you burn calories, too

4. Exercise boosts your energy level.

Winded by grocery shopping or household chores? Don't throw in the towel. Regular physical activity can leave you breathing easier.

Physical activity delivers oxygen and nutrients to your tissues. In fact, regular physical activity helps your entire cardiovascular system — the circulation of blood through your heart and blood vessels — work more efficiently. Big deal? You bet! When your heart and lungs work more efficiently, you'll have more energy to do the things you enjoy.

5. Exercise promotes better sleep.

Struggling to fall asleep? Or stay asleep? It might help to boost your physical activity during the day.

A good night's sleep can improve your concentration, productivity and mood. And you guessed it — physical activity is sometimes the key to better sleep. Regular physical activity can help you fall asleep faster and deepen your sleep. There's a caveat, however. If you exercise too close to bedtime, you may be too energized to fall asleep. If you're having trouble sleeping, you might want to exercise earlier in the day.

6. Exercise can be — gasp — fun!

Wondering what to do on a Saturday afternoon? Looking for an activity that suits the entire family? Get physical!

Physical activity doesn't have to be drudgery. Take a ballroom dancing class. Check out a local climbing wall or hiking trail. Push your kids on the swings or climb with them on the jungle gym. Plan a neighborhood kickball or touch football game. Find a physical activity you enjoy, and go for it. If you get bored, try something new. If you're moving, it counts!

Are you convinced? Good. Start reaping the benefits of regular physical activity today!

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