Exercise – cue the groaning. Most people don’t like even the thought of “exercise” regardless of how many times doctors, health “experts”, and all those fitness ads bombard us with the necessity of it. Exercise, however, at its core is simply movement. For those who have lived outside the US, this isn’t a chore for people, it is simply life. They walk to the store, plant their gardens, and live an active lifestyle by their everyday lives. Ever heard “lay down and die”? Well, that is true. It takes movement for life to sustain itself. Muscles must be moved or they atrophy. Oxygen must be pumped through the system to maintain brain function. Toxins need to be sweated out or carried through blood and oxygen. This is why getting your cardio up is so important. But what is up? To maintain health, we simply need to move “enough”. Daily maintenance can be as simple as walking to the store, standing in your kitchen cooking a healthy meal, doing laundry, and other daily activities. It is when we sit at our desks, sit in our cars, go through the drive through and then sit on our couches all night that we have a problem. Then we have to replace daily living that is natural in other cultures with the dreaded “exercise”.
So if that is your life and you need to add movement to your day because it doesn’t naturally fit in, then find ways that make it enjoyable. Take the stairs at work. Take a walk in the sunshine when you get home. Find a hobby that includes movement such as gardening or dancing. If that still doesn’t work for you then start slow. Did you know that for every hour of TV there are about 15 minutes of commercial? Why not stand up every time one comes on and walk or jog in place for one or two shows a night. Let’s get real, there is always a way to figure out how to move. Sometimes it is just a matter of not doing things the easy way. Once you start you will find that you feel better and actually want to move more. You can do it! And if you don’t, well, hope you have good health insurance (heh).