Exercise. A Great idea at all times of the year!

Chances are, you know how important exercise is for maintaining and sustaining good health. In fact, I would call it the closest thing to a "Fountain of Youth" as I know of!

As the Holiday season approaches, and things get busier, you might be tempted to say "I'll start working out in January." But, may I encourage you that it's important year round? It takes about 30 minutes on most (about 5) days per week to gain real traction and experience the best benefits from exercise.

Here are 4 types of movement/exercise that are important:

1) low intensity movement - This is the "just being active" category. You have heard things like "take the stairs", "park farther away", take a walk in the middle of the day, etc. This would fit into this category where you are getting up and moving throughout the day. I have a fitness tracker and I aim for 10 flights of stairs and 10,000 steps every day. That keeps me active. This isn't the stuff that makes you look like a fitness model, but it helps keep you from getting old and stiff :)

2) Lift heavy things. We are designed for short bursts where we lift heavy objects. This means, squatting, deadlifting, pushing and pulling heavy weight. About 2 days per week, use heavy weights. If you are a woman, don't be afraid of "bulking up", physiologically, this just isn't a reality for most women. In fact, heavy weights are often the key to dropping pounds and leaning out.

3) Focus on Flexibility and mobility. Mobility or Dynamic movement focuses on movements that build in range of motion. You are in motion as you work on your flexibility. It's different from static stretching where you hold a stretch. Both types of exercise have flexibility benefits, and some of each should be incorporated into your exercise routine. 5-10 minutes per day or 2 sessions of about 30 minutes per week of something like yoga are great ways to make sure you keep yourself flexible.

4) Go fast! This could mean some sprinting, bike intervals, jump rope or just some super fast walking. You want to get your heart pumping. You should incorporate this into your workouts about twice per week. You can try something called "Peak 8" where you warm up for about 10 minutes, and then perform 8 rounds of 30 seconds intense exercise (run, bike, walk fast, etc.) and then slow it down for 90 seconds to recover. Do this 8 times and then cool down for 4 minutes to give you a 30 min. workout. These "bursts" help your metabolism and are very helpful to stimulate weight loss and better blood sugar handling.

Studies show that working out in the morning is the most effective time. Waiting until later in the day often leads to missed workouts as other commitments creep in. Taking care of your workout early often means increased probability of completion.

Here are a few links to some resources we have created to help you...

Mobility Routine:

Strength Circuit: Warm up first and then repeat as many times as you can in 20 minutes and follow with a stretch:

To your health!

Dr. Jeni

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