It is the 21st century and there is no debate to be had. Exercise reduces risk of disease which, in turn, reduces risk of mortality. Most importantly, however, it improves quality of life. “Quality of life” is a relative phrase and can mean different things to different people. When it comes to exercise, an improved quality of life comes in the form of simply feeling good.
“Wait until you hit 40…” is commonly heard in discussions about weight management. Yes, the traditional thought is that our metabolisms are burning hotter as we grow, level off, and then decrease when hitting ‘middle-age.' This is when the weight becomes more difficult to control. A new study, Daily energy expenditure through the human life course, says not so fast. News outlets are all over this. Some have attention-grabbing headlines and other science-based outlets have interviewed the authors to get more insight. Here is a link to the actual study abstract, but if you want to read the whole paper, there is a fee. A ScienceDaily article includes excerpts from author interviews.
This month’s title implies a discussion on an exciting new exercise routine, or the latest research resulting in something called the fitness matrix. That would be great, but let’s go a different direction and discuss science fiction. The 1999 film, The Matrix, can be used as a metaphor for exercise. Some would call it a cult classic. For those that have never seen the film, you may not appreciate all the analogies, but the message is clear… exercise is your choice and you have the ability to do it.
It is easy to continue declaring the importance of physical activity. Anyone can holler from the fitness soapbox to hammer home the message. For some, however, the idea of exercise is intimidating. Maybe your perception of exercise is skewed. It is also possible that it’s not about understanding, but you simply downplay the importance of exercise in your life. In both scenarios, it can be difficult to be convinced of just how important it is. Whether you are having this debate internally or with others, understanding your own perception of and perspective on exercise may help.
May’s Pointe Fitness Newsletter discussed body weight and its level of importance in predicting health. The conclusion was that body weight is not necessarily a measure of health, but we shouldn’t allow that to excuse us from healthy behavior. The correlation between overweightness/obesity and quality of health in our population is undeniable. This brings us to the great carbohydrate debate and the macronutrient’s importance in weight gain/loss.
Body weight and health is a relationship that will forever be discussed. Overweight/obesity = unhealthy, right? Hopping on the scale and seeing a specific number, whether ‘good’ or ‘bad’, is a quick and easy way many of us define our level of health. We have been conditioned to obsess over the number on the scale. Does that number really matter when it comes to how healthy we are? Yours truly believes the answer is no... and... yes.
Spring is all about new beginnings. The past year has been nothing short of frustrating when it comes to your desire to go out and do… well… almost anything. This spring has the promise of truly being a new beginning as conditions improve and restrictions potentially loosen. The link between our health, and actively doing versus not doing, is undeniable. The importance of disease prevention through doing physical activity, needs to be highlighted. It is time to spring into action and promote exercise science.
March weather has been known to come in like a lion and go out like a lamb. There are plenty of us that have experienced this with our health and wellness behavior. At first, intentions are so strong that regular workouts and being extremely conscientious of meals is the approach. This puts you first and in control (in charge). As time goes by, this approach may lessen to the point of failing to reach and maintain goals. Lion personalities are associated with courage, strength, bravery, and leadership. Lamb personalities are associated with loyalty, empathy, and indecisiveness. A negative connotation even describes lambs as weak. This goes a bit far as all personalities can adapt their strengths to succeed in health and wellness goals. There are five primary personality traits known as the “Big 5.” As we review these traits, and how to take advantage of them in achieving improved health and wellness, you may notice them in yourself and you are likely a mix of more than one.
Matters of the heart is a popular phrase used for movie titles, song titles, and generally anything involving love and romance. February is American Heart Month, so let’s focus on love, but not traditional romantic relationships. Love you have for yourself and how it can influence your own life and others’ lives is an important part of health and wellness.
The World Health Organization (WHO) just released new guidelines on physical activity and sedentary behavior. The WHO has been quite popular this past year with mixed public reactions on its various guidelines. I’m here to tell you that no matter your current opinion or feelings about the WHO, the organization got it right on these new exercise guidelines.
Fitness enthusiasts are always looking for new ways to challenge themselves. Tier System Strength Training is yet another way to do so. The great thing about this method is that it can be adapted to a variety of ability levels. Tier training isn’t just for the experienced enthusiast or athlete, but its origins are in elite athlete training.
Common courtesy is something that should be learned from an early age and continually practiced. One aspect of common courtesy is being thankful. More than making one a better, more personable human, being thankful can enhance health. As you might assume, the health benefits from gratitude are rooted in psychological health. An improved mental state, however, does spill over into physical health.