Health & Fitness

It is funny that I would write something on health and fitness. I hate the ‘e’ word (exercise).

I do like the thought of exercise. I like to watch the work out videos, while eating a package of Oreos, and then wish I looked that gal in the video.

I think about working out, and then the thought of getting all sweaty and exhausted just doesn’t sound fun.  So I take a shower, get ready for the day and think about it the next day.

Eating healthy isn’t one of my things either – I’m pretty sure chocolate is one of the main food groups. It’d be a lot easier if I had a chef who cooked healthy meals every day for me. My dream kind of came true – my husband cooked and prepared all our meals for a few weeks while on a Keto diet. I got so used to that, and then one evening he didn’t make dinner and I got a little bit upset. I said, “Aren’t you going to make dinner?” We laugh about it now! I sounded so ridiculous. I could have made myself something to eat, I didn’t have a broken arm.

One thing I did learn within the first year of moving out of my parents’ house, was not to go to the grocery store hungry.  I lived with my sister, and we came home with nothing but a bunch of junk…potato chips, cookies, snacks…nothing to cook for dinner over the next week. After that trip, we decided to go to lunch first and then hit the grocery store. It was much more productive.

As I’ve gotten older, I do try to eat healthier and get some form of activity. I notice when I do eat better, I feel better. Don’t get me wrong, I still eat chocolate. I just try not to wipe out a whole package of cookies, or a whole chocolate cake at one sitting.

I have more energy when I make better food choices. It helps if I plan out each meal or prepack the next day’s lunch or snacks.  I also try to get more activity into my life. Just even going for a walk or a leisurely bike ride.

There are areas in our lives that always need improving. This is one of mine. I am not consistent, but I am aware of it and try to work at it.

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It doesn’t have to be rigorous or for an hour long. Start out with just 10 minutes and work your way to 30 minutes. It is also easier the younger you start incorporating some form of exercise and healthy eating into your life. Old habits are harder to break.

There are all kinds of ways to stay active and fit these days. You don’t need a gym membership. You can work out from the comfort and convenience of your home, and you have a lot of options besides hopping on a stationary bike or treadmill. I like the Simply-Fit board – it fits easily into my schedule. I even started ice skating twice a week – it felt great to learn something new. An added benefit was making several new friends!

Here are some tips to help set up an exercise routine by WebMD:

Choose a location. Designate and declutter a spot in your home for your workouts. Don’t automatically pick your basement or garage. If it’s not an appealing space, you won’t want to spend a lot of time there.

Look for an area near where you often sit. An empty corner or a spot near your TV, for instance, could be perfect. You don’t want it to be out of sight, out of mind.

Buy the necessities. You don’t need a lot of fancy gear. For under $100, you can buy some basics, such as an exercise mat, stability ball, resistance bands, and a few dumbbells. Or make your own list, based on what you want to do. What equipment do you need to support your goals?

Add some comforts. Whatever your favorite way to entertain yourself may be, get it ready to go, and then save it to enjoy during your workout.

Make a playlist with songs you love. Download an audiobook you’re excited about. Record a whole season of a great show on your DVR, or add it to your streaming queue.

Use the web. Need an instructor? Check the web for online fitness classes. You can find yoga, dance, strength training and others that you watch from your iPad or computer.

Some are free. Some are pay-as-you-go. Others require memberships and a monthly fee. Some ideas:

  • Curvy Yoga: Online classes or videos of yoga taught by, well, a curvy woman

  • DailyBurn: Various types of exercise at different challenge levels

  • Physique 57: Videos of a boutique fitness class that combines ballet, Pilates and isometrics

  • Pound Rockout Workout: Online version of a popular fitness class at Crunch gyms — simulated drumming with lightly weighted drumsticks for cardio, Pilates, isometric movements, and plyometrics

  • YogaGlo: Videos to download

Play around. If you’re willing to invest a little cash, all the major game systems — like the Microsoft Xbox One, the Nintendo Wii U, and the Sony PlayStation 4 — make exercise fun with motion sensors that track your movement.

Get fit as you dance, do yoga or tai chi, go white-water rafting, or fight zombies. Some fitness games estimate the calories you burned afterward.

Make a reservation. When you exercise at home, it’s easy to let life interfere. That’s why it’s especially important to have a set time to work out.

Find a time that feels best for you (in the morning, before dinner, in the evening) to ensure your success. At the start of every week, look at your calendar and slot in your workouts. If your preferred time slot won’t work one day, find another time that will.