(Posted February 16th 2016 @ 10:40 AM by: Melody Reever)
“Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?” (I Corinthians 6:19, NKJV).
Have you heard of the 80/20 rule? It’s a popular weight loss slogan suggesting weight loss is 80 percent nutrition and 20 percent exercise, placing more emphasis on nutrition. I am not fond of this concept. They are both equally important on your journey to better health.
For some, weight loss is achieved just with good nutrition and for some it is achieved just with exercise; however, in order to be healthy, both are required. Being healthy isn’t just about losing weight; it is focusing on wellness of the mind, body, and attitude. For the purpose of this article, I will focus on exercise.
These are just a few of the benefits of exercise: It strengthens muscles, keeps bones strong, improves skin, increases relaxation, enhances sleep and mood, strengthens immune function, and is great for heart health.
While these benefits sound wonderful, if we all admit the truth, exercise isn’t our favorite topic.
Want to hear the good news? It can become your favorite.
Exercise doesn’t have to be a dreaded or daunting task. It can be done in strides. Every time you exercise, whether it is for ten minutes or an hour, it is beneficial. You just have to start!
Here are some steps:
- For the first two or three weeks, a light or brisk outdoors walk three to five days a week for twenty minutes is perfect. It will increase your heart rate and get your body moving.
- For the next four weeks, add in some jogging (if you are able) during each twenty minute interval of brisk walking.
- Start incorporating a few squats, lunges, and sit-ups into your twenty minute workout.
- Mix up your routine. It is great for your metabolism. If you always do the same thing, you might see your progress slow down and your results lessen. For example, walk for five minutes, run for one to two minutes, incorporate a few squats, lunges, or sit-ups for about seven minutes, and walk, jog, or do both for the rest of time.
- Slowly increase the time of your workout to thirty to forty minutes one or two days a week.
- Dedicate one day a week to a more rigorous workout.
- Add in some strength training. Purchase a couple of dumbbells to use while walking. Also use the dumbbells for a few bicep curls (front arm muscle), triceps extensions (back arm muscle), and side bends (oblique or “love handles”). If you Google these exercises, you can watch videos for explanation.
- Increase your workouts to an hour for one or two days a week.
- If you aren’t able to do your workout all at one setting, it is fine to split it up throughout the day for a couple of days.
Tips to keep a positive attitude toward exercise:
- Remember that change doesn’t happen overnight.
- Don’t worry about results. Focus on exercise itself and before you know it, you will begin to see exciting results.
- Relax and don’t rush your workout.
- Enjoy the time you are getting to better your health.
- Incorporate friends or family. Have the kids ride bikes, push the baby in a stroller, or schedule a babysitter to have a date workout night.
- When you don’t feel like exercising, always remember how good you feel after a workout.
- Set goals! Start out setting realistic goals for yourself. Reaching those goals will motivate and encourage you.
- Try not to go any longer than three days without working out.
- Working out on Mondays improves motivation for the rest of the week.
- Remember to take a couple of days off every now and then.
- Working out in the morning is best.
Shandolyn Rankin is the Nutritionist I/Site Supervisor for UTMB-WIC in Nacogdoches, Texas. She has been accepted into the 2016 Texas WIC Dietetic Internship to become a registered dietitian. She and husband, Brandon Rankin (an evangelist), enjoy working out, running trails, and spending time with their families.