Are you thinking that you don’t have time to fit exercise into your busy lifestyle? Well, think again! Here are 8 simple routines that are easy to do and – best of all – they don’t take much time. Just spend 10 minutes or less on these easy activities and a new, healthier lifestyle will be yours!
As always, be sure to check with your doctor before starting any new exercise routine.
Surely you can fit these fun, healthy activities into your busy life:
Jump rope. If you haven’t tried jumping rope lately, now is the time to give this fun and invigorating exercise a try. Purchase a jump rope or fashion your own from any sturdy piece of rope. Start slowly and gradually increase both your speed and intensity. This heart-healthy exercise can be performed a few times a day for maximum exercise benefits.
Climb stairs. Did you know that staircase in your home or workplace is actually a mini-gym in disguise? Take advantage of this exercise opportunity whenever you have a few extra minutes to spare. Climbing stairs builds strength and gets your heart pumping.
LOWERS THE ENERGY COST OF GETTING SOLAR PANELS BY 85%!!!
Listen to music or an audiobook while going up and down the stairs. Before you know it, you’ll be looking forward to your climbing sessions!
Dance to the music. Don’t be shy! Turn up your favorite music and dance with abandon! Dancing is not only fun, but it’s also a terrific form of exercise. Professional dancers are more fit than many professional athletes!
Bounce on a mini-trampoline. No doubt about it. Trampolines are just plain fun! Mini-trampolines can be purchased at many chain stores, sporting goods stores, or online. Pull out your trampoline and spend just five minutes jumping away. You may enjoy this exercise so much that you’ll increase the amount of time you have available for your exercise routine.
Many mini trampolines such as this one are available on Amazon. Always observe caution however, make sure the trampoline is secure. You don’t want to end up on the floor with a sprain or at worst, a broken bone!
Quick calisthenics. Everyone has, at one time or another, practiced calisthenics. Now is the time to remember those lunges, knee bends, and jumping jacks of days gone by! Finding just five minutes in your hectic day to practice one or more of these calisthenics exercise routines can make a big difference in your health.
Lift weights. Many exercise routines neglect that all-important need to increase upper body strength. Lifting weights solves that problem. Depending on your size and fitness level, choose the amount of weight appropriate for you. Start with lighter weights, and as you spend time on a daily routine, gradually increase the amount of weight you can handle.
Walk faster. Will you be walking the dog later today? Or perhaps walking from your car into the shopping mall? Picking up your walking speed will also increase your fitness level. Walking of any kind is always a good thing, but walking faster enhances the exercise benefits you receive from it.
Practice balance. Part of any healthy lifestyle is having a good balance. The more you practice, the easier it is to maintain balance not only in your exercise routine but also in your daily life. Practicing balance requires only a few minutes a day and best of all can be practiced anywhere with no special equipment.
Stand a few feet from a wall, kitchen counter, or other supporting structure and raise one foot off the ground. Hold this for 5 – 10 seconds. Maintain balance as long as you can. Repeat with the other foot.
As seen in this picture, place one foot forward, the other foot in the back. Raise your arms as seen here and hold the pose for 5 seconds or more, maintaining your balance. Alternate with the left and right foot to strengthen both legs.
There are many more exercises you can do to improve balance. for the purpose of this short article, let’s keep it simple. But you get the idea. Tai Chi is a great exercise to improve balance. I have always recommended this exercise that is great for wellness. Yoga is an excellent exercise for promoting balance as well.
With daily practice, you’ll notice a gradual increase in the amount of time you can keep your balance.
By following just a few of these simple and quick exercise routines, you’ll be on your way to a healthier and happy lifestyle. Don’t wait for tomorrow. Start now!
Overuse injuries from exercise, running or intense physical activity can cause overuse injuries.
Exercise is one of the best things you can do for your body and mind, but it can cause two kinds of injuries. You’ll notice major trauma like a sprained ankle or dislocated shoulder immediately, but other damage builds up over time.
Try these tips that will help you stay active and speed up your recovery when you do suffer an injury.
Preventing Overuse Injuries:
Schedule rest time. Your body grows stronger when you give it adequate time to heal in between workouts. Overuse injuries are a strong message that you need to take a break.
Vary your workouts. Repetitive movements put more stress on your body because you keep using the same parts in the same ways. Try alternating exercises. If you’re a parent, keep in mind that children can be especially high risk if they over-specialize in one sport while their bodies are still developing.
Change your equipment. Do your running shoes fit? Properly sized gear appropriate for your sport can help keep you safe.
Consult a trainer. Precise alignment is another consideration. Study videos or work with a specialist who can teach you how to squat or pitch a softball correctly.
Build up gradually. Avoid trying to do too much too soon. Adding 10% a week to your strength exercises, distance, or speed works for most adults.
Warm up. Gentle movements prepare your body and mind for what’s ahead. Roll your shoulders and walk around for a few minutes before doing more challenging activities.
Stretch your muscles. Complete your workouts by training for flexibility. Target your stiff spots and hold each stretch for a few minutes.
Listen to your body. Structural issues or medical conditions can make overuse injuries more likely. Take extra care if you have flat feet or you tore your rotator cuff last winter when you were shoveling snow. Stop doing any activity that causes pain.
Treating Overuse Injuries:
Take a break. Proper rest is essential for both prevention and treatment of injuries. It’s the first step in the standard RICE formula that you may have heard of. RICE stands for rest, ice, compression, and elevation.
Apply ice. Ice packs are most helpful when used early and often. During the first couple of days after an injury, they can dramatically reduce swelling and discomfort. To protect your skin, use a covered ice pack or wrap a bag of frozen peas in a towel.
Wrap it up. Elastic bandages also cut down on swelling. Limit their use to no more than 2 days in order to restore the normal blood flow necessary for healing.
Elevate the area. Try to keep your hurt arm or leg at or above the level of your heart. Prop them up on a pillow while you’re watching TV or working.
Relieve pain. Anti-inflammatory medications like aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen may help. They’re available over-the-counter or in stronger prescription form. Follow the directions on the label and talk with your doctor if your symptoms last for more than 10 days.
See your physician. Your doctor can recommend prevention and treatment strategies appropriate for your individual body. Talk with your health care professionals if home remedies aren’t working or you have any concerns.
Most overuse injuries can be prevented if you know the signs and take action promptly. Stay fit and active by giving your body the rest it needs and using proper form when you work out.
I felt compelled to share a simple guide about this affliction that plagues many individuals: most of whom, are still in their productive years.
My most recent patient 57-year-old Kathryn (not her real name), was diagnosed with chronic fibromyalgia since she was 25 years old. She is deaf. She lip reads however and is also obese. She lives alone and has a baby dog weighing over a hundred pounds that she had to walk daily.
She complains she aches all over after walking her dog, but she still does it daily. When I first saw her for an evaluation, I just really thought she hated me on sight.
She complained about everything: how she had physical therapy before many times and it never helped. She added that she had been reading on the internet about fibromyalgia and that she knows that there is no cure for it. She saw pain management doctors and the shots she received did not help her either, as she stated. “Nothing worked, NOTHING will work, and you can’t help me either!”
There was only one question I asked her: “Have you ever tried letting KATHRYN, help …. KATHRYN?
This lady did a turnaround and took charge. First, we corrected her posture. I gave her exercises and instructions on how to correct her posture. We made it fun. She completed her physical therapy program just a few weeks ago. She made me so proud. What a difference she made in her life by working on changes herself.
Kathryn is not the only fibromyalgia patient that I had the privilege of working with. The ones who made a decision to make a change and stick with it were winners in my eyes.
The smallest of victories as being able to drive again,being able to carry a grandchild, or attend a son’s wedding? It meant the world to them.
Most of all, it means a lot to me.
Fibromyalgia is the 2nd major “rheumatic” disorder. Its prevalence is about 2 to 8% of the population. It has a woman and man ratio of 2:1. It resembles some chronic pain diseases. Fibromyalgia may affect individuals of any age, including children. Its prevalence is the same in different regions, cultures, and ethnic groups.
Fibromyalgia patients complain about chronic pain in their entire body. Fibromyalgia patients have a history of irritable bowel syndrome, dysmenorrhea,headaches,fatigue, and some gastrointestinal disorders including interstitial cystitis, endometriosis, etc.
It is a lifelong disorder that begins in adult age or young age manifested by pain. It is observed in different areas of the body.
Studies have found that there is about 50 percent of the risk of developing fibromyalgia due to genetic reasons and the remaining 50% risks are due to environmental causes. Environmental factors may initiate fibromyalgia.
Fibromyalgia or similar disorders, like chronic fatigue, can be initiated by different kinds of infections (e.g., Lyme disease, EB virus, viral hepatitis, Q fever) and trauma. Psychological stress can initiate fibromyalgia too.
***The most efficient way to approach fibromyalgia is to integrate pharmacological and nonpharmacological treatments to engage the affected person to participate actively in this procedure. ***
There are various methods are developed to manage symptoms of fibromyalgia.
In chronic conditions, non-pharmacologic methods are used to reduce symptoms.
These methods enhance control over the condition. Studies have found that by regular exercise/yoga and following nutritional, behavioral, and physiological interventions, we can reduce the symptoms such as fatigue.
Some pharmacological therapies that address pain, depression, and sleep can manage the symptoms significantly. However, fibromyalgia patients are also advised to avoid short-acting drugs because it may lead to drug dependency.
5 STRATEGIES THAT CAN BE USED TO MANAGE FIBROMYALGIA SYMPTOMS
Self-initiated activities: It includes management strategies. i.e distraction, prayer, planning, and exercising.
Professional treatments: It includes acupuncture, physiotherapy, group or psychotherapy, and ultrasound therapy.
Escape behaviors: Avoiding pain medication and alcohol.
Resignation: Reflecting hopelessness and lack of control.
Passivity: It includes ignoring pain, self-care methods and comparing current circumstances to others.
NATURAL REMEDIES FOR FIBROMYALGIA
The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) reported that fibromyalgia affects approximately 2 percent of the adult population in the USA.
There is no complete cure for fibromyalgia: but we can reduce and manage the symptoms by natural remedies, lifestyle changes, and medication.
For patients with fibromyalgia, it is difficult to exercise regularly. But such a condition can be managed by gradual and persistent exercise.
By building strong muscles, pain and discomfort can be reduced. Before starting any type of exercise, the patient should consult the doctor or physical therapist.
Aerobic exercises such as walking, swimming, and cycling are very beneficial for patients with fibromyalgia. These help improve the health and the overall well-being of the body. It may also result in reduced pain, stiffness, and fatigue.
Neurological studies have found that a program of a 15-week exercise can lead to better brain functioning in people that are affected by fibromyalgia.
PHYSIOBALL EXERCISES FOR PAIN RELIEF THROUGH SELF STRETCHING
Although there are many exercises one can search for online, I will share a simplified routine that has worked great with my fibromyalgia patients. Why do I like to use a physioball? I want to keep it simple and easy to get started with. Especially so with fibromyalgia patients.
The ball provides good support to the heavy lower extremities and supports the back when laying down on the back (supine position).
A SIMPLE TIP: When lying down flat on the back, always keep knees bent, or place pillows for support under the knees. This takes the stress of the lower back. It is important to maintain the natural curve of the low back (lumbar lordosis).
More of this type of exercise is discussed in the book. With the chronic muscle pains from Fibromyalgia, it is important to maintain flexibility, decrease muscle tone for better tolerance to functional activities.
Scoliosis can develop from the degeneration of the lumbar spine caused by normal wear and tear. Osteoarthritis is also a common cause. It is also common in the elderly as the spine deteriorates from degenerative disc disease. This will also have developed since adolescence but was undetected. furthermore, most cases of scoliosis have no known cause,
A common problem due to degenerative changes in the spine and common in the adult population, I see this a lot in the clinical setting. Complaints from individuals including back pain, sciatica, and functional decline due to anxiety with functional activities from anticipating pain.
Here, I want to share Ms. Carol’s story about her personal journey with this condition. I admire her tenacity as she continues to take charge of her own wellness despite her physical problems. Carol L., has been a patient of mine for over a decade. She is very active in life. She volunteers at a local zoo engage in social and community service activities, joins exercise classes and continues to live her life to its fullest. As told to me, this is her story, verbatim. This is exactly how she wrote it.
“I am 74 years old, and I have been living with scoliosis for the last twenty years or so. A recent x-ray described my spine as follows; “Marked thoracolumbar scoliosis convexity to the left, some 74 degrees.” I’ve been told that I could have been in a wheelchair with this kind of curvature. Instead, I am active, healthy, and flexible.
But, I’ve had to work – consistently – over the last 20 years to maintain my strength and flexibility.
Scoliosis is degenerative, so things change. Scoliosis itself doesn’t hurt – it’s the way it pulls the rest of the body (spine, pelvis, hips, shoulders) out of alignment, causing sore everything and often pinched nerves. It hurts to move, so you don’t! That’s the problem.
My first major episode was a pinched sciatic nerve in about 1995, and I thought I would never walk again. Doctors wanted to prescribe drugs and bed rest. I chose to see a chiropractor. The adjustments would not hold, and I was referred to a physical therapist. After about three physical therapists, I finally found someone who understood my problem and said – Ha! Your pelvis is out of alignment! Let’s work on core strength and stabilize the pelvis.
It’s essential to work on physical therapy, understand the problem, and continue to do the exercises. But, life happens, so you slack off your workouts, you get older, and your curve gets worse. So on and off, I’ve been back in real therapy-each time focusing a little differently on scoliosis, and of course, arthritis!
I have been fortunate to see the same physical therapist – someone who understands the problem and is not afraid to make me work! Staying active – moving – is critical. I’ve tried almost every medication in the market without much success – so I’ve not taken any medication for a long time.
The last episode had been complicated by moderately severe stenosis (according to my MRI), causing nerve pain, and I finally got a steroid injection. With that relief, and some new strengthening and stretching exercises from my physical therapist, I’ve been able to manage the pain reasonably well and achieve much better posture! Now, my focus is on maintaining strength AND flexibility, AND posture! I do a little routine in the morning to get ready for the day. You know when you are out of alignment – you hurt!
The June 2017 issue of Consumer reports says that growing research shows that a combination of ‘hands-on therapy’ (Yoga, Tai Chi, massage, physical therapy, acupuncture, chiropractic) is more effective than drugs or surgery. I do them all (well, almost all), and it works!
Am I pain-free?? No. Have I been pain-free for the last 20 years? No. But it’s manageable with the exercises, I can do pretty much anything I want to do – walk, climb stairs, stand for hours, volunteer, travel, etc. My therapist warns me I’m getting old and have to be more careful about breaking bones and causing serious injury – so I’m trying to take it a little easier – but not too much!”
– By Carol L. (written 5/31/2018)
It is always possible to make adjustments to inabilities, and one can still live a productive life despite physical challenges. I have so much admiration for this hardworking lady who grabs the bull by its horn and just so inspiring to know!
She was back again for PT this year, for back pain; not a lot of complaints this time, mostly concerned with her R hip and leg. As always, she always gets better and returns to usual activities. She still actively goes to the gym and does her usual volunteer work at the Brevard Zoo 2 days a week.
It was a great pleasure to see her again overcome her difficulties..