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!
Do You Recognize the 3 Main Trouble Spots for Osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis can affect any bone in your body. It is a condition where bone becomes less dense and porous, making it brittle. This is why fractures can happen even with the slightest pressure or load. I have patients who broke a hip just by standing up from a seated position.
The most common trouble is the wrist, spine, and hips. As the population grows older, the condition is becoming more widespread. According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, about 10 million Americans have osteoporosis and another 44 million have low bone density.
Osteoporosis is the thins the bone as we age. This is because there is not much impact and loading on bones as people become more sedentary. The bones become thinner and more brittle. It develops over time. The symptoms may be unnoticed until a bone fracture happens.
Use this quick guide to strengthen your bones and lower your risks for osteoporosis.
Caring for Your Wrists
A broken wrist is often an early sign of osteoporosis.That is especially true if the injury was caused by only minor force. For women, a Colle’s fracture is very common.
Be mindful of your wrist position.Practice holding your wrists flat rather than letting them bend backward while typing or lifting objects. This will guard against carpal tunnel syndrome and related injuries.
Towel wringing. There are many exercises that can strengthen your wrist. In addition to dumbbell exercises, there are some moves you can do anywhere to condition your wrists. Grab a towel by each end and twist it tightly. Hold for 5 seconds. Do this in both directions.
Squeeze a ball. Another option is holding a ball in your palm and squeezing it with your fingers. Point your middle finger towards the center of your wrist to minimize joint stress.
(Hold and squeeze the ball, hold for 5 – 10 seconds each time, then relax. Repeat for as many as you are able to tolerate. While watching TV, waiting in line, etc.
Caring for Your Spine
***Almost 700,000 people a year experience vertebral compression fractures, and there may be no noticeable discomfort. These injuries are almost twice as common as broken hips or wrists.***
Warning signs. You can spot compression fractures if you know what to look for. Symptoms include sudden loss of height, difficulty breathing, a protruding stomach, and soreness in your lower back.
Strengthen your core. Strengthening and firming up your abdominal muscles can take a load off your back. Engage your abs during workouts and daily tasks like carrying groceries.
Be careful when bending forward. If you already have osteoporosis, bending forward can contribute to spine and hip fractures. Your doctor may recommend you use a pick-up cane so you can clean the house and pick up your keys while standing up.
Caring for Your Hips
Broken hips can trigger long-term health issues and interfere with independent living. More than 95% of hip fractures are caused by falling, according to the CDC.
Work on improving your balance.There are many ways to increase your balance and coordination. Sign up for Tai Chi or yoga classes. Take turns standing on one leg at a time. Keep your eyeglass prescription updated and play it safe with medications that make you drowsy.
Strengthen your legs.Powerful legs can help you stay on your feet. Train them with squats, lunges, and calf raises.
Make home adaptations. Modify your home with safety in mind. Install grab bars in the bathroom and extra lights in the backyard. Ensure that each stairway has secure rails on both sides.
⇒ MORE IMPORTANT TIPS:
Prompt medical treatment and lifestyle changes can make a big difference in keeping your bones healthy. Genetics alone is not enough to rely on to determine your risk factors for osteoporosis.
Consult with your doctor. Your doctor can prescribe bone and health screenings & diagnostics to evaluate your individual situation. Your health team then will be able to help you manage your risk factors and design a safe exercise program.
Eat calcium-rich foods.Calcium and Vitamin D are two important nutrients for your bones. Consider including dairy products and fortified breakfast cereal in your diet.
Add intensity to your workouts. Make sure it is the right type of exercise for your fitness level, however. Walking is good for your posture and your heart. More challenging activities are required to make an impact on your bone mass. Bone responds accordingly to the loads placed on it. Do strength training gradually and safely, increasing the amount of weight you use. Consult with a physical therapist. Physical Therapists are skilled at evaluating your fitness level and the type of therapeutic exercises appropriate for you. It is necessary to take any comorbidities into consideration.
Get on the ball with osteoporosis prevention. Fighting osteoporosis can help you to live longer and more independently in your golden years. Work with your doctor to take care of your bones by building up their strength and density with targeted exercises and healthy lifestyle choices.
1. Maximize your range of motion. People with arthritis often try to cope with the pain by holding their joints in bent positions that feel more comfortable. Unfortunately, this causes further loss of mobility Exercise helps to keep your joints as flexible as possible and prevent further damage.
Discover how you can boost brainpower, enhance your mood, restore energy levels, and nourish and protect your brain.
There are many gadgets you can use for strengthening your hands: Stress balls, hand gripper exercises, finger bands, etc. Ask a therapist about exercise programs for painful arthritic hands.
2. Strengthen your muscles and bones. Strong muscles and bones provide more support and protection for fragile joints. Weight-bearing exercises build up muscle and thicken your bones.
3. Lose excess weight. You burn a lot more calories when you’re moving around, which of course helps with weight loss. A more active lifestyle will help you reach and maintain your ideal weight without resorting to dangerously low-calorie diets.
4. Improve cardiovascular fitness. Endurance exercises that are gentle on your joints will make your heart work more efficiently without aggravating your arthritis. You’ll feel more energetic and reduce your risk for many health conditions including heart disease and obesity.
5. Make daily activities easier. Stiff joints interfere with daily pleasures and tasks, from playing with your grandchildren to just buttoning a shirt. Exercise improves your ability to function and live independently.
6. Boost your mood. Living with chronic pain may cause depression. Physical activity elevates your mood and helps you sleep better. You can even make new friends by enrolling in group classes like Tai chi or water aerobics.
Top Exercises for Arthritis:
1. Design a balanced program. A well-designed fitness program includes exercises for flexibility, strength, and endurance. Stop what you’re doing if you feel any sharp pain. This conventional wisdom for exercisers is even more important when dealing with arthritis.
2. Stretch. Daily flexibility moves will help restore your range of motion. Warm-up with a little walking in place and do these exercises in a controlled manner. One simple stretch for fingers is to massage your hands. Then, alternate extending and closing your fingers into a loose fist.
3. Train for strength. Strengthen your muscles with resistance exercises using weights, elastic bands, or your own body weight. For example, target your knees by sitting in a chair and slowly straightening and bending each leg.
4. Perform low-impact aerobics. Walking, aqua aerobics and stationary bicycles are just a few examples of endurance activities that are easy on your body. Exercising in warm water is especially good because the temperature and buoyancy protect damaged joints.
Additional Safety Tips:
1. Talk with your doctor. Be sure to talk with your doctor before beginning an exercise program to find the best approach for your type of arthritis. Your physician can recommend safe activities and help you avoid injury.
2. Build up gradually. Start conservatively and progress gradually. When you’re comfortable with walking in water, you may want to add more intense movements like leg lifts.
3. Modify your workouts during flare-ups. Your doctor can advise you about exercising during flare-ups. You may need to rest or modify your program to alleviate pressure on the affected joints.
4. Find the best time of day for you. Many people experience morning stiffness, so experiment to find the best time of day for you. Taking a warm shower first or using a heat pack may also make exercising more comfortable.
5. Work with physical or occupational therapists. Therapists with experience working with arthritis can provide more guidance. They can help you learn to move safely during your workouts and all your daily activities.
Exercise makes it easier to live with arthritis. Manage your pain and stay healthy with safe and regular workouts using activities that you enjoy.
Patrick Diver, Owner of Strength Clinic at www.mystrengthclinic.com .(I requested this friend to share his take on stress.)
For over 15 years, Patrick has led the way to exceptional fitness results for a diverse range of Orlando men and women and has supervised over 25,000 injury-free workouts.
A graduate of Missouri State University with a B.S. in Sports Medicine and Athletic Training, Patrick’s first certification came from the National Athletic Trainers Association and was followed by certifications from Superslow innovator Ken Hutchins (Superslow Exercise Guild) and YMCA research director Wayne Wescott (Nautilus).
Patrick also speaks regularly and has been featured on Fox-35, News Channel 13, and had given over 150 fitness talks to many of Central Florida’s most successful companies including Darden Restaurants, Lowndes, Drosdick, Doster, Kantor & Reed, Universal Creative, and the Orlando Economic Development Commission.
Besides a passion for helping men and women realize their best physical potential, Patrick competes regularly in cycling with multiple states, regional, and national championship medals to his credit, and enjoys playing guitar and taking care of his dog, named Dog.
I believe most things in life necessitate a balanced approach: The Yin and Yang if you will. I think stress falls in this umbrella as well. We need a certain amount of stress in life. Without it, it is easy to become stagnant and cease growing.
In my field, muscle tissue is a good example. You’ve probably heard that when you add and develop muscle tissue, your metabolism gets a boost. What does this mean exactly, “get a boost?”
This means that the body burns extra calories. That’s one of the good side effects of strength training – and one you have probably heard of. That is the reason for the current craze in fitness, body-building, and the obsession for the perfect body.
Your body, however, wants to be efficient. It doesn’t really want to burn extra calories because, in the days gone by, it might have been difficult to find those “extra” calories.
So, if it’s not using muscle to full effect – in other words, if they are not being utilized or stressed on a regular basis to maintain function, then the body will get rid of what it views as metabolically “expensive” tissue.
So in this case, stress is not only desired but absolutely crucial to continue living a high quality of life.
Of course, the application of stress has to be measured.
Where people get into trouble, whether it is pursuing fitness goals, managing work/life balance, or even dealing with emotions, is when they take on too much stress, without having a means for downtime, rest, and recovery. We become engrossed with stress.
I account for this in my Ironclad Rules. Rule #7 is to: Keep a Relaxed-Focus. This is another way of saying the same thing.
The continued pursuit of success in life will be difficult to achieve in a negative or overly stressful environment.
A certain amount of calm and objectivity is needed.
However, you can’t allow yourself to be so calm that you blow things off or shirk responsibilities – hence, Keeping a relaxed focus.
So, while too much stress will ultimately shut down any system, too little stress will yield undesirable results as well.
Like most things in life, it is really about balance.
Stress is unavoidable. It is a significant part of our daily responsibilities and existence. Although there may be a few lucky individuals who claim they have a stress-free life, it may be because they have learned to navigate its complexities and have adapted effectively. A few have found the equilibrium in the midst of the chaos of daily existence.
We, as mammals of the highest cognitive faculties, possess that capacity to adapt. Though we deal with stress in many different ways based on our psyche and predilections for survival, there is hope. We are ultimately responsible for actions that will allow us to prevail. Just take that step.
As the song goes, “learning to love yourself, is the greatest gift of all,” carries a profound meaning that we ourselves often forget. Many among us tend to get inundated with the need to take care of others and take on responsibilities because we feel we have to. This often becomes a burden that sooner or later snowballs into something that is overwhelming. These stressors soon take away the joy out of life.
Find that balance. Take care of yourself. Find what works for you.
This simple book just provides an overview of the options. There are more out there by individuals who found that key to a productive life and an efficient way of navigating life’s complexities. Study and learn. Adapt.
Yes, stress can be perceived as unpleasant. Yet, most people find and discover their own strengths in times of adversity.
As Kelly Clarkson’s song goes, “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”. Cliche, but its truth rings true. ~~~***~~~
Falls result in more than 2.8 million injuries treated in emergency departments annually, including over 800,000 hospitalizations and more than 27,000 deaths.
The enormity of the problem has prompted diverse programs involving over 70 national organizations involved in Fall prevention, The Falls Free National Action Plan by the NCOA.
The plan includes action steps of reducing the impact of medications as a risk factor, promoting physical mobility, and improving home safety. Fall risk assessment and screenings, promoting evidence-based programs also is a major component of this national initiative.
More Fall Prevention Programs have surfaced and a majority of these promote exercise programs designed to reduce falls in the elderly. Tai Chi has been widely recognized as an effective exercise program for fall prevention.
Key elements to incorporate into a Tai Chi program:
> relaxes muscles > lowers the center of gravity Lowered center of gravity > increases load on lower limbs > over time increases sensation and awareness of lower limb movement.
• Transfer of Weight:
Shifting body weight from leg to leg through incremental movements. Start with a small range of movement and gradually build up to a wide, square base stance.
• Muscle strength
Muscle bulk and therefore strength decrease with age. A bent-knee stance and movement work to strengthen lower limb muscle (particularly the quadriceps muscles) (however, always work to an individual’s limitations. If a bent knee stance is too difficult, then do the movement without bent knees).
This involves issues such as increased body sway, low mobility, and postural instability. Increasing age is also associated with reduced sensation in lower limbs and is consequently associated with a loss of righting reflexes and an increase in body sway, which can lead to falls.
Decreased stepping height and decreased stride length. Women tend to have a narrow walking and standing base, closer foot placement, erect posture > difficulty to step down from stools/benches. Men tend to have a small-stepped gait, wider walking and standing base and stooped posture.
Tai Chi addresses gait problems by teaching the “correct” movement of lower limbs. This is done by lifting lower limbs from the knee rather than the foot; lifting lower limbs without misaligning the pelvis, and teaching to place heel down first when moving forward (toes first when moving back). Also, teaching movement with appropriate weight transfer, posture, and slightly bent knees improves stride length
Tai Chi also teaches participants to maintain a relaxed posture with an elongated spine.