Thursday, October 20, 2011

Get Healthy!

Guest Blogger Shannon Herbert - staying healthy - just in time for our 5 K run on Saturday, October 22 - still time to register! Adventures in Healthy Living: Never Stopping If you’re anything like me, you have made the commitment to get healthy at least 1,000 times, and have had enough “first days of the rest of your life” to supply every after school special ever made. Also, if you’re like me, you are completely sick of this. So, in an effort to cease the seemingly endless procrastination, I have come up with a list of five tips for staying active after the initial enthusiasm has worn off. 1. Enlist your friends or family to guilt encourage you. Let me assure you, it is a lot easier to force yourself out of bed when you have an impatient friend or relative to shame you into action. 2. Avoid boredom. It kills your drive. During several of my mini-attempts to at a healthy lifestyle, I have tried to start exercise routines that were nothing short of mind-numbingly boring. I soon learned that if you dread something, there is a slim chance that you’re going to continue to do it. So instead of forcing yourself to do something you hate, find something active you can do that actually holds your attention. This can include sports, dance fitness, playing with kids, or anything else fun that you can find. 3. Don’t overexert yourself. Aches and pains do nothing for motivation. This is more common than you might think. Often people make the commitment to get healthy and end up spending more time and energy in the gym than they need to. This leads to fatigue and muscle pains that can serve to discourage people from continuing their efforts. If you need to stop, then stop. Build up your endurance gradually rather than wearing yourself out in the first week. 4. Elevators and cars are nice (really nice), but don’t use them for everything. As someone who knows the pain of living on the third floor, I sympathize with all the elevator loyalists out there. However, avoiding cars and elevators for short trips is something that can both improve your health and the environment. Remember, every little bit helps. 5. Schedule time for exercise. Instead of merely saying, “I’m going to start going to the gym,” actually schedule a time to go. Without a schedule, it’s very easy to tell yourself that you’ll do something later. When things are planned out, however, you’re less likely to put something off. Well, these are my tips for keeping your commitment to being active. The most important thing to remember is not get discouraged. If I can run into my fitness teacher at a Taco Bell, shameless ordering a family-sized nacho platter, then you too can have your moments of excess. Don’t think that being healthy has to be an all or nothing lifestyle. You have your cake and aerobics too.* *(That was cheesy, I know. I regret nothing.)

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