Finding time to work-out and having the motivation to work-out are two of the biggest obstacles that prevent regular working guys and girls, like me and you, from getting to the physical fitness level they desire. The job usually gobbles up most of the hours of the day and most of the energy too. Once the energy is sapped out, it usually takes the motivation and the excitement to exercise along with it. This leads to the work-out getting postponed for tomorrow, and then the day after, then the day after that, until the workout pretty much never gets done. A few months later, you realize you’re already way too out of shape and you try to get on a crash diet or work-out program of some sort to get back what you lost all these months.
This is usually the cycle that happens. But it is by no means the norm that should be followed. Going on crash work-outs are almost never good for your body. It puts too much strain on your muscles and on your cardio vascular system too. The better way to overcome the obstacles regarding time and motivation is to integrate your workout into your everyday routine. This would ensure that you would have enough energy for the work-out because you haven’t spent it all at your job yet. At the same time, you would not need to really motivate yourself to do the work-out because you’re not doing it just to work-out; you are doing it as part of doing your daily routine.
The easiest exercise that you can integrate into your routine is walking. If you commute to and from your job, all you have to do is get off the jeep several hundred meters (a kilometer would be even better) from where you used to get off. This would allow you to get some much needed exercise while you walk and it would also help you save a peso or two on your fare (is that great or what?). An alternative to this is to get yourself a bike and to forego riding the jeep altogether. Biking, just like walking, is a great everyday work-out.
If you have a car and drive to work, you can get some walking exercise in by parking farther away than you used to. If you can’t, you can always take the stairs instead of the elevator. Walking up the stairs is much better than walking on a straight path. It provides much more resistance, thus it forces you to use more effort.
Another exercise you can do without having to allot a specific portion of your day to it is stretching. Yes, stretching IS an exercise! It is not just a warm up thing. Stretching gives your body a lot of benefits: it “wakes” your muscles without having to put them through a lot of stress, it helps your muscles grow and lengthen, and it helps you become more limber and agile too. Best of all, you can do some stretching wherever you are and whatever time you feel like it. You probably stretch in the morning when you wake up without even knowing it. You can stretch at work by simply standing up from your chair and reaching for your toes. This is great exercise for your legs and for your back as well.
Actually, just standing up from your chair is already a great exercise. Standing up and sitting down in succession for several repetitions is practically doing squats. To get in some work-out for your arms, try raising them in front of you or to your sides as you get up from your chair.
Whatever you choose to do, the important thing for you to remember is that you have to keep yourself active everyday. You will benefit a lot more from a little exercise everyday than from a lot of exercise done altogether just once a week.
Whenever I hear the word cancer oftentimes I feel some chills. Though I hear it and read about it many times it still sounds alien for some reasons. I know of some people who have died because of it. My former accountant and a very good friend of my sibling had a couple of chemo sessions but unfortunately was not able to survive.
I know of lung cancer, breast cancer, and then prostate, then that is it. I suppose I am also not that well-informed about cancer like most Filipinos. So I Google “cancer” and Wikipedia gave lots of basic and important information.
Cancer is 90-95% caused by environmental factors and 5-10% due to hereditary genetics. The first one has a staggering percentage so I decided to read further about it; and the second sounds too complicated. =)
These environmental factors include tobacco smoking (25-30%), poor diet that leads to obesity and other diseases (30-35%), infections (15-20%), radiation (10%), lack of regular exercise, pollution, and even stress.
Tobacco is one of the components of most manufactured cigarettes. So if you are smoking cigarettes you are smoking tobacco. We Filipinos love to eat. But I don’t know exactly which foods may cause cancer. I remember a tomato sauce brand claiming prevention of cancer if consumed regularly. Infections are due to bacteria, viruses, and other microscopic organisms. Radiation is another complex topic. I need to make more research on these causes.
So if I don’t smoke, if I eat nutritious foods, and do regular physical activities then there should be less chance for me to get cancer? It should. But of course this is easier said than done especially the eating part. Because of the numerous gatherings and events Filipinos love to celebrate we become careless. But most importantly, it’s what we do every day. It is what we consume every day. So the best time to start preventing cancer is now. And the best way is to always educate yourself and your loved ones.
I shall write more about cancer on the next coming posts. Please feel free to share your thoughts.