|It's a simple fact of nature: People
are all about excuses! Even me. That was until a few years back when I simply
decided to change the way I looked...AGAIN! That's right. Again. You see, I'd
tried and failed so many times to Get Fit! that my head was spinning. I knew
what I wanted but I couldn't commit. That was until I discovered that it was
simply a matter of the fact that I couldn't commit to "Their" way
of doing things.
Today, I'm a product of commitment but I'm a product of committing to my way of doing things combined with someone else's sensible program that didn't push me over the edge. And there's the important point of distinction. A sensible program will push you, I mean we all need that, but it won't push you over the edge. That's why I always start my beginning students out with walking. It's a no-excuse program that get's you to commit and is easy to accomplish while at the same time, it get's you putting "money in the bank, baby!"
What do I mean by "money in the bank"? Simple. You need to invest in you. You need to have some "skin in the game"...something to lose, or else quitting is just too simple. By starting with walking, everyday, you invest in you. After a week, you've got "money in the bank" that you don't want to lose by quitting. Quite simply, this is the most important part in developing a successful exercise program and one that you just won't easily walk away from.
Remember when you were a child. If you're like many of us, you earned a bit of money, spent some for fun and then saved some for later. You didn't bank all of it. The temptation to raid the piggy bank was too great so you didn't set expectations that you knew would just push you over the edge. Well, that's the same issue I have with most exercise programs today. Now don't get me wrong. I mean, most of them are structurally sound and provide great benefits...to those who stick with them. What I'm saying is that, in the beginning stages, I love walking. It's our way of putting a little in the piggy bank without setting expectations we can't achieve. Then, as we bank more and more, our skin in the game increases and we can afford to step up to higher levels of exercise without setting the bar so high that we quit. In short, measured investments produce measured success. So let's look at why walking is an easy and productive way to start putting money in the bank.
|First off, brisk walking, that's walking that gets your heart rate up to its optimal or target level which is 60-80% of your maximum heartrate, lowers the risk of heart disease and Type 2 diabetes in women. That's what the Journal of the American Medical Association said proving that, addition to strengthening your legs, arms and really your whole body, walking can help prevent disease and illness. Further, it's a No-Pain...All-Gain exercise that your body will thank you for. Brisk walking is a stress-free exercise method with low risk of injury unlike running or jogging which put about three times your body weight on your joints. Walking is only about 1.3 times your body weight. Simply stated, lower impact means there's less risk that you'll have sore muscles, aching joints and repetitive stress injuries.|
|It's either a social event or a great way to get some alone time. As I've said before, I'm a big fan of the brisk neighborhood walk. One trip around the block and you've just done a quarter mile! And there's the added benefit of finding friends you'll meet along the way. Think about it. There was a time when we knew all of our neighbors. Today, with TV, video games and long work hours, who goes outside anymore? A brisk walk around the block can rekindle old acquaintances, start new ones or just give you the time you need to drink in some air while your heart pumps away and those muscles and that skin absorb fresh nutrients.|
|Since I train people at all levels, I don't really have time to re-invent the wheel. My job is to help you exercise better, no matter what level you're at, to look better and walking is just the first step. Cardiovascular exercise is designed to get the blood flowing to each and every cell of your body so that there's a vehicle for delivering the oxygen and nutrients to the cells and evacuate the waste products from those cells. As you exercise more, your body gets healthier and you'll need to increase the level at which you exercise. But by then, you'll have money in the bank and WANT to move to the next level. Until then and even afterward, there's a great web site that can give you more information than I ever could about walking, the benefits of it and how to do it right. It's at www.thewalkingsite.com. Or simply click on the link to the left to jump over to their site but remember, success comes from commitment and a program you can stick to...not one someone else says you can stick to. Start slow and invest accordingly. It's the key to investment, it's the key to retirement and its the key to healthier living.|