Ramp Up Your Exercise for Better Quality of Life


Stretching in Exercise Class

Lifestyle change is so complex, but it is simply about improving quality of life.  Long-ingrained, sometimes even culturally ingrained habits can make a lot of things more complex than they need to be.  Exercise need not be a complicated thing to do.  Solid, habitual exercise is part of just being healthy, if not part of weight loss itself.

Stretching regularly is part of basic flexibility and range of motion, and makes exercise less dangerous, less taxing, and less painful later.  It can, and should, be a regular part of the day, multiple times a day, kind of like taking the stairs when on a break at the office.  It makes getting up out of one's seat less dangerous, less taxing, and less painful later, too. 

Yoga and other disciplines such as Pilates offer more in-depth and intensive methods of stretching, and improve posture, mood, and mental discipline and clarity in the process.  Yoga is said to be a discipline that can take a lifetime to pursue, but it is marvelously versatile and adaptable to various body shapes and medical conditions, such as lower back or knee problems. 

If good self examination reveals that one is a couch potato, its a good idea to start with some stretching, and to make it regular, and slowly add other exercise to a basic regime.  A doctor can help with recommendations.

For more aerobic and regular exercise, adding walking is a great low-impact place to start, and a great thing to continue as a lifelong habit.  10,000 steps a day is the recommended amount of walking from many organizations, and depending on one's day-to-day health, that may be a huge goal, or a gross underestimation, a simple starting point.  Other exercise, such as programs designed by a personal trainer, or other programs can be added to stretching and walking as fitness levels increase.

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